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The Cleveland Freethinkers Message Board The Cleveland Freethinkers Discussion Forum General Discussions › Have you ever had a "doubting atheist" moment?

Have you ever had a "doubting atheist" moment?

Mark R. O.
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 96
By the way, I do believe that a belief in God is logical.

I am not sure what you mean. Do you mean:

  • It is understandable why people believe in a god;
  • It is a logical necessity for people to believe in a god; or
  • Belief in a god is a logical thing to do.

    Or do you mean something else?

    I agree with the first, disagree with the second and utterly refute the last. The idea of a "first cause" is a logical absurdity and the idea of a "super intelligence" ordering the universe goes against the evidence. What sort of god is it that could possibly be logical?

    Please explain what you mean and why you have that view. Thanks.

  • Rafiq:

    I mean all three. We agree on the first. The second and third
    can be combined. Some people need a belief system that is
    outside of themselves. For these people, God maybe the only
    thing standing between them and death or worse, despair.
    For this group of people a belief in God is logical by its necessity.

    I do not understand how the idea of a first cause is a logical
    absurdity. Do you believe that there can be effect without

    M. Orel
    user 34197652
    Middlefield, OH
    Post #: 4
    Personally, I think it's the fact that these people did what
    they did for purely secular, human reasons. Atheists are
    people, people are human, human's are flawed. Atheists
    are just as screwed up as anyone else.
    M. Orel

    I know you have been around long enough to know what I meant about dogma so I am not going to play that game.

    As for atheists being human?
    Exactly my point!

    Where did you not understand me?
    I do not think you understood my comment and if so I have no idea why?
    user 34197652
    Middlefield, OH
    Post #: 5
    My point was that there was no difference, from all the other wars which had religious people all throughout and by the way out numbered the atheists by exceeding numbers of kills all together.

    Now do you see my point?

    It doesn't matter what view of gods they held unless it was by their view that they killed.
    They were all humans being human with their screwed up wars.
    Mark T.
    user 4783078
    Cleveland, OH
    Post #: 568
    I agree with you that we have lots of data. And yet we know,
    virtually nothing about the universe, the nature of the universe
    or even our own realities. Until you can quantify at least one of
    these things, the possibility of God's existence is an explanation
    as it is not.

    This is descending into the absurd.

    Mark-O., those things are quantified wonderfully in a myriad of resources on cosmology, astronomy, physics, chemistry, biology. I suggest you delve into some of those, and keep your nose out of bad philosophy books! smile
    Mark T.
    user 4783078
    Cleveland, OH
    Post #: 569
    Mark- you were up at 8AM? :)

    It WAS a miracle! All theology must be true. laughing
    Dave H.
    Peninsula, OH
    Post #: 95
    I'm a little surprised at the sometimes equating talking about things related to dreams, ESP, etc., in the same breath as talking about gods. Dreams are real, and what they are about are still not fully understood and are being actively researched; and as has been pointed out, the possibility of things grouped under the ESP banner are at least subject to direct test and investigation.

    The other thing I'm a little surprised at is that 'atheism' is being treated here as some sort of 'belief system'; it ain't. It's just the lack of theism, at least on the surface. The words and phrases a lot of us tend to associate more with - 'critical thinking', 'intelligent skepticism', 'scientific method' etc. etc. are not automatically related to the lack of theism.

    Mark O. then goes on to make what I think are a couple of false - or at least incomplete - assumptions:
    "Since, it is generally accepted that something can not be created from nothing, we are left to ask
    what created the universe? What was the first cause. "

    Actually, it is not generally accepted that something can't be created from nothing. Empty space can - and, has - generated energy and particles, provided the positives and negatives balance. A Big Bang that creates equal amounts of matter and antimatter, for example, can do so from nothing and violates no principles of physics that we know of (though it does violate our sensibilities!).

    And insisting that there had to be 'something' before something like the Big Bang - but not also insisting on asking the question, "But where did god(s) come from?" is not consistent. The fact that we don't know, yet, exactly how this universe started doesn't automatically lead to a '...therefore god(s)' conclusion; nor does it relieve the responsibility on the person who thinks like that to not just pretend the "where did god(s) come from" question doesn't exist.

    I also disagree that a belief in an invisible imaginary friend in the sky is 'logical'. One generally needs to show how something is 'logical'; and just declaring god(s) existing is 'logical' isn't it.


    Mark T.
    user 4783078
    Cleveland, OH
    Post #: 570
    Why call it "God"? Well, why NOT call it "God" if it suits its purpose (though admittedtly, "God" is a loaded word that is still, IMO, too personified)? I could call it "Fred" for all I care. "The Force." "The Way." "Source." I like the Buddhist term "All That Is." It has less baggage.

    Is "freethinking" really "free" if one starts out with an unchangeable opinion either way?

    Not unchangeable. I'm open to any concrete evidence or airtight logic that would point to God's existence. Got any?

    Increasingly vague & nebulous "definitions" of God surely won't help... they squeeze the "almighty" right out of existence, without the atheist having to assist wink
    Rafiq M.
    Bogor, ID
    Post #: 1,055
    OK. Time for definitions and a couple of "catechisms":

    God = an intelligent being that pervades the universe, caused it to come into being, hears our thoughts and has the power to do anything, including responding to our thoughts, and rewards, punishes or forgives us in a state of consciousness that we enter after our death. Also (optional extra) communicates his desires, instructions or guidance through texts revealed to "chosen" people.

    Atheist catechism: I don't buy that crap (above). OK, then, convince me.

    Agnostic catechism: Of course I don't know, but that crap (above) solves nothing (it doesn't explain any observable phenomena) and therefore isn't worthy of consideration as a supposition, let alone a hypothesis. Before you start looking for a solution you need a problem. There simply is no problem that needs that sort of solution.

    As you rightly say, Mark T., increasingly vague "definitions" of God won't help. Let's stick with the one above so we can all agree on what it is that we don't buy. There are already perfectly good words for all there is: universe or everything. The only advantage of god is that it has only one syllable. We can't do much science using words of only one syllable, I'm afraid.
    Rafiq M.
    Bogor, ID
    Post #: 1,056
    ...the possibility of God's existence is an explanation as it is not...

    An explanation of what? It explains nothing about observable phenomena in any area of science as far as I can see. Please tell me what problem the existence of God is meant to solve? It actually seems to make things more difficult to explain and understand than easier, and even that most pious and Catholic of monks, William of Occam, had a sharp instrument to shave away such suppositions.
    A former member
    Post #: 24
    I haven't been tracking this since my last reply, I usually don't check here, will catch up I guess. Can't say I haven't had this tired old discussion 100's of times before, though.
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