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Z Man
May 20th, 2003, 08:11 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
Your philosophy and theology are incomplete or outright false, since they cannot deal with how real humans act....
Whoa, stop right there. This is your problem. It's not about how we act or what decisions we make that constitutes our belief in God; it's about His actions and His decisions. God chose me, I didn't choose Him. He has promised eternal life to those that believe with a heart that God has changed. That means, if you truely believed at one time, you always will...

I'd suggest you try thinking about things instead of blindingly accepting what you've heard from a pulpit or read somewhere...
I'd suggest you try thinking about things instead of blindingly accepting what you've heard from a scientist or read somewhere...

Real, in a philosophical sense, means: "Existing objectively in the world regardless of subjectivity or conventions of thought or language. "

For example, the computer upon which I type this message is real.
But if you fastforward into the future, the computer will be no more. It will cease to exist. Therefor, it's not real. It's purpose will be irrelevant, for it does not exist anymore. What isn't real is not important. What is real is where we need to focus our everything; and that which is real is eternal. It will never fade away and it's purposes and will will always stand relevant...

Your definition of "truth" isn't the same as mine.
Dosn't make the Truth any less valid. The Truth is the truth, whether you define it the same way or not.

If we cannot communicate in plain English, how do you expect to convey a convincing argument?
I'm not arguing; just stating a mere fact about yourself. If you believed at one time, you can not be an atheist. If you are truely an atheist, you always were...

Z Man
May 20th, 2003, 08:14 AM
Originally posted by shima
Z Man:
>>Yup. You're finally catching on! <<

So, what is REAL according to you?
Anything that lasts forever. BTW, that includes you... ;)

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 08:24 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Whoa, stop right there. This is your problem. Not so. Your surreal theology is not my problem unless it causes you to kick down my door or commit other mayhem on my property and person...

Then it becomes our problem, and will be dealt with accordingly. :D


I'd suggest you try thinking about things...I have, that's why I'm an atheist, not a sheep.


But if you fastforward into the future, the computer will be no more. It will cease to exist. Therefor, it's not real. It is real now but will cease to exist in the future. I am not a deity that exists outside of time, all my referents are to time-bounded existence...


Dosn't make the Truth any less valid. The Truth is the truth, whether you define it the same way or not.:sigh: The issue is what you define as Truth and whether your definition is commonly held enough to carry on a rational discussion.

shima
May 20th, 2003, 08:27 AM
>>Anything that lasts forever. BTW, that includes you...<<

Nah, when I die, I die. Nothing is left other than a decomposing body.

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 08:31 AM
Euphemistically speaking, "the long dirt nap." :D

shima
May 20th, 2003, 08:34 AM
Zakath:
>>Euphemistically speaking, "the long dirt nap."<<

What strikes me about most religious people is their extreme FEAR of dying. They are extremely afraid that their existence will come to an end, and with it they think that life is meaningless UNLESS there is something out there (naturally unbound by time) that gives meaning to their lives.

Such a shame....

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 08:45 AM
I've noticed it too. Perhaps that's because their religion isn't as effective at addressing their fears as they hope. :(

I've always wondered why religionists, particularly Christians, fight in self-defense or hook their diseased or aged loved ones to life support to prolong their corporeal existence when their scriptures teach that "to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord".

Given the choice of living here or going to the Christian heaven, who in their right mind would stay here? :)

Aside from atheists, that is. :crackup:

shima
May 20th, 2003, 08:47 AM
Zakath:
>>Given the choice of living here or going to heaven, who in their right mind would stay here? <<

Yeah, you would think they would just lay down and die. Perhaps biology is stronger than they think. And is actually what evolution teaches. So, christians actually confirm evolution by NOT laying down their lives.

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 08:51 AM
Now shima, you're going to get some creationist's panties in a wad making statements like that! :angel:

shima
May 20th, 2003, 08:54 AM
Zakath:
>>Now shima, you're going to get some creationist's panties in a wad making statements like that! <<

So? Bring 'em on I'd say. If and when they have some good arguements why Creationism is valid (and quoting bible scriptures will not help, since the bible isn't "real" according to Z Man) then we can talk.

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 09:03 AM
:thumb:

Nice turn of phrase there, shima.

I wonder if anyone will take up the challenge.

(breathes deeply, refusing to hold his breath until someone does take up the challenge...)

RogerB
May 20th, 2003, 09:05 AM
Merely repeating the same argument over and over does not make it any more sensible, Z Man.

That's funny coming from you. :chuckle:

How many times can one person post "prove it"? That is, afterall, the parts and the sum of all your posts. And you find this entertaining? :bang:

RogerB
May 20th, 2003, 09:06 AM
shima, you've tumbled into the deep end of the pool and you can't swim.

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 09:07 AM
I use "prove it" not as an argument, but an interrogative statement. As in "Can you prove it?":doh:

What I find entertaining is seeing how many ways religionists can deny reality, yet still manage to function day-to-day. Well at least some of them do...

RogerB
May 20th, 2003, 09:09 AM
:vomit:

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 09:16 AM
Profound reply, Roger. Up to your usual standards of eloquence, I see. :(

Do you actually have anything substantive to contribute to a discussion with atheists or are you content to be merely an annoying presence, buzzing about like a housefly?

shima
May 20th, 2003, 09:29 AM
RogerB:
>>shima, you've tumbled into the deep end of the pool and you can't swim.<<

I can swim well enough, since I'm still here.

As far as your "arguement" is concerned: I've seen better.

RogerB
May 20th, 2003, 09:37 AM
Come on Zak and shima. You KNOW what I'm talking about. I don't even have to say it, do I?

One Eyed Jack
May 20th, 2003, 11:41 AM
Originally posted by shima
>>I think I've got it:

10. ignore truth<<

Yes, religionists tend to ignore the truth about science. They simply alter what a scientific theory states and then claim that the theory isn't true. Then they claim that, because science is "obviously" incorrect, the story described in their preferred holy text MUST be true.

Christians aren't against science. I can't speak for other religions...

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 03:33 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
Come on Zak and shima. You KNOW what I'm talking about. I don't even have to say it, do I?

If you don't have to say it, then why do you keep posting over and over and over... :chuckle:

Z Man
May 20th, 2003, 06:56 PM
Originally posted by shima
Zakath:
>>Euphemistically speaking, "the long dirt nap."<<

What strikes me about most religious people is their extreme FEAR of dying.
This is an unfair statement. I've seen just as many atheists out there who are just as scared. For the record, I'm not afraid of death, and I don't believe any Christian should be. That's one of the reason's Christ came to die for us; to defeat death so we would not be afraid of it's captivity anymore. But there are some out there that, tragically, love there life more than God. Makes you wonder if they are truely a Christian....

They are extremely afraid that their existence will come to an end,
Speaking for myself, I'm not afraid of a non-existence after death; I just find it pointless.

and with it they think that life is meaningless UNLESS there is something out there (naturally unbound by time) that gives meaning to their lives.
Atheists strip away all of lifes meaning and hope from it's very core, leaving nothing but an empty, useless, pointless, irrelevant life that leads to nothing. To say that we die and that's it means that no one is real. All those that have lived and passed away, their lives are irrelavant; and so is ours. We will cease to exist, therefor meaning and purpose ceases to exist. Our efforts to help humanity mean nothing if they all cease to exist anyways. Our laws are pointless; who do we have to answer to if we die and that's it? There should not be any problem with me wasting some guy if he was going to die anyways. I would be doing him a favor.. No purpose; no morals. No morals; no life.

Such a shame....
It really is a shame, what atheists do. You guys are like vampires who enjoy nothing more than to suck the very existence and meaning and hope out of life, leaving a cold empty, pointless existence for us to bear... blah... :(

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 07:06 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
This is an unfair statement. I've seen just as many atheists out there who are just as scared. But you Christians are supposed to have a "better way". I've stood at too many bedsides as Christians slip into death sobbing and fighting to believe that they think anything good is coming...


Speaking for myself, I'm not afraid of a non-existence after death; I just find it pointless.Well, non-existence is rather pointless. But why would non-existence have a point? :confused:


Atheists strip away all of lifes meaning and hope from it's very core... No purpose; no morals. No morals; no life...It really is a shame, what atheists do. You guys are like vampires who enjoy nothing more than to suck the very existence and meaning and hope out of life, leaving a cold empty, pointless existence for us to bear...How poetic. How utterly silly. :(

I have morals, a life, a good wife and four wonderful children. Not a single one of them thanks to any religion. I do what I do because I think it is right. I work to help others, not to suck up to some deity, but because I see their intrinsic worth as fellow humans and I desire to help them. If you cannot deal with the freedom and personal responsibility humanism brings, then cling to your deity, your religious laws, and live as a thrall to your god. As for me? I will live as a free human, not a deity's slave.

Z Man
May 20th, 2003, 07:23 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
As for me? I will live as a free human, not a deity's slave.
Rather be a deity's slave, then a slave to my self; my weaknesses; my sins; my death. You're going to wish you were a sheep when you see the freedom we get after death.... :angel:

Zakath
May 20th, 2003, 07:27 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
Rather be a deity's slave, then a slave to my self; my weaknesses; my sins; my death.
It's a free world, you choose whom you will serve. Serve yourself openly or serve a deity of your own imagining. Either way, the end result is the same... ;)


You're going to wish you were a sheep when you see the freedom we get after death... Being a slave, even to a diety, still makes one a slave.

Of course, from my point of view, your argument is moot since I have not yet been presented with any convincing evidence for the existence of anything after death...

Unless you have some convincing evidence you'd like to share... :chuckle:

Z Man
May 20th, 2003, 09:07 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
Either way, the end result is the same... ;)
Not really. I'll be going to heaven, and you'll be going to, ahem, the other place.... unless you believe. ;)

Of course, from my point of view, your argument is moot since I have not yet been presented with any convincing evidence for the existence of anything after death...

Unless you have some convincing evidence you'd like to share... :chuckle:
If I did (not that I do), it wouldn't change your view or beliefs. There are millions like you today and there were millions like you yesterday, even when Jesus was alive and doing miracles in front of them.

Mr 16:11
And when they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they did not believe.

Joh 3:12
If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

Joh 6:36
But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe.

Joh 7:5
For even His brothers did not believe in Him.

Joh 8:45
But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.

Joh 8:46
Which of you convicts Me of sin? And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me?

Joh 10:25,26
Jesus answered them, "I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father's name, they bear witness of Me. But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.

Joh 10:37, 38
If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him."

Joh 12:37
But although He had done so many signs before them, they did not believe in Him,

Zakath, and any other atheists for that matter,

I ask, what makes you think you would believe if presented with any kind of evidence of God's existence? What makes you different from those who had seen Jesus with their own eyes and those who had witnessed His miracles, yet didn't believe; even His own family, who did not believe Him?

shima
May 21st, 2003, 03:44 AM
Z man:
>>Atheists strip away all of lifes meaning and hope from it's very core, leaving nothing but an empty, useless, pointless, irrelevant life that leads to nothing. <<

Yes, christians think this and it is wrong. What atheists do is give meaning to their lives THEMSELVES. That meaning does not depend on anything other than their own preference.

>>To say that we die and that's it means that no one is real. All those that have lived and passed away, their lives are irrelavant; and so is ours. <<

Hardly. Perhaps it is meaningless TO YOU, but to me the lives of my friends matter to me. If one dies, I will grieve. If one is happy, then I'm glad. So, to me, my friends are very important in life. And the otehr way around is true as well. I matter to my friends.

When I am about to die, I will look back on my life and determine for myself if it was worth it. I want to make my friends happy, because that is what is important to me. For others, perhaps it is the acquiring of wealth, or power. That is their choise. My choise is simple: friendship, love, happyness, peace. The more people I can share that with, the better.
We will cease to

>>exist, therefor meaning and purpose ceases to exist.<<

Meaning and purpose are concepts created by your MIND.

>>Our efforts to help humanity mean nothing if they all cease to exist anyways.<<

Yes, but for the moment and the near future humanity will NOT cease to exist. As I said before, I want to share love and friendship with all those people willing to receive it. Therefore, our existence is important to me. And the attitude that it is all "meaningless" will definitely NOT help to solve any problems we might have.

>>Our laws are pointless; who do we have to answer to if we die and that's it? <<

They are not. You have to awnser to the judicial system during your life, and ofcourse also to yourself. That is called a "conscience" and looks after your PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY.

>>There should not be any problem with me wasting some guy if he was going to die anyways.<<

Yes, there would be. For one, the guy didn't like it. For another, you broke the law and will be punished. And last, your conscience will protest in horror against your action.

>>I would be doing him a favor.. No purpose; no morals. No morals; no life. <<

Ofcourse, atheists have morals just as christians do. They just have no illusions where those morals come from: their upbringing and experience.

The grand mistake christians make is thinking that without God there are no morals. That is wrong, because morals do not come from God but from yourself.

>>It really is a shame, what atheists do. You guys are like vampires who enjoy nothing more than to suck the very existence and meaning and hope out of life, leaving a cold empty, pointless existence for us to bear.<<

Nah, that is not what atheists do. Atheists simply point out that lifes meaning is one that people themselves give to it. Ofcourse, giving meaning to life means taking responsibility for your own life in trying to attain that meaning. Failure would mean that you only have yourself to blame.

Most christians are unable to face that responsibility and therefore "flee" into the secluded shelter of God. Just like kids who suddenly face a problem and cry for "mommy" to keep them safe. Due to their religion they will NEVER develop the responsibility needed to face life. In the end, they all think it is God's responsibility to give them meaning and morals and goals in life.

Let me tell you this: the illusion of God is created by your FEAR of life's problems.

RogerB
May 21st, 2003, 05:38 AM
If you don't have to say it, then why do you keep posting over and over and over...

Because you keep asking as if you don't already have all the answers. Keep seeking....

RogerB
May 21st, 2003, 05:49 AM
But you Christians are supposed to have a "better way". I've stood at too many bedsides as Christians slip into death sobbing and fighting to believe that they think anything good is coming...

Come on, Zak, I know you understand death better than that! That's your most irritating trait. You make statements with a thread of truth but you never tell the whole truth. And the only reason you get away with it is because this is a written forum.

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 06:03 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
If I did (not that I do), it wouldn't change your view or beliefs. There are millions like you today and there were millions like you yesterday, even when Jesus was alive and doing miracles in front of them. I ask, what makes you think you would believe if presented with any kind of evidence of God's existence? What makes you different from those who had seen Jesus with their own eyes and those who had witnessed His miracles, yet didn't believe; even His own family, who did not believe Him? Aside from begging the question of the veracity of you scriptural tall tales, you demonstrate an excellent example of rationalization...
Believer: Here's my evidence

Non-believer: But your so-called evidence is not believable. It's all based on philosophical word games and unreliable copies of ancient texts that no longer exist. Perhaps you could demonstrate some of the things you claim happened more than a thousand years ago here and now?

Believer: Well no I can't. But that's because I knew you wouldn't believe it anyway because people like you never do...

Non-believer: You mean there were rational individuals who wouldn't be convinced by second and third had stories even in ancient times? Fancy that... :rolleyes:

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 06:05 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Come on, Zak, I know you understand death better than that! That's your most irritating trait. You make statements with a thread of truth but you never tell the whole truth...Lots of words, little proof.

For example???

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 06:06 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Because you keep asking as if you don't already have all the answers. Keep seeking.... Then perhaps you should step aside and let someone with better apologetics skills take their shot...:rolleyes:

"Pride goeth before a fall."

RogerB
May 21st, 2003, 06:45 AM
For example???

Your posts speak for themselves.


Then perhaps you should step aside and let someone with better apologetics skills take their shot...

Oh, don't worry, someone with much better apologetics skills is already working in your life. :think:

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 06:48 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Your posts speak for themselves.I was asking if, perhaps, one of your posts would provide content suitable for discussion...

But alas, I see you appear unable do so...


Oh, don't worry, someone with much better apologetics skills is already working in your life. :think: I'm discussing things with more apologists person-to-person and on more boards than you probably realize. ;)

RogerB
May 21st, 2003, 06:58 AM
I'm discussing things with more apologists person-to-person and on more boards than you probably realize.

Cool. :up:

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 07:04 AM
Part of the "cross" I bear as an atheist. ;)

I'm a target for every Josh McDowell wannabe... But, hey, it's a living. :D

Freak
May 21st, 2003, 02:49 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
I'm a target for every Josh McDowell wannabe... But, hey, it's a living. :D

Who is McDowell?

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 02:51 PM
Look it up on Amazon.com

(Oh, I forgot, you're mad at them because of that problem with your book. :doh: )

Try a search engine if you honestly don't know...

Gerald
May 21st, 2003, 02:51 PM
Feel free to go fish, Freak:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=Josh+McDowell

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 02:53 PM
I didn't suggest google since he's upset with them because they link to smutty sites... :rolleyes:

Freak
May 21st, 2003, 02:53 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
Look it up on Amazon.com

(Oh, I forgot, you're mad at them because of that problem with your book. :doh: )

Try a search engine if you honestly don't know...

Actually, my book is available via amazon.com, target.com, barnesandnoble.com, borders.com, buyamillion.com, and a whole host of other websites....I'm quite pleased!!! Btw, you can purchase your copy, Zakath, at my website.

Zakath
May 21st, 2003, 02:54 PM
Good for you, Jay. But I wouldn't take a copy of your book if you promoed me one.

...Although this table is a bit wobbly, how many pages is it again?

Gerald
May 21st, 2003, 02:55 PM
Originally posted by Freak Btw, you can purchase your copy, Zakath, at my website.
:vomit:
:D :D :D :D :D :D

Z Man
May 21st, 2003, 03:21 PM
What's the matter guys: afraid you might learn something from Jay's book? ;)

Gerald
May 21st, 2003, 03:33 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
What's the matter guys: afraid you might learn something from Jay's book? ;)
If it was anybody else, anybody at all, I might deign to look at it...

Z Man
May 21st, 2003, 03:50 PM
Well, Jay didn't write the Bible....hehe.... :D

Gerald
May 21st, 2003, 04:02 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
Well, Jay didn't write the Bible....hehe.... :D
Bibles I got, bibles I've read...BFHD.

What I won't BUY is Freak's BULL.

Skeptic
May 22nd, 2003, 01:36 AM
I have not read but the first entry in this thread.

Anyway, ...


Originally posted by Freak
This part was so true:

Atheism also fails to adequately explain the existence of eternal, unchanging truths, for it rejects the existence of an eternal unchanging Mind. Atheism cannot offer man any eternal significance. Temporary meaning in life is insufficient, for our accomplishments die with the death of the universe -- there is no ultimate purpose in a universe void of God. My reply:

Christianity also fails to adequately explain whether there really exists anything "eternal," such as "unchanging truths," or "an eternal unchanging Mind." Christianity cannot offer man anything but an irrational hope for some kind of "eternal significance." Temporary meaning in life is insufficient, in the eyes of Christianity, even though there is no rational reason to believe in eternal absolutes. For all we REALLY know, our accomplishments do indeed die with the death of the universe, as the universe is everything, and there probably is no ultimate purpose in our universe, which is very probably void of any eternal God.

shima
May 22nd, 2003, 02:39 AM
I agree with you, Skeptic.

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 06:31 AM
Temporary meaning in life is insufficient

Not insufficient - merely insignificant when compared to eternity.


For all we REALLY know, our accomplishments do indeed die with the death of the universe, as the universe is everything, and there probably is no ultimate purpose in our universe, which is very probably void of any eternal God.

This is what you believe?! You must be suicidal. Please call someone - anyone - for help.

shima
May 22nd, 2003, 06:36 AM
>>Not insufficient - merely insignificant when compared to eternity.<<

Ofcourse, eternity doesn't exist because it is a concept of your mind.

>>This is what you believe?! You must be suicidal. Please call someone - anyone - for help.<<

Why? He's quite enjoying life as far as I can tell. Life is an experience, you might want to try it for a while instead of hiding under the wings of your God (mommy).

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 06:38 AM
Still treading, I see....

shima
May 22nd, 2003, 06:43 AM
>>Still treading, I see....<<

Yes, I'm stil here. After all, I'm enjoying this so why leave?

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 07:52 AM
She told him she'd rather fix her make-up;
than try to fix what's goin on
but the problem keeps on callin even with the cell-phone gone
She told him that she believes in livin,
bigger than she's livin now
But her world keeps spinnin backwards, and upside-down
Don't say so-long, and through a cell-phone,
Don't spend today away, cause today will soon be

Gone, like yesterday is gone,
like history is gone,
just try and prove me wrong,
and pretend like you're immortal.

She said, He said live like no tomorrow;
every day we borrow, brings us one step closer
to the edge in a fantasy where's your treasure?
who's your hope? forget the world, and lose your soul
She pretends like she pretends like she's immortal,
Don't say so-long, you're not the far gone,
this could be your big chance to make-up,
today will soon be

Gone, like yesterday is gone
like history is gone,
the world keeps spinnin on
, you're going, going, gone,
like summer break is gone,
like saturday is gone,
just try and prove me wrong, you pretend like you're immortal
(you're immortal) you're immortal (you're immortal) ha-ah

we are not infinite we are not permanent nothing's immediate
we're so comforted in our accomplishments look at our decadence

gone, (gone) like Frank Sinatra, (gone)
like Elvis and his mom (gone)
like Al Pachino's cash, (gone)
nothing lasts in this life; (gone)
My high school dreams are gone (gone)
My childhood sweets are gone (gone)
Life is a day that doesn't last (gone)
for long (gone)
Life is more than money (gone)
Time was never money (gone)
Time was never cash (gone)
Life is still more than girls (gone)
Life is more than hundred-dollar bills (gone)
and little tom fills (gone)
Life is more than fame (gone),
and rock and roll (gone),
and films (gone)
all the riches of the kings and the pinwheels (gone)

we've got information in the information age,
but do we know what life is?
outside of our convenient Lexus cages?
She said, He said live like no tomorrow,
every moment that we borrow,
brings us closer to the God who's not short on cash

Hey Bono, I'm glad you asked,
Life is still worth living, Life is still worth living

shima
May 22nd, 2003, 08:25 AM
Yes, Bono is Catholic. So? I find the bible unbelievable, and atheism makes a LOT more sense to me.

Z Man
May 22nd, 2003, 08:27 AM
I typed in "atheist Madalyn Murray O'Hair" in Yahoo search and a list of websites came up about her that describe her life as depressing and void. I particularly find this article interesting. This profound and famous leader of atheism, persay, conjured up a vacuum so deep in her soul by rejecting God out of her life that it made her miserable and depressed. Life without God is a life without love; and that just goes against all human nature. That's not the way it's meant to be......


The Deepest Cry Of The Human Heart

In 1963, the United States Supreme Court outlawed prayer in America's public schools. One of the plaintiffs in that case was America's best-known and most visible atheist, Madalyn Murray O'Hair. Over the years, she was a vocal proponent of atheism and an aggressive campaigner against religion in public life. Then one day she vanished, leaving her sports car in an airport parking lot and $500,000. missing from the American Atheists Association bank account. Her disappearance still remains an unsolved mystery. The Internal Revenue Service seized Mrs. O'Hair's home to pay her creditors and some back taxes. One of the items at auction were her diaries. And one entry said,

"The whole idiotic hopelessness of human relations descends upon me. Tonight, I cried and cried, but even then feeling nothing." - Madalyn Murray O'Hair

I was really struck by four words that Madalyn Murray O'Hair reportedly wrote at least half a dozen times over the years,

"Somebody, somewhere, love me." - Madalyn Murray O'Hair

That cry for love in Mrs. O'Hair's diary touches something inside of me. In a way, her cry is the cry of every human heart. "Somebody, somewhere, love me."
Sad; it truely is.... :(

shima
May 22nd, 2003, 08:55 AM
>>Life without God is a life without love; <<

Absolute NONSENSE. Love is an emotion generated by people, not given to us by some imaginable sky faery.

I'm sorry to hear she was miserable and depressed. If she was unloved in all her life, I can imagine she was feeling depressed. But it has nothing to do with being an atheist. I know plenty of atheists who enjoy life, love and care about people, and have good friendships with people. I, for one.

Skeptic
May 22nd, 2003, 09:13 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
This is what you believe?! You must be suicidal. Please call someone - anyone - for help. I don't need the Bible or a mythical God to give me purpose. I find purpose in my life, as does everyone. But, this purpose is not one that is absolute for all eternity. My purposes have changed during the course of my life, and I'm sure they will continue to do so. I also find meaning in my life. But, I find no rational reason to believe in some mythical ultimate eternal meaning.

Even for Christians (though many will not admit it), the things that make most people happy have nothing to do with belief in ultimate purposes.

Z Man
May 22nd, 2003, 09:28 AM
Originally posted by shima
>>Life without God is a life without love; <<

Absolute NONSENSE. Love is an emotion generated by people, not given to us by some imaginable sky faery.

I'm sorry to hear she was miserable and depressed. If she was unloved in all her life, I can imagine she was feeling depressed. But it has nothing to do with being an atheist. I know plenty of atheists who enjoy life, love and care about people, and have good friendships with people. I, for one.
Shima,

You may do a good job of showing happiness or whatnot on the outside, but none us but you and God know how you feel on the inside...

Human love will never fulfill the void that exists inside every human's heart. It's just not satisfying enough because human love fails us. Only a love that is eternal and flawless and overflowing and real as God's love will ever fulfill a human's desires for absolute love.

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 09:40 AM
Every point of view has another angle
And every angle has its merit
But all comes down to faith
That's the way I see it

You can say that love is not divine and
You can say that life is not eternal
"All we have is know"
But I don't believe it

There's a God-shaped hole in all of us
And the restless soul is searching
There's a God-shaped hole in all of us
And it's a void only he can fill

Does the world seem gray with empty longing
Wearing every shade of cynical
And do you ever feel that
There is something missing?

That's my point of view...


- Plumb

Gerald
May 22nd, 2003, 09:57 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Shima,

You may do a good job of showing happiness or whatnot on the outside, but none us but you and God know how you feel on the inside...
Translation: You are not really happy, you just think you are...:chuckle:

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 11:31 AM
Translation: You are not really happy, you just think you are...

Translation of translation: I know for a fact that shima is happy.

Gerald
May 22nd, 2003, 11:41 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Translation of translation: I know for a fact that shima is happy.
BZZZZT!

Wrong, but thanks for playing!:bannana:

I don't know shima, and I certainly don't know what goes on in his head.

More to the point, I don't care...

::waits for the inevitable "Atheists are stone-hearted, callous meanies" comment...::

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 12:02 PM
::waits for the inevitable "Atheists are stone-hearted, callous meanies" comment...::

Don't hold your breath. But wait....you're an atheist! You can change the rules whenever you want!! You can probably live without breathing for hours....days....years!!! :doh:

Z Man did not claim to know whether or not shima is happy. He said it's between her and God.

Z Man
May 22nd, 2003, 12:07 PM
Shima's a she?!?!?! :doh:

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 12:08 PM
Oops! Isn't she a she?

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 12:17 PM
Even for Christians (though many will not admit it), the things that make most people happy have nothing to do with belief in ultimate purposes.

I am getting so tired of these kinds of statements. You have absolutely NO IDEA what you're talking about. You have NO IDEA what makes anyone happy. You have NO IDEA what percentage of Christians would say that their belief in God is a source of happiness. But, by golly, you posted it on tOL so it must be true. :kookoo:

Skeptic
May 22nd, 2003, 01:06 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
You have NO IDEA what makes anyone happy. Do you?


You have NO IDEA what percentage of Christians would say that their belief in God is a source of happiness. I don't recall ever giving a percentage. Anyway, it is irrelevant to my point. However, I'm sure you would hope that most people who call themselves Christians would feel their belief in God is at least one source of happiness. Many (how many? who knows!) Christians have said they were not happy until they "found the Lord."

I know enough about human psychology (based on experience and education) that happiness is a function of a combination of neurochemistry, learning history, and social factors. Belief in God (or any deity) or non-belief in God can be a source of happiness. But, except in cases that might be considered pathological, neither religious nor anti-religious beliefs are ever the only source of happiness for anyone.

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 01:18 PM
I don't recall ever giving a percentage.

You said most which assumes greater than 50%.

RogerB
May 22nd, 2003, 01:25 PM
Even for Christians (though many will not admit it), the things that make most people happy have nothing to do with belief in ultimate purposes.


Belief in God (or any deity) or non-belief in God can be a source of happiness. But, except in cases that might be considered pathological, neither religious nor anti-religious beliefs are ever the only source of happiness for anyone.

- you contradict yourself
- your non-belief makes you happy? you find happiness in nothingness?
- you know that no one has EVER been in such dire straits that the only thing they could cling to for happiness was God?

Skeptic
May 22nd, 2003, 01:58 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
- you contradict yourself How? Let me clarify. I said: "Even for Christians (though many will not admit it), the things that make most people happy have nothing to do with belief in ultimate purposes." This means that, for most people (even Christians), the main reasons for their happiness has nothing to do with belief in ultimate purposes. The main reasons have to do with positive factors relating to family, children, friends, relationships, intimacy, health, job, education, standard of living, etc. However, for the pathological few, ultimate purposes are the only reason for their happiness.


- your non-belief makes you happy? you find happiness in nothingness? No one believes in nothingness. This includes atheists and agnostics. For many atheists, their non-belief (i.e. nontheism, or non-belief in God) can be one of many sources of satisfaction and happiness. This does not mean they believe in nothing. Only dead people believe in nothing.


- you know that no one has EVER been in such dire straits that the only thing they could cling to for happiness was God? However, there are the pathological few. Many of those individuals live in psychiatric hospitals.

Gerald
May 22nd, 2003, 03:26 PM
::Waits for Sozo to leap in breathing fire at the mention of "psychiatric"..."::

shima
May 22nd, 2003, 04:44 PM
For one, I'm a he.

I think the only way to judge if you are happy is by listening to your emotions. You have to listen to them and understand what they mean.

I've mastered this some time ago, and since then I constantly listen to my emotions, although I don't follow its advice in all circumstances. Fear, for example, should be approached with caution.

Love, however, as friendship and happyness are very, very important to me. I listen to what my heart tells me and try to do the "right" thing. I feel happy. If anyone thinks I may be deceiving myself, let me tell you this: knowing how you feel inside is extremely important when dealing with people. I can read my own emotions pretty well now, and the emotions of those close to me. Their happyness is very important to me.

AS to the "god shaped hole": humaity has been filling their insatiable curiosity for ages and ages with ideas and images. The "god shaped hole" is what curiosity is about: the awnsers to life's most important questions, "Who am I", "What am I doing here" "how did I get here", "what happens to me when I die". Some cannot be awnsered, others have a wildly diverging range of possible awnsers. But most importantly, WE ARE ALL CURIOUS ABOUT THE AWNSERS.

As long as that curiosity continues, we will NEVER stop looking for the "correct" awnsers. The only problem is: there is no way to determine what awnser is the "correct" one. "faith" is an awnser according to some, but I believe it isn't mainly because WANTING something to be true often distords our interpretation of reality strong enough so that, to that person, it may appear true.

The "god shaped hole" has been filled with gods before, and will in the future be continued to be filled with gods. However, so far in history, almost all gods that once filled that hole are no longer believed in. The Greek, Roman, Norse, Celtic, Egyptian and Babylonian gods are all gone. Only a few remain, those who are very good at surviving because they have an awnser to all questions and also SCARE the believer into staying a believer.

Fear is a very powerfull but often trecherous emotion. Letting yourself be guided by fear is often not the "right" thing to do. Most of us have grown up, letting go of our parents despite our fear of the unknown. I believe that this fear is what drives people to believe in god. They fear the possible awnsers to the questions, and therefore WANT to believe in something that has the most "preferred" awnsers. After all, everyone will want to live forever. However, accepting that there will come a time when you no longer exist will set you free, releases you from fear. And THAT is ultimately why I'm an atheist. I let it go.......

RogerB
May 23rd, 2003, 05:54 AM
almost all gods that once filled that hole are no longer believed in

More profound than you know....

Z Man
May 23rd, 2003, 10:44 AM
That "god-shaped-hole" in every humans heart isn't about curiosity Shima, it's about love.

Shaun
May 23rd, 2003, 10:54 AM
Hey, one quick question Shima (man, am I good at interrupting discussions):

How do you deny the existence of objective morality?

And if you don't, then where does that objective morality come from?

Shaun
"If the universe has no meaning, we never should have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be a word without meaning." -C.S. Lewis

shima
May 23rd, 2003, 01:46 PM
>>How do you deny the existence of objective morality?<<

Simple. The definition of "Objective morality" would be one where all moral "rights" and "wrongs" depend solely on the objective standard, regardless of circumstances or the influence of society. We so far haven't found this "objective standard" but what we HAVE found is that "right" and "wrong" differ from one society to the next. IN one society cation A is considdered "right" while in another society it is considdered "wrong". There is no way to determine which (if any) is correct because we cannot measure the action against this "objective standard". I therefore conclude that morality is subjective to experience, circumstances and interpretation.

shima
May 23rd, 2003, 01:49 PM
>>That "god-shaped-hole" in every humans heart isn't about curiosity Shima, it's about love.<<

Perhaps, perhaps not. What I do know is that almost all gods who ever filled it no longer are believed in. There are only a very few who still have believers today.

What I know about love is that it doesn't depend in any way on the particaul faith of the person who is in love. Love is an emotion and as such has its origin inside the human body somewhere. Love can be compared to eating lots of chocolate, so I would conclude that love is transmitted through a chemical agent.

That doesn't make love any less mysterious, because we still don't know why certain people generate that emotion inside of us while other people don't. Then again, without the mystery, it probably wouldn't have the appeal it has now.

Z Man
May 23rd, 2003, 02:20 PM
Those people who worshipped false mythological gods back in the days were only doing what is human; searching for eternal love that can only come from the True God and Creator of all. Those religions failed because their gods were not real; thus the emptiness in their hearts were never completely filled.

I believe that the eternal love and completeness we all seek exists in the God that is spoken of in the Bible, and that Jesus preached of Him as well (not only did He preach of Him, He proved He existed by His lifestyle, death, and resurrection). My feelings and completeness and the changed knowledge of the world around me only strengthens this belief.

Shaun
May 23rd, 2003, 04:20 PM
Originally posted by shima
Simple. The definition of "Objective morality" would be one where all moral "rights" and "wrongs" depend solely on the objective standard, regardless of circumstances or the influence of society. We so far haven't found this "objective standard" but what we HAVE found is that "right" and "wrong" differ from one society to the next. IN one society cation A is considdered "right" while in another society it is considdered "wrong". There is no way to determine which (if any) is correct because we cannot measure the action against this "objective standard". I therefore conclude that morality is subjective to experience, circumstances and interpretation.

Uhm, mind listing examples? Last time I did my research on morality in different sociological conditions, selfishness was completely wrong in every single one. The differences you state without proof are very, very small, and vast majorities of civilizations are quite similar in comparison.

Shaun
this argument is old

Skeptic
May 23rd, 2003, 08:52 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
Those people who worshipped false mythological gods back in the days were only doing what is human; searching for eternal love that can only come from the True God and Creator of all. Those religions failed because their gods were not real; thus the emptiness in their hearts were never completely filled. I believe those people who worship the false mythological Christian God are only doing what too many humans do: searching for love in the wrong places, and basing their beliefs on their emotions and their indoctrination. But, "eternal" love can only come from the imagination. The Christian religion rationally fails because the reality of their God is based on no more evidence than the gods of other religions; thus the emptiness in their hearts is filled with emotional delusions. :kookoo:


I believe that the eternal love and completeness we all seek exists in the God that is spoken of in the Bible, and that Jesus preached of Him as well (not only did He preach of Him, He proved He existed by His lifestyle, death, and resurrection). My feelings and completeness and the changed knowledge of the world around me only strengthens this belief. I believe that the eternal love and completeness Christians seek exists only in their minds, not in the Bible. Jesus preached of God, but failed to prove He existed. Jesus died, and there is no evidence he ever resurrected. My feelings and completeness derive from my interaction with others and knowing that it is arrogant to think that humans can know such things as absolutes or "eternal purposes". The evidence in the world around me only strengthens this belief. :thumb:

Z Man
May 24th, 2003, 10:39 AM
Originally posted by Skeptic
I believe those people who worship the false mythological Christian God are only doing what too many humans do: searching for love in the wrong places, and basing their beliefs on their emotions and their indoctrination. But, "eternal" love can only come from the imagination.
I may not know you as a person Skeptic, but I do know you're human and thus I know your spirit begs to differ. You so long and desire to recieve love and you search for it everywhere; whether it be in money, sucess, fame, and/or women (or men, whatever you prefer, I don't know). The point is, without love, humans cease to be. It's what drives us to do the things we do. Some people kill for money because they love their drugs; or they kill because they are in love with a person whose life is in danger. People die for their country because they love it. People pay outrageous prices at resturants and suchforth out of love without thinking twice about the price. But humans are never satisfied with love from just material things. We need something that lasts; something with a purpose; a love that is so real and true that it changes who we are. That love my friend, can only come from God. To deny otherwise will destroy a man's spirit deep inside that only they must live with, like that of the late famed atheist, Madalyn Murray O'Hair, whose diary spoke of a tragic life spent alone and in misery. Her whole life was spent denying the very thing she was searching for; an eternal love from our Heavenly Father, our Lord God Almighty, who reigns forever and ever with peace, grace, mercy, justice, and undying eternal love.

Skeptic
May 24th, 2003, 01:37 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
I may not know you as a person Skeptic, but I do know you're human and thus I know your spirit begs to differ. You so long and desire to recieve love and you search for it everywhere; whether it be in money, sucess, fame, and/or women (or men, whatever you prefer, I don't know). The point is, without love, humans cease to be. It's what drives us to do the things we do. Some people kill for money because they love their drugs; or they kill because they are in love with a person whose life is in danger. People die for their country because they love it. People pay outrageous prices at resturants and suchforth out of love without thinking twice about the price. I never said people don't want or need love in their lives.


But humans are never satisfied with love from just material things. We need something that lasts;... Sorry to disappoint you, but nothing lasts forever. And this is not a bad thing. This is the way of the universe, based on empirical evidence, as far as anyone can rationally tell. I like our universe. I am not depressed by the prospect of death. I believe being dead will feel like it felt before I was born: can't remember; no problem. There will be no "me" to remember what it was like being alive - just like before I was born. The only reason why some people, such as yourself, aspire to something that lasts is because they have been duped into believing things for which there is no evidence (i.e. the supernatural and eternal whatever) and they don't appreciate what they have NOW! Too many people live in the future, rather than the present. Don't waste your life. Love people now! Don't worry about some mythical abstract "eternal" love you might have after you die. The world would be a better place if more people focused on making the most of the present, by loving their fellow humans, as well as their small planet, now!


...something with a purpose; a love that is so real and true that it changes who we are. All love has a purpose - just not an ultimate eternal purpose. Natural love is very real and true, and often changes who we are. Supernatural love is myth.


That love my friend, can only come from God. Such a waste of time.

No evidence, other than what a book says. The human brain has the capacity to form rational and irrational emotional attachments to a vast number of things. The "love of God" is just one of many irrational emotional attachments of which humans often experience. It may feel real, but it is such a waste of time.


To deny otherwise will destroy a man's spirit deep inside that only they must live with, ... Your indoctrination has caused you to presume the existence of things (i.e. 'spirit deep inside') for which there is no empirical evidence.


...like that of the late famed atheist, Madalyn Murray O'Hair, whose diary spoke of a tragic life spent alone and in misery. There are many people, Christians and atheists alike, who experience tragedy in their lives, and who spend much of their lives alone and in misery. This is nothing new.

I am happy. But, I would rather be sad and maintain my intellectual integrity and know the truth to the best of my ability, based on reason and evidence, than be happy and live a lie, by jumping to conclusions based on irrational traditional myths, dogma, and my perceived subjective needs or feeling of "eternal" emotional fulfillment.


Her whole life was spent denying the very thing she was searching for; an eternal love from our Heavenly Father, our Lord God Almighty, who reigns forever and ever with peace, grace, mercy, justice, and undying eternal love. Please. :doh:

Z Man
May 24th, 2003, 03:10 PM
Originally posted by Skeptic
Sorry to disappoint you, but nothing lasts forever. And this is not a bad thing. This is the way of the universe, based on empirical evidence, as far as anyone can rationally tell. I like our universe. I am not depressed by the prospect of death. I believe being dead will feel like it felt before I was born: can't remember; no problem. There will be no "me" to remember what it was like being alive - just like before I was born. The only reason why some people, such as yourself, aspire to something that lasts is because they have been duped into believing things for which there is no evidence (i.e. the supernatural and eternal whatever) and they don't appreciate what they have NOW! Too many people live in the future, rather than the present. Don't waste your life. Love people now! Don't worry about some mythical abstract "eternal" love you might have after you die. The world would be a better place if more people focused on making the most of the present, by loving their fellow humans, as well as their small planet, now!
It sounds to me then that life is nothing more than a rave/orgy pleasure do-want-makes-you-happy party. But this can't be, because we have laws and moral codes. Some things we wish to do to make us happy, we can't because of laws. But why have them if life has no purpose other than to enjoy it? Whose to tell me I can't have fun with my life?

There are many people, Christians and atheists alike, who experience tragedy in their lives, and who spend much of their lives alone and in misery. This is nothing new.
But you said earlier you were happy with loving the people around you and enjoying life. So was Madalyn O'Hair; or so people thought. She had a family to love and everything was going right for her in her life as far as her beliefs and everything. But somehow, deep inside her heart, she was miserable. Her diary is a witness to the pain and sadness she went through all because she denied God's love. With all that she had the people that loved her in her life, she still cried out, "Somebody, somewhere, love me!".

I am happy.
Or so you tell everyone... But deep down inside your heart that you have hardened, and maybe you can't see it because of your own stubborness, you are running from God; rebelling with everything you've got. You are desperately searching for answers apart from Him, but human love and material things on earth will not make a person happy. Only God can make you satisfied, and Madalyn Murray found that out the hard way. I only pray you do not put yourself through the same torment.

Skeptic
May 24th, 2003, 03:56 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
It sounds to me then that life is nothing more than a rave/orgy pleasure do-want-makes-you-happy party. But this can't be, because we have laws and moral codes. Some things we wish to do to make us happy, we can't because of laws. But why have them if life has no purpose other than to enjoy it? Whose to tell me I can't have fun with my life? We have laws and moral codes, but these are determined by the cultures in which we live. We should enjoy life now, within the constraints that our laws and moral codes permit. Sometimes our laws and moral codes should be modified to ensure civil liberties or to address an issue that was not addressed before. But, these laws and moral codes are not etched in some supernatural eternal stone. Life has purposes given to use by our culture and our experiences. But there are not necessarily any ULTIMATE purposes given to us from some mythical God.


But you said earlier you were happy with loving the people around you and enjoying life. So was Madalyn O'Hair; or so people thought. She had a family to love and everything was going right for her in her life as far as her beliefs and everything. But somehow, deep inside her heart, she was miserable. Her diary is a witness to the pain and sadness she went through all because she denied God's love. With all that she had the people that loved her in her life, she still cried out, "Somebody, somewhere, love me!". Again, despite the propaganda, being a Christian does not immunize you from tragedy, loneliness, or misery. Likewise, despite the propaganda, being an atheist does not doom you to a life full of tragedy, loneliness, or misery. I'm sorry to hear about Madalyn O'Hair's life. But her atheism did not necessarily have anything to do with the tragedy, loneliness, or misery in her life.


Or so you tell everyone... But deep down inside your heart that you have hardened, and maybe you can't see it because of your own stubborness, you are running from God; rebelling with everything you've got. You are desperately searching for answers apart from Him, but human love and material things on earth will not make a person happy. Only God can make you satisfied, and Madalyn Murray found that out the hard way. I only pray you do not put yourself through the same torment. Such a narrow view of life your indoctrination has given you. Please. :kookoo:

Z Man
May 24th, 2003, 04:28 PM
Originally posted by Skeptic
We have laws and moral codes, but these are determined by the cultures in which we live. We should enjoy life now, within the constraints that our laws and moral codes permit. Sometimes our laws and moral codes should be modified to ensure civil liberties or to address an issue that was not addressed before. But, these laws and moral codes are not etched in some supernatural eternal stone. Life has purposes given to use by our culture and our experiences. But there are not necessarily any ULTIMATE purposes given to us from some mythical God.
If life's only purpose is to be enjoyed, as you say, then how can someone deny me that right to enjoy my life? If pleasure is the only purpose to life, then laws should be abandoned...

Again, despite the propaganda, being a Christian does not immunize you from tragedy, loneliness, or misery.
I never said it does. In fact, I believe being a Christian brings on my heartaches and misery just because we are aware and guilty of our sins we commit everyday. It's an ongoing battle. To not be a Christian is to know a decieving peace. But to know God is to know real peace...

But at least if tragedy or misery does happen in a Christians life, we have hope. That's something atheists lack...

Likewise, despite the propaganda, being an atheist does not doom you to a life full of tragedy, loneliness, or misery.
I'm not saying that about Atheists. Many atheists live normal, happy lives, such as Madalyn Murray O'Hair did. But deep inside your heart is where the pain hurts, and the tragedy and misery take place. We may not be able to see it on the outside, but you can definitly feel it on the inside...

I'm sorry to hear about Madalyn O'Hair's life. But her atheism did not necessarily have anything to do with the tragedy, loneliness, or misery in her life.
It had everything to do with her misery and loneliness. Why else would she state, "Somebody, somewhere, love me", even though she wasn't alone in life and had her own children that loved her? She was busy denying the love she desired her whole life, just like every other atheists do.

Zakath
May 25th, 2003, 06:59 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
If life's only purpose is to be enjoyed, as you say, then how can someone deny me that right to enjoy my life? If pleasure is the only purpose to life, then laws should be abandoned...Because to live successfully in a society with others, any claim of absolute rights must be tempered by respect for the rights of my neighbors, making those rights subjective and based upon the society in which I choose to live.

As the old saying goes, "My right to swing my fist ends where your nose begins."


But at least if tragedy or misery does happen in a Christians life, we have hope. That's something atheists lack...Hope in a delusion or self-induced imagination can also be small comfort, as many former religionists found out.


I'm not saying that about Atheists. Many atheists live normal, happy lives, such as Madalyn Murray O'Hair did.Madalyn O'Hair was a nutball and hardly representative of your average, run of the mill atheist.


But deep inside your heart is where the pain hurts, and the tragedy and misery take place. We may not be able to see it on the outside, but you can definitly feel it on the inside... Be careful looking at people like O'Hair and her ilk. As Christians are so fond of declaring after one of their own kills their children, or commits some other heinous crime, we should not judge an entire group based upon the actions of a few famous (or infamous) individuals.

I am an atheist and am very happy. I have a successful marriage (25+ years) four wonderful adult children, a profitable business, etc. Why don't you judge atheism by someone like me? :think:

Because it wouldn't fit with your preconceived ideas that all atheists must be miserable... :nono:

Z Man
May 25th, 2003, 02:19 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
Because to live successfully...
Successfully? What's the purpose in that? He who dies with the most toys still dies. What good will being successfull do when death comes knockin' on your door? Besides, not everyone in life agrees with you on being successfull; some, like Skeptic, believe life's all about pleasure and enjoying it. So who are you to say otherwise? And who is the government and lawmakers in saying we can't have fun because a few people desire to be successful? If there is no absolute authority here to make all the calls and say what is definitly right or wrong, there would be absolute choas. But thank God He does exists, and His morals are written in our hearts!

Madalyn O'Hair was a nutball and hardly representative of your average, run of the mill atheist.
Whatever!! Madalyn O'Hair was the only real atheist I've ever seen who not only talked the talked but walked the walk. She should be every atheists heroine for what she has done in reguards to discriminating religion from the public society. She is the definition of the word atheist.

Be careful looking at people like O'Hair and her ilk. As Christians are so fond of declaring after one of their own kills their children, or commits some other heinous crime, we should not judge an entire group based upon the actions of a few famous (or infamous) individuals.
This is totally different here. Comparing atheists to Madalyn O'Hair is like saying a Christian is like Christ; it's a compliment.

I am an atheist and am very happy. I have a successful marriage (25+ years) four wonderful adult children, a profitable business, etc. Why don't you judge atheism by someone like me? :think:
Zakath,
I said it before and I'll say it again; I'm not saying atheists don't live happy, prosperous lives. Well, on the outside anyways... Madalyn O'Hair had the same things; a wonderful family, profitable business and organization, a lot of support from her "supporters", etc.

It's not what you have or how you look on the outside or in the physical material world that counts; it will all fade away.. It's what and how you feel on the inside that matters. And when any human being disconnects themselves from the living, eternal love of God, they become a vaccuum of emptiness deep inside their souls. You know exactly how this feels.

Stop running Zakath, and give up. Sooner or later you'll have to face Him, whether it will be here, or on the other side....

Lion
May 25th, 2003, 05:24 PM
Zak-Take his advice…NOW! That way you won’t get pummeled in the ring by Bob.:eek:

Zakath
May 26th, 2003, 06:08 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Successfully? What's the purpose in that? He who dies with the most toys still dies. What good will being successfull do when death comes knockin' on your door? Funny, I don't recall even the Christian faith teaching anything different than that. Does your sect teach that you won't die?


Besides, not everyone in life agrees with you on being successfull; some, like Skeptic, believe life's all about pleasure and enjoying it. So who are you to say otherwise?I do not pretend to speak from any position of authority, telling others how to live their lives. (Unlike some people around here... :rolleyes: ) I am merely speaking for myself. :)


And who is the government and lawmakers in saying we can't have fun because a few people desire to be successful? If there is no absolute authority here to make all the calls and say what is definitly right or wrong, there would be absolute choas.Even governments' authority is not absolute, since they can rise and fall. However, since I choose to live in society, I must accept the rules of that society or be prepared to pay the consequences of not accepting those rules. That's life, there's no way that I've ever found around it...


But thank God He does exists, and His morals are written in our hearts!That's the point of this thread - waiting for someone to prove that your version of "God" exists.


Whatever!! Madalyn O'Hair was the only real atheist I've ever seen who not only talked the talked but walked the walk. She should be every atheists heroine for what she has done in reguards to discriminating religion from the public society. She is the definition of the word atheist.You're like one of those rabid anti-Catholics who picks some scuzzball pope from the middle ages as representative of all Catholics. Whatever floats your boat! I still think she was a fruitcake. :ha:


This is totally different here. Comparing atheists to Madalyn O'Hair is like saying a Christian is like Christ; it's a compliment.Two problems with this...

Big Difference #1 - Atheists believe that O'Hair was human, Christians believe that Christ was a deity.

Big Difference #2 - Many atheists, myself included, think O'Hair was a nutjob. Few Christians would say that about their messiah.


I said it before and I'll say it again; I'm not saying atheists don't live happy, prosperous lives. Well, on the outside anyways...It's not what you have or how you look on the outside or in the physical material world that counts; it will all fade away.. It's what and how you feel on the inside that matters... And when any human being disconnects themselves from the living, eternal love of God, they become a vaccuum of emptiness deep inside their souls. You know exactly how this feels. I am always intrigued by Christians who claim for themselves the power of the deity to "judge the hearts" of their fellow men. As nearly as I can see, that's either blashpemy or hubris of the highest order...


Stop running Zakath, and give up. Sooner or later you'll have to face Him, whether it will be here, or on the other side.... I'm not running. Haven't been for years. Been waiting here quietly and I've discovered - there's no deity there.

You'll find out the truth too, someday. :)

Zakath
May 26th, 2003, 06:08 AM
Originally posted by Lion
Zak-Take his advice…NOW! That way you won’t get pummeled in the ring by Bob.:eek:
Shall I tremble now or later??? :crackup:

shima
May 26th, 2003, 07:41 AM
>>If life's only purpose is to be enjoyed, as you say, then how can someone deny me that right to enjoy my life?<<

That is because you are NOT the only person to have that right. If you can enjoy your life without infringing on the rights of others, then by all means do. If however you have to deny the rights of other people in order to enjoy your life, then your right stops there.

shima
May 26th, 2003, 07:48 AM
Well said Zakath.

Those Christians don't seem to get it. I'm as happy on the inside as I am on the outside. And I think I know what my owm emotions feel like much better than someone I meet on the internet and only talk to through some forum. Z man, you know nothing about me personally, and therefore you cannot judge what my emotions feel like. There's one person who can: ME.

I could tell you what my emotions feel like, but somehow I doubt you would believe me.

Z Man
May 26th, 2003, 07:51 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
Funny, I don't recall even the Christian faith teaching anything different than that. Does your sect teach that you won't die?
Zakath, I know you use to be a pastor, but it must have been a long time ago, because every christian will tell you that yes, our flesh may die someday, but we will never die. Our spirit will remain forever...

Even governments' authority is not absolute, since they can rise and fall. However, since I choose to live in society,...
:crackup: I'm sorry, but this really did make me laugh where you said you choose to live in society. Haha! Where else would you live? In the woods with the animals? :ha:

...I must accept the rules of that society or be prepared to pay the consequences of not accepting those rules. That's life, there's no way that I've ever found around it...
You said, "I must accept", then you said, "there's no way around [societies rules]". This indicates that you really wish you didn't have to follow those rules. Funny, that's the same feeling throughout humanity. So how in the world do we maintain order and moral dicipline? On who's authority on making laws do we follow since human kind has a deep desire to do whatever pleases them, including the law makers? Our moral law can not come from man because of our desires to break them; they can only come from an absolute, which is God.

That's the point of this thread - waiting for someone to prove that your version of "God" exists.
I nor anyone else for that matter can ever prove to you about God's existence; that's something you'll have to find out for yourself. So stop asking. It's an in-valid question to ask Christians anyways; especially if you are asking to make them disbelieve. We've been bought already, and there's no way we're turning back. Our race has begun and we won't stop until we cross the finish line.

Big Difference #1 - Atheists believe that O'Hair was human, Christians believe that Christ was a deity.
We'll, given the fact that atheists disbelieve in any kind of deity whatsoever, what else would you believe O'Hair was? I mean, all you guys have to believe in is man; and trust me, all of us are nothing but big fruitcakes... :ha:

Big Difference #2 - Many atheists, myself included, think O'Hair was a nutjob. Few Christians would say that about their messiah.
I don't understand how you can call her a fruitcake when she was the leader of some kind of national atheists organization and she publically made happen what all atheists only dream about. Why do you belittle her for taking action in what she believed? Have you ever done anything about religion other than talk trash at debate sites, pestering Christians and others like a rash in a private area? If you are truely an atheist, you would hail Madalyn for what she has done...

I am always intrigued by Christians who claim for themselves the power of the deity to "judge the hearts" of their fellow men.
Zakath,
I'm definitly not judging your heart with the "power of the deity"; I'm judging your heart from a humans perspective. I have a heart just like you, and I know that to deny God's existence and love is to create an empty vaccuum in the heart that only brings loneliness and strife to that individual. Only God can fill that hole in your heart. You may have it filled right now with family, success, your career, and other material things; but they won't last. Then that hole will just be empty again. Then what?

You need a foundation, and that foundation would be the Rock; our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. :thumb:

Z Man
May 26th, 2003, 07:56 AM
Originally posted by shima
>>If life's only purpose is to be enjoyed, as you say, then how can someone deny me that right to enjoy my life?<<

That is because you are NOT the only person to have that right. If you can enjoy your life without infringing on the rights of others, then by all means do. If however you have to deny the rights of other people in order to enjoy your life, then your right stops there.
That's an incorrect way to look at it. There isn't one person in this world who wouldn't love to infringe on someone else's rights sometime or another in thier life; that includes the people who make the laws. But what is it that keeps us from doing that? It's not human law.....

Those Christians don't seem to get it. I'm as happy on the inside as I am on the outside. And I think I know what my owm emotions feel like much better than someone I meet on the internet and only talk to through some forum. Z man, you know nothing about me personally, and therefore you cannot judge what my emotions feel like. There's one person who can: ME.
Shima,
the reason I can judge your inside emotions is because I'm human just like you.

Zakath
May 26th, 2003, 08:36 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Zakath, I know you use to be a pastor, but it must have been a long time ago, because every christian will tell you that yes, our flesh may die someday, but we will never die. Our spirit will remain forever...I am speaking in concrete terms here, Z Man, not in supernaturalism. There's a lady down the street that claims to talk to spirits too. Should I ask her advice?


:crackup: I'm sorry, but this really did make me laugh where you said you choose to live in society. Haha! Where else would you live? In the woods with the animals? Do try to think beyond the confines of your comfy suburbanite world for at least a moment. :think:

I'm not suggesting that you do anything of the kind, but can you agree that it is still possible for people to live away from society, if they so choose?


You said, "I must accept", then you said, "there's no way around [societies rules]". This indicates that you really wish you didn't have to follow those rules. No I was speaking within the construct of social contract theory. If an individual chooses to live in a society they must accept the rules of that society or pay for violating them. It's really a simple concept, I don't see why you're trying to read so much into a brief statement. Unless, of course, you're merely disguising the fact that you've nothing concrete to add to the topic and are just maundering on...


Funny, that's the same feeling throughout humanity. So how in the world do we maintain order and moral dicipline? On who's authority on making laws do we follow since human kind has a deep desire to do whatever pleases them, including the law makers? You really do not believe that societies are self-regulating?

Perhaps you'll understand better with a simple example. Let's look at a society that should be very dependent on the "rules" or "laws" of your alleged deity, your local Christian church. When a member of that organization is caught with his/her hand in the till, stealing from the church accounts, what happens to him/her?


I nor anyone else for that matter can ever prove to you about God's existence; that's something you'll have to find out for yourself. So stop asking. Quit prattling on about absolutes you are unwilling to prove and I'll quit asking for you to prove them. :)


It's an in-valid question to ask Christians anyways; especially if you are asking to make them disbelieve. We've been bought already, and there's no way we're turning back. Our race has begun and we won't stop until we cross the finish line.Spare me the slavery and footracing metaphors. If you post here, I'll ask questions. They are not invalid, what is invalid is evading the answers...


We'll, given the fact that atheists disbelieve in any kind of deity whatsoever, what else would you believe O'Hair was? I mean, all you guys have to believe in is man; and trust me, all of us are nothing but big fruitcakes... ... sounds like a Jimmy Buffett song to me... :D


I don't understand how you can call her a fruitcake when she was... snipped kudos for O'Hair...Because I disagree with her politics (communism), her economics (socialism), and the deceit and fraudulent accounting she and her family used to take money from the American Atheists (of which I am not a member.) I have the same distaste for people like her that I do for people like Pat Robertson and Jim Bakker. :vomit:



Why do you belittle her for taking action in what she believed? Have you ever done anything about religion other than talk trash at debate sites, pestering Christians and others like a rash in a private area? If you are truely an atheist, you would hail Madalyn for what she has done...Another "No True Scotsman" fallacy. It would appear to me, laddie, that you are the one doing all the lauding of the atheist, not me. :think:


I'm definitly not judging your heart with the "power of the deity"; I'm judging your heart from a humans perspective. In that case, permit to assure you that due to your fallible human nature you've judged incorrectly.


I have a heart just like you, and I know that to deny God's existence and love is to create an empty vaccuum in the heart that only brings loneliness and strife to that individual.You are merely projecting your own lack and weakness onto others. Trust me when I tell you that it is not a very effective apologetic or evangelistic tool. :nono:

Z Man
May 26th, 2003, 11:50 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
I am speaking in concrete terms here, Z Man, not in supernaturalism. There's a lady down the street that claims to talk to spirits too. Should I ask her advice?
I don't care; do want you want to. It's a free country. (BTW, today's the day we celebrate that costly price of freedom, so Happy Memorial Day! Well, I don't know if you can call it happy... well, just have a good Memorial Day!)

Do try to think beyond the confines of your comfy suburbanite world for at least a moment. :think:

I'm not suggesting that you do anything of the kind, but can you agree that it is still possible for people to live away from society, if they so choose?
What do you mean; like a hermit?

No I was speaking within the construct of social contract theory. If an individual chooses to live in a society they must accept the rules of that society or pay for violating them. It's really a simple concept, I don't see why you're trying to read so much into a brief statement. Unless, of course, you're merely disguising the fact that you've nothing concrete to add to the topic and are just maundering on...
You said it again; "If an individual chooses to live in a society they must accept the rules...". Any individual has a desire to have fun and take their pleasures in "sin" that this world so gladly offers. Even the lawmakers do this. How can a society, who are all acceptable to failure and selfishness and pleasure for themselves ever come to an agreement on a set of laws and morality? I'll tell you why: because we all have it written in our hearts. There is an absolute that we all must answer to in our own conciousness. If God did not exists, life would be one big spring break of choatic unmorality. But because He exists, we are restrained. And it's not because man tells me to not do those things (because everyone desires to unleash and have fun and seek pleasures for themselves), but it's because God has said not to do those things. His moral code is absolute, unwaivering, and unchangeable.

You really do not believe that societies are self-regulating?
They can't be; those who try to regulate it would only be hypocrites...

Quit prattling on about absolutes you are unwilling to prove and I'll quit asking for you to prove them. :)
Blah blah blah.... :rolleyes:

Spare me the slavery and footracing metaphors. If you post here, I'll ask questions. They are not invalid, what is invalid is evading the answers...
More blah blah blah... :shut:

... sounds like a Jimmy Buffett song to me... :D
My case in point; we're all fruitcakes! :o

In that case, permit to assure you that due to your fallible human nature you've judged incorrectly.

You are merely projecting your own lack and weakness onto others. Trust me when I tell you that it is not a very effective apologetic or evangelistic tool. :nono:
It is not just my lack or weakness Zakath. You should know this; you're a psychyotrist (SP ?). Love is humanities number one weakness. It's what we all live for. I know what it's like to deprive one self of God's love because I'm human.

Put someone in solitude all by themselves for a very long time and see what happens. When a death happens to a loved one, how does it make one feel? Take love away from someone, and it "kills" them to bear; take God's love away and watch their spirit die.

Lion
May 26th, 2003, 01:23 PM
Originally posted by Lion
Zak-Take his advice…NOW! That way you won’t get pummeled in the ring by Bob.
------------------------------------------------------------------------



Zakath answered-Shall I tremble now or later???Well… with the workout program you’ve started, maybe it will be Bob that should tremble.

He has been putting on a few pounds.

Lion
May 26th, 2003, 03:12 PM
Z-Man-Great post!

Kuuntz
May 26th, 2003, 04:27 PM
Blah blah blah.... :rolleyes:

More blah blah blah... :shut:



Could you act anymore childish Z-man?


What do you mean; like a hermit?

Yes Like a hermit if thats what you wish to call it. Or like my people who still live there native am. ways, in the woods with the animals.They do not want to live by the usas laws so they took to parts of the state the gov. doesn't care about. You seem to think it can't be done, But it can. we all choose to live in society but we don't have to. It's a choice.

Z Man
May 26th, 2003, 04:46 PM
Originally posted by Kuuntz
Blah blah blah.... :rolleyes:

More blah blah blah... :shut:



Could you act anymore childish Z-man?


What do you mean; like a hermit?

Yes Like a hermit if thats what you wish to call it. Or like my people who still live there native am. ways, in the woods with the animals.They do not want to live by the usas laws so they took to parts of the state the gov. doesn't care about. You seem to think it can't be done, But it can. we all choose to live in society but we don't have to. It's a choice.
Ok Kuuntz, you're obviously new here, so I'm going to cut you some slack.... ;)

Kuuntz sees me running towards him.....:shocked: I tackle him to the floor and :box: , then I jump off my couch and elbow drop him like this, :jump: . So, how you feeling Kuuntz? .... :eek: BTW, welcome to TOL!!!

One more thing, you're post really sucks. It's lacking substance; not enough information or something......It's really skimpy. Why don't you go play with the other little kids we got running around here, a.k.a. Wickwoman, Skeptic, Mr. Bean...... :ha:

(Is this childish enough for ya? ;) :p )

Kuuntz
May 26th, 2003, 04:48 PM
Thanks Z-Man, Now I remember why I stopped being a Christian

Z Man
May 26th, 2003, 05:01 PM
If you're not a Christian now, you never were.

Kuuntz
May 26th, 2003, 05:04 PM
If thats what you want to believe go ahead, I know the truth.

Z Man
May 26th, 2003, 05:26 PM
Originally posted by Kuuntz
If thats what you want to believe go ahead, I know the truth.
Are you saying you know the truth of Christianity? But I thought you said you stopped being a Christian? So which is it? Do you believe in Christianity or not? :confused:

Kuuntz
May 26th, 2003, 05:32 PM
I don't believe anymore. Growing up I did, but then I came to my senses after spending too much time around people like you. I turned away from it and am now much happier.

Zakath
May 27th, 2003, 06:00 AM
In Z-man's little world, he does not believe that humans are capable of changing their belief systems.

I hope he never has to educate children, since education consists largely of inculcating a belief system into a young mind... ;)

RogerB
May 27th, 2003, 06:02 AM
Zakath, you claim to be here for entertainment purposes yet all you ultimately do is ask for "proof". The proof you seek isn't here. :bang:

Zakath
May 27th, 2003, 06:15 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Zakath, ... The proof you seek isn't here.

Then why do the religionists keep lining up to lay out their "proofs"?

RogerB
May 27th, 2003, 06:32 AM
You know good and well that they cannot produce proof.

Z Man
May 27th, 2003, 12:13 PM
Kuuntz,
If you use to believe, you still do; but if you truely don't believe now, you never did... There's a difference between you knowing God, and God knowing you.... Zakath doesn't understand this.

BTW Zakath, we had a great debate going on, until Elf Man here rudely interrupted...

Zakath
May 27th, 2003, 07:25 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
You know good and well that they cannot produce proof. I know that, yet they keep trying, and trying, and trying... :doh:

Zakath
May 27th, 2003, 07:26 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
BTW Zakath, we had a great debate going on, until Elf Man here rudely interrupted... Don't look at me, it wasn't my turn to put out the elf repellent! :chuckle:

RogerB
May 28th, 2003, 06:04 AM
I know that, yet they keep trying, and trying, and trying...

But YOU keep asking and asking and asking....so people feel compelled to answer with something. Ask different questions, like:

1. What was your life like before you stepped aside and let God take control?

2. How have you seen God working in your life?

3. Has God answered your prayers?

4. What happenes when you turn a problem over to God compared to what happenes when you try to deal with it on your own?

5. In what ways does God speak to you?

Gerald
May 28th, 2003, 07:12 AM
Why not start the ball rolling by showing us your answers to those questions...?

BillyBob
May 28th, 2003, 07:45 AM
Zakath;
Don't look at me, it wasn't my turn to put out the elf repellent!

Billy;
Careful guys, you might hurt his 'elf-esteem'....

RogerB
May 28th, 2003, 10:25 AM
Why not start the ball rolling by showing us your answers to those questions...?

Why not just cut to the chase and post why you think you are a better judge of my experiences than I?

Gerald
May 28th, 2003, 10:38 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Why not just cut to the chase and post why you think you are a better judge of my experiences than I?
I don't know what your experiences are. Therefore I can't determine whether they are baloney or not.

I can only speak from my own experience, and my experience has been that nothing remotely supernatural, spiritual, etc. has ever happened to me, in my whole life.

As I believe I am in no way special, differing in no fundamental way from the rest of humanity, I can only conclude that the rest of humanity hasn't had any supernatural experiences either, despite their protestations to the contrary.

How do I account for the prophets of old? Starvation, dehydration, brain damage, epilepsy, ergotism, or some combination of these elements.

RogerB
May 28th, 2003, 11:15 AM
I don't know what your experiences are. Therefore I can't determine whether they are baloney or not. And even after learning about my experiences you would be no more qualified to determine their baloney factor. To think otherwise starts you out on the wrong foot from the get go.

I can only speak from my own experience, and my experience has been that nothing remotely supernatural, spiritual, etc. has ever happened to me, in my whole life. Have you ever trusted God?

As I believe I am in no way special notice the restraint, differing in no fundamental way from the rest of humanity, I can only conclude that the rest of humanity hasn't had any supernatural experiences either, despite their protestations to the contrary. There you go again thinking that you are better able to determine the veracity of someone else's life experiences. Go to jail. Go directly to jail.

How do I account for the prophets of old? Starvation, dehydration, brain damage, epilepsy, ergotism, or some combination of these elements. Ummm...I didn't ask, but, now that you mention it, are you saying that the Old Testament prophets who correctly predicted future events were merely hungry, thirsty, etc.? Have YOU tried predicting the future lately?

Gerald
May 28th, 2003, 12:06 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
Have you ever trusted God?I have no reason to trust that which, by your own admission, cannot be demonstrated to exist.

Ummm...I didn't ask, but, now that you mention it, are you saying that the Old Testament prophets who correctly predicted future events were merely hungry, thirsty, etc.?Prophesy is vague, and always subject to interpretation. AFAIK, the bulk of those allegedly predicted events did not occur until many years later; rarely was the prophet around to say "See, I told you so!"

Given enough time, any event can be said to fulfill this or that prophesy. And ancient texts can always be altered to fit...

Have YOU tried predicting the future lately?Why, yes, now that you mention it. Back in college, I predicted that I would successfully pound into hash a certain opponent, and do so without a scratch.

Know what? That particular prophecy was fulfilled...:chuckle:

RogerB
May 28th, 2003, 12:21 PM
I have no reason to trust that which, by your own admission, cannot be demonstrated to exist.

You misunderstood (fancy that). You ask any Christian the 5 questions I posted earlier and you will be overwhelmed with proof. Find one to talk to in person in order to avoid word games.


the bulk of those allegedly predicted events did not occur until many years later

So there's a limit on how far out in the future Prophets can predict? :doh:


rarely was the prophet around to say "See, I told you so!"

Another new Prophet rule I never heard about.


Know what? That particular prophecy was fulfilled...

Yes, you've practically proven my point for me. With atheists like you, who needs believers? :chuckle:

Gerald
May 28th, 2003, 12:41 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
You misunderstood (fancy that). You ask any Christian the 5 questions I posted earlier and you will be overwhelmed with proof.Proof of what? That people believe invisible entities muck around in their lives? Nothing overwhelming about that.

Find one to talk to in person in order to avoid word games.Impossible. Word games are part and parcel of supernaturalist beliefs.

So there's a limit on how far out in the future Prophets can predict? :doh:Well, if a given event comes to pass long after you're dead, it doesn't do much for your credibility...

...who needs believers? :chuckle: I've often asked that question myself.

Here's another prophesy for you: You, RogerB, will slip in the shower before 20 years have passed.

Prophesy is easy!:devil:

RogerB
May 28th, 2003, 01:20 PM
Proof of what? That people believe [God is active] in their lives? Nothing overwhelming about that.

Word games corrected for clarity and truth.

You have no valid challenge to someone talking about a personal experience. well, you could call them a liar but that would be stupid and childish. :doh:

Gerald
May 28th, 2003, 01:47 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
You have no valid challenge to someone talking about a personal experience.Indeed! That is not in dispute. If someone claims to be having conversations with invisible friends, I'm in no position to say he isn't. At the same time, if he tries to introduce his invisible friends to me, I have no reason to act as if said invisible friends are actually there...

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 06:42 AM
Originally posted by BillyBob
Zakath;
Don't look at me, it wasn't my turn to put out the elf repellent!

Billy;
Careful guys, you might hurt his 'elf-esteem'....

Perhaps you'd better keep such comments to your elf. :chuckle:

BillyBob
May 29th, 2003, 06:48 AM
Thanks for your contribution to my 'elf loathing'.

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 06:56 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
But YOU keep asking and asking and asking....so people feel compelled to answer with something. Ask different questions, like:

1. What was your life like before you stepped aside and let God take control?

2. How have you seen God working in your life?

3. Has God answered your prayers?

4. What happenes when you turn a problem over to God compared to what happenes when you try to deal with it on your own?

5. In what ways does God speak to you?

All five question beg the question of the existence of the deity, which is what the atheist is discussing in the first place...

Why do I find it difficult to take claims of "God told me..." as factual?

Two reasons:

First, take the recent case of Deanna LaJune Laney, a fundamentalist Christian who claimed to have "heard from God". Laney stands charged with the May 10th murder of two of her three children by stoning. The third, an infant, survives in critical condition. Laney is a long-time member of an Assembly of God church and is the sister-in-law of the pastor, Gary Bell.

Or the case of another Texas mother, Andrea Yates, who drowned her five children to "save them from hell".

There are Christians on this board who are in favor of reinstituting stoning as a form of execution, based on the idea that "God said it was the proper thing to do."

A question might be asked; How come "God" tells these followers one thing and other followers, who oppose such activities, something else?

Second, recent research has shown that properly trained people could, in appropriate clinical setting, take many religionists and induce a purely psychosomatic "divine experience" that they would be unable to distinguish from what they claim is a "normal" experience of their deity.

Since that has been demonstrated in a lab setting in several instances, merely claiming that "God did it" or "God said it" is sorely lacking as sound objective evidence.

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 06:57 AM
Originally posted by BillyBob
Thanks for your contribution to my 'elf loathing'.

Perhaps you should sign up for a course in "elf esteem", to build up your "elf image." ;)

RogerB
May 29th, 2003, 06:57 AM
Stop with the jokes or elf I'm gonna sick my orc on you.

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 06:58 AM
Aww, go play with your elf, RogerB!

RogerB
May 29th, 2003, 07:02 AM
Two reasons....

I can't believe you actually posted this, Zakath. Ever hear of mental illness? I'll bet that the majority of the Christians on this site are NOT mentally ill and have never killed one of their children.

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 07:11 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
I can't believe you actually posted this, Zakath. Ever hear of mental illness? I'll bet that the majority of the Christians on this site are NOT mentally ill and have never killed one of their children.
Yet one of the greatest biblical men of faith was lauded for being willing to kill his own son, at the order of YHWH...

I don't think it's an unreasonable topic for discussion.

What I do notice is that you didn't address any of the questions I raised...

RogerB
May 29th, 2003, 07:16 AM
A question might be asked; How come "God" tells these followers one thing and other followers, who oppose such activities, something else?

This is the only question I found in your post and I think my comments on mental illness suffice.

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 07:20 AM
So you are implying that anyone who claims to hear from God is mentally ill?

RogerB
May 29th, 2003, 07:38 AM
What are you saying, Zakath? Atheists aren't capable of thinking?

This is getting so old.


Welcome to the planet
Welcome to existence
Everyone's here
Everybody's watching you now
Everybody waits for you now
What happens next?

I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened before

Welcome to the far out
Welcome to resistance
Attention is here
Between who you are and who you could be
Between how it is and how it should be

I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened

Maybe redemption has stories to tell
Maybe forgiveness is right where you fell
Where can you run to escape from yourself?
Where you gonna go?
Salvation is here

I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened
Today never happened before

prodigalson
May 29th, 2003, 03:10 PM
If you have ever taken LSD (20 years or so ago when LSD actually existed) you can only imagine how fascinating life will be with (not just a redeemed body) but also a redeemed mind. I can't wait.

I have almost used this same analogy with some of my friends that say Heaven(of all places) will be boring. I always tell them, do you honestly think God will not have a high better than anything anyone has ever experienced on Earth. I have never felt as good as I did on 3 hits of good acid but I know God will never be outdone. God is extreme in what he does(b/c he is God) so heaven will not just be "a little" better than an Earthly high.

Now to the topic at hand.....

Say what you will but I used to have a core desire for sin and after I was saved my core desire is Righteousness, that is impossable to do "on your own". My life might not always reflect Righteousness but that is b/c it is hard going against fleshly desires and with no accountability, it is almost impossible. Temptation is very, very, very hard, but if I had a wish it would be a righteous one.

What are the odds of Evolution happening like it did? 30,000,000 to 1? It's been so long since I saw that odd it is probably not right, but as a person who has gambled in his life, I tell you odds like that never happen and I mean never. People wouldn't give that bet anm ounce of thought but millions of people have bet their life on it. Strange.

I came in late to this discussion so if anything in my post has been addresses(which it probably has been), just ignore it.

Zakath
May 29th, 2003, 04:33 PM
Originally posted by RogerB
What are you saying, Zakath? Atheists aren't capable of thinking?


Once again Rodger the dodger demonstrates why his nickname fits him so well...

I should know better than to expect a straight answer from a religionist... :rolleyes:

Well you cannot say I didn't give you every opportunity...


This is getting so old.Agreed, come back when you have somthing besides schlocky poetry to contribute... :doh:

BillyBob
May 29th, 2003, 05:47 PM
Prodigalson;
What are the odds of Evolution happening like it did? 30,000,000 to 1?

Billy;
It is probably much less likely than that. There are more stars than that just in our own galaxy, say, 100,000,000. So the odds would be 100,000,000 to 1 that evolution happened the way it did in this galaxy. Oh, but then each star probably has at least a few planets circling around it, so the odds may be 500,000,000 to 1. Then multiply that number times the number of galaxies there are and the odds become 500,000,000,000,000,000 to 1 that life would have evolved the way it has on this planet.

That should make you feel pretty special.....

Z Man
May 29th, 2003, 06:10 PM
Actually, I think the odds may be more than that....like 1 googleplex or something. That would be a 1 with 60 zeros behind it, or something like that. I really don't know; I'm just shooting in the dark here. :D But I do think it may be more than what Billy Bob stated....

BillyBob
May 29th, 2003, 07:36 PM
It may be a googleplex times a googleplex to 1. The more unlikely the odds, the more amazing our existence becomes.....

One Eyed Jack
May 29th, 2003, 08:34 PM
A google is 1 followed by 100 zeros. A googleplex is 1 followed by one google zeros, which is a staggeringly huge number -- there aren't that many atoms in the universe. Come to think of it, I don't believe there are even one google atoms in the universe...

prodigalson
May 29th, 2003, 08:42 PM
How about we just do a google search. Bad joke but I stand by it!:chuckle:

BillyBob
May 29th, 2003, 09:21 PM
I saw a statistic that claimed DNA could produce different species to the order of 1 with a million zeros. DNA only has 4 chemical components. Amazing!

That was 1 with A MILLION ZEROS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Z Man
May 29th, 2003, 11:09 PM
1 with a MILLION ZEROS? HA!!! That's a drop in the ocean compared to eternity....

RogerB
May 30th, 2003, 05:36 AM
So you are implying that anyone who claims to hear from God is mentally ill?

Do you REALLY think that's what I was implying? REALLY? I simply responded to your stupid question with the response it deserved.

Zakath, :king: of Schlock

Zakath
May 30th, 2003, 05:47 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Do you REALLY think that's what I was implying? REALLY? I simply responded to your stupid question with the response it deserved.But this evasive answer hasn't denied that was what you were implying yet, has it? ;)

RogerB
May 30th, 2003, 06:33 AM
No, I am not implying that anyone who claims to hears from God is mentally ill.

BillyBob
May 30th, 2003, 06:48 AM
He appears to be a bit 'elf concious'.

RogerB
May 30th, 2003, 06:56 AM
More like "elf-aggrandizing".

Z Man
May 30th, 2003, 09:17 AM
Atheists are like vampires: but instead of desiring people's blood, they hunger after people's hope....

Zakath
May 30th, 2003, 09:29 AM
People's hope is their own affair.

All atheists say is that deities don't exist.

All we ask here is that someone prove they do.

I've been posting here for almost three years and not a single religionist of any stripe has been able to demonstrate the unambiguous reality of their deity.

I'm beginning to wonder if such thing is at all possible... :think:

Z Man
May 30th, 2003, 09:39 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
I've been posting here for almost three years and not a single religionist of any stripe has been able to demonstrate the unambiguous reality of their deity.
"You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink." - Anonymous

Zakath,
Many christians here have led you and shown you the door, but we can't force you through; you have to open it yourself....

RogerB
May 30th, 2003, 10:24 AM
I'm beginning to wonder if such thing is at all possible...

There you go again!

Zakath
May 30th, 2003, 10:34 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
"You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink." - AnonymousParticularly when the "pond" is a mirage.


Zakath,
Many christians here have led you and shown you the door, but we can't force you through; you have to open it yourself.... The alleged "door" opens only to their own imaginations, it appears that nothing tangible of the deity exists outside the minds of its worshippers.

Z Man
May 30th, 2003, 10:48 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
Particularly when the "pond" is a mirage.
Well, you can't keep asking us Christians for proof. We led you to the pond and all you can do is stare at it and deny it exists by stating, "It's a mirage"?!?! That's just plain and blatant denial on your part. You'll never know until you drink from it.....

The alleged "door" opens only to their own imaginations, it appears that nothing tangible of the deity exists outside the minds of its worshippers.
You can't speculate what's inside your door by looking at everyone elses'. Open your own door Zakath... You are counting your chickens before they hatch by saying there is nothing inside. How do you know? You haven't opened it yet!

You expect people to believe that all of this is false when we have opened our doors and have drank from the ever living fountain of God and have seen and tasted that which is real? How can you deny what we have witnessed? You ask for proof and I say, "Open your door and drink from the fountain we have presented to you. Only then will you know He is real..."

Zakath
May 30th, 2003, 01:59 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
Well, you can't keep asking us Christians for proof. We led you to the pond and all you can do is stare at it and deny it exists by stating, "It's a mirage"?!?! That's just plain and blatant denial on your part. You'll never know until you drink from it..... I keep telling you people. The only water in the pond is in your own heads... (Deliberately avoiding comments about believers and water on the brain... ;) )


You can't speculate what's inside your door by looking at everyone elses'. Open your own door Zakath... You are counting your chickens before they hatch by saying there is nothing inside. How do you know? You haven't opened it yet! Been there, done that. I knocked for years and no one was home.


You expect people to believe that all of this is false when we have opened our doors and have drank from the ever living fountain of God and have seen and tasted that which is real? How can you deny what we have witnessed?

You expect little kids to believe that Santa Claus is false when they have opened their very real presents and tasted from the heady joys of Christmas morning? How can you deny what they have witnessed?

Yet we do deny such things... :think:

prodigalson
May 30th, 2003, 08:18 PM
Man - Show me God and I'll believe.

God - Believe and I'll show you.

That's pretty much it, but even if a person has proof, they will explain it away. That's just how they do it.

You want proof, look at creation, it's unreal, the sun, the stars, other planets, look at men and women(especially women) and see how perfect they are created, look at the things below the surface, how things work in harmony. Look at an Michael Jordan, that talent can only be God given, listen to Jimi Hendrix, that talent can only be God given. But instead of seeing a Creator, atheists see a 1,000,000,000 to 1 shot. If you are going to put your faith in a long shot like that, God would pretty much have to stand in front of you for you to believe.

I didn't believe in God but when my friend would witness to me he just said pray that God will reveal himself to you. I did b/c if he is God and died for me, he will answer that prayer right? Only the truth will come from that so it's a win-win situation.

Z Man
May 30th, 2003, 09:38 PM
Good point Prodigalson. :thumb:

You'll just have to excuse Zakath. It seems he's still angry at the realization that Santa Clause doesn't exist. :chuckle:

Originally posted by Zakath
I keep telling you people. The only water in the pond is in your own heads... (Deliberately avoiding comments about believers and water on the brain... ;) )
Zakaths' new saying - "You can lead a horse to water, but when he looks at it, he'll think, "I'm not drinking that; it's not real".

You know what happens to the horse if he doesn't drink because he thinks it's not real; he dies of thirst....

Been there, done that. I knocked for years and no one was home.
That's your problem; you were waiting for God to open the door...

You expect little kids to believe that Santa Claus is false when they have opened their very real presents and tasted from the heady joys of Christmas morning? How can you deny what they have witnessed?

Yet we do deny such things... :think:
You still haven't gotten over the fact that Santa doesn't exist, have you? That's really sad... And you're a psychyotrist?!?! :crackup:

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 05:24 AM
Originally posted by prodigalson
Man - Show me God and I'll believe.

God - Believe and I'll show you.

That's pretty much it, but even if a person has proof, they will explain it away. That's just how they do it.Interesting point. What you are describing is "rationalization" and people on both sides of the aisle (believers and non-believers) do it all the time.

Listen to any fundy Christian discuss another religion and you'll essentially hear similar arguments that atheists use to question Christianity.


You want proof, look at...(deleted list)All you are doing is attributing things you don't understand the mechanisms for to a deity. It's a free country so go right ahead; but remember that only a few hundred years ago people like you were attributing malaria to bad air and congenital birth defects to witches' curses. As we learn more about the universe, there is less and less that is the providence of the divine and more and more that is rationally explainable. The deity's turf gets smaller every generation...


I didn't believe in God but when my friend would witness to me he just said pray that God will reveal himself to you. When I was a Christian, I used to say similar things, but time and experience have shown me I was incorrect.


I did b/c if he is God and died for me, he will answer that prayer right?That's a big "if". In my case, there was no answer other than my own imagination - for over three decades.

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 05:31 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Good point Prodigalson. :thumb:Only to another religionist... :down:


You'll just have to excuse Zakath. It seems he's still angry at the realization that Santa Clause doesn't exist. Hardly, merely drawing an analogy. Interesting that the only way you choose to address it is by ad hominem. Perhaps that's because you can't address the difference between a child's belief in Santa Claus and your belief in your deity... :think:


That's your problem; you were waiting for God to open the door...

I was merely following the scriptural instruction by Jesus of Nazareth: "...knock and the door will be opened to you." Mt. 7:7

As nearly as I read that it doesn't say, knock and kick in the door... ;)


... And you're a psychyotrist?!?! No, I'm a psychologist. :D (And the word you're trying to spell is "psychiatrist")

Freak
May 31st, 2003, 11:13 AM
Zakath reveals:

"When I was a Christian, I used to say similar things, but time and experience have shown me I was incorrect."


When did you lose your Salvation? Was it during dinner?

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 11:16 AM
Originally posted by Freak
When did you lose your Salvation? Was it during dinner?
Yeah, with an exorcist. All that pea soup... :vomit:

Seriously, I've told my "anti-testimony" story half a dozen times... do try to keep up, Jay.

Freak
May 31st, 2003, 11:42 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
I've told my "anti-testimony" story half a dozen times...

Well, did you lose your salvation during dinner, while walking the dog, while driving???

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 11:46 AM
It was a gradual process, not an epiphanic experience, if that's what you're searching for... :)

Freak
May 31st, 2003, 01:18 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
It was a gradual process, not an epiphanic experience, if that's what you're searching for... :)

:confused: "Gradual process" so you lost your salvation bit by bit?

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 02:07 PM
No, I woke up to reality gradually. Some wake up all at once and I woke up over a period of time...

Freak
May 31st, 2003, 02:21 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
No, I woke up to reality gradually. Some wake up all at once and I woke up over a period of time...

That didn't answer my question. But oh well, you tried :rolleyes:

Z Man
May 31st, 2003, 02:21 PM
He never lost his salvation because he never was saved.... :rolleyes:

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 02:35 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
He never lost his salvation because he never was saved.... :rolleyes:

All together now children, "No True Scotsman" fallacy... :bannana:

Zakath
May 31st, 2003, 02:37 PM
Originally posted by Freak
That didn't answer my question. But oh well, you tried :rolleyes:

I'll use small words so it will be easier for you to understand... :rolleyes:

I gradually came to realize that there was no such thing as God.:doh:

How's that? Simple enough for you? :thumb:

Freak
May 31st, 2003, 03:44 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
I'll use small words so it will be easier for you to understand... :rolleyes:

I gradually came to realize that there was no such thing as God.:doh:

How's that? Simple enough for you? :thumb:

And that took years to realize? Again, when did you lose your salvation? You said you did so when did you?

Shaun
May 31st, 2003, 04:49 PM
Zakath: The "No True Scotsman" fallacy is a highly overused, misunderstood fallacy.

If you were not a Christian by His decision, then you were not a Christian. Being a Christian is determined not by us, but by His grace.

Aimiel
May 31st, 2003, 05:03 PM
Originally posted by Zakath I gradually came to realize that there was no such thing as God.Zak,

I've told you, repeatedly, you can't come to God without faith and find Him. You first have to believe that He IS, and then you have to diligently seek Him. Sounds like you (somewhat) diligently sought Him, and then decided to continue to NOT believe that He exists. Remember, the fool has said, in his heart, "There is no God." :doh:

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 08:01 AM
Originally posted by Freak
And that took years to realize?
No, it took me years to accept, since it violated some things I was strongly supportive of...

[quoteAgain, when did you lose your salvation? You said you did so when did you? [/QUOTE]I cannot provide a specific date or hour for my deconversion any more than many people could tell the date and hour of their conversion.

Why is it so important to you to know this?

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 08:04 AM
Originally posted by Shaun
Zakath: The "No True Scotsman" fallacy is a highly overused, misunderstood fallacy.Yes, but not by me. :)


If you were not a Christian by His decision, then you were not a Christian. Being a Christian is determined not by us, but by His grace. If I was not a Christian, then the entire discussion is pointless. The problem that afflicts certain fundamentalist Christians is their mistaken belief that once a person has experienced metanoia that they cannot experience a reversal.

There is ample evidence to prove that reversals of faith to faithlessness do take place. Otherwise the Christian doctrine of free will is meaningless.

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 08:25 AM
Originally posted by famousGandalf7
Zak,

I've told you, repeatedly, you can't come to God without faith and find Him...

How do you reconcile the human's requirement with Jesus' teaching that God must draw a human to himself... "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him..." Jn 6:44

Paul taught in Romans 12:3 that God gives men faith.

This would appear to be not something that humans do, but something that God does in humans.

Unless of course, there is a contradiction.

But perhaps the gift was removed?

Perhps the gifter doesn't exist, except in my own mind...

You have no way of telling except for your subjective experience which cannot be demonstrated for anyone else.

Aimiel
June 1st, 2003, 01:37 PM
Originally posted by Zakath How do you reconcile the human's requirement with Jesus' teaching that God must draw a human to himself... "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him..." Jn 6:44God will not force anyone to believe, whether or not they respond to His drawing is up to them.
Paul taught in Romans 12:3 that God gives men faith.Each one gets 'the measure,' but what they do with it is different, with each individual.
This would appear to be not something that humans do, but something that God does in humans.He designed the whole shootin'-match.
Unless of course, there is a contradiction. Heaven forbid, God can NOT lie.
But perhaps the gift was removed?God doesn't work like that.
Perhps the gifter doesn't exist, except in my own mind...Perhaps you're being foolish now.
You have no way of telling except for your subjective experience which cannot be demonstrated for anyone else. You have not given yourself a fair shake, denying the existence of God is foolish. You are being unfair to your own self, and that is the height of foolishness.

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 02:41 PM
Originally posted by famousGandalf7
Heaven forbid, God can NOT lie.And why do you believe that?

Lion
June 1st, 2003, 03:40 PM
I believe God could lie, if He wanted to.

Aimiel
June 1st, 2003, 08:15 PM
If He said something which were un-true, it would become Truth with His Word.

For instance: "Lazarus is asleep," and "Let there be light." Neither one of those were true, but became Truth.

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 09:04 PM
Originally posted by famousGandalf7
God will not force anyone to believe, whether or not they respond to His drawing is up to them.You are talking about the same deity that "hardens the hearts" of men so they can be victims of his wrath, right?


Heaven forbid, God can NOT lie.That depends entirely on what you define as a lie now, doesn't it?

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 09:06 PM
Originally posted by famousGandalf7
If He said something which were un-true, it would become Truth with His Word.

For instance: "Lazarus is asleep," and "Let there be light." Neither one of those were true, but became Truth. Then your argument is a tautology and logically invalid.

By your logic, were he to say "Zakath is saved." I would be, free will not withstanding.

Aimiel
June 1st, 2003, 09:16 PM
Yes, and The Same King of The Universe Who created the wicked for the day of destruction.

God can NOT lie.

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 09:24 PM
And you cannot frame a logical argument. :rolleyes:

Aimiel
June 1st, 2003, 09:45 PM
I'm not trying to.

Zakath
June 1st, 2003, 10:13 PM
Good, because if you were, you're not succeeding. ;)

prodigalson
June 2nd, 2003, 11:09 AM
Zakath, how could you of been "saved" if God doesn't exist?

You were never saved to begin with because at the point of salvation you become justified(in the eyes of God), born again(your nature), and sanctafication begins. The first two are basically one and done while sanctification will last your lifetime.

You can say your nature was changed and were 'born again' and you had righteous desires at your core but obviously you didn't(not b/c you left the church), but since you don't even have that internal struggle now of righteousness and sin.

Zakath
June 2nd, 2003, 01:30 PM
Originally posted by prodigalson
Zakath, how could you of been "saved" if God doesn't exist?I thought I was, similar to some of the posters here...


You were never saved to begin with because at the point of salvation you become justified(in the eyes of God), born again(your nature), and sanctafication begins. The first two are basically one and done while sanctification will last your lifetime.

You can say your nature was changed and were 'born again' and you had righteous desires at your core but obviously you didn't(not b/c you left the church), but since you don't even have that internal struggle now of righteousness and sin. The internal struggle is between an individual's conscience (their internal moral sense) and actions or thoughts that conflict with that moral sense.

I generally act in accord with my moral sense now so there is little conflict.

Z Man
June 2nd, 2003, 05:17 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
There is ample evidence to prove that reversals of faith to faithlessness do take place. Otherwise the Christian doctrine of free will is meaningless.
Free will exists, but not in reguards to ones salvation. Man cannot choose God because we despise God. We love sin because that is our nature. Loving God is an impossible choice that man cannot make; that takes an act of God. ;)

Romans 8:7-8
The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

I thought I was [saved], similar to some of the posters here...
You couldn't have thought you were saved, because if you truely believed you were saved, you'd still be. You never believed and leaving the church is evidence of this.

1 John 2:19
They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.

Aimiel
June 2nd, 2003, 05:29 PM
Originally posted by Zakath I thought I was, similar to some of the posters here... The difference between thinking one is saved and KNOWING that you are saved is like night and day. If you were truly saved, you would have KNOWN. It would have stuck, and you'd be convinced of The Truth. It is one of the simplest things to explain, but impossible to understand, objectively; just as the message of the Gospel is foolishness to them that are perishing.

Z Man
June 2nd, 2003, 05:38 PM
Exactly. :thumb:

Nova
June 2nd, 2003, 11:07 PM
Newbie here, jumping into the fray:jump:

For the record, I'm not an atheist, but agnostic...and one of those ex fundamentalist 'born againer' Christians which fundamentalist 'born againer' Christians claim I never really was in the first place since I am no longer a Christian at all.

I'm familliar with the usual complaints about atheism as expressed in this thread...its 'empty and meaningless, a futile attempt to fill the Jehovah-shaped hole in your soul with sex n' drugs n' rock and roll and other fleeting materialistic concerns Of The Big, Bad World', that's usually the general gist of it.

I really don't think atheists need apologists, especially since its not an evangelical worldview, most atheists aren't seeking converts. They certainly aren't obligated to justify themselves to Christians, but for the sake of debate I'll add my $0.02

I think the assumptions made of atheists by the Christians in this thread are superficial, cliche generalizations...akin to a hypothetical atheist making a similar blanket statement like " Christians are ignorant and don't think for themselves, they don't strive to live their lives to the fullest, and they're all self-righteous, boring prudes", which is equally off the mark concerning many Christians.

If Christians are content with being Christian, I don't have anything worthwhile to gain from trying to convince them otherwise, its their life to live, and I'm in no place to go up to a complete stranger and inform them how empty and futile I think their lives must be...because I really don't jump to those conclusions, especially about complete strangers. Although I can understand how evangelicals might find that beneficial to their cause, and that some of them really do have nothing but good intentions.

But if an atheist posted a similar litany of all they see wrong with, in this case Christianity, informing you all that your lives are a meaningless charade in submission to the irrelevant mores and taboos of ancient yahoodies who had nothing better to do but wander around in the desert, and that your's is a wasted life not lived to its fullest, I'm pretty sure that you would take some offense to that assumption and maybe even assume the martyr's role, lamenting that you are being persecuted for your faith.

My only response to a Christian who assumes that my lifemust be empty and unhappy is that I simply agree to disagree. I'm certainly not obligated to sit around and justify the quality of my own existance to someone who barely knows me. And If someone, atheist or not, really were so overly concerned with what a relative stranger assumes about the innermost sanctums of their personal lives, then such a person really does need to find a more fufilling outlook on their life. :ahso:

Shaun
June 2nd, 2003, 11:49 PM
Nova: One quick question, and I need an honest answer.

When you were a Christian, which of the two made you happiest? (According to your beliefs at the time)

1) When God blessed you and lifted you up
2) When God ruined you, and made you lift him up

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 12:00 AM
Originally posted by Nova
For the record, I'm not an atheist, but agnostic...and one of those ex fundamentalist 'born againer' Christians...
Agnostic huh? You'll be an interesting one to "knick pick" at...

BTW, there is no such thing as an "ex fundamentalist 'born againer' Christian". Nor is there such a thing as an agnostic... :nono: ;)

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 12:03 AM
Originally posted by Shaun
Nova: One quick question, and I need an honest answer.

When you were a Christian, which of the two made you happiest? (According to your beliefs at the time)

1) When God blessed you and lifted you up
2) When God ruined you, and made you lift him up

Well obviously when I *believed* (emphasis on the subjective) that the good things that happened were a result of God 'blessing' me.

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 12:11 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Agnostic huh? You'll be an interesting one to "knick pick" at...

BTW, there is no such thing as an "ex fundamentalist 'born againer' Christian". Nor is there such a thing as an agnostic... :nono: ;)

:readthis:like I alluded to in my original post, I realize that the consensus among the Christians here is there's 'no such thing as an ex-Christian'. I've also heard the one about 'No such thing as an atheist', but I've never seen that applied to agnostics.

Wow, I guess that means you just completely negated my very existance! :shocked:

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 12:14 AM
Do you believe in God? If so, you're a Christian. Do you not believe in God? Then you're not a Christian, but an atheist. There is no in between because there's only one God, and either you believe in Him or not...

Lion
June 3rd, 2003, 05:27 AM
Nova-You said:
like I alluded to in my original post, I realize that the consensus among the Christians here is there's 'no such thing as an ex-Christian'. I've also heard the one about 'No such thing as an atheist', but I've never seen that applied to agnostics.
How about a slightly different view?

I believe you may have been a Christian at one time, but are not a Christian now. How old were you when you believed, and how old were you when you decided it was bunk?

There’s a thing called the age of accountability we might want to talk about.

You also said:
My only response to a Christian who assumes that my lifemust be empty and unhappy is that I simply agree to disagree.
Whether your life is empty or full has nothing to do with it. The truth is what matters. And the truth in this case is that you do believe in a god. But which God you chose to follow is the question. The true God, or yourself. If you decide that you want to be your God, I would certainly not interfere with your choice. However, if you are instead looking for the truth, then its worth the time to discuss it with you.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 06:01 AM
Originally posted by Nova
:readthis:like I alluded to in my original post, I realize that the consensus among the Christians here is there's 'no such thing as an ex-Christian'. I've also heard the one about 'No such thing as an atheist', but I've never seen that applied to agnostics.

Wow, I guess that means you just completely negated my very existance! :shocked: Don't feel badly, Nova. Some of these folks are a bit like the fellow who quit his job to "live by faith". Every day he prayed and prayed and no money came in. His wife pleaded with him to return to work, he claimed that the deity told him to pray and it would all work out...

After three months the bank reposessed the family car.

After five months, they took the furniture.

After six months, they reposessed the house.

After 10 months, his wife took the kids and left.

Last I heard, the fellow is still "keeping the faith" in a homeless shelter in Chicago. He's still waiting for "God" to answer his prayers.

That, in a nutshell is the story of a real individual I know. He ignored the "things that didn't line up with the Word" and lost even his family.

Religionists are pretty good at ignoring reality when it conflicts with their preconceived ideas about faith...

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 06:05 AM
Originally posted by famousGandalf7
The difference between thinking one is saved and KNOWING that you are saved is like night and day. If you were truly saved, you would have KNOWN. Just like that woman in Texas KNEW that God was telling her to kill her kids?

Just like the people that died in Guyana with Jim Jones KNEW that God was telling them what to do?

Just like the people who emasculated themselves and committed suicide at the Heaven's Gate group KNEW what was right?


It is one of the simplest things to explain, but impossible to understand, objectively.... History shows that such subjectivism is dangerous... :rolleyes:

Singerian
June 3rd, 2003, 06:40 AM
Feeling like you know comes as much from the type of person you are as from the evidence. I'm sure the agnostic and the Christian have equal evidence of God, but the Christian's drive for certainty is just stronger, and it's easier to believe something that there's little evidence of than to go through the uncertain period of finding that evidence.

shima
June 3rd, 2003, 07:19 AM
>>History shows that such subjectivism is dangerous... <<

Extremely. Some things cannot be understood objectively. But subjectivism means that what you WANT to be true often leaves quite a mark on your view of reality. Its called "Wishfull thinking" and yes, it works. But for that person ONLY.

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 07:26 AM
History shows that such subjectivism is dangerous...

And your supposing that you know the hearts of these individuals is safe?

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 07:33 AM
"By their fruits you shall know them..." :rolleyes:

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 08:02 AM
"By their fruits you shall know them..."

Exactly.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 08:15 AM
Which is why, as an atheist and an empiricist, I look at the behavior of religionists or others who claim to have been "regenerated" or otherwise metamorphosized...

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 08:19 AM
Which is why, as an atheist and an empiricist, I look at the behavior of religionists or others who claim to have been "regenerated" or otherwise metamorphosized...

You are a hypocrite.

You trust everybody? You question nothing?

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 08:26 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
You are a hypocrite.

Baseless assertion number 942...

You got any proof for that lil' hummer, our are you just trolling?


You trust everybody? No.


You question nothing? No.

What's your point, dodger?

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 09:16 AM
Just like that woman in Texas KNEW that God was telling her to kill her kids? Just like the people that died in Guyana with Jim Jones KNEW that God was telling them what to do? Just like the people who emasculated themselves and committed suicide at the Heaven's Gate group KNEW what was right?

Far from baseless, you hypocrite. You are implying that these "religionists" (maybe even Christians) committed heinous acts. Why do you believe them when they say "God told me to do it"?

You know my point. It's just easier for you to ignore it.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 09:19 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Free will exists, but not in reguards to ones salvation. Man cannot choose God because we despise God. We love sin because that is our nature. Loving God is an impossible choice that man cannot make; that takes an act of God. ;)Thus speaks the Calvinist from his viewpoint of the total depravity of man...

So I cannot "accept Christ" as so many Christians here assert so vigorously.

I must wait for the deity to reel me in...

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 09:21 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
Far from baseless, you hypocrite. You are implying that these "religionists" (maybe even Christians) committed heinous acts. Why do you believe them when they say "God told me to do it"?Why not? What basis do you have for not believing them about this?

I wouldn't call you a hypocrite, merely ignorant, since your religion certainly has a basis for such behavior as deity ordered in its sacred writings...

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 10:16 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
So I cannot "accept Christ" as so many Christians here assert so vigorously.
When God regenerates your heart, you'll choose Him.

I must wait for the deity to reel me in...
There is no such thing as waiting when it comes to one's salvation. If one is waiting for God to "awaken" them, they need to wait no more, since they believe in God's saving grace enough to be waiting for Him to take action.

The bottom line is man loves sin, so they do their own thing. Yeah, they may know of God and have heard of Him before, but they want nothing to do with Him. And they definitly will not choose God on their own decision. But when and if God has elected them to salvation, and regenerates an individuals heart, they will openly accept Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. It's an instantaneous change; there is no waiting period...

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
When God regenerates your heart, you'll choose Him.So heaven is filled with automatons, eh? Or is it closer to Borg..."Resistence if futile. You will be assimilated." :rolleyes:


... But when and if God has elected them to salvation, and regenerates an individuals heart, they will openly accept Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. It's an instantaneous change; there is no waiting period... No will, no wait...no way! Better to die standing than live on my knees... :D

Aimiel
June 3rd, 2003, 10:33 AM
Anyone who meets God, falls in love with Him. Our service is not one of slavery, but dedication, due to love.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 10:35 AM
Originally posted by famousGandalf7
Anyone who meets God, falls in love with Him. So the Christian "Satan" is merely a "star crossed lover", eh?


Our service is not one of slavery, but dedication, due to love. The most pitiful slaves do not believe they are slaves, but truly love their owners...

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 10:39 AM
So the Christian "Satan" is merely a "star crossed lover", eh?
Satan was thrown down because he tried to make himself God out of pride. This is why pride is the most dangerous sin.


The most pitiful slaves do not believe they are slaves, but truly love their owners...
I truly love my Lord. :D

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 10:52 AM
Originally posted by Shaun
Satan was thrown down because he tried to make himself God out of pride. Oh really? Why do you think this happened?


This is why pride is the most dangerous sin.Where do you get the idea that one type of sin is more dangerous than another?


I truly love my Lord. I'm sure you think you do. My Hindu neighbors love their deity, too.

Gerald
June 3rd, 2003, 11:17 AM
Originally posted by Shaun
Satan was thrown down because he tried to make himself God out of pride. This is why pride is the most dangerous sin.


I truly love my Lord. :D
Post proof or retract!

:bannana: :bannana: :bannana: :bannana:

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 11:33 AM
Originally posted by Z Man
Do you believe in God? If so, you're a Christian. Do you not believe in God? Then you're not a Christian, but an atheist. There is no in between because there's only one God, and either you believe in Him or not...

Ah, I expected such a non-negotiable black/white dichotomy.

This is apparently your deeply held belief and a lot of the people here don't seem like the types to recognize other possibilities, however valid, since you've already cemented yourselves into a very inflexible ideology.

Of course, from my viewpoint, what the above quote stated so matter-of-factly is to me a matter of subjective belief/opinion.


For the record, I'm an agnostic because the existance of any god can neither be proven or disproven (although I'm sure many will disagree with that one and reply the Bible is 'proof'. ) I don't believe in the Judeo/Christian concept of god. Based on my own studies and ponderings, I lean towards the possibility that if there is anything that could be called 'god' for lack of a better term, s/he/it/us/them is The Cosmos itself. (pantheism).

And I can already see the direction this dialogue might subsequently take...flat denial of my position, assumptions that I take this stance because I can tailor it to my every relativistic whim, lots of quibbling over subjectivism vs. absolutism, back and forth, forth and back and never the twain worldviews shall meet. :bang:

But if I am jumping to false conclusions, I'll stand corrected. I offered a synopsis of where I think this dialogue might be going to save ourselves the trouble of a long, drawn-out bickerfest that will never be resolved in the first place. All I opt to do in such a situation is agree to disagree. Far as I and logical objectivity are concerned, Jehovah is no more likely to exist than Isis.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 11:40 AM
Hang in there, Nova. Someday you'll be an atheist too! :D

Of course someday, so will Z Man! :chuckle:

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 11:45 AM
Originally posted by Lion
Nova-You said:
How about a slightly different view?

I believe you may have been a Christian at one time, but are not a Christian now. How old were you when you believed, and how old were you when you decided it was bunk?


I started out being a Christian pretty much by default, since as a small child I simply followed my parent's lead. As I got older I took a less passive, more active role in my faith. As a pre-teen noted for being mature for her age, I did sincerely believed in needing to be 'saved' and tried my darndest to experience the gnosis of a 'relationship with God' that I was supposed to have.

In my early teens, I made an effort to actually read the entire Bible from cover to cover and it was this, among other factors, that actually lead me to doubt my faith. It didn't happen abruptly but over a period of a year or so, and I devoted a lot of study (from all viewpoints concerning Christianity, not just the subjective belief perspective) and pondering to reach my final decision that Christianity, as you put it, is 'bunk', and I was 14 at the time. 'Course that is a very brief synopsis and doesn't really cover everything, but it suffices.

I'm familliar with the 'Age of Accountability' doctrine, and I can assure you that according to the ideology of most of the Christians here, I am probably 'lost and blind' and behind the wheel of a reckless handbasket to hell.

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 11:46 AM
Post proof or retract!

Post something response-worthy or go away!

:kookoo: :kookoo: :kookoo: :kookoo: :kookoo:

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 11:47 AM
Why not? What basis do you have for not believing them about this?

You answered your own question earlier today.

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 11:48 AM
Originally posted by Lion
which God you chose to follow is the question. The true God, or yourself. If you decide that you want to be your God, I would certainly not interfere with your choice. However, if you are instead looking for the truth, then its worth the time to discuss it with you.

I choose to follow no god. 'Course I realize that many here completely ignore and deny the existance of such gray areas, and the only acceptable answer for them is "I am my own god" or somesuch.

And I am very much a seeker of the truth, I just don't happen to categorize subjective beliefs as objective fact as fundamentalists do.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 11:54 AM
Originally posted by RogerB
You answered your own question earlier today. Sadly enough, I didn't think you had a answer.

I don't know why I keep giving you a chance, RogerB. Every time I hope you've got something to contribute, you fail.

Well, I've only got one thing to say to that!

:director: NEXT!

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 11:57 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
Oh really? Why do you think this happened?

Because God is God. For God to be God, He must not worship anything else. For God to be God, He must not have anything higher than Himself, lest he be worshiping idols.


Where do you get the idea that one type of sin is more dangerous than another?
Because pride begets other sins. Pride is always in competition with other people's pride. Pride is enmity.


I'm sure you think you do. My Hindu neighbors love their deity, too.
That's great. My beliefs are that they worship a false god. But that is not a debate I will debate in here. So don't ad hominem or pick at me, please.

(Whoo! My first blue star!)

RogerB
June 3rd, 2003, 12:02 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
Well, I've only got one thing to say to that!

:director: NEXT!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, represents the sum of every argument an atheist has ever managed to regurgitate.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 12:06 PM
Originally posted by Shaun
Because God is God. For God to be God, He must not worship anything else. For God to be God, He must not have anything higher than Himself, lest he be worshiping idols.If God had something higher than himself that demanded worship, then he wouldn't be worshipping idols, would he?:think:


...So don't ad hominem or pick at me, please.I will treat you with the same level of respect that you treat me. No more, no less. Fair enough? :)


(Whoo! My first blue star!) Congratulations. :)

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 12:11 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
Hang in there, Nova. Someday you'll be an atheist too! :D

Of course someday, so will Z Man! :chuckle:
That would be impossible, given the fact that to be an atheist is to deny your own existence. I don't know about you Zakath, but I'm real, and alive. I exist. Therefor, I can't be an atheist. You must be dilusional to think otherwise... :chuckle:

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 12:13 PM
You'll understand what I mean someday, Z Man. :think:

I can wait... :)

Gerald
June 3rd, 2003, 12:16 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
I don't know about you Zakath, but I'm real, and alive. I exist. Therefor, I can't be an atheist.That little problem can be solved easily enough.

Now, where did I leave that box of scorpions...?

;) :D

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 12:19 PM
Originally posted by Zakath
If God had something higher than himself that demanded worship, then he wouldn't be worshipping idols, would he?:think:
If God had something higher than Himself, He would not be God. The thing higher than Himself would be God.


I will treat you with the same level of respect that you treat me. No more, no less. Fair enough? :)
Perfectly. Just please don't associate me mistakenly with those that attack you. I have not done so, and don't plan on it. I used to be an Atheist--I know how rude and unloving Christians can be. However, I also know how comforting and loving Christians can be.

Congratulations. :)
Thank you. :D

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by Shaun
If God had something higher than Himself, He would not be God. The thing higher than Himself would be God. That was one of the the points of the idea that Lucifer was cast from heaven. It's a matter of "There can be only one."



Just please don't associate me mistakenly with those that attack you. I have not done so, and don't plan on it. Good, then we should get along fine, even if we do not always agree.


I used to be an Atheist--I know how rude and unloving Christians can be. However, I also know how comforting and loving Christians can be.I've found rude and comforting on both sides. Humans will be human, after all.

Edited to fix typo... - Z

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 12:50 PM
Originally posted by Gerald
That little problem can be solved easily enough.

Now, where did I leave that box of scorpions...?

;) :D
:crackup: Funny Gerald...

I don't want to die, and I'm not saying atheist are dead; I'm just saying that to actually claim to be an atheist, one denies purpose in life. Life without a purpose can not exist....

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 12:54 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
I'm just saying that to actually claim to be an atheist, one denies purpose in life.

No, they deny inherent religious purpose in life, that doesn't mean they deny ALL purpose. Some believe that the purpose of an individual's life is what they choose to make it.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 01:02 PM
Well put, Nova. :)

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 01:20 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
I'm just saying that to actually claim to be an atheist, one denies purpose in life. Life without a purpose can not exist....
Eh, ZMan, I'd disagree here.

One can have a purpose different than the purpose it was designed for--just as a computer gone haywire still exists, even if it isn't doing what it is supposed to do.

Their purpose is different from ours, however wrong we may believe they are. However, to state that they can not exist is a bit ludicrous. They deny their initial, God-given purpose in life--but they do not deny purpose in general.

It's actually impossible to totally deny purpose: even if one made it their intention to not have any purpose in life, therein would be their purpose, and they would have failed.

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 02:42 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
... to actually claim to be an atheist, one denies purpose in life. Life without a purpose can not exist.... But I have a purpose. :)

My purpose here on TOL is entertainment! :bannana:

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 02:53 PM
Posted by Nova:
Well obviously when I *believed* (emphasis on the subjective) that the good things that happened were a result of God 'blessing' me.
That's not an answer to my question. :rolleyes:

When you were a Christian, which of the two made you happiest? (According to your beliefs at the time)

1) When God blessed you and lifted you up
2) When God ruined you, and made you lift him up

Did you mean #1?

Shaun
just asking

P.S. There you go Zak. ;)

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 02:55 PM
Shaun,

To whom is your post addressed? :confused:

Nova
June 3rd, 2003, 05:30 PM
Originally posted by Shaun
That's not an answer to my question. :rolleyes:

No, I just don't think it was the kind of answer you wanted, and I suspect this might be a loaded question.


(According to your beliefs at the time)

That is basically re-phrasing how I already answered, I alluded to option 1, I obviously felt happier when I *believed* the reason the good things that happened were a result of 'god blessing me and lifting me up'.

I no longer believe the good things are a direct result of any god, but they bring me no less happiness.

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 06:07 PM
Okay, thanks! :)

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 06:14 PM
Originally posted by Shaun
Eh, ZMan, I'd disagree here.

One can have a purpose different than the purpose it was designed for--just as a computer gone haywire still exists, even if it isn't doing what it is supposed to do.

Their purpose is different from ours, however wrong we may believe they are. However, to state that they can not exist is a bit ludicrous. They deny their initial, God-given purpose in life--but they do not deny purpose in general.

It's actually impossible to totally deny purpose: even if one made it their intention to not have any purpose in life, therein would be their purpose, and they would have failed.
To live a life apart from God's purpose is to be as good as dead. Yeah, these atheists may have their own little purposes for living, but it won't do them any good in the end. The only purpse worth living for is that which is from God.

Originally posted by Zakath
My purpose here on TOL is entertainment!
And you do a swell job at it! :zakath:

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 06:18 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
To live a life apart from God's purpose is to be as good as dead. Yeah, these atheists may have their own little purposes for living, but it won't do them any good in the end. The only purpse worth living for is that which is from God.


Aye, but they still exist. I agree that any purpose outside of giving to the glory of God is vanity--see my signature. But the point I'm making is that they'll still exist; maybe not for the right purpose that means anything, but existance anyway.

I understand your point--you're just wording it a bit too far.

Z Man
June 3rd, 2003, 06:32 PM
I know they exist; I'm not stupid. But spiritually, they are dead.

Shaun
June 3rd, 2003, 06:42 PM
Ohhh, okay. I agree.

Shaun
who missed that memo

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 07:45 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
And you do a swell job at it!
Actually, that's my entertainment, not anyone else's. If others find my antics entertaining, more power to them. If not, go watch something else. :D

Zakath
June 3rd, 2003, 07:47 PM
Originally posted by Z Man
I know they exist; I'm not stupid. :think: Could have fooled some of us...


But spiritually, they are dead. That's nice, if you believe in "spirits"... :chuckle:

shima
June 4th, 2003, 05:05 AM
>>I'm just saying that to actually claim to be an atheist, one denies purpose in life. Life without a purpose can not exist....<<

Actually, life always HAS a purpose.
1) Aquire food to keep on living
2) Procreate to produce offspring

Lion
June 4th, 2003, 06:20 AM
Nova-I believe, from what you said earlier, that, yes, you were a Christian (a follower of Christ), when you were a child. Then at around the age of fourteen you decided that Christianity was “bunk” and chose not to be a Christian.

I will assume that you are an adult, beyond the age of twenty, now, and that you are no longer a Christian because you have chosen to not follow Christ.

I am a firm believer in the doctrine of eternal security. Once a person beyond the age of accountability (20 years old), accepts Christ, that person is sealed. You, however, although a Christian in that you followed Christ as a child, were never sealed because you were not yet at the age where God considers you old enough to enter into a permanent relationship.

You are now though, so perhaps you should really look at the evidence of whether the God of the Bible is real or not, with an adult’s understanding, instead of that of a fourteen year old.

You stated that when you tried to actually read the Bible, it helped to pull you away from Christianity. Why? What was it you read that convinced you it was false?

Z Man
June 4th, 2003, 09:23 AM
Originally posted by Zakath
:think: Could have fooled some of us...
:crackup: :ha: :chuckle: Yep, you are etertainment for me Zakath! Keep up the good work! :D