Reasons not to believe in God

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by Magical Realist, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    which is why i asked how the rest of the world fits into this wonderful world view

    So, he would be hard pressed to find any examples of good people doing bad things in say communist china/russia or Khmer Rogue Cambodia or some other place where great effort went into eradicating religion from the public scene?

    If he is not daring to discuss the role of religion in inspiring an evil person to do good you can't really say that in any meaningful manner.
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  3. Balerion Banned Banned

    Is that what you asked? I'm having a hard time finding where exactly you posited this question.

    I think you underestimate the religious fundamentalist framework of Soviet and Chinese Communism. These ideologies are in many ways modern counterparts to ancient monotheism. Particularly the brands that sought to destroy local religions. It's not the destruction of religion and the rise of reason that they sought, it was the elimination of ideological competition. The very act of razing religious culture and replacing it with something else by force is a very religious thing to do, after all.

    Who says he hasn't? We're talking about one sentence the man uttered, the point of which was discussing the negative impact religion has on society. You come off like a partisan dittohead who can't accept a criticism without wondering aloud why the same criticism has not be leveled at the other side, instead of having an honest discussion about the matter at hand. I'm sure he has discussed the very spurious claim that religion makes people behave better, and likely come to the same conclusion any objective observer has, which is that it doesn't. This would leave your point moot, but when's that ever stopped you?

    But then again, I suppose that's what apologetics are.
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  5. The Marquis Only want the best for Nigel Valued Senior Member

    Still not with you. I said no such thing, and your response quoted me.

    Neither. I have pointed out that atheism need not be a belief system at all, but one more characterised by a lack of belief.
    You've made it quite clear that the distinction is lost on you. Very well... no need to keep reinforcing your lack of understanding. I get it.

    Oh, alright. If you're asking if I have given it the same sort of consideration in the past I've given to anyone trying to tell me there was a flying pig outside my window, then yes, I have.
    If you're also asking if that kind of deep consideration crosses my mind before I close the door on them, then yes, it does.

    You've just made the most salient point I've ever seen you make.

    Scratch, scratch.

    Heard of, never read in any depth. In which case, yes, probably just a coincidence.

    Of course, I'm operating here under the assumption that you have, and that your opinion is that there is a similarity... but from what I've seen, your comprehensive and analytical powers aren't really worth much. So i'm sure you'll forgive me if I don't read too much into it.

    I'm not "trying" for anything.
    If you feel a need to create a persona to post here, then by all means, please do so.

    Well... actually, I was called out the other day for "trying" to be funny. So I suppose that, sometimes, I don't "work".
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  7. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    Uhhhh ... what?

    Unless you are Steven Weinberg you haven't been paying attention ...

    Thats fine but the moment you leave behind the atheism of your atheistic brethren chairs, tables and stones and instead start offering explanations to contextualize the claims of theists (or explain "what they are really on about") you bring something different to the discussion

    On the contrary its becoming clearer you are talking about the former and not the latter ...

    BTW noted that you are talking about ideas derivative of russel's teapot

    I guess we are making progress then.

    Its only taken you about 5 posts and the good part of two months to make the learning curve

    I take it your inability to comprehend how your values are part of a social continuum (much liek anyone else who holds an opion in the human race from any period of time you care to mention) is yet another aspect of your conceited nature

    conceited people are not particularly famous for heeding details ...

    given your extrapolation about my use of emoticons just one post earlier the only question I am asking at the moment is whether your conceited nature will allow you to see the irony in this

    just so
  8. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    well you offered a statement of his that appears blatantly false ... I'm just testing the waters with his assessment (or your opinion of his assessment ) of the other part of the human population in order to see if there is a shred of credibility for you to fall back on

    so the khmer rogue is actually a brand of theism.
    how In-ter-rest-ing .....

    Its quite clear its more an apt example of just another pea brained atheist saying something stupid when they get hot headed and emotional.

    Plenty of more credible evidence on what actually motivates a good person to perform bad acts.

    Hell, the simpsons, even satirized it.

    I guess from here you will try and float some horse shit ideology about how aspects of the Milgram experiment are not pertinent to atheism since it has as a core value (oops thats right, you also imagine atheism has no values ... so I guess we are in for a double dose of horse shit for you to talk your way around that) a non-linear model of authority.

    Whatever form it takes, I can guarantee that it will have the same aroma as your border line cesspool ideas about how the Khmer rougue is simply another branch of religion

  9. Balerion Banned Banned

    By obfuscating and pretending to ask questions you never actually asked? One would think you'd opt for a more direct approach if your position was truly as strong as you say it is. :shrug:

    I didn't say the Khmer Rouge was a brand of theism. I said that Soviet and Chinese Communism had the framework of a religious ideology, and in many cases (particularly Stalinism) even worshiped demigods. North Korea is another example of a society that is officially irreligious, yet is really just one giant religious cult. It even had (prior to Kim Jong-Il's death) a sort of Holy Duality, with the father and the son both ruling (in that order) despite the father having been dead for decades.

    But I guess we'll overlook those two examples (three, now) in favor of the one I didn't mention. Just like it's interesting how you talk about Communism's sometimes violent relationship with organized religion while failing to mention what those same regimes often did to retard science and medicine. Not to mention how Pol Pot--much like his Communist brothers--was under the assumption that his actions were predestined and ordained by some vague conception of heaven. But, as I say, I guess we'll just overlook these uncomfortable truths.

    It has its rhetorical value, sure, but that doesn't mean it isn't true, or at least virtually true.

    You strike me as a person who could neither explain what it is you just linked to, nor how it contradicts what I--or anyone else--has said so far. Nor could you explain the fatal flaws of the interpretations of the tests. In other words, this is just another pea-brained theist throwing links at the wall in hopes that someone smarter than them can pick up the slack.

    Wait, you're trying to link the Milgram experiment to atheism now? That's one hell of a curveball. I'm not even going to try to guess what that imaginary correlation is. If you feel the need to elaborate, by all means, please do.

    As for your intentional misconception of atheism, well, we've been down this road before. It's simply the opposite of theism. You and an ancient Greek solider are both theists, but there is no core concept of theism aside from the belief in at least one intervening god. Would you say that you and the ancient Greek soldier share the same worldview? Obviously not, because he would likely be a polytheist, believing in the Pantheon, where as you are a monotheist, likely belonging to some fringe denomination of Christianity. So what does it mean to be an atheist beyond the belief that there is no intervening god? Nothing. You have to clarify much further than that if you want to find common ground, if there is indeed any common ground to be had. In other words, being an atheist is not the opposite of being a Christian, it's the opposite of being a theist. And since there is no atheistic analog to Christianity, there's no parallels to be drawn.

    I never said it was, but thanks for reminding everyone how much of a dishonest person you are. Saves me the trouble of having to say it.
  10. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    You doofus.

    The milgrim experiment explains why "good people perform bad acts".

    Not the emotional rants of an atheist trying to play their authority in physics as some sort of wild card to surmount their obvious short comings in philosophy and sociology (more than likely in order to lend political support to Israel, of all things )

  11. Balerion Banned Banned

    No it doesn't. And that wasn't the question. But thank you for proving my assertion that you actually don't know jack shit about the Milgram experiment (can't even bloody spell it, apparently), its criticism and failings, or anything other than the broadest, inaccurate description you foisted from some anti-atheist website you no doubt troll. You're a copy-paste champion. Thank you also for failing to support your claim that it somehow makes a statement about atheism. Knocking down your flimsy claims is like punching through tissue paper.

    Now stop trolling and either go away or grow up and join the conversation properly.

    Ad hominem. You've literally got nothing left to say on the subject, do you?

    I guess not.
  12. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    Its apparent your style of debate never goes beyond "you are wrong" with a complete absence of explaining why you think so ... much less why you think you are right.

    Actually the reason for my brevity and getting straight to the point is because its a bit tiring to shovel your horse shit around the forums

    While you probably knew he has no academic credentials in sociology or philosophy, you probably didn't know he was a vocal jew, eh?

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  13. The Marquis Only want the best for Nigel Valued Senior Member

    Oh, I have. Mostly.
    Just do yourself a favour and go back to have a look. You quoted me, and then posted a response to something someone else said. That's the second time I've had to point that out. It's becoming par for the course with you.

    Oh, I'm sorry. Are we not permitted to do that? I mean if you think you're the only one permitted to go off these little... tangents... then please make the rules clear.
    Here's a little hint... if you want people to respond exactly to only that you've said, then do them the favour of displaying the same courtesy.

    Is it? Really?
    To who?
    What former and latter? You're not even coherent anymore.

    Another one? No idea what you're talking about. Still, I suppose it's quite gratifying to know that there are others who think as I do. Again, under the caveat that you know what they're talking about.

    No, we really aren't making progress at all. You still haven't demonstrated any understanding of the underlying point, and instead seek only to highlight trivialities.

    Heh. And you aren't conceited, I suppose.

    But, to reply, I guess what you're saying then is that because some writers you read and I haven't have made similar points, this points to me being conceited and proves a lack of understanding of... er... the "social continuum"? That's quite a stretch.
    All I said was "probably just a coincidence", and you still can't let it go?

    Take a look at yourself, LG. If you're going to come in here and accuse me of conceit, arrogance or what have you, with the inference that you do not see these things as being "good", then perhaps you should take care not to display those qualities yourself.

    No, I'm not seeing any irony at all. I'm not using emoticons. I'm not displaying any "persona", I've already mentioned that.
    What irony?

    I could go into this particular subject (personas) in more detail, but ... you know. Been done, and I've spoken about it to people far more intelligent than you. You have nothing to offer me.

    Heh... oh dear. Completely missed it, didn't you.

    Look, LG. You've become quite boring.
    Philosophically speaking, you're rather unsophisticated, and you're more a chore to respond to than a challenge. In fact, if being boring were a national sport, you could bore for your country.
  14. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Again, who are these "good people" and "bad people"?

    By what standards is someone a "good person" and another a "bad person"?

    Again, nonsense.
    If they'd be truly good people, nothing could sway them. Not even religion.
  15. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Only if we keep the quotation marks.

    Otherwise, we're up to our necks in the problem of inherent nature.
  16. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member


    The expectation that people who claim to believe in or know God should be good people is fairly common.
    This is evident as we can casually observe how disappointed people tend to be when those who claim to believe in or know God, don't seem like good people at all.

    What I'm interested in is the justification for this expectation.
  17. Balerion Banned Banned

    These people are parents who disown their son because he's gay, or beat their daughter to death because she's not acting like a proper Muslim. You have this absurdly naive belief that good people are incapable of doing evil, and then have the balls to demand of others an explanation for why your childish fantasy shouldn't be everyone's default worldview?

    I would say their motives have a great deal to do with it. I'm not a believer that acts alone define us. Could a father who tries to beat the gay out of his son because he fears for his eternal soul truly be called a bad person? I'm not so sure.

    What on earth gives you that idea? Where could you possibly have gleaned this from in your life? Do you really believe people are so one-dimensional? That even the best of us aren't capable of cruelty and wickedness, that the most evil of us aren't capable of charity and kindness? What about the murderous gangbangers who feed poor families at Thanksgiving in America's ghettos? What about Hamas and their charity work? I mean, grow up already.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2012
  18. Balerion Banned Banned

    Yeah, like I said, in the west that's a common misconception, based on observations of certain religious groups. It's a shallow myth. I don't think anyone who lives in the Middle East or now in Russia where the Church has become so intertwined with Putin's dictatorship, or in Africa, would simply assume that religious people are good. There's no plausible way such a belief can take root in places where religious violence exists, which is nearly everywhere in the world. I don't expect such a myth has much traction even in places where it does exist. You might hear such a thing said in a secular New York, but that same person would almost certainly use the term "bible-thumper" with disdain when referring to large swaths of the South, equating such faith with racism and bigotry.

    You're projecting again. Just because WYNN is disappointed when she meets a grumpy theist doesn't mean everyone is. Not everyone shares your naivete.

    I mean, really, I don't know who these "people" supposedly are. Well, actually that's not true: I know it's you. I just don't know who you're alleging these people to be.

    Hey, you're the one who feels this way; ask yourself the question. Are you incapable of introspection?
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2012
  19. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Uh. Are you not dismayed over the behavior of (some) theists? Your posting history suggests that you are.

    I have some ideas of my own, I've been sharing them. I also want to hear what others have to say on the topic, to see whether perhaps they have fresh, other insights to offer.

    Well, then you're not sure.

    Then your notions about "good people" and "bad people" are so confused and so mixed that any person could be anything.
  20. Balerion Banned Banned

    Yeah, but not because they're theists. I held no naive notion that because they believed in God that they were somehow better people.

    You starting from a flawed premise, which is that anyone really believes that theists are good people because they believe in God. I don't know anyone who actually holds that to be true.

    Way to avoid the topic. What a joke.

    I don't know what you're trying to say. Stop trying to win the argument and express yourself clearly.
  21. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    You started from a flawed interpretation of what I said.

    This is what I said:

    I think that those people who claim to believe in God, should be good people; not that they universally are.
    I think that those people who claim to believe in God, should care about others; not that they universally do.

    I am certainly not alone in this.
  22. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Back to the problem of inherent or innate nature, again.

    What is a "good person", what is a "bad person"?
    Are some people innately good, so that they can rightfully be called "good people"?
    Are some people innately bad, so that they can rightfully be called "bad people"?

    The phrases "good person" and "bad person" suggest that there is such a phenomenon as an innately good person, and an innately bad person.
    This yet has to be shown, though.
  23. Balerion Banned Banned

    My interpretation was not flawed. You operated from the assumption that theists are good, otherwise you wouldn't be disappointed to discover that they aren't. You're asking why anyone would have that perception, and I answered that it's a common misconception in the west probably based on the squeaky-clean images of certain Christian sects, particularly the Mormons. I also said it's not a particularly strong myth, as the same people who might subconsciously believe that theists should be good people would also know that certain types of theists are not good people at all.

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