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Asking hard questions of Atheists.

  1. calynbana profile image87
    calynbanaposted 4 years ago

    I have been noticing that Theists are usually stuck with the burdan of proof when it comes to their beliefs.

    This thread is about asking Atheists what they believe respectfully. It is for theists to get a better understanding of the views of Atheists. Remember the questions being asked are from theists to atheists. There is a twin thread where atheists can ask theists questions.

    I am not trying to create an us against them mentality which is why there are twin threads. I am trying to avoid bickering and pointless attacks.

    Theists remember that God loves everybody on these threads, try to reflect that love.

    Atheists remember that everyone on this thread is seeking truth, just like you. Please respect their search of truth.

    I will not delete any comments, or report any comments. However if you are beng disrespectful and trolling you will be ignored. Try to contribute to intellectual discussion with respectful and insightful views.

    Have fun!

    1. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Theists are the ones "stuck with the burden of proof," because they are the ones making the assertions.

      That is how it works.

      A-theists simply do not believe in a god. There are no beliefs involved.

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        Motown2Chitownposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        THIS is the best lesson I've learned about living harmoniously with people who do not believe.  If there is a gap as wide as the one between belief and non belief, it cannot be closed by any manner of discussion.  Therefore, it's best left alone to avoid the conflict.

        If I'm going to talk to Mark these days, I leave alone anything having to do with religion and/or belief in God, just like I learned to do with (from) Ernest.

        smile  Hiya, Mark.

        1. Mark Knowles profile image60
          Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Hey.

          big_smile

          1. luvpassion profile image60
            luvpassionposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Hi Mr. Knowles

            big_smile

        2. Chris Neal profile image83
          Chris Nealposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Probably a good idea. I almost wish I'd read some of the posts from Ernest.

      2. calynbana profile image87
        calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        No atheists have an even greater burden of truth. It is much harder to say something does not exist than to say that it does. Look at the whole loch ness case.

        The existance of God can logically explain the beginning of the Universe. if you like I can lay out the logical syllogism.

        How does the belief that God does not exist logically respond to the beginning of the Universe?

        1. 0
          jomineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          You understand what you are stating is a logical fallacy, begging the question?
          Again

          Your premise is everything need a beginning
          and conclusion Hence god created everything
          Is not a valid argument, because
          you exclude god from your premise without any valid stated reason.
          your premise is false
          your conclusion doesn't follow your premise.

          1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
            Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            In a nutshell, "Well, then, who created God?"

            1. 0
              jomineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Yes.
              Saying universe is created by god for sure, but I don't know who created god is nonsense, or wishful thinking, the hope of the theist.

              1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
                Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                But that assumes that God, if He exists, is bound by the laws of the universe as we understand them. But He's not bound by those laws: he's omnipotent, omnicient, and omnibenevolent: it says so right on the label.

                Belief in God allows for the existence of something passing our understanding and transcending our universe. Logical? Nope. Not a bit. But I still like it and take comfort in it.

                Who created God? I dunno. Doesn't really matter to me.

                But that doesn't mean we should stop trying to figure out the universe we live in: it's a fascinating place, and I think God (assuming that He exists outside of my mind) would want us to try and figure it out.

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                  jomineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I quite agree with what you said in the replies to others Jeff, but here I've some difference.
                  Past is an assumption, we cannot go back to the past or cannot reenact the past to prove it. We can only explain the past, so as it is us who do the explanation and not god, we are bound to do it logically and rationally.
                  Our only truth and reality is the present, and in the present we have matter and space and no human being has ever seen something comes out of nothing or something becomes nothing. What we call time is just the change of location of objects. So if we travel "through past" we will just see objects changing location but never will we reach a time when everything becomes nothing. So there is no creation.
                  Even if we assume creation by god we have to assume god existed before creation. So the matter that make up god and the space that give shape to him was always there. So matter and space are eternal and hence not created.
                  In my reply which you commented I showed why god is a logical contradiction.

                  1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
                    Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    "So the matter that make up god and the space that give shape to him was always there."
                    Again, you're assuming that God (whatever God is) is made of matter and takes up space. If God created the universe we live in, then God created matter and space. If he did that, how could he be made of one, and occupy the other?

                    I know it's not rational; we've agreed on that. And that's part of the problem when discussing God: God transcends the laws of physics as we understand them. God need not be made of matter; God need not take up space.
                    This raises a couple questions, of course: "What's God made of, then, and where is He?" My answer? Heck, I sure don't know.

        2. janesix profile image59
          janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          The existance of god can not logically explain the beginning of the universe.

          1. calynbana profile image87
            calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Consider this syllogism.

            1) Everything that begins to exist has a cause.

            2) The Universe began to exist.

            3) Therefore the Universe had a cause.

            1. calynbana profile image87
              calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              1) The fine- tuning of the Universe is due to physical necessity, chance or design.

              2) It is not due to physical necessity or chance.

              3) Therefore, it is due to design.

              If you would like me to defend the premises I will do so on the Asking Hard Questions of Theists thread.

            2. Randy Godwin profile image95
              Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Where do you find the facts proving point 1? 


                                                               http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

              1. calynbana profile image87
                calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Come over to the other thread, I will respond there. This is for asking Atheists questions.

                Do you believe the Universe is fine tuned?

                1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                  Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Is it that difficult to post a link to your facts?  If so, no thanks to your offer.

                                                                   http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

                  1. calynbana profile image87
                    calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    My facts come from numerous books, not websites. Therefore linking you to them would be quite difficult...I can tell you my favorite of the books if you like?

                    The reason I am keeping these threads separate is to avoid unfriendly banter as found in some other threads. I will stick to this.

                    So what are you beliefs about the beginning of the Universe Mr. Godwin?

            3. Jesus was a hippy profile image61
              Jesus was a hippyposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I don't think anyone has ever witnessed or recorded a single item ever beginning to exist.

              Don't the laws of physics say that matter/energy is interchangeable but cannot be created or destroyed?

              Wouldn't it follow that matter/energy must be eternal?

              So where is the beginning?

              1. calynbana profile image87
                calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                What are your feelings on the beginning or lack of beginning of the Universe. I need to clarify what you are asking here.

                1. Jesus was a hippy profile image61
                  Jesus was a hippyposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I am not asking anything. I am pointing out the fallacies in your claim.

                  1. calynbana profile image87
                    calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Did your physical body begin to exist?

        3. Ron Montgomery profile image60
          Ron Montgomeryposted 4 years ago in reply to this



          yikes

        4. janesix profile image59
          janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Your axioms have to be facts in order for your syllogism to be logical. You have presented no actual facts.

          That there was a beginning to the universe is not an established fact.

          1. calynbana profile image87
            calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Other thread.

            1. calynbana profile image87
              calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Remember this is for understanding the beliefs of atheists. I am a theist and my argument supports theism. I cannot defend it here.

              1. janesix profile image59
                janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                I am arguing based on where you presented your argument, which is here in this thread. I am a theist as well. God will never be explained logically, no matter how hard you try.

                1. calynbana profile image87
                  calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I am not trying to explain God logically, I am trying to understand the beginning of the Universe via logical arguements from both theists and athiests. I provided the arguement to get the atheist thread going. I will answer to it on the other thread where I posted the same argument and you responded to the same argument.

        5. Mark Knowles profile image60
          Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          So - you think the burden of proof is on those who do not make the assertion?

          This would be why your beliefs cause so many wars.

          The whole what ness case? If u cain't disprove it the Loch NEss Monster is real?

          Sorry you do not understand the word "logically"

          Ifn u meen goddunnit - well OK then. This is why the FSM despises you.

          1. calynbana profile image87
            calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I think if you are going to make a claim (God does not exist) and attack people for believing in this God but not be able to answer the questions you ask of the theists yourself then I think there is an issue. What I have gotten from reading the threads the last couple days was that Christians get stuck trying to defend themselves, while Atheists do not have ANY answers to the same questions they are ridiculing the Christians for not answering to their satisfaction.

            What is more ridiculous, having plausible answers to questions and believing in these answers or having no answers to questions and then ridiculing those who pose answers?

            If you want to make extraordinary claims about there being no cause to the Universe, or the Universe existing for infitinity then  you need to prove your claims. These are the claims I have found the atheists on this page and the other making. These are the claims you are responsible for proving. Otherwise you are not in a place to be able to ridicule those who can provide some proof for their beliefs.

            1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
              Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              "I think if you are going to make a claim (God does not exist) "
              That's not the claim that atheists make.

              The real claim is this: The existence of God is unproven. (This is a true statement, btw.)

              The atheist decides not to believe in the existence of an entity whose existence is unproven.

              The theist decides to believe in the unproven entity, on faith.

              The arguments start when the atheist starts making fun of the theist for believing in something that is unproven, or the theist mistakes his faith for knowledge and starts making fun of the atheist for not accepting the 'truth.'

              I believe in God. Not because someone proved that God exists, but because it feels right to me. This is not logical--it's a gut feeling. I take it on faith.  And--this is the important bit--I know that my faith is not the same thing as knowledge. I don't know that God exists. I believe that God exists (maybe because I want God to exist?), but that doesn't mean that God does exist.

              I guess I'm more of an agnostic theist: I believe in God, but not with certainty.

              1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Thanks Jeff!  I can accept this with no problem.  Too bad others do not have your courage and honesty.  smile

                                                          http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

              2. jdflom profile image83
                jdflomposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                That was really well said, Jeff. I have a very similar mindset, just on the other side of the coin, as my gut feeling is that there isn't a god.

          2. 0
            Motown2Chitownposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Mark, what's the FSM? smile

            1. Randy Godwin profile image95
              Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              He is referring to the Flying Spaghetti Monster.  MC.  A more kindly and logical god than that of the christians.  smile


                                                 http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

              1. calynbana profile image87
                calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Mr. Godwin, I have to say you are definitely guilty of a similar mindset you accuse the theists of.

                Tell me, what is your belief system based upon?

                1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                  Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I really cannot tell you how much I appreciate your analysis of my mindset, Mr. Cal.  You should have told me earlier you were a psychologist too.  ORU?   



                  I believe in reality. 

                                                         http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

                  1. calynbana profile image87
                    calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    You are being very vague, and not actually saying what you believe. You believe in reality? That is great! I do too! We have some common ground to stand on. Now what do you believe?

                    (Btw not mr.)

                    Not a psychologist no, as I told you before an educator. I spend a lot of time analyzing childish behaviour. Honestly when you answer sarcastically and with personal attacks I am getting this, "I do not have the answers you are looking for so I am going to try my best to put you down and try to make myself look better in comparison"

                    I keep asking you the same questions because I want you to prove me wrong. Prove to me that you have some ground to stand on with your belief in atheism.

              2. 0
                Motown2Chitownposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Ah...thank you.  I feel enlightened now.  smile

                1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                  Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Of course you do.  No adoration or sacrifices are required to believe in him.  This means no virgins, burnt livestock, long boring completely false sermons, or lack of intelligence, is necessary to be an admirer.cool 


                  Ramen                                       http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

                  1. Jesus was a hippy profile image61
                    Jesus was a hippyposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    All praise his noodly appendage

                  2. calynbana profile image87
                    calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Randy do you believe yourself to be an intelligent person?

                  3. Ron Montgomery profile image60
                    Ron Montgomeryposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Actually, the virgin thing is being discussed by the high council...

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      Sooner28posted 4 years ago in reply to this

      When a person begins to learn logic, one of the first elements he encounters is this burden or poof business.  What is it?  Why is it important?

      Burden of proof simply means that whoever makes the positive claim has the burden to defend it.  For example, if I am a prosecutor, and I claim that Joe Blow murdered Sassy Kathy, the onus is upon ME to prove he did that.  The defense does not have to disprove my claim.  All they must do is poke holes and show I have not proven it, or show there is "reasonable doubt" that Joe Blow killed Sassy Kathy.

      This is similar to the way theism is.  The theist asserts that God exists, and that a supernatural world exists.  The theist must provide evidence, or there is no good reason to believe.   There could be "reasonable doubt."

      Most atheist arguments are simply a response to certain aspects of God.  If God exists, why do natural disasters occur?  Or is the concept of God coherent?  If the theist fails to establish that God exists, they lose.

      They lose because a tie goes to the atheist.  If a theist asserts God exists, and there is no argument that can show he/she/it does, then, even if agnosticism is the most reasonable position, theism loses.  All talk of divine intervention, revelation, and the like fall by the waste side.

      Of course, there is always blind faith.  If there is no argument that establishes God exists, but a person has a deep intuitive feeling God may exist, then Kierkegaard's famous leap of faith comes into play.  But that isn't a logical argument for God's existence.  It's just a belief.

      1. calynbana profile image87
        calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Yes I believe i should not have used the term Burdan of Proof. I worded that poorly. I was only saying that maybe atheists should say what they actually do believe instead of just rejecting what anybody else believes and not providing answers to the Big questions other faith systems can answer

        1. 0
          Sooner28posted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Yes.  That's a good point.  The particular atheist must the defend whatever he believes, and answer objections.

      2. Jeff Berndt profile image90
        Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        " If there is no argument that establishes God exists, but a person has a deep intuitive feeling God may exist, then Kierkegaard's famous leap of faith comes into play.  But that isn't a logical argument for God's existence.  It's just a belief."

        Yes, this^.

    3. twosheds1 profile image59
      twosheds1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

      I believe in peace, love and rock & roll. Beyond that, not much. The list of things I don't believe in really is as infinite as your imagination. I don't believe in fairies, unicorns, nymphs, satyrs, sprites, pixies, dragons, gods, demons, devils, ghosts, ad infinitum. But whether I believe in something is immaterial. What really matters is the truth. For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.

    4. Jeff Berndt profile image90
      Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      "I have been noticing that Theists are usually stuck with the burdan of proof when it comes to their beliefs."

      Well, that's because it's theists who are making assertions that they know something. If you make a claim, you have to be able to prove the claim (with evidence and stuff) if you want to convince a skeptic.

      An atheist doesn't make any positive or negative claim; rather, they remain unconvinced of the existence of a God based on the evidence available to us.

      Also, all of the logical arguments that support the existence of a God ultimately fail.

      Everything has to have a cause. Okay, so what caused God? And what caused the thing that caused God? And so on, etc. ad naus.

      Sooner or later, the theist has to fall back on "it's turtles all the way down," which is both lazy and intellectually dishonest.

      I wish theists could stop pretending that our faith is logical: it isn't. That doesn't mean we're wrong to believe in God, nor does it mean God doesn't exist. But what it does mean is that there is no proof of God's existence, and atheists have no burden of proof. We're the ones trying to convince them of the existence of something.

      They're not trying to convince us of the non-existence of anything; rather, they're pointing out that our believe in an unproven entity is not logical. And they're right.

      1. Mark Knowles profile image60
        Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        It certainly makes a nice change to hear this instead of being attacked for irrationally not believing in something that is logically impossible.

        And of course - not being able to prove it does not exist.

        But - this means less fights and ill will. Are you sure that is what Jesus wanted? lol

        1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
          Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Well, most people (theists and atheists alike) have this burning desire to be right all the time, and to make everyone else admit that they're right.

          If more of us were willing to admit that we're not sure about stuff, there'd be a lot more harmony in the world.

          I think there's a God. But we can't quantify his existence or measure his influence on the universe in any way (at least not in any consistent,  meaningful way that we can understand--not yet). I think that this is probably the way God wanted it (assuming that I'm right about His existence).

          I don't think He meant for us to be fighting about it.

          1. Mark Knowles profile image60
            Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            But this is not the biblical god - right? This is some sort of god that takes no interest in human affairs.

            I can sort of understand a belief like this, but - Why would you think you know the intentions of something that by your own admission - you think we cannot quantify?

            Admittedly - the intentions you apply to this thing you think exists are far less extreme than most theists' - yet you think you know what it wants.

            Why?

            This is what causes the conflicts. The belief that you think you know what this thing wants. Not the initial belief.

            1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
              Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Well, I really don't know. I suppose it's possible that God could be a petty vengeful being that gets His rocks off by messing with His creations and smiting them when they step out of line, but I doubt it.

              I doubt it because I doubt that a being powerful enough to create the universe and everything in it would feel a need for the wee critters in the universe even to acknowledge His existence, let alone do what He tells them to do.

              Plus, I think if God had instructions for us, he'd have made them rather more clear (him being all omnipotent and everything).

              I think God wanted his existence to be unquantifiable and unprovable precisely because His existence is unquantifiable and unprovable. I mean, if I buy that an omnicient and omnipotent being exists, then I have to assume that His desires are going to lay the groundwork for the universe, right? And since we haven't been able to prove God's existence, it's because that's the way God wants it (assuming my assumptions are correct, that is).

              Though, by the same logic, I suppose that since we do fight over God and what He wants, then that also has to be the way God wanted it. Unless we further assume that we have free will for some reason: that God (for reasons of His own) doesn't make us do what he wants, and lets us decide for ourselves how to behave.

              Heck, I don't know.

              I do know that it sure would be great if we'd all try to be nice to each other for a change....

              1. Mark Knowles profile image60
                Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                I agree with your last statement,but there is a far, far simpler alternative than the scenario you are proposing. big_smile

                Having said that - I was more asking this as a personal question - which you neatly avoided by the way. Perhaps it was the way I worded the question, so I will try again.

                You apparently believe that there is an "unquantifiable and unprovable" entity that created the Universe.

                Given that it is "unquantifiable and unprovable" - what makes you think you know what it wants? Why would it not want us to fight to the death to see who is the strongest for example - as opposed to being "nice" to each other?

                In fact - given the way your god set nature to work, the former seems far more likely than the latter.

                1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
                  Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  "You apparently believe that there is an "unquantifiable and unprovable" entity that created the Universe."
                  I'm with you so far.

                  "Given that it is "unquantifiable and unprovable" - what makes you think you know what it wants?"
                  Oh! I don't. Not for sure. I know what I'd want if I were the Creator of the Universe, and that's the best I can do for guessing at what God would want (assuming He wants anything from us at all).
                  Arrogant? Yep. Just as arrogant as the people who claim God wants us to be mean to certain people, in fact.

                  But that's why I don't try to force everyone to be nice to each other, or try to outlaw mean people, or carry signs that say "God Hates Jerks."

                  I think God, if He wants anything from us, probably wants us to be nice to each other (not sure why, but probably because it's a lot more comforting that the idea that God wants us to fight to the death for His amusement). But I'm not going to be mean to people who disagree with me.

                  1. Mark Knowles profile image60
                    Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    So basically it makes you feel better to think you know what it wants?

                    Do you see how dangerous this way of thinking is? Once you think you know what it wants - and history bears me out here - it is not much of a stretch to think that you ought to be making other people do what it wants.

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          Motown2Chitownposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          It's true, Mark.  smile  Not all of us demonize non believers - or try to convert them.  Jeff and I think a great deal alike.  And, Jeff, you say it quite well!

      2. kerryg profile image87
        kerrygposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        A+ post, Jeff.

      3. calynbana profile image87
        calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        You misunderstood the premise. It is not everything that exists must have a cause, it is everything that began to exist must have a cause.

        Also this is not about fighting this is about asking Atheists what they do believe. There is another thread for them to ask Theists what they believe.

        Some of these threads have become impossible for people to converse on because of back and forth arguing between different groups. I wanted to try and break up the arguments and still be able to understand what the different people involved believed. That is all the thread is for.

        1. janesix profile image59
          janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Lol... Thats what happens when you try to control people. Are you getting frustrated that thats not working for you?

          1. calynbana profile image87
            calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            No I think that this thread is working rather well, mind you the twin seems to be more positive. I am finding a lot of trolling on this thread, also a lot of insults.

            I am not trying to control people, I am trying to limit the trolling and arguments that happen in most religious topic threads. That's all. Even with attempting to avoid these confrontations (I just want respectful questions and answers from both sides, somehow that seems to be really hard on this thread, it is working on the theist thread)

            Not frustrated really, on a little disappointed in a couple of people here. I really expected some intellectual discussion on this thread. I am still hoping it will happen.

        2. Jeff Berndt profile image90
          Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Okay, does everything that exists have to begin existing at some point?

          1. calynbana profile image87
            calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I do not believe so, I do not believe the initial cause could have began existing to avoid an infinite regress. This is just my belief. I think I am going to start prefacing everything I say with "this is just my belief" maybe it will avoid some argument...

            1. 0
              jomineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              "infinite regress", do you even understand that nonsense?

              1. calynbana profile image87
                calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Yes which is why I used the term.  Do you understand what it means? Also it is not nonsense it is quite the opposite.

                1. 0
                  jomineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I don't understand what it means.
                  Infinite is an adjective(hence denote an object) and regress is a verb(denote motion).
                  So if I say large eat or triangular laugh, will it make any sense to you?

                  1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
                    Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    "Large eat:" a meal that leaves you with a feeling of being overly full.
                    "Triangular laugh:" a joke shared by three people.

                    smile

            2. Jeff Berndt profile image90
              Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              "I do not believe the initial cause could have began existing to avoid an infinite regress."

              So do you recognize that this is illogical? (Not that it's bad, just that it's illogical.)

              1. calynbana profile image87
                calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                What part is illogical? I recognize that everything needing a cause is illogical. But everything that begins to exist does need a cause, based off of what is observable in our natural world. The only thing I do not believe would need a cause would be something eternal. The name given to this eternal cause is often God.

                1. Jeff Berndt profile image90
                  Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  In other words, "It's turtles all the way down."

    5. Panacea-VVD profile image61
      Panacea-VVDposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      First let me say that I think this is a great thread, a worthy topic, and a well-phrased question put to the community.
      The burden of proof is indeed at the heart of the issue. The reason for this is that anyone, anywhere, and at any time, can make a claim. In order not to waste our time and energy investigating infinite claims, we have to weed out the ones that are devoid of merit, and only consider the ones that might yield useful results. As such, the person making the claim has to provide some evidence of its merit. That is not to say that they must prove the theory credible - the requirement is less demanding than that - they must only show evidence of some indication that might logically lead to their conclusion upon investigation. This brings us full circle to the initial question of why atheists refuse to believe in God: what evidence indicates that proper research and exploration might prove the existence of God? Atheists contend that in the search for truth, while faith may have been big in the dark ages, it has no place in an enlightened scientific age. Similarly, the existence of the world and of life falls short of the mark, because using that fact as evidence of God is a textbook example of the logical error known as "animistic fallacy" (i.e. the incorrect assumption that the existence of something means that it was intentionally brought about). Of course, if you don't subscribe to logic, then it's pointless having this argument, or any other for that matter! One theory, for which there is an abundance of evidence, is that people NEED to believe in God. Psychologically, the belief itself acts as a support system and a coping mechanism, albeit one that atheists often view as an impediment to our collective progress and the intellectual evolution of the human race.

  2. calynbana profile image87
    calynbanaposted 4 years ago

    Let me start this off which a question that bothers me.

    Atheists do you have beliefs about the beginning of the Universe?

    1. Mark Knowles profile image60
      Mark Knowlesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      There was a beginning?

      1. calynbana profile image87
        calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Do you believe there was?

    2. twosheds1 profile image59
      twosheds1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Again, beliefs are unimportant. How it really happened is. Lawrence Krauss, in his new book "A Universe From Nothing," explains how the universe came into being from nothing. He takes a whole book to explain it, so it's hard to summarize it here. Basically, "nothing" is unstable, so "something" has to exist. Time started at the Big Bang, so it's not like sapce was just sitting there before it, waiting for something to happen, and then it happened. There was no "before."

      At least that's how I understood it. This isn't pulled from his nethers, either. He provides evidence to support his assertions.

      1. calynbana profile image87
        calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I would like to read that book..I am a little skeptical but quite curious. I am confused as how nothing can be anything including unstable but I will give it  a shot.

        1. twosheds1 profile image59
          twosheds1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

          I don't claim to fully understand it. A lot of it went over my head, but I stuck with it. Hawking's latest book "The Grand Design" offers a similar explanation.

    3. Jeff Berndt profile image90
      Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Atheists don't have beliefs about the beginning of the universe; they have theories, some better supported by evidence and math than others. When one theory is disproven, it gets abandoned in favor of a more robust theory. Atheists aren't afraid to say "I don't know."

      Most theists, on the other hand, think they know when they merely believe, and under the misapprehansion that they know how the universe began, etc, tend to feel smugly superior to atheists, who don't know, and what's more, know that they don't know.

      Of course, there are a lot of atheists who mistake the fact that they aren't convinced of God's existence for evidence that there is no God, and they feel smugly superior to those who do believe in something that's obviously (to the lazy atheist) untrue.

      1. calynbana profile image87
        calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I agree with your posts Jeff, but many of the atheists I wanted to lure over to this thread are the ones who are attacking the theists on other threads for "unreasonably" holding to their beliefs. While at the same time providing no reasons why they think the beliefs are unreasonable, alternative answers they think are reasonable or even being willing to say I don't know.

        These are the atheists I wanted to ask questions of, because it seems to me they have a smug belief in themselves. I want to understand why people who claim to be rational thinkers think this approach is reasonable. Am I making sense?

        1. BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image83
          BLACKANDGOLDJACKposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          You make perfect sense.

          The village atheists make nonsense.

        2. Jeff Berndt profile image90
          Jeff Berndtposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          many of the atheists I wanted to lure over to this thread are the ones who are attacking the theists on other threads for "unreasonably" holding to their beliefs.
          Well, it's not 'reasonable' to believe in a God. It feels right to me, but not because of any rational reason.

          I can tell you why faith is unreasonable: there is no evidence of God's existence. He cannot be proven through experimentation, observation, or mathematical proof. Can't be done. Any assertion about God's existence or nature is pure speculation (scripture notwithstanding).

          In a discussion about the origins of the universe, there's a few possible conclusions. "God dunnit," "I dunno," or "I'm not sure, but here's a pretty good theory, with math and physics to back it up." But my favorite answer is something like this: "I think God did it, and I'm pretty sure that this theory is how He did it, based on this math and this physics."

          But I don't know.

  3. peeples profile image89
    peeplesposted 4 years ago

    I Will not pretend to know how we were created. To say I know would be equal to saying I believed in God. What I do know is that Christians believe there is a creator who refuses to take care of all of his children and the world he created and that is simply not something/ someone I can believe in. I would rather have no god than to believe we have one that doesn't care.

    1. calynbana profile image87
      calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Okay I can see why you feel that way. I wonder though, do you have any beliefs other than the rejection of God?

      1. peeples profile image89
        peeplesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I believe in doing good whenever I can because it is the right thing to do, not because a book told me to. I believe in creating our own hell or heaven on earth. Life is what we get and we can turn it into a wonderful or horrible thing. I just believe in living life the best we can with who we have in it. I see no need in believing in anything really outside our ourselves.

        1. calynbana profile image87
          calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Makes sense, how do you decide what is the right thing to do?

          1. Randy Godwin profile image95
            Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Oh, here you are again!  lol  You seem to run off every time I ask you your age and your credentials for your opinions here.  Ready to answer now?  tongue

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            1. calynbana profile image87
              calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I responded above did you get it? And I am not running off do not try to discredit me. If my assumption is wrong I apologize but that is what this looks like. I work. I answered as much as I could during my lunch but is simply not possible for me to be on the computer often enough to keep up. I will answer as soon as I possibly can, but weekdays I will be offline more than on. I am sorry if this is not ideal for our conversation but it is the best I can do.

              1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Never mind.  I received the answer I wanted.  You've asked me questions, but apparently do not feel I am worthy of the same.  Goodbye, Missy!  I have no respect for you or your little threads.  You know what you can do with them and your old book of goat herder myths.  Deal with your own ilk, you are all the same!  lol

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                1. DoubleScorpion profile image87
                  DoubleScorpionposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Hey Randy, here is something I thought you might like and enjoy sharing with "others" LOL...

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dK3O6KYP … re=related

                  1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                    Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Thanks, DS!  Very interesting, but proof means nothing to creationists and believers.  Besides, it isn't in the bible!  lol


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            2. BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image83
              BLACKANDGOLDJACKposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              How old are you and what are your credentials?

              Do you have a PhD in Bible Studies from Regents University like your buddy Doctor Double Scorpion says he has? Only thing I can't figure out is why he doesn't know it's Regent and not Regents.

              1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                I am 61 years old, BJ.  I've dealt with narrow minded believers most of my life.  One cannot sling a cat around here without hitting a Baptist up side the head.  Most of them are so ignorant they think god himself personally wrote the bible and were indoctrinated into the church at an early age, losing what sense of real awareness they were born with long before they ever had a chance to use it.  What's your excuse?  Were you one of them too?  I would bet on it!  lol


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                1. calynbana profile image87
                  calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Randy I challenge you to reread every post you responded to and your response. Really think about what you know of the people you were speaking to. Then come back and see if bringing up narrow minded baptists is even relevant to the thread.

                  I have tried to talk to you about scientific theories, I have tried to use logic, I have tried to be friendly and I have tried to rebuke you.

                  More theists have been answering respectfully and thoughtfully than atheists. There are some atheists who did respond in a way that contributed to the conversation. You were not one of them.

                  Your responses have been ignorant and narrow minded. Exactly the attributes you accuse theists of having.

                  You can say you don't believe in God, I can see that you need more solid evidence than what some other people have.

                  However I do not know if you have seriously considered the evidence for a God, and the evidence that there is no God.

                  Think about it. What I have noticed on this thread so far is that atheists do not believe in God because they cannot experience Him with any of their senses. This is a valid point.

                  Can you experience the thoughts or feelings of yourself or others with any of your senses?

                  There are more scientists who are in favor of the Universe having a beginning. The other option (that it did not and has existed for infinity does not fall in line with what science can observe and seems impossible)

                  If the Universe had a beginning, then the cause of this beginning must be outside of time and space. Something that did not have a cause as it existed before time.

                  The way the Universe, the earth and all life forms interact makes it hard to believe it was chance. I cannot remember the exact number but it was something along the lines of 1 out of 10 to the power of 500 was the chance that our earth could have life on it. This is for a single celled organism. Not even the complex life that our earth hosts.

                  The chances of complex life existing by chance is very hard to believe, especially when you add orphan genes to the mix.

                  The other option that many people believe is that the world was fine tuned by whatever caused the beginning of the Universe. I believe this makes sense. You don't and that is fine.

                  I have a little something to add about historicity and the Bible but I will not mention it right now to avoid sarcastic ad hominems.

                  I have outlined why I believe in a Designer of some sorts. I have given you my reasons. They may not sound convincing to you and that is fine, but can you see how they may be convincing to some people?

                  It is not always a narrow minded belief based entirely on one book (or more accurately 66 historical documents). It is often a well thought out belief system based on things outside of religion.

                  In my becoming Christian reading the Bible was the last step. I was more worried about the questions science cannot answer. I was more worried about what I thought made sense. (Mind you it was what I thought made sense I am not saying it is the only thing that makes sense)

                  I have been reading the Bible now and comparing it to other documents and ideas as well as belief systems.

                  I was not an indoctrinated Baptist. I was an atheist until last year. My family members are all atheists.

                  Yet you still approached me as if I was an irrational Baptist of your memories.

                  I think that you must have had a bad experience in a church with Baptists (Sorry for stating the obvious) and that you now paint all Christians with the same negative brush.

                  That is just as risky as being racist or ageist. It is extremely narrow minded to assume a group of people are all the same.

                  It would be like me saying all atheists are like Stalin.

                  It is illogical and simply emotional.

                  You are the one who is coming across as ignorant, which is surprising considering your age. There is no need to be so openly hostile to any group of people and it is really disheartening to see somebody be so hostile.

                  You are a 61 year old man who has read thousands of books. You should be able to communicate some tact and grace. Instead it is the same bullheaded insults that teenagers use that I keep seeing you throw at people.

                  I feel really weird saying this, but grow up.

                  Realize that people are individuals and are all different.

                  Just because you are older does not mean you are any wiser.

                  I am sorry to rant at you Randy but I find your approach and blatant discrimination sickening.

                  I can see no reason why atheists and theists cannot have pleasant conversation about what they believe and why without throwing insults around.

                  You seem to think it is necessary I guess that is another belief we differ on.

                  I really hope you will at least consider what I have said here.

                  1. Randy Godwin profile image95
                    Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Sorry Missy, you refused to answer my queries.  I feel the same about yours.  If the universe has a beginning, then so did your god.  FO! Your opinion of me is not worth discussing. You are probably a very young girl with very little experience with real life.  Your posts indicate as much.  I'd rather you not address me again and I'll do the same for you.

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          2. peeples profile image89
            peeplesposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            calynbana, I decide what is right with common sense. It doesn't take much thought to know bashing other's for what they believe is wrong (even if I don't believe it), or to donate our extra produce we grow to people who need it so we don't have to trash it. Life is just common sense. We should all use our brains a little more and depend on other's to tell us what is right a little less.

            1. calynbana profile image87
              calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I agree with you entirely.

  4. Browergal68 profile image60
    Browergal68posted 4 years ago via iphone

    Well I am a Baptist and God the Almighty saved me and turned my life that was bound straight for Hell, around and on the road to redemption when I was 35 yrs old. I am not a bible thumping freak by no means but I take one heck of an offense to someone putting my Lord and Savior down or attacking a fellow brother or sister in the belief. So either talk civil or back down.

    1. 0
      jomineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      GTH

      1. Browergal68 profile image60
        Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

        N.I.T.E. LOL... smile

    2. Randy Godwin profile image95
      Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Or what?  lol 

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      1. Browergal68 profile image60
        Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Honey I have read your nasty little vindictive posts. If I wasn't the Christian believer I am today I'd give you an ear full that would make even you blush with shame... ROFLMBO!!! big_smile

        1. Cagsil profile image83
          Cagsilposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          roll

        2. Randy Godwin profile image95
          Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Oh please stop, sweetie pie!  You're frightening me so bad! lol  I've been reared around some of the most ignorant Baptists the world has ever known down here in the deep south.  You'd get along well with them, I'm sure.  tongue

                                                     http://s1.hubimg.com/u/6186572.jpg

          1. Browergal68 profile image60
            Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Deep south? Well just where the heck do you think I come from Yankee?

            1. janesix profile image59
              janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Randy, the Yankee Doodle Dandy?

              1. Browergal68 profile image60
                Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                LOL... smile Good one!!!

                1. janesix profile image59
                  janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I was mocking you....

                  1. Browergal68 profile image60
                    Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Oh well... I've read your hateful posts also. Do you think your childish behavior and words will effect me? Nope!!! Think not. I have watched how all of your little group of atheist bullies gang up on some poor unsuspecting Christian and tear them to shreds. Well I don't have all the book smarts of the Bible to back me up, but I have the love of God. I guess you could call me one of those Jesus Freaks! Yeah I like that!!! big_smile

            2. Randy Godwin profile image95
              Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Oh, I knew you were from somewhere in the bible belt,  You did say you were a Baptist, didn't you?  Florida, probably!  You have the attitude, anyway!  :lol;


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  5. Cagsil profile image83
    Cagsilposted 4 years ago

    Randy, a Yankee?

    WOW! That's definitely something I've not heard on HubPages. lol

  6. Browergal68 profile image60
    Browergal68posted 4 years ago

    jomine you say it one way I say it MY way!!! Oh and sorry jd... I didn't realize that mocking had become a nice attribute. My bad... smile

    1. jdflom profile image83
      jdflomposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Nice, not nice... only your personal opinion can dictate that; but hateful? Far from.

      At this point though, it's getting too off topic.

  7. Browergal68 profile image60
    Browergal68posted 4 years ago

    Randy, you may feel you are insulting me. Well good for you. I accept your veiw. I felt that way to at one time. As for being a CULT, no it is a RELIGION. Heck the Baptist's even look down their nose at how I believe. I am one of a kind. Just the way I was created. A Jesus Freak, yes, that would be me. Kind of a Jesus Hippie wanna be. I am proud of who I am and what I believe.

    1. calynbana profile image87
      calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      That is great smile I am glad you can respond with such a positive attitude. That is sorely lacking in this thread :s

      1. Cagsil profile image83
        Cagsilposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Did you expect this thread to have a positive conversation when you started it? roll

        1. calynbana profile image87
          calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Well at least respectful. I try to hope for the best.

          1. Cagsil profile image83
            Cagsilposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Respectful?

            Most of the time respect is earned. Yes, respect can be given without being earned, but before one can respect anyone in any manner, they would first need to know you're being honest.

            Respect is never given to those who refuse to be honest. wink

            1. calynbana profile image87
              calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              So do you not respect anyone until they earn it? Interesting.

              1. calynbana profile image87
                calynbanaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                I am the opposite. I respect everyone until they lose it. Then I just respect their rights as humans and do not take their opinions quite as seriously.

            2. Browergal68 profile image60
              Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Cagsil I have to agree with you. I for one do not want anyone to think of me as bad. I just don't like to see anyone bashing someone because they think differently. I am a peace loving person (hence the term Hippie). I just want to see everyone get along. Alas, I know in this society it will take Hell freezing over for that to happen. sad

              1. Cagsil profile image83
                Cagsilposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Good to know.
                Then I suggest a change in view? perception? Or better yet, just maybe you should try learning more than you have already. Just a thought.
                Bashing? Is a relative term and it's based on whether or not, one's perception is skewed.

                I'm sorry you don't realize that some beliefs are just beyond ridiculous. There are some beliefs that are so irrational that if left unchecked by the consciously active, would ruin the entire human species, as in make extinct.
                Good for you being a peace loving person. Just remember, your individual actions will speak many more volumes than those of your words. wink

    2. Randy Godwin profile image95
      Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks for being honest and not being afraid to do so.  Others in this same thread could learn a lot from you.  Thanks again! smile

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      1. Browergal68 profile image60
        Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Yeah thank you calynbana. Good talking to you. Oh by the way Randy, FYI, I am from Missouri. LOL!!! smile

        1. Randy Godwin profile image95
          Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Missouri?  Wow, I thought everyone there were Mormons!  lol


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          1. Browergal68 profile image60
            Browergal68posted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I guess we will just have to agree to disagree... LOL Peace!!! smile

            1. Randy Godwin profile image95
              Randy Godwinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I certainly have no problem with that, Browergal.  smile

              Cool avatar, by the way.  Brings back fond memories.  I'm still an old hippie!smile


              Respect!
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