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  1. #141
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post

    Perhaps you can elaborate, if it so obvious? How are the two words being used differently?
    If you cannot see it...chances are it means you WILL NOT see it.

    Nothing I can do about that.

    You slightly missed the point of my argument. My point was about the inconsistent application of that language to the conclusions. Hence why I called it a taxicab fallacy.

    Relating to Evansaul's "knowing" you concluded: "I do dismiss it, Evensaul, and, frankly, you should also. "I know in my heart"...is code for "I do not know."" (post 112)

    Your application of the warrant underlying personal experience, which applied to Even was flat rejection.

    However, when relating to your own "guess" about the Bible's veracity, you conclude: "so it makes sense to me that they would invent an angry, mean-spirited, vengeful, demanding god to protect themselves from their enemies' gods...which is what they did." (ibid)


    So Evensaul's guess should be rejected, but yours should not?
    I did not miss the point of your argument. You are attempting to change the point.

    But...I understand. That is part of the game. I do see that.

    I guess I am countering R. D. Laing's advice:

    They are playing a game.
    They are playing at not playing a game.
    If I show them I see they are, I shall break the rules and they will punish me.
    I must play their game, of not seeing I see the game.

  2. #142
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    If you cannot see it...chances are it means you WILL NOT see it.
    So...you have no explanation of your claim that they are being used differently?


    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa
    I did not miss the point of your argument. You are attempting to change the point.
    I detailed this objection back in post 122:
    "We can either reject both of your personal experiences and feelings or accept both of them. But to be consistent, we can't reject one and accept one because it suits our conclusion better."


    Do you have anything of substance to add to this thread?
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
    "Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions.” -G.K. Chesterton
    Also, if you think I've overlooked your post please shoot me a PM, I'm not intentionally ignoring you.


  3. #143
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    So...you have no explanation of your claim that they are being used differently?
    Not what I said...nor inferred. What I have inferred is that I can see that you are playing a game. If you were not, you'd easily be able to see the difference. I'm willing to play the game...but if it is a game you want, I'm gonna make the rules, not you.


    I detailed this objection back in post 122:
    "We can either reject both of your personal experiences and feelings or accept both of them. But to be consistent, we can't reject one and accept one because it suits our conclusion better."


    Do you have anything of substance to add to this thread?
    Plenty.

    Do you?

    And if YES...when are you going to start?

  4. #144
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2
    Either you take Him at His word, or you place your own or another finite person's word in His place. What makes you think your subjective guess is valid?
    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    [1] Him!

    So not only do you know there IS a god, you KNOW the god has a gender...and it is MALE.

    Interesting.

    [2] Anyway...any guess is "valid"...as a guess. It may be correct; it may be wrong.
    [1] I base my words on His revelation. God is Spirit and has chosen to reveal Himself in a masculine way.

    https://frame-poythress.org/wp-conte...ontroversy.pdf

    [2] Valid as true? The problem is that two opposing beliefs cannot both be true. It goes against the foundation of logic, the very thing you use to make sense of anything.

    The most critical issue is the truth. Which belief, if any, is true? How do you know (epistemology)?

    I invite you to read chapters 31 and 32 of the following link on the justification of knowledge from a Christian perspective (I use the 'Read Aloud' feature in Microsoft quite often):

    https://frame-poythress.org/wp-conte...gy-Excerpt.pdf

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    Your guess that a god exists may be correct...and IT MAY BE WRONG.

    That is the essence of my argument.
    No, God has confirmed that He is who He says in numerous ways to my mind concerning His Word. Personally, He has also answered prayer and shown me grace and mercy by drawing me to His Spirit. After my father died, I was looking for meaning. I returned to Africa, and I continually had people who believed in God placed in my life - my uncle, my roomie at the place I worked, his friends, other work acquaintances. Then the accident. Then back to Canada. I was skeptical but decided to investigate further. That was over 38 years ago. That is my personal experience that you can doubt, but to me it is real.

    You get to know someone by your relationship with them. Back in the early 1980's, I started reading the Bible. I believed it was what it claimed to be and throughout my Christian life, God continues to confirm to me who He is.

    Let me put it this way - If you don't believe in God and dismiss the evidence of His existence, there is no way of convincing you. The skeptic always has one more "but what if?" in his/her repertoire.

    This example is one way God puts it through the inspired writer of Hebrews:

    Hebrews 11:6 (NASB)
    6 And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.


    If you don't believe He is how are you going to trust anything that He says? You will find a way to dismiss it as an old wives story or a myth. The problem comes when you continue to deny the argument in spite of its reasonableness and logic and ability to make sense of life. Your bias gets in the way.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2
    If you think the Bible is an invention I would invite you to explain away prophecy and see how well your logic and reason prevail about what we do know or is most reasonable to believe.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    Ahh...you are guessing that the Bible is the word of your god...and that its contents with regard to "prophecy" are true without doubt...and then using that second guess to validate the first guess.

    But what if you are wrong in either of those guesses?
    If someone is gracious to you, it can affect you and change you in wanting to be gracious to others. Would you risk ridicule because the message is worth repeating and the grace is worth sharing?

    I have a practical/empirical side of the argument. That deals with prophecy - that has its basis in history. You see, I believe that when you pay attention to the audience of address and the time statements of Scripture (who the author is addressing), then prophecy becomes alive and understandable. The destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 is the focal point of prophecy in the NT and much of the OT. With the history we have available I can show the reason and logic behind biblical prophecy and its fulfillment in detail to what was said. I do not believe you can counter logically but are welcome to try.

    For your benefit, if the God I speak of is who the words claim Him to be, then He is able to orhestrate history. Is that a given?

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2
    I would also invite you to make sense of anything without first having an objective, absolute, universal source of appeal.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    I have no idea of what that means. "Universal source of appeal." Are you supposing a Supreme Court of REALITY?
    Universal - applying to all people.

    The highest and objective authority of appeal, the standard that all other standards appeal to.
    What happens when you don't have one or when it is not universal - applying to everyone?

    Do you have an objective (true, outside yourself) appeal?

    Is your 'ultimate' criteria able to justify itself? If not then the question arises if it is the ultimate criteria. So when you present this criteria of yours, your highest authority - guesses in your case - is it a standard that is universally true for all people or is there something still higher that overrides it? When you appeal to your guess as being no truer (or equally true) than any other opinion you run into the standard that your guess is based on, speculation, your personal feelings, or those of others in the same boat. If the standard is not universal, in that it MUST apply to every other person, then you can't say it is BETTER. All you can say is that you PREFER it to other standards.

    In the case of physical measurements, we have a court of appeal (the International Bureau of Weights and Measures) that contains an accurate standard that disputes are measured against. It is a blueprint we use as our measurement standard - our objective or universal standard for such measurements.

    https://sizes.com/units/BIPM.htm

    In the case of logic we have laws that are necessary, and without them nothing else makes sense (such as the Law of Identity -> A = A). You use logic to communicate and make sense of anything. Is it universal? It has to apply to all or else something could mean anything losing ability to communicate.

    Apply universal to morality.

    If there is no objective 'universal' (applying to everyone) best that we can measure 'good' or 'better' against, then what makes something good? It boils down to your subjective opinion and preference verses my opposing subjective opinion and may the mightier win.

    When there is no best or universal court of appeal (standard/reference/authority/measure) that is best (THE Standard) anything can be pushed, just like Hitler did during WWII or Kim Jong-Un does in North Korea. Go and dispute with him that what he is doing is not best and see what happens. He may very well shortly hold the world hostage. Liberal appeasement policy (give him whatever he asks for; don't keep him accountable), and no backbone, has created the situation.

    Morality hinges on a 'best' measure, not a changing fluctuating one.

    Speaking of liberal, leftist, socialistic societies, China is along the same lines. China (or Russia) is a country who leaders autocratically control the way the rest live. Those in power control the masses throughout history. A progressive leftist liberal based socialist government is more likely to violate its people and make them submit to the whims of the elite, all the while claiming the best interests of the masses. That is the battle happening in the States now. Do you want to bow to such a system - big government? My personal opinion is that Donald Trump may be the only chance you have of turning the tide of big government since it has been left uncheck for so long. Liberal Democrats are bent on socialism in a big way. Give them your money so that they can do what they think is your best interest. Do their ideas make sense? I negatively shake my head every day. Let their bureaucracy get bigger and overreach every area of your life (sorry - my rant).

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2
    If you are willing to do that it would be worth my while to present a case and question the reasonableness of your responses. I leave it in your court as to whether you want to do that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    Peter, we can have a discussion...or we can decide not to. I'll leave that up to you.
    I asked you first - (^8

    Do you want one? Will you continue to engage when it gets uncomfortable because when the foundations (core beliefs) a person believes starts to unravel it gets awkward and very personal for them? Sometimes it turns into a shouting match (situation lost) or ignoring the points the other person makes (focus on the agenda of protecting your precious beliefs at all costs, even when they have no merit - a natural defensive ploy) because they refuse to remove the blinders.

    Jesus said:

    Matthew 7:24-29 (NASB)
    The Two Foundations
    24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. 26 Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.”
    28 When Jesus had finished these words, the crowds were amazed at His teaching; 29 for He was teaching them as one having authority, and not as their scribes.

    Although the underlining significance of these words may be dealing with the temple that stood in Jerusalem that the Jews were vested in as opposed to the greater reality, it is a principle that can be applied to worldviews, most definitely. I think the two foundations are more likely the one invested in Jesus/God versus the one opposing Him.

    If I blow against your foundation, that which everything else rests on, will it withstand the assault?

    If you want me to invest my time is showing you what I know and have reason to believe (regarding proof) I will try. I can lay it out for you and see if I can answer your objections while pushing the sensibility of your worldview at the same time (by contrasting it with the Christian one). My claim is that one of our worldviews can make sense of why what is actually is, and it is not yours. Bold assertion.

    Peter

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  6. #145
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    If we stick with the pure warrant argument, ie should we accept a claim rather than will we, I would maintain (blatantly stealing the idea from others) that the aphorism becomes circular for two reasons.

    1) (not my original point) is that Sagan's aphorism is a claim itself and should require extraordinary evidence since it is covering an extraordinary claim (a claim about the extraordinary has to, by definition be extraordinary). I won't detail this much, but simply to put forward that it falls into that category of claims that suffer internal problems like "there are no absolute truths."

    2) (and more my original point). How do we define an extraordinary claim? I think a good place to start is to say that it is a claim about a subject or a truth statement we don't have common experience with.
    While I still agree the weight of the evidence in question is equal, the weight of the CLAIMS is not.

    1. Maybe the issue here is using "extraordinary" for the evidence in question. If I told you I could shoot lightning out of my finger (or anything supernatural), with only my word as evidence, I think you would be likely to not believe me. If we met and I shot lightning across the room out of my finger and hit you, with that evidence, I think you would likely believe me. Perhaps "strength of evidence" or some such would be better than extraordinary. After all, if I said I just got a cramp in my leg from sitting here typing so much, I'm guessing most people would believe me without needing further "stronger" evidence since it is common and normal for such a thing to happen. If I said I never get cramps because I float in the air instead of sitting on a chair, most people would require much stronger evidence than my word.

    2. Ok, " I think a good place to start is to say that it is a claim about a subject or a truth statement we don't have common experience with. " works for me. In my last post I had only meant that supernatural stuff would qualify as "extraordinary", not that it was the definition. My bad...

    ---------- Post added at 05:28 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:25 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Yes, I do.
    Then how can God be God, and also be his own son, and the holy spirit all be distinct individuals and also just one God?

    ---------- Post added at 05:34 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:28 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Your statement is what I see as self-refuting. You are making a truth claim that you either know is true or it too falls into the category of ignorance. How do you know we all come from a position of ignorance? You just admitted you don't by stating you are in a position of ignorance.
    While technically you could be right, the opposite would be "at least one human does not suffer from ignorance about our shared "reality" and I have never heard anyone successfully argue that. Even if you are correct about God existing at all, there are still many ??? that you may not know about "reality".

    ---------- Post added at 05:36 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:34 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post

    I disagree. Jesus summed it up in two commandments - love God and love your neighbor/fellow human.
    I was more referring to more along the lines of salvation and such.

    ---------- Post added at 05:41 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:36 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Our outer shells, our physical bodies from non-living matter, yes. What about the intangibles, the things that make you distinctly you? If God created us, then life came from the living. Do you think your personality is just what your electro-chemical reactions produce? How does life come from something nonliving?
    I am not seeing any evidence of "intangibles".
    Are you suggesting that brain activity ("electro-chemical reactions") come from some place other than the brain? Like beamed to us through the airwaves. As in "your thoughts do not originate in your brain"?

    Regarding souls (intangible), I realize the Bible speaks of such things. Is there any other evidence?




    ---------- Post added at 05:48 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:41 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Since God is perfect, pure and holy and He created man for a relationship, is one lie, or one theft, or one adultery, enough to prevent you from enjoying His presence?
    Only if God wants it that way, as he makes ALL rules.
    Also, I don't get the "people are free of sin once they die and go to heaven (those that get in of course) and they won't sin ever again. Suddenly people are "prefect, morally"??

    Since God "walks thru time" like we "walk thru air" he knows what will happen, and goes back and forth thru time constantly making these things happen, it almost sounds like OCD???

    ---------- Post added at 06:01 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:48 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Since you are sinning against an eternal Being who created humans to live with Him forever and sin has ruined that,
    1. Had god not allowed the Devil to be in the garden of eden, sinning would not exist. Actually, I would like some one to show that sin does in fact exist and what "it" is in the first place.

    2. Adam and Eve mentally were children and God knew they would "eat the apple" when he put them in eden. Since knows all, he knew they would sin. there is NO question there at all! So God knew where we would end up before it happened and we go through it all anyway....???...
    2a. How about leave the Devil out of eden? Problem of sin solved, man never has to leave eden and always existed there with God! No need for the fallen to be stranded on earth till death/judgement.

    3. If God "can't be around sin, how could the Devil have even been in the garden of eden???
    Last edited by Belthazor; January 17th, 2018 at 07:29 PM.

  7. #146
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    It isn’t going to work, Frank.
    Perhaps instead of him trying to convince you God does not exist, he is trying to get you to convince him God does exist....
    (subconsciously at best I'm sure....)

  8. #147
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Belthazor View Post
    While I still agree the weight of the evidence in question is equal, the weight of the CLAIMS is not.
    I'm not sure what you mean by this.

    How does one measure the "weight of a claim?"

    I suspect, what you mean (given the rest of your post) is whether the claim runs counter to pre-existing assumptions, facts, or understanding. I would argue that that doesn't make the claim more weighty, it makes the "against" column larger.



    Quote Originally Posted by Belthazor
    If I told you I could shoot lightning out of my finger (or anything supernatural), with only my word as evidence, I think you would be likely to not believe me.
    Probably, but remember, part of that is psychology. Squatch has cognitive biases like everyone else that tend to make him discount certain claims outside of their pure warrant. The other part is the warrant, so let's look into that a bit.

    Evidence for:

    1) Belthazor's testimony.

    Evidence against:

    1) Evidence concerning the biological limitations of humans.

    2) Understanding of the germane functions and sources of lightening.

    I think it is important to remember that we do have more relevant evidence to the claim than just your word, which is why we both have a suspicion that I (and pretty much most people) would reject your claim. Now if we didn't have that evidence. If we had no idea what lightening was, or what human beings were, there wouldn't be that same natural propensity to reject. We might still be more or less agnostic (since the warrant isn't very strong), but we wouldn't be completely neutral.

    If I were to tell you that I have a box on my desk now. A claim you don't really have any evidence for (aside from my word) and no real evidence against that isn't psychological (a distrust of Squatch, or the internet, or something), you might not be 100% convinced of the claim, but you shouldn't be 50/50 on it either right?

    Underlying this is an implicit definition of "extraordinary" that says they are claims for which we already have disconfirming evidence. Those claims need strong confirming evidence for sure, not because they are extraordinary fundamentally, but because the positive evidence has negative evidence it needs to outweigh.



    Quote Originally Posted by Belthazor
    2. Ok, " I think a good place to start is to say that it is a claim about a subject or a truth statement we don't have common experience with. " works for me.
    Oh man, I hate to be this guy, but I think I've talked myself out of that definition a little. [Sorry].

    As I was writing the above, I think Sagan might have meant something a little different than just lack of experience. For example, if I were to say that I used to play catchem when I was a kid (assuming you've never heard of it before), I think it wouldn't require extraordinary evidence to support. Even though you don't have common experience with "catchem" it isn't a claim I think necessarily fits into what Sagan is talking about.

    I think he means something we have natural skepticism towards. A claim that makes an eyebrow raise. Setting aside psychological factors, that would seem to indicate claims that we have existing evidence, understandings, or assumptions which would be invalidated.

    In all of the examples of claims I think would fall into "extraordinary" in Sagan's mind, I can't think of one where the rational skepticism isn't based on pre-existing understanding or evidence, but on the nature of the claim itself.

    I suppose something like, "I met a married bachelor" today might be one because it is internally contradictory, but I think most of what we are talking about are claims that counter something we feel we already know or understand.

    Does that definition make sense? Am I missing something?
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
    "Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions.” -G.K. Chesterton
    Also, if you think I've overlooked your post please shoot me a PM, I'm not intentionally ignoring you.


  9. #148
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Sorry folks, playing catch-up here...

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    From an early age, you were indoctrinated into a belief in the rightness of science, probably as early as kindergarten or first grade.
    It's not a belief in the rightness of science. Did you have science class in school? We had it starting, IIRC, in grade 6, with regular experiments and labs, including many simple discussions & thought experiments about how to observe and reach rational conclusions. It was in no way an indoctrination - the very fact that it didn't start until a later grade (far later than any religious indoctrination begins), when the students are better able to rationally consider and discuss the principles, demonstrates this.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Only later did you learn about the "scientific method" and eventually be able to articulate that "the scientific method is the single most reliable method..."
    The concept of the scientific method being reliable was articulated from very early on in the form of the experiments and demonstrations we took part in as children in the science class, and then later in the chemistry, biology, and physics classes.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    I'm guessing that you also took some time to set aside your early indoctrination to rationally evaluate whether those beliefs impressed on you were truly accurate and rational.
    There was no such indoctrination, and there were no beliefs impressed. The scientific method was taught in a demonstrable way from the get-go. I have to again ask, did you ever receive any science education?

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    And that process is pretty much identical to my progression with my religious beliefs, which you dismiss as arbitrary and problematic.
    Unfortunately, the process is unique to your progression with your religious beliefs, and in no way comparable to how children are (hopefully) taught science, so it's perfectly rational to dismiss it as arbitrary and problematic, for the very clear reasons given.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Believing in observations are fine. But that those observations are extrapolated on and expressed as "laws" of physics that have never and can never change (the immutable part) is theory, which science has not proven.
    This is a gross misrepresentation of how laws are established, and what "scientific theory" means.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    And that seems much more like faith in science, than fact. Yet, you and most people would take on faith that science is right about them being "immutable laws of physics". And that is just one of countless similar scientific theories accepted as fact because of faith in science.
    Again, you are grossly misrepresenting how science is done. Scientists are literally constantly trying to prove any conclusions wrong, and almost every statement a scientist makes that isn't about something as rock-solid as a current scientific theory is shrouded in doubt.
    You seem to think that scientific theories have just been accepted willy-nilly because of faith. This is a common, yet wholly incorrect argument often forwarded by theists with little experience with or interest in learning how science is actually done. Your continued quoting them as being "immutable laws of physics" is a further demonstration of this.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Yes, here we have Dr. futureboy (what are your psychiatric credentials, exactly?) reading the dark recesses of my innermost beliefs, and knowing how they influence any analysis I might attempt to evaluate evidence and arrive at my own religious views.
    Not sure what your point is here. I simply indicated that, since you were indoctrinated from an early age, likely before you had learned how to rationally assess claims, your reassessment is necessarily influenced by your pre-conditioning, and therefore invalid. A true reassessment would require that you completely abandon any beliefs and start with none whatsoever.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    And a significant number of them change their religious views. Some to a minor degree (like me), while others completely change religions or become atheist. And some brought up as atheists become believers. I believe that all supports my argument, as much as you think those who don't change their beliefs supports yours.
    No, it simply demonstrates that sometimes people are able to overcome their early conditioning and honestly and rationally consider the claims before them, and sometimes those who are brought up without religious conditioning fall, for whatever reason, into the same kind of rational failure which leads others to faith.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Wouldn't that make your pixie a deity?
    I guess it would depend on how you define deity. Since the word comes from the latin for god, I would say pixies are not deities - they're simply magical beings.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Irrelevant to this debate, as we're not discussing what purpose a belief in a deity might serve.
    No, it's quite relevant, since the debate is about the (lack of) rational foundation for believing theistic claims. The fact that thousands of cultures throughout history have created their own magical mystery explanations to explain the mysteries they couldn't understand at the time further illustrates this lack.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Well, then you have an obligation to point them out, futureboy, along with an explanation of how the support for their existence is equivalent to the sixty-six books of the Bible, including a host of fulfilled prophecies. Otherwise, your claim can be dismissed as unsupported.
    Who are these "others" you speak of. Show them to me, and the support you continually claim is equal to other religions. I want to see them.
    I find it ironic that you profess to have rationally reassessed your beliefs, and yet here rely on what is nothing more than an argument from ignorance. Your recent responses to Frank about how any doubting is "not. gonna. happen." only adds to this irony.

    ================================================

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Sure: 'They' refers to those people who hold to the idea that if you can't show it, you don't know it.
    So, you're saying that those who agree with the principle that you should be able to demonstrate something before you claim to know it, are claiming to know things without being able to demonstrate them? Could you be more specific?

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    The laws of logic are necessary for any meaningful exchange. These laws are not physical in nature yet without them nothing can be known.
    Again, the laws of logic are merely our expressions of how reality has been observed to function. There is nothing self-evident about it.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    I have not seen anyone give sufficient or logical, rational proof to dislodge these prophecies as false.
    Unfortunately, since you begin with the assumption that what is written in the bible is true, it's perfectly understandable that you would reach such a conclusion.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Yes, abiogenesis does have a lot to do with atheism. Either there is a Creator, or the universe arose via impersonal, mindless, irrational, illogical, unintentional happenstance. You run into any number of problems with this view. Why? How is there something rather than nothing? What is the cause of 'something' if it did not always exist. If you claim it always existed, how do you know?
    Again, this has nothing to do with atheism, and it's not a problem for anyone holding to the atheistic view of "I don't accept your theistic claim". Atheists are not required to assert that the universe arose in any way, or that it has always existed or not. It's perfectly rational to simply say "we don't know", and many atheists do so. As stated earlier, humans' gung-ho drive to have at least some answer, whatever answer at all, is the reason we have religions. Your statements are an apt demonstration of this flaw.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    With panspermia do you believe life always existed or did it have a beginning? Do you believe the universe had a beginning or has it always existed?
    This rapid-fire conflation of multiple different problems is yet another example of a failure to consider things rationally. The origin of life and the origin of the universe are two completely separate issues.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    If you don't know, then you are what is called a weak atheist or agnostic.
    No, it would be called rational skepticism to admit that one doesn't know something for which there is insufficient evidence.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    If you don't know, then you cannot dismiss God as the cause. You can just plead ignorance.
    If by "dismiss God" you mean "claim that God doesn't exist", then sure, to do so would entail a burden of proof which, failing to be met would mean accepting such a claim would be irrational. By the same token, claiming that a God exists without meeting the burden of proof such a claim entails is equally irrational.
    Again, there's nothing wrong with saying "We don't know". In fact, that response is what will lead us to the actual answer - claiming knowledge without sufficient evidence impedes the discovery of the actual answer.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    On the other hand, a Christian is speaking about what they know:
    Again, claiming to know something is not the same as being able to demonstrate it.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    but still you people do not accept our testimony.
    Of course, because the testimony lack the sufficient evidence required to back it up.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    You interpret the evidence through a particular frame of reference (no God).
    Wrong. The evidence is interpreted simply as it presents itself. There is no need to interpret it from a "no God" frame of reference. This is a common misunderstanding of how the scientific method relies on methodological naturalism, and does not assert philosophical naturalism.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    You look for reasons for the universe apart from God.
    Again, this is a misrepresentation of who science is done. The search for reasons for the universe starts with the observable evidence - no reference to God or absence of God is involved.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    I look to the biblical God for my answers.
    And there is the crux of your issue. By starting with the presupposition that the biblical God exists and the bible is true, you cut any opportunity of discovering the true nature of reality off at the knees. This is why, when doing science and rationally considering the observable evidence, we try to limit the amount of unnecessary assumptions we make. Adding assumptions doesn't help, even when it looks like they allow us to quickly reach a conclusion.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    My worldview has what is necessary to make sense of the universe.
    Your worldview asserts, without meeting its burden of proof, that is has what is necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Yours begins with mindless matter, plus chance, plus time and energy. How does that create reasoning human beings? You ASSUME it can.
    No, again, there's nothing wrong with saying "We don't know". You yet again demonstrate the flaw of needing an answer so badly you'll believe just about anything.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    How does the irrational become rational, that which is devoid of intelligence become intelligent? From my worldview, that which is intelligent creates beings that are intelligent. It makes sense. You witiness life coming from the living, intelligent beings creating other intelligent beings.

    You, as an intelligent being, feed the information into a computer that aids it and instructs it in the storage and use of intelligent data. There is INTENT behind the operation of the computer. The information does not arise by itself for no reason and program itself, and that without any intention of doing so. When you see information, you understand there is intelligence behind that information. Yet you claim this is not (likely) the case with the universe.

    How does something that lacks intent sustain anything for countless periods of time? It can't decide to because it is random and chance happenstance. Chance happenstance does not reason. Science is based on rationality. We (as Christians) are investigating and discovering the thoughts of our Creator. E=MC2, or 2+2=4 do not MEAN anything outside of the thoughts of intelligent beings. You have been lead to believe there is ultimate meaning in a meaningless universe. Why would there be? You and most human beings continually seek meaning and purpose in the universe? Why should there be and why do we continue to find it in a meaningless universe?
    While it would be fun to unpack this D.Chopra-esque mess of deepities, you've so aptly demonstrated a lack of understanding of the laws of logic and the scientific method, as well as the fatal human flaw of an insatiable desire for answers however flawed, that I'm beginning to think it would ultimately fall on deaf ears.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    The question is why the universe exists?
    Are you asking how the universe came to be, or are you asking what is the purpose of the universe? If it's the former, then the current and rationally supported answer is we're not sure. If it's the latter, then the question is invalid since it assumes that there is a purpose.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Why is there something rather than nothing?
    It depends on what you mean by something vs. nothing. Have you demonstrated that this is even a coherent concept, and that it's possible for there to even be nothing?

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    I don't miss the mark. I would be glad to have a detailed discussion on prophecy to present the evidence.
    Yet again you demonstrate a failure to rationally consider the concepts being discussed here. No amount of (self-)fulfilled prophecy would suffice to demonstrate that a deity is necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Here is a necessary presupposition - either something without intent cause uniformity of nature or a mindful Being caused uniformity of nature.
    Again, we should try to limit unnecessary presuppositions, which you failed here right off the bat by assuming that uniformity of nature was caused.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Why would something random and happenstance cause anything to continue to function in a meaningful/purposeful wayfor countless period of time, continually?
    I'm sure you'd like to think that such a question is in any way valuable or coherent, but I assure you, it's not.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    I have a necessary reason why it does - an intentional, mindful Being caused this uniformity and purpose, and sustains it.
    I'm not sure you fully understand the concept of "necessary" when it comes to offering explanations of observed phenomena.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    My worldview can. From a meaningful, necessary Mind come other meaningful reasoning minds. From a Personal Being come other personal beings. And this is what we witness.
    So, from which mind did that mind come from? And from which personal being did it come from? *Cue special pleading*

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    This is just the point - it is an interpretation. You do not know all the facts of origins and never will. These facts do not come stamped 13.47 billion years old.
    Again, this is not a problem. The methods in use for interpreting the available evidence have been demonstrated to produce reliable results. Also, there are observable facts which are literally stamped as being 13.47 billion years old. You yet again demonstrate a gross misunderstanding of the scientific method and how we are able to make rational conclusions about the nature of reality based on observable evidence.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Theories are continually being revised or discredited and one paradigm is replaced with another paradigm as pointed out by Thomas Kuhn and others.
    Yes, and that is done by offering sufficient evidence to support a claim. This is not a problem, and is merely a demonstration that we're constantly getting better at doing science.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    You are not neutral, no one outside of an omniscient Being would be unbiased. You funnel everything you believe through a worldview that is built on certain particular starting points that the whole web of beliefs you have are filtered through and hang on.
    You can slant the language to try and show that there's some inherent flaw in the principles of rational skepticism all you want, but it only further demonstrates your lack of understanding of what's actually going on when the scientific method and rational skepticism are used to reach conclusions.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    One instance would be where the atheist argues that God is an unlikely reason for the universe. Their explanation is absurd - blind indifferent chance.
    You're again misrepresenting what most atheists (rational skeptics) hold. Arguing that God is an unlikely reason for the universe does not require that one asserts that it was blind indifferent chance.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Another is when I ask what is the reason for everything existing and the atheist says there is no reason, it just is. Yet, he continually seeks out a reason for everything and says my worldview is devoid of proof.
    It looks like you're again conflating the concepts of "how something came to be" and "what is the purpose".

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    I ask how something can create itself, like how something devoid of intelligence or life can create intelligent beings or living beings.
    Why do you assume it was created?

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    He doesn't have a logical explanation without a mindful being (because logic requires minds)
    Again, logic is merely an expression of how reality has been observed to function. It's not some magical ethereal thing that requires minds to exist otherwise the universe would fall into an illogical heap of chaos.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    but he rules out God as the explanation.
    Yes, since that explanation hasn't met its burden of proof.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Show me the concept "blue."
    Are you referring to the colour of light between wavelength 450–495 nm and frequency 606–668 THz? This is easy to show. The concept of the colour is the mind-state of someone seeing blue or remembering/considering the colour, which can also be demonstrated.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    You operate on things you can't see all the time (the Laws of Logic - explained above)
    Again, logic is merely an expression of how reality has been observed to function.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    so the principle that you have to see to know is false.
    The quote is a simplification of the concept that something must be demonstrated before we can claim to know it. I would've thought this was abundantly clear.

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    Another is the claim from atheists that they do not believe God exists and there is no evidence for God then pleading ignorance of God when I offer to laid down the evidence (They say they don't have a good knowledge of the Bible yet state there is no evidence without discussion of the evidence).
    I'm sorry, but a book is not evidence of a deity.

    ================================================

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    Neither, however, are atheistic "beliefs."
    If an atheist held a belief as completely true without sufficient support - that would indeed be irrational.

    However, I think you'll find that, while "believe" may be the best word, what rational skeptics are actually doing is holding claims as being true to varying degrees of certainty in accordance to the varying degrees of support for that claim.

    Take string theory, for example: it has not really been sufficiently proven, and therefore you won't find any rational skeptics who believe it in the same way a theist believes that a God exists. There are reasons we could think that it's true, but nobody would assert that it is actually true - only that our current understanding of the available evidence appears to show that it might be the case.

  10. #149
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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by PGA2 View Post
    I asked you first - (^8
    Loved this, PGA.

    Yeah, you did ask first...and I definitely want further discussion.

    The chances of us coming to substantial agreement seem remote...but who knows. Some areas of agreement in Internet discussions can surprise.

    As for the rest of your post, there was so much there my mind started to ache...so, if you have one specific item you would like to discuss, please put it forward as a stand-alone and I'll respond. I'll read the entire of this post over again...and if I see something specific I want to comment on, I will.

    ---------- Post added at 12:39 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:36 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Belthazor View Post
    Perhaps instead of him trying to convince you God does not exist, he is trying to get you to convince him God does exist....
    (subconsciously at best I'm sure....)
    I favor discussion with strong atheists...with whom I find myself in substantial disagreement. But with strong atheists...and with theists, I am open to the idea that they might be able to present arguments that change my mind. If Evensaul or PGA can present them...I'm listening.

    ---------- Post added at 12:41 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:39 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post

    If an atheist held a belief as completely true without sufficient support - that would indeed be irrational.

    However, I think you'll find that, while "believe" may be the best word, what rational skeptics are actually doing is holding claims as being true to varying degrees of certainty in accordance to the varying degrees of support for that claim.

    Take string theory, for example: it has not really been sufficiently proven, and therefore you won't find any rational skeptics who believe it in the same way a theist believes that a God exists. There are reasons we could think that it's true, but nobody would assert that it is actually true - only that our current understanding of the available evidence appears to show that it might be the case.
    My remark, as you can see from the full post, applies only to strong atheists who assert with certainty that no gods exist...or more specifically to those who claim, "I BELIEVE no gods exist."

    ---------- Post added at 12:46 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:41 PM ----------

    In my off line discussion with Squatch, I mentioned that I would return to this thread and clear up one matter I discussed with Evensaul.

    I acknowledge that I CANNOT KNOW that Evensaul has not had a personal revelation of some sort from a GOD that might exist. If such a revelation has happened...it might very well be felt as "inner knowledge"...which is what Evensaul asserts.

    I am skeptical because this "inner KNOWledge" or "KNOW in my heart" comes up often with Internet theists in these kinds of discussions...and I see nothing to convince me it is so. BUT IT MIGHT BE. I acknowledge that.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    My remark, as you can see from the full post, applies only to strong atheists who assert with certainty that no gods exist...or more specifically to those who claim, "I BELIEVE no gods exist."
    Doesn't everyone hold to a belief with certainty that at least some claimed supernatural entities do not exist? What's wrong with being a strong atheist with respect to, say, Zeus or Odin?

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post
    Doesn't everyone hold to a belief with certainty that at least some claimed supernatural entities do not exist? What's wrong with being a strong atheist with respect to, say, Zeus or Odin?
    Let's try this again:

    My remark, as you can see from the full post, applies only to strong atheists who assert with certainty that no gods exist...or more specifically to those who claim, "I 'believe' no gods exist."

    A "strong atheist" is commonly defined as someone who asserts that NO GODS exist...or who asserts a "belief" that NO GODS exist.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post
    It's not a belief in the rightness of science.
    Of course it is.

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post
    Did you have science class in school?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post
    We had it starting, IIRC, in grade 6...
    Hold on. Your indoctrination into a faith in science began waaay before the 6th grade. Probably as early as kindergarten or first grade, you were exposed to science "facts", theories and how smart scientists were at discovering and proving things, during classroom activities such as reading books and watching movies. That doesn't even include what you may have seen at home on tv and at the movies. It was indoctrination, early and often. I'm stopping here until you reassess and modify your position on this issue, because otherwise any further continuation is pointless.
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    I am skeptical because this "inner KNOWledge" or "KNOW in my heart" comes up often with Internet theists in these kinds of discussions...and I see nothing to convince me it is so. BUT IT MIGHT BE. I acknowledge that.
    Agreed, certainly there is no necessary reason (given what has been presented) that you must accept his claim. Rather, I think what is relevant to this thread is whether he has some warrant for the claim. If so, then holding the position is rationale. If he held it solely for psychological reasons with no warrant, then it would not be rational.





    Quote Originally Posted by future
    It was in no way an indoctrination - the very fact that it didn't start until a later grade (far later than any religious indoctrination begins), when the students are better able to rationally consider and discuss the principles, demonstrates this.
    Quote Originally Posted by Even
    It was indoctrination, early and often.
    There seems to be some disagreement here. The problem comes because indoctrination is a pretty loaded term.

    I'd like to ask each of you a question, hopefully for clarity.


    Future: Were you taught in school to consider other methods of arriving at the truth asides from the scientific process? Or, more specifically, were you taught the criticisms and flaws with the scientific process?

    Even: Let's presume the answer to the above is no and future even concedes that it was "indoctrination." So what? Does that mean his acceptance of its process is completely unwarranted? That it is irrational?
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
    "Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions.” -G.K. Chesterton
    Also, if you think I've overlooked your post please shoot me a PM, I'm not intentionally ignoring you.


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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    Let's try this again:

    My remark, as you can see from the full post, applies only to strong atheists who assert with certainty that no gods exist...or more specifically to those who claim, "I 'believe' no gods exist."

    A "strong atheist" is commonly defined as someone who asserts that NO GODS exist...or who asserts a "belief" that NO GODS exist.
    And I'm trying to get you to consider that even regular agnostic atheists can hold strong atheistic positions. Your desire to focus only on strong atheists, which btw is not clear from your post # 88, is fairly pointless considering you're unlikely to have a valuable discussion with someone defending such beliefs.
    So again, while I agree that strong atheism can be problematic in terms of having a burden of proof to support the claim that a god or gods don't exist, the point is that everyone, even yourself, probably holds some strong atheistic position(s). And this is where an interesting discussion can be had about the implications of the acceptability of holding some strong atheistic positions and not others.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch
    Even: Let's presume the answer to the above is no and future even concedes that it was "indoctrination." So what? Does that mean his acceptance of its process is completely unwarranted? That it is irrational?
    He can’t summarily dismiss my beliefs and the process I went through, when his own experience with faith in science is similar.
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Of course it is.
    You asserted that, "from an early age, you were indoctrinated into a belief in the rightness of science, probably as early as kindergarten or first grade". I can honestly tell you that I received no scientific education in kindergarten or first grade. Nobody tried to indoctrinate me to believe science was right.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Yes.
    Then you agree that science education, when done properly, is taught from a perspective of promoting rational consideration of its principles and not from a perspective of irrefutable dogma?

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Hold on. Your indoctrination into a faith in science began waaay before the 6th grade. Probably as early as kindergarten or first grade, you were exposed to science "facts", theories and how smart scientists were at discovering and proving things, during classroom activities such as reading books and watching movies.
    I'm sorry, but none of what you're describing could be rationally considered to be indoctrination into scientific beliefs, although I fully understand why you attempt to describe it this way. Nobody asserts that whatever scientists say is true (newsflash: they don't need to assert it - the scientists can demonstrate it).

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    That doesn't even include what you may have seen at home on tv and at the movies. It was indoctrination, early and often.
    In what way is being exposed to, whether intentionally or not, a world in which scientific facts are presented and discussed on television or in movies the same as indoctrination? You seem to think that the "facts", as you unsurprisingly scare-quoted them, whenever they're presented to anyone, are asserted incontrovertibly in an attempt to indoctrinate. Being exposed to scientific facts which are supported as true before one is able to fully understand the details of why the fact is true does not mean one is being indoctrinated. Whenever scientific facts are presented, it's always together with a wealth of support available to anyone who wishes to question the facts. It goes back to why children's science education usually begins only when they're older and are better able to rationally consider and discuss the concepts being presented to them, which clearly proves that it's exactly not indoctrination.

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    I'm stopping here until you reassess and modify your position on this issue, because otherwise any further continuation is pointless.
    Indeed. If you want to compare the religious indoctrination children receive from parents and other theists around them any scientific information which they may experience before they can fully process it, then it's clear further continuation is pointless.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post
    And I'm trying to get you to consider that even regular agnostic atheists can hold strong atheistic positions. Your desire to focus only on strong atheists, which btw is not clear from your post # 88, is fairly pointless considering you're unlikely to have a valuable discussion with someone defending such beliefs.
    So again, while I agree that strong atheism can be problematic in terms of having a burden of proof to support the claim that a god or gods don't exist, the point is that everyone, even yourself, probably holds some strong atheistic position(s). And this is where an interesting discussion can be had about the implications of the acceptability of holding some strong atheistic positions and not others.
    If you are going to re-define "strong atheist" there is no way I can discuss this with you rationally.

    A strong atheist...is a person who asserts "there are NO gods" or who asserts a "belief" that there are NO gods.

    In my #88, I said, "Some atheists assert that they have no "beliefs"...but some do. The "beliefs" of those atheists are as suspect as the "beliefs" of theists.'

    I stand by that firmly...and do not see your problem with it.

    I am an agnostic. Here is description of my agnosticism:

    I do not know if gods exist or not;
    I see no reason to suspect gods CANNOT EXIST...that the existence of gods is impossible;
    I see no reason to suspect that gods MUST EXIST...that gods are needed to explain existence;
    I do not see enough unambiguous evidence upon which to base a meaningful guess in either direction...

    ...so I don't.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    If you are going to re-define "strong atheist" there is no way I can discuss this with you rationally.
    Again, strong atheism is often used to refer to someone who denies the existence of some specific deity (but not necessarily others). I'm sorry you think I'm trying to redefine it to devolve into irrationality, but how else would you describe the position of believing the claim that a specific deity, such as Zeus or Odin, actually doesn't exist? It seems there's a potential discussion to be had here about the term's over-all usefulness. Again, your insistence that we discuss only strong atheists who assert/believe that no gods exist whatsoever is fine, but pretty pointless.
    Further, I've already asked a couple questions which you could easily respond to in order to continue the discussion about theistic beliefs in general, should you wish to do so.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    In my #88, I said, "Some atheists assert that they have no "beliefs"...but some do. The "beliefs" of those atheists are as suspect as the "beliefs" of theists.'
    I stand by that firmly...and do not see your problem with it.
    Then I ask you to please re-read my posts, since nowhere have I explicitly expressed an issue with this statement, but merely clarified my position/opinions and attempted to continue the discussion with you in a direction that I feel better reflects the goal of the topic at hand. Remember, not every single response to one of your posts is a refutation of it, and not everyone is always arguing against you.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by futureboy View Post
    Again, strong atheism is often used to refer to someone who denies the existence of some specific deity (but not necessarily others).
    No...it is not.

    A strong atheist is a person who denies the existence of all gods. Look it up.

    I'm sorry you think I'm trying to redefine it to devolve into irrationality, but how else would you describe the position of believing the claim that a specific deity, such as Zeus or Odin, actually doesn't exist?
    I would call them people who deny the existence of specific deities.


    It seems there's a potential discussion to be had here about the term's over-all usefulness. Again, your insistence that we discuss only strong atheists who assert/believe that no gods exist whatsoever is fine, but pretty pointless.
    I have not said that. I am willing to discuss any kind of atheist, theist, deist, or agnostic.

    The reason we are discussing "strong atheists" here is because you questioned my original remark.



    Further, I've already asked a couple questions which you could easily respond to in order to continue the discussion about theistic beliefs in general, should you wish to do so.
    What questions are they. I apologize for missing them. You can just refer me to where you asked them of me.



    Then I ask you to please re-read my posts, since nowhere have I explicitly expressed an issue with this statement, but merely clarified my position/opinions and attempted to continue the discussion with you in a direction that I feel better reflects the goal of the topic at hand. Remember, not every single response to one of your posts is a refutation of it, and not everyone is always arguing against you.
    I am merely standing by my original remarks, futureboy. Nothing more.

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    Re: Theistic beliefs are not rationally justified

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    No...it is not.
    Sure it is. Here's one example: https://www.thoughtco.com/strong-ath...atheism-248406

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    I would call them people who deny the existence of specific deities.
    And some would refer to them as being strongly atheistic with regard to that specific deity. Sorry.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    I have not said that. I am willing to discuss any kind of atheist, theist, deist, or agnostic.
    Dude, you literally just said that you can't have a rational discussion with me because you thought I was trying to re-define strong atheism. So, the actual content of the discussion I was forwarding was irrelevant to you just because you disagreed with my use of the term.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    The reason we are discussing "strong atheists" here is because you questioned my original remark.
    First of all, your original remark in post # 88 made absolutely no reference to strong atheism. Second, my response to you in post # 148 didn't refer to strong atheism in any way either, and specifically brought up issues surrounding beliefs and the nature of beliefs vs. evidence, in general. Your response to that completely ignored the statements I made regarding beliefs vs evidence.
    So while I understand that you now say your post # 88 was intended to refer to only strong atheists as commonly defined, my very first response to it had already introduced other topics related to the question of beliefs vs. evidence based on the statements you made referring to atheists in general, and not specifically strong atheists. I get that you wanted to clarify that post # 88 was about strong atheists, but in doing so you have completely ignored any further discussion about the topics introduced afterwards and the questions posed to you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    What questions are they. I apologize for missing them. You can just refer me to where you asked them of me.
    Like I said, please re-read my posts. If you want to continue the discussion I raised in my very first response to you, you should at least want to/be able to do that in order to understand what I was talking/asking you about.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Apisa View Post
    I am merely standing by my original remarks, futureboy. Nothing more.
    I'm sorry, Frank, but the way in which you have ignored not only the general direction of the discussion I've been trying to have with you but also specific questions to you, as well as your terse and somewhat dogmatic dismissal of any further considerations of what it means to have strong atheistic positions really makes it seem like you're just out to bicker. Again, not everyone is out to argue with you.

 

 
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