What Do People Know About What They Pretend to Discuss?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Tiassa, Nov 15, 2017.

  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Jan Ardena:

    Yes, they do. But look what I was responding to. You wrote about what the "culture of atheism does not like".

    According to the definition you just gave, the "culture of atheism" is no more than disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God. In other words, we know that atheists "do not like" to believe in God, and that's all we get from that. But you talked about atheists not liking "to view [themselves] as not, or uninformed". There's nothing about being informed or viewing oneself as being informed in the definition of atheism you just gave.

    It follows that you're assuming that there is a wider "culture of atheism" that goes beyond the bare definition you just gave. I pointed out to you that, whatever that culture is, it is not a monoculture. Atheists aren't a robot army, all sharing the same views on everything. Like I said, the only guarantee is that they all fit your bare definition, just quoted.

    I see. Your comment was not so much about a generic "culture of atheism", but was rather a comment on your perception of iceaura's and my particular attitudes? Correct? If so, then why generalise?

    Not because I'm an atheist. Because it's a matter of common courtesy and it's about the acceptable standards of reasonable discourse.

    If I claim that "Theists all have three arms" and you say "No they don't", do you think it should be up to you to prove me wrong, or up to me to show at least some evidence to support my (rather extraordinary) claim? At the very least, I'd say I should be obliged to produce at least a few examples of theists with three arms, in support of my thesis.

    It would be almost effortless for you to refute this particular claim, for example by pointing out that you yourself are a theist and you (presumably) have less than three arms. But it's not about how easy or hard it might be to justify the negative of the claim. Rather, it's a matter of common sense and even good manners that the person making the positive claim has the onus of supporting it, in the first instance.

    So, in context: if I were to claim "God doesn't exist", then it should be up to me to justify that claim, in the first instance. It would be bad form for me to make the claim and expect you to prove that God exists (i.e. expect you to prove me wrong). Of course, in the real world I don't make the claim that God doesn't exist. On the other hand, in the real world you do make the claim that God exists. The onus is therefore on you to try to support your claim, in the first instance, not for me to prove you wrong.

    I already accept that theism - the belief that God exists - exists. I also accept that it is possible that God exists (which is what I think you meant to say there). But you go beyond the possibility. You assert actuality. That is the claim you need to support.

    I'm not sure what you're referring to? Which inferior idealistic notions?

    You're welcome to your opinion.

    There's a whole thread in which for hundreds of posts you failed to produce a single thing. The closest you got to evidence was to say that you agreed with all of William Lane Craig's philosophical arguments for God, none of which constitute evidence.

    Why not? Is the evidence so subjective that one must already have come to the conclusion prior to evaluating the evidence?

    What evidence? There's no evidence to reject, so far. Not from you. You haven't presented anything.
    What evidence do you find convincing? (A waste of time asking you, I know, or you would have already put it in the thread dedicated to that question.)

    You insist on repeating this misrepresentation, regardless of how many times you are explicitly and carefully corrected. Why is that? I understand that it might make you more comfortable in yourself, but it's really a lousy way to engage in a discussion. It shows that you're willing to ride roughshod over the truth for the purpose of scoring a pyrrhic rhetorical point. Who do you think you're fooling? And is this what your theist ethic calls appropriate behaviour - this continual dishonesty?

    Regardless what you believe about ear wiggling, you can demonstrably wiggle your ears. That is, if I didn't believe your claim then you could, in principle, present objective evidence to back up your claim (e.g. a video of yourself displaying this talent).

    In contrast, you believe in God, but you can produce nothing to demonstrate that this God of yours exists as a real thing, separate from your subjective belief.

    It's kind of like you claiming you can wiggle your ears, and then when asked "Show us, then!", you merely respond with "No!" So maybe you can wiggle your ears; maybe you can't. The best we can say is that no factual basis for your claim is apparent.

    Empty words on your part. If there was actually something wrong with what I wrote there, you could explain what was wrong with it. Instead, there's just unsupported assertion after unsupported assertion from you that I can't be right, that I'm wrong, that I have no idea what I'm talking about, etc.

    Don't you see how this kind of knee-jerk dismissal of inconvenient arguments does nothing to help your case and everything to damage your credibility?

    As I said, belief in God is in no way "fundamental". It is a complex web of belief built on prior belief built on prior belief. The fact that you have no apparent awareness of the really fundamental beliefs that you rely on to support such a complex notion such as a belief in a God merely emphasises just how superficial your understanding is about how your own beliefs (about anything) actually come about. This is one area in which learning some science could potentially help you.

    I have no idea what you mean by that. New information about what? The fact is: before you decide to believe in God, you already have lots of beliefs about all kinds of relevant topics, some of which I listed in my previous post. Many disparate prior beliefs are necessary for it to be possible for your to hold the belief in God, in fact for such a belief to even make any sense to you.

    Sure. A person's beliefs about God can change as a result of their experience, new information they acquire, the persuasion of other people, and so on and so forth.

    No. He merely has to let go of the idea that his God concept represents something that exists as a real object in the world.

    To become theist, one first has to be aware that such a belief system is available. In other words, one must first learn about the concept of God. The final step is starting to believe that the concept describes something that exists as a real object in the world.

    That's how it works.

    The sentences "I believe in God" and "I hold a belief in God" are synonymous. If you want to try to split this particular hair, you'll need to try harder. Insults are no substitute for argument; you really ought to have worked that out by now.

    More insults, I see. This time it's the assertion that atheists lack the capacity to comprehend that God exists. Ho hum.

    I'm an agnostic atheist, and I'm interested to find out whether or not God exists, but it's not because of my lack of intellectual ability, I assure you.
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    You're attempting to split hairs again. It doesn't matter to the basic question "how" God exists. If things exist because God exists, so what? You're still asserting that God exists. If he didn't, there would be no things.

    But on that other point: is there anything other than God that exists in this special way that God exists, different from the way everything else exists? If not, then isn't this just an ad hoc special pleading for God, in order to avoid certain logical arguments against God's existence that you'd rather not have to face up to?

    You squirm and you wriggle and you play around with words constantly - anything to avoid using the words in the normal ways that everyday people use them when they discuss the idea of God/god/gods.

    We wouldn't want people to believe in the wrong God, would we? No, we must try to convince them to read the right scriptures, and obey the right religious codes and agree to live their lives under the oversight of the right religious authorities.

    Exactly. To say something useful about ear-wiggling, a demonstration of ear-wiggling would be a good thing to look for, early on. Anecdotal claims about the existence of an ear-wiggling talent only take us so far.

    Wrong. We're all in the business of manufacturing beliefs, all the time. The process is largely inaccessible to our consciousness, which is why you might feel like your beliefs spring out of nowhere, fully formed.

    You're talking about something that comes after the belief. You're talking about trying to justify the belief to yourself. "What if someone were to ask me why I believe this? I'd better have some good arguments, just in case." To be fair, it can be an internal error-checking process, in the best-case scenario: "Why do I believe this? Can my belief be justified, obectively? Let me check..."

    A lot of beliefs - especially foundational ones - go completely unexamined, though. That is, they are never questioned. Once the belief is there, it is accepted as part of the background of the psyche and never rigorously tested against reality. It's very very easy to find examples of closely-held beliefs that turn out to have no basis at all in fact, or that are actually counter-factual.

    It says something useful about you that you don't worry about that stuff. It's another noteable personal trait that we can add to the list of things that explain why you continue to hold these unsupported beliefs that you have.

    I wonder whether you are equally unconcerned about your political opinions, or your moral ideas, or your opinions of other people, to mention a few things at random. That is, it would be interesting to know whether this is a compartmentalised blind spot or more of a generalised deficiency.

    I think it's the old choice between realism and comfort. Given the choice between being comfortably deluded and confronting an often uncomforting reality, I tend to land on the side of choosing what is real over what makes me happy. You might call that needing to be in control. Alternatively, you might say that it's recognising that control is an illusion that can easily turn into a delusion.

    When it comes to evolution, those who refer to the theory as a religion are almost exclusively people who turn out to be very into religions of their own. It's a bit hypocritical to criticise others for following a religion if you're devoted to one yourself, wouldn't you say?

    The other pertinent observation is that those who refer to the theory of evolution as a religion are almost exclusively people who are uneducated in science in general, and in particular are people who demonstrably have no accurate understanding of the theory itself.

    Accepting a scientific fact has very little to do with indoctrination into anything other than an understanding of what science is and how its methods generate reliable knowledge.

    These people who refer to the theory of evolution as a dogma can be safely dismissed. This is another example of subjective belief utterly failing to conform to objective reality.

    Calling evolution a religion is approximately equivalent to calling Newton's laws of motion a religion, or calling the periodic table of the elements a religion.

    Weasel words. Nobody can know anything that is outside their comprehension, by definition.

    The only way to find out what the word "God" means to any given person, theist or atheist, is to ask them to explain what it means to them. Comprehension will then depend on what kind of answer (if any) is forthcoming, and the hearer's own capacity to understand the answer.

    You assert that no atheist can possibly understand the majesty of what God means to you, but that's just another empty claim from you. Who knows? You might even believe your own rhetoric on this, but it remains just that.

    The ear wiggler, even if never able to wiggle his own ears, can still gather enough evidence to establish, beyond reasonable doubt, that ear wiggling is a real phenomenon and that there is more evidence accessible to him than mere anecdotes about ear-wigglers.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
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  5. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    I am. I can comment on your theism from a record of your posting that goes back years now, for example.
    Says the typical overt Abrahamic theist, demonstrating their standard rhetorical approach on a science forum. Misrepresent, then attack.
    So your rhetorical tactic of deflection by talking about what things are "like" was - as noted - dishonest.
    There are several true theistic positions. Not all of them are - as yours is - fundamentally dishonest.
    No, you weren't. You were trying to establish the bogus term "culture of atheism" as having a real referent, which it does not.
    That's dishonest.
    Then you were using that supposed "culture of atheism" as a basis for personal attacks on atheists.
    That's standard overt Abrahamic rhetorical tactics, the fundie two-step, on this forum.
    Argument from evidence is not indoctrination.
    You are trying to make equivalent assertion from revelation and argument from evidence - "level the playing field", in your terms.
    The reason people like you want to refer to such theories as religions is fairly obvious: your tactic of misrepresentation to set up personal attack goes better with an established misrepresentation, something you don't have to work for.
    When you project the desire for a "level playing field" unto others, as you did above, you make that clear.
    I can learn a great deal of what it means to a given theist, by paying attention to what they say about it.
    You are confusing what it is like with what it means.
    You are also forgetting that most US atheists were Abrahamic theists for years. They can remember what their theistic belief was like.
    Your true position as presented here is fundamentally dishonest, and on this forum you project this internal state unto others. That may be why you apparently don't care whether what you post is right or wrong - whatever "works" in a shitfling. But neither growth or understanding is possible from such a position
    - - -
    They would not be able to make that assessment, unless they possessed the necessary familiarity with the biochemistry etc.

    In that example you have a simple reality to deal with, see - mistake, on your part. Best go back to Darwinian evolution - there, you have a large US media-supported body of established misrepresentations to hide behind, helping you avoid accountability to reason.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
    James R likes this.
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  7. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    It wasn’t a definition it was an observation that went with the observation that is characteristics of the OP. I am fully aware of the definition of atheism.

    Not every atheist is characterised by the OP. It seemed to be calling out specific types, like the ones who hang out here. There definitely is a culture. For the purpose of discussion, we’ll call it an atheist sub-culture. Ok?

    It was a critique of a specific subculture of atheism, of which Iceaura, and yourself, among others, appear to be fully paid-up members.

    It’s the only answer, or response, you can give.
    And that is due to you being an atheist.

    I am a vegetarian, and part of my reason is due to the suffering of innocent animals, just to pleasure our pallets. Because of my position, I cannot accept any situation where animals suffer for that.
    My position/worldview, determines my reasoning, as does yours.

    No need. I know I have two arms.
    If you proceeded with your claim, there would be no discussion. Just like there is no discussion now, only your opinions.

    I do back my claims, but it is simply a case of you not accepting them, because you are atheist.

    If you tried to convince me that the animals did not suffer in preparation for them to be eaten, you’d have no chance. That is how you are with regards to atheism.

    You’re not going to accept anything positive about God, and I’m not going to accept your atheism as sound, rational, or intelligent.
    Any convincing that is to be done to create that possibility, has to come from acceptance. Not science, not philosophy, and not religion.

    Why would you state it, if you couldn’t give some account, which stem from being an atheist?
    If you didn’t claim, and kept it to yourself, nothing would change, because for you, there is no God that you see, or observe. That is the only reason you could seriously have, to make that claim.

    On the contrary. It would be honest of you.
    I would accept, that for you God doesn’t exist, and go about my business. But you can’t leave it there. For some reason you need your position to be be right, and all others wrong. Hence the OP.

    Firstly, I have never made that claim.
    Secondly, that claim is about as important to make, as, “I can wiggle my ears”.
    You need to pay more attention to what I write.

    That implies I demand you to back your claim. I never have, because I understand that you are an atheist, and it is perfectly understandable why you could make that claim.

    I think you interchange “theism” with “religion”. Especially the type that actively seek to recruit new members.

    Where have I made that claim?

    I’ve made no claims with you. I have discussed why for me it is obvious why God Is, and why it is obvious for you, there is no God. That’s as far as we can go, because you’re not interested in discussion. You only want to justify your position.
    To sum up, our discussion is about positions, not God. If I want to talk about God, to an atheist, it has to be one with an open mind. Meaning that he/she understands that they can only see it from their position.

    So we come back to the opening post, and its possible reasons why.

    You seem to need to be right by any means necessary.

    You have no intention of really listening to what is being said. You just jump in with objections, because you have to be on top.

    The fact is, you’re not on top, because you have nothing to offer.

    You automatically think atheism is synonymous with science, technology, and reason. But it isn’t.

    This sub-culture is in a permanent state of a type of anger and frustration, because you know you have nothing to offer with regard to the atheist position, because ultimately, it is nothing but a lack, or refusal to believe in God.

    davewhite04 likes this.
  8. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    Go on then!
    Enlighten me.

    But you’re understanding is atheist.
    Sub-culture atheist.

    There you go with your arrogant self again, trying to control both sides of the narrative, so you you can keep in the discussion.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    I mean what I said.

    They can make the assessment.
    No non-ear-wiggling biochemist can not know whether or not they are properly correct, until they have the experience. For the ear-wiggled, biochemical analysis is of no real importance.

  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Ah. So you are defined by your inability to see animals as food, and you spend your life denying what you know is true (to apply your logic to yourself.) Your culture of meat deniers, of course, tell you that you are wise to do this, despite any evidence to the contrary. You must live in a constant state of anger and denial.
    At least you have stated you are not open to ideas that conflict with your beliefs. Atheists are generally more open-minded than that. Show an atheist a picture of God and he will say "I need more proof than that." Pray to have a lightning bolt hit a tree - and then see just that happen - and said atheist will say "OK, that's starting to be proof that God exists. Let's try X and see if that works, too."
    So you have to deny science, philosophy and religion and just "accept?" OK then. The flat earthers will be very happy to hear that.
    Of course it isn't - because atheism is a LACK of a belief. A lack of something can't be synonymous with something completely different.

    Now, on the other hand, most theists have to oppose some science, because things like plate tectonics conflict with their beliefs.
  10. RainbowSingularity Valued Senior Member

    religion has no authority to discuss science ?
  11. davewhite04 Valued Senior Member

    Which post? or name?

  12. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    And it's the same as many theists's.
    Without it, they cannot explain ear wiggling.
    Not without the knowledge.
    They can know when the explanation is incorrect. They have the knowledge necessary, and can compare the explanation with that knowledge.
    Which - according to your own posting - is the same as saying only you know what it really feels like to say what you say, and you feel that feeling.

    Fine with me. Not sure why you keep insisting on that, though.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2019
  13. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Your posts have explicitly addressed all "atheism" and every "atheist". For years now.
    - - - -
    Projecting again.
    Misrepresentation, leading to personal attack - the overt Abrahamic theist posts on a science forum.
  14. davewhite04 Valued Senior Member

    Jan Ardena:

    I think it may be the way you talk to people. Wanting to sound superior for some unspirital way. I come off with that trait too, but I've worked on it. If you don't know what you are defending or talking about you look false, or if people are continuously cherry picking quotes you've forgot about... just tell the truth from your reality.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2019
  15. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    He's posting dishonestly, in bad faith, with an agenda of personal attack - as before, consistently.
    That is typical of the overt Abrahamic theist posting here.
    And that bit of knowledge - direct observation - is part of the context for replying to this:
  16. davewhite04 Valued Senior Member

    What if I was an overt Abrahamic theist?
  17. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    No, James, had that sufficed you would not have needed to ask.

    That is to say, you would have picked up on it long before now.

    James, one of the problems of textbook conflict de-escalation is when person attempting that mitigation is a participant who has no credibility. I get that you claim to understand, but it is demonstrable you don't. Over the course of years, you should have picked at least some of this up. Instead, you're just trying to tell people what they need to say in order to satisfy you, but you can't even do that properly compared to your history of missing the point

    You might as well just be honest and admit you're not really distressed by the length of the post but that it makes its case.

    Yes, it is always easy to find such people. And, yes, thus we find no shortage. It just doesn't make any useful sort of sense to cultivate such behavior.

    I disagree this isn't your brand of atheism. Wandering around asking people to come fight you isn't exactly productive, but, again, you've given us an answer, and, yes, it does make sense.

    Good for you, but you're missing the point again. Or changing the subject. Whichever, it's a question of competence or will.

    If I take the moment to wonder if I should leave it at that or explain something more, it's a question of your need; you persistently miss the point, either way. And that's another question, why can you not follow the discussion? When I try following exchanges back, it's just a montage of you missing the point: You are responding to a portion of #162↑ invoking "any excuse" as a reference to your prior retort, and reminding that all you really showed in #111-112↑ was that you don't like theists; in that sense, your response can appear relevant. But that part of #162 is refers directly to one of your excuses, from #154↑: "I reject your initial premise that atheists know pretty much nothing. I accept that this might be your skewed perception." After a while, it would have been easier to just demonstrate the point than keep pretending pride as an excuse to duck out. That is, if we survey the three paragraphs of that portion of your retort, you appear to be pitching a tantrum about getting caught misrepresenting a post. But even that tracks back to your hurt feelings; see #131↑. The thing about the thread being a year old is that your focus on that point is its own change of subject; it's not that I don't get the gist of what Seattle was after, but he was describing circumstances only obliquely applicable, but like I said in #127↑, question, "Why is this all about me, all of a sudden?" (#122↑) is, if not disingenuous, then weirdly detached. It is, like the particular question of the thread age as you responded in #131, a strange tack to focus on a detail of obscure effect for reasons only you really can understand. I mean, sure, pride is clearly a motive, and that is what it is, but inasmuch as you might complain about evidence in favor of a shorter statement you can complain about as unsupported, we might also take the moment to consider the number of posts you've put in compared to making some sort of demonstrative point that isn't wrapped up in your damn pride. It ought to have been easier than pretending hurt feelings and proceeding to consistently miss the point on through today. It ought to have been easier than making excuses for not. Still, that's what happens when trying to follow your distractions.

    Meanwhile, the whole appeal to having [_____] friends is actually metaphorically akin to textured vegetable protein in gourmet; it tastes like whatever one cooks it with, and, sure, it is what it is, but, generally speaking, it doesn't behave or taste like what it purports to imitate or substitute for.

    In this case, sure, but look at the record you leave and the contempt that you hold them in. And toward that end, we can skip a head long enough to wonder—

    —at your perpetual list of excuses.

    Still, though, you mentioned Yazata; see #136↑ above.

    Even by your own definition, James, you're supposed to be better than that. You want me to write your argument for you? To go fish according to my standard? Why? Why would you not support what should ostensibly be an easy argument to make?

    So, which version applies?
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    Just how much do you think I care if they're flattered? To the one, you even quoted↑ me saying religion itself is a complex expression of human psyches, both individual and collective, and I even called it a collective performance art project. Furthermore, we find ourselves back on page one again, noting #10↑, in which I pointed to my own posts in yet another thread, reiterating explicitly that the so-called "God" phenomena in our brains are associated with our perceptive and creative operations, as well as pointing out that humans are neurotic creatures, and thus there are reasons we perceive and imagine gods.

    Nor are those points new. And, while, sure, there are some people who don't necessarily encounter them because I'm just not around the Religion subforum as much as once upon a time, one of the weird things about your performance James is that after seventeen years you behave as if you have no idea who you are talking to or what he has said over time.

    Which, by the way, is why that long post about anti-identification. After so many uses over the years, including recent discussion between us, and it was only then that you let slip you had no idea what you were responding to? I admit, it's unbelievable, but, like your posts at #111-112, it makes a lot more sense reading as if you are simply playing a fallacious game in order to pitch to the fourth wall.

    Which only rings strangely because of your behavior.

    What I would point out is that usurping the throne of prevailing fallacy is no proper solution.

    That's actually the wrong application of the excuse.

    How do those people have so much power over you?

    Why do you let people you know are wrong set the terms of discussion?

    Well, you did ask:

    "Does a feeling of persecution strengthen their faith, in your opinion?"

    And you are the one who just told me:

    "My anti-identifying political behaviour might have something to do with being told repeatedly that I am 'without God', hence 'a-theist', I suppose. We never seem to get past that to the 'So what?' The theist wants to emphatically keep insisting that my belief is wrong, despite the glaring 'dearth' of the requisite proof."

    I admit, it's not convincing, James.

    Then why do theists freak you out so badly? No, seriously—

    —it's almost like you're just serving up, at this point:

    ▸ Any excuse will do, eh?

    ▸ And of course you justify yourself because theists.​

    Okay, then.

    It's quite clear that you don't agree, but so what.

    Again, to what degree do you think I care?

    James, it's one thing to suggest atheists should "have the upper hand in the argument", but around here that's not generally the point. It's one thing to suggest they should, but the question remains why atheists at Sciforums don't, and it's because so much is about bigotry and satisfaction justified according to the principle of because theists.

    Of course you're not as inclined to whatever as you project of someone else. But what, aside from your bigotry, does that fallacy serve?
  19. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    Take a good look at the OP, you’ll find that it’s not about spirituality. It is very much about the “atheist sub-culture.”

    I’m not being superior, I’m just not being inferior.

    What is it that makes me look false?

    Their cherry-pickings aren’t quotes made by me that I’ve forgotten. They’re conclusions they come to, and proceed as though It is something I have said.

    The reason they are the way they are toward is because I tell the truth from my reality.

  20. Thus Spoke Registered Senior Member

    Yes, you're right. I am not a non-believer.

    I believe in life and death.

    —awareness and existence

    —appraisal and apathy

    —pain and pleasure

    —happiness and sorrow

    —triumphs and tragedies

    —events and observations

    —cause and effects

    —rest and motion

    —beginnings and ends

    —today and tomorrow

    —the first and the last

    I believe in the finite.

    I am a finitist!

    ♪ This is it
    ♫ This is it, love
  21. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member


    Here’s a nice chunky price of sub- culture atheism, Dave.

    Let’s bare in mind what all this is in response to. I basically told him he needs to be in control.

    1 Either he thinks the idea of having to be in control, is a solution, or method, to accepting things as they are, over the comforting idea of remaining in comfort in spite of what is real.
    Or there is more to what he is saying.

    What more could he be saying, if that is the case?

    He could be implying that I, due to my theism, choose “comfort” over “realism”. This means I’m not prepared to accept a situation (whatever that is) as it is. I am always looking for the comfortable easy way out.
    He doesn’t do that, he always chooses “realism”. Ooh!

    So ask yourself. How is this response related to the point it responded to.
    It doesn’t .

    This is an irrational, angry response, couched in the pretence of reason, and composure.
    He wants to believe that me, and other theists, live in la la land. We’re idiots, because we don’t think like him. That we are not situated in his reality, which he terms “reality”.

    3, 4..

    Keep in mind what he is responding to. He has been told that he needs to be in control. That’s all.

    He would choose “reality” over being “comfortably deluded”. Notice the evolution of his idea. It’s not just about “comfort”, or “realism”. It is now “comfortably deluded”, and “reality”.

    He says that he tends to land on the side of choosing what is real over what makes him happy?
    Of course, he is implyimg I do the opposite, otherwise why bring it in to the conversation?
    Classic below the radar ad hominem.

    Another case of needing to control?
    Rather than be naturally happy, create your own template of happiness.
    A bit like creating ones own template of God, or theism?

    Atheists like James claims he was a theist at one time, meaning that at one time he believed in God.
    Then he says he realised that there was no God, it was delusional, and left (in a nutshell).
    Now he claims he is an agnostic atheist, because he doesn’t know if there is a God.
    But, he also claims he was a theist, a person who believes in God, but there was no God.

    Can you spot the nonsense?
    He wants evidence of something he is positive does not exist, yet he claim agnosticism when it suits him.

    The sub- culture atheists are like spoilt children.
    They want their cake, and eat it too.

    5 This is a classic manoeuvre.

    He turns it around as though that is what I meant. I might want to call that needing to be in control.

    In his mind, he has killed 2 birds with one stone. He has unleashed an attack on me, and now he has new narratives to bring into any discussion we have, and play it off as something I said. Which will be picked up by all the sub- culture atheists.

    This is what they do.

    When you have some time, have look through any conversation, or discussion, between a theist, and any sub-culteralist, and take in the the discussion. You will see what I mean.
    When they come up against people who can see their little games, they become frustrated, and almost inevitably start attacking.

  22. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Jan Ardena:

    I explained in some detail as to why it has nothing to do with my being an atheist. I talked about matters of common courtesy and acceptable standards of reasonable discourse. Maybe you think you have no obligations in those respects, on account of you being a theist and all (?)

    Then you put the cart before the horse. The reasoning really ought to come before entrenching yourself in a position.

    Well done for missing the main point and instead concentrating on a point that I explicitly addressed in anticipation of your missing the main point in exactly the way you have. You're nothing if not predictable.

    Of course there'd be no discussion for that claim (theists have three arms), especially as made to a theist with only two arms. For that claim, the disproof is right in front of us at the start.

    You completely missed, or chose to ignore, the point of the example, which was about onus of proof, reasonable standards of discourse and just good ol' fashioned politeness.

    The only "backing" you have for your claim that God is real is your assertion, in one form or another, that the steadfastness of your own personal belief makes it so. Your argument for God is: Jan believes in God, so God is real. That's what it boils down to, nothing more.

    We've never really got around to discussing the positives of God, you and I. You're so stuck on pretending you know stuff you don't know that I don't think you'll ever move on from that to discussing God in a wider context.

    Thank you for finally being honest about your inability to keep an open mind, though.

    That's the whole problem here. On the question of God, the only source of knowledge you trust is revelation. Rationality flies out the window for you.

    You missed the point again. Any account I would give would have to stem from evidence, not from my personal beliefs about the existence of three armed theists. That's how it should work, Jan. I realise that this is the opposite of how it works in practice, for you.

    It would be a good thing, in your opinion, for me to demand that you disprove claims that I make? That would be an honest way for me to approach the claims in question, in your opinion, would it? This is just getting weird now. You seem to be all at sea in regards to how to comport yourself in a debate.

    The simple fact is, though, that you don't accept things and go about your business, Jan. You keep coming back here to insist to us all that your God is real, that you have evidence of it, that you have personal knowledge of this God (that is apparently obtained by magical means), and so on and so forth. Moreover, you repeatedly try to tell everybody what atheists believe, and what is true for atheists, despite your protestations that you have to be a theist to know what is true for theists.

    Also, we settled the matter of how God exists for you years ago. There's no dispute about that. Given that God exists for you, it makes no sense for you to say that God doesn't exist for me, unless you're only interested in the existence of God as a matter of subjective belief, rather than as a matter of objective fact. If God exists for you, objectively, then God must necessarily also exist for me, objectively.

    If your assertion is that God only exists as a subjective belief you have, then we're done and we really can go about our respective business.

    The problem is that, even after years, I don't think you're really capable of separating the notion of God's objective existence from God's subjective existence in your mind. That lack of capacity shows up again and again in your sloppy use of language and muddying of terms. (Alternatively, it could be a case of deliberately muddying the waters - i.e. trolling - but giving you the benefit of the doubt, I think it's more likely incapacity.)

    My "position" is only that you have insufficient evidence to establish the existence of your God, and that therefore your claims to certainty are hollow. My position is right, regardless of what I might "need" to comfort myself or whatever.
  23. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    Nonsense. You've spent thread after thread reciting your "God Is" mantra, and now you're telling me you're not saying God exists? "Oh, but God doesn't exist like things exist. God has a special kind of non-existent existence!", you say. Yeah.

    You protest too much. If it wasn't important to you to trumpet how "God Is" to the atheist world, you wouldn't be here every day doing it.

    You missed the point (again!). The fact that your claim happens to be about God's existence is irrelevant to the point I made there. My point was about the onus of proof that is on anybody making claims about anything.

    Religion is to theism as "atheist culture" is to atheism. Does that make sense to you?

    In every thread in which you have ever discussed anything to do with God.

    I have justified my position. You haven't justified yours. Saying "it's obvious" is not a justification. If it really was obvious, there'd be nothing to debate.

    The position of theism is that God exists. How is that not about God?

    This is a psychological need of mine, I assume. A character flaw that you've identified in me.

    Why are my psychological needs - or yours - relevant to the question of whether God exists? Does needing to believe make God pop into existence, and needing him not to make him vanish? Is that what you're saying?

    Are you capable of discussing the question of the objective existence of God? Or are you only capable of discussing what you believe about God's existence and why you "need" to believe that?

    Again with the psychoanalysis. Now I have to be right because I'm on a power trip. I get it.

    Still, whether I like a power trip or not, the question of whether God exists is still sitting there waiting to be debated.

    Other than all the carefully-argued, logical, rational posts I've made, attempting to discuss the question with you in good faith, you mean?

    As it happens, that's not at all what I think, automatically or otherwise. Where on earth did you get that idea from?

    You think that atheists are angry because ... what? Because they can't disprove God? Because they secretly know God Is, deep in their hearts, but choose to deny Him, which creates internal conflict that manifests as anger and frustration? Something like that?

    Would you say atheists are angry at themselves most of all, because they "really" know they're telling lies to themselves, when they could be partying on in eternal bliss and harmony with the righteous theists? Something like that?

    It couldn't possibly be that atheists are not angry at religion, or at God, but get frustrated when it turns out that, in discussions, theists can't conduct themselves according to the moral precepts that they themselves say they hold to. It couldn't be anything like that, could it? It couldn't possibly be frustration at the lack of good faith displayed by the holier-than-thou fundamentalist theists on science forums, could it?

    Yes, Jan, it must be that atheists just fall into a hopeless rage at the idea that they might be wrong, and they just lash at at the poor theists who innocently point out the Truth. I guess the theists can just ignore the atheist arguments, since they must be irrational because they are driven by anger. Do you agree?

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