The best argument for atheism

Healthy skepticism of ALL worldviews is good. Skeptical of non-belief like found in Atheism? Post your challenging questions. Responses are encouraged.
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The best argument for atheism

#1

Post by ultimate777 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:40 am

http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

I think the above website, the book it represents, and the author make the best case for atheism I have ever seen. Not that I am convinced. In the book and maybe the website he claims that there are many people who are not Christians who have feelings like Christians often base their faith on and he gives non-supernatural possibilities for them.

Why don't, instead of asking me to explain it all to you on the one hand, or ignoring it on the other hand, take it on and face it for yourself? Believe me a refutation I CONSIDER accurate, fair, and on point would be much appreciated. Maybe your faith and your curiosity are simply not enough for you to take this on. Well, let's see about that.

If the link does not work, tell me

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#2

Post by B. W. » Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:22 am

ultimate777 wrote:http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

I think the above website, the book it represents, and the author make the best case for atheism I have ever seen. Not that I am convinced. In the book and maybe the website he claims that there are many people who are not Christians who have feelings like Christians often base their faith on and he gives non-supernatural possibilities for them.

Why don't, instead of asking me to explain it all to you on the one hand, or ignoring it on the other hand, take it on and face it for yourself? Believe me a refutation I CONSIDER accurate, fair, and on point would be much appreciated. Maybe your faith and your curiosity are simply not enough for you to take this on. Well, let's see about that.

If the link does not work, tell me
Now I am not as eloquent as Jac is and he could answer far better than I can but here goes:

This article is basic materialism - all things living are composed of material, and consciousness is simply the result of material interactions. This is also based upon the Marxist materiel didactic used to subjugate a populace in order to base people solely on their worth to the state. Those that are not worth anything or a burden to the state's greater good can be eliminated because material is simply material. This articles undertones demonstrate the contempt for life atheistic materialism ultimately leads too as proven by the historical record in atheistic countries.

There is a flaw in this article and this is where Jac could explain it better than I can in this logical construct I attempted:

1-Human Brains are hardwired

2-Human consciousness is hardwired in the brain

3-Therefore all humans must think and act in mirror image of one another ( are robotic in nature)

It is the matter of consciousness that the article falls apart on. If all is crass materialism then why do we all think and reason differently. Should all be rocket scientist then if all is limited to reactions in the brain? Is the ability of intelligence merely materially based in the brain? If so, then inferior races and people could be derived and eliminated easily for the common good. Why do people all vary in intelligence, reason, thought, and personality. If personality is based solely confined to the brain, why are we not all clones of each other?

The article cannot explain human personality, what it is, how it came about, why we all think and reason and do things on differing levels. Crass materialism is limited in scope and nature and cannot, due to its nature, honestly explore the universe, write a novel, compose a musical score, explore the world of mathematics, create new inventions, take care of those in distress, perform complex task, and a host of other things.

The human spirit cannot be measured in materialism and materialism cannot explain altruistic acts of some and total depravity in another. In my opinion, this article is the weakest in the defense of its cause I have read in a long time.

y~o)
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Re: The best argument for atheism

#3

Post by born2wonder » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:52 am

B. W. wrote:
This article is basic materialism -
1-Human Brains are hardwired

2-Human consciousness is hardwired in the brain

3-Therefore all humans must think and act in mirror image of one another ( are robotic in nature)

It is the matter of consciousness that the article falls apart on. If all is crass materialism then why do we all think and reason differently. Should all be rocket scientist then if all is limited to reactions in the brain? Is the ability of intelligence merely materially based in the brain? If so, then inferior races and people could be derived and eliminated easily for the common good. Why do people all vary in intelligence, reason, thought, and personality. If personality is based solely confined to the brain, why are we not all clones of each other?

The article cannot explain human personality, what it is, how it came about, why we all think and reason and do things on differing levels. Crass materialism is limited in scope and nature and cannot, due to its nature, honestly explore the universe, write a novel, compose a musical score, explore the world of mathematics, create new inventions, take care of those in distress, perform complex task, and a host of other things.

The human spirit cannot be measured in materialism and materialism cannot explain altruistic acts of some and total depravity in another. In my opinion, this article is the weakest in the defense of its cause I have read in a long time.

y~o)
-
-
-
I have not read the article mentioned, but I wish to, if I may, comment on your response, as I am taking from your response what I think the article was saying.

On what do you base your last statement that human spirit cannot be measured......etc.? Yes, I agree we all think differently, have differing skills, abilities, thoughts, whatever, but I think it is very common knowledge that all that we are and do, is related to what our brains have stored, and how that is processed. We are not as capable of making a lot of calculations and decisions that a big computer can, but we essentially act much the same as a computer (of course the computer is acting only as it was built and programmed to do by the intelligence of human beings, and a lot of that is way beyond my understanding), in that we have programmed ourselves through all of the things that have been taken into our brain in our experiences, and those will be a bit different, or a lot different, for each individual on this earth. So when we run our brain (our computer) the output will be different based on what was input in the first place, and what formulae that we have given our brains to deal with various things (not a conscious act, as it would be in programming a mechanical/electronic computer). It is the 'crass materialism' that we all think and act differently, because we all have a bit different information to work with, and some of our components do not work as well, or the same, in one individual as they do in another.

I am assuming that the purpose of this thread, from your standpoint is to suggest that the best argument against Atheism is a belief in a supernatural, invisible entity, which in our language we call God, that does everything that man cannot explain, and also everything that man can explain.

I understand your thinking, because I was there longer than I have not been there, but rationally I see no grounds for your position at all, and correct me if I am wrong, but there is no information anywhere that will convince the masses that any supernatural entity exists. My understanding is that even the most devout clergy will state that one has to believe, rather than one actually knows that God exists.

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#4

Post by Jac3510 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:48 am

born2wonder wrote:My understanding is that even the most devout clergy will state that one has to believe, rather than one actually knows that God exists.
Then you have sadly and grossly misunderstood the matter. The existence of God has been traditionally held (and by tradition, I mean formally taught by the church in her various denominational structures for the past 1900 years) that belief in God is an article of reason, not an article of faith.

I, for one, know God exists. Allow me to quote Aquinas on the matter, here answering the question, "Is God's existence self-evident?"
  • A thing can be self-evident in either of two ways: on the one hand, self-evident in itself, though not to us; on the other, self-evident in itself, and to us. A proposition is self-evident because the predicate is included in the essence of the subject, as "Man is an animal," for animal is contained in the essence of man. If, therefore the essence of the predicate and subject be known to all, the proposition will be self-evident to all; as is clear with regard to the first principles of demonstration, the terms of which are common things that no one is ignorant of, such as being and non-being, whole and part, and such like. If, however, there are some to whom the essence of the predicate and subject is unknown, the proposition will be self-evident in itself, but not to those who do not know the meaning of the predicate and subject of the proposition. Therefore, it happens, as Boethius says (Hebdom., the title of which is: "Whether all that is, is good"), "that there are some mental concepts self-evident only to the learned, as that incorporeal substances are not in space." Therefore I say that this proposition, "God exists," of itself is self-evident, for the predicate is the same as the subject, because God is His own existence as will be hereafter shown (3, 4). Now because we do not know the essence of God, the proposition is not self-evident to us; but needs to be demonstrated by things that are more known to us, though less known in their nature — namely, by effects.
In short, to those who study, God's existence is a self-evident fact. He is not referring to something known immediately by special revelation, but a fact that reason demands must be true (e.g., "All triangles have three sides," is self-evidently true, and that by reason, not by faith). There are, however, those from whom God's existence is not self-evident, and that is due completely to their ignorance of the proper subject matter or to their willful disregard of the facts (or both).

I have not read the article yet, nor have I clicked the link. I'll check it when I get home tonight. I'm not going to waste my time wading through a very long webpage to try to construct an argument to rebutt. If BWs representation is fair, then I think he's done a fine enough job showing the silliness of such an argument. I would only add, based on his reading of the text, that any position rooted in strict physicalism is, in the end, self-refuting and therefore wrong, for what you end up doing is using reason to prove the invalidity of reason (if reason is just a byproduct of chemical interactions, which are arational, then reason itself is arationa). But if reason is invalid, then so is the reasonable proof of the invalidity of reason.

On the contrary, this provides good evidence for the supernatural. Anyone interested should look up the problem of intentionality. Put simply, molecular interactions aren't "about" anything, yet thoughts are. Therefore, if thoughts are "about" something, then the "aboutness" has to arise from something other than the chemical interactions. Final causality, of cousre, is the proper (and only) response to this, by final causality also entails theism. So the choice is simpe enough for the athest. Admit that they are arational--indeed, that reason does not exist--or submit to God's existence. To attempt to use reason to deny His existence is just . . . well . . . irrational!
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue
And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#5

Post by B. W. » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:13 pm

born2wonder wrote:...I have not read the article mentioned, but I wish to, if I may, comment on your response, as I am taking from your response what I think the article was saying.

On what do you base your last statement that human spirit cannot be measured......etc.? Yes, I agree we all think differently, have differing skills, abilities, thoughts, whatever, but I think it is very common knowledge that all that we are and do, is related to what our brains have stored, and how that is processed. We are not as capable of making a lot of calculations and decisions that a big computer can, but we essentially act much the same as a computer (of course the computer is acting only as it was built and programmed to do by the intelligence of human beings, and a lot of that is way beyond my understanding), in that we have programmed ourselves through all of the things that have been taken into our brain in our experiences, and those will be a bit different, or a lot different, for each individual on this earth. So when we run our brain (our computer) the output will be different based on what was input in the first place, and what formulae that we have given our brains to deal with various things (not a conscious act, as it would be in programming a mechanical/electronic computer). It is the 'crass materialism' that we all think and act differently, because we all have a bit different information to work with, and some of our components do not work as well, or the same, in one individual as they do in another.

I am assuming that the purpose of this thread, from your standpoint is to suggest that the best argument against Atheism is a belief in a supernatural, invisible entity, which in our language we call God, that does everything that man cannot explain, and also everything that man can explain.

I understand your thinking, because I was there longer than I have not been there, but rationally I see no grounds for your position at all, and correct me if I am wrong, but there is no information anywhere that will convince the masses that any supernatural entity exists. My understanding is that even the most devout clergy will state that one has to believe, rather than one actually knows that God exists.
Here is a copy from the articicle which by they way is a book promo...
First Four Paragrahs of Book promo

http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

For every physical characteristic that is universal to a species, there must exist genes responsible for the emergence of that particular trait. The fact, for instance, that all cats have whiskers means that somewhere within a cat's DNA, there must exist what we can informally refer to as "whisker" genes that are responsible for the emergence of that organ in the process of each individual’s development.

This same principle not only applies to physical traits but to cognitive ones as well. The fact, for example, that all cats meow would suggest that somewhere within all cats brains there must exist a specific series of neural connections that generates this specific instinct—or what we might refer to as the "meow" part of a cat’s brain. This would further imply that there must exist genes in a cat’s chromosomes that are responsible for the emergence of that site within a cat’s brain. As further evidence of the instinctual nature of a cat’s proclivity to meow, were we to take a newborn kitten away from its mother at birth and raise it by humans, it will still inevitably meow thus proving that meowing is not a learned behavior but one that is inherited, a built-in reflex.

This principle applies to all universal behaviors: from the fact that all beavers build dams, honeybees erect hexagonal shaped honeycombs, dogs bark, the warning call of any bird or, more generally, to the universal grooming, mating, nurturing, territoriality, scavenging and feeding behaviors of all species.

Within our own species, for instance, that every human culture—no matter how isolated—has communicated through a spoken language suggests that our species' linguistic abilities constitute a genetically inherited trait. Being that language represents a cognitive trait, this means there must exist very specific regions within our brains from which our linguistic abilities are generated. As we know such linguistic sites do exist in the human brain and include the Wernicke's area, Broca's area and angular gyrus. Damage incurred to any one of these language specific sites will impair some very specific part of one's ability to communicate linguistically. This clearly demonstrates that our language abilities are directly related to our inherent neurophysiological make-ups.

What if we were to now apply this same principle to the fact that every known culture from the dawn of our species has believed in some form of a spiritual reality? Wouldn't this suggest that spirituality must represent an inherent characteristic of our species, that is, a genetically inherited trait? Furthermore, wouldn't this then also suggest that our "spiritual" instincts, just like our linguistic ones, must be generated from some very specific region within the human brain? I informally refer to this site as the "God" part of the brain, a series of neural connections from which our spiritual beliefs are generated.
This is faulty logic, which Jac touched on in his post. It is evident that the writer is leading the witness i.e. begging the question. In Paragraph four he applies a switch in attempt to make basic genetic body structure apply to cognitive abilities. This is called leading the witness. No different than what a phony healing evangelist does seeking massive donations with enticing words designed to entrap the gullible.

Look at the last two paragraphs of the article's promo...
Last two Paragraphs of Book promo

http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

Here lies a revolution of the mind, a new concept which suggests that all things spiritual are nothing more than the manifestation of the way humans have been genetically "hard-wired" to perceive reality, a built-in instinct that compels us to believe in things that simply are not real—what I refer to as nature’s white lie.

"The ‘God’ Part of the Brain" offers a secular humanistic [albeit atheistic] alternative to our old religious paradigms. Herein lies a new way of perceiving ourselves, our place in the universe and ultimately what it means to be human—flawed and mortal—but with the hope of living meaningful and fulfilling existences even in light of inevitable death.
These comments fall flat. First it is based on a bait and switch approach that does injustice to the logic of logical deduction and reason. For example, if this premise is true, it means that it must be proved in the test tube. Chemicals must spontaneously interact in such manner to vary in differences in order to write a novel and another invent ice cream. As far as I know, nitroglycerin still uses about 1:1 mixture of concentrated sulfuric acid and concentrated nitric acid. Its results are predictable and the same - explosion immediate or delayed. It is not influenced by voice, but an combust if shaken vigorously. Chemical reactions are predictable. Human nature of cognitive thought and consciousness is not predictable.

For example, all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientist do not dress the same, nor are their personalities the same. If all was based on chemical reactions - all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientist should all behave the same way - clones if you will of each other. This is not true because all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientists differ from each other. Some are as introverted as a book worm, others are as extroverted as a fighter pilot on a hunting trip, others as extro-nerd-ist, and still others are boarder line crazy.

Fact is, all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientist do not think and act the same. The Apollo Thirteen mission gives ample evidence of this in Mission Control after the damaged spacecraft’s O2 scrubber failed. If all thought the same way, why did it take a team to design a workable solution instead of only one man? Why did each approach the problem a different way? If all thought the same way, Apollo Thirteen would not have made it back to earth.

This form of reason and deduction is beyond mere genetics and chemical reactions alone, or due mixing with environment, diet, and language, with the chemicals in the brain. It has to do with how One God designed human beings with a spiritual essence, a soul, and a body that work together in triunity of being.

There is no God gene in the human genome as such atheist wish and by genetic surgery hope one day to remove in order to make -- hope of living meaningful and fulfilling existences even in light of inevitable death...

So brazenly cavalier…

Have a nice day :wave:
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(by B. W. Melvin)

Old Polish Proverb:
Not my Circus....not my monkeys

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#6

Post by PaulSacramento » Thu Nov 28, 2013 7:22 am

IMO, the best argument for atheism would depend on what the atheist is denying, what type of God.
I think that of an atheist denies that there exists a being of such power that It can create the universe, then the only argument for that is because we have no proof or evidence YET that such a being exists.
That means that, at best, we can deny based on lack of evidence BUT admit that we don't know enough about the universe to state it as a fact ( sort of the black swan analogy).
If an atheist claims that the God of the bible doesn't exist, then that is a different matter.
I know a few that simply state that they do not believe that God exists because they simply have no proof ( though they may admit to some evidence but evidence doesn't = proof).

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#7

Post by ultimate777 » Thu Nov 28, 2013 11:18 am

B. W. wrote:
ultimate777 wrote:http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

I think the above website, the book it represents, and the author make the best case for atheism I have ever seen. Not that I am convinced. In the book and maybe the website he claims that there are many people who are not Christians who have feelings like Christians often base their faith on and he gives non-supernatural possibilities for them.

Why don't, instead of asking me to explain it all to you on the one hand, or ignoring it on the other hand, take it on and face it for yourself? Believe me a refutation I CONSIDER accurate, fair, and on point would be much appreciated. Maybe your faith and your curiosity are simply not enough for you to take this on. Well, let's see about that.

If the link does not work, tell me
Now I am not as eloquent as Jac is and he could answer far better than I can but here goes:

This article is basic materialism - all things living are composed of material, and consciousness is simply the result of material interactions. This is also based upon the Marxist materiel didactic used to subjugate a populace in order to base people solely on their worth to the state. Those that are not worth anything or a burden to the state's greater good can be eliminated because material is simply material. This articles undertones demonstrate the contempt for life atheistic materialism ultimately leads too as proven by the historical record in atheistic countries.

There is a flaw in this article and this is where Jac could explain it better than I can in this logical construct I attempted:

1-Human Brains are hardwired

2-Human consciousness is hardwired in the brain

3-Therefore all humans must think and act in mirror image of one another ( are robotic in nature)

It is the matter of consciousness that the article falls apart on. If all is crass materialism then why do we all think and reason differently. Should all be rocket scientist then if all is limited to reactions in the brain? Is the ability of intelligence merely materially based in the brain? If so, then inferior races and people could be derived and eliminated easily for the common good. Why do people all vary in intelligence, reason, thought, and personality. If personality is based solely confined to the brain, why are we not all clones of each other?

The article cannot explain human personality, what it is, how it came about, why we all think and reason and do things on differing levels. Crass materialism is limited in scope and nature and cannot, due to its nature, honestly explore the universe, write a novel, compose a musical score, explore the world of mathematics, create new inventions, take care of those in distress, perform complex task, and a host of other things.

The human spirit cannot be measured in materialism and materialism cannot explain altruistic acts of some and total depravity in another. In my opinion, this article is the weakest in the defense of its cause I have read in a long time.

y~o)
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-
-
I think he thinks our brains are still evolving and that some diversity better serves the species. That's why sex was invened, prior to that, every living thing was a clone of its one parent.

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#8

Post by ultimate777 » Thu Nov 28, 2013 11:39 am

B. W. wrote:
born2wonder wrote:...I have not read the article mentioned, but I wish to, if I may, comment on your response, as I am taking from your response what I think the article was saying.

On what do you base your last statement that human spirit cannot be measured......etc.? Yes, I agree we all think differently, have differing skills, abilities, thoughts, whatever, but I think it is very common knowledge that all that we are and do, is related to what our brains have stored, and how that is processed. We are not as capable of making a lot of calculations and decisions that a big computer can, but we essentially act much the same as a computer (of course the computer is acting only as it was built and programmed to do by the intelligence of human beings, and a lot of that is way beyond my understanding), in that we have programmed ourselves through all of the things that have been taken into our brain in our experiences, and those will be a bit different, or a lot different, for each individual on this earth. So when we run our brain (our computer) the output will be different based on what was input in the first place, and what formulae that we have given our brains to deal with various things (not a conscious act, as it would be in programming a mechanical/electronic computer). It is the 'crass materialism' that we all think and act differently, because we all have a bit different information to work with, and some of our components do not work as well, or the same, in one individual as they do in another.

I am assuming that the purpose of this thread, from your standpoint is to suggest that the best argument against Atheism is a belief in a supernatural, invisible entity, which in our language we call God, that does everything that man cannot explain, and also everything that man can explain.

I understand your thinking, because I was there longer than I have not been there, but rationally I see no grounds for your position at all, and correct me if I am wrong, but there is no information anywhere that will convince the masses that any supernatural entity exists. My understanding is that even the most devout clergy will state that one has to believe, rather than one actually knows that God exists.
Here is a copy from the articicle which by they way is a book promo...
First Four Paragrahs of Book promo

http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

For every physical characteristic that is universal to a species, there must exist genes responsible for the emergence of that particular trait. The fact, for instance, that all cats have whiskers means that somewhere within a cat's DNA, there must exist what we can informally refer to as "whisker" genes that are responsible for the emergence of that organ in the process of each individual’s development.

This same principle not only applies to physical traits but to cognitive ones as well. The fact, for example, that all cats meow would suggest that somewhere within all cats brains there must exist a specific series of neural connections that generates this specific instinct—or what we might refer to as the "meow" part of a cat’s brain. This would further imply that there must exist genes in a cat’s chromosomes that are responsible for the emergence of that site within a cat’s brain. As further evidence of the instinctual nature of a cat’s proclivity to meow, were we to take a newborn kitten away from its mother at birth and raise it by humans, it will still inevitably meow thus proving that meowing is not a learned behavior but one that is inherited, a built-in reflex.

This principle applies to all universal behaviors: from the fact that all beavers build dams, honeybees erect hexagonal shaped honeycombs, dogs bark, the warning call of any bird or, more generally, to the universal grooming, mating, nurturing, territoriality, scavenging and feeding behaviors of all species.

Within our own species, for instance, that every human culture—no matter how isolated—has communicated through a spoken language suggests that our species' linguistic abilities constitute a genetically inherited trait. Being that language represents a cognitive trait, this means there must exist very specific regions within our brains from which our linguistic abilities are generated. As we know such linguistic sites do exist in the human brain and include the Wernicke's area, Broca's area and angular gyrus. Damage incurred to any one of these language specific sites will impair some very specific part of one's ability to communicate linguistically. This clearly demonstrates that our language abilities are directly related to our inherent neurophysiological make-ups.

What if we were to now apply this same principle to the fact that every known culture from the dawn of our species has believed in some form of a spiritual reality? Wouldn't this suggest that spirituality must represent an inherent characteristic of our species, that is, a genetically inherited trait? Furthermore, wouldn't this then also suggest that our "spiritual" instincts, just like our linguistic ones, must be generated from some very specific region within the human brain? I informally refer to this site as the "God" part of the brain, a series of neural connections from which our spiritual beliefs are generated.
This is faulty logic, which Jac touched on in his post. It is evident that the writer is leading the witness i.e. begging the question. In Paragraph four he applies a switch in attempt to make basic genetic body structure apply to cognitive abilities. This is called leading the witness. No different than what a phony healing evangelist does seeking massive donations with enticing words designed to entrap the gullible.

Look at the last two paragraphs of the article's promo...
Last two Paragraphs of Book promo

http://www.godpart.com/book_premise.html

Here lies a revolution of the mind, a new concept which suggests that all things spiritual are nothing more than the manifestation of the way humans have been genetically "hard-wired" to perceive reality, a built-in instinct that compels us to believe in things that simply are not real—what I refer to as nature’s white lie.

"The ‘God’ Part of the Brain" offers a secular humanistic [albeit atheistic] alternative to our old religious paradigms. Herein lies a new way of perceiving ourselves, our place in the universe and ultimately what it means to be human—flawed and mortal—but with the hope of living meaningful and fulfilling existences even in light of inevitable death.
These comments fall flat. First it is based on a bait and switch approach that does injustice to the logic of logical deduction and reason. For example, if this premise is true, it means that it must be proved in the test tube. Chemicals must spontaneously interact in such manner to vary in differences in order to write a novel and another invent ice cream. As far as I know, nitroglycerin still uses about 1:1 mixture of concentrated sulfuric acid and concentrated nitric acid. Its results are predictable and the same - explosion immediate or delayed. It is not influenced by voice, but an combust if shaken vigorously. Chemical reactions are predictable. Human nature of cognitive thought and consciousness is not predictable.

For example, all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientist do not dress the same, nor are their personalities the same. If all was based on chemical reactions - all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientist should all behave the same way - clones if you will of each other. This is not true because all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientists differ from each other. Some are as introverted as a book worm, others are as extroverted as a fighter pilot on a hunting trip, others as extro-nerd-ist, and still others are boarder line crazy.

Fact is, all healthy non-injured 40 year rocket scientist do not think and act the same. The Apollo Thirteen mission gives ample evidence of this in Mission Control after the damaged spacecraft’s O2 scrubber failed. If all thought the same way, why did it take a team to design a workable solution instead of only one man? Why did each approach the problem a different way? If all thought the same way, Apollo Thirteen would not have made it back to earth.

This form of reason and deduction is beyond mere genetics and chemical reactions alone, or due mixing with environment, diet, and language, with the chemicals in the brain. It has to do with how One God designed human beings with a spiritual essence, a soul, and a body that work together in triunity of being.

There is no God gene in the human genome as such atheist wish and by genetic surgery hope one day to remove in order to make -- hope of living meaningful and fulfilling existences even in light of inevitable death...

So brazenly cavalier…

Have a nice day :wave:
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You could be absolutely right, but unfortunately I am severely challenged in understanding things that complicated, and perhaps even more challenged in articulating what I do understand.

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#9

Post by SkepticalSkeeter » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:52 pm

B. W. wrote:...the contempt for life atheistic materialism ultimately leads too as proven by the historical record in atheistic countries.
So you're saying that "contempt for life" is a characteristic of "atheistic" countries, but not for religious countries? Can you give me some examples of "atheistic countries" and some examples of their contempt for life?

Also, can you explain how the horrendous brutality of devoutly religious nations like Spain (during the Reconquista or the Colonial Era, for example), any Western European nation (during the Middle Ages, any of the Crusades, the Wars of Reformation, or the Colonial Era), the Roman Empire (at any point in its history), or Germany (during the Colonial Era as well as the First and Second World Wars) differs from the horrendous brutality of the "atheistic countries" that you mentioned?

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Re: The best argument for atheism

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Post by jlay » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:05 pm

SkepticalSkeeter wrote:
B. W. wrote:...the contempt for life atheistic materialism ultimately leads too as proven by the historical record in atheistic countries.
So you're saying that "contempt for life" is a characteristic of "atheistic" countries, but not for religious countries? Can you give me some examples of "atheistic countries" and some examples of their contempt for life?

Also, can you explain how the horrendous brutality of devoutly religious nations like Spain (during the Reconquista or the Colonial Era, for example), any Western European nation (during the Middle Ages, any of the Crusades, the Wars of Reformation, or the Colonial Era), the Roman Empire (at any point in its history), or Germany (during the Colonial Era as well as the First and Second World Wars) differs from the horrendous brutality of the "atheistic countries" that you mentioned?
Easy. We KNOW that all those groups were wrong. Yes, people and nations can be devoutly wrong.
Here is the difference. Atheistic materialism when followed to its logical conclusions leads to those atrocities. Whereas Christianity, when followed, does not. So, we can say that the atrocities of the Inquisition were wrong, and that they contradicted the tenets of the Christian faith.

Atheistic materialism: If strictly adhered to, leads to contempt for life
Christianity: If strictly adhered to leads one to see every life as having objective, temporal, as well as eternal, value.

I think the best example of atheistic materialism right now is North Korea. Want to move there?
A good case study would be the the atrocities of Pol Pot.

Any other questions?
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Re: The best argument for atheism

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Post by SkepticalSkeeter » Thu Dec 19, 2013 10:58 pm

jlay wrote:Atheistic materialism: If strictly adhered to, leads to contempt for life
How so? You're making an assertion without supporting it. What is it about the combination of atheism and materialism that you think leads directly to mass murder?
jlay wrote:Christianity: If strictly adhered to leads one to see every life as having objective, temporal, as well as eternal, value.
The same can be said of strict adherence to the tenets of secular humanism, which is a materialistic world view.
jlay wrote:I think the best example of atheistic materialism right now is North Korea. Want to move there?
You're describing state atheism within a totalitarian dictatorship. The Kim family basically replaced religion with a cult of personality that focused on themselves. Totalitarian regimes generally demonstrate contempt for human life, regardless of their stance on religion.
jlay wrote:A good case study would be the the atrocities of Pol Pot.
Please explain how you came to the conclusion that materialism was the root cause for Pol Pot's atrocities, because it seems a whole lot more complex than that to me.

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Re: The best argument for atheism

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Post by RobertEvans » Fri Dec 20, 2013 5:14 am

Hallo OP,
There is no reason to think that there would not be some sort of cognitive recognition within the brain. We are, after all, physical creatures. Why is it that people assume it will be something magical? (I will answer that in a moment). But consider that, if everything is Consciousness, (see Goswami/Hagelin) then we would expect to see it that way, as everything here within this Lower-Consciousness (physical world) is material, physical.
Thus we might think that if it rains, 'all' get wet; why would they not? Perhaps we should ask why it is that man has had this 'need' for thousands of years, to believe in this 'invisible God'. If there were 'no' benefit, surely considering we are supposed to be the most intelligent creatures on the planet, we might have worked out (if he did not exist) that it was pointless! As for assuming that God does not exist and that this is somehow proved because we have natural understandings, I think this comes down to the word "supernatural". By rights, it should be the 'atomic' and 'subatomic' world which is called such a thing; we also have "supercool" "superabundant" "supernova" etc. The idea of supernatural is false. There is God and nothing else. Period. There is Consciousness. That is it.

It amazes me that atheists think that 'natural' (whatever that means) answers, and explains everything. It does not. Natural is the thing you talk about (God). If we take it from the sarcastic comments of atheists that "God did it", we now have the ridiculous response that "Natural did it". What then is the difference? If we say God is always there and all things are 'him' and come 'from him', what then is the difference in saying Natural is always there and all things are 'that' and come 'from that'? The only difference is the first one has Intelligence, the second one has "luck and magic".

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Re: The best argument for atheism

#13

Post by PaulSacramento » Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:46 am

Humanism is basically taking Christianity, remove God from the equation, and follow the very core of it.
The problem with that is that, for a Christian, the reason to follow the moral tenets of their faith is based on there being a objective moral value dictated by a perfect being.
For the humanist, it is simply about following what one believes to be correct, in short- subjective morals.
That both can lead people to a "good place" is not the point, the point is what about when it is NOT in the individuals bets interest to be moral?

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Re: The best argument for atheism

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Post by jlay » Fri Dec 20, 2013 11:39 am

SkepticalSkeeter wrote: [How so? You're making an assertion without supporting it. What is it about the combination of atheism and materialism that you think leads directly to mass murder?
First you are building a strawman. I never said it leads direclty to mass murder. I said it leads to contempt for life. Life in the sense I am using it, is human life. And the position is that one either believes a) that human life has INTRINSIC value, or, b)that it doesn not. Position b, would therefore lead to contempt for life. While it's true I didn't unpack the arguments, I am not making a bald assertion here. Frank Turek and Norm Geisler do a fine job on this subject as well as others.

Just the act of arguing that atheistic materialism is the RIGHT philospohy implies that mankind (in this case how he thinks) actually has inherent value. Materialism at it's core teaches that our thoughts, actions, etc. are determined by impersonal, unguided forces. This view therefore has no grounds to argue such, unless it smuggles in a contradictory worldview. It's self-defeating on face value.
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Re: The best argument for atheism

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Post by SkepticalSkeeter » Sun Dec 22, 2013 3:09 pm

jlay wrote:
SkepticalSkeeter wrote: [How so? You're making an assertion without supporting it. What is it about the combination of atheism and materialism that you think leads directly to mass murder?
First you are building a strawman. I never said it leads direclty to mass murder. I said it leads to contempt for life. Life in the sense I am using it, is human life. And the position is that one either believes a) that human life has INTRINSIC value, or, b)that it doesn not. Position b, would therefore lead to contempt for life. While it's true I didn't unpack the arguments, I am not making a bald assertion here. Frank Turek and Norm Geisler do a fine job on this subject as well as others.
Strawman, my foot. You say "contempt for human life" but all your examples have been regimes that are/were guilty of mass murder. My statement wasn't much of a leap.

In any case, atheism is simply the rejection of the theistic claim. It makes no judgement whatsoever about the value of anything, apart from the proposition that god(s) exist. Materialism posits that "our reality consists entirely of physical matter that is the sole cause of every possible occurrence, including human thought, feeling, and action" (lifted from Wikipedia). Where are you getting either the idea that atheism or materialism see no intrinsic value in human life?

And why are you ignoring secular humanism, which is fully compatible with atheism and materialism, and which clearly states that human life does, in fact, have intrinsic value?
jlay wrote:Just the act of arguing that atheistic materialism is the RIGHT philospohy implies that mankind (in this case how he thinks) actually has inherent value. Materialism at it's core teaches that our thoughts, actions, etc. are determined by impersonal, unguided forces. This view therefore has no grounds to argue such, unless it smuggles in a contradictory worldview. It's self-defeating on face value.
Right. So Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot didn't value human life because state atheism (and presumably materialism) were characteristics of their regimes. Gotcha. So how do you explain the contempt for human life shown by the Christian regimes that I mentioned previously?
PaulSacramento wrote:Humanism is basically taking Christianity, remove God from the equation, and follow the very core of it.
Actually, it's not the core of Christianity, it's the core of pretty much all religion. If you take religion and trim off all the fat you're left with a set of universally accepted social norms, without which society couldn't function.
PaulSacramento wrote:The problem with that is that, for a Christian, the reason to follow the moral tenets of their faith is based on there being a objective moral value dictated by a perfect being.
Really? So without God to dictate that rape, theft, and murder are wrong you'd have killed your neighbor, raped his wife, and stolen his truck by now? I seriously doubt that. Hurting people is wrong, and unless your brain is broken you know that.
PaulSacramento wrote:For the humanist, it is simply about following what one believes to be correct, in short- subjective morals.
That both can lead people to a "good place" is not the point the point is what about when it is NOT in the individuals bets interest to be moral?
I can't speak for all atheists (we're not really an organized group and our beliefs vary widely), but personally I do my best to do the right thing, and when I've failed to do so in the past I have felt like an a#####e until I've gone back and fixed my mistake.

I have to ask though - do you really think that the average Christian is any more likely to do the right thing than the average member of any other religion or the average nonbeliever?

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