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Old 20th March 2019, 03:24 PM   #241
ynot
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
It's interesting that the strength of belief, and number of followers, is enhanced by the undetectability of the god. Yahweh, although called different names, is arguably the same god worshiped by Jews, Muslims, and Christians, and He is equally undetectable in all.

The Yahweh of old was out there all the time. Speaking from burning bushes, parting seas, providing flying horses, and so on, and so on. People were tripping over God everywhere.

Now the interesting thing for me is the lack of belief people seemed to have when they we treated to all this display. The Hebrews who observed God's might when they were lead out of Egypt for example. As soon as Moses climbed the hill to get God's instructions they made a golden calf .... huh?

Then when Jesus was strutting his stuff. Walking on water, raising a guy from the dead, turning water into wine, etc, etc, we have Judas calling him out. Doubting Thomas then becomes famous for having doubts, after being witness to all these miracles.

Perhaps God thought - "Well bugger this, I show them all my stuff and they still won't go for it. Maybe I'll become invisible and see what happens."

No doubt this was a stroke of genius given the number of believers in Him today.
Seems many are hard-wired to want what they can't have. The more they can't have it, the more they want it .
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Old 20th March 2019, 03:27 PM   #242
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Further to the above, I have yet to hear any sort of plausible explanation from theists, about the undetectability of God today, versus the impossible to ignore God, of years ago. I do try to be amicable when I ask the question.
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Old 20th March 2019, 03:30 PM   #243
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Further to the above, I have yet to hear any sort of plausible explanation from theists, about the undetectability of God today, versus the impossible to ignore God, of years ago. I do try to be amicable when I ask the question.
I've heard "He revealed himself once but it didn't work so he's not going to do it again"

Or "If he revealed himself it will take away our free-will to choose".
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Old 20th March 2019, 03:38 PM   #244
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Further to the above, I have yet to hear any sort of plausible explanation from theists, about the undetectability of God today, versus the impossible to ignore God, of years ago. I do try to be amicable when I ask the question.
It seems simple to me. The bible is largely bunk. Made up myths. But this does not mean there is no God. The divine mind created the universe as a place of experience, and trial and error. We are not intended to be able to prove the existence of God because there would be no point in getting born into this world. We could remain securely in higher realms without suffering or struggling but we could not progress. We would remain untried and untested, and therefore unevolved. In this world we have no divine intervention, and are free to act as we choose. Thereby creating consequences that are called karma.
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Old 20th March 2019, 03:49 PM   #245
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Originally Posted by ynot View Post
I've heard "He revealed himself once but it didn't work so he's not going to do it again"

Or "If he revealed himself it will take away our free-will to choose".

Yes to be truthful I have heard a couple of those one liners myself. I do detect a lack of conviction in the tone of the speaker of same however.


The author of "A Manual For Creating Atheists", Peter Boghossian, has an interesting approach. He writes:

Quote:
When speaking with people who hold beliefs based on faith, don’t get into a debate about facts or evidence or even their specific beliefs. Rather, get them to question the manner in which they’ve reached their beliefs—that is, get them to question the value of faith in appraising the world. Once they question the value of faith, all the unevidenced and unreasoned beliefs will inevitably collapse on their own.

It seems a rather soft and non confrontational approach. More amicable perhaps.
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Old 20th March 2019, 03:55 PM   #246
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Originally Posted by ynot View Post
Errors and Omissions Excepted.
Ah. Thanks.
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Old 20th March 2019, 04:47 PM   #247
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
"People's minds change" does not equal "people choose to change their minds." It may feel like that's what happens, but I'm not sure it's true. There is an element of incredulity to my argument, which is this: If I accept that everything I think and feel is determined by chemical/energy states within my CPU, how then do I change that by an act of "will"? Essentially "I" would be overriding my own biology.

And I repeat, I don't see how their resistance to change necessarily implies a choice. Just as I suspect that your atheism is not a choice.

"Their minds change" does not equal "they cause their minds to change." Sorry, I'm repeating myself but I think it's important. Exposure to more views may have been taken on board - which as far as I can tell is a biochemical process, because what else could it be? Some kind of non-material enlightenment that adults are resistant to?

If adults are more resistant, then I speculate it's also do to with biochemistry. They are not necessarily choosing to keep the scales on their eyes. They may experience the scales falling or they may not. But I suspect every single thing we think, do or believe arises from biological processes not under the control of this executive "I" some of us experience so vividly.

When I see atheists saying they can override biological processes with reason, I see them positing dualism - believing their "minds" can change their brains. Any firm materialist who takes credit for his/her own thought processes is IMO exhibiting cognitive dissonance of their own.

Well, I think you are making an argument to say humans (and all other animals) do not have something called "free will". I know many philosophers make that claim. And even Sam Harris makes that claim. But I think Sam and the others are wrong about that ... on YouTube there is for example a debate on free will between Sam Harris and theoretical physicist Sean Carroll, where iirc Carroll is disagreeing with Sam's belief that we do not actually have free will.

However, what I think people like Sam Harris are saying is only that we make decisions in our brain (from sensory input etc.), a minute fraction of a second before we actually become clearly aware in our mind/brain that we have just made that particular decision. But that would not be a denial of us having a free choice to make decisions. If that's all they are saying, then that is only a matter of how long it takes for us to become aware of what has just occurred a tiny fraction of second before in the cells of the brain.

I do not want to get into a debate about so-called "free will", because in that case we will be stuck here for at least another 1000 pages and another 12 months! But ... I think it's obvious and undeniable that we do have free will in the sense that we can freely chose what we want to do with any of our physical actions ... if I want to stop typing at this point without further finishing the sentence except for three ending dots and an asterisk then I can do that ...*
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Old 20th March 2019, 05:02 PM   #248
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Further to the above, I have yet to hear any sort of plausible explanation from theists, about the undetectability of God today, versus the impossible to ignore God, of years ago. I do try to be amicable when I ask the question.
My church would have explained it thusly: That was all before the Messiah. Before Jesus came to redeem the world's sins, God had to manifest directly and intervene a lot. But that changed after Jesus died - it was no longer needed. And anyway, God does intervene in our affairs all the time via his identity as the Holy Spirit. Sons and daughters prophecy, old men dream dreams, young men see visions. Joel 2:28.
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Old 20th March 2019, 05:03 PM   #249
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
I accept all that. Since you bring up Yahweh maybe that's a good place to start. It's not hard, IMO, to make the case (prove, if you like) that Yahweh-God doesn't exist. Once you've proved enough Gods don't exist, you may employ inductive reasoning: "All posited Gods have been disproven, therefore the overwhelming evidence shows that no Gods exist."

This is not quite as solid as a deductive proof, IMO. Until someone can demonstrate that God can't exist, my own personal brain is probably going to harbor reservations.

Well although I'm probably as solid an atheist as anyone you are likely to meet, I also "harbour reservations" ... I cannot claim to actually prove God does not exist. Science (for example) certainly does not claim any such proof either for God or for anything else.

But of course we not need to actually "prove" that God is an impossibility. All that we need to do is to show that the claim of God has no genuine supporting evidence. On top of which, as it happens, there is in fact an enormous mass of quite unarguable supporting evidence to show God probably does not exist ... eg apart from other types of evidence (such as the historical evidence of where the entire God belief came from in the first place) the evidence of everything ever discovered and explained by modern science, which is literally millions of things now, shows no hint of any emiracles or the supernatural anywhere ... and that's waaaay more than enough to conclude that he (God) probably does not exist .
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Old 20th March 2019, 05:12 PM   #250
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Well although I'm probably as solid an atheist as anyone you are likely to meet, I also "harbour reservations" ... I cannot claim to actually prove God does not exist. Science (for example) certainly does not claim any such proof either for God or for anything else.

But of course we not need to actually "prove" that God is an impossibility. All that we need to do is to show that the claim of God has no genuine supporting evidence. On top of which, as it happens, there is in fact an enormous mass of quite unarguable supporting evidence to show God probably does not exist ... eg apart from other types of evidence (such as the historical evidence of where the entire God belief came from in the first place) the evidence of everything ever discovered and explained by modern science, which is literally millions of things now, shows no hint of any emiracles or the supernatural anywhere ... and that's waaaay more than enough to conclude that he (God) probably certainly does not exist in any practical sense .
FTFY
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Old 20th March 2019, 05:33 PM   #251
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
My church would have explained it thusly: That was all before the Messiah. Before Jesus came to redeem the world's sins, God had to manifest directly and intervene a lot. But that changed after Jesus died - it was no longer needed. And anyway, God does intervene in our affairs all the time via his identity as the Holy Spirit. Sons and daughters prophecy, old men dream dreams, young men see visions. Joel 2:28.
Most of the major denominations of Christianity do still say God interferes in the world in ways visible and detectable to all, that's what claims of miracles are after all. If they were not detectable and large scale the churches wouldn't know they happen.
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Old 20th March 2019, 05:41 PM   #252
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Most of the major denominations of Christianity do still say God interferes in the world in ways visible and detectable to all, that's what claims of miracles are after all. If they were not detectable and large scale the churches wouldn't know they happen.
Indeed.
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Old 21st March 2019, 04:13 AM   #253
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
I accept all that. Since you bring up Yahweh maybe that's a good place to start. It's not hard, IMO, to make the case (prove, if you like) that Yahweh-God doesn't exist. Once you've proved enough Gods don't exist, you may employ inductive reasoning: "All posited Gods have been disproven, therefore the overwhelming evidence shows that no Gods exist."
Why bother, though? Virtually all Xians and Muslims will cheerfully agree that all other Gods don't exist. The Xians have been saying so for almost 2000 years now. See, all those miracles and sons of gods with superhuman powers and all? The devil did it. Totally not the real thing.

You could even go down the list with virtually any Xian. Odin? Totally not real. Ra? Ditto. Zeus? Bogus. Amaterasu? Nope. Etc. You won't even get a "might have been real, I suppose" for even a single one of them.

So it seems pointless to go about disproving gods first, when everyone already agrees on that. It's like, dunno, if I were to go into a WW2 thread and insist that I first prove, beyond any reasonable doubt, that Germany did in fact lose the war. What's the point, if nobody is disputing it?

And yet, for the same guys you'll find that the fact that none of the other gods, sons thereof, miracles, sightings, etc, are credible, for THEIR God completely different rules apply. That the whole frikken Swedish army saw Odin in person at the Battle Of Lena in the 13'th century, and saw him personally leading the outclassed and outnumbered Swedish cavalry to victory, and they had the smith who testified to putting new horshoes on Sleipnir the night before, that totally doesn't count as evidence for Odin. But if some inbred hick saw Jesus on his toast, yay, that totally proves that Jesus is real
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Old 21st March 2019, 07:32 AM   #254
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
It seems simple to me. The bible is largely bunk. Made up myths. But this does not mean there is no God. The divine mind created the universe as a place of experience, and trial and error. We are not intended to be able to prove the existence of God because there would be no point in getting born into this world. We could remain securely in higher realms without suffering or struggling but we could not progress. We would remain untried and untested, and therefore unevolved. In this world we have no divine intervention, and are free to act as we choose. Thereby creating consequences that are called karma.


If the bible is largely "bunk, made up of myths" then a bible like that is not much use as evidence for a God, is it?

So outside of the "bunk and myths" of the bible, what else is being offered as evidence of God?

At risk of repeating something I've said here several times already - in biblical times people thought the evidence of God was all around them in the form of earthquakes, thunder & lightening, stars in the sky etc. But we eventually found out that none of those things are evidence of any God at all. The existence of Man was of course still presented as utterly certain evidence of God ... until we discovered Evolution, and that "put paid" to Man as evidence of God as well.

There is actually no evidence left!

Meanwhile we have also discovered that everything that has ever been properly investigated in this universe, always has an entirely natural explanation - there is zero evidence that anything supernatural ever existed or that it even could actually exist. So all known evidence is now overwhelmingly against the existence of a supernatural intelligent designing creator.

So what's left for God?

Even if you consider the last remaining 2 or 3 "Gaps" in our current scientific knowledge where God is still claimed to be hiding, eg the actual cause of the Big Bang (where that is one of the claimed "Gaps"), then consider this - we now have a very accurate understanding of all the particle-field interactions etc. right back from the present-day state of the universe back to within about 1 second after the "Bang" (or even, 1/10 sec after the bang). So whereas in biblical times when the God idea was invented by men, everyone felt certain that God and the actions of God filled all of that time from the very beginning of this universe right up to their own biblical times on the Earth, ie that length of time that was once all filled with the activities of God, ie what we know now is actually a period of 13.8 billion years, now all except that very first 1 second has been explained and studied and there is no sign of any God anywhere in all of that time ... IOW God has now been reduced to just that first 1 second or 1/10 second - the God claim started out filling the entirety of 13.8 billion years, and now all that's left of that claim is 1 single second!
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Old 21st March 2019, 01:42 PM   #255
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
Well although I'm probably as solid an atheist as anyone you are likely to meet, I also "harbour reservations" ... I cannot claim to actually prove God does not exist. Science (for example) certainly does not claim any such proof either for God or for anything else.
Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
Why bother, though? Virtually all Xians and Muslims will cheerfully agree that all other Gods don't exist. The Xians have been saying so for almost 2000 years now. See, all those miracles and sons of gods with superhuman powers and all? The devil did it. Totally not the real thing.
I appreciate the answers from both of you; I just kind of lost interest
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Old 21st March 2019, 02:06 PM   #256
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Most of the major denominations of Christianity do still say God interferes in the world in ways visible and detectable to all, that's what claims of miracles are after all. If they were not detectable and large scale the churches wouldn't know they happen.

The only miracles we hear of, are the ones where one person escapes death when heaps of others are killed, in a natural disaster. Yes we can see God's hand in that can't we.

Once asked a Jesuit priest where all the miracles were happening today. "Well" he said "We have the miracle of the transformation of the Eucharist into the body of Christ at every mass." He smiled as he said these words and I knew he knew I was not convinced. Furthermore I sensed he knew it was a load of tosh also.
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Old 21st March 2019, 05:02 PM   #257
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
The only miracles we hear of, are the ones where one person escapes death when heaps of others are killed, in a natural disaster. Yes we can see God's hand in that can't we.

Once asked a Jesuit priest where all the miracles were happening today. "Well" he said "We have the miracle of the transformation of the Eucharist into the body of Christ at every mass." He smiled as he said these words and I knew he knew I was not convinced. Furthermore I sensed he knew it was a load of tosh also.
Have you never been to an evangelical revival meeting? Miracles occur daily, right in front of an audience.

ETA, just so we're clear: They don't. But the people there believe that they do.
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Old 21st March 2019, 07:33 PM   #258
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
The only miracles we hear of, are the ones where one person escapes death when heaps of others are killed, in a natural disaster. Yes we can see God's hand in that can't we.
Actually, miracles are declared all the time. In the Catholic Church, two miracles are required to make someone a saint:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint
Further investigation may lead to the candidate's beatification with the title "Blessed",[29] which is elevation to the class of the Beati. Next, and at a minimum, proof of two important miracles obtained from God through the intercession of the candidate are required for formal canonization as a saint. These miracles must be posthumous...
There are travelling faith healers throughout the Western world claiming miracles. Lots of miracles are attributed to Indian holy men and holy men in other religions. Miracles everywhere!

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Old 21st March 2019, 07:53 PM   #259
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Most, if not all the theist arguments here seem to boil down to...

"Nah nah nih nah nah, you can't prove God does not exist!"

Of course I can't. As an axiom, its not possible to prove a negative, but what I can to do put the burden of proof where it belongs; upon the theist to prove that God does exist.

I am an atheist. In my world view, magic sky daddies do not exist, and they will continue to not exist until I see proof that they do.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 12:41 AM   #260
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Actually, miracles are declared all the time. In the Catholic Church, two miracles are required to make someone a saint:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint
Further investigation may lead to the candidate's beatification with the title "Blessed",[29] which is elevation to the class of the Beati. Next, and at a minimum, proof of two important miracles obtained from God through the intercession of the candidate are required for formal canonization as a saint. These miracles must be posthumous...
There are travelling faith healers throughout the Western world claiming miracles. Lots of miracles are attributed to Indian holy men and holy men in other religions. Miracles everywhere!

Well GDon you surprise me!

Are you a believer in the authenticity of these miracles that are happening everywhere? Strange we don't he about them in the mainstreams news.

Yes I am aware of the necessity to have miracles in order for a beatification to happen. The late Pope John Paul II had a flair for creating saints and beatifying. He canonised 482 and beatified 1,338 during his 27 years as pontiff. It seems the continual search for miracles was proving very difficult because he sort to dispense with this requirement.

The only kind of miracle to be found these days is the “miraculous cure” type and these are very difficult to prove. Miraculous cures always occur inside the body, rely on diagnosis that could be doubtful, and involve mechanisms that are still not fully understood by science. A panel of five medical experts assembled by the Vatican examine every claim carefully, although the impartiality of their verdict may be in question.

Indian holy men doing their stuff too, oh my.

Can you point to any miracle that is not a bit dodgy? Spare me the bleeding/weeping statues and visions of all kinds. How about something concrete? So many of these dodgy healings by faith healers have been exposed as fraudulent.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 01:54 AM   #261
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
I appreciate the answers from both of you; I just kind of lost interest

OK, great! ... because that saves us all wasting our lives on an argument about "Free Will" lol!



(and tbh; as much I like Sam Harris for 99% of what he says, I think he's lost the plot with "free will" (though many philosophers agree with him ... but that's hardly a recommendation lol!)
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Old 22nd March 2019, 02:37 AM   #262
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Well GDon you surprise me!

Are you a believer in the authenticity of these miracles that are happening everywhere? Strange we don't he about them in the mainstreams news.
Thor 2: "The only miracles we hear of..."
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Old 22nd March 2019, 04:01 AM   #263
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Also; what happened to the original poster Jeffbradt ? After starting the thread with a very oddly worded post, he's then completely disappeared with no apparent concern at all for the very thing he said he was particularly concerned about …

… I suspect jeffbradt is less likely to be the atheist he claimed to be, and more likely to be a Christian troll who was actually hoping to show that atheists here are arrogant intolerant people hell-bent against all theists … well Jeff, it didn't work did it.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 04:12 AM   #264
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Thor 2 - think you missed the point. It's that many of the religious belong to a religion that isn't one of these hidden god of the gap, one of these gods that works behind the scenes. So the Roman Catholic God is an example of a God that over a billion people claim to believe in that makes changes in the world that we can all see and evaluate, we don't have to believe only on faith, their is nothing secret about the RCC's god.

There may well be a "god" hidden in the tiny crevices that we still don't understand but if there is it bears so little resemblance to a god that most religious folk believe exists that it is in fact very misleading to use the label "god".

If a god of the gaps does exist it is not what humans have for millennia claimed to be god.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 07:25 AM   #265
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
There may well be a "god" hidden in the tiny crevices that we still don't understand but if there is it bears so little resemblance to a god that most religious folk believe exists that it is in fact very misleading to use the label "god".

If a god of the gaps does exist it is not what humans have for millennia claimed to be god.
Which is my position: if a thing like a god existed it would be beyond our comprehension. We'd be literally unable to conceive of it. Literally literally, as in our minds couldn't think about it. Which is not at all what theists think when they think of a god who is merely a vastly powerful humanlike being, they're just taking what they can comprehend (a father figure) and magnifying its attributes. They still imagine it thinks like a human, with wants and emotions and perceptions and interests. They give it a personality, make it a person. I find that silly. If a divine force existed it wouldn't be something we could comprehend, and it certainly wouldn't be a person resembling Santa Claus with more magic power.

And therefore if a divine something exists but is beyond our comprehension there is zero point in assuming anything about it or paying it the slightest bit of attention. We can't do anything about it as far as we can tell, perhaps if there's an afterlife we'll have more information then. Until then it seems all speculation will remain unproven, and can be postponed. If a divine something exists and wants something from us it'll have to do the work of explaining itself adequately, after upgrading our brains and possibly the universe so we could understand it. Ancient tribal myths and easily explained psychological issues simply don't cut the mustard.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 10:21 AM   #266
GDon
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Which is my position: if a thing like a god existed it would be beyond our comprehension. We'd be literally unable to conceive of it. Literally literally, as in our minds couldn't think about it. Which is not at all what theists think when they think of a god who is merely a vastly powerful humanlike being, they're just taking what they can comprehend (a father figure) and magnifying its attributes. They still imagine it thinks like a human, with wants and emotions and perceptions and interests.
Surely that fits what many atheists seem to claim, rather than what theists believe?

Atheists: "God is a sky daddy!"
Theists: "God's mysterious ways!"
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Old 22nd March 2019, 10:37 AM   #267
TragicMonkey
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Surely that fits what many atheists seem to claim, rather than what theists believe?

Atheists: "God is a sky daddy!"
Theists: "God's mysterious ways!"
The only depictions of gods I'm familiar with are either anthropomorphic or, as Darat described above, ineffable forces that are so different from the normal conceptions of gods as to be unsuited to the term. Zeus, Jehovah, and Vishnu are anthropomorphic gods. The Tao, the Force, the Logos are the ineffable force types of divine...thing. They're not really what you could call 'gods' alongside the anthropomorphic kind. And when someone posits a divine...thing...even more ineffable and incomprehensible to human understanding than those, the term 'god' doesn't fit in the least. 'My conception of the divine is a universal substance without substance that emanates across the universe from a single point of non-time outside it, and also it doesn't interact with anything and by it's nature we can't conceive of it with our human minds so disregard this sentence entirely' is so unworkable that we shouldn't bother considering it. If it's right we could never know. If it's wrong then we wouldn't know or care, either.

The vast majority of religious believe in an anthropomorphic god. Not so human as the Greek gods, but definitely humanlike in how they think and act. The mystic side of religions, and various philosophies, tend to arrive as ineffable force type of divine...things. But even they don't go as far as the incomprehensible-by-nature, think-it-and-go-mad sort of thing. There's simply no point in wasting time on those even if they turn out to be true. We'd have no way of knowing anyway.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 11:44 AM   #268
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Surely that fits what many atheists seem to claim, rather than what theists believe?



Atheists: "God is a sky daddy!"

Theists: "God's mysterious ways!"
Not quite, it's the theists who claim there is a sky daddy even though we can't see him sitting on the clouds.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 12:03 PM   #269
GDon
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
The vast majority of religious believe in an anthropomorphic god. Not so human as the Greek gods, but definitely humanlike in how they think and act.
Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Not quite, it's the theists who claim there is a sky daddy even though we can't see him sitting on the clouds.
That's simply not my experience when I've posted on theist boards (I'm a theist myself). One of the issues between atheists and theists when discussing the topic of God, unfortunately.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 12:12 PM   #270
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
That's simply not my experience when I've posted on theist boards (I'm a theist myself). One of the issues between atheists and theists when discussing the topic of God, unfortunately.
Perhaps the sort of theist who discusses religion online is a different set than the majority. I know very few theists in real life who don't attribute human emotions to their gods. Love is the most popular one to attribute to a god. Followed by disappointment at how people turned out...coincidentally love and disappointment are two things one frequently encounters in one's parents.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 05:20 PM   #271
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Perhaps the sort of theist who discusses religion online is a different set than the majority.
Perhaps you are right, that the theists I've encountered are self-selective, in that they want to talk about it. It's hard to talk about the views of people whom I don't know!

However, there are surveys. Here is one from 2006 by Baylor University about belief in the USA:
https://www.baylor.edu/mediacommunic...ry&story=41678
One area that emerged from the survey that has excited the researchers is what they call the "Four Gods." Depending on how engaged people think God is in the world and how angry God is with the world...
...

• 31.4 percent believe in an Authoritarian God, who is very judgmental and engaged
• 25 percent believe in a Benevolent God, who is not judgmental but engaged
• 23 percent believe in a Distant God, who is completely removed
• 16 percent believe in a Critical God, who is judgmental but not engaged
...
"This is a very powerful tool to understand core differences in the United States," Froese said. "If I know your image of God, I can tell all kinds of things about you. It's a central part of world view and it's linked to how you think about the world in general."
Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I know very few theists in real life who don't attribute human emotions to their gods. Love is the most popular one to attribute to a god. Followed by disappointment at how people turned out...coincidentally love and disappointment are two things one frequently encounters in one's parents.
Would you call God's love 'anthropomorphic' though? A human-shaped love? God is omnibenevolent with perfect love -- hardly a human quality. An Authoritarian God would have perfect justice, etc. I don't think those are the things that are meant by an anthropomorphic character.

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Old 22nd March 2019, 06:18 PM   #272
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Would you call God's love 'anthropomorphic' though? A human-shaped love? God is omnibenevolent with perfect love -- hardly a human quality. An Authoritarian God would have perfect justice, etc. I don't think those are the things that are meant by an anthropomorphic character.
You need to establish "god is" before you can claim to know "what god is".

I would call all gods anthropomorphic fantasies of some human brains. Any believed qualities of those anthropomorphic fantasy gods are therefore also merely anthropomorphic fantasies.

Why do always write with the assumption/implication that everyone believes and accepts your god beliefs? Do you realise or care that doing so can be easily taken as being an insult?
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Old 22nd March 2019, 07:28 PM   #273
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Would you call God's love 'anthropomorphic' though? A human-shaped love? God is omnibenevolent with perfect love -- hardly a human quality. An Authoritarian God would have perfect justice, etc. I don't think those are the things that are meant by an anthropomorphic character.
Yes, I'd call love and justice anthropomorphic. Those are human conceits, and attributing them to a divine being is anthropomorphizing it. The purported love and justice of God isn't something new and beyond humans, it's regular human concepts magnified. Just like Superman has a regular human quality like strength, only more so. Hence a God that's really loving, and really forgiving. Sticking an infinite number of "very"s in front of a human quality doesn't make it not a human quality.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 09:10 PM   #274
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Originally Posted by IanS View Post
OK, great! ... because that saves us all wasting our lives on an argument about "Free Will" lol!
I'm the one who brought up free will, so I have only myself to blame.

If we don't have it, we certainly have a well-developed illusion going. I'm not wed to materialism, but it seems more coherent than the alternative.

This question seems to become the topic in many threads on this sub-forum.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 11:29 PM   #275
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Re: theists thinking that atheists think they (the atheists_ are, for example, superior. I wonder whether this is because the theists have a bit of a chip on their shoulders, feel defensive, and that they see religious belief slipping, losing its grip, being far more strongly challenged, and, therefore, on the way to becoming - eventually, and far, far too slowly for my liking - a minority opinion.

Wouldn't it be interesting to have a religious leader join this thread and try to argue his/her case?! Unfortunately, they'd never accept that there is zero objective evidence for any god ever.
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Old 23rd March 2019, 12:13 AM   #276
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Yes, I'd call love and justice anthropomorphic. Those are human conceits, and attributing them to a divine being is anthropomorphizing it. The purported love and justice of God isn't something new and beyond humans, it's regular human concepts magnified. Just like Superman has a regular human quality like strength, only more so. Hence a God that's really loving, and really forgiving. Sticking an infinite number of "very"s in front of a human quality doesn't make it not a human quality.
Exactly! One of the problems of arguing with cultivated theists - GDon, here - is that it's hard to know what's really being discussed. They think that by moving away from the obvious human traits of God-especially the negative ones-they have come to a pure concept of God. They really have nothing but their own desires and hopes.

If they don't come out of the religious loop, those who recognize their emptiness end up in negative theologies, existential anguish and God's silence. It is an interesting phenomenon, but a dead end for any attempt of communication between them and unbelievers.

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Old 23rd March 2019, 01:44 AM   #277
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post

Would you call God's love 'anthropomorphic' though? A human-shaped love? God is omnibenevolent with perfect love -- hardly a human quality. An Authoritarian God would have perfect justice, etc. I don't think those are the things that are meant by an anthropomorphic character.
I assume you are not talking about the Christian God here.

The God of the Bible is a murderous and intolerant monster.

It would definitely be of benefit to this conversation if you could define your concept of god more precisely, and state from where you obtained this information.
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Old 23rd March 2019, 07:12 AM   #278
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
That's simply not my experience when I've posted on theist boards (I'm a theist myself). One of the issues between atheists and theists when discussing the topic of God, unfortunately.
Really? You don't chat with RCs, Anglicans and most protestants churches.
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Old 23rd March 2019, 04:58 PM   #279
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Yes, I'd call love and justice anthropomorphic. Those are human conceits, and attributing them to a divine being is anthropomorphizing it. The purported love and justice of God isn't something new and beyond humans, it's regular human concepts magnified. Just like Superman has a regular human quality like strength, only more so. Hence a God that's really loving, and really forgiving. Sticking an infinite number of "very"s in front of a human quality doesn't make it not a human quality.
I think sticking an "omni" in front, though, does.
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Old 23rd March 2019, 05:03 PM   #280
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Sticking an infinite number of "very"s in front of a human quality doesn't make it not a human quality.
Originally Posted by GDon View Post
I think sticking an "omni" in front, though, does.
Wrong, "omni" merely makes if a human fantasy god belief quality.
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