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Atheism is wrong, Theism is also wrong
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Posted 9/29/14 , edited 9/29/14
1. You cannot prove God doesn't exist definitively. Atheists believe God definitely doesn't exist. You're believing on faith, because you can't prove it.

2. You cannot prove God exists definitively. Theists believe God definitely exists. You're believing on faith, because you can't prove it.

3. You cannot prove anything anything definitely. Having absolute belief in anything is believing on faith, because you can't prove it.

Faith is the coalescing of probabilities, it is necessary for our decision making process, which is necessary for our survival; Assuming our survival is something that is desired. However just faith alone is insufficient, we need scrutiny to keep faith in check so that we don't just make decisions, but we make the right decisions. Those who are willing to continually scrutinize their faith are the ones who will continue to improve.

You have two options.
Either you remain in the comfort of your faith and stagnate till you die, or you scrutinize your faith and discover something new all the time; and trust me, I promise you will never run out of new things to discover, probably.


"...a human impulse which, despite its restriction to a relatively small number of men, has all through history proved itself as real and as vital as hunger—as potent as thirst or greed. I need not say that I refer to that simplest yet most exalted attribute of our species—the acute, persistent, unquenchable craving TO KNOW." - Howard P. Lovecraft
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Posted 9/29/14
I'm thinking your criticism is less of atheism and theism, and more an argument that gnosticism is inferior to agnosticism. That is to say, your title should probably have been "Gnostic Theism and Gnostic Atheism are Equally Invalid" or some other such instead of "Atheism is wrong, and Theism is Also Wrong". See what I mean?
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Posted 9/29/14 , edited 9/29/14

BlueOni wrote:

I'm thinking your criticism is less of atheism and theism, and more an argument that gnosticism is inferior to agnosticism. That is to say, your title should probably have been "Gnostic Theism and Gnostic Atheism are Equally Invalid" or some other such instead of "Atheism is wrong, and Theism is Also Wrong". See what I mean?


Actually it's more or less about applying epistemology to theism and atheism. I didn't say agnosticism because that word tends to be a stigma, people hear it and dismiss it without actually thinking clearly about it. If instead I can show someone the "why" of agnosticism instead of just opening with the name, results tend to be more favorable.

Also shh...title is a marketing ploy.


PS: Say hi to Cthulhu for me when he wakes up eh?

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excalion wrote:

Actually it's more or less about applying epistemology to theism and atheism. I didn't say agnosticism because that word tends to be a stigma, people hear it and dismiss it without actually thinking clearly about it. If instead I can show someone the "why" of agnosticism instead of just opening with the name, results tend to be more favorable.

Also shh...title is a marketing ploy.


Clever.


PS: Say hi to Cthulhu for me when he wakes up eh?


Maybe after he gets his coffee. He tends to eat anyone who tries to talk to him before he gets his coffee.
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Posted 9/29/14
Your arguments are just going against people's beliefs. I don't know what people say someone like me would be called since I don't have a particular belief. Don't you think this is a little hurtful to just wrong a belief without researching it first or being part of it for a short time. You can't wrong a person's belief 'cause it will cause an uproar, it's like if someone wronged your belief, you wouldn't like it. DON'T WRONG BELIEFS OR OPINIONS THAT COULD CAUSE PROBLEMS!
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Posted 9/29/14

AnimeFreak1540 wrote:

Your arguments are just going against people's beliefs. I don't know what people say someone like me would be called since I don't have a particular belief. Don't you think this is a little hurtful to just wrong a belief without researching it first or being part of it for a short time. You can't wrong a person's belief 'cause it will cause an uproar, it's like if someone wronged your belief, you wouldn't like it. DON'T WRONG BELIEFS OR OPINIONS THAT COULD CAUSE PROBLEMS!


lol what are you talking about? I "wronged" my own belief in my original post already. I promised something and then said probably.

I even said everything is based somewhat in faith, because we can't prove anything. So I could be totally wrong, I admit that. However probabilistically speaking, I'm probably not wrong. Then again, you never know.

^ see, what's how you handle criticism. Not to defend a ridiculous idea to your death, but to accept other people's criticism and admit your own fallibility. Even if you believe you're right, you can't simply ignore the possibility that you might be wrong.

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Posted 9/29/14

excalion wrote:


lol what are you talking about? I "wronged" my own belief in my original post already. I promised something and then said probably.

I even said everything is based somewhat in faith, because we can't prove anything. So I could be totally wrong, I admit that. However probabilistically speaking, I'm probably not wrong. Then again, you never know.

^ see, what's how you handle criticism. Not to defend a ridiculous idea to your death, but to accept other people's criticism and admit your own fallibility. Even if you believe you're right, you can't simply ignore the possibility that you might be wrong.



You ever stated it was your belief to begin with. Either way, posts like this can cause an uproar. I'd rather not see a problem form. Also, if you have wronged your own belief, would that make you have somewhat different beliefs than others?
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Posted 9/29/14

AnimeFreak1540 wrote:


excalion wrote:


lol what are you talking about? I "wronged" my own belief in my original post already. I promised something and then said probably.

I even said everything is based somewhat in faith, because we can't prove anything. So I could be totally wrong, I admit that. However probabilistically speaking, I'm probably not wrong. Then again, you never know.

^ see, what's how you handle criticism. Not to defend a ridiculous idea to your death, but to accept other people's criticism and admit your own fallibility. Even if you believe you're right, you can't simply ignore the possibility that you might be wrong.



You ever stated it was your belief to begin with. Either way, posts like this can cause an uproar. I'd rather not see a problem form. Also, if you have wronged your own belief, would that make you have somewhat different beliefs than others?




“Iron rusts from disuse, stagnant water loses its purity, and in cold weather becomes frozen; even so does inaction sap the vigors of the mind.”

Don't be afraid of conflict, from conflict is born the grandest of ideas and the most interesting and bewildering of conclusions. I promise to be civil in conversation but that's all. If someone can't handle opposing viewpoints, they are in the wrong damn forum.
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Posted 9/29/14 , edited 9/29/14
I agree that we don't have perfect proof of anything outside the realm of mathematics. But you have to ask after an opening post, what level of justification is the right level of justification for holding a belief then?

I also kind of want to rework the way we use words. Here it's like faith is being used as ascribing to a statement we don't have absolute proof for. I disagree with that definition. To me, belief is having confidence a particular statement is true. That confidence may or may not come from justification. Faith is having confidence a particular statement is true, in spite of being presented with evidence to the contrary. Real faith is probably something that's terribly hard to achieve under that definition. Mostly because if we used it carelessly, we could probably be hurt by countless people in our lifetime. That's probably why so few people can have it.

In fact, thinking on it, this definition is probably borrowed from Kierkegaard. It's useful though I think, since we have different words, belief and faith should be different concepts even though most people equate them. Using Kierkegaard's definition might also suggest the reason we tend to search out justification for our beliefs too, given that pure faith might be quite damaging in some situations.
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Posted 9/29/14

excalion wrote:

1. You cannot prove God doesn't exist definitively. Atheists believe God definitely doesn't exist. You're believing on faith, because you can't prove it.


Nor could you prove "kastaramakas" doesn't exist definitively. That's because "kastaramakas" isn't defined.

"Prove unicorns don't exist", well I at least know what a unicorn is, so if I find a unicorn I prove the statement "unicorns don't exist" wrong. So even if practically I cannot prove unicorns don't exist, and am thus 'unicorn agnostic', I at least understand the concept well enough to understand what 'proof' entails.

"Prove god exists" to me is just as vague as "prove god doesn't exist". It's not that I cannot practically do it, it's that I don't even understand how CONCEPTUALLY it works. "God" appears a collection of syllables here.


2. You cannot prove God exists definitively. Theists believe God definitely exists. You're believing on faith, because you can't prove it.


So what makes 'god' refer to anything in the first place? What do theists even have 'belief' or 'faith' in?


3. You cannot prove anything anything definitely. Having absolute belief in anything is believing on faith, because you can't prove it.


Why should we care? The things we can prove to certain degrees, like "unicorns don't exist" are well defined. "God" doesn't appear to qualify even under that basic standard.


The problems with god are more fundamental than 'proof'. How can we begin to talk about 'proof' if the concept we are asked to 'prove' is left vague and ill-defined?
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Posted 9/29/14

crazykl45 wrote:

I agree that we don't have perfect proof of anything outside the realm of mathematics. But you have to ask after an opening post, what level of justification is the right level of justification for holding a belief then?

I also kind of want to rework the way we use words. Here it's like faith is being used as ascribing to a statement we don't have absolute proof for. I disagree with that definition. To me, belief is having confidence a particular statement is true. That confidence may or may not come from justification. Faith is having confidence a particular statement is true, in spite of being presented with evidence to the contrary. Real faith is probably something that's terribly hard to achieve under that definition. Mostly because if we used it carelessly, we could probably be hurt by countless people in our lifetime. That's probably why so few people can have it.

In fact, thinking on it, this definition is probably borrowed from Kierkegaard. It's useful though I think, since we have different words, belief and faith should be different concepts. Most people equate them. Using Kierkegaard's definition might also suggest the reason we tend to search out justification for our beliefs too, given that pure faith might be quite damaging in some situations.


I disagree and offer up this quote instead.

"Men of broader intellect know that there is no sharp distinction betwixt the real and the unreal; that all things appear as they do only by virtue of the delicate individual physical and mental media through which we are made conscious of them; but the prosaic materialism of the majority condemns as madness the flashes of super-sight which penetrate the common veil of obvious empiricism."

My answer to your question regarding justification is that there is no achievable level of justification available to us for absolute belief. All knowledge is a distillation of probabilities, but at the heart of it all, the probabilistic nature has not changed.

There is a distinction between atheism, theism and agnosticism. Whereas atheism and theism contains mostly absolute beliefs, agnosticism contains mostly the beliefs as described my you. While I agree that beliefs may exist without either absolute justification or faith, I must insist that absolute belief must require either absolute justification or faith.

That's what theism and atheism is, absolute belief. So in the absence of absolute justification, I must insist that they manifest themselves by faith.

But at the end of the day, let me ask you this. What do you have if you can no longer have faith in your five senses? What justification do you have to believe the validity of you five senses?

See? Everyone needs some faith, sometimes they just don't realize it.
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Posted 9/29/14 , edited 9/29/14
@SilvaZoldyck: Yeah, good point. The definition of god that we have is flimsy too. If a definition is flimsy, it gets even harder to talk about it in any kind of meaningful way.
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Posted 9/29/14 , edited 9/29/14

SilvaZoldyck wrote:


excalion wrote:

1. You cannot prove God doesn't exist definitively. Atheists believe God definitely doesn't exist. You're believing on faith, because you can't prove it.


Nor could you prove "kastaramakas" doesn't exist definitively. That's because "kastaramakas" isn't defined.

"Prove unicorns don't exist", well I at least know what a unicorn is, so if I find a unicorn I prove the statement "unicorns don't exist" wrong. So even if practically I cannot prove unicorns don't exist, and am thus 'unicorn agnostic', I at least understand the concept well enough to understand what 'proof' entails.

"Prove god exists" to me is just as vague as "prove god doesn't exist". It's not that I cannot practically do it, it's that I don't even understand how CONCEPTUALLY it works. "God" appears a collection of syllables here.


2. You cannot prove God exists definitively. Theists believe God definitely exists. You're believing on faith, because you can't prove it.


So what makes 'god' refer to anything in the first place? What do theists even have 'belief' or 'faith' in?


3. You cannot prove anything anything definitely. Having absolute belief in anything is believing on faith, because you can't prove it.


Why should we care? The things we can prove to certain degrees, like "unicorns don't exist" are well defined. "God" doesn't appear to qualify even under that basic standard.


The problems with god are more fundamental than 'proof'. How can we begin to talk about 'proof' if the concept we are asked to 'prove' is left vague and ill-defined?


If you can't even understand the concept, what right do you have to say whether it exists or not?

The difference between people who instinctively react to the unknown by denying its existance and those who withhold judgement is a matter of perspective on the ratio of the known vs. The unknown. Let me assure you, that ratio is severely lopsided, and not in favor of the side where we can deny the existance of all things unknown to us.
Posted 9/29/14
well, being a slave to time is no joke.
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Posted 9/29/14 , edited 9/29/14

excalion wrote:

I disagree and offer up this quote instead.

"Men of broader intellect know that there is no sharp distinction betwixt the real and the unreal; that all things appear as they do only by virtue of the delicate individual physical and mental media through which we are made conscious of them; but the prosaic materialism of the majority condemns as madness the flashes of super-sight which penetrate the common veil of obvious empiricism."

My answer to your question regarding justification is that there is no achievable level of justification available to us for absolute belief. All knowledge is a distillation of probabilities, but at the heart of it all, the probabilistic nature has not changed.

There is a distinction between atheism, theism and agnosticism. Whereas atheism and theism contains mostly absolute beliefs, agnosticism contains mostly the beliefs as described my you. While I agree that beliefs may exist without either absolute justification or faith, I must insist that absolute belief must require either absolute justification or faith.

That's what theism and atheism is, absolute belief. So in the absence of absolute justification, I must insist that they manifest themselves by faith.

But at the end of the day, let me ask you this. What do you have if you can no longer have faith in your five senses? What justification do you have to believe the validity of you five senses?

See? Everyone needs some faith, sometimes they just don't realize it.

Yeah, you could pretty much substitute belief in for faith where you use it and get what I believe (if that makes sense). So that's juat a minor point.

I absolutely agree there's no way we can have absolute proof of anything, and that everyone ascribes to something that's unjustified. I think the morals and values we typically hold are some of the best examples. What's good, what's bad, why's it wrong to hurt others, etc. There's not a lot we can provide here. The "good" is something that might be just as intangible as a god and almost as hard to pin down with a definition. Yet people make moral claims freely and treat them as though they're objective in some way. Why? And perhaps more importantly, does it matter if we can't precisely pin down what the "good" is before we consider how we should conduct ourselves in society? I tend to think that before defining the good fully, we should worry about creating a society that doesn't collapse in on itself.

Maybe, just maybe belief in god should be the same.
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