1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Do you believe in god or a divine entity?

Discussion in 'Speaker's Corner' started by Gabbatek, 21 Oct 2016.

  1. robgmun

    Capodecina

    Joined: 30 Apr 2006

    Posts: 16,216

    Location: London

    Actually it does say in the Koran to free slaves, and although it's been a while i believe Jesus said something along the same lines
     
  2. enkoda

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 3 Mar 2010

    Posts: 1,853

    Location: Hants, UK

    It says a lot in the Quran, but that's still on a par with the Bible, the Book of Mormon or Scientology.

    Jesus may well have wanted slaves freed, but he did nothing about it and condoned slavery, including punishing slaves.
     
  3. DavidMarq

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 2 Jul 2004

    Posts: 1,535

    Location: Stevenage

    Are you suggesting God is compactified into a Calabi-Yau manifold?

    How does being a 7th dimensional being allow one to see all of time and space in one go?
     
  4. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 73,599

    The Quran has a rather complex take on the slavery aspect both directly and in-directly including breaking it down into different areas for believers, non-believers and also Muslims and Christians. Its also an area that many Muslims seem to gloss over some quite strong messages - I can't remember exactly how it goes off the top of my head but there are a few references to the oppression of people in the slavery context in very contextual circumstances being basically the worst things a Muslim can do to such a degree that the Prophet (I think it was) would testify against those guilty of it on the day of resurrection? (largely applying when those being oppressed are either another Muslim or Christians living within a certain set of rules).
     
  5. enkoda

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 3 Mar 2010

    Posts: 1,853

    Location: Hants, UK

    In other words, Allah wasn't too concerned with slavery either. He could've just commanded "don't enslave another human being", but didn't (I'm happy to proven wrong though). Why? Because slavery was beneficial to the economy of the time. All of this just backs up the point about their scripture being concocted by men and following the morally acceptable standards of the day.
     
  6. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 73,599

    I have no idea what the overall stance actually is TBH I just happen to know there are some quite stern warnings in regard to specific circumstances and that in general its quite complex.
     
  7. Cromulent

    Mobster

    Joined: 1 Nov 2007

    Posts: 3,993

    Location: England

    Going back to the original question of the thread. I have to admit to being confused. I've been an atheist all my life and (apart from my sister who is catholic) everyone else in my family is an atheist as well. But I've been feeling myself inexplicably drawn towards heathenism the more I read about it. I'm not interested in "magic" or any of that rubbish. I still believe that science and maths are the best sources of information about the origins of the universe and how the universe work but there is something that I feel can't be explained by science and maths and that is the desire for belonging and the idea of tradition. Heathenism is based on tradition and belonging and it is that I want to be a part of. I'm not even sure I believe in the heathen gods so it might be better to call myself an atheist heathen (this is actually a thing believe it or not I am by no means the only person to be attracted to heathenism who doesn't believe in heathen gods).

    Yeah. Basically I just feel confused about my own beliefs. I'd love to read more on heathenism and paganism and try and understand it more so I can make a more educated decision. Even if you just look at it from a historical perspective it is a very interesting subject.
     
  8. jpod

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 16 Jun 2011

    Posts: 1,843

    Location: Cheshire

    Hmm could it be that studying heathenism and paganism are fun so do that - explore it.

    But why is it that philosophy and science .............Galileo, Issac Newton, Darwin............ is not a tradition that you would want to read about and belong too. It is just as exciting and it is well reality and what matters. If you don't find it interesting then I blame your teachers!

    Try Socrates first http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b065gv2m/genius-of-the-ancient-world-2-socrates

    Or this https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/cka/Longitude-Dava-Sobel/0007214227

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/cka/Magi...&qid=1487704598&sr=1-1&keywords=dawkins+magic

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/Books/Is...8&qid=1487704624&sr=1-3&keywords=issac+newton

    This is really accessible and a few quid on ebay in hardback:
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Science-Hi...7704654&sr=1-1-spell&keywords=science+hostpry
     
  9. Dicehunter

    Capodecina

    Joined: 19 Feb 2007

    Posts: 11,350

    Location: Milkyway Galaxy

    People who are weak of mind are afraid that there will be nothing after we die so like a scared little child uses a light outside of his/her door at night, People make gods/god up to make themselves feel better and then create rules around their fantasy which then like a sexual disease spreads to other people and puts in place some very barbaric primitive and sick "cultures".
    The day the human race abolishes religion is the day we make the greatest leap in history.
     
  10. Cromulent

    Mobster

    Joined: 1 Nov 2007

    Posts: 3,993

    Location: England

    Oh don't get me wrong. I'm a computer scientist and my dad was a physicist / computer scientist (he is now retired). I read a lot about science but there is something that just draws me to heathenism and I can't even put my finger on why. It is a very strange feeling. I think it has to do with my beliefs regarding Europe and traditional European beliefs and acts. I just feel confused about things at the moment.
     
  11. jpod

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 16 Jun 2011

    Posts: 1,843

    Location: Cheshire

    Hi like I said study heathenism if it interests you. Pursue your interests.
     
  12. Sliver

    Capodecina

    Joined: 27 Dec 2011

    Posts: 10,826

    Location: Darlington

    Read a quote this morning that rang true with me:

    When it comes to theists, I always like to ask what do you believe and why. They seem ok with the first part but stumble on the second. I find for every theist you ask the question, define your god, you get a slightly different answer each time. This is because you cannot define the intangible, the transcendent the numinous. So this should be the end of conversation. However, pre-suppositional apologetics get around this by asserting that a god exists and everyone knows this, including atheists. Then they begin their apologetics using the bible as the source of their argument. There are two major flaws with this approach though.

    • First, saying the bible is proof of a god/s existence is a common fallacy known as circular reasoning, or sometimes referred to as, begging the question. If the bible is proof of a god then would it not follow that The Lord of the Rings is proof of Hobbits or that Harry Potter is proof of wizards?

    • Secondly, by asserting without evidence that a god/s exists and that everybody knows this including atheists, is basically saying that atheists are liars. This is demonstrably false as atheism is a single position on a single claim. Theists claim there is a god/s and atheists do not accept the claim due to insufficient evidence. What can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.
    For me, there is little to no need to debunk religion. Instead just deal with the core point. Does a god/s exist? If theists can not demonstrate that there is a god then there is no need to delve into religions and their holy books. A universe without a god/s existence makes any theistic religion impotent.

    One claim I often hear repeatedly by theists regards creation. Many theists will tell you that god is omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent. They also assert that god created everything, the Universe, Earth life etc. Many of them also assert that god has always existed. So I'll take these points one by one and offer my rebuke to them.

    • God created everything. How do you know is my response. Where is your evidence for this? If true then who created god? Now we are into the infinite regress, turtles all the way down. The main problem here is that for a god to create the Universe, he would need to be a highly complex being and we know from observation that everything in the Universe that has order, a galaxy, a solar system, a planet with life, that order arose from simple beginnings. Order and complexity arise from a bottom up process and not a top down process. Think about skyhooks and cranes as described by Daniel Dennett. Daniel Dennett contrasts theories of complexity that require such miracles with those based on "cranes", structures that permit the construction of entities of greater complexity but are themselves founded solidly "on the ground" of physical science. Sky hooks however start with complexity and work down. Skyhooks are fallacious and demonstrably false. Richard Dawkins uses the example of a mountain. On one side of the mountain is a gradual slope leading to the peak, on the other side is a sheer cliff face that shoots up vertically to the peak. With respect to evolution, life started at the bottom of the gradual slope and slowly but surely, through incremental steps made it's way to the peak. Evolving one small step at a time and becoming ever more complex. This is a crane. The sky hook to this would be standing at the bottom of the cliff face on the other side of the mountain and then in a single bound jumping up and landing on the peak. This is a skyhook. Complexity therefore always arises incrementally from simple beginnings.

    • The three Omni god. Omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent. If god is all powerful would it not follow that he could do anything? So he should be able to create a rock that was so big and so heavy that even he couldn't lift it. Here lies the problem with omnipotence. If god cannot lift the rock then he is not omnipotent by definition. Also if god can not create a rock so heavy that he can not lift it then he is not omnipotent. So either way, if there is a god, we can safely say he is not omnipotent. If god is omniscient then why did he make so many mistakes in the bible. Take Genesis and Adam and Eve. An omniscient god would foresee that the talking snake would lead Eve astray and so could intervene and prevent it. But this doesn't happen. God at this point is strangely absent despite apparently being omnipresent. Then there is Noah and the great flood. God's intent to return the Earth to its pre-creation state of watery chaos by flooding the Earth because of humanity's misdeeds and then remake it using the microcosm of Noah's ark. Thus, the flood was a reversal of creation. Why the reversal? Clearly god made a mistake and was trying to correct it with a global flood. But how can this be if god is omniscient? Surely an all knowing god would be incapable of making mistakes.

    • God has always existed. This flies in the face of rational reasoned critical thinking. Theists are basically invoking infinity here and as any mathematician will tell you, when you need to invoke infinity into one of your equations, that equation is wrong. Logically, everything that begins to exist has a cause, but not an infinite god because there was no beginning so it 's fair to say that without a beginning there can be no existence.

    Ultimately, if theists could ever prove god (and some of them think they have) then I would immediately abandon my atheistic stance and become a theist. There is no empirical proof of god though, nothing. If there were proof we'd all be theists.
     
    Last edited: 23 Feb 2017
  13. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 73,599

    Question - did you walk blindly into the fallacy that everything concern god or God's has to be subject to the rules of this universe or are you intentionally trying to take that stance in an attempt to ring fence the argument?

    Even as someone extremely sceptical as to the existence of god(s) or God I've rarely read so much complete hogwash on the subject - if for the sake of argument we assumed some creator entity existed then it would seem likely they were not a being of this universe so any requirements as to complexity would be moot and as that would imply that this existence isn't "base reality" then there is nothing that means that the metaphysics and so on of this universe have any implications on the rules of whatever dimension or reality that such a "god" entity would have to exist in. Which leads me to for me an interesting point that if some kind of god like many religions believe in did exist it would mean that this isn't base reality and opens the question as to whether that being existed in base reality itself or whether there was yet another layer above that and so on i.e. that being could just be (maybe at some point not even aware itself*) that it was merely a caretaker puppet of some entity further up the chain.

    EDIT: Also makes me wonder what motivation makes you so desperate to disprove/discredit religion given the nature of the arguments you are running to as a basis for that.



    * Assuming it is even sentient and not some AI carrying out a long forgotten about experiment :p
     
    Last edited: 26 Feb 2017
  14. enkoda

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 3 Mar 2010

    Posts: 1,853

    Location: Hants, UK

    The problem here is you've had to use the words 'assume', 'likely', 'imply' & 'if' to back up your theory on how it all came about: your theory, without evidence, carries no more weight than any other explanation, and can be dismissed until you meet the burden of proof. All you've done is wildly speculate on trans-dimensional entities existing in and out of existence, which is just pure fantasy. A god that resides outside of existence or reality simply doesn't exist and isn't real.
     
  15. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 73,599

    You make the mistake of thinking I'm putting it forward as the theory - I merely demonstrate the limits of our own understanding with a potential explanation (of many - none of which might be correct).

    However if you want proof - lets assume that there is nothing outside of our existence - hence self awareness can only be a complex construction within the rules of our universe - with our current rate of tech/science progress within 100 years we could synthesize a sentient entity and the VR to go with it to enclose it in a universe of our own making and it would be none the wiser to our reality.
     
  16. jimjamuk

    Mobster

    Joined: 30 Nov 2007

    Posts: 2,984

    Location: Bristol, UK

    Was a typical CoE person early life but after my lad passed away - nope. I actually had someone tell me it was a test for me and my wife a few years later. The test was not punching their lights out when I heard it.

    I've said it on here before should I appear up in cloud cookoo land after I'm done here and theres some almighty thing/being then they are going to get the punch. Not just for my stuff but all the stuff going on in the world every day whilst those living the good life preach on. My view is if something exists then they are doing a pretty bad job of it and need some comeback
     
  17. enkoda

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 3 Mar 2010

    Posts: 1,853

    Location: Hants, UK

    Speculating on what science can achieve in 100 years time doesn't provide us with proof of anything, and offers no valid explanation for the plethora of gods that have been worshipped over the centuries. It may well be possible in the future to create god-like beings and VR universes, we may even invent time travel - but that still wouldn't prove the existence of Emmett 'Doc' Brown from "Back To The Future" or the Time Traveller from H.G. Wells' "The Time Machine".

    Those gods were created by men who couldn't explain where the sun went at night, or why storms happened, or how earthquakes occurred, etc, etc. Statements such as 'if some kind of god existed...' carry no more validity than 'if unicorns existed...' or 'if the flying spaghetti monster existed...'.

    Unless you have evidence to show us how gods operate around the rules of our universe, then how can you dismiss any other position as a fallacy? Claiming that a god isn't bound by nature's rules is just as bad as saying that a god exists - you have no proof.

    Religion needs to be discredited so it can just fade away.
    I either accept what science can prove is true (to the best of our knowledge), or I accept, on faith alone, stories about supernatural entities and miracles coupled with threats of eternal damnation if I don't.
    I prefer to live and act in a manner that doesn't cause harm to society because it is the right thing to do, a reward of everlasting life shouldn't be needed.
     
  18. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 73,599

    The thing is if self awareness is entirely something that we could build with a complex construction of matter within this universe then eventually with science we could build it and likewise with science we can build a virtual environment to trap its sensory input within - I'm not talking about creating a god-like being I'm talking about the fact that the potential we can create something like that (a being within their own universe) has implications on whether we reside in "base reality" or not and scientifically on balance of probability it could mean this universe isn't base reality and if so then all bets when it comes to god are off - in both the potential for existence and the nature of "god" (an often overlooked point). The god in this scenario would be ourselves.

    Interestingly the other possibility is that self awareness isn't purely a complex construction of matter within this universe which opens up a whole different story.

    Claiming god(s) is/are bound by natures rules is just as absurd as claiming god exists - we know relatively speaking so little about our universe and how it works let alone anything that might or might not be beyond it - you certainly can't authoritatively negate the possibility of god(s) based on nature's rules so the position is a fallacy just as much, but potentially more so, than many of the other positions for and against god(s).

    Personally I prefer to keep an open mind, I'm certainly not going to dedicate my life to something on faith alone at the same time we know so little it would be arrogant at best to deny any possibility whatsoever.
     
  19. sigma

    Capodecina

    Joined: 13 Nov 2006

    Posts: 18,534

    You post is pretty much how I see things apart from the part I quoted.

    Why can't the Gods that people refer to be someone/something else in another universe who have created this one?
     
  20. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 13 Oct 2006

    Posts: 73,599

    I'm not ruling that out - I'm saying if there was something to the first part then it opens up a range of potentials for the nature and existence of "god" - I'm not going to try and narrow it down to any specific possibility.