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The problem with Religious debates ONLINE

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posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 07:33 AM
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Originally posted by BSTStar
reply to [url= by Prezbo369[/url]
 


I always love these empty edits after a little spat - perfect 'cat got your tongue' moment.


Lol that's pretty desperate, twas a double post genius



This gives us some insight into your atheist religion. 40 years - wow - you're an angry old man dude.


Spare me your weak attempt at psychoanalysis, its typical of your Ilk though ill give you that.


Is it eternal punishment for "finite" transgressions that you find truly unfair? I think you're mixing my belief system with your own. You believe they are "finite" transgressions because your belief system precludes the possibility of eternal life. So let me play along with you, if you believe that life is "finite" then why would you reject a system of laws controlling human behavior that threatens, but cannot deliver, eternal punishment? Perhaps the threat of this for us primitives (as someone called me) improves our behavior - wouldn't you benefit from this? If it didn't, then we'd be more likely to transgress against you, correct? Less perceived punishment, higher likelihood of transgression.


If the threat of burning forever in a lake of fire is all that's keeping you from 'misbehaving', then for the sake of the people around you, I'm glad you practice this primitive bronze-age superstition. Other people though, myself included, do not need the threat of eternal punishment to behave and live life to its fullest.


To me, what you're actually railing against is "final" punishment for what you perceive to be "finite" transgressions. This is actually at the core of someone who rejects authority and it wouldn't matter if the authority was God, some perceived God, the state, or your next door neighbor. You don't believe that *any* transgression merits a "final" punishment. I believe that eternal transgressions with eternal consequences merit final punishment because I believe there is eternal life.


The rejection of these particular superstitions, and the morally bankrupt idea of eternal punishment, is not a signifier of a rejection of all authority. This is a fallacious and weak argument.



You and others can mis-characterize my belief as joyful but it isn't. Sin is a tragedy because it destroys life. The fact that sin must be punished is a consequence and a double tragedy. Thankfully, God can't and won't leave the sheep to be devoured by wolves.


No the Shepard waits until he's sheared enough wool from his flock before slaughtering them, or just slaughters the lambs because they're the tastiest.

Terrible analogy




posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 07:45 AM
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reply to post by john_bmth
 

John, you didn't even read and understand the post you originally responded to. There is nothing to rebut, since you responded to something I didn't say.

Also, you were obviously looking to argue with someone you thought was a Christian. Bad assumption. I'm not. I'm an atheist. You were trolling.

End of exchange. Take care, and see you around the forums.



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 08:02 AM
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to me, i don't care what or who you believe in. it could be a purple easter bunny for all i care. what i do care about is having "purple easter bunny" laws that i'm suppose to live by, or, that i'm deliberately discriminated against because i don't believe in the purple easter bunny.

my entire "religous" belief boils down to this..."do onto others, as you would have them do onto you"......simple to understand, no churches, no money needed, no people setting rules or passing laws on how to live your life.



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 08:40 AM
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reply to post by Prezbo369
 


Rather than taking the dialogue personally, you should detach yourself from the personal implications of what I'm saying and see if you can deconstruct the premises, pattern of logic, ordering of alternatives, and/or the values expressed in what I'm saying. For instance:

1) Eternal life: you could simply refute this assumption. The only evidence I have for it is found in the pages of the bible, describing the mysterious interactions between God and humankind. In the same bible (suspiciously self-referential support) I have consistent descriptions of the behavior of individuals who believed they saw the risen Jesus and descriptions of their behavior (more self-referential support) after supposedly witnessing this. Instead of implying that I'm a primitive ape, why not just say, I disagree with your premise about eternal life because I've never seen anyone rise from the dead. You could further say that since the bible is the only place these happenings are discussed it's a rigged bit of evidence. That's really all you have to say.
2) Eternal punishment: Without eternal life there is no eternal punishment, therefore, simply defeat the eternal life premise and voila', you're done. You could say, I don't like people being killed and their life terminated for various offenses.
3) Finite offenses: Same approach, defeat the eternal life premise and you defeat my argument (built on the eternal life premise) that these offenses are not finite, but rather, have eternal significance and consequences.

The problem is that you're not attacking the "eternity" premise very well and devolving into an argument about the "value" of punishment and the definition of crimes. Attacking value systems is notoriously difficult - they're matters of preference. You seem to not like the prospect of eternal punishment because it is comparing infinity (eternity) to an act of limited duration, e.g. sexual perversion of various kinds. Whereas I am arguing that we are comparing equal terms in this model of crime and punishment - both eternal.

So, let's start with a very simple question: do you believe in eternity for the soul? I think that's a very good baseline for everyone else here also of many different faiths, what is your view of eternity?



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 08:49 AM
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reply to post by jimmyx
 


Do unto others...what a great concept. Sounds a lot like the "love thy neighbor as yourself" of the bible, both old and new testament.

Anyway, this only solves the problem in the context of defining the "unto" part. You can't have a system that doesn't define that. For instance, using a bit of hyperbole for arguments sake, let's say everyone around you is a sadomasochist. They would be glad to tie you up and beat the living day lights out of you, after all, they enjoy it themselves. Would that be right? Of course not.

Ergo, the need for an agreed to standard of rules. These rules likely have to come from an abstraction bigger than one individual; otherwise, we'll never agree.

The other half of the religion you missed though - love God. Since God is the one who is handily used to define these rules, if you don't love God, then you won't accept his rules.

To summarize, to love your neighbor as yourself you must have a system of rules. The only system of rules that can be agreed to need to come from an abstraction beyond any single individual (or we won't agree). That means that we have to have respect for that abstraction and arbitrarily agree to abide by it or the system fails.



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 08:55 AM
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Originally posted by BSTStar
reply to [url= by Prezbo369[/url]
 

1) Eternal life: you could simply refute this assumption. The only evidence I have for it is found in the pages of the bible


Lol need I say more?

I'll outline this one more time for you, I do not believe things like ghouls, ghosts, souls, spirits, gods, leprechauns, minotaurs, hobbits or rancors exist. I've never seen, read or heard of any good reason to believe the observed laws of the universe are regularly suspended in order for these things to exist. And I certainly don't give the bible any credibility other than a crude and immoral collection of stories about stories.

The fact that someone once wrote down 'there is a god, and an afterlife', is not evidence of such things existing, not even close.

It's the poorly thought out fiction of mortals who have gotten greedy.



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 09:10 AM
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Originally posted by AfterInfinity
reply to post by windword
 



The future does, indeed, look bright!


You're funny!


LOL, I WAS trying to project some personality!


But, ubber religious folk will balk and moan, as they rail against medical and technological advancement, and scream of materialism and fallen angels!



These are people who have understood part of the Bible to its core, and have listened well to the dangers posed by being too indulgent in material desires. They are now mortally afraid of what should happen if they were to fall too far into the pit, and so they err on the side of caution, as recommended by the Bible. But again, this was in a time when a papercut was akin to slicing your wrists. Extra caution was necessary for survival in an age of minimal technology or medicine.


I don't think there's anyone who "understands any part of the Bible to it's core," but I think there are people who think they do.

I'm not sure I get your paper cut analogy. I grew up in a Pentecostal evangelical kind of environment, where the "rapture" was going to happen any minute now! It's hard to get a grip on life, little alone your future, when you're thinking everything is evil, and everything is about to end. I saw people give everything they had to oily, traveling evangelists in tent revivals, and others just max out their credit cards on nonsense, thinking they'd never have to pay the bills.


All the while, they pray for destruction of their perceived enemies, civilization and the earth as we know it.



They don't understand the concept of balance...they hold their protection in high regard, and they have to keep moving toward it or they fear they will slip back and fall away into addiction or similar conditions. As such, they fear one rotten apple will break the whole barrel, so they err on the side of caution (again) and try to maintain a strictly indoctrinated regime so as to make sure that THEY, at least, live on.


You must have known my mother!


Ultimately, they WILL be disappointed to see mankind succeed and evolve without the intervention of their returning savior.




The first mistake in reading the Bible, is taking it literally. It's not the stories themselves, but the thoughts and concepts they provoke within the mind as we reflect on them. That's why we're encouraged to read again and again.


I understand that not all people of faith are only " doom and gloom." Not all biblical scholars act like "holier than thou, fire and brimstone" threatening fear mongers. I'm just venting to a certain group, who's philosophy I find dangerous.



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 09:21 AM
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reply to post by sparksgordon
 


I made a similar thread about this for the political section. That's a whole different level I think with the polarization in this country and how everything even religion is now political. So I hope people see this and calm down.

Even though I am agnostic I stand with my christian friends when they are attacked. I even go to church sometimes! I believe everyone has the right to believe what they want. To me most religions aren't that different and I will never understand the bitterness and the attacks people that worship the SAME God throw at each other. It's really all fights about traditions or rules not the true message of the Bible. (which two of the biggest religions in the world use.)

I think that tops at around 3 Billion people.
edit on 2-8-2012 by jjf3rd77 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 10:50 AM
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reply to post by Klassified
 


It doesn't matter whether you are a Christian, Jew, atheist, Pastarafarian or whatever your creed: if you say things like "science has become just as much a religion as any other faith on the earth", you don't know what you're talking about. But of course you are more than welcome to prove me wrong by demonstrating exactly how two mutually exclusive philosophies are in fact synonymous.
edit on 2-8-2012 by john_bmth because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 12:32 PM
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reply to post by Prezbo369
 


So you violently agree with my description of what would be a superior analysis of your position? I'm glad I could clear that up for you.

I think in your diatribe you said that you don't believe in either spirits or souls. Correct? Then your belief system rejects the idea of a "person" being being defined as flesh, soul, and spirit? Or is that you believe that a person has all three of these but that they are not eternal? Or you believe that they cannot be separated (which I think devolves to the former after death)?

Let's say that you believe in flesh only. In that case, you're really just an animal. Sure, you have a few traits that might distinguish you, for instance being self aware. But aside from your ability to use simple tools and stand upright, you're basically a better ape. I assume you would have no problem if a superior ape-like creature to yourself came along and wiped your kind off the map - that's just the way of things. Further, if you aren't taking eat, drink and be merry to the very extremes I would have to call you an irrational ape since maximizing eating, drinking, and merriment with some complex set of tradeoffs is really all you have.

Let's say you believe in flesh, soul, and spirit but not absent physical life for the flesh - when the flesh goes, all three go. One then has to wonder about the purpose of the soul and spirit then. In fact, this is such a compelling question, it should be occupying you and your fellow believers for the rest of their time on earth. If that's your belief, then how to you disambiguate conflicts between those three? Do you have a manual or a creed that you've posted on your walls? Or do you just make it up as you go along? Who or what is the Captain of you soul? Do all the people who believe this need to agree on which controls what?

So, which is it?



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 05:06 PM
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Originally posted by john_bmth
reply to post by Klassified
 


It doesn't matter whether you are a Christian, Jew, atheist, Pastarafarian or whatever your creed: if you say things like "science has become just as much a religion as any other faith on the earth", you don't know what you're talking about. But of course you are more than welcome to prove me wrong by demonstrating exactly how two mutually exclusive philosophies are in fact synonymous.
edit on 2-8-2012 by john_bmth because: (no reason given)


First off, they aren't entirely mutually exclusive at all. The intersection of belief is actually much greater than the disagreement. While we violently disagree about the origins of the cosmos and life, much of the rest of science is perfectly acceptable to most religious people. Often times scientists will overreach trying to tie all conclusions to their conclusions about origins but there's not much mileage in that.

However, in terms of religion, I would say science demonstrates the following.

1) It bases it's logical conclusions on sets of assumptions. (So does religion.) These assumptions are typically vetted by an group of people who have been in the field a long time and generally agree on the reasonableness of the assumptions, the veracity of the logic, and many times, on the conclusions themselves.
2) Science is a club and it has people supporting various strands of thinking. (Same with religion.) Nowhere was this more true than in the debates about wave-particle duality in the early 1900's. Quantum theorists were considered crackpots for many years and defunding was encouraged by their detractors. The funding wars rage today - who is to say that we're getting the best science? In many ways, we're getting the funded science, somewhat of a marketing effort, and somewhat of peer-reviewed technical vetting. If you think I'm stretching this, just remember what happened to the global warming fraud scientists. I'm glad the system worked in their case.

So, while science is certainly a lot more in depth than most religions the organizations themselves function rather similarly. I wouldn't be quick to dismiss religious people as non-scientific cranks. There are plenty of those on both sides of the aisle. (pardon the religious undertone)



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 05:15 PM
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wow ive been offline for two days and i see this thread has spiralled into petty arguments and trying to prove God exists or doesn't exists. that is not what this was about!

and when i said lets DISCUSS THINGS. i didn't mean for you to question my beliefs my friend and try to make me stumble in what i believe. i meant lets discuss where your thinking is coming from in your beliefs. not RIDDLE ME THIS BATMAN!

lol

thanks tho haha



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 05:39 PM
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reply to post by sparksgordon
 

Dear sparksgordon,

wow ive been offline for two days and i see this thread has spiralled into petty arguments and trying to prove God exists or doesn't exists. that is not what this was about!

That's why I gave up on this thread.

Perhaps by starting from mutually contradictory positions, the thread was eventually doomed. Maybe a thread with the premise "Let's discuss ancient gods who sprang from the Sumerian." Or, 'Views on Wicca, witchcraft, spells and elixirs." Or, "Developments in Christianity since the Nicene Creed." Those would have provided a roughly congenial group with a common base to work from. But this is probably not working out as you had intended.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 06:39 PM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Completely agree. i still find it interesting. that other people have posted beliefs up stranger that Christianity but people dont blink twice and them.



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 08:07 PM
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reply to post by sparksgordon
 


Hey OP - let me start your next thread for you...

"O.K. everyone. We're going to talk about the most contentious topic on earth - belief systems. However, I want everyone to be respectful even if their belief system says you are monkey poop and they are your God. Also, if you want them to define anything the say, don't ask them to because that might cause them to stop participating. We just want to hear an endless stream of incomplete thoughts, baseless ideas, accusations, and bad descriptions of science, history, and religion..."



posted on Aug, 2 2012 @ 08:24 PM
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reply to post by BSTStar
 

A little harsh, but I can see your point. Shall we credit him with a decent first try, and hope for better next time?

It is tough, though, when you have to first establish whether there is a God, and there is trench warfare over even that premise.

My guess is that a Christian thread would have to start with the basic premise of the historicity of the Bible and Jesus, but both of those would be attacked mercilessly on ATS. Is our OP searching for Utopia?



posted on Aug, 3 2012 @ 08:26 AM
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Originally posted by charles1952
reply to post by BSTStar
 

A little harsh, but I can see your point. Shall we credit him with a decent first try, and hope for better next time?

It is tough, though, when you have to first establish whether there is a God, and there is trench warfare over even that premise.

My guess is that a Christian thread would have to start with the basic premise of the historicity of the Bible and Jesus, but both of those would be attacked mercilessly on ATS. Is our OP searching for Utopia?


It is funny though, I use sarcasm and we view it as harsh. Oh no, we wouldn't want to offend the sensitive geniuses railing against the idea of a God running the universe. My God, we might cause a moment of self reflection in them!

In the story of Lazarus and the rich man, the rich man (now dead physically) is staring up from a place of torment pleading with Abraham to send Lazarus to his brothers to warn them about eternal damnation. Abraham just tells him, "They have Moses and the prophets and they didn't believe them and they won't believe Lazarus either. Tough luck buddy." Interesting how fast people will become evangelists once they are in hell.

Anyway, I take from that lesson that a careful exegetical presentation of all things Christianity to a pack of haters isn't going to get the job done. They're enjoying their lifestyles and anything that disrupts the idea that they may be in mortal jeopardy is too disturbing to contemplate. Thus, the fingers in the ears approach. They don't want to hear that what they are calling good God finds abominable.

The Apostle Paul knew all too well what arguing with people would be like. That's why when he went to Mars Hill in Greece he used a bit of razor sharp wit and then kept it very simple for them. If they didn't believe, they weren't part of "the called." It was that easy and he didn't lose any sleep over it.

But the best guy was the one who essentially said to me, "Look buddy, I bow to no one. blah, blah, blah" What a hilarious little bit of cyber bravado. If God so much as looked at him he'd be losing bowel control.



posted on Aug, 3 2012 @ 09:34 AM
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reply to post by BSTStar
 


Very telling.



In the story of Lazarus and the rich man, the rich man (now dead physically) is staring up from a place of torment pleading with Abraham to send Lazarus to his brothers to warn them about eternal damnation. Abraham just tells him, "They have Moses and the prophets and they didn't believe them and they won't believe Lazarus either. Tough luck buddy." Interesting how fast people will become evangelists once they are in hell.


"Interesting how fast people will become evangelists once they are in hell."

First it's a story , then you're claiming it's real ? that's one of the main problems with discussing religion with fanatics.



posted on Aug, 3 2012 @ 12:22 PM
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Originally posted by Hopeforeveryone
reply to post by BSTStar
 


Very telling.



In the story of Lazarus and the rich man, the rich man (now dead physically) is staring up from a place of torment pleading with Abraham to send Lazarus to his brothers to warn them about eternal damnation. Abraham just tells him, "They have Moses and the prophets and they didn't believe them and they won't believe Lazarus either. Tough luck buddy." Interesting how fast people will become evangelists once they are in hell.


"Interesting how fast people will become evangelists once they are in hell."

First it's a story , then you're claiming it's real ? that's one of the main problems with discussing religion with fanatics.


Who ever said a 'story' couldn't be factual? I happen to believe that this actually occurred.

But on to other things, define 'fanatic' for me. Or do you just mean people who are willing to argue to support their positions?

Let me help you - just refute eternal life and this all goes away because without it, the story of Lazarus is a fictional story. I can respect that position even if I disagree with it. No need for hurling verbal grenades.



posted on Aug, 3 2012 @ 12:34 PM
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reply to post by BSTStar
 


Eternal life, well, if it was science then as you've claimed it exists then the burden of proof would be on you. As i've never met anyone who's come back from the dead i find the notion doubtfull. What's the mechanics involved, where's the physical explanation for this phenomena of surviving death ?

In Christianity people die and go to heaven, hell or wherever but in other religions people are re-incarnated, is there any particular reason why I should believe Christianity over Hinduism ?

Thing is i don't feel a need to "know" these things, there'll be plenty of time to find out after I'm deceased. I don't need to have a belief in mythical characters punishing me after death to lead a good life, a sense of empathy and having a heart stops me from inflicting cruelty on my fellow humans. I even give to charity on occasion.

As for the fanatical thing - all your posts have been on the borderline of aggressive, such passion in your posts must indicate a level of belief that I have difficulty in relating to. But hey, if it works for you fine, just don't tell me all about it or belittle what other people believe in.
edit on 3-8-2012 by Hopeforeveryone because: (no reason given)






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