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The Socratic Method takes on Atheism ...

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posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 01:39 PM
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Originally posted by andrewh7
The Scientific method demands evidence in advance of reaching a conclusion.


And atheism is a definite disbelief in a God.

Where is the scientific evidence you base your conclusion on, that there is no God?

What you will return with, if anything, will be a bunch of straw-men knocking down old superstitions of the church. There IS no scientific evidence against the existence of any God.

There was no evidence FOR the existence of electricity, either, before a certain time. Did it not exist before then? HELL NO!



To the point:

Anyone who truly follows scientific evidence alone on these issues would be agnostic. NOT atheist OR Christian.


edit on 12-9-2010 by bsbray11 because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 01:45 PM
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"Where is the scientific evidence you base your conclusion on, that there is no God?"

Where is the scientific evidence that the Universe isn't on top of a turtle's back floating in a sea of happiness and love? God is as ridiculous a theory as that without any evidence. Get it?

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is God able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him God?

-Epicurus



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 01:52 PM
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Originally posted by bsbray11
Where is the scientific evidence you base your conclusion on, that there is no God?


You are shifting the burden of proof. The burden of proof is on the Theists, not the atheists.


Originally posted by bsbray11
What you will return with, if anything, will be a bunch of straw-men knocking down old superstitions of the church. There IS no scientific evidence against the existence of any God.


This is an argument from ignorance. We do no not have to disprove God. You have to prove him.


Originally posted by bsbray11
There was no evidence FOR the existence of electricity, either, before a certain time. Did it not exist before then? HELL NO!


It is still credulous for you to believe in such things without evidence. That is the definition of credulity.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 01:53 PM
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Originally posted by Crimelab
Where is the scientific evidence that the Universe isn't on top of a turtle's back floating in a sea of happiness and love?


No, it's turtles all the way down.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 01:55 PM
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reply to post by bsbray11
 


The problem is that I think maybe one person in this thread has made the claim that god doesn’t exist. From what I’ve read it seems everyone else is willing to accept the possibility that one does.

That’s also the problem with the OP’s method imho, it is meant to establish ignorance but I think the vast majority of atheists are perfectly happy to accept that they are ignorant when it comes to saying whether god does or does not exist. Most atheists just aren’t making a claim to challenge.

The atheist stance I see on here is most often, “God might exist but without evidence I see no reason to believe in one, so give me a reason”.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:02 PM
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reply to post by andrewh7
 



The Scientific method demands evidence in advance of reaching a conclusion. There's no evidence that God exists. Specifically looking for evidence of God to prove your preconceived ideas is backwards. You're supposed to take observations, produce a hypothesis, test that hypothesis by trying to prove it wrong, and then reach a conclusion.

So are you implying that science has looked for God? Are you saying I have preconceived ideas? Do you agree that to take observations, produce a hypothesis, test it by trying to prove it wrong and then reach a conclusion is the scientific method?


Every time someone makes one of these atheism attack threads, I ask them to produce evidence of God.

Are you implying this thread is an atheism attack thread? This thread from my personal view is the socratic method questioning atheism and thus far there has only been questioning and no attacks would you agree?


They never have before and they won't be able to this time. Why don't you superstitious religious zealots trying scrutinizing your own beliefs for a moment and discover that they were instilled in you at a young age and you've been attempting to justify them ever since?

So are you saying that you see this thread as an attack on atheist therefor the nest logical conclusion you have come to is for religious zealots to scrutinize their own beliefs? We can very well start a socratic method for your zealots however right now we are focused on atheist.

Would you also agree that the logic, reason, science, and everything that is currently known was also instilled in yourself at a young age?


You believe in God because someone in authority told you to.

No is this a fact? Are you sure that I believe in God and if so are you 100% sure that is is because some authority told me so? Who are these authorities?


If you grew up in another country or on an island by yourself, you would not believe in God or you would practice a different religion.

Ok so can it be said that if you yourself were born in another country or Island that perhaps you wouldn't be an atheist?


If your religious beliefs are simply a result of your parents and/or community, then they lack any external worth because they aren't constant. They're just another trait passed down from your parents, much like political philosophies.

SO you are saying your own set of beliefs and stances is a result of your parents and community?



I'll save you the time of telling me to prove God doesn't exist. That's a fallacy. No one can prove a negative. You might as well ask me to prove that that unicorns don't exist anywhere in the universe or that the world wasn't created by 100ft tall invisible elephant drinking a cup of coffee. Science would go nowhere if we spent all our waking hours disproving cockeyed guesses that aren't based on observations or experimentation.

So you are saying that we should base all knowledge on observation and experimentation? Are there states of matter that can't be observed and/or not yet experimented on?


You people are hypocrites.

So you are implying that people asking questions ala socratic method are all hypocrites for merely asking questions? Is that what we would call stereotyping?



You take advantage of scientific advancement every day of your life and yet you disregard the method that was utilized to drive that advancement.

So without asking me if I disregard this scientific method you are assuming that I disregard it? Does science look for God?


You fly in planes, drive cars, watch TV, and use your computers. You stand on the shoulders of generations of hard-working people with little to no understanding of any of your electronic toys or medicines.

Are you again assuming that I personally am this way? Have you asked me if I am this way?


You thank God for successful Chemotherapy but never ask about why you got cancer in the first place.

Is this again an assumption or a fact about me personally?



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:06 PM
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reply to post by OutKast Searcher
 


I found your comment very interesting, a little ray of sunshine in the midst of much adult angst and veiled aggression.

I'm a firm believer in God as the Supreme Entity; the sum expression of all possibilities and awareness, responsible for the free manifestation of the same - the source of all phenomena, able to objectively create and observe/ experience that creation, for the sake of being known and expressing 'itself' (I take the expression Himself) in a multiverse of limitless potential.

Having been raised in an atheist family, and being subjected to an incessant barrage of psych-manipulation since an early age, I began searching for a 'higher' reality at an early age - unsupported and isolated in that objective. I tried everything I could find in the New Age movement, channeled material, buddhism, reading the various world scriptures and dipping into Sufism and stuff along those lines. At all costs, I tried to avoid Christianity!

However, after a long and traumatic road, I came to be at the 'end of the road', having lost all hope, being without comfort in any sense. I prayed aloud one night (while drunk) and said "If you're real, please show me you can hear me, and I'll commit my life to you."

The next day I was drunk, in the local town, almost passed out and sitting on a bench set back from the main pavement. A young woman walking past suddenly stopped and turned to face me (it had appeared she was just walking along, with no interest in me, until 'something' prompted her to look in my direction).

She said, in a matter-of-fact way: "You've been praying, and God answers prayer".

From there onwards, things began to get better - and I became fully aware of the transcendental reality of God, through the Christian faith. From there, I've studied the mysticism of the Jewish heritage, and found that the concept of the Sefirot, and the ultimate reality of Eyn Sof, corresponds wonderfully with ideas of the formation of the universe according to the Big Bang theory, and more recent developments in dimensional theories and so forth.

So all in all, I'm firmly established in my 'faith', and cannot be swayed by atheist argument. Atheism is a symptom of the perversion of a scientific worldview in my opinion. Just as sexually addicted people can no longer enjoy sex, atheists can no longer truly appreciate the wonders of the universe, the order and precision of nature, the soul and the spirit. They claim to do so, accordingly claiming it as the grandeur they perceive in a rigidly mechanical and explicable universe, but it isn't true - at some level they deceive themselves. Additionally they often maintain a deep resentment and hatred for those who do in fact perceive the divinity beyond the veil, and ultimately towards the Divinity itself. And to any atheist whose blood just boiled, I won't be drawn into an argument, and I won't retract the statement. It's my opinion, and I'm entitled to it.

Absolute morality is almost always dismissed by such people, in error. CS Lewis wrote eloquently and convincingly on the subject - his books "Christian Reflections", and "Fern Seeds and Elephants" are excellent intellectual treatises on a Christian perspective of science, progress, morality, ethics, the role of government and so forth.

Ancient scribes were inspired to comment as follows:

Jeremiah 8:9
The wise will be put to shame; they will be dismayed and trapped. Since they have rejected the word of the LORD, what kind of wisdom do they have?

Jeremiah 9:23
This is what the LORD says: "Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches"

1 Corinthians 1:19
For it is written: "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate."

1 Corinthians 1:20
Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?

1 Corinthians 1:25
For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man's strength.

1 Corinthians 3:19
For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God's sight. As it is written: "He catches the wise in their craftiness" ;

And here's a prophetic pointer which will be played out in the years to come:

Isaiah 29:14
Therefore once more I will astound these people with wonder upon wonder; the wisdom of the wise will perish, the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish."



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:10 PM
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Originally posted by bsbray11

Originally posted by andrewh7
The Scientific method demands evidence in advance of reaching a conclusion.


And atheism is a definite disbelief in a God.

To the point:

Anyone who truly follows scientific evidence alone on these issues would be agnostic. NOT atheist OR Christian.



The man makes a solid point. Any true scientist cannot legitimately establish a doctrine of atheism, for it is merely a belief system like any other.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:19 PM
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Originally posted by bsbray11
I think the crux of this is that atheism requires just as much faith as Christianity or any other monotheistic religion.

We can't even agree on how "God" would be defined.


The people who think science has disproven the idea of God: Whaaaaat?!?!?

Can anyone show me scientific literature that proves a God doesn't exist scientifically?


Can you show me scientific literature that proves that the universe wasn't created by marshmallow-obsessed leprechaun? Please read the post right above you and look up the word fallacy?



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:33 PM
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Originally posted by andrewh7
Can you show me scientific literature that proves that the universe wasn't created by marshmallow-obsessed leprechaun? Please read the post right above you and look up the word fallacy?


You are committing a fallacy and I already know it better than you.

No, I can't show you the scientific literature that proves that universe wasn't created by marshmallow-obsessed leprechauns.

Because it doesn't exist.


Now were you going to show me the evidence that God doesn't exist either?



Science works like this:

Positive claim ---> positive proof ---> scientific fact/theory.

"There is a God!" ---> no proof ---> not a scientific fact/theory.

"There is NO GOD!" ---> no proof ---> not a scientific fact/theory.


"There is applesauce in my hair!" ---> no proof ---> not a scientific fact/theory.

"There is NO applesauce in my hair!" ---> no proof ---> not a scientific theory.


A force we call "gravity" "pulls" objects towards the center of the Earth ---> proven! ---> DING DING DING!!! scientific fact.


What do you think, that if you haven't proven something, and you just negate it, then the negation is automatically proven?

And YOU want to talk about logical fallacies? You have a lot more homework to do kid.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:37 PM
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Originally posted by Jerry_Teps

Originally posted by bsbray11
Where is the scientific evidence you base your conclusion on, that there is no God?


You are shifting the burden of proof. The burden of proof is on the Theists, not the atheists.


Sorry, but no, it's not. It's on BOTH of you ---because--- BOTH of you are making claims.

I am neither a Christian nor an atheist.

You are both talking out of your ass as far as I'm concerned, and I AM concerned with science! Science does not answer these questions like you apparently seem to think they do.


You are not excused from being obligated to prove your POSITIVE CLAIM that no God exists.

Just as Christians are not excused from their POSITIVE CLAIM that God does exist. Both are statements that are NOT VERIFIED!




Originally posted by bsbray11
What you will return with, if anything, will be a bunch of straw-men knocking down old superstitions of the church. There IS no scientific evidence against the existence of any God.


This is an argument from ignorance. We do no not have to disprove God. You have to prove him.


I have to prove God? Why? I don't believe in it!! Come on, don't be stupid.

I don't believe there is no God, either. Want to prove me wrong now???



It is still credulous for you to believe in such things without evidence. That is the definition of credulity.


Then you admit you have no scientific proof that God doesn't exist.

Like I said, the only LOGICAL position is agnosticism. EVERYTHING ELSE requires faith. Which you call "credulity." Credulity, faith, pick your favorite. They are not science.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:41 PM
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Originally posted by Mike_A
The atheist stance I see on here is most often, “God might exist but without evidence I see no reason to believe in one, so give me a reason”.


That is an acceptable stance, but it also already conforms to my own position. I am on that same "boat." It's agnosticism.


So then why are these people trying to attack my reasoning? Because they are not really thinking like you describe. They HAVE put faith in their atheism. It's as if when they realized they couldn't trust blind faith in a Christian God anymore in this country, they immediately had to put their faith somewhere else and fast. And then even questioning atheism to them, is like questioning Christianity to a Christian. It's just not going to go anywere. It's pathetic if you ask me, that people have to rely so heavily on faith at all, and defend themselves with nothing but worthless opinions in the face of true science.


edit on 12-9-2010 by bsbray11 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:46 PM
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Originally posted by dominicus


1. Why are you an Atheist?


There are a good number of reasons. Though, I consider myself more so an Agnostic... but the difference between Agnostic and Atheist is more/less semantic... so I am both. Atheist in that I do not currently practice a religion or believe in a divine deity (or deities), but Agnostic in that I'm open to the possibility.

I am an Atheist because I've deeply considered/questioned religion and god in general and have found that, if I am to be intellectually humble, I cannot say for sure that god exists. I have not experienced any direct evidence attributable to a conscious/divine god... and especially not of the sort of supernatural activity you hear about within religions. Also, from all of the 'evidence' I've heard for the existence of god or the validity of adopting a religion... NONE of it has convinced me much. If we consider ourselves truth seekers, then we must follow the truth wherever it leads.



2. Does not believing in something prove it does not exist?


No. I don't believe the vast majority of Atheists espouse such a notion either.


3. Do you agree that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence?


Sure. However, with an absence of evidence, there is subsequently no reason/foundation to argue the existence of something.


4. What do you think about the large number of people that say they have experienced God?


I can't say for sure. Certainly I see that some of them attribute explainable experiences with god or divinity. Certainly some people are crazy, delusional, and/or prone to hallucination. Certainly the human power of belief is more than sufficient to override logic/reason. Certainly many people are wrong about many things. Perhaps people are onto something... that is a definite possibility, but as of yet it is unconvincing.


5. Does one's claim to have experienced God hold as much weight as your claim to not having had that experience?


Depends. Each case must be analyzed individually to weigh its validity/truth. However, if two people have the same experience, one of them attributes it to god or the supernatural while the other either doesn't jump to such a conclusion or has a more realistic explanation, then I'm more prone to siding with the latter person. Jumping to a divine/religious conclusion for events/experiences is a HUGE leap of faith/logic, and while it might serve peoples' desire to connect their beliefs with the temporal world, it does not serve for rational/thorough explanation.


6. (Hypothetically) if God did exist, what would your version of he/she/it be?


I'll assume you're asking me what the MOST likely form of god would be... When pondering this I've considered Pantheism, where god is sort of an emergent property of the universe itself (i.e. God IS the universe and vise versa). I've also considered that god could be a sort of programmer (programming the laws/volume/behavior of the universe and then running the program)... who knows what form that would take, I certainly dont mean a computer geek in a human form at a computer, but something inconcievably different. Also, while considering consciousness and the origins of our individual consciousnesses, I've considered a sort of soul/life source similar to Gaia I suppose. However... these are all just speculation, fanciful concepts while trying to grasp what is out of reach, I certainly haven't wholly subscribed to these notions, but they're fun/interesting to chew on.


7. Is logic and reason limited? And if the answer is yes, is there something beyond the aforementioned?


It depends what you mean by that... certainly logic and reason are not the only tools we can use to garner information/truth from our world. Certainly logic/reason are a filter for the information we ingest via our senses. However, if we look at the big picture, logic and reason have taken us leaps and bounds into a (previously) inconcievable understanding of our universe. Also, logic and reason are not belief systems, they're just words for a mental process of assessing our reality sanely and rationally, finding patterns and figuring out what they mean and how they can be applied. Very basic/crucial concepts, really. As for some sense beyond logic/reason... I think you'd still use logic/reason to analyze information from any supernatural 6th sense, so to speak. With that said, I haven't seen definitive proof of the supernatural or supernatural senses.


8. (Hypothetically) if science proved the existence of God as fact, what would you do being an Atheist?


Well... that'd be pretty hard to deny right? Like I said, I am a seeker of truth. If the science seemed solid enough then I'd absolutely be open to it and reconsider my position. If it was proven to me that god existed (or what I would confidently call god), I would change my mind, I mean why not?


9. Do you agree superstition is relative to the knowledge of the times? i.e. airplanes and internet were once considered superstitious.


I'm not sure if airplanes/internet were superstitions so to speak... perhaps you mean they were impossible fantasies to people prior to their existence? Also... I'm not sure that people largely concieved of airplanes or internet before their invention... at least not in much detail. Certainly flying machines were concieved all throughout history, but something like the internet was much less likely... that's sort of like asking somebody to concieve of pop tarts before their existence- the details render it an arbitrary/random conception. Also, regardless, airplanes and internet were both derived from the application of scientific laws/theories and mathematics, they are also physical/digital technologies and not magic/supernatural.


10. Do you base your Atheism specifically on what you can comprehend with your 5 senses, logic/reason, and what is currently scientifically known?


For the most part? Yes. This can apply well to many things... for instance, not believing in Santa, the Tooth Fairy, unicorns, centaurs, elves, monsters, or superpowers. I have no reason to believe in these things, in fact I have good reason not to. This can more or less be applied to god and especially religion, in my eyes.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:51 PM
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reply to post by bsbray11
 



So then why are these people trying to attack my reasoning? Because they are not really thinking like you describe. They HAVE put faith in their atheism.


Don’t get me wrong, some do, but to assume that this is the case of all atheists and to argue on this basis will only lead to misunderstandings imo.

As for the “is it atheism, is it agnosticism” debate. I’d rather not go into that one… not again.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 02:56 PM
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Originally posted by Mike_A
As for the “is it atheism, is it agnosticism” debate. I’d rather not go into that one… not again.


Honestly I did not even realize this was debated.


a·the·ist
n.
One who disbelieves or denies the existence of God or gods.


www.thefreedictionary.com...


ag·nos·tic
n
1.
a. One who believes that it is impossible to know whether there is a God.
b. One who is skeptical about the existence of God but does not profess true atheism.
2. One who is doubtful or noncommittal about something.


www.thefreedictionary.com...



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 03:00 PM
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1. Why are you an Atheist?

Personally, I believe in God, but not in any organized religion. I'm a Deist and Freethinker.

2. Does not believing in something prove it does not exist?

Of course not. That would mean that the people who thought their earth was flat or that the Sun went around it were correct. We don't know everything today, but we certainly know more than they did.

3. Do you agree that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence?

No. I have heard many people talk about "evidence" on many issues and have usually found that no one ever knows all the "evidence" anyway.


4. What do you think about the large number of people that say they have experienced God?

I would refer them to one of the classic books by William James called "The Varieties of Religious Experience".

5. Does one's claim to have experienced God hold as much weight as your claim to not having had that experience?

Faith and spirituality are personal, subjective experiences, and in this area I think i can make allowance for the fact that God knows our limitations and is big enough to tolerate a wide variety of pathways, folkways and beliefs about the divine.


6. (Hypothetically) if God did exist, what would your version of he/she/it be?

The Creator of this infinite Multiverse, which is far above our comprehension, even though we know more about it than we used to even 200 or 300 years ago.

7. Is logic and reason limited? And if the answer is yes, is there something beyond the aforementioned?

Absolutely. We are very limited creatures, not gods. We make mistakes all the times. Our perceptions and thought processes often lead us to incorrect conclusions. This is how we learn.

8. (Hypothetically) if science proved the existence of God as fact, what would you do being an Atheist?

I have never expected "science" to prove any such thing. It is all right in its place, dealing with the physical-material world, but I have never thought of it as then end-all and be-all.

9. Do you agree superstition is relative to the knowledge of the times? i.e. airplanes and internet were once considered superstitious.

Yes. From history we know that due to very limited knowledge, many things that we always explained in mystical-spiritual terms in the past are now explained better by science.


10. Do you base your Atheism specifically on what you can comprehend with your 5 senses, logic/reason, and what is currently scientifically known?



As a Deist, I know better than to base everything on my own very limited logic, reason and senses. I doubt that I even know a tiny fraction of 1% about what's really out there in the Multiverse.


edit on 12-9-2010 by witness63 because: Didn't want to use the 'quote" function for this one.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 03:04 PM
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reply to post by bsbray11
 


Oh there is... there is...

www.abovetopsecret.com...




posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 03:21 PM
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Originally posted by bsbray11
You are committing a fallacy and I already know it better than you.

No, I can't show you the scientific literature that proves that universe wasn't created by marshmallow-obsessed leprechauns.

Because it doesn't exist.


You just answered your own question.


Originally posted by bsbray11
Sorry, but no, it's not. It's on BOTH of you ---because--- BOTH of you are making claims.


Where did I make a claim? You are shifting the burden of proof. I do not need to disprove their assertion to reject it. Stop acting pseudo-intellectual if you do not understand the basics behind formal logic.


Originally posted by bsbray11
I am neither a Christian nor an atheist.


That does not matter, you do not need to take a position in order the shift the burden of proof.


Originally posted by bsbray11
You are not excused from being obligated to prove your POSITIVE CLAIM that no God exists.


No, it is an ontological negative. It is a 'negative claim'. The burden of proof rests with the ontological positive.


Originally posted by bsbray11
Just as Christians are not excused from their POSITIVE CLAIM that God does exist. Both are statements that are NOT VERIFIED!


I do not need to disprove the existence of a deity to dismiss it. Disprove fairies, Santa or leprechauns.



Originally posted by bsbray11
I have to prove God? Why? I don't believe in it!! Come on, don't be stupid.

I don't believe there is no God, either. Want to prove me wrong now???


Oh the irony.


Originally posted by bsbray11
Then you admit you have no scientific proof that God doesn't exist.


Where did I say that? You clearly do not understand the fallacies in your logic.


Originally posted by bsbray11
Like I said, the only LOGICAL position is agnosticism. EVERYTHING ELSE requires faith. Which you call "credulity." Credulity, faith, pick your favorite. They are not science.


No it isn't, does it require faith to reject the existence of fairies or Santa? No. You clearly do not understand what the meaning of the word faith is. Faith is belief without justification. The justification for the rejection of the belief in deities is because they are unsubstantiated. Do you not understand this?


edit on 12-9-2010 by Jerry_Teps because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 03:23 PM
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Why do people believe in a god? Because they have been taught to believe in a god.

I do not believe in any god - - in the religious sense.

What I do believe is based in science.



posted on Sep, 12 2010 @ 03:27 PM
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reply to post by Mike_A
 

Hey Im in the process of replying to your last set of answers and a few others.

Im also waiting for replies from; andrewh7(page 4), Astyanax(page 3), Smack (page 2), Once returned (page 2)

I still have to reply to benevolent heretic (page 3), Mike_A page 3 and the Djin page 2 amongst others please bear with me



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