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Old 07-14-2015, 03:03 PM   #57
Oswlek
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Oswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museumOswlek should have their sex organs bronzed for posterity and put in a museum
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Originally Posted by Baron Samedi View Post
I would be interested in elaboration, if you have the time.
Good deal.

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Atheism is a matter of faith as well, no more and no less than believing in God.
It appears that you are going with the common misuse of atheist, "belief that God doesn't exist" in which people bridge the two by inserting "agnostic" in between. In this framework, "atheist" has an equal burden and an equally impossible task.

That isn't an accurate usage, however. An atheist isn't defined as someone who is certain that God doesn't exist, s/he is someone who doesn't feel that theists have met their burden of proof and thus doesn't find a reason to believe. Gnosticism pertains to knowledge and isn't really germane to the topic.

Frankly, "atheist" is ultimately a meaningless term. For every other situation, the null hypothesis is the default and requires no description, which explains why there are no a-santaists or a-pixieists. Saying that someone needs an equal amount of faith to be an atheist is akin to saying those that believe and disbelieve in the Easter Bunny are on equal footing.

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if you want to know God, you study the cosmos, his creation.
This is one I used to find compelling, but I realized recently why it doesn't hold water.

In all your examples, you study the work of a great artist/musician/architect/etc by analyzing it compared to its peers. The distinction between "A" and "not A" is an essential component of this methodology.

As the creator of all things, God doesn't allow for this contrast so all you end up doing is utilizing an unfalsifiable presupposition.

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For those atheists who say "prove God exists, there is no scientific evidence", I would remind them and point out that any scientist will tell you that lack of evidence does not disprove existence.
This is similar to the first one. Yes, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. You'll get no argument from me on that. However, as Christopher Hitchens said, "that which can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence."

If we had to take seriously every assertion that couldn't be proven conclusively false, we'd be here for a while.

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We had zero evidence of the Higgs-Boson yet for many decades the majority believed the Higgs Boson existed.
This is a unique spin on the more common idea of equal faith being required for both science and religion. I like it.

The reason why it isn't a valid comparison boils down to a single word: evidence.

The HB wasn't just some wild speculation grounded purely in scientific ignorance, it was postulated as a falsifiable explanation for previously unexplained data. "Falsifiable" is an extremely important term because science can never prove anything right. Ever. All it can do is prove something wrong. If it tries long enough to prove something wrong and only ends up accumulating a mountain of corroborating results, then they begrudgingly accept it as the best explanation. Theology, by comparison, deals entirely (and intentionally) in the unfalsifiable.

HB also highlights a critical element of science that is absent in theology: predictability. If A is true, then we would expect B, if we don't find B then A isn't true. It's a core component of falsifiability.

The fact that evidence allowed for the prediction of the HB decades before its discovery, all intermediate results only supported the hypothesis and then it was actually discovered is a triumph of the scientific method, not anything that can be used to denigrate that community.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baron Samedi View Post
First, I believe that schools ought to be able to teach most anything they want, if it is supported by the local community. If they're not your kids, it's not your business. That's my take, anyway. If the community wants to teach creationism in the schools, it's their business. I call it "tolerance" to allow people to live they way they want to live, and teach their kids what they want to teach their kids.
I hear you, but I'm a firm believer that the only way to have freedom of religion is to have freedom from religion.

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Originally Posted by Baron Samedi View Post
Third, religion generally is innocent of all the lives it has cost. It's just an often used vehicle for governments to inspire the people to kill and die and destroy for political agendas. Today "for democracy and freedom" is just a better tool to use than "for God and Christianity". Religion is no more responsible for the millions of deaths caused in it's name any more than democracy is responsible for the millions of deaths caused in it's name.

The only 3 causes of these deaths are power, profits, and politics.
9/11, suicide bombers, Charlie Hebdo, abortion clinic murders... these are all religion based, and this is just in the past couple decades.

I will grant you that larger events like wars are usually inspired by other forces, like greed or power, but religious faith is often a critical exploitation by those in command. Yes, Patriotism could also be taken advantage of, but there is nothing quite like being able to summon the support of the most powerful ally in the universe.

I guess my point is that, even if you can find alternate root cause, religion doesn't get extraneous bystander treatment from me.

Looking forward to your replies.

Last edited by Oswlek; 07-14-2015 at 03:43 PM..
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