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Old 9th December 2018, 12:00 PM   #161
ynot
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Yes, ignoring my arguments is the adult way of handling them ...
Good we agree on that at least.
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Old 9th December 2018, 12:10 PM   #162
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
I don't see your point. Does it comfort you to know that you've given them a nickname?
It's more convenience than comfort. When the topic of "science conflicts with religion" comes up, evolution and heliocentrism are always the go-to examples. However, science has advanced dramatically in the last hundred years, so if that idea is true, we should see such conflicts escalate. Yet we don't. Thus people have to "round up the usual" (with a nod to the movie 'Casablanca') two examples each time.

What examples have there been from the last 100 years, the period with the most dramatic growth in scientific knowledge in history?
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Old 9th December 2018, 12:54 PM   #163
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
When the topic of "science conflicts with religion" comes up, evolution and heliocentrism are always the go-to examples. However, science has advanced dramatically in the last hundred years, so if that idea is true, we should see such conflicts escalate. Yet we don't.
Because religion lost and got left behind. There's no conflict because there's no comparison. Take, for example, all of modern medicine. Prior to a century ago the typical treatment for anything was to get it blessed/make a sacrifice, and then drink heavily until you got better or died happy. Now people actually survive instead. Is that a conflict? Basic germ theory would have been easy to insert in any holy scripture among the tirades about braided hair. Why isn't it there? Wouldn't god's chosen people have gotten by a lot better if he'd told them to boil their water before drinking it? That's not conflicting explanations, that's a total failure because religion didn't even know there was something to explain.
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Old 9th December 2018, 01:38 PM   #164
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
It's more convenience than comfort. When the topic of "science conflicts with religion" comes up, evolution and heliocentrism are always the go-to examples. However, science has advanced dramatically in the last hundred years, so if that idea is true, we should see such conflicts escalate. Yet we don't. Thus people have to "round up the usual" (with a nod to the movie 'Casablanca') two examples each time.

What examples have there been from the last 100 years, the period with the most dramatic growth in scientific knowledge in history?

Could the answer to this question be, that all the popular claims made by the religious referring to their scripture, have already been soundly refuted? Religious utterances are finite, unlike scientific endeavour. There may be some claims made in religious scripture, and perhaps embellished by modern theologians, no one has seriously sought to refute, being so ludicrous. The scouring out of the Grand Canyon by the receding waters of Noah's flood comes to mind.
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Old 9th December 2018, 01:43 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
It's more convenience than comfort. When the topic of "science conflicts with religion" comes up, evolution and heliocentrism are always the go-to examples. However, science has advanced dramatically in the last hundred years, so if that idea is true, we should see such conflicts escalate. Yet we don't. Thus people have to "round up the usual" (with a nod to the movie 'Casablanca') two examples each time.

What examples have there been from the last 100 years, the period with the most dramatic growth in scientific knowledge in history?

Are you seriously asking that question? The examples are that ordinary people are not only beginning to understand both heliocentrism and evolution, and in many countries they've achieved levels of prosperity and health care where they no longer have to live in constant fear of losing their lives to diseases and starvation, which means that they now feel so safe and secure that they are leaving religion behind:

Originally Posted by dann View Post
most Christians (at least in my part of the world) don't believe in life after death: Only 25% of Danes believe in life after death, 20% believe in JC's resurrection, 48% are non-believers, but 75% are members of the state church!

And people are not only leaving organized religion behind: The institutions of organized religion themselves are being secularized. These are some of the examples "from the last 100 years, the period with the most dramatic growth in scientific knowledge in history."
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 9th December 2018, 01:47 PM   #166
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Religious utterances are finite, unlike scientific endeavour.

No, they aren't. You can make up as many as you want to. And believers do. All the time.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 9th December 2018, 02:04 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by ynot View Post
Mutually exclusive means two things that can’t be true at the same time. Are you claiming that science and religion aren’t mutually exclusive?
Yes.

Quote:
Mortality and immortality are both true at the same time?
No.

Quote:
How about consciousness being purely brain created as well as being cosmic and eternal at the same time?
Obviously not.

Quote:
Are theistic magic and miracles mutually compatible with science?
Quite possibly.

Quote:
The fact that science and religion are mutually exclusive is the very reason for this thread!
No.

...


OK, let me explain. Science does not, as a matter of definition, make negative claims, so science cannot claim that religion is untrue.

Science is not a religion, or even an opinion. Science is a method for discovering facts.

Science is also the recognition that a fact is only a fact pending contrary evidence.

Religion is faith. It can make any claim, and it does not need evidence, only faith.

So, obviously, you can do science, and have faith in something, at the same time. Even the basic faith that science will eventually explain all.

Hans
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Old 9th December 2018, 02:59 PM   #168
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
OK, let me explain. Science does not, as a matter of definition, make negative claims, so science cannot claim that religion is untrue.

Science is not a religion, or even an opinion. Science is a method for discovering facts.

Science is also the recognition that a fact is only a fact pending contrary evidence.

Religion is faith. It can make any claim, and it does not need evidence, only faith.

So, obviously, you can do science, and have faith in something, at the same time. Even the basic faith that science will eventually explain all.

Hans
Science is only a method. It's the method of science and the method of religion that are in conflict and are mutually exclusive.

To use your own words . . .

Science method - "Science is not a religion, or even an opinion. Science is a method for discovering facts."

Religion method - "Religion is faith. It can make any claim, and it does not need evidence, only faith."

Diametrically opposed and mutually exclusive methods.

Applying the scientific method and the religious method to the same thing at the same time results in cognitive dissonance.
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Old 9th December 2018, 03:30 PM   #169
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I don’t know why some theists are so keen to “buddy-up” with science. Don’t they realise they already have the “winning” formula with magic, miracles, mysterious ways and "ours is not to question why"? This formula means anything is possible, nothing is impossible, nothing needs to be explained or justified, and nothing can be disproved.
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Old 9th December 2018, 04:11 PM   #170
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
No, they aren't. You can make up as many as you want to. And believers do. All the time.

Perhaps you don't know what finite means or is it you have not been following the conversation?

I was replying to a post by GDon where he was suggesting that scientific refutations of things religious was pretty much confined to the evolution and heliocentric topics. My post was suggesting the number of religious utterances were finite, (talking about the past here ...... get it?), and many so ridiculous nobody would feel compelled to refute them.
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Old 9th December 2018, 04:50 PM   #171
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Could the answer to this question be, that all the popular claims made by the religious referring to their scripture, have already been soundly refuted?
Well, yes and no. Most claims in the Bible aren't refutable by science, because they don't intersect with it. What tests would you run to confirm a Psalm or a Proverb is true? What about Ecclesiastes?

Most of the issues come from Genesis, with describing the creation of the world and man. Even then, once those stories are treated as metaphor (which has been done for thousands of years), what then? How does science disprove a metaphor?

Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
There may be some claims made in religious scripture, and perhaps embellished by modern theologians, no one has seriously sought to refute, being so ludicrous. The scouring out of the Grand Canyon by the receding waters of Noah's flood comes to mind.
Yes, that's more along the lines of the sort of example I had in mind, though even here there is no religious dogma around the Grand Canyon. Young Earth Creationists want to believe in a young earth with a world-wide flood, but YECism is a modern phenomenon, for what that's worth.
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Old 9th December 2018, 05:18 PM   #172
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Originally Posted by GDon
What examples have there been from the last 100 years, the period with the most dramatic growth in scientific knowledge in history?
Are you seriously asking that question?
Yes, I am seriously asking that question. "In the last 100 years, science says X, which conflicts with religion that says Y." If increasing science leads to increasing conflict, then you should be able to find examples, with more recent examples given that science grows exponentially.

Originally Posted by dann View Post
The examples are that ordinary people are not only beginning to understand both heliocentrism and evolution, and in many countries they've achieved levels of prosperity and health care where they no longer have to live in constant fear of losing their lives to diseases and starvation, which means that they now feel so safe and secure that they are leaving religion behind:
From a 2013 study of world wide religion trends, comparing 1910 to 2010:
https://web.archive.org/web/20130927...674547-196.pdf
... the world as a whole now has more people with traditional religious views than ever before – and they constitute a growing proportion of the world’s population.”

Last edited by GDon; 9th December 2018 at 05:32 PM.
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Old 9th December 2018, 05:25 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
Take, for example, all of modern medicine. Prior to a century ago the typical treatment for anything was to get it blessed/make a sacrifice, and then drink heavily until you got better or died happy.
Oh c'mon. I don't mind a little hyperbole at times, but that is ridiculous. I'm sure the physician Galen, living two thousand years ago, would disagree with you there.

And that's why I get sucked into these threads. By making such ridiculous statements you are basically crapping on the history of the development of ideas by mankind.

Originally Posted by Beelzebuddy View Post
Basic germ theory would have been easy to insert in any holy scripture among the tirades about braided hair. Why isn't it there? Wouldn't god's chosen people have gotten by a lot better if he'd told them to boil their water before drinking it? That's not conflicting explanations, that's a total failure because religion didn't even know there was something to explain.
Exactly. Religious doctrine isn't refuted by cloning, nuclear power and other things developed in the last 100 years, because religion has absolutely nothing to say about such matters. (I'm not trying to defend religion here, but history.)

Last edited by GDon; 9th December 2018 at 06:11 PM.
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Old 9th December 2018, 06:14 PM   #174
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
That two things can't be true at the same time doesn't mean that one individual can't consider both true, some of them without feeling much cognitive dissonance (Wikipedia). See Bob Bakker (Wikipedia).
You seem to consider that science represents the belief in mortality and religion represents the belief in immortality, but nowadays some (too many!) believers in science hope that science will bring them immortality. There's a lucrative market for this kind of belief, which tends to be much more expensive than the religious belief in eternal life after death; look at these jerks (Wikipedia), for instance, and most Christians (at least in my part of the world) don't believe in life after death: Only 25% of Danes believe in life after death, 20% believe in JC's resurrection, 48% are non-believers, but 75% are members of the state church! (The last three links to news media in Danish)
Cosmic and eternal consciousness is probably a new-age idea and not theistic, but you are right about science not supporting the idea.
Nor are theistic magic and miracles compatible with science, which is the reason why many people of faith no longer believe in them.
We are making serious strides here in the US in terms of fewer people believing in Sky Daddy, however, 62% still believe in life after death.

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/publ..._the_afterlife
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Old 9th December 2018, 08:28 PM   #175
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Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer View Post
Hi attempt5001,

Let me add my belated welcome to the forum and my own input such as it is and although much of it repeats what others have said. To give you some background, I grew up in a nominally Christian household, went to an explicitly Christian school where the Bible was taught as fact (although to be fair evolution wasn't denied, contradictions simply weren't mentioned), daily religious assemblies, hymns and prayer etc. By the time I was eight I knew I didn't believe, but my older brother wound up very religious.


I also read your post as effectively saying that you've known really nice people of your religion and consider this evidence the religion is true, as others have said I too have known fantastic people from various religions and none, some of the nicest people I've known have been religious, so too have many of the most unpleasant (anecdotally the two most criminal people I've known are regular church goers who define themselves very much by their religion). Your belief that religion keeps you consistent in behaving in a moral manner strikes me as cultural rather than divine. You obviously live in a community with strong social ties, rules that you consider positive and good role models, definitely important for society but not intrinsicly divine!

With regard the use of terms like 'myth' and 'fairy tale', sometimes yes they are a dig, sometimes they're appropriate, sometimes it's because we're trying to get across that to people outside of a religion there are aspects that are completely unbelievable, completely, utterly, Jesus walking on water, Mohammed flying to Heaven on a winged horse with a human face, Joseph Smith transcribing the golden plates, Xenu. Chances are you don't believe in any but one of them yourself, we don't believe any of them at all, honestly, the difference between the Pope and that guy who calls himself 'Arthur Pendragon' and claims to be leader of the druids is numbers, social acceptance and wealth.

I would be interested to hear what it is that you feel is the dividing line between your belief and your scepticism? What is it that you believe but don't think is true?
Hi P.J. Thanks for the welcome and the response, including the synopsis of your own background.

I realize my OP came across like "my experience is good, so it must be true", as you and others have understandably interpreted. I meant it more as an explanation of why it's very hard for me to simply discount it all, and why the process of re-evaluating my faith and experiences more critically is something I am doing carefully and gradually.

You're spot-on on your assertion though that I have historically believed Christian accounts of miracles, while discounting those of other religions. And I've even been more readily skeptical of Christians from other denominations than of my immediate community. Some other recent events have helped me recognize, and begin to change this way of thinking and I'm making progress. As others have pointed out in this thread, it's not easy to recognize, let alone change, all of one's own prejudices, whether religious or other. (I could make a dig at the politics of my beloved neighbours to the south here, but I'll refrain).

Regarding dividing lines, those are in flux at present, and I wouldn't say there are things I believe that I don't think are true, so much as things things I recognize I cannot prove, or even test in a meaningful way, which I've tried to express as best I can throughout the thread. Sorry, that's not a thorough response to a very good question and I'll try to articulate more later if I can.
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Old 9th December 2018, 08:51 PM   #176
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Hello again attempt5001 and thanks for your detailed response.

Unlike yourself I do want to discourage, and damage the faith of others, if I can see that faith impacting the lives of others directly, or indirectly by propping up institutions involved in doing just this. Note the emphasis is on attacking the faith, not the faithful, who I see as victims themselves.

From what you write I get the impression that your grip on faith is tenuous. Certainly many of the words attributed to Christ are inspiring, but it is well known they are not unique and most have been borrowed from other sources, before his time. If you are hoping that Christianity will help mankind overcome hatred, selfishness and greed, history would seem to contradict you. Christianity must hold the record as the most fragmented religion of all time with its 40,000 different versions, some of whom dislike each other intensely. If I may introduce a note of levity into this discussion you may enjoy the following:



You will note a certain large canine is trying to divert this discussion into one about peripheral issues, like how offensive it is to use certain descriptive language. This is a common tactic of his that can be irritating. Best to just ignore the posts as the bulk of us do.
Hi Thor 2. The last bit first. I don't know if it's his original joke (likely much older), but I heard that years ago in a stand up routine by a comedian named Emo Philips (he had a bit part as "the clumsy table saw operator" in Weird Al Yankovic's classic film "UHF" I believe). It brought back memories of the rest of the routine as well, which was hilarious (or struck me as such ~25 years ago, not sure if it would hold up now.) Anyway, thanks for the laugh and the trip down memory lane. Also, he makes a good point.

As for the wanting to tear down faith, I understand what you are saying and have had several atheist friends who have felt similarly. I can empathize too, having attempted for example to dissuade other friends from taking/promoting homeopathic remedies to treat cancer or instead of vaccines. I appreciate your emphasis of attacking the faith, not the faithful, but I'm sure you've found it a hard line to walk, with the faithful sometimes (possibly always) feeling attacked whether it was your intention or not. It's pretty similar to the "hate the sin, not the sinner" approach, which is similarly not well received by most "sinners" I think. I won't try to dissuade you from it, but I would encourage you to critically evaluate whether it's effective (you pick the metric ).

Interestingly, it does remind me of another historical figure who aggressively worked to tear down misplaced faith and the institutions that surrounded it, so maybe you're being more Christ-like than you know Thanks for the good dialogue.
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Old 9th December 2018, 09:50 PM   #177
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Originally Posted by attempt5001 View Post
As such, there is inevitable (and increasing over the last number of years) tension/conflict between my faith and my skepticism.
Attempt5001, if you have time, I'd love to understand what are the more major tensions/conflicts between your faith and skepticism. Also, is there anything in particular that you have learned recently that is contributing to that conflict?
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Old 9th December 2018, 11:07 PM   #178
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Originally Posted by attempt5001 View Post
...

You're spot-on on your assertion though that I have historically believed Christian accounts of miracles, while discounting those of other religions. And I've even been more readily skeptical of Christians from other denominations than of my immediate community. Some other recent events have helped me recognize, and begin to change this way of thinking and I'm making progress. As others have pointed out in this thread, it's not easy to recognize, let alone change, all of one's own prejudices, whether religious or other. (I could make a dig at the politics of my beloved neighbours to the south here, but I'll refrain).
...
Hi attempt5001, welcome to the forum.

On the issue of miracles, I don't share the position that they are incompatible with scientific understanding (although perhaps incompatible with the assumptions required for science). I have more of a problem with their compatibility with a just and loving god.

I'd be interested in what denomination and beliefs you have been associated with. Christianity is pretty broad and there are definitely some approaches that conflict with sceptical thinking more than others.

Are you familiar with some of the progressive Christian writers and their approach to faith?
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Old 9th December 2018, 11:25 PM   #179
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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
We are making serious strides here in the US in terms of fewer people believing in Sky Daddy, however, 62% still believe in life after death.

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/publ..._the_afterlife
I don't know anyone who believes in "sky daddy," Islam is growing like crazy and atheists are by far and away the worst monsters in the last 100 years.

most atheism is the antithesis of skepticism because they are sneering bigots.
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Old 9th December 2018, 11:50 PM   #180
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Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
62% still believe in life after death.

And 77% of Americans believe that Jesus rose from the dead: http://www.rasmussenreports.com/publ..._from_the_dead
I wonder what caused the discrepancy between the two numbers. Did the respondents think of the question as Biblical in one case? 'According to the Bible, did Jesus Christ rise from the dead?' but more 'real-world-like' in the other? 'Considering what I know about what happens when people die, is it very likely that there is life after death?'

Americans appear to be as divided about the question of religion as they are about Trump's presidency. Still, there must be whole communities where almost 100% are believers, and (a few) others where a majority aren't.
Since I'm aware that a large majority of Americans are religious, I'm sometimes surprised by the response of audiences to stand-up comedians' jokes about religion, but I guess that these comedians may cater to the 23% minority.
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"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:00 AM   #181
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
From a 2013 study of world wide religion trends, comparing 1910 to 2010:
https://web.archive.org/web/20130927...674547-196.pdf
... the world as a whole now has more people with traditional religious views than ever before – and they constitute a growing proportion of the world’s population.”
It also says :

Quote:
Fourth, agnostics and atheists grew from less than 1% of the world’s population to well over 11%.
It's the people classified as "Other religionists" who shrank in numbers, from almost 32% to 12%. Christianity and the other major religions stayed about the same, and Islam grew from 12% to 22%.

The religious landscape has also changed significantly since 2010. For example:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/a...ion-is-rising/
Quote:
A 2015 Pew Research Center poll reported that 34 to 36 percent of millennials (those born after 1980) are nones and corroborated the 23 percent figure, adding that this was a dramatic increase from 2007, when only 16 percent of Americans said they were affiliated with no religion.
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:04 AM   #182
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
I don't know anyone who believes in "sky daddy," Islam is growing like crazy and atheists are by far and away the worst monsters in the last 100 years.

most atheism is the antithesis of skepticism because they are sneering bigots.

Christians managed to kill millions in Indochina in the 1960s and '70s, but the millions weren't Christians, of course. Christians also killed millions in WW1 and WW2. In WW1 most of the victims were probably also Christians, but that was now more than 100 years ago, of course.
Are you saying that atheists killed and tortured more people than Christians did? Or is it because your definition of monsters is a different one? People who aren't Christian, maybe?
(And if you don't like sneering bigots, how come you're so fond of Trump?!)
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"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:13 AM   #183
David Mo
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
It certainly is NOT clear. Otherwise people wouldn't keep using the same two "usual suspects": evolution and Galileo. If increasing science led to more religious conflicts, then you'd expect that there would be more conflicts in the (for example) last 25 years than in the same period before that. It just isn't there.


Most religious beliefs have nothing to do with science. Sin, grace, forgiveness, indulgences, the after-life, etc. Some people speculate on how science may or may not prove or disprove such ideas, but dogma rarely is specific enough to be testable.

People use the examples of evolution and heliocentrism to try to extrapolate from that there is a broader conflict, but struggle to find examples beyond that, despite how science has increased so dramatically in the last 100 years. Why? Shouldn't there be more conflicts as science increases?
I had misunderstood you. You mean "conflict between science and religion". Is it not?

The struggle of religion against heliocentrism was not against Galileo only. The same with evolution. They were a broad battle against every idea with any hint of going against the churches' Sacred Magisterium. It lasted four centuries and caused countless victims not so famous as Galileo or Darwin.
Besides this, the fight was not limited only to heliocentrism or evolution. Miquel Servet was burned alive in Geneva for his ideas about the blood circulation; Giordano Bruno because of his defence of the infinity of the universe. The churches also chased the atomism, the scientific method and even mathematics as devil works.

Even when it was absolutely discredited, the Catholic church promoted the sacred-finalist version of evolution by Teilhard de Chardin. In the twentieth century!

Nowadays it seems that the pockets of religious resistance to science are reduced to fundamentalism . This is a victory of science, not a gracious churches' gift. Efforts of intelligent religious people are directed now to maintain private grounds and churches attack basically in the field of morality. But nothing assure us that an involution cannot be possible. The times are turbulent and rampant-far right. And extreme right wing and Inquisition are close friends.

Last edited by David Mo; 10th December 2018 at 12:15 AM.
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:15 AM   #184
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Since I'm aware that a large majority of Americans are religious, I'm sometimes surprised by the response of audiences to stand-up comedians' jokes about religion, but I guess that these comedians may cater to the 23% minority.
A lot of Christians can laugh at the absurdity of their belief, and many feel very negatively towards "organized" religion.

Carlin's "religion is BS" skit was kind of instrumental in my own leaving Christianity, tho. I remember thinking after watching it, that it was only the tip of the iceburg he touched upon, because I actually believed there's was an invisible man who lived in the sky who had to become his own child, and killed himself as a sacrifice to himself to appease his own bloodlust, AND after death he came back as a sort of functional zombie before floating away into the sky, AND now all of us followers regularly ate his symbolic flesh and drank his symbolic blood as part of a weird "symbolic cannibalism" ritual.
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:31 AM   #185
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Yes, I am seriously asking that question. "In the last 100 years, science says X, which conflicts with religion that says Y." If increasing science leads to increasing conflict, then you should be able to find examples, with more recent examples given that science grows exponentially.


From a 2013 study of world wide religion trends, comparing 1910 to 2010:
https://web.archive.org/web/20130927...674547-196.pdf
... the world as a whole now has more people with traditional religious views than ever before – and they constitute a growing proportion of the world’s population.”

Like I said: If people learn science and get better living conditions, religion loses its grip on people. However, an awful lot of people don't!

Quote:
According to the Pew Research Center's 2012 global study of 230 countries and territories, 16% of the world's population is not affiliated with a religion, while 84% are affiliated. By 2060, according to their projections, the number of unaffiliated will increase by over 35 million, but the percentage will decrease to 13% because the total population will grow faster
Irreligion (Wikipedia)
Atheism (not irreligion) in the USA (Wikipedia)
List of countries by irreligion (Wikipedia)

I guess that deprivation is the best way to keep religion alive and well:
The Death of Religion thread.
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"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:38 AM   #186
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Originally Posted by The Big Dog View Post
... and atheists are by far and away the worst monsters in the last 100 years.
.
And Christians killed hundred of thousands children in Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Balkans, Ireland, etc., etc. Add the First World War and the Christian-Nazis killers in the Second World War. You can add the millions of Americans, Asians and Africans killed under the Christian colonialism and the apartheid regime. All Criminal Christians.
Now we can pass to the Shintoist criminals in China, Korea, the Philippines, etc.
And we cannot forgot the populated variety of Islam criminals with the extermination of Armenian people in first place.
If we added the Hinduist criminals, etc., etc., etc., the "Atheist crimes" are in the caboose. Theist criminals won by a landslide.

And I don't count the victims of Christian capitalism, because the recountsum would never end.

Last edited by David Mo; 10th December 2018 at 12:41 AM.
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:44 AM   #187
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Originally Posted by David Mo View Post
I had misunderstood you. You mean "conflict between science and religion". Is it not?

Yes, that appears to be what he means. However, in my own country the death of religion didn't mean that there was any big conflict the way that GDon seems to believe. On the contrary: What has happened is that people are slowly losing their need to believe. They actually stay in church (it's where you get married and buried), they just don't go to church:

Quote:
In January 2017, 75.9% of the population of Denmark were registered members of the Church of Denmark (Den Danske Folkekirke), the officially established church, which is Protestant in classification and Lutheran in orientation. This is down 1.0% compared to the year earlier and 1.9% down compared to two years earlier. Despite the high membership figures, only 3% of the population regularly attend Sunday services and only 19% of Danes consider religion to be an important part of their life.
Religion in Denmark (Wikipedia)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:48 AM   #188
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Originally Posted by David Mo View Post
Add the First World War and the Christian-Nazis killers in the Second World War.

I also mentioned the Vietnam War and WW1+2, but even though you had Christian countries killing millions, it needs to be said that these wars weren't really about religion.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:52 AM   #189
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
I actually believed there's was an invisible man who lived in the sky who had to become his own child, and killed himself as a sacrifice to himself to appease his own bloodlust, AND after death he came back as a sort of functional zombie before floating away into the sky, AND now all of us followers regularly ate his symbolic flesh and drank his symbolic blood as part of a weird "symbolic cannibalism" ritual.

Only an insignificant number of contemporary Danes believe in that kind of Christianity. I personally don't know any.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:55 AM   #190
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Originally Posted by attempt5001 View Post
As such, there is inevitable (and increasing over the last number of years) tension/conflict between my faith and my skepticism.
What I kind of "came to" with that was beginning to see faith (in the strictly religious sense) as a vice and skepticism as a virtue. It was incredible painful and darkly surreal, but I'd been suffering from significant cognitive dissonance trying to hold the "truths" of Christianity in my head and chase objective reality at the same time.

I realized that I'd been indoctrinated into Christianity (to the point of brainwashing,) and I felt that if god was real, I'd need to figure that out on different terms other than the "faith" method of getting in touch with the truth. I knew from watching others that people can fully believe anything if they're determined to believe it. I couldn't shake the suspicion that I was doing that same thing myself with Christianity.

I still kind of hope to one day discover something like god. It seems less and less likely as the years pass, though. When I first said a sort of "goodbye prayer" to god and took the cognitive dive into agnostic-atheism, I really expected to be Christian again within a year. Or a deist, at least. Heh. But nope! While I have days where I feel like a deist, I'm always aware that it's likely just a strange mood, and it passes quickly. I am somewhat intrigued by some of the arguments about cosmological fine-tuning, though. That's as close as I get to theism.

There are certain...neural networks leftover from my former Christian mind which are permanent fixtures in my psychology, though, and I'm ok with that. When I look at someone needing my help, my mind goes right to seeing them as "sacred", a la "I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me...". And when I think about stuff like the altruistic instincts the various social species have, it strikes me as a sort of "divinity" (just sans any connection to deities or anything supernatural. )
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:56 AM   #191
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Only an insignificant number of contemporary Danes believe in that kind of Christianity. I personally don't know any.
It's over half of Americans.

Weird stuff. LOL
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Old 10th December 2018, 12:59 AM   #192
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Perhaps you don't know what finite means or is it you have not been following the conversation?

I was replying to a post by GDon where he was suggesting that scientific refutations of things religious was pretty much confined to the evolution and heliocentric topics. My post was suggesting the number of religious utterances were finite, (talking about the past here ...... get it?), and many so ridiculous nobody would feel compelled to refute them.

Yes, I get it, but you don't, apparently. You are talking about religion as if it was all over! It isn't. New religious utterances are added every day, and so are new interpretations of the old ones, get it?
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 01:10 AM   #193
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Yes, I get it, but you don't, apparently. You are talking about religion as if it was all over! It isn't. New religious utterances are added every day, and so are new interpretations of the old ones, get it?
Well, religions are unlikely to come up with their own new theories of weather, cosmology, and the origins of humanity now. Those particular types of truth claims were finite. I guess some new age religion could take off looking at the "spirituality of quantum physics" or whatever, tho (like Deepak Chopra tries to do.)
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Old 10th December 2018, 01:17 AM   #194
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Originally Posted by ynot View Post
Science method - "Science is not a religion, or even an opinion. Science is a method for discovering facts."

You are both wrong: Science is not a way of discovering facts. Newton didn't discover the fact of gravity. He explained gravity. People had actually already noticed that apples don't fall upwards: "he discovered the laws of gravity" (ignore the title; they get it right in the article).
And Darwin may have discovered a lot of fossils and new species, but his major contribution to the knowledge of mankind was that he explained how they were connected, evolution.
Which he did, of course, by using scientific reasoning, the scientific method ...
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th December 2018, 01:24 AM   #195
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Originally Posted by David Mo View Post
Originally Posted by GDon
People use the examples of evolution and heliocentrism to try to extrapolate from that there is a broader conflict, but struggle to find examples beyond that, despite how science has increased so dramatically in the last 100 years. Why? Shouldn't there be more conflicts as science increases?
I had misunderstood you. You mean "conflict between science and religion". Is it not?
That's right. Since science has increased so dramatically in the last 100 years, if science conflicts with religion is true, then we should be seeing increasing conflicts. Instead, people have to go back hundreds to a thousand years to find examples.

Originally Posted by David Mo View Post
The struggle of religion against heliocentrism was not against Galileo only. The same with evolution. They were a broad battle against every idea with any hint of going against the churches' Sacred Magisterium. It lasted four centuries and caused countless victims not so famous as Galileo or Darwin.
No it didn't cause countless victims. Darwin was not a victim by any means. Galileo would have been allowed to teach heliocentrism as a theory in universities except that he tried convincing the church that they were interpreting scripture incorrectly. You need to read Tim O'Neill's excellent blog series "History for Athiests", where he goes through topics about history to show that some atheists are simply repeating myths rather than history. Tim is an atheist historian, and he is even more annoyed than me on how these myths keep getting repeated uncritically.
https://historyforatheists.com/

Originally Posted by David Mo View Post
Besides this, the fight was not limited only to heliocentrism or evolution. Miquel Servet was burned alive in Geneva for his ideas about the blood circulation; Giordano Bruno because of his defence of the infinity of the universe. The churches also chased the atomism, the scientific method and even mathematics as devil works.

Even when it was absolutely discredited, the Catholic church promoted the sacred-finalist version of evolution by Teilhard de Chardin. In the twentieth century!
Okay.

Originally Posted by David Mo View Post
Nowadays it seems that the pockets of religious resistance to science are reduced to fundamentalism.
Pretty much, yes.
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Old 10th December 2018, 01:28 AM   #196
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
You are both wrong
..and I think you are all correct in different ways. People mean different things when they say "science". The totality of the topic of "what is science?" is not something most people ever really think about comprehensively, and it's really more complex than you'd guess right off the bat.

You're all describing different aspects of science, IMO.
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Old 10th December 2018, 02:59 AM   #197
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Since science has increased so dramatically in the last 100 years, if science conflicts with religion is true, then we should be seeing increasing conflicts. Instead, people have to go back hundreds to a thousand years to find examples.


No it didn't cause countless victims. Darwin was not a victim by any means. Galileo would have been allowed to teach heliocentrism as a theory in universities except that he tried convincing the church that they were interpreting scripture incorrectly. You need to read Tim O'Neill's excellent blog series "History for Athiests", where he goes through topics about history to show that some atheists are simply repeating myths rather than history. Tim is an atheist historian, and he is even more annoyed than me on how these myths keep getting repeated uncritically.
https://historyforatheists.com/
The increase in science in the 20th century has been accompanied by a decline in ecclesiastical pressure in the Western world. It would be necessary to discuss which is the cause and which is the effect. I believe that the decisive factor has been an increase in secularism in civil society. It is relatively much less in the Muslim or Hindu, where the conflict is still strong.

When I speak of victims, I do not mean victims of physical attacks alone. The victims have been also teachers expelled from their chairs, intellectuals ostracized and exiled or even those who have had to censor themselves, such as Darwin.
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Old 10th December 2018, 03:18 AM   #198
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
You need to read Tim O'Neill's excellent blog series "History for Athiests", where he goes through topics about history to show that some atheists are simply repeating myths rather than history. Tim is an atheist historian, and he is even more annoyed than me on how these myths keep getting repeated uncritically.
https://historyforatheists.com/.
I don't think Tim O'Neill's blog is excellent. He says he's an atheist, although I don't think so. What he's trying to do is a work of historical revisionism denying what he calls "myths" of atheism. The ones I've read are a ceremony of confusion.
To demystify the persecutions against Copernicus is fine, but it cannot be ignored that Copernicus was not persecuted because he published his masterpiece in the same year of his death and because he did everything possible to link it to the Scholastic Authority. And whatever happened to Copernicus, it would be foolish to deny the fierce persecution of heliocentrism by the church. Without these important facts, O'Neill's demystification is the creation of a new myth.

Something similar happens with his "demystification" of Hypatia.

If you want you can call him a "historian". He defines himself as an amateur historian. He fits better.
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Old 10th December 2018, 04:37 AM   #199
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Originally Posted by attempt5001 View Post
Hi P.J. Thanks for the welcome and the response, including the synopsis of your own background.

I realize my OP came across like "my experience is good, so it must be true", as you and others have understandably interpreted. I meant it more as an explanation of why it's very hard for me to simply discount it all, and why the process of re-evaluating my faith and experiences more critically is something I am doing carefully and gradually.

You're spot-on on your assertion though that I have historically believed Christian accounts of miracles, while discounting those of other religions. And I've even been more readily skeptical of Christians from other denominations than of my immediate community. Some other recent events have helped me recognize, and begin to change this way of thinking and I'm making progress. As others have pointed out in this thread, it's not easy to recognize, let alone change, all of one's own prejudices, whether religious or other. (I could make a dig at the politics of my beloved neighbours to the south here, but I'll refrain).

Regarding dividing lines, those are in flux at present, and I wouldn't say there are things I believe that I don't think are true, so much as things things I recognize I cannot prove, or even test in a meaningful way, which I've tried to express as best I can throughout the thread. Sorry, that's not a thorough response to a very good question and I'll try to articulate more later if I can.
Thank you for taking the time to respond, you've had a lot of responses so it is appreciated. If you can settle on an example that you think has sufficient 'legs' to discuss specifically I for one would definitely be interested, although you might like to start a fresh thread for it, I think it could be a productive discussion. Either way, I look forward to hearing your perspective on some of our on going religious discussions.
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Old 10th December 2018, 04:46 AM   #200
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Yes, that appears to be what he means. However, in my own country the death of religion didn't mean that there was any big conflict the way that GDon seems to believe. On the contrary: What has happened is that people are slowly losing their need to believe.
It's not a question of what I believe, but of what some claim: that increasing science conflicts increasingly with belief, therefore people stop believing. But there is simply no evidence for that particular claim. Religious dogma says nothing about cloning, nuclear physics, etc, so scientific discoveries in the last 100 years have no direct impact on religion.

Instead, I think it is along the lines you propose: there is no need to attend church and no need to adopt religious dogma, so people drift away; but I'd put that down to social conventions -- e.g. less pressure to be seen as religious due to declining social power by religions. Part of that may indeed be the idea that we have science, so we don't need religion. But that is due more to fashion rather than any particular scientific discovery.

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