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Ask An Atheist Anything

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posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 12:02 AM
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Originally posted by C09JayLT
reply to post by adjensen
 


I have not seen any ultimate sense of good. I would be interested in seeing the source if it existed. I can imagine such a source, but without proof I can't say in truely believe in it.


If you can envision a world in which God reconciled himself to our level, the immortal creator becoming mortal, consider the words of Christ, who said to Thomas, one who actually saw him in his physical "proof":

John 20:28-29 'Thomas said to him, "My Lord and my God!" Then Jesus told him, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."'

God expects this "leap of faith", because if you knew, for a fact, that he was what he said he was, you would come to him out of fear, not out of love. Not out of a desire to do what he wanted you to do because it was what you wanted, but because you were afraid of doing otherwise.

Just like you don't see (I assume) a good relationship with a woman (or man) as being one where you've "trapped" her into being with you, but where she's with you because she loves you for who you are.




posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 12:10 AM
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Originally posted by adjensen
Well, I'd beg to differ, if for no other reason than if you've accepted the fact that you're not in a position to dismiss the existence of God, you now have the responsibility to evaluate whether, in fact, God has made any effort to reconcile himself to you. Sitting on the sidelines and saying "who knows?" isn't really much of a position.

Isn't this just opportunism for Theists to recruit those who may still be at a point where they can be taken under the wing of Religion?


It's ironic, I suppose, but, as a Christian, I have more respect for the honest atheist, who is agreeable to say that he has a solid belief in the non-existence of anything beyond what we are, than an agnostic, who shrugs his shoulders and says "I dunno. Maybe yes, maybe no." I don't agree with the atheist's choice, I mourn for his loss, but I can, at least, acknowledge that he has made a decision and holds to it, and respect him for his beliefs.

Let's be honest here. You probably have more respect for Atheists because you know the effort involved in convincing them that they are wrong is much more difficult than the task of convincing an Agnostic that they should become Theists.


If agnosticism isn't a path to recognizing God, or recognizing his non-existence, it's nothing at all. As Neil Peart says, "if you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice!" And, if the Christian perspective is correct (I don't know, it probably applies to all deistic perspectives,) claiming to make no choice is the same thing as saying "no thanks" to whatever the faith has to offer, which makes one wonder at the logic of this viewpoint at all.

I suppose you are completely oblivious to your heavily Religious point of view when saying this. For Atheists and Agnostics, life might not function according to the "one way is all right, one way is all wrong" system. You have been conditioned to think that anything short of acknowledgement and acceptance of an omni-X God equals disbelief in His existence.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 12:24 AM
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Originally posted by Dark Ghost

Originally posted by adjensen
Well, I'd beg to differ, if for no other reason than if you've accepted the fact that you're not in a position to dismiss the existence of God, you now have the responsibility to evaluate whether, in fact, God has made any effort to reconcile himself to you. Sitting on the sidelines and saying "who knows?" isn't really much of a position.

Isn't this just opportunism for Theists to recruit those who may still be at a point where they can be taken under the wing of Religion?


Nope, not really. I don't view any great advantage to converting anyone. Sad to see you go, but my personal belief is that, if you don't want to believe, that's between you and God. Once you understand what God offers, it's not really on me to convince you that you're wrong in your dismissal. My responsibility, if any, is to let you know that God is, in my opinion, real, and that he loves you, and that he wants you to love him. If you reject that, it's not really any of my concern.



It's ironic, I suppose, but, as a Christian, I have more respect for the honest atheist, who is agreeable to say that he has a solid belief in the non-existence of anything beyond what we are, than an agnostic, who shrugs his shoulders and says "I dunno. Maybe yes, maybe no." I don't agree with the atheist's choice, I mourn for his loss, but I can, at least, acknowledge that he has made a decision and holds to it, and respect him for his beliefs.

Let's be honest here. You probably have more respect for Atheists because you know the effort involved in convincing them that they are wrong is much more difficult than the task of convincing an Agnostic that they should become Theists.


No, my respect is out of them for committing to something, regardless of whether I agree or not. I'm not a big fan of hedging your bets, particularly as concerns an omniscient being (see my earlier comments about Pascal's Theorem.)



If agnosticism isn't a path to recognizing God, or recognizing his non-existence, it's nothing at all. As Neil Peart says, "if you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice!" And, if the Christian perspective is correct (I don't know, it probably applies to all deistic perspectives,) claiming to make no choice is the same thing as saying "no thanks" to whatever the faith has to offer, which makes one wonder at the logic of this viewpoint at all.

I suppose you are completely oblivious to your heavily Religious point of view when saying this. For Atheists and Agnostics, life might not function according to the "one way is all right, one way is all wrong" system. You have been conditioned to think that anything short of acknowledgement and acceptance of an omni-X God equals disbelief in His existence.


There is a pretty obvious difference between the views of atheists and deists, but it's unfair to associate agnostics with atheists. A true agnostic would reject the atheistic point of view with as much vehemence as he'd reject a deistic view.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 12:40 AM
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Originally posted by adjensen
Nope, not really. I don't view any great advantage to converting anyone. Sad to see you go, but my personal belief is that, if you don't want to believe, that's between you and God. Once you understand what God offers, it's not really on me to convince you that you're wrong in your dismissal. My responsibility, if any, is to let you know that God is, in my opinion, real, and that he loves you, and that he wants you to love him. If you reject that, it's not really any of my concern.

The burden is on God to prove to me that He does exist and He does love me. So far I am yet to experience why those statements are true. I live in a world where evil, injustice and suffering effects millions of people around the world. For God to permit these things and expect belief in Him when he does not alleviate these problems is unreasonable.


No, my respect is out of them for committing to something, regardless of whether I agree or not. I'm not a big fan of hedging your bets, particularly as concerns an omniscient being (see my earlier comments about Pascal's Theorem.)

The thing about Pascal's Theorem is that it relies on the notion of Fear: what if I am wrong and have to face punishment because I did not believe in God! Why must the Appeal To Fear be used to convince people that they should believe in God to be on the safe side? Don't you think logic and reason are better?


There is a pretty obvious difference between the views of atheists and deists, but it's unfair to associate agnostics with atheists. A true agnostic would reject the atheistic point of view with as much vehemence as he'd reject a deistic view.

But modern religion is basically saying that: either you DO believe or you DO NOT believe. To not commit to a belief is considered making a decision that opposes God. In essence, most religions do not recognise Agnosticism because there are only two possible choices: To believe or not to believe!



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 12:40 AM
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manyreply to post by adjensen
 


Many things are not ultimately 100% knowable, so I am comfortable with 'leaps of faith,' however I need a certain degree of confidence to make the jump. Take atheism for example. I have seen sufficient evidence to believe that there is no god. Alternatively, I have insuffucient evidence to reject the null of the god hypothesis. Because I have evidence in favor of atheism and a lack of evidence in favor of god, I believe there is no god even though it is not truely provable. It is a 'leap' to atheism that is small enough to me that I don't need faith to sustain it, so I am more comfortable with it than the acceptance of a hypothesis for which I have no evidence and a good deal of contradictory evidence which would require much faith to sustain.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 12:59 AM
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reply to post by traditionaldrummer
 


Didn't you create this same thread a couple of times already in the past? Just wondering...Did they get deleted or shut down? Or are you just asking again? I'm not trying to be rude or sarcastic or anything, I'm just genuinely curious..



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 01:18 AM
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If we are just pulses of energy running through our brain, then we aren't our bodies. We are energy flowing through our brain. When death occurs, we survive, because energy cannot be created or destroyed. Sorry if this wasn't clear enough.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 03:17 AM
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I 'm not sure if it was covered in the 18 pages of "fluff"
Dear atheist,looking at your inevitable death (the one thing in common we all share) are you scared? Not that you are wrong or "could be" wrong about God or religion, but just a simple, are you scared? Do you fear the lights finally going out and there being an absolute nothing?

No bashing intended. I just want to get a feel for your end life thoughts.

I think we all fear this inevitable finality. When we finally experience this mystery, we are ultimately alone. And for me it scares the crap out of me. I cannot grasp the concept that we are here for what 80 years average and poof, no more, black? Something HAS to happen. A transference of knowledge, of energy, or else it's just some cruel joke.

I don't necessarily prescribe to the heaven and hell thing, personally I have taken to the belief that all souls come to earth to learn, then go somewhere else, not really bad or good, just ignorant of things.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 03:44 AM
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Originally posted by 547000
If we are just pulses of energy running through our brain, then we aren't our bodies. We are energy flowing through our brain. When death occurs, we survive, because energy cannot be created or destroyed. Sorry if this wasn't clear enough.


There seems to be a worldwide consensus that energy cannot be created nor destroyed. But is this ultimately accurate? Just because it has never been proven that it can be created or destroyed, does that mean it is impossible?

The other problem about that statement, which btw I am not disputing, is that it does not say where the energy that is in existence originally came from. If energy cannot be created or destroyed, how did it come to be?



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 04:32 AM
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Originally posted by Dark Ghost

Originally posted by 547000
If we are just pulses of energy running through our brain, then we aren't our bodies. We are energy flowing through our brain. When death occurs, we survive, because energy cannot be created or destroyed. Sorry if this wasn't clear enough.


There seems to be a worldwide consensus that energy cannot be created nor destroyed. But is this ultimately accurate? Just because it has never been proven that it can be created or destroyed, does that mean it is impossible?

The other problem about that statement, which btw I am not disputing, is that it does not say where the energy that is in existence originally came from. If energy cannot be created or destroyed, how did it come to be?


You're getting warmer


What exactly is nothing?



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 05:58 AM
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I am so glad that I found this thread. I must admit that I have not read all eighteen pages of it but that is mainly because I have a headache, I will read them later. I do have a question that I would appreciate an atheist answering. I love to read and I find myself on forums constantly, some I join and others I just read. The OP has mentioned the verbal attacks that atheists endure and I'm sure that they do. Since I am a believer and have been to Christian threads I do have a little experience with them as well. I have never found a Christian thread that didn't have an atheist telling everyone what idiots they are. Even here on ATS you can find insults aimed at believers on just about any forum. My questions are these.
If you do no believe in god, do you feel it is your duty to inform everyone else that they are wrong?
If atheists do not believe in god, why do they spend so much time on Christian threads?

I have no interest in doll making and I can honestly say that I have never been to a doll making thread. Why are atheists so obsessed with what others believe?

I am part Irish but I do not find a reason to post that bit of information on every forum, why do you need to tell everyone what you believe? Haven't you made a decision to believe that there is no god? Doesn't that decision have a profound effect on your life?

I am not trying to prove a point or insult anyone, I would really like to know how an atheist would answer these questions.

S&F for an interesting thread.
Sorry I got a little carried away but I do have a lot of questions.

[edit on 16-7-2010 by ChicUFO]



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:03 AM
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Originally posted by dominicus
What I'm saying, is that existence itself is "the" deity of God. The evidence of existence is apparent. You know that you are, you know that what is ....Is. That Isness and Amness of all existence is the deity that that you say there is no evidence for.

Now what will you do?


Nothing.

Redefining the standards of evidence says much.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:05 AM
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Originally posted by ptmckiou

An atheist believes there is no life force outside their own body.


That is incorrect, sir.


So, again... how do you justify the scientific research in to dimensions where 3D physicality doesn't exist?


I have already answered this question.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:10 AM
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Originally posted by adjensen
The best I can come up with is something like "In the face of the evidence, I see no proof for the existence of God", which is a long way from "I know there is no God" and a fair bit closer to "I believe that there is no God," because it's merely you interpreting an observation.


This is the difference between "strong atheism" and "soft atheism".

No matter how you reckon it, non-belief is not belief. When one presents an unproven proposition that is also not falsifiable by a third party and the third party rejects the proposition, this is not a matter of belief for the third party.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:21 AM
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Originally posted by juveous
You didn't even explore the aspects of the human brain and how those theories conflict with free-will and compatibilism?

Did you just stop researching or what?

Because you should at least say, hey there is a lot of science I don't know about, I'm just used to hearing what others say and repeating it....Its just confusing if you hold a title of 99.999% assertiveness.

Not to sound like i'm ragging but, atheism is such a joke sometimes - It is just a slick version of agnosticism.

You say there is not enough evidence to convince you of theism - but in reality you just aren't sure. It is like you pride yourself in confidence by holding a stance that is easy to argue against, when in reality - you know you're not sure.


Sir, I did not claim to have all the answers to any esoteric field of scientific research one could present. I admitted freely that I was incapable of answering your question. My lack of knowledge of unknown areas of science really has little to do with my stance as an atheist.

If I am open to evidence of a deity then one could say in a sense that I am an "agnostic". But given that nobody throughout the epochs has been able to produce evidence in favor of the claim of the existence of deities I am able to form a certitude based upon the incredible odds against it. The odds being so great in my favor that not forming a certitude on these odds would be beyond illogical. Even if I remain open to evidence I am still a de facto atheist.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:28 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


Energy my continue to exist, but there is no reason to believe it stays togeather. WHAT I am made of will remain, but WHO will disapear. Which is another reason for atheists to be good because in the end you ammount to the lives you touch and the lagacy you leave. That's it.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:31 AM
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Originally posted by edmc^2
traditionaldrummer,

Serious questions -

I would like to know:

What made you become an atheist?
Have you always felt this way?
Is it because of your education?
The problems you experienced?
Or religious hypocrisy and false teachings you've seen?


My default position has always been atheistic: born an atheist you might say. I tried to discover whether any religious claims could be true over the years and none of them present objective evidence of their claims. Leaving religion aside, there was a chance that scientific method could discover a deity but even in this field of observation, deities have failed to turn up.

Any critical thinker would have to conclude that there is nothing to this proposition of the existence of deities. Amongst other things, it appears to be the very human fear of death, promise of reward and justice, desire to be lead and terror that we may actually be in an atheistic universe that drives the desire for one to adhere to religions and validate the existence of deities. Strip yourself of these human emotions and observe the objective evidence favoring deities (none) and one is left to conclude the obvious: there are none.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:32 AM
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reply to post by brutalsun
 


It does not make me afraid. Things die, it happens. All things come to an end. I would rather have my 100 years and make the most of it than continue on forever anyways. Continuing on in the legacy I leave and the lives I touch is enough for me.



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 06:42 AM
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If there is nothing after death, why would they fear nothing?

[edit on 16-7-2010 by ChicUFO]



posted on Jul, 16 2010 @ 07:36 AM
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Originally posted by Enigami
reply to post by traditionaldrummer
 


Didn't you create this same thread a couple of times already in the past? Just wondering...Did they get deleted or shut down? Or are you just asking again? I'm not trying to be rude or sarcastic or anything, I'm just genuinely curious..


I have never made a thread like this.

There may have been others but I didn't see them.



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