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Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,09:23   

I'd like to test the waters with this one.

Obviously we can discuss the historical accuracy, testability, repeatability, etc. But recently, I've been thinking that the purported miracles don't do faiths any favours. Here's why:

They show that the core message is not strong enough to carry the faith, It is not completely persuasive through argument and logic alone. So the guy had to do some magic also. A divinely constructed message would not need this.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,09:40   

Ahhh but in order to have miracles you must presuppose laws.  If we do not presuppose such things (show me a law.  what color is it?) then we have no need to worry about the implications of miracles because by definition they do not exist.

His eye is on the sparrow, the heavens and earth are sustained by his mighty back, he made the turtles, etc etc.  Any appeal to anti-realism will defeat your criticism, I believe.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
guthrie



Posts: 696
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,10:01   

Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 26 2008,09:23)
It is not completely persuasive through argument and logic alone.

As far as I am aware, logic and evidence and stuff were not so important in the past.  Therefore, your critique of miracles would have carried no weight, given the different world views, philosophy etc held in the past.  

Nowadays, though, your critique is more to the point.

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,10:05   

Perhaps we can also discuss the fact that the Virgin Mary only appears (e.g., on food, rock faces, etc.) in Catholic countries. Isn't that sort of preaching to the converted? Why shouldn't the Virgin Mary appear in, oh, I dunno, Japan, Mongolia, Algeria, Mississippi, Iceland, or Lesotho?

For that matter, why are all the cases of American teenagers worshipping the devil found in Bible Belt places like Kansas or Texas?

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,10:29   

[Believer]

Ah but Richard god is mysterious and mickle and ineffable are his ways. Who are you to place restrictions upon god?  Etc.

[/Believer]

Anyway, haven't we long known that dogmatic ideologies both religious, quasi-religious and non-religious DON'T convert people by appeals to reason alone? They offer "comforting" "explanations" (scare quotes VERY much meant) for a variety of phenomena, and use appeals to common prejudices, exploitation of common weak links in human psychology and if all else fails downright threats and fear to sustain/spread themselves. Religion, certain forms of political ideology, advertising about health and cosmetic etc etc etc all use the same techniques.

The appeal of appeals to miracles (from younger looking skin to eternal salvation) is one of those things our general lack of statistical perspective lands us with. Granted it's the 21st century and yadda yadda yadda, but why on earth some of us expect that humanity is more than 7 hairs short of being a baboon is beyond me. Appeals to miracles, small surveys being erroenously extrapolated, a large world impinging on small social consciousness, purpose seeking mental "software" etc are all legacies of our evolution that are not going to disappear overnight (or maybe at all). The appeal to miracles is a very effective strategy of exploiting this chink in our mental armour.

More than these miracle appeals degrading the coherent logical whole of any particular (religious) proposition, our desire for them is evidence of our physical, psychological and social evolution. Their effectiveness is part of the evidence AGAINST certain (religious) ideas, not for them. Any appeal to unreasoned prejudice or mystery has the same effect. Appeals to any form of unreason or antireason simply destroy not only the reason based nature of a proposition that contains them, but their use is actually a point in favour of the best reasoned propositions we have currently developed.

Ironic I reckon!

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Kristine



Posts: 3061
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,11:10   

What does a “miracle” say about the relationship between the believer and the deity? Doesn’t this require helplessness on the part of the believer, and thus exploitation, abuse by the Powerful One? (And does it really matter if it’s “benevolent” when it could choose at any time not to be?)

Isn’t the believer then reduced to a passive entity, watching the Prime Mover (not unlike watching Prime Time celebrities on television, who are of course more important people than you are, there wasting your precious life watching them on television) make things happen?  What about our action? All religion wants us to do is answer yea or nay. Screw “creation,” what about our creativity?

This is a question I’ve asked over and over of fundies and they never give a straight answer. Because they are neither creative nor particularly imaginative. Yet they want me to be like them. There are plenty of them already being like them, IMO.

--------------
Which came first: the shimmy, or the hip?

AtBC Poet Laureate

"I happen to think that this prerequisite criterion of empirical evidence is itself not empirical." - Clive

"Damn you. This means a trip to the library. Again." -- fnxtr

  
J-Dog



Posts: 4402
Joined: Dec. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,11:20   

Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 26 2008,09:23)
I'd like to test the waters with this one.

Obviously we can discuss the historical accuracy, testability, repeatability, etc. But recently, I've been thinking that the purported miracles don't do faiths any favours. Here's why:

They show that the core message is not strong enough to carry the faith, It is not completely persuasive through argument and logic alone. So the guy had to do some magic also. A divinely constructed message would not need this.

I think you have touched on a good point here... regarding why religions have staying power - if your deity does miracles, it virtually ensures the continuation of the shaman, priest, parson rabbi position.  

The rubes have someone to turn to when the Sky Faja* is angry, and the ruling elite have a tool that can help control the masses, and the priest class has an incentive to live - explain / interpret the "miracle", and keep the Cycle Of Stupidity spinning.

So, actually, miracles improve the brand.  Reinforcement.

And please keep in mind, that I have New, New All Improved Indulgences available - for a limited time only - to posters of this site!

Be the first poster to make it all the way through the Heavenly Gates™!  Find out what the "Virgin Mary" is
really like!  But wait there's more!  Every poster that send me their cash or American Express Check for $99.99 now, will also receive, at no extra charge, a Genuine Piece of The True Cross!

Act Now!  Reserve YOUR place in heaven...FOR ALL ETERNITY!~

valid only in places that have American Cash


*from the Dirty Dutch - I just watched a re-run of Austin Powers Goldmember on cable this weekend.  Very sophomoric humor - it's perfect for me.  Foxy was foxy too.

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Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,16:49   

Do you think God looks back on his handy work and exclaims "Holy Moley!  I just did a miracle."  I'm pretty sure that miracle is our term, not his.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,16:52   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,16:49)
Do you think God looks back on his handy work and exclaims "Holy Moley!  I just did a miracle."  I'm pretty sure that miracle is our term, not his.

Do you think that god is an old man in the sky with a beard who has a childish need to be worshipped and would kill his son for forgiveness by proxy rather than just forgive, and who thinks that I'm accountable for what my great..great...great... ancestor did?

Oh, you do.

You're missing the point. The message isn't enough. Not nearly enough.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Mr_Christopher



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Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,17:06   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,16:49)
Do you think God looks back on his handy work and exclaims "Holy Moley!  I just did a miracle."  I'm pretty sure that miracle is our term, not his.

I want to know if he ever looks at his handy work and admits he fucked up.

"Boy was THAT a mistake!"

"Damn I take a little nap, wake up and all my chosen people are getting waxed by this adolph guy!  Not good!  Oops! Note to self, keep an eye on my favorites!"

Surely god is bright enough to know when he makes really stupid and obvious mistakes, yes?

"Oops, ANOTHER species gone extinct?  Damn I'm like up to a 90% failure rate?!  Maybe I should replace my magic powers for some new ones.  I seem to kill everything I try to grow! Maybe I should use Miracle Grow next time"

Yes, surely god is a rational and self-correcting dude.

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,17:53   

See? This is why we can't have nice things!

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
hereoisreal



Posts: 745
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,20:34   

Like chance, an unusual event, some might call a miracle, doesn't have to break any law  of physics.
Beating the odds can always be attributed to either skill or luck.  Like Tiger Woods says, " The more I practice, the luckier I get."
And the realist says, "It's not hard to walk on water if you know where the stumps are."

Of the 342 "miracle" stories on my web site, only one, would I contend, breaks
any  law.

Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,20:55   

zero is there such a thing as a 'law' of nature?

if so then how are such laws broken?

if not, then how do you know the lights will come on when you flip the switch?

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Kristine



Posts: 3061
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,21:42   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,15:49)
Do you think God looks back on his handy work and exclaims "Holy Moley!  I just did a miracle."  I'm pretty sure that miracle is our term, not his.

Seriously, I could accept a God who was brave enough to say, "Um, I'm out of ideas. Any suggestions?"

*Raises hand*

The surrealists were big into collaboration.

--------------
Which came first: the shimmy, or the hip?

AtBC Poet Laureate

"I happen to think that this prerequisite criterion of empirical evidence is itself not empirical." - Clive

"Damn you. This means a trip to the library. Again." -- fnxtr

  
hereoisreal



Posts: 745
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,21:45   

Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Feb. 26 2008,20:55)
zero is there such a thing as a 'law' of nature?

if so then how are such laws broken?

if not, then how do you know the lights will come on when you flip the switch?

Eras, I know nothing about natural law or "laws
of nature", and very little about the laws of physics.


I wrote:

************************

The order of creation is as follows:

Verse 3 light
Verse 8 heaven (home)
Verse 10 earth (footstool)

****************************

When I posted the above on "Google talk origins", someone posted,"You err." and he quoted where
God said,"I create darkness and I create light."

While taking a break, I jotted down my reply on a scratch pad:

"It's simple. He turns off the light."

I walked into my computer room to post, turned
on the switch and the light bulb blew.

*********************
Miracle, chance, or act of nature?

1Ki 20:30 But the rest fled to Aphek, into the city; and [there] a wall fell upon twenty and seven thousand of the men [that were] left.

Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,22:23   

If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God as these posts exhibit then I would have trouble accepting the concept too.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,22:37   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,22:23)
If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God as these posts exhibit then I would have trouble accepting the concept too.

You are, unless you can prove otherwise. Having an old book wont help.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,23:13   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,22:23)
If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God as these posts exhibit then I would have trouble accepting the concept too.

I would ask how you know that your conception of God is right while others' are wrong, but somehow I strongly suspect the conversation would spend weeks going nowhere.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
skeptic



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Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,23:35   

it's not my conception, it's just what has been written.  Whether it's true or not is irrelevant especially if it isn't understood at this point.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,23:38   

Quote
If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God as these posts exhibit then I would have trouble accepting the concept too.


Followed by

Quote
it's not my conception, it's just what has been written.  Whether it's true or not is irrelevant especially if it isn't understood at this point.


So we need to know the nature of God, but not if its true or not (not relevant), just a written perception.

Can you stink up some other thread or get on topic? Cheers.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,23:42   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,23:35)
it's not my conception, it's just what has been written.  Whether it's true or not is irrelevant especially if it isn't understood at this point.

'What has been written'??

Are you trying to claim that there's one conception of God, and it's the one that's been written down?

I hope you're not really saying that.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
skeptic



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Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,23:58   

just to point a few...

no where is God portrayed as an old grey-haired grandfather,

at many points in the Bible God has no problem wiping out his chosen people

how in the world would we know if God was outta ideas or even what his ideas were?

just some points to consider

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 26 2008,23:59   

just referring to the conception that you guys are bashing

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,00:04   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,23:59)
just referring to the conception that you guys are bashing

Oh, so by "it's not my conception, it's just what has been written", you mean the conception that's been written here?

Ah.

I don't think there is *a* conception of God that's been written here.

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,00:06   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,23:58)
just to point a few...

no where is God portrayed as an old grey-haired grandfather,

ERRRRRRRRNNNNNNNNNTTTTTT.



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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,00:10   

What a nugget. Zeus looked similar also.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,00:11   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,22:23)
If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God as these posts exhibit then I would have trouble accepting the concept too.

Well, it didn't take us long to complete that circle.

 
Quote
If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God


What nature? Again, why is your conception of 'the nature of God' valid while the conceptions of others are wrong?

Don't you have to, you know, know that your conception is right to say that others are 'ignorant'?

How is this different from you accusing us of being ignorant of unicorns or Santa Claus?

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,00:44   

I forgot that book that Da Vinci wrote, how stupid of me!

Maybe he just did the comic book version.

Look, if you guys are going to bash, at least have a clue as to what it is that you're actually bashing, just a suggestion.  It looks awful hypocritical to get on me for referring to a particular incarnation of God and then continue to bash that very same incarnation.  My suggestion is if you're going to bash a Judeo-Christian incarnation learn something about it first so you can at least present valid points rather than this third-grade nonsense you guys keep throwing around.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,00:51   

"no where is God portrayed as an old grey-haired grandfather"

*Scans for text reference*. Nope.

Thread's about miracles needed to augment a bad logical argument, not how you're the bestest christian who's god is the most bible like.

I said:

Quote
Do you think that god is an old man in the sky with a beard who has a childish need to be worshipped and would kill his son for forgiveness by proxy rather than just forgive, and who thinks that I'm accountable for what my great..great...great... ancestor did?

Oh, you do.


and your bone of contention?  

HIM HAVING GREY HAIR

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,01:06   

My contention is, based upon these posts, you guys aren't capable of discussing theism or miracles in any objective manner.  My suggestion is you go back and learn something about those topics before you begin to spout off.

Seems pretty straight forward to me.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,01:11   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,01:06)
My contention is, based upon these posts, you guys aren't capable of discussing theism or miracles in any objective manner.  My suggestion is you go back and learn something about those topics before you begin to spout off.

Seems pretty straight forward to me.

and my contention, based on your posting history, is you can't find your arse with both hands.

Sacred text, not so good... BUT YOU CAN HAS MAGICS!!111

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,01:33   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,00:44)
I forgot that book that Da Vinci wrote, how stupid of me!

Maybe he just did the comic book version.

Look, if you guys are going to bash, at least have a clue as to what it is that you're actually bashing, just a suggestion.  It looks awful hypocritical to get on me for referring to a particular incarnation of God and then continue to bash that very same incarnation.  My suggestion is if you're going to bash a Judeo-Christian incarnation learn something about it first so you can at least present valid points rather than this third-grade nonsense you guys keep throwing around.

Should I ask my question a third time?

Why is your interpretation of 'Judeo-Christian incarnation' right and those of others wrong?

Quote
My contention is, based upon these posts, you guys aren't capable of discussing theism or miracles in any objective manner.  My suggestion is you go back and learn something about those topics before you begin to spout off.


You're right. If only we knew exactly what you know about unicorns, we'd see that in fact they make very good sense.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Kristine



Posts: 3061
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,01:36   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 26 2008,23:44)
I forgot that book that Da Vinci wrote, how stupid of me!

Maybe he just did the comic book version.

Look, if you guys are going to bash, at least have a clue as to what it is that you're actually bashing, just a suggestion.  It looks awful hypocritical to get on me for referring to a particular incarnation of God and then continue to bash that very same incarnation.  My suggestion is if you're going to bash a Judeo-Christian incarnation learn something about it first so you can at least present valid points rather than this third-grade nonsense you guys keep throwing around.

This reminds me of a caller-in to the radio show who asked, "Just exactly what is it that you atheists don't believe in?" Uh...

Uhhhhh...

What ya got? ;)

I said he could say so if he's out of ideas, Skeptic. Until then, yep, you're right, we'd have no idea. Probably for a really good reason.

--------------
Which came first: the shimmy, or the hip?

AtBC Poet Laureate

"I happen to think that this prerequisite criterion of empirical evidence is itself not empirical." - Clive

"Damn you. This means a trip to the library. Again." -- fnxtr

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,01:37   

Quote
My suggestion is if you're going to bash a Judeo-Christian incarnation learn something about it first so you can at least present valid points rather than this third-grade nonsense you guys keep throwing around.


You're right. Mea maxima culpa. Please explain to us then, since you're the only one here who can, why Jesus only appears on tortillas in Catholic countries. I'm sure there's a very sound theological reason that I'm just ignorant of, given my third grade edumacation.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,03:01   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,07:06)
My contention is, based upon these posts, you guys aren't capable of discussing theism or miracles in any objective manner.  My suggestion is you go back and learn something about those topics before you begin to spout off.

Seems pretty straight forward to me.

You're saying this to a group of people a) far more knowledgable, b) far more educated and c) far more intelligent on and about any topic, including theism, than you are. Something demonstrated time and time again. No one needs a caricature of one specific god concept to be ludicrous to lack a belief in it. Is it still possible you have no idea what atheism is or indeed what belief itself is? {Slaps forehead} Look who I'm asking. Of course you remain clueless.

Well done Skeptic.

Louis

P.S. If you're going to whine, spew crap, miss the point and generally derail someone else's thread then let me take this opportunity to remind you you have an exisiting thread, dedicated to you defending and defining your beliefs, on which you have a myriad of unanswered questions waiting.

--------------
Bye.

  
bystander



Posts: 301
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,06:36   

I think that you miss the point. The idea that my religion is true and all other religions are false is a relatively recent thing. Before this I think that most people believed that their god and everybody else's god were real, so having a god that could do cooler miracles than somebody else's god was an advantage.

  
hereoisreal



Posts: 745
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,06:37   

Quote (hereoisreal @ Feb. 26 2008,21:45)
Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Feb. 26 2008,20:55)
zero is there such a thing as a 'law' of nature?

if so then how are such laws broken?

if not, then how do you know the lights will come on when you flip the switch?

Eras, I know nothing about natural law or "laws
of nature", and very little about the laws of physics.


I wrote:

************************

The order of creation is as follows:

Verse 3 light
Verse 8 heaven (home)
Verse 10 earth (footstool)

****************************

When I posted the above on "Google talk origins", someone posted,"You err." and he quoted where
God said,"I create darkness and I create light."

While taking a break, I jotted down my reply on a scratch pad:

"It's simple. He turns off the light."

I walked into my computer room to post, turned
on the switch and the light bulb blew.

*********************
Miracle, chance, or act of nature?

1Ki 20:30 But the rest fled to Aphek, into the city; and [there] a wall fell upon twenty and seven thousand of the men [that were] left.

Zero

Happy Birthday Erasmus.
Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,08:39   

Quote (bystander @ Feb. 27 2008,12:36)
I think that you miss the point. The idea that my religion is true and all other religions are false is a relatively recent thing. Before this I think that most people believed that their god and everybody else's god were real, so having a god that could do cooler miracles than somebody else's god was an advantage.

While I'm not sure how accurate this is, it's certainly a good point.

The major quibble I'd have is "define relatively recently". Monotheistic religions have been around for millenia, and certainly they coexisted (in some cases definitively started from) polytheistic religions, but the "one true god" claim is not a new one. Even amongst polytheistic religions that acknowledge the existence of many gods (like for example Hinduism) there are still sects who argue and fight about the correct manner to venerate each god, and even sometimes which gods to venerate at all.

Sure one of the ways this could be "decided" was the "cooler miracles" route, but this sort of thing was as transparent then as it is now. Many ancient writers from a variety of societies warn against overemphasis on miracles. Some ancient Greeks were particularly vocal on the subject IIRC!

However, that said, I think you bring up a very good idea, perhaps unintentionally, the issue that we are in general dealing with one, or at most three, monotheistic religions in Western civilisation. More than that those three religions are derived from the same roots. It's not a bad idea to remember that this is not all religion.

I think Rich is hitting the issue from a different angle however. I think that Rich is trying to get at (correct me if I'm wrong btw) the claim made by some theists of various religions that their faith is based on excellent evidence, reason, logic etc when it actually ain't. So if a theist makes the claim that their faith is supported by reason, and in the things they cite as corroboration are admittedly miraculous, then they are disproving their own claim.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:14   

Sorry, for the learning impaired, I will speak slowly and use small words.

The question is whether or not miracles can be used as proof of theism.  And as much as I hate to admit it, Louis is right, a miracle is proof of nothing as it is by definition a unique, most likely, unrepeatable event.  Or is it?

Here rises my problem and my lack of patience with nitwits.  Just what is a miracle?  Who gets to decide and how do you define a miracle.  This can't be done objectively by any definition.  The only review can be undertaken by looking at existing religions and their descriptions in order to evaluate the miracle in question.  Personally, I don't think this method is appropriate but I don't think miracle as proof of theism is a valid question.  That's up to you guys if you wanna play in this sandbox.

What is necessary, though, if you choose to go down this route is to be accurate or in some way factual if you're going to evaluate any idea.  By presenting the crap that guys have and then shooting it down as if it is reflective of religion is not only stupid but lazy.

My suggestion, again, is if you're going to try to evaluate J-C religion and miracles, learn something about the religion and what it is actually saying before sounding off.

What you guys are doing is the equivalent of saying "Mohammed could not have made the Midnight Ride because, in fact, he was actually a Chinese immigrant and everyone knows that Chinese immigrants don't ride horses."

And, Louis, as to the matter of contributions, well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  I've sat back for the last few months and witnessed a shocking display of idiocy.  So profound that I've found no reason whatsoever to touch my keyboard.  I view every post here as a bit of my precious time and a valuable contribution if I take the time to make it.  I can only hope that some day some of you will come to the realization that there are other opinions out there and maybe if you guys could think critically you'd see that.

Oh, and Louis, I can already anticipate the vulgarity that is to follow and you can save it.  It has no impact on me and the time you devote to typing it in is a waste of your precious time.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:20   

Quote
The question is whether or not miracles can be used as proof of theism.  And as much as I hate to admit it, Louis is right, a miracle is proof of nothing as it is by definition a unique, most likely, unrepeatable event.  Or is it?


This is a horrible mischaracterization of what I'm saying. I suggest real or not, miracles do faith no favours as you're trying to bolster a weak argument with parlor tricks, which shouldn't be necessary in a perfectly constructed (divine) message. Go to the back of the class...

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:23   

Well, I can see that no answer to my tortilla question is forthcoming...
:angry:

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:27   

Septic whines:
Quote
I view every post here as a bit of my precious time and a valuable contribution if I take the time to make it.  I can only hope that some day some of you will come to the realization that there are other opinions out there and maybe if you guys could think critically you'd see that.

Oh, and Louis, I can already anticipate the vulgarity that is to follow and you can save it.  It has no impact on me and the time you devote to typing it in is a waste of your precious time.


Wow. I nearly fainted.  to say the least, the louis-skeptic thread suggests that at least some of your posts are not worth much of your precious time nor that they are valuable contributions.  for reasons that you seem unable to understand. don't get me wrong, skeptic, you ain't a bad guy.  But obstinately thick about the head and ears.

But to channel Lenny (wow I guess I miss the crotchety old bastard):
Quote
you will come to the realization that there are other opinions out there


Why, dear skeptic, should anyone give a flying damn about your opinions?  If you cannot or will not inspect assertions critically, and instead privilege such nonsense with the status of 'an opinion', you are saying that we should all nod wisely and agree 'yes yes yes of course of course hmmm indeed' when it is plainly obvious that opinion or not, it is Bull Shit?

To say that any of us knows nothing about the general flavor of religion that you call J-C is supportable, to say that most of us or even a large fraction is simply not true.  Most of us are reformed religionists, sir douchebag, and the scales on your eyes have been removed from ours (and by that i don't mean atheism, but your particularly naughty little democratic fallacies, your is-ought confusion and your inability to understand propositional logic and the role of evidence in supporting a claim).  

that is liable to make folks sharp-tongued.  and you seem to enjoy that because persecution complexes seem to be one of your finer tastes.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:28   

Quote

My suggestion, again, is if you're going to try to evaluate J-C religion and miracles, learn something about the religion and what it is actually saying before sounding off.


Please share with us the hard facts about miracles that will no doubt make them make much more sense to all the rest of us.

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
EoRaptor013



Posts: 45
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:39   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,01:44)
I forgot that book that Da Vinci wrote, how stupid of me!

Maybe he just did the comic book version.

Look, if you guys are going to bash, at least have a clue as to what it is that you're actually bashing, just a suggestion.  It looks awful hypocritical to get on me for referring to a particular incarnation of God and then continue to bash that very same incarnation.  My suggestion is if you're going to bash a Judeo-Christian incarnation learn something about it first so you can at least present valid points rather than this third-grade nonsense you guys keep throwing around.

WTF!!!
That book DaVinci wrote? A comic book version?

I'm so thunderstruck I can't come up with the words to describe how incredibly (what's the HTML for strikethrough?) inane septic is. Confusing Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel fresco with a book by DaVinci just threw every circuit breaker I have. (Not to suggest, of course, that they weren't both equally great men.)

AND THEN, he accuses us of not knowing anything about that which we criticize! I sincerely doubt septic has ever read the Bible in its entirety. He certainly hasn't read any Bible commentary or scholarly research. And he knows jack excrement about religious art and literature.

Whew, somebody help me get all these circuits reset before there's a massive blackout all along the Eastern seaboard.  

0x1B

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:41   

In principle, I agree with you Richard.  Miracles are not a good proof of the existence of God.  But I would caution one thing.  I would tend to think that a miracle is not God's way of saying "Look how great I am, you should all bow down."  But rather our ignorance of what is actually occurring.  One example, about 2 weeks ago a four year old boy drowned in California.  He was pulled out of the pool and rushed to the hospital.  He was without pulse or breathing for 4 hours and then just woke up with no apparent brain damage or other lasting effects.  Some would call this a miracle and at a rational level we know that this boy should be dead.  But, as pointed out earlier, were any natural laws broken here?  There's no indication of that; we (by this I mean the medical community) just have no idea what happened.  In either case, this is very poor proof for the existence of God because even looking at a contemporary event we still have no idea what happened or what it does or doesn't mean.  How could even hope to look at events in antiquity and evaluate them any better?

No, Arden, you'll get no answer because the question is stupid.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:44   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,15:14)
[SNIP]

And, Louis, as to the matter of contributions, well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  I've sat back for the last few months and witnessed a shocking display of idiocy.  So profound that I've found no reason whatsoever to touch my keyboard.  I view every post here as a bit of my precious time and a valuable contribution if I take the time to make it.  I can only hope that some day some of you will come to the realization that there are other opinions out there and maybe if you guys could think critically you'd see that.

Oh, and Louis, I can already anticipate the vulgarity that is to follow and you can save it.  It has no impact on me and the time you devote to typing it in is a waste of your precious time.

Your concern trolling is noted.

We KNOW there are other opinions out there. I KNOW there are myriad other opinions out there, and guess what Skeptic, I also KNOW that a lot of the opinions I and other people have are wrong (or at the very least will be found to be at some point in the future). As usual Skeptic you are missing the point and paddling your troll canoe for all you are worth. YOU lecturing US on critical thought? YOU the most credulous unintellectual muppet I've encountered since FTK? Please, spare us these painstaking gifts of your time.

Try to follow this very carefully:

1) Everyone is born equal (or however you wish to phrase that idea).

2) Opinions are like arseholes, everyone has them.

3) My opinion that this table in front of me is a small Czechoslovakian policeman named Boris is not the same as your opinion that it is a table. The opinions can be distinguished between on the basis of evidence.

4) Not all opinions are equal.

5) People =/= opinions.

Geddit?

Sorry Skeptic, but from the precious gems of posts you delicately craft using your incredibly valuable time, you manifestly have no clue about any of these subjects. Stop wasting your time and ours. Like I said, what do you think you are contributing? If you want to present a different opinion then go ahead and do so, but expect to defend it. Thus far you are demonstrably incapable of defending your opinions. Your opinions on certain issues are not as valid as mine. Not because I say so, not because I like my opinions more than yours, not because of any bias, simply because mine are consistent with/based on the available evidence and yours are not. IS it possible that you STILL don't understand this.

So like I said, why re you wasting your precious time and ours with what is nothing more than concern trolling. This idiocy you speak of, care to demonstrate that it's idiocy, quote it, dissect it? No? Didn't think so.

Louis

P.S. Vulgarity? Pah! "Won't someone think of the children?". I'll stop being vulgar when you stop being stupid. Deal? That should keep me in dick jokes until the bury me!

--------------
Bye.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:48   

Raptor, thanks for the correction, I was writing on the fly.

But, before you get too cocky, I wouldn't suggest you get into a discussion of the Bible with me.  Unless you have a few years to spare to catch up.

Eramus, sorry, I could care less about your supposed persecution complexes.  The comments by the individuals on this board mean nothing to me personally.  And by all rights, the comments on this board should mean nothing to any mature adult but we can't take that for granted now can we?

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:50   

Louis, you're first premise is wrong.  No one is created equal.  As for the rest, well, crap piled on more crap.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:54   

zero thanks for the wishies.

Why do you suppose all these serendipitous things happen to you and not anyone else?  

I once dated a girl that lived in a world like that.  If a leaf happened to fall a certain way she would turn right, there was meaning farts, etc etc.  i later concluded she didn't really believe it.  just a cute way to act that hippies thought was really killer and mystical and cool.  i usually just spit tobacco juice and said, "Yup.  That's some crazy shit alright".

I've seen crazy shit.  Thought that metaphysical explanations might carry some variance.  Now I'm convinced that there is no rational scale of measuring such things, and I'm happy to surrender and say in paraphrase of some wiser person 'not only do we know shit is crazy, but shit is crazier than we can know'.  and for septic that means that his  personal opinions about crazy shit are validated and true, for him.  and for the rest of us, it means nothing of the sort.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:54   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,15:41)
No, Arden, you'll get no answer because the question is stupid.

No Skeptic, the question cuts to the very heart of the problems with your (or indeed anyone's) religious claims.

The reason you won't answer it is twofold: you cannot and you are too scared to even try.

What should worry you, but doesn't because you're basically lying to yourself, is we know you and your ideological kind from soup to nuts, from top to toe. Every weaselly little dodge to maintain your cognitive dissonance is known, every red herring, every whine, every little rhetorical trick. Everything. This has been documented, debated and discussed since time immemorial, and you aren't coming out with anything new.

If you had even the remotest shred of intellectual honesty or simple self respect you'd at least spend some of your precious time (my arse, how much precious time does a burger flipper at McDonalds have? Evidence of your ability to understand English let alone chemistry has not exactly been forthcoming, colour me sceptical) attempting to defend your wholly unsubstantiated claims.

Someone once advanced the hypothesis that religion is merely a form of psychotherapy. Designed to stave off mental illnesses like depression etc. Personally I find this claim ill-supported by the evidence, trite, and over simplified but I'll be damned if every time I deal with you you don't provide me with a body of anecdotal evidence that is remarkably personally convincing. If this claim about religion is true, and I have no reason to think it is btw, then boy, it hasn't worked for you.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:54   

Quote
No, Arden, you'll get no answer because the question is stupid.


Ah.

So you're telling us that miracles would MAKE MUCH MORE SENSE to all of us IF ONLY WE HAD ALL THE FACTS about them. When we invite you to tell us what these facts are, 'the question is stupid'.

Can you really not see why you're not winning any arguments here?

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:55   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,09:41)
In principle, I agree with you Richard.  Miracles are not a good proof of the existence of God.  But I would caution one thing.  I would tend to think that a miracle is not God's way of saying "Look how great I am, you should all bow down."  But rather our ignorance of what is actually occurring.  One example, about 2 weeks ago a four year old boy drowned in California.  He was pulled out of the pool and rushed to the hospital.  He was without pulse or breathing for 4 hours and then just woke up with no apparent brain damage or other lasting effects.  Some would call this a miracle and at a rational level we know that this boy should be dead.  But, as pointed out earlier, were any natural laws broken here?  There's no indication of that; we (by this I mean the medical community) just have no idea what happened.  In either case, this is very poor proof for the existence of God because even looking at a contemporary event we still have no idea what happened or what it does or doesn't mean.  How could even hope to look at events in antiquity and evaluate them any better?

No, Arden, you'll get no answer because the question is stupid.

That's nearly it. My point is they should be completely unnecessary. The message alone should do it. I'm not interested in a critique of unmeasured events from antiquity. The claim is they suggest faith needed spicing up some as the core message was (and still is) lacking.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:56   

hey skeptic out of all that, you choose to deny that you have a persecution complex?

you don't want to address the bit about why should your opinion be worth any more than any one elses?  nasty old empiricists.  always asking for evidence.  as if that mattered or something.

toodles

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:57   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,09:50)
Louis, you're first premise is wrong.  No one is created equal.

Well, *I* was, but none of the rest of you guys were... :angry:

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:57   

Quote (Arden Chatfield @ Feb. 27 2008,09:54)
Quote
No, Arden, you'll get no answer because the question is stupid.


Ah.

So you're telling us that miracles would MAKE MUCH MORE SENSE to all of us IF ONLY WE HAD ALL THE FACTS about them. When we invite you to tell us what these facts are, 'the question is stupid'.

Can you really not see why you're not winning any arguments here?

He'd be our Shammen, if we'd let him.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historicism#Karl_Popper

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:57   

Quote (Arden Chatfield @ Feb. 27 2008,09:57)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,09:50)
Louis, you're first premise is wrong.  No one is created equal.

Well, *I* was, but none of the rest of you guys were... :angry:

Shut up! I'm unique, just like everybody else!!!!1111one

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,09:59   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,15:50)
Louis, you're first premise is wrong.  No one is created equal.  As for the rest, well, crap piled on more crap.

People aren't born equal? You mean some are god's chosen and some aren't? You mean something else? So you simply mean that Linford Christie's innate running abilities are better than mine? Because I don't think anyone will disagree with that. Equal in terms of value and worth Skeptic, two arbitrary human concepts.

You'll need to elabroate on that. Explain yourself.

I was trying to put things simply for you. Oh well, it seems you cannot understand even that.

So are all opinions equal Skeptic? Do people = opinions? Are opinions indistinguisable on the basis of evidence? Explain which bits are crap and why please.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:01   

Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 27 2008,15:57)
Quote (Arden Chatfield @ Feb. 27 2008,09:57)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,09:50)
Louis, you're first premise is wrong.  No one is created equal.

Well, *I* was, but none of the rest of you guys were... :angry:

Shut up! I'm unique, just like everybody else!!!!1111one

[Life of Brain]

Brain: You are all individual!

Man in crowd: {raises hand} I'm not.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:05   

Dear All,

Please witness the human brain on religion in the form of Skeptic. First it's an essentialist, then a relativist, then a solipsist, then a nihilist, then a... you get the point.

Basically people like Skeptic are terrified that the little ideas they have in their head aren't real. They'll do and say anything to prevent themselves consciously acknowledging either the fact, or the fear of the fact, that those ideas are not real. Hence all the whining/concern trolling/red herrings/etc.

Skeptic's motto: Can't think, won't think.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:25   

Louis, I simply refuse to entertain that possibility.

Won't do it.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:40   

Richard, I would guess that there are some that can not be sustained by faith alone and need some sort of extraordinary basis supporting their belief.  Again, I would cite this as a human failing.  Call it weakness.  It goes to Arden's stupid question, maybe people need to see the Virgin Mary in their tortilla.  I for one do not believe that a fuzzy image of the Virgin Mary, Budda, Jesus or GWB in my tortilla means anything at all and to try to give any discussion about it credence is stupid.  Again, it says nothing about God but it sure says a lot about people, on both sides.

Louis, just as an exercise, why don't you go ahead and try to contemplate how men are equal.  Be careful, don't hurt yourself and if you come up with something let me know.

as for the rest...well it's a waste of my time.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:48   

skeptic, so you would see no significance (or at the least, the same amount of significance as the image of Baby Jesus in Swaddling Clothes manifested in an oil slick or pattern of flies on a deer carcass) in the resurrection of Jesus, turning water to wine, resurrection of Lazarus, virgin birth, loaves and fishes, etc etc etc?

You don't really believe these things happened?

Now that is interesting, and a break in the facade.  Please do expound, I will turn down the gain on the snark and I'm sure everyone else will too.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:56   

I see no comparison between the Resurrection and supposed images on tortillas.  It is also impossible to evaluate the other listed "miracles" objectively.  What is more important is to understand what they mean rather than trying to prove whether or not they really happened.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,10:57   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,16:40)
Louis, just as an exercise, why don't you go ahead and try to contemplate how men are equal.  Be careful, don't hurt yourself and if you come up with something let me know.

Already did. Now are you going to explain what you mean or are you just trolling for kicks again?

How about you try to elaborate in what sense you think people are not born equal. It'll help me narrow down on what you want to focus on rather than wasting a huge amount of time writing something you'll end up handwaving away anyway.

How about you also answer the other questions:

Do people = opinions? Are all opinions equally valid? Etc. Come on big boy, you can do it. I'll join with Erasmus and merrily turn down the snark if your contribution blossom beyond "that's all crap". HOW is it crap? WHY is it crap? On what basis do you know it to be crap? Explain its crapness to us. Come on Skeptic, ENGAGE with the issue, stop trolling.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Paul Flocken



Posts: 290
Joined: Dec. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,11:13   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,10:56)
I see no comparison between the Resurrection and supposed images on tortillas.  It is also impossible to evaluate the other listed "miracles" objectively.  What is more important is to understand what they mean rather than trying to prove whether or not they really happened.

skeptic, you miss the point that the virgin mary only appears where catholicism/protestantism are dominant religions.  I seriously doubt anyone in Kansas is ever going to see the image of the buddha in a water stain under a bridge abutment.  Likewise, no Hindu is ever going to see jesus in a piece of burnt toast.  Why does the god of the hebrew literature not reveal himself through miracles for anyone not descended from the hebrew tradition?

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"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie--deliberate, contrived, and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.  Belief in myths allows the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."-John F. Kennedy

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,11:29   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,10:40)
It goes to Arden's stupid question, maybe people need to see the Virgin Mary in their tortilla.  I for one do not believe that a fuzzy image of the Virgin Mary, Budda, Jesus or GWB in my tortilla means anything at all and to try to give any discussion about it credence is stupid.

But people who see the Virgin Mary in their tortillas think it's a real miracle. Why are they wrong? Why is it that that is *not* a miracle, but little Timmy in his hospital bed recovering against all the doctor's predictions IS a miracle?

Are you the one who gets to decide what a 'real' miracle is?

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,11:30   

Quote
I see no comparison between the Resurrection and supposed images on tortillas.

Really?  Why not?
 
Quote
It is also impossible to evaluate the other listed "miracles" objectively.


really, why not?

Quote
 What is more important is to understand what they mean rather than trying to prove whether or not they really happened.


Really?  Why should they mean anything if they never happened?  Why should we even bother with wondering what they mean, if they never even happened?  

Looking forward to this one.

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,11:33   

Quote
What is more important is to understand what they mean rather than trying to prove whether or not they really happened.


Wow.

So they have meaning, even if they're imaginary?

Wow.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Louis



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Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,11:40   

Quote (Arden Chatfield @ Feb. 27 2008,17:33)
Quote
What is more important is to understand what they mean rather than trying to prove whether or not they really happened.


Wow.

So they have meaning, even tho they might be imaginary?

Wow.

Hence why pissing about with Skeptic's presuppositionalist/relativist/solipsism is wholly boring. He's an intellectually dishonst shallow coward and utterly refuses to engage any issue or question beyond "that's crap" or "you're mean" or "other people think something else" as if these were somehow infallible revelations or novel contributions.

All anyone can try to do is crack the dome of dumb with which he tries to protect himself from reality.

Take the statement you quote of his. Important how? In what sense is this important? How do you know it's important? Who decides whether or not it's important or not? Why is whether it happened or not irrelevant to what it "means"? What does {insert specific miracle} "mean"? Who decides? How does one know? Etc etc etc etc etc etc etc. Skeptic cannot and will not answer these questions because they expose his faith for the shallow nonsense it is.

Louis

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Bye.

  
EoRaptor013



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,11:55   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,10:48)
Raptor, thanks for the correction, I was writing on the fly.

But, before you get too cocky, I wouldn't suggest you get into a discussion of the Bible with me.  Unless you have a few years to spare to catch up.
[snip...]

I'll see your smugness and raise you a cocky:

Bring it on, Jack.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:00   

Wow, where to start with all this?  Louis, I'll save you for last.

Paul, you miss the point.  The God of the Hebrew is not revealing himself through random debatable images on tortillas.  People may think that's what they see and that's why the distribution is what it is.  And more importantly, so what?  What if God puts his calling card on a chocolate cake, what does it mean?  Nothing.  As Richard is trying to point out, if God needs to constantly leave his calling card all over the place Faith in God is an incredibly weak thing.

Arden, that's just it.  People see what they want to, or need to, see.  I'll start paying attention when God stands up and says, "Hey, didya see that miracle I just did?" Until then you'll just have to excuse me if I don't care.  Anybody relying on miracles to justify their faith or critisize someone else's is in a sorry place to start with.

Erasmus and Arden, what's the point of an image of Budda on a Big Mac bun?  Even if it's authentic, what does it mean?  Again, nothing.  In comparison, what does the Resurrection mean, the Flood, The Plagues in Eygpt, Adam and Eve and the Apple?  Completely independent of whether or not they ever really happened do they have any meaning?  Of course they do and in the same way the story of the prodigal son has meaning even though it was just a story.  I hope you both can see the difference here.

Louis, now child you need to close you mouth and pay attention when your betters are speaking.  No man is created equal, or born as you suppose, in any sense but one and that one is debatable.  Genetically, intellectually, socially, opportunistically, geographically, etc and on and on.  You try to find a way that men are equal and I think you'll fall flat on your face.  Course, there is one way, but I know you're not going there.

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:01   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,10:56)
 What is more important is to understand what they mean rather than trying to prove whether or not they really happened.

So if it looks like the virgin Mary, that's the main thing, not if god actually did it. I think you're right, *nobody* knows Christianity like you!

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:01   

Raptor, *sigh*, alright go right ahead but don't say I didn't warn you.

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:06   

Quote
Erasmus and Arden, what's the point of an image of Budda on a Big Mac bun?  Even if it's authentic, what does it mean?  Again, nothing.  In comparison, what does the Resurrection mean, the Flood, The Plagues in Eygpt, Adam and Eve and the Apple?  Completely independent of whether or not they ever really happened do they have any meaning?  Of course they do and in the same way the story of the prodigal son has meaning even though it was just a story.  I hope you both can see the difference here.


Sorry, I'm still marvelling at the idea that if miracles were all imaginary it wouldn't have any negative bearing on their validity, and that this is somehow a RETORT to people who think that miracles are bogus.

So Skeptic, evidently you think SOME miracles are real, even tho you reject Jesus's-face-on-food miracles. What's your defining criteria to decide if it's the real thing? Should it just be obvious?

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:14   

I don't know that any miracles are real.  I don't even know if there is such a thing as a miracle or if this is just code for ignorance.  I do know that there is meaning in stories if only in an allegorical sense and they can lead us to important insights.

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:15   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,18:00)
Louis, now child you need to close you mouth and pay attention when your betters are speaking.  No man is created equal, or born as you suppose, in any sense but one and that one is debatable.  Genetically, intellectually, socially, opportunistically, geographically, etc and on and on.  You try to find a way that men are equal and I think you'll fall flat on your face.  Course, there is one way, but I know you're not going there.

Wow! Undeservingly patronising yet again!

Now go back and read what I wrote before:

Quote
People aren't born equal? You mean some are god's chosen and some aren't? You mean something else? So you simply mean that Linford Christie's innate running abilities are better than mine? Because I don't think anyone will disagree with that. Equal in terms of value and worth Skeptic, two arbitrary human concepts.


From here.

You and I were, as before, talking about different things. Interstingly this whole deal will end precisely where I predicted it will in another thread far far away, i.e. demonstrating the lack of any value the subjective has in any epistemological sense.

It may have been mentioned to your before Skeptic that you need to read what people have actually written, not what you think they have written. How many people have told you in a three page thread that you have failed to understand a simple point or have misconstrued their argument and run off to bash a straw man of your own imagining? It's a couple at least isn't it. Let that give you pause Skeptic. Think about it. Perhaps they are right, perhaps they are not, but at least consider the possibility that this is something you need to stop doing (i.e. stop going after what you think people are saying not what people are actually saying).

Oh and FYI Skeptic, yes indeed many of us (myself very much included) can be very rude to you and others. There is a reason for this: you (and others) make nonsensical, irrelevant or just outright dishonest statements. You refuse to back up your claims, refuse to engage any topic on anything approaching an intellectual level. We are at least rude with a point. You simply are being rude with no point, you aren't engaing what people are actually saying. Think on that. Maybe if you spent so me of that precious time thinking as opposed to regurgitating accusations you've made umpteen times now to no effect you'd make a coherent contribution. This might remove a huge quantity of snark from all sides of the equation. I may have suggested this before Skeptic. You ignored it then as you will undoubtedly do now, but try, you might be surprised. And given the level of abuse you chuck around pointlessly, I think you have no basis for your whining ot persecution complex. I'll offer again Skeptic: back up your claims, make reasonable arguments and you'll find that people can and will disagree with you perfectly amicably. Fail to do that and people will get pissed off with you.

It's all up to you as usual.

Louis

ETA: Hint: in the five point comedy gold for Skeptic, the point of which has been missed as usual, I've used two different meanings of the word "equal", let's see if Skeptic can understand the difference.

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Bye.

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:19   

To try this another way, was the Ressurction a miracle and why?  Because no one else has ever died and come back to life three days later?  Because people shouldn't be able to die and come back to life?  Because we don't understand how Jesus came back to life?

Which of these is important when evaluating the meaning and significance of Jesus coming back to life?  None of them.  If you believe he did then you're much more focused on why he came back to life and not how.  And if you don't believe he did and you're focused on the how then you're missing the point of why.

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:21   

Louis, you wasted all those words and never once addressed how men are equal in anyway.  Same old shoe.

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:21   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,12:19)
To try this another way, was the Ressurction a miracle and why?  Because no one else has ever died and come back to life three days later?  Because people shouldn't be able to die and come back to life?  Because we don't understand how Jesus came back to life?

Which of these is important when evaluating the meaning and significance of Jesus coming back to life?  None of them.  If you believe he did then you're much more focused on why he came back to life and not how.  And if you don't believe he did and you're focused on the how then you're missing the point of why.

And your still missing the main argument I'm advancing.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:29   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,18:21)
Louis, you wasted all those words and never once addressed how men are equal in anyway.  Same old shoe.

No Skeptic, I didn't, did you read what I wrote?

If you're talking about the empirically determinable aspects of humans then obviously and uncontroversially all humans are not equal. As noted before.

If you're talking about arbitrary human things like subjective worth or significance or what have you, i.e. concepts that cannot be quantified by the very nature of the concepts themselves, or if they are quantified it's done with reference to an arbitrary metric which is used to define context (gee, it seems I've said something about this before) and thus is at least quantifiable in relative terms only, then all humans are equal. If only because we can shift metrics/choose metrics which allow this.

So as usual Skeptic, you;re right about one thing, It IS the same old shoe, but the same old shoe is not me wasting words or failing to address the issues, it's you not reading and simply attacking straw man versions of what you *think* people are saying not what they are saying.

In other words Skeptic, you are trolling pure and simple. You aren't interested in discussion, just in annoying people.

Louis

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Bye.

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:30   

Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 27 2008,18:21)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,12:19)
To try this another way, was the Ressurction a miracle and why?  Because no one else has ever died and come back to life three days later?  Because people shouldn't be able to die and come back to life?  Because we don't understand how Jesus came back to life?

Which of these is important when evaluating the meaning and significance of Jesus coming back to life?  None of them.  If you believe he did then you're much more focused on why he came back to life and not how.  And if you don't believe he did and you're focused on the how then you're missing the point of why.

And your still missing the main argument I'm advancing.

Well THAT's a fucking shock!

Is anyone else bored with this tiresome troll/concern troll yet?

Louis

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Bye.

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:33   

Quote (Louis @ Feb. 27 2008,12:30)
Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 27 2008,18:21)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,12:19)
To try this another way, was the Ressurction a miracle and why?  Because no one else has ever died and come back to life three days later?  Because people shouldn't be able to die and come back to life?  Because we don't understand how Jesus came back to life?

Which of these is important when evaluating the meaning and significance of Jesus coming back to life?  None of them.  If you believe he did then you're much more focused on why he came back to life and not how.  And if you don't believe he did and you're focused on the how then you're missing the point of why.

And your still missing the main argument I'm advancing.

Well THAT's a fucking shock!

Is anyone else bored with this tiresome troll/concern troll yet?

Louis

Can we give him his own, padded thread?

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:35   

Quote
To try this another way, was the Ressurction a miracle and why?  Because no one else has ever died and come back to life three days later?  Because people shouldn't be able to die and come back to life?  Because we don't understand how Jesus came back to life?


Wait -- but what if the Resurrection simply never happened? Then it ain't a miracle anymore, no?

   
Quote
I don't even know if there is such a thing as a miracle or if this is just code for ignorance.  I do know that there is meaning in stories if only in an allegorical sense and they can lead us to important insights.


This doesn't feel terribly satisfying. I don't think parables and miracles are the same thing, or serve the same function. Parables serve as object lessons on how one might behave in real life. Miracles are 'created' to show that God is real and that faith has tangible roles in real life. Like it or not, they're meant to serve as proof. If the miracle is just imaginary, the proof evaporates. I mean, think about it: if someone supposedly has their cancer disappear due to a miracle, but it's just as likely that it disappeared due to treatment, how is that any kind of 'lesson'?

   
Quote
Louis, you wasted all those words and never once addressed how men are equal in anyway.  Same old shoe.

Based on what his wife has told me, Louis is significantly unequal in one particular way, ifyouknowwhatImeanandIthinkyoudo...

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:36   

Quote

Wait -- but what if the Resurrection simply never happened? Then it ain't a miracle anymore, no?


No! Then its a miracle that people believe in it!

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Reciprocating Bill



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:46   

I'm reading The Spatula Brain (courtesy of Albatrossity) and if I don't develop a brain tumor before I'm through that will be a miracle.

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Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Here’s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:47   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,18:19)
To try this another way, was the Ressurction a miracle and why?  Because no one else has ever died and come back to life three days later?  Because people shouldn't be able to die and come back to life?  Because we don't understand how Jesus came back to life?

Which of these is important when evaluating the meaning and significance of Jesus coming back to life?  None of them.  If you believe he did then you're much more focused on why he came back to life and not how.  And if you don't believe he did and you're focused on the how then you're missing the point of why.

You're flipping between two things as usual.

If Jesus never existed at all, if he never came back to life or was even alive to die in the first place this has some bearing on whether or not the story of the ressurection is objectively, unambiguously, verifiably true.

If all you seek to garner from the story is some allegory or parable or metaphor that neatly illuminates a particular aspect of the human condition then your bible is as good as a five year old's "Spot the Dog" book. Both provide an individual with an allegory or story or parable or metaphor that neatly illuminates a particular aspect of the human condition.

If you are saying something as uncontroversial as "stories and myths are useful to humans whether or not they are true in any objective sense" then no one disagrees with you. Not me, not PZ, not Dawkins, not even the most militant nasty atheist you can imagine. That demonstrably untrue stories still can possess some utilitarian value is as uncontroversial a fact as "earth goes round sun". Not novel, not ground breaking not worthy of you wasting your precious time telling us all something we a) don't disagree with and b) already knew much better than you do.

If you are trying to argue that because a story has utilitarian value it is therefore objectively true then you are wrong. Plain and simple. Want me to go into why? Ok then. It's a logical fallacy. The classic familiar example is an opposite case to this. If something is objectively true and has no use, that use does not affect whether or not it is objectively true. Or if something is objectively true and has been used to do something "bad" or "good" (those words will need contextual definition) then the consequences of that thing being true are still irrelevant to the truth of it. The fact that we are subject to gravity, undeniably so, does not mean that we should push people off cliffs. The use of a specific fact (or non- fact) does not determine it's truth, only careful determination of the evidence supporting that fact can do that.

If you are trying to argue that a story's utilitarian value is more important that whether or not that story is objectively true or not, then you are making a subjective value judgement you have no hope of justifying by any means unless you begin to define the context of it (gee, it seems like I've said something like this before too).

If Jesus never existed, then the story of his ressurection has exactly the same SUBJECTIVE value as any other untrue story. Again, unless as above, you can demonstrate that you have a means to distinguish between subjective claims IN THE ABSENCE OF CONTEXT (why is this all very familiar?). The utilitarian value of an untrue story lies again in the realm of the rationally determinable, that one story may be more or less useful than another is again uncontroversial, such utility is decided on the basis of the evidence. Again IN CONTEXT (a concept I defined at some length).

Get it yet?

Louis

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Bye.

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:50   

Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Feb. 27 2008,12:46)
I'm reading The Spatula Brain (courtesy of Albatrossity) and if I don't develop a brain tumor before I'm through that will be a miracle.

There once was a young man named bill
Who read a book that made him ill
with dualist pretenses
among its offenses
and writing, like, structured to kill.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
EoRaptor013



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:50   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,13:01)
Raptor, *sigh*, alright go right ahead but don't say I didn't warn you.

Before you go, weren't you going to show how advanced your understanding of the Bible is?

Let's try a simple one:

What effect did the Babylonian exile have on the development of Jewish, and ultimately Christian, theology? Please point to passages that support your view.

Thanks.

ETA: Is there a better thread for this discussion -- assuming there ends up being a discussion?

  
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:51   

Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Feb. 27 2008,12:46)
I'm reading The Spatula Brain (courtesy of Albatrossity) and if I don't develop a brain tumor before I'm through that will be a miracle.

You'll have to prove it really happened, otherwise only Skeptic will be impressed.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:52   

Quote (EoRaptor013 @ Feb. 27 2008,12:50)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,13:01)
Raptor, *sigh*, alright go right ahead but don't say I didn't warn you.

Before you go, weren't you going to show how advanced your understanding of the Bible is?

Let's try a simple one:

What effect did the Babylonian exile have on the development of Jewish, and ultimately Christian, theology? Please point to passages that support your view.

Thanks.

ETA: Is there a better thread for this discussion -- assuming there ends up being a discussion?

Oh, take him a away! Puh-lease!

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,12:52   

BTW I find it inexplicably hilarious that Skeptic, on having his arse handed to him yet again, on the other thread, even to the extent of conceding that he had to give some ground to me (a miracle if ever there were one), he seeks to start the SAME shit on another thread in the hope that people will have forgotten he had his arse handed to him. Twat!

Padded thread? I would suggest a tiled one.

With mirrors, sinks, toilets and soap if my hint isn;t clear enough already!

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,13:26   

First things first, there's about six books in the Bible relevant to the Babylonian exile so yes, that is much better addressed someplace else.

Louis, you've gotten so convoluted that I think you've confused yourself.  If the only means that man can be said to be equal are subjective, unquantifiable measures are you really prepared to stick with the claim that men are equal in these ways.  Better yet to just back off and say that no man is equal in any real sense rather than risk making a fool of yourself or more likely wasting time in trying to justify areas that are not universally agreed upon.

Now back to miracles.  If miracles really exist are the purposefully utilized by God to instill faith or are they human interpretations of supposed spiritual evens?  I for one lean towards the later.  Personally, some mornings I think it's a miracle I'm able to get out of bed.  Is that God telling me I should be thankful to be alive?  No, it's just me reflecting on how bad my back hurts.

The question as to whether Jesus ever truely lived in order to die and live again can not be answered.  No proof of his non-existance is forthcoming and wouldn't persuade believers even if it did appear.  Likewise, proof or disproof of the Ressurection is also irrelevant in an objective sense.  In fact, it's not even the significance of the Ressurection that is important.  Take Lazzarus, he came back to life and no one worships him.  What is important is the message especially since the method that the message was delivered is beyond inspection.

This is exactly why miracles are of no value in supporting or undermining theism.  They have no objective utility since it's not possible to attribute them directly to God and it's not even possible to prove that they actually exist.

  
C.J.O'Brien



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,13:27   

Quote (EoRaptor013 @ Feb. 27 2008,12:50)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,13:01)
Raptor, *sigh*, alright go right ahead but don't say I didn't warn you.

Before you go, weren't you going to show how advanced your understanding of the Bible is?

Let's try a simple one:

What effect did the Babylonian exile have on the development of Jewish, and ultimately Christian, theology? Please point to passages that support your view.

Thanks.

ETA: Is there a better thread for this discussion -- assuming there ends up being a discussion?

Yeah, apoplectic there did get all high and mighty about the bible, didn't he?

I'll bite, too.

Since the subject of this thread is miracles, maybe apoplectic would care to enlighten those of us who are clearly scripturally challenged about the miracles of Jesus.

Like, for instance, what passages in John point to the existence of a lost source, known as the Signs Gospel? What can we make of the interpretation of the miracles as "signs," and what were they signs of? Bonus points for discussion of the emphasis in Matthew and Luke on the Davidian geneology, why those two accounts might differ, and why the identification of Jesus with the house of David was significant to what groups of early Christians, and why?

Or perhaps apoplectic would like to hold forth on how the pattern and order of the miracle stories in Matthew and Luke suggest that those two writers had Mark as a common source?

We await your expertise, O enlightened one.

Edited to add: A different thread would be fine by me as well, as I can see that skeptic would rather avoid questions rather than bestow upon us the glory of his scriptural wisdom.

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skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,13:32   

C.J., it's quite obvious you know exactly what you're asking or you wouldn't have phrased it that manner.  But to be fair, if you're really interested in this discussion then you and I and Raptor can take this off to the side.  Otherwise, don't waste my time.

  
EoRaptor013



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,13:32   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,14:26)
First things first, there's about six books in the Bible relevant to the Babylonian exile so yes, that is much better addressed someplace else.
<snip>


Damn! Strategic error on my part; trying to be kind to my acquaintances here, I inadvertently gave septic a way out of answering my question! (Although his mention of six relevant books in the Bible probably demonstrates that he has no clue what I'm actually talking about.) Hint: note the word development.

Oh well, I never was any good at playing chess.

  
EoRaptor013



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,13:42   

CJ,
Were you the one who mentioned Bart Ehrman? I'd love to actually meet him, some day. I'm reading Misquoting Jesus right now. His Orthodox Corruption of Scripture is fascinating and revealing. Elaine Pagels's Beyond Belief is also very interesting.

Oh, wait, there's a book thread, isn't there.
<pushes keyboard away and runs>

0x1B

  
C.J.O'Brien



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,14:03   

See you on the book thread.

I've moved on to Crossan's The Historical Jesus. It's a terrific synthesis of cultural anthropology, archaeology, and exegesis. The one I picked up at the library by Ehrman is just called The New Testament. I've been looking for Misquoting Jesus, too, but it's new and so always checked out.

The point is, skeptic, plenty of us are interested in and know a fair amount about scripture. High-handed attempts at intimidation on that score are just an invitation for us to pile on.

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,14:04   

*sigh*

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,14:33   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,19:26)
First things first, there's about six books in the Bible relevant to the Babylonian exile so yes, that is much better addressed someplace else.

Louis, you've gotten so convoluted that I think you've confused yourself.  If the only means that man can be said to be equal are subjective, unquantifiable measures are you really prepared to stick with the claim that men are equal in these ways.  Better yet to just back off and say that no man is equal in any real sense rather than risk making a fool of yourself or more likely wasting time in trying to justify areas that are not universally agreed upon.

Now back to miracles.  If miracles really exist are the purposefully utilized by God to instill faith or are they human interpretations of supposed spiritual evens?  I for one lean towards the later.  Personally, some mornings I think it's a miracle I'm able to get out of bed.  Is that God telling me I should be thankful to be alive?  No, it's just me reflecting on how bad my back hurts.

The question as to whether Jesus ever truely lived in order to die and live again can not be answered.  No proof of his non-existance is forthcoming and wouldn't persuade believers even if it did appear.  Likewise, proof or disproof of the Ressurection is also irrelevant in an objective sense.  In fact, it's not even the significance of the Ressurection that is important.  Take Lazzarus, he came back to life and no one worships him.  What is important is the message especially since the method that the message was delivered is beyond inspection.

This is exactly why miracles are of no value in supporting or undermining theism.  They have no objective utility since it's not possible to attribute them directly to God and it's not even possible to prove that they actually exist.

Translation:

"I don't understand what you're saying Louis therefore you don't."

Wonderful!

Skeptic, occasionally it would be nice if you read what someone wrote. It might help make these threads into conversations. I explained what I meant by that statement, you can either a) accept that I meant what I said as I wrote it, or b) continue misreading and misunderstanding everyone and everything on this an other threads and simply carry on as you are bashing up straw men.

Remember: your lack of understanding doesn;t equate to me bneing a fool.

Oh and Skeptic, unlike you I have no fear of being wrong. Just demonstrate it rather than assert it would you.

Louis

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skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2008,15:27   

Louis, I accept that you don't understand what you're saying and in all probability you're just disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing.

Let's make this very simple.  In the question of the equality of the value of every man, how would we address that?  First let's define the scope of value and the conditions under which this defined value is equal.  That also requires a few assumptions but in the end, viola! All men are of equal value!

Or are they?

Of course they're not.  All we've done is constructed an imaginary box within which lives equal man.  This box has no real relevance and your box and my box and 1000 other boxes may be completely different.  So can we say that equal value man actually exists...only in our own individual minds.  So taken in that CONTEXT there is still no such thing as equality.

P.S. don't quote me on this but I'm pretty sure using both the bolding and capitalization means my bat is bigger than yours. Ha!

  
Amadan



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,03:49   

I find it significant that all revealed religions seem to include miracles as part of their mythology. As I understand it, psychologists attribute this to an economy of mental processing: given a world-view that includes an actively interventionist supernatural power, the simplest explanation of counterintuitive events is to attribute them to supernatural causes. This works for both 'good' miracles ("I can see again!") and for 'bad' ones (e.g. plagues, tsunamis, and other ahem Acts of God).

In the end it comes down to epistemology: are you prepared to count as true or factual a statement that is, on the available evidence, incapable of being falsified? If so, you are making an exception to the general rule of human conduct and discourse, and in my opinion you shift the burden of justification onto yourself.

Not altogether facetiously, you could argue that some miracles are arguments against theism. I have read that the spontaneous appearance of particles from the quantum foam can be shown to occur. Does this not militate against the need for a Creator?

There y'are, and €0.98 change.

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JoeG BTW dumbass- some variations help ensure reproductive fitness so they cannot be random wrt it.

   
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,05:10   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,21:27)
Louis, I accept that you don't understand what you're saying and in all probability you're just disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing.

Let's make this very simple.  In the question of the equality of the value of every man, how would we address that?  First let's define the scope of value and the conditions under which this defined value is equal.  That also requires a few assumptions but in the end, viola! All men are of equal value!

Or are they?

Of course they're not.  All we've done is constructed an imaginary box within which lives equal man.  This box has no real relevance and your box and my box and 1000 other boxes may be completely different.  So can we say that equal value man actually exists...only in our own individual minds.  So taken in that CONTEXT there is still no such thing as equality.

P.S. don't quote me on this but I'm pretty sure using both the bolding and capitalization means my bat is bigger than yours. Ha!

Skeptic,

What am *I* disagreeing with? I made a statement with reference to your "there are other opinions out there" drivel and you have seized on your interpretation of it and are running that horse to death despite the fact that I have been clear about what I mean. Is the word "subjective" too complex for you?

Do you think I am trying to priviledge one subjective idea over another (I'm not) or that I am some dogmatic egalitarian who demands all people are born equal regardless of the facts (I'm not)? As I have said so many times before, go back and read what I have actually written, not what you think I have written. It will make life so much simpler for all concerned.

Incidentally I notice you are desperate to force the issue away from your own claims. Are all opinions equal Skeptic? Do people = opinions? You also noted that my disagreement with these notions is "crap", and yet you seem curiously eager to avoid explaining that, seeking as you usually do to try to distract from the fact that, equally as usual, you are merely trolling the boards and being an annoying ignoramus.

Louis

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Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,06:09   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,14:32)
Otherwise, don't waste my time.

Irony.  It's what's for dinner.

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Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
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skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,07:04   

Louis, the real problem is you need to go back and read what you've written.  Your first premise is wrong, i.e. that all men are equal.  Your continuing argument is unfounded as there is no connection between people and opinions and all in all it was a useless post.  Whether people are equal has no bearing on whether opinions are equal.  The fact that all opinions are not equal does not necessarily imply that people are not equal. It's all just an attempt to be cute and sound like the smartest guy in the room and in the end the whole post is drivel.  That's just the point that I'm trying to make.  Go back and try again.

  
Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,07:13   

I'd like to see this thread move back towards "Miracles as an argument for theism" before it strays too far into "Whatever 'Skeptic' decides to show his ignorance about this time".

Enough de-railing of the threads, 'Skeptic'.

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Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
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Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,07:23   

I think this board is a miracle.  Imagine all the SLoT violated around here per atheist-day.  It's amazing.  Although I'm not sure that Skeptic has actually violated any SLoT yet.

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Paul Flocken



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,07:58   

Forgive me Lou, but I think I can see a possible answer for Louis and all men are equal.

Skeptic, In the eyes of the god of hebrew literature are not all men created equal?  (Not to say that they stay equal, only that they are created equal.)

eta: I promise not to digress again.  :)

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"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie--deliberate, contrived, and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.  Belief in myths allows the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."-John F. Kennedy

  
Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,08:17   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 28 2008,13:04)
Louis, the real problem is you need to go back and read what you've written.  Your first premise is wrong, i.e. that all men are equal.  Your continuing argument is unfounded as there is no connection between people and opinions and all in all it was a useless post.  Whether people are equal has no bearing on whether opinions are equal.  The fact that all opinions are not equal does not necessarily imply that people are not equal. It's all just an attempt to be cute and sound like the smartest guy in the room and in the end the whole post is drivel.  That's just the point that I'm trying to make.  Go back and try again.

It's not a premise, it's a light hearted throw away statement in a post about another topic. A topic incidentally that is one of your favourite concern trolls. Like I said Skeptic, I've clarified what I mean by it at least twice now. You STILL want to troll away bashing up straw men, so carry on, I can't stop you.

Equally I've never said that all opinions not being equal implies anything about people Skeptic (or indeed any of the things you claim I've said in your fantasy world). In fact, as usual I've said the very opposite. The person and the opinion are not linked in any way that has to do with "validity" or " worth" in any sense. Do you know what the argumentum ad hominem is? Do you know why that fallacy works both ways? I do.

Face it, you've seized on what you think is an error I've made. If you'd ever read and understood anything I've written on this a myriad other threads you'd know full well that what you think I've said is the polar opposite to what I've actually said. You've made some false equivalency as usual and are running with it because you are a troll. Not interested in discussion, just a pointless troll. Want proof? Easy: take your entire output on this thread alone as one example. In you come to the thread and what happens? Straight away you start accusing people of being idiots, not dealing with miracles and what have you as they *really* are (and yet are remarkably unforthcoming about this "reality" or answering questions) and amazingly several people mention to you that you are missing the point of what they are saying. When they try to clarify it for you you simply hand wave it away and carrry on regardless. This has been pointed out to you before by several people and every time it's been ignored. You can either start arguing with what people actually say, or you can continue arguing with the voices in your head. Either way it isn't any of us that end up looking like a moron.

You should notice I am far from the only one who's point you've missed. Again. Wake up and smell the...well whatever medication it is that you desperately need to take.

Louis

P.S. Paul, thanks for the help but I seriously don't need it when dealing with Skeptic. He has a deep rooted habit of bashing up strawmen, the day he deals with an actual argument anyone makes is the day I fall over dead from shock. He is an infantile little troll who is only out to concern troll and annoy. It is occasionally fun to poke the muppet and see him froth but beyond that there's nothing worth bothering with.

ETA: Apologies for further derailerisation.

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Louis



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,08:25   

Quote (Amadan @ Feb. 28 2008,09:49)
In the end it comes down to epistemology: are you prepared to count as true or factual a statement that is, on the available evidence, incapable of being falsified? If so, you are making an exception to the general rule of human conduct and discourse, and in my opinion you shift the burden of justification onto yourself.

Bingo!

It is an epistemological issue, and one that theists and believers of all stripes love to play fast and lose with. Personally I find it extremely hypocritical because in effect what they are doing is claiming one epoistemology is valid for their articles of faith and another is valid for the world around them. They preach the former but act on the latter.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, believers want all the benefits of reason but none of the consequences they find unpleasant. You can see the same attitude at work in reference to their holy scriptures with the "God says X but what I think he meant was Y" interpretational shennanigans.

"Miracles" are a great example of this. The variety of what a specific "miracle" "means" to various groups is enormous. Each insists it has the right "meaning". The question of how and why the claim this knowledge is an important epistemological question, the implicit claims it makes have consequences.

Louis

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Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,08:53   

Oooh Let Me Do ONe:

Epistemology is so boring.  I'm much more interested in how we know things.

it's all just opinions anyway?  when you get down to it I know the bible better than you anyway.  

Jesus not only rose from the dead but makes flowers open up in time for pollinators to visit them.  Does it every. single. day.  It's not important at all if this is true, the meaning of the story is enough.  Therefore it means something.  You do the math.  

You guys are mean.  I never said that.  When I said that I meant something different.  Its just your opinion.


Ok Who Am I?  No peeking.  Trick question, maybe!  maybe not!

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,10:56   

Well as much as i love getting my balls stomped on by a pointytoed high heeled boot (or in Kates case, a commando all terrain species of footwear, I thought I was on topic.  Since we are talking about miracles, i consider it a minor* miracle that it is rather hard to distinguish between FtK arguments and Skeptic arguments.  Note the *sigh* upthread.  DOES THAT QUALLIFIE FOR TEH MIRRICUL?

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,14:49   

Paul, that is actually the case I was alluding to but it is debatable and subject to belief.

Sorry, Louis, I guess I'm still not able to discern when you're being flippant or just plain stupid.

But to put things back on topic and restate my opinion simply, I don't think miracles can be used in either sense, to support or refute theism.  Anything beyond that is just justification for that belief and I'll leave it at that so as not to get accused of derailing the thread.

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,14:51   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 28 2008,14:49)
Paul, that is actually the case I was alluding to but it is debatable and subject to belief.

Sorry, Louis, I guess I'm still not able to discern when you're being flippant or just plain stupid.

But to put things back on topic and restate my opinion simply, I don't think miracles can be used in either sense, to support or refute theism.  Anything beyond that is just justification for that belief and I'll leave it at that so as not to get accused of derailing the thread.

Respectfully disagree. They are used top bolster a very week argument.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
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Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,16:38   



--------------
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skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,18:32   

If they are used in that way I would call that a misunderstanding of theology and a lack of faith...but I think you pointed that out, didn't you?

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,18:44   

Quote
But to put things back on topic and restate my opinion simply, I don't think miracles can be used in either sense, to support or refute theism.  Anything beyond that is just justification for that belief and I'll leave it at that so as not to get accused of derailing the thread.


Let me be first back on topic.

Yes, I agree with you.  Please note that this reduces the truth value of the virgin birth, the sun standing still, god's existence in general and also the sum of all the special pleadings of both testaments to be equivalent to the claim that, this very morning on my very own street, I saw the image of the baby jesus in the pattern of flies that were attacking a particularly nasty and huge piece of elephant dung.

And it is also notable that your claim not only reduces claims about miracles but ANY OBSERVATIONAL CLAIM to the same ontological status.

And that means that I can point at the sky and say 'LOOK, FOOL' so then you look and I slap you with the intestines of a great whale, and then you say 'What did you do, damn you' and I say 'What?'.  And you have no warrant for saying that I did any god damn thing because there is no way to tell whether or not such a thing happened or 'twas a miracle.

Opinions and say-so, skeptic.  That's what your epistemology boils down to.  That's fine and dandy, if you would be satisfied with the fruits of your laboring.  But you wish to move goalposts.  That's what gets most of us bent out of shape, not only with you but with the arguments from Hoo-Doo as evidence for the existence of Satan or what-have-you.  Regular Old Dishonest God-Damned Inconsistency.  That's all.

toodles

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,18:59   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 28 2008,18:32)
If they are used in that way I would call that a misunderstanding of theology and a lack of faith...but I think you pointed that out, didn't you?

The need for "faith" rather than "reason" is equally damning.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
EoRaptor013



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,22:11   

Quote (EoRaptor013 @ Feb. 27 2008,14:32)
 
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 27 2008,14:26)
First things first, there's about six books in the Bible relevant to the Babylonian exile so yes, that is much better addressed someplace else.
<snip>


Damn! Strategic error on my part; trying to be kind to my acquaintances here, I inadvertently gave septic a way out of answering my question! (Although his mention of six relevant books in the Bible probably demonstrates that he has no clue what I'm actually talking about.) Hint: note the word development.

Oh well, I never was any good at playing chess.

Well, I did foobar the situation by asking if another thread was more appropriate, nevertheless, I note that septic hasn't even provided a teaser answer to the questions CJ and I asked. And, of course, he hasn't shown the least sign of recognition that some of us Darwinistas might know as much, if not more, about the Bible than he does.

Years to catch up, indeed.

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,22:45   

Sorry, Eramus, I think that's way off topic.  You've stepped beyond the question as to whether or not miracles can or should be used as proof for theism to condemnation of theism because of the claim of miracles.  At least that's how I read it, correct me if I'm wrong.

Richard, I'm not sure you can have it both ways.  Either resorting to miracles to prop up faith is a sign of weakness or not needing miracles but relying on faith is a sign of weakness seems to be mutually exclusive.

Raptor, no I was serious.  You want to have a serious discussion about the Bible with the hopes of learning something or teaching me (or whomever) something about the Bible then I'm all for it.  Fire up another thread and let's have at it.  But don't think that just because you read a book bashing the Bible that you know anything about what the Bible says.  From the comments I've seen on this board I'd have to rate over-all Bible literacy at a D (and that includes Ftk, Dave and Hero).

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,22:49   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 28 2008,22:45)
Richard, I'm not sure you can have it both ways.  Either resorting to miracles to prop up faith is a sign of weakness or not needing miracles but relying on faith is a sign of weakness seems to be mutually exclusive.

false dilemma..

My point is that a logical, complete message should be enough.

No miracles required. No faith required.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
J. O'Donnell



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,23:18   

I do not believe Miracles occur, because they would on some level bend free will such as if God intervened to stop someone from committing suicide [as an example]. Let's take a hypothetical though;

In this scenario, two cars have crashed into one another in a horrific smash, with one individual who is drunk and another who was just driving in the wrong place at the wrong time.

1) The drunk driver is killed instantly and so is the unfortunate person in the other vehicle.

2) The drunk driver is thrown clear of the vehicle and survives with minor injuries, while the other person is killed instantly.

3) The drunk driver is killed instantly, while the other person is merely thrown aside and not injured severely.

4) Neither is killed or harmed in any manner by the smash.

Which of these constitutes a 'miracle', for whom and for what reasons? Do none of them? What about if both were atheists? Both were christian? Both were muslim?

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My blog: Animacules

   
swbarnes2



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 28 2008,23:44   

Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 28 2008,22:49)
My point is that a logical, complete message should be enough.

No miracles required. No faith required.


Well, I think that history shows us that for most people, logic and reason aren't enough.  People have to be trained to be logically rigorous, trained to realize that they have to live without utter certainty.  If you aren't of a mind to accept that as "enough", then that won't be enough.

I think that you are assuming that all religious people use faith and miracles as kind of a poor man's version of reason and evidence.

And while there are a lot of silly people who do this, its not universal.

But that's true of every human endevor.  People, left to their own devices will get things wrong, and things get wronger very fast.  There are even the occasional obnoxious atheist who demonstrates this, as much as that fact makes atheists cringe.

It is a daily task to stay aware of one's own worldview, to make sure it isn't careening towards stupidity and hurtfulness.  The problem with religion it drifts very easily into a mode where it deprecates and scorns the only methods people have of monitoring that: criticism and reality testing.

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,00:59   

Quote (swbarnes2 @ Feb. 28 2008,23:44)
Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 28 2008,22:49)
My point is that a logical, complete message should be enough.

No miracles required. No faith required.


Well, I think that history shows us that for most people, logic and reason aren't enough.  People have to be trained to be logically rigorous, trained to realize that they have to live without utter certainty.  If you aren't of a mind to accept that as "enough", then that won't be enough.

I think that you are assuming that all religious people use faith and miracles as kind of a poor man's version of reason and evidence.

And while there are a lot of silly people who do this, its not universal.

But that's true of every human endevor.  People, left to their own devices will get things wrong, and things get wronger very fast.  There are even the occasional obnoxious atheist who demonstrates this, as much as that fact makes atheists cringe.

It is a daily task to stay aware of one's own worldview, to make sure it isn't careening towards stupidity and hurtfulness.  The problem with religion it drifts very easily into a mode where it deprecates and scorns the only methods people have of monitoring that: criticism and reality testing.

No, a divinely crafted message could be simple, complete and axiomatically persuasive.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,11:08   

Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 28 2008,22:49)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 28 2008,22:45)
Richard, I'm not sure you can have it both ways.  Either resorting to miracles to prop up faith is a sign of weakness or not needing miracles but relying on faith is a sign of weakness seems to be mutually exclusive.

false dilemma..

My point is that a logical, complete message should be enough.

No miracles required. No faith required.

Call me confused, but I don't see how you can have a belief in God and not rely on faith...

  
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,11:21   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,11:08)
Quote (Richardthughes @ Feb. 28 2008,22:49)
Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 28 2008,22:45)
Richard, I'm not sure you can have it both ways.  Either resorting to miracles to prop up faith is a sign of weakness or not needing miracles but relying on faith is a sign of weakness seems to be mutually exclusive.

false dilemma..

My point is that a logical, complete message should be enough.

No miracles required. No faith required.

Call me confused, but I don't see how you can have a belief in God and not rely on faith...

If he's omnipotent, and wanted you to know, you'd know.
Plus, you could meet him.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,13:45   

That requires making an assumption about his intentions and I'm not prepared to make that assumption.

Also, there is a certain school of thought that says faith is required because if not the choices to follow God would be easy.  If he's obvious and accessable then there's no reason to doubt him and too much pressure not to stray.  Almost like what O'Donnell says, there'd be no more free will.

  
keiths



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,13:48   

Allow me to spell out Richard's point in a little more detail.

The typical theist believes the following:

1. God exists.
2. God is omniscient.
3. God is omnipotent.
4. God wants every one of us to know him and accept his message.

If these four statements are true, what can we conclude?

2a. If God is omniscient, then he knows exactly what conditions are required to convince each of us to believe in him.
3a. If God is omnipotent, then he is capable of bringing about those conditions.
4a. If he wants us to believe in him, then he will provide us with those conditions.

Yet not all of us believe in him, and so at least one of those four assumptions must be incorrect.

A Calvinist like Heddle would argue that #4 is incorrect, because God does not want all of us to know him.  Only some of us are predestined to be saved; the rest are predestined to suffer eternal damnation.  This position is at least logically consistent, though it paints God in a rather unflattering light.

Others argue that #4 is incorrect because God only wants us to believe in him if we freely choose to do so.  According to them, if God provided overwhelming evidence of his existence, then he would in effect be forcing us to believe in him.  We would all be deprived of our free will, contrary to God's intention.

This argument falls apart on closer examination.  Suppose God only presents evidence strong enough to convince half of us that he exists.  Well, according to the logic of the argument, half of us are then being deprived of our free will.

In fact, the only way for God to preserve everyone's free will, by that argument, is for him to make sure that nobody is convinced by the evidence.  Quite a different picture from the one that most theists paint.

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number.  -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
J-Dog



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,14:15   

Quote (keiths @ Feb. 29 2008,13:48)
Allow me to spell out Richard's point in a little more detail.

The typical theist believes the following:

1. God exists.
2. God is omniscient.
3. God is omnipotent.
4. God wants every one of us to know him and accept his message.

If these four statements are true, what can we conclude?

2a. If God is omniscient, then he knows exactly what conditions are required to convince each of us to believe in him.
3a. If God is omnipotent, then he is capable of bringing about those conditions.
4a. If he wants us to believe in him, then he will provide us with those conditions.

Yet not all of us believe in him, and so at least one of those four assumptions must be incorrect.

A Calvinist like Heddle would argue that #4 is incorrect, because God does not want all of us to know him.  Only some of us are predestined to be saved; the rest are predestined to suffer eternal damnation.  This position is at least logically consistent, though it paints God in a rather unflattering light.

Others argue that #4 is incorrect because God only wants us to believe in him if we freely choose to do so.  According to them, if God provided overwhelming evidence of his existence, then he would in effect be forcing us to believe in him.  We would all be deprived of our free will, contrary to God's intention.

This argument falls apart on closer examination.  Suppose God only presents evidence strong enough to convince half of us that he exists.  Well, according to the logic of the argument, half of us are then being deprived of our free will.

In fact, the only way for God to preserve everyone's free will, by that argument, is for him to make sure that nobody is convinced by the evidence.  Quite a different picture from the one that most theists paint.

Keiths:  I think what you are saying is known as the Epicuras Paradox:

"Either God wants to abolish evil, and cannot; or he can, but does not want to.

If he wants to, but cannot, he is impotent. If he can, but does not want to, he is wicked.

If God can abolish evil, and God really wants to do it, why is there evil in the world?" —

Epicurus, as quoted in 2000 Years of Disbelief

Which just goes to show, they knew Skeptic was full of shit,  2500 years ago.

--------------
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,14:31   

I would just add:

5) Man must choose

That satisfies the equation especially in light on the story of the Garden and it's essentially what the whole New Testament is about.  Who can say why God doesn't overwhelm us with proof to make it easy for us, maybe he thought trees would be enough.  Maybe this whole process is a learning experience and it would cheat you out of the growth that you're going to undergo.  I don't really know nor do I care because it's beyond my capability of answering in this life and therefore a waste of time.  Maybe you should ask him when the time comes, I'm sure he's got a pretty good answer for you.

  
Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,14:39   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,15:31)
I don't really know nor do I care because it's beyond my capability of answering in this life and therefore a waste of time.

Seems like that could wrap up several discussions, actually.

--------------
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keiths



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,15:18   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,14:31)
I would just add:

5) Man must choose

Adding a premise doesn't solve anything.  We already know that at least one of the four original premises is wrong.  You need to reject one (or more) of them.

Quote
Who can say why God doesn't overwhelm us with proof to make it easy for us, maybe he thought trees would be enough.

If he thought trees would be enough, then he's not omniscient.  You've rejected premise #2.

Quote
Maybe this whole process is a learning experience and it would cheat you out of the growth that you're going to undergo.

But people still die as unbelievers.  Why does God withhold this "learning experience" from some, but not others?  

Quote
I don't really know nor do I care because it's beyond my capability of answering in this life and therefore a waste of time.

You don't care that you're embracing a logically inconsistent position?  It doesn't matter to you whether what you believe is true??    

Quote
Maybe you should ask him when the time comes, I'm sure he's got a pretty good answer for you.

If I get the chance to ask him, I will.  In the meantime, truth matters, and I'll continue to argue against the kind of irrationality you're surrendering to.

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number.  -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,15:24   

keiths skeptic doesn't give a damn, logic is just opinion to him.

anyway
Quote
If I get the chance to ask him, I will.


If such a beast exists I am going to slap the absolute fuck juice out of this sonofabitch.  

A)  He'll know it was coming
B)  It won't hurt such a god-beast one eensy weeny little bit
C)  Drinks all around, in Hell.  A shitty little bar in a shitty little town that is also where Sternburglar-story goes to try to drink himself to Bolivia.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
J-Dog



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,15:36   

Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Feb. 29 2008,15:24)
keiths skeptic doesn't give a damn, logic is just opinion to him.

anyway
 
Quote
If I get the chance to ask him, I will.


If such a beast exists I am going to slap the absolute fuck juice out of this sonofabitch.  

A)  He'll know it was coming
B)  It won't hurt such a god-beast one eensy weeny little bit
C)  Drinks all around, in Hell.  A shitty little bar in a shitty little town that is also where Sternburglar-story goes to try to drink himself to Bolivia.

Hey, stand in line - and no cuts!

I think I'm getting to him first, and he's got one hell of a lot of 'splainin' to do...

I'm gonna be more pissed at "Him" than a red-headed ID Supporter with a bad report card.

The list of "The Lord" being a total dick is varied and long-term throughout history.  And, conveniently enough, some of "His" earliest supporters were dumb enough to write it down!  Every murder and incitement to riot...  attempted murders, incest, the list goes on, and that sum-beatch is toast.

Christ on a Crutch, even GW and Cheney aren't that effing dumb!  Writing it down!?!

So, yeah dude.  You got him when I'm through with him.

--------------
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,15:44   

Idiocy.

  
Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,15:48   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,16:44)
Idiocy.

Irony.

--------------
Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,15:53   

Quote (keiths @ Feb. 29 2008,13:48)
Allow me to spell out Richard's point in a little more detail.

The typical theist believes the following:

1. God exists.
2. God is omniscient.
3. God is omnipotent.
4. God wants every one of us to know him and accept his message.

If these four statements are true, what can we conclude?

2a. If God is omniscient, then he knows exactly what conditions are required to convince each of us to believe in him.
3a. If God is omnipotent, then he is capable of bringing about those conditions.
4a. If he wants us to believe in him, then he will provide us with those conditions.

Yet not all of us believe in him, and so at least one of those four assumptions must be incorrect.

A Calvinist like Heddle would argue that #4 is incorrect, because God does not want all of us to know him.  Only some of us are predestined to be saved; the rest are predestined to suffer eternal damnation.  This position is at least logically consistent, though it paints God in a rather unflattering light.

Others argue that #4 is incorrect because God only wants us to believe in him if we freely choose to do so.  According to them, if God provided overwhelming evidence of his existence, then he would in effect be forcing us to believe in him.  We would all be deprived of our free will, contrary to God's intention.

This argument falls apart on closer examination.  Suppose God only presents evidence strong enough to convince half of us that he exists.  Well, according to the logic of the argument, half of us are then being deprived of our free will.

In fact, the only way for God to preserve everyone's free will, by that argument, is for him to make sure that nobody is convinced by the evidence.  Quite a different picture from the one that most theists paint.

Plus, with regard to authorship, omnipotence and omniscience - he made you knowing all the choice you would make, so really he made them, because he could have made you *any* you that would make *any* set of choices.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,17:33   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,14:31)
I would just add:

5) Man must choose

That satisfies the equation especially in light on the story of the Garden and it's essentially what the whole New Testament is about.  Who can say why God doesn't overwhelm us with proof to make it easy for us, maybe he thought trees would be enough.  

If He thought that, then clearly God is not omniscient.

 
Quote
Maybe this whole process is a learning experience and it would cheat you out of the growth that you're going to undergo.  I don't really know nor do I care because it's beyond my capability of answering in this life and therefore a waste of time.  Maybe you should ask him when the time comes, I'm sure he's got a pretty good answer for you.


But Skeptic, what if the Zoroastrians or the Hindus are right, and you got everything wrong?  :angry:

[EDIT: SHIT! Keiths beat me to point #1!]

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,17:36   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,15:44)
Idiocy.

Skeptic, won't you tell us what unicorns really look like?

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,18:26   

If so you won't see me running up to the Hindu gods bitch slapping them and demanding an explanation.  I can accept that I may be wrong but I choose not to be stupid.

Just out of curiosity, what does omniscient and omnipotent really and from who's perspective?

  
J-Dog



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,19:16   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,18:26)
If so you won't see me running up to the Hindu gods bitch slapping them and demanding an explanation.  I can accept that I may be wrong but I choose not to be stupid.

Just out of curiosity, what does omniscient and omnipotent really and from who's perspective?

skeptic - I think you just don't get it, and probably never will be able to break yourself free from your conditioning.  I feel sorry for you dude.    

Regarding your "demanding an explanation" comment.  I think you misunderstood.  The time for "explanations", (read as "excuses"), is long gone.  That sucker is toast for a whole lot of past crimes.  

You said:  "Just out of curiosity, what does omniscient and omnipotent really and from who's perspective?

Seems pretty self-explanatory to me, but I recommend an on-line dictionary for the definitions if you are having trouble understanding the terms.  I am not sure why it matter "from who's perspective".  

Are you suggesting that "God" might have a different perspective from me?  Well, since he exists only in your mind, I can't see as how this means anything at all to me, unless you listen to Him when he tells you to stone the Idoloter... you're not hearing any voices are you?

--------------
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
keiths



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,19:23   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,18:26)
I can accept that I may be wrong...

Can you?  You've been shown that your position is internally inconsistent, and that adding the premise "man must choose" solves nothing--yet you don't seem any closer to actually acknowledging your error.

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number.  -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,19:28   

LOL, that was a good one Keiths.

Being the compassionate guy that I am I hope for you guys sake that I am wrong.  I actually occupy the most practical position as I have nothing to lose whereas you guys have everything and more to lose.  Good luck and we'll see how it turns out.

  
Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,20:31   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,20:28)
LOL, that was a good one Keiths.

Being the compassionate guy that I am I hope for you guys sake that I am wrong.  I actually occupy the most practical position as I have nothing to lose whereas you guys have everything and more to lose.  Good luck and we'll see how it turns out.

Pascal's wager?  Holy crap, you're scraping the bottom now.

--------------
Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
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skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,20:35   

Sorry, not familiar with that one.

  
Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,20:36   

There is nothing new under the sun.

ETA:  It's the weakest argument you could possibly make short of "Denyse O'Leary said so".

Edited by Lou FCD on Feb. 29 2008,21:39

--------------
Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
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Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,21:08   

Quote
Being the compassionate guy that I am I hope for you guys sake that I am wrong.  I actually occupy the most practical position as I have nothing to lose whereas you guys have everything and more to lose.  Good luck and we'll see how it turns out.




Hey, that is the most practical position!!!  Not to mention, evidence free!

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,22:18   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,18:26)
If so you won't see me running up to the Hindu gods bitch slapping them and demanding an explanation.  I can accept that I may be wrong but I choose not to be stupid.

Just out of curiosity, what does omniscient and omnipotent really and from who's perspective?

omniscient = knows everything
omnipotent = can do anything

It's not hard, Skeptic. A dictionary coulda told you that.

[insert badly-needed eye-rolling emoticon here]

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 29 2008,22:22   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,19:28)
LOL, that was a good one Keiths.

Being the compassionate guy that I am I hope for you guys sake that I am wrong.  I actually occupy the most practical position as I have nothing to lose whereas you guys have everything and more to lose.  Good luck and we'll see how it turns out.

Really? You're a piss-poor Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/Zoroastrian/Yazidi, Skeptic. I don't see why you're in such a great position. Do you, like, know something we don't?

--------------
"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
hereoisreal



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,07:26   

Feb. 28 2008,22:45  Skeptic said:


" From the comments I've seen on this board I'd have to rate over-all Bible literacy at a D (and that includes Ftk, Dave and Hero)."
****************************************

As you know, I have a thread here titled "Zero resurrected ".  I checked through it and
couldn't find your posts or comments.  I invite you to justify my "D" grade.


Skeptic, I am neither a Christian or skeptic.  I fall somewhere in the middle.  I believe in
a creator and I believe he wrote all the bible, not just the new testament as you suggested.
I find a plan of salvation in the OT which you and other Christians overlook.  It is quoted
in one of my posts.
****************************************
Now, back to the topic of miracles:
I'll re-post my first comment on this thread, since it was not addressed:

Like chance, an unusual event, some might call a miracle, doesn't have to break any law  of physics.
Beating the odds can always be attributed to either skill or luck.  Like Tiger Woods says, " The more I practice, the luckier I get."
And the realist says, "It's not hard to walk on water if you know where the stumps are."
******************************************
Pilot asked Jesus to do a miracle to prove he was God's son.
Sometimes he shows me something, even when I don't ask.

Story # 337 on my website:

AAAAASK                                      
           Columbus Day, 1996, while driving down Garden Street, I thought, “Lord, you said, ‘Ask, and it shall be given.’ I’ve got it all. What else could I want?  Your plans work out so well.  I dare not ask for anything.”  I glanced at an auto tag ahead of me.  It said, “AAAAASK”.

Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,07:45   

hero, God didn't write the Bible nor does he claim he did.  Man wrote the Bible as inspired by God.  That leaves interpretation open not just at the point of the writer but the reader too.

D-

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,08:17   



lord.  skeptic if what you say is true then how can you justify saying 'it is written' as evidence for anything?  it is also written all kinds of other silly and dumb things.  and god reveals herself to zero in such manners as he reports, then what privileges the bible anyway?

never mind.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
hereoisreal



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,08:36   

Skiptic, that's splitting hairs and you know it.

Did God inspire men to write the OT?  I can
pull up your post where you infer he didn't.

Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,14:32   

One thing that strikes me as odd is this:

If god is omni-max, then why would any miracle be necessary?  Why would god ever use a miracle?  I think that this creates a catch 22 for theists.  Miracles are generally seen as evidence that god exists and meddles in the affairs of humans, but this is an implicit rejection of the idea of an omni-max god that is capable of getting it right the first time...unless the miracles were planned ahead of time so that god could cause some specific thing to happen, but then again, why couldn't god simply create a universe where the miracles were not necessary?

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,14:36   

Hey Skeptic,
How can you attack us for being ignorant and really not know what omnipotent and omniscient mean?  How can you attack us and really not know what Pascal's Wager is or why is so spectacularly bad as an argument?

It boggles the mind.

ETA:
Quote
Being the compassionate guy that I am I hope for you guys sake that I am wrong.

This just underscores how "loving" your god is.

  
bystander



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Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,15:55   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,06:45)
That requires making an assumption about his intentions and I'm not prepared to make that assumption.

Also, there is a certain school of thought that says faith is required because if not the choices to follow God would be easy.  If he's obvious and accessable then there's no reason to doubt him and too much pressure not to stray.  Almost like what O'Donnell says, there'd be no more free will.

Moses and the Jews certainly knew god when they left Egypt and they still strayed. Why was the unchanging god so keen to have himself known then and not now. Even in the Acts of the apostles has overt acts of God.

I once heard a good comedy riff where god had used up his advertising budget by 100AD and all he could afford now was the occassional impression on a piece of toast.

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,16:16   

Quote (skeptic @ Feb. 29 2008,15:31)
I don't really know nor do I care because it's beyond my capability of answering in this life and therefore a waste of time.

Isn't this contradictory to when you said:
Quote
If I was as ignorant as to the nature of God as these posts exhibit then I would have trouble accepting the concept too.

If god is beyond your capability to answer in this lifetime, then how is it that you can know the nature of god?

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,16:29   

GCT, I'm not sure if you noticed but there is a long boring history of skeptic making these sorts of claims.  Nonetheless, you gotta love the guy.

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,16:39   

Quote (Erasmus, FCD @ Mar. 01 2008,17:29)
GCT, I'm not sure if you noticed but there is a long boring history of skeptic making these sorts of claims.  Nonetheless, you gotta love the guy.

Oh, I'm well aware of it.

I'm well aware of the projection of him accusing us of being ignorant of Xianity and making straw man arguments, while he parades around telling us all that atheism is a religion and explaining to atheists what atheists believe even when they try to tell him he's wrong.  I mean, just as an example....

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,18:25   

the simple answer is what is a miracle to us is not a miracle to God.  God's not doing miracles, we just don't understand what's going on.  You think God sits back and says "Holy crap! How'd I do that?"  Then again he might, how the hell would I know.

Also, the question was rheotorical.

Hero, I think you're getting some things mixed up.  A mountain stream may inspire me to write a poem but it doesn't have editorial power.

  
Lou FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,18:40   

mmmmm....

Logic pretzels.

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Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
I think I might love you. Don't tell Deadman -Wolfhound

Work-friendly photography
NSFW photography

   
J-Dog



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,20:43   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,18:25)
the simple answer is what is a miracle to us is not a miracle to God.  God's not doing miracles, we just don't understand what's going on.  You think God sits back and says "Holy crap! How'd I do that?"  Then again he might, how the hell would I know.

Also, the question was rheotorical.

Hero, I think you're getting some things mixed up.  A mountain stream may inspire me to write a poem but it doesn't have editorial power.

Wrong again.  

Mountain streams do have editorial power.  Exhibit A -The Grand Canyon.  That's some pretty strong deletion power exhibited right there...

re:  ...we just don't understand what's going on".

What's with this "we" stuff.

Mass hyteria and Bronze Age Marketing works just fine for me.

--------------
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,21:05   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,19:25)
the simple answer is what is a miracle to us is not a miracle to God.  God's not doing miracles, we just don't understand what's going on.  You think God sits back and says "Holy crap! How'd I do that?"  Then again he might, how the hell would I know.

Then why don't miracles conform to scientific scrutiny?

  
hereoisreal



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 01 2008,21:24   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,18:25)
Hero, I think you're getting some things mixed up.  A mountain stream may inspire me to write a poem but it doesn't have editorial power.

Skeptic, don't judge a brook by his brother.

Zero, my name is Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,01:12   

Quote (hereoisreal @ Mar. 01 2008,21:24)
Zero, my name is Zero

Don't be so modest. You're a hero to us.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,09:04   

Quote (GCT @ Mar. 01 2008,21:05)
Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,19:25)
the simple answer is what is a miracle to us is not a miracle to God.  God's not doing miracles, we just don't understand what's going on.  You think God sits back and says "Holy crap! How'd I do that?"  Then again he might, how the hell would I know.

Then why don't miracles conform to scientific scrutiny?

They do.  Take the little boy.  He died, technically, and came back in a purely biological way.  Just because the doctors can not explain it doesn't mean that the laws of the universe suddenly broke down in that emergency room.  At some point, we as humans will have to accept our limitations, cognitively, and realize that we're never going to know the answer to every question.  But just because we don't know the answer doesn't mean that the universe stopped in place for our benefit or detriment.  I mean, really, who do we think we are?

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,09:28   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 02 2008,10:04)
Quote (GCT @ Mar. 01 2008,21:05)
Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,19:25)
the simple answer is what is a miracle to us is not a miracle to God.  God's not doing miracles, we just don't understand what's going on.  You think God sits back and says "Holy crap! How'd I do that?"  Then again he might, how the hell would I know.

Then why don't miracles conform to scientific scrutiny?

They do.  Take the little boy.  He died, technically, and came back in a purely biological way.  Just because the doctors can not explain it doesn't mean that the laws of the universe suddenly broke down in that emergency room.  At some point, we as humans will have to accept our limitations, cognitively, and realize that we're never going to know the answer to every question.  But just because we don't know the answer doesn't mean that the universe stopped in place for our benefit or detriment.  I mean, really, who do we think we are?

Sure, take the little boy, if your account is accurate, which we can assume for argument sake that it is.

Are you contending that was a miracle?  Last I checked you were not willing to make that judgement.  Yet, we can study it and come to a scientific explanation.  Let's say we figure out what happened, is it no longer a miracle?

What about the sun standing still in the sky?  If that were to happen, it would violate the laws of physics, plain and simple.  This would be an unambiguous miracle, and yet it would not simply be a case of ignorance on our part.

In any case, this is sort of a side topic, right?  If god needs to intervene at all by saving little boys who were clinically dead, then what does that say about this god and how well he should be able to set up a system that doesn't require intervention?

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,10:43   

check CNN, it was about two weeks ago in California.

I'm saying peopled called that a miracle and it was or it wasn't depending upon your definition.  What were the odds that the conditions present would result in his living, now that's a "miracle."  Others would say that the Hand of God healed him and he lived, that's their miracle.

As far as the sun standing still, that happened, what? 3000 years ago, give or take?  We can't possibly assess scientifically what really may have happened or what people thought they saw.  Quite possibly they saw a phenomena that they couldn't explain and called it a miracle, who knows?

Finally, this is the common mistake made.  Do we know that God needs to intervene in little boys' lives?  No.  We don't even know that miracles occurred and yet we're making judgments upon the nature of God based upon our ignorance.  Natural, I'll give you, but ultimately unfounded.

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,10:49   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 02 2008,11:43)
I'm saying peopled called that a miracle and it was or it wasn't depending upon your definition.

No, it depends on whether god came down and intervened or not.  Simply because I think it's a miracle doesn't make it one anymore than my thinking it's not a miracle makes it not a miracle.
Quote
As far as the sun standing still, that happened, what? 3000 years ago, give or take?  We can't possibly assess scientifically what really may have happened or what people thought they saw.

We can assess, scientifically, that the sun did not stand still in the sky for 24 hours, unless the laws of the universe were suspended or altered.
Quote
Finally, this is the common mistake made.  Do we know that God needs to intervene in little boys' lives?  No.  We don't even know that miracles occurred and yet we're making judgments upon the nature of God based upon our ignorance.  Natural, I'll give you, but ultimately unfounded.

But, that's the whole point isn't it?  Many people think miracles do occur, but if they do then it speaks against god being omni-max, which many people hold to.  It speaks against god being a reasonable and rational venture.  For the sake of argument, we can assume that god does perform miracles or that he doesn't and still discuss the implications of it either way.  Do you really not understand this?

  
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,11:27   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 02 2008,09:04)
 
Quote (GCT @ Mar. 01 2008,21:05)
   
Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 01 2008,19:25)
the simple answer is what is a miracle to us is not a miracle to God.  God's not doing miracles, we just don't understand what's going on.  You think God sits back and says "Holy crap! How'd I do that?"  Then again he might, how the hell would I know.

Then why don't miracles conform to scientific scrutiny?

They do.  Take the little boy.  He died, technically, and came back in a purely biological way.  Just because the doctors can not explain it doesn't mean that the laws of the universe suddenly broke down in that emergency room.  At some point, we as humans will have to accept our limitations, cognitively, and realize that we're never going to know the answer to every question.  But just because we don't know the answer doesn't mean that the universe stopped in place for our benefit or detriment.

But why is it any less silly to assume that Bog intervened from His busy work of creating universes to make Timmy walk again? Isn't that basically an admission that we have no idea what's going on, but in another guise? Believe me, saying 'Goddidit' has nothing to do with admitting that we don't understand everything going on in the universe. To the contrary, it's an extremely desperate attempt to MAKE an explanation.

 
Quote
As far as the sun standing still, that happened, what? 3000 years ago, give or take?  We can't possibly assess scientifically what really may have happened or what people thought they saw.  Quite possibly they saw a phenomena that they couldn't explain and called it a miracle, who knows?


The sun stood still? Or, maybe:

1) they made it up
2) the person who wrote it down made it up
3) maybe it was a mistranslation
4) maybe it was a VERY poorly remembered eclipse

Cuz, remember, we have no proof that this, like, happened. Remember?

If you had more exposure to people doing actual science, you'd remember that scientists admit that they don't have an explanation all the time. In fact, see here for some interesting examples. Are any of them 'miracles'?

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,17:37   

GCT, I think we're talking about two different things or from different viewpoints.  A miracle is whatever the person describing it perceives it to be and they perceive it in that way for their own reasons.  So far God has not entered the picture and it is completely debatable that a miracle has actually occurred.  That's where we're at in my mind.

I would say that a miracle really didn't occur by my definition which would require breaking the laws that govern the universe.

We can't even make a case that this invalidates the idea of God because we have no proof that God is overtly involved.  How can it be said that God created a poor universe and occasionally has to step in and right the ship when God hasn't lifted a finger in 16 billion years and everything is running smoothly?  I'm sure there are equally crazy analogies but I hope you get the point I'm making.  God doesn't do miracles because he doesn't need to, everything is going according to plan.  Because we have no idea what the plan is or how it works we may think it's miraculous when it's not.  Also, just to head off any misconceptions, this is just imagery and not ID innuendo.

Arden makes a good point.  Who knows what happened 3000 years ago and what the people saw that they described as the sun standing still.  It is pointless to assess this scientifically because it's exactly like people at the scene of an accident and we know scientifically that every one there saw something but in most cases the don't agree on what they saw.  Do we now fault God for creating a universe in which observation is imperfect?  No, let's look at ourselves and be aware of our limitations and leave God out of it.

In the end it's still the same result; miracles are horrible measures for the evaluation of theism.

  
Amadan



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,18:11   

As I read it, that puts you in the agnostic camp, at least as far as the phenomenon of miracles is concerned. If I can presume to summarise your position, you maintain that as long as a rational explanation is at least conceivable, there is no reason to impute supernatural intervention. Hence, miracles (so called) are not evidence for theism, because rational explanations are (usually) available.

Which leads me back to a point I made earlier: revealed religions have a strong tendency to invoke miracles in their scriptures. I'm no expert, but my understanding of the Abrahamic religions, of Zoroastrianism, of various forms of animism, European paganism and mystery religions, is that they all make counterfactual claims involving resurrection from the dead, intervention in the weather, striking the bad guys dead, or the likes. All attribute these to supernatural forces, be they Odin, or the god of your choice acting through the prophet of his choice.

The message of these are all the same: my sky-daddy is bigger than the other bloke's sky-daddy. So the thesis of this thread has missed half the point: miracles (so-called) are not 'arguments' for theism, they are the strongest  'evidence' they can claim.

This is why ID chimes with the faithful: it expresses incredulity in terms of probability. That it does so in a way that provokes real mathematicians and scientists to giggles is irrelevant. Its purpose is to present reality as a miracle.

--------------
"People are always looking for natural selection to generate random mutations" - Densye  4-4-2011
JoeG BTW dumbass- some variations help ensure reproductive fitness so they cannot be random wrt it.

   
jhbbunch



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 02 2008,23:18   

Theists claim that the orderliness of the natural world is proof that God exists. And when the natural world is not orderly (ie: as in a miracle)  that is proof of God also. They have you coming and going.

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2008,07:42   

Quote (skeptic @ Mar. 02 2008,18:37)
A miracle is whatever the person describing it perceives it to be and they perceive it in that way for their own reasons.

Huh?  It's a miracle if the person perceives it as such?
Quote
We can't even make a case that this invalidates the idea of God because we have no proof that God is overtly involved.  How can it be said that God created a poor universe and occasionally has to step in and right the ship when God hasn't lifted a finger in 16 billion years and everything is running smoothly?  I'm sure there are equally crazy analogies but I hope you get the point I'm making.  God doesn't do miracles because he doesn't need to, everything is going according to plan.

And that's the point.  Miracles would be an argument against god because god shouldn't need them.
Quote
Arden makes a good point.  Who knows what happened 3000 years ago and what the people saw that they described as the sun standing still.  It is pointless to assess this scientifically because it's exactly like people at the scene of an accident and we know scientifically that every one there saw something but in most cases the don't agree on what they saw.  Do we now fault God for creating a universe in which observation is imperfect?  No, let's look at ourselves and be aware of our limitations and leave God out of it.

No one is faulting god for anything.  What we are saying is that if it did happen, then it violated the laws of the universe and that makes for a god that can't get it right the first time.
Quote
In the end it's still the same result; miracles are horrible measures for the evaluation of theism.

Exactly, because they make for a god that is less than perfect, etc.  The problem for you is that most of your theistic brethren believe in miracles and even find that miracles are proof of god.

  
J-Dog



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2008,09:12   

Miracle?  I'll give you an effin miracle...

It's an effin miracle that so many people have believed in Big Sky JuJu for so damn long, with what is really no reason to at all.

Or to put in more Churchillian terms:

Never have so many believed so much with so little reason.

--------------
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
skeptic



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 08 2008,11:11   

GCT, I think you have completely missed my point.

  
GCT



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 09 2008,14:50   

No, I got your point, it's just not very good.  You want to say that we can't know if miracles happen or not so we can't say anything about god.  You simultaneously want to say that you don't think miracles occur because god doesn't need them, all while hedging your bets that they might occur or that they are somehow in the eye of the beholder.

  
dheddle



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 10 2008,11:19   

I must say I truly didn’t understand this thread. How can miracles be a problem for God? By definition, if he exists he is supernatural and thus can act supernaturally. On what basis can one rationally argue that they (miracles) are some sort of admission of defeat? The only basis I see is to declare them to be unnecessary for any god worthy of the title, and then, ipso facto, their mere postulation demonstrates god’s ineptitude.

It seems rather a stacked deck, and a silly one at that. As any theist must, I assume that God supernaturally manipulated space-time to create the universe. If you don’t believe that, then I don’t know what would make you a theist—instead, at best, you’d be worshipping an advanced though thoroughly natural creature.

To me, once I accept that God can create the whole friggin’ universe (perhaps by setting the big bang in motion, or some precursor thereof), the classic miracles (circumventing the natural laws to impregnate a virgin, turn water to wine, or play games with time for Joshua’s military advantage) seem like child’s play. And the purpose was to further his plan of redemption—for which he is under no obligation to carry out at all let alone to be required to use only secondary (natural) means.
That said, I suspect you guys are sensing some deeper theological problem with miracles, one which, blissfully, I am too shallow to grasp.

And, by the way, JDog is absolutely correct when he wrote:
 
Quote
It's an effin miracle that so many people have believed in Big Sky JuJu for so damn long, with what is really no reason to at all.

As any good Calvinist knows, it is indeed a miracle that anyone believes.

--------------
Mysticism is a rational enterprise. Religion is not. The mystic has recognized something about the nature of consciousness prior to thought, and this recognition is susceptible to rational discussion. The mystic has reason for what he believes, and these reasons are empirical. --Sam Harris

   
Richardthughes



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 10 2008,12:11   

Hi Dave. My thought was the message wasn't strong enough, so they had to sweeten the deal with a bit of purported magic. Think of a divinely crafted message. Then look at the bible. The same? Nope - no tears, no fundamental resonance with me, just a book, written by man.

--------------
"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
bystander



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 11 2008,02:48   

I agree with Heddle on this. I was basically taught to think of it as a play. God not only created the universe, wrote the history of the universe and wrote himself a part in the story of the universe. So the perfect universe and story of the universe requires these miracles not because the plan was imperfect but they were a neccessary part of the plan.

Of course as I am an atheist, I will note that there is a relationship with miracles. The greatness of the miracle is in direct proportion with how many years they occured before the present and indirectly proportional to the number of witnesses.

  
hereoisreal



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(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 18 2008,23:31   

Quote (bystander @ Mar. 11 2008,02:48)
Of course as I am an atheist, I will note that there is a relationship with miracles. The greatness of the miracle is in direct proportion with how many years they occured before the present and indirectly proportional to the number of witnesses.

Bystander, IMO, a bystander is a witness unless his back is turned.

Rth 4:11  And all the people that [were] in the gate, and the elders, said,
[We are] witnesses. The LORD make the woman that is come into thine
house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel:
and do thou worthily in Ephratah, and be famous in Bethlehem:

Mic 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, [though] thou be little among the thousands
of Judah, [yet] out of thee shall he come forth unto me [that is] to be ruler in Israel;
whose goings forth [have been] from of old, from everlasting.

The book of Ruth, by chance, was written about 1,322 BC.  Micah in 750 BC.

Zero

--------------
360  miracles and more at:
http://www.hereoisreal.com/....eal.com

Great news. God’s wife is pregnant! (Rev. 12:5)

It's not over till the fat lady sings! (Isa. 54:1 & Zec 9:9)

   
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