Gods don't exist.

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gregster
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 13:54

The existence of one thing seems at least clear: The print-out of Wikipedia's "list of fallacies" hanging above your computer... but your selection process seems a bit random.
My assessment was not about differences of personal interests or sharing premises or not, but your continuous belittling assumptions about non-theists (which is not a homogeneous group at all, as you should know), which stand in the way of fruitful discussion. Let me know when you have proven god's existence or opened your mind a bit more, whatever comes first.
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Cuadrix
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 15:26

I think i have already made my point clear: atheists (usually) hold that god doesn't exist as a premise.
You forgot something VERY critical. We hold that premise because of all the evidence that goes against any magic man in the sky existing.
You on the other hand hold the premise that a god exists BECAUSE you was indoctrinated. Yes, I'm being bold, and yes, I'm pretty damn confident that is the case. You, like 90% of all the religious people I have talked to, will most likely reject this claim even though it's really why religion still exists in the 21st century.
Do you not see their limitations yet? It is a thing from the present and it relates to the capacity to evolve new arguments: their past selves can no longer "evolve" thoughts, only their present selves possibly could (if only they had not blocked themselves with a new premise, of course)
Read that slowly again. Do you not even realize how splendidly well this applies to yourself and virtually every firmly believing religious person on this planet? You are the subject of your own argument, yet don't realize it. It is pure irony. Why? You already assume that you are right and cannot be wrong about your beliefs, therefore anything I or anyone will say will actually just go through the other ear solely because of your own bias. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.
You also can't say we lack in the ability to think deeply about a theological subject when you yourself are not deeply thinking about the reason you are religious in the first place, or why religion exists and the histories behind the countless religions that have risen and fallen.
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Gio
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 17:36

gregster wrote:
29 May 2019, 13:54
The existence of one thing seems at least clear: The print-out of Wikipedia's "list of fallacies" hanging above your computer...

That's a good one :lol:

I am trying to keep this debate organized and that means keeping it within the boundaries of actual reasoning.

your continuous belittling assumptions about non-theists (which is not a homogeneous group at all, as you should know), which stand in the way of fruitful discussion.

I am not "belittleing" atheists. I am simply saying that they hold premises that have to be accounted for when defining the scope of the debate (in example: no biblical arguments that rest on a premise that the bible is valid per se). Curiously enougth though, this care when bringing up arguments is usually a demand from atheists themselves, so i don't know why you would object to it and try to force me to bring up christianity or some deep theological concept to the debate. Is it so you can refute it for the sake of refuting something?

Cuadrix wrote:
29 May 2019, 15:26
You forgot something VERY critical. We hold that premise because of all the evidence that goes against any magic man in the sky existing.

"A magic man in the sky" is another strawman of yours. I have never proposed such a comic figure here. And regarding the phrase "all the evidence": i am yet to see this "all the evidence" phrased into some some arguments of yours. Please phrase them accordingly if you wish to discuss it.

You on the other hand hold the premise that a god exists

I am not holding any premises that a god exists as this is the very question of the debate. What i am doing is bringing up arguments for it (which is different to considering it a premise, or rather something that would be valid by itself). If i were considering it a premise, i would be rejecting the debate itself, not presenting any arguments (hence why i said that atheism usually blocks one from dedicating enougth time to ponder about deeper theological concepts, but not from the possibility of debating this fundamental question we are debating).

BECAUSE you was indoctrinated. Yes, I'm being bold, and yes, I'm pretty damn confident that is the case. You, like 90% of all the religious people I have talked to, will most likely reject this claim even though it's really why religion still exists in the 21st century.

Come on, not another argumentum ad hominem. What good do you think attacking the person formulating the arguments rather than the arguments themselves could do for the debate itself?

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

And who judges how extraordinary a claim or an evidence is? This is just a personal judgement. Richard dawkins, a very famous atheism advocate was questioned in a debate by the moderator over what kind of proof would change his mind about gods existence and then he said that even if a "900-foot-high Jesus strode in and said "I exist, here I am"" his mind likely would not be changed. Is this type of blindness that you are proposing here? Because the debate stands and the arguments will stand regardless of the debate changing the mind of anyone involved. Single debates usually don't change anyones view. The whole of persons life is what ammounts to his/her current beliefs.

the reason you are religious in the first place, or why religion exists and the histories behind the countless religions that have risen and fallen.

These seem to be all very interesting topics. Perhaps we can discuss them on another topic? Because they don't seem to be able to change the "possibilities" for the existence of a god (or not).
gregster
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:17

I am not "belittleing" atheists. I am simply saying that they hold premises that have to be accounted for when defining the scope of the debate (in example: no biblical arguments that rest on a premise that the bible is valid per se). Curiously enougth though, this care when bringing up arguments is usually a demand from atheists themselves, so i don't know why you would object to it and try to force me to bring up christianity or some deep theological concept to the debate. Is it so you can refute it for the sake of refuting something?
I really have no idea what that even means in this context. I cannot keep up with all the assumptions you are making without evidence (wait, who shouted 'god!' now?). Interestingly, you still keep talking about atheists exclusively, while I speak about a whole spectrum of beliefs.

And somehow you seem to still be trying to establish some ranking of thinkers, asserting that non-theists are somehow limited and need to be accounted for while theists have reached some higher form of enlightment. Of course, there are individual limits of the intellect, but I am sure that non-theists are pretty much aware that this is a general human trait and not limited to their belief system.

Edit:
btw, I don't think that Dawkins said it like you described and that this could qualifiy as an argument for anything, really. Iirc, he actually agreed to someone else's assertion that he would probably think he would be hallucinating and then that whole thought was already over and the discussion went into different directions - to me, this approach seems like the most rational first step when suddenly confronted with a 900ft Jesus. When you are then able to exclude hallucinations and all other possibilities, I am sure that a man like Dawkins could be persuaded. I surely would - but let's wait for this to actually happen.
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Cuadrix
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:32

The whole of persons life is what ammounts to his/her current beliefs.
That doesn't invalidate what I said. I only want you to realize one thing for now, so here we go;

The above is without a doubt true. Now what causes it to be true? The answer is external influence from external sources such as books, ideologies, friends and school.
BUT, there is one special type of influence that is the CORE reason why a religious person born into a religious family usually becomes religious; that influence is indoctrination.
So why do I call it indoctrination instead of "teaching developing children about the ultimate truth"? The answer is very simple; a developing child cannot rationally(fully) process any of the information that he/she is being fed with, which leads the child to ultimately end up sharing the same beliefs as his/her parents, which then progressively harden as the child grows into an adult, specially when their adopted beliefs never receive any real criticism. This cycle almost always leads to the rejection of opposite viewpoints due to biased views toward their own beliefs and it also leads to willful ignorance. This can specially be seen with muslims, christians and jews more often than the others. This is also why all the world's major religions still exist in the 21st century despite all our scientific breakthroughs since Aristotle. This is the influence of indoctrination.

Edit:
I am too tired to respond to anything today, so I'll leave a link to a real educational video for you. Watch and widen your perspective on everything;
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xqCkx6WQBE
Last edited by Cuadrix on 29 May 2019, 18:54, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:33

Agnostic NOT EQ Atheist
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Cuadrix
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:39

joedf wrote:
29 May 2019, 18:33
Agnostic NOT EQ Atheist
Ofcourse. That's because they deal with two different things.
Gnosticism/agnosticism deals with knowledge, and theism/atheism deal with belief.
An atheist can be both agnostic and atheist, which is what the overwhelming majority of atheists are.
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Gio
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:40

gregster wrote:
29 May 2019, 18:17
Interestingly, you still keep talking about atheists exclusively
Nope. The part of the argument that concerns atheists is under constant attack by you (hence why the term atheist is more commonly being brought up). In fact i actually stated explicitly that this problem of having to sort the scope of arguments so that we can debate under the premises that both sides can agree on also occurs on theist debates:

Gio wrote:
29 May 2019, 12:19
Apart from that, all the problems or fallacies that atheist and agnostic thinkers could face, would certainly also apply to theist thinkers (although some might not be able to realize it).
And they do. Debates between two or more christian sides, in example, have different possibilities of arguments than debates between shia and sunni muslims. I don't see how you can still not see the obvious problem of atheism being a denial of theist premises, and the obvious consequences of this denial for the debate between atheism and theism proponents.
____________________________________

gregster wrote:
29 May 2019, 18:17
And somehow you seem to still be trying to establish some ranking of thinkers, asserting that non-theists are somehow limited and need to be accounted for while theists have reached some higher form of enlightment. Of course, there are individual limits of the intellect, but I am sure that non-theists are pretty much aware that this is a general human trait and not limited to their belief system.

This is absolutely NOT my point of view. Recheck my reply below.

Gio wrote:
29 May 2019, 09:56
But I see no shred of evidence that being a believer is even a prerequisite for the ability to think deeply... of course, many people are not really into thinking, but that seems to be a general human trait, religious or not.
Atheists CAN think deeply. They just (usually - Do i really need to keep this word here all the time?) won't think deeply about any theological concepts that relate to a god. Doing that would be a contradiction to their own premises as atheists, and would prompt them to discard the whole question at hand early on (either that or ignore formal logic).
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:56

Cuadrix wrote:
29 May 2019, 18:32
the CORE reason why a religious person born into a religious family usually becomes religious; that influence is indoctrination.
First, let me thank you for a more well formulated post (this topic was getting quite a mess with many accusations and a lack of real argumentation).

I still understand your argument to be an attack on religion (rather than an attack on the idea that god exists), but if i am wrong, please allow me to rephrase the argument (or propose an equivalent one): "god doesn't exist because any god is a fruit of indoctrination". Is this your argument? Can i now proceed to reply to it? or is it supposed to be really against the subject of religion only?
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 18:58

I see some claim to be "agnostic atheist", but I still think that's a little "iffy" and is still open to debate.
And categorically you could say the end-result, agnostic and atheist can claim similar or same things... But then you have things like "strong" and "weak" classifications...
I always say I am agnostic. period. I don't claim or disclaim god's existence or non-existence.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CzSMC5rWvos

Also, I don't want this topic to become another similitude to what we know as "religion wars"... :p
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gregster
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 19:01

Gio, no, I didn't single out a certain group of (non-)believers. That was you. I stated that there are general and individual restrictions to the human mind that apply to all kinds of people, religious and non-religious, and that there is a large continuum between the extremes.

Atheist/agnostic beliefs are not suddenly there and often not stable during a lifetime. So, the assertion that logic (!) would effectively prevent humans (!!) from hypothetical thinking is ridiculous. Of course, non-theism is most often about the rational rejection or questioning of god's existence (as a result, which often involves a lot of contemplation, thinking and struggling with religious concepts before it is reached), but that doesn't mean that these people are solely restricted to logic (or certain premises) in thinking or behaviour. How are you coming up with this stuff ?
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 19:15

?
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 19:32

I really like Neil deGrasse Tysons atitude. He is humble, and this is a great characteristic of his. He is also very good with wor(l)ds :lol:

joedf wrote:
29 May 2019, 18:58
Gio, no, I didn't single out a certain group of (non-)believers. That was you.

I said atheists hold a specific set of beliefs that evoke premises that have to be accounted for when guessing the scope of arguments that could be agreed on. That is not demeaning of atheists at all, in fact i have presented evidence to support that it applies to other groups, with the only difference that the premises uphold by these groups are others.

Them you claimed something about me making a "ranking of mental qualities" and generalized my ideas to claim that i said atheists are "less capable of reason". I never said that. That is NOT my argument.

So, the assertion that logic (!) would effectively prevent humans (!!) from hypothetical thinking is ridiculous.

I don't get why you keep shifting the arguments to mean something else. I was pretty clear about the scope of the argument and how it applied in practical terms, and i commented on it more than once. In general, atheists are not willing to invest their time and effort into learning new theological concepts and then sorting out all their implications. Is it that hard to understand or even agree to this obvious fact? Or are you implying that an atheist is equaly inclined to deeply ponder (days, months, years) about theological concepts as a theist?
gregster
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 20:16

Obvious fact?
Of course, there are many atheists/agnostics who came to their state of mind by exactly doing that, thinking deeply about theological concepts and their implications - how do you think believers become atheists? By cross-pollination? In fact, most atheists and agnostics I know are former believers and church members (or still in it exclusively for the folklore part) who often made a long way from the faith of their childhood to their current state of mind. That might be a bit different in certain parts of the world where atheism was part of the political doctrine for a long time and small children didn't end up automatically in some church, like it's custom where I live.

On the other hand, there are many religious people who just believe and don't think deeply at all about their faith. Others have completely different understandings of their faith, although they might be members of the same church or faith. Apart from the fact, that deeply pondering for years is no guarantee for quality or a certain result. That means, there are certainly deep thinkers on the whole spectrum with possibly different motivations and focuses, but certainly willing to invest their time because these questions affect their lives in a fundamental way. So if you are talking about "an" atheist that doesn't say anything about "the" atheist you might been talking to. In my experience, many atheists have thought much more about faith than certain believers. The thinkers/non-thinkers watershed might actually be at a completely different location than you are thinking. It might we worth to think about this a bit.
It would be certainly a shame to dismiss the personal histories of uncounted number of atheists/agnostics by asserting that are/were not willing to ponder about their faith in a substantial way, because it's simply not true!
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Re: Gods don't exist.

29 May 2019, 22:35

I don't see the need for argument here, but I will mention that "most" such as a statistical argument is not the appropriate approach here. Although I may agree or disagree with some of the points made, I might as well say "most tend to agree that correlation is a valid argument"... a circular argument for ridicule... :P

I am glad to see that everyone here is still relatively constructive but I have to admit that I feel a bit of "heat on the rise"... :? Please tone down the "you, not me" or whatnot :? :(
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gregster
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Re: Gods don't exist.

30 May 2019, 00:54

Good point, joe, but I see the validation problem already in "the obvious" facts... we should stay away from such broad generalisations about whole groups of discussion partners. If this is not possible, I doubt that this discussion in the given setting has any constructive future. I am pretty sure that there are multiple possible fallacies hidden in this rhetorical approach...
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Re: Gods don't exist.

30 May 2019, 10:50

I agree :+1:
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Re: Gods don't exist.

03 Jun 2019, 11:05

I too am quite disappointed with the path this discussion is taking. A very unimportant side argument (as in incapable of giving any insights into whether a god exists) of mine is being used to bring major controversy to this debate and is taking over a big portion of the discussion (not to my liking really). Gregster and i cannot agree to whether atheists and theists are (or are not) equaly willing to invest their time and effort into the mental investigation of profound theological concepts with aims to spiritual evolution. To me, this is still a very obvious fact.

Now, let me state clear one last thing: i will NOT make another reply in here about this side argument of the future dispositions because i think i have already discussed it to the exhaustion for any reasonable debate. Gregster and i disagree on this point, but that is a fact of life and we have to move on. So, anyone willing to, feel free to make a final post about this subject of my side argument. I will not reply to that in this topic. I am much more interested in moving on with the main question of this topic (whether a god exists) and i think that if anyone sees as something important to keep on debating this side-topic he/she should open a topic specifically to discuss "the possible benefits of having a religion or faith" or something like that.

EDIT: On a second thought, i am not going to repeat my arguments in this post.
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Cuadrix
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Re: Gods don't exist.

03 Jun 2019, 23:49

Gio wrote:
29 May 2019, 18:56
I still understand your argument to be an attack on religion (rather than an attack on the idea that god exists), but if i am wrong, please allow me to rephrase the argument (or propose an equivalent one): "god doesn't exist because any god is a fruit of indoctrination". Is this your argument? Can i now proceed to reply to it? or is it supposed to be really against the subject of religion only?
Again. Why are you saying "god"? Why do you expect me to know what you are talking about? Use your gods name or just say "a god", as I'm not referring to any specific gods but rather deny the existence of all such things due to simple and obvious facts.

And no; My argument is not an attack on religion. I just stated an obvious fact which can clearly be seen to be true. That was my only intention. Could't care less if someone considers logic to be an attack?
I have also observed that you are looking things from the inner perspective (from behind the religious goggles), while I'm looking at what's actually happening on the surface.
Due to the reason above, you don't seem to understand why I'm talking so much about religion, so let me explain;

Religion is the reason these mythical deities exist in the human civilization and it's why people of each generation become religious depending on the geographical location of the said culture and religion.
Just like you were most likely indoctrinated into your beliefs and therefore sincerely believe in your specific god, a hindu sincerely believes that his god is real and every other god is false. Just the psychological observation of this indicates the unlikeliness of any such beings existing, not to mention the fact that religion and the gods that are believed in themselves survive due to indoctrination going on.
My argument isn't that gods don't exist because they are all "fruits of indoctrination".

My argument is as follows;
The external evidence against any gods/goddesses existence is far greater than what you religious people think is evidence for your specific god out of thousands worshiped.
Just looking at how religious people become religious in the first place is indication of this. Not to mention how beliefs of the overwhelming majority of religious people contradict with each other , and how they also contradict with what we observe in reality/nature; referencing back to what I said about belief about souls or ghosts. All this serves to prove that gods don't exist.
"deep theological concepts".
It is clear that you are too stuck in your deep thinking of these so called theological concepts that you aren't able to deeply think about anything else related to it, such as what I have mentioned above.
One must deeply think about ALL related subjects from a neutral perspective, and not just one. That is why most atheists are atheists, because we have been to both worlds, unlike the overwhelming majority of religious people who have never even bothered questioning their beliefs.
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Re: Gods don't exist.

04 Jun 2019, 13:29

Cuadrix wrote:
03 Jun 2019, 23:49
Again. Why are you saying "god"? Why do you expect me to know what you are talking about? Use your gods name or just say "a god", as I'm not referring to any specific gods but rather deny the existence of all such things due to simple and obvious facts.
Just take it that this whole debate is about "a god" or "any god" unless explicitly stated otherwise. Minor typographical errors should not be confused with arguments.

Just a curiosity: Do you have some strong christian background by the way? It seems that you are most uncomfortable with things like capital G's and the lack of an article before the nouns in other peoples phrases.

I have also observed that you are looking things from the inner perspective (from behind the religious goggles), while I'm looking at what's actually happening on the surface.

An Ad hominem fallacy. Please refrain from using these types of "arguments", they are personal attacks and quite ofensive (much more so than the "generalizations" i was accused of).

It is clear that you are too stuck in your deep thinking of these so called theological concepts that you aren't able to deeply think about anything else related to it, such as what I have mentioned above.

Another Ad hominem fallacy.

One must deeply think about ALL related subjects from a neutral perspective, and not just one. That is why most atheists are atheists, because we have been to both worlds

Atheism is not a neutral perspective. It is a fixed position: something that if hold onto as a belief, will subject you to a lot of premises. And if you do value the perspective from someone that has "switched sides" before, i will let you know that for about 3 years in my life i have defined myself as an atheist. Therefore i have seen the world from the perspective of an atheist and really, that is exactly why i think atheism is basically a sheer negation of almost everything around us (our reality and the way it presents itself to us) in a huge effort to support the preconceived view that everything is of a "purely mechanical" nature. Mathemathics, albeit clearly present in the workings of our universe, is by itself "inert" in the sense that it cannot produce our reality alone. Therefore, it is NOT alone.

unlike the overwhelming majority of religious people who have never even bothered questioning their beliefs.

I can't speak for others, but i actually question my beliefs very oftenly. And theism is a very logical conclusion for me. That's why i have actually presented some up-to-date pro-theism arguments (But it looks nobody in here is willing to discuss them at the moment. Personally, i wonder if this is because people in here haven't questioned themselves enougth to seek some prior debates by some of the more experienced people defending each side. Not saying this as an argument: just wondering really, as i think that the prospect of debunking the main theist arguments should be of great interest to any atheism advocates).


:arrow: Now for the most important part:

Religion is the reason these mythical deities exist in the human civilization and it's why people of each generation become religious depending on the geographical location of the said culture and religion.
Just like you were most likely indoctrinated into your beliefs and therefore sincerely believe in your specific god, a hindu sincerely believes that his god is real and every other god is false. Just the psychological observation of this indicates the unlikeliness of any such beings existing, not to mention the fact that religion and the gods that are believed in themselves survive due to indoctrination going on.

The external evidence against any gods/goddesses existence is far greater than what you religious people think is evidence for your specific god out of thousands worshiped.
Just looking at how religious people become religious in the first place is indication of this. Not to mention how beliefs of the overwhelming majority of religious people contradict with each other , and how they also contradict with what we observe in reality/nature; referencing back to what I said about belief about souls or ghosts. All this serves to prove that gods don't exist.

That inductive reasoning is not a "proof that gods don't exist" at all. The negation of a lot of previous hipothesis has absolutely no influence over whether a new hipothesis is true or not.

You are talking about the genesis of religion as being purely the result of indoctrination, but this is not the case really. There are actually two ways through which people may come to believe in something: one is by having personal experiences and the other is by believing that the experiences others around us have reported may indeed be true. The funny thing when you realise this fact is that not only religion, but really everything you think you know, including the ideas about the workings of our universe, are basically over 99% a result of experiences actually had by other people. People have said and you have absorbed, this is what makes over 99% of what you believe to be true (and everyone else is like that). And that is not wrong at all: You would actually be more primitive than a caveman if you were to only believe in truly personal experiences.

Now, i know that talking about specific religions is not a good idea for this debate, but i will do it nonetheless to use as an example. And as promissed, i am specifically stating now that i am taking the following from the main christian faiths:

There were 12 apostles. All of them claimed to have witnessed Jesus performing many miracles, and they were with him basically the entire time during his ministry on earth (and for 40 days after he rose from the dead). That being said, all 12 apostles died in horrific ways exactly because of their faiths and all of them maintained to the very end that the teachings of Jesus were indeed true. If they were lieing, wouldn't at least one of them have admited to it before the prospect of death for their faiths?

That may not be a formal "proof", but perhaps it is all the extraordinary evidence you need.

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