Atheist unite!!

bellbird

Sponsor
oh well it's better that way
Yep, agree completely. And better according to whom?

I like to think that the people advocating for this god don't actually think, themselves, that the world in where there is all this suffering is better than one in which that wasn't the case, if we're using human wellbeing as a measure for what makes a "good" world.

That they could only be thinking that because of their indoctrination. Surely so.

So then it must be according to god that a world full of suffering is better.

Indoctrination is so f*cking sad.
The things that theists will argue for, or defend, on behalf of their god, blows my mind.

For instance...
Matthew 18
19“Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”

So you're telling me that literally no two Christians have ever come together to pray about any of these things?
Eradicating covid-19, and every other disease for that matter, this instant?
Restoring limbs to amputees?
Solving the world's hunger, water and homelessness crises?
Ending the need for war?

I mean I guess not, right? After all, this is the word of god, and the passage is pretty unambiguous.
And yet they'll still find an excuse, despite all of the mega churches that congregated in the pandemic to pray it away and ended just facilitating the spread further.

My thoughts are probably quite scrambled as I only got a couple hours sleep last night.

But yes, religion is definitely irrational, frustrating, destructive, and full of so many damn holes to pick them cherries through.
 

internal

Sponsor
That they could only be thinking that because of their indoctrination. Surely so.
my impression of having spoke with so many indeviduals that belief this type of thing. is that they tend to believe that "at some point" the suffering will cease and that it will all have had a grand meaning. that makes all the suffering that had happened before hand, justifiable.

that all the war and famine and things will usher in a new era of such peace and prosperity that we cold not even under stand. and it would be this mythical and supernatural happiness. which to me that sounds insane. because it essentially says that there is justifiable suffering. which is what most christians seem to believe. this concept of sin and punishment and what not that pervedes the literature is indecative of that.

the reality is that all suffering is bad and even if it led to paradise it would still be bad. you can't just erase all the impact of the suffering you did. it's like a parent beating their child for their own good. maybe the child grew up to be a doctor. it doesn't make beating them correct. it just makes it something you did.

but of course unfortunetely that what happens is that in these arguments which are less of a person's personal believes as they are coming at you and trying to convince you of things, that they are not rational people. i don't have much problem with individual religious people. but being told that "god has a plan for me" and "it all worked out and god looked after you because you have a beautiful family!"

like, shut up? can you f*cking behave yourself? just shut up. please leave. if god were looking after me he would have send a bolt of lightning to my family to fry them from the inside out from the first moments i was born. god is not responsible for my success. i am. "but god isn't a vending machine-" no, he isn't, and that's exactly, exactly what that argument supposes.

that god as he is conceptuelized is not here to help us. that the suffering we endure is purposeful and justifiable. and any being who claims that, is sadistic. any being who says that suffering is important, is a sadist, because that is what sadistic people value. so "god loves us" must logically be f*cking bullshit.

and that calls into question every other supposition that has ever been made. on top of it just being plainly and linearly ridiculous.
 

enough

MyPTSD Pro
I think the whole religion in spite of the lack of proof is pretty easy to understand.
Religion satisfies the basic human desires.
It's the same burden we all carry, our unquenchable desire to survive and reproduce.
As atheists, we try to understand our situation in terms of our relationship with the world, our place in the food chain, our responsibility to help the species, save the planet, listen to science, and fit in with other people for the most part. It ties in with our lizard brain and fight/flight, all of it. It is Basic Human Nature. This same BHN causes some of us to go beyond what we see and hear with our own eyes and ears, beyond what we have grokked with our own brains and toss all of this to the wind and believe the thoughts someone else wants us to believe for whatever reason. How wonderful, to tie up all of our hopes and fears and vulnerabilities and unsatisfied desire to be accepted and loved and get to reproduce and have help with survival all in one bundle that we pick up once a week at the religious organization of our choice.
I have to think that at some point, every member of every church has been faced with the same lack of faith that made us atheists turn and go another direction. Hell, if there weren't churches, there wouldn't be atheists, just people following their BHN. Same goes the other way, if there wasn't a very common to us all tendency to doubt this stuff, there wouldn't be churches or atheists, just informed citizens with such a strong belief in the obvious prescence of a benevolent god that was plain to see and without doubt. But there are churches and there are atheists and this dichotomy proves that there is doubt and I have to think that there is doubt in the minds of all of the church people too, at some point. They just think that the easiest path to eternal survival and the ability to keep a place in their society and reproduce and watch their kids do the same overpowers their doubts and they take the easy way.
Keep the faith my brethren, keep the faith ( I should say the lack of faith and the insatiable desire to understand our world and appease our BHN the hard way). So it goes.
 
I had to put a few members here on ignore because, for crying out loud, they are talking about how the covid vaccine is a big scam and covid itself isn't real. I guess I'm happy that so far they and their families haven't gotten it (or have but were asymptomatic).

Has health care always been this political? It's sheer idiocy. But the issue may be that covid doesn't have much of an effect on children. I wonder if they'd be so cavalier with their lives and the lives of everyone around them if, say, being a covid denier meant a lifetime in an iron lung for their kids.

What a crazy time we live in. So many people think that science is fake, that YouTube is a better news source than Reuters, and that Nazis are the good guys.
 

enough

MyPTSD Pro
I always thought that the flat earth society was a kind of social club based on a common tongue in cheek sense of humor, but no- they don't think the earth is round.
Based on my experiences, I can't argue the point because I have never set out travelling due East on the equator to see if I arrived at my departure point. We all choose what to believe and think that our sources are the correct sources because.......they back up what we already believe.
I think we may be getting to a point where all the anti vacciners out there will know of someone that got it because of the lack of a vaccination, and out of 10 people that they know maybe one died or went to the hospital and carries a long term effect from it. I wish it werent what was necessary to convince the anti vaccine people, but some of us have to set out on that easterly course before we will be convinced of something counter to what we already believe.
If, say, someone can garner some political capitol by spouting the info they all want to hear, well thats the way of the world.
Just think what you could do if you were selling the idea that you could provide eternal life in a wonderful place with all of your friends......what could you get by selling that?
 

bellbird

Sponsor
We all choose what to believe and think that our sources are the correct sources because.......they back up what we already believe.
I don't think we choose our beliefs.

I didn't choose to believe that the earth is round. I believe it because I see the evidence (photos from the ISS/ other missions, the fact no one has ever fallen off the edge of the earth, the fact that we know we live in a universe full of solar systems where spherical things orbit other spherical things).

Same with religion. I didn't choose to be an atheist. I was simply raised without religion, and have as of yet been unconvinced of the existence of any gods. There have for sure been times, especially when I've lost loved ones, where I wished there was some afterlife so I could see them again, but I knew that wish was only fleeting and I didn't really believe it.
 

siniang

MyPTSD Pro
We all choose what to believe and think that our sources are the correct sources because.......they back up what we already believe.

I didn't choose to believe that the earth is round. I believe it because I see the evidence

And this right there is part of the major problem in the entire discussion of religion/anti-religion, science-denial etc.

One does not believe in science.

You trust science. But it has nothing zero nada to do with 'belief'.

Yes, some science is still in the 'theory' phase. We may not yet have enough factual evidence or any evidence to support the theory. But ...
One of the major principles of science is that scientific hypotheses must be falsifiable. Please read: Falsifiability - Wikipedia

Whereas religion is not. "God exists" is impossible to prove or disprove.

This is where the 'belief' component comes in. A non-falsifiable theory must be believed, because you readily accept that you will never know 10000%. A falsifiable theory is based on evidence but you know and accept that it may turn out to be false with new data.

Another major component of science is replication. Repeated experiments, observations, ... need to support the hypothesis for it to remain 'true'.

Science is self-correcting.

Whereas belief is not. It's not questioned. It's accepted as truth. And it's not open for correction.

Are scientists prone to observation bias (aka, 'they back up what we already believe) just as everyone else? Absolutely! But hence the underlaying mechanisms of self-correction.

And sorry, but 'naked data' has nothing to do with 'choosing sources we think are the correct ones'.

(btw., most scientists are very careful with wordings like "we know xyz". Because we don't. Because falsification. It's "the current evidence points to xyz".)

Science doesn't claim 'absolute truth'. Belief, however, does.

Please don't say 'I believe in science'. Because you don't. (religious/spiritual/...) belief and science don't follow the same mechanisms.
 

bellbird

Sponsor
One does not believe in science.

You trust science. But it has nothing zero nada to do with 'belief'.
What is your definition of belief?

For me a belief is something that I am convinced is true. (Which is also why I was saying I don't think we choose our beliefs -- we just become convinced of things through evidence. Sometimes that's good evidence, sometimes that's poor evidence).

I don't believe *in* science (and I also didn't say that I did -- just that I believe, i.e. am convinced of the truth that the earth is round/not flat), but scientific evidence does inform my beliefs. I don't leave my house through the second storey window in the morning because the evidence informs my beliefs and my beliefs inform my actions that that isn't going to end well.
 

siniang

MyPTSD Pro
Do you believe the earth is round (because someone has told you so)?
Or do you "know" the earth is round based on your own observation/factual evidence (that's been replicated again and again)?

Do you believe there is gravity (because someone has told you so)?
Or do you "know" there is gravity based on your own observations/factual evidence (that's been replicated again and again)?

Language is important.

Using the same word to describe two completely different processes involved coming to an conclusion implies, the two processes carry the same weight, are comparable, equally valid.

And that's not only not true, that's problematic.

For one, when people say they "believe in science thisorthat", when then someone says "I belief xyz[insert your favorite conspiracy theory or religious claim]" it implies it's undergone the same thorough scientific method. Which in 99% isn't the case.

But it also allows (religious) people to discredit 'factual evidence' because when they believe something, there is none of those, hence factual evidence supporting scientific theories/findings/... is meaningless as it doesn't add anything to the conclusion, in their minds.

Of course we don't conduct every and all science ourselves. We mostly have to trust what others (scientists) are telling us is true.

When you follow a belief, you take what your specific book of worship, your religious or cult leader, or ... proclaim at face value. It's not questioned. You don't request evidence. The elements of the belief aren't challenged and constantly checked and re-checked whether they still hold true.

When scientists present their results, it's undergone thorough examination. Evidence was collected. It was evaluated against different hypotheses aka explanations for the observed data/patterns, it's undergone peer-review etc. And even after it's become published, after it's become 'knowledge', even sort of 'truth', it's constantly re-evaluated whether new data still supports it.

When you ask a religious person for evidence of god you often get responses of the 'I just know' kind. When you ask a scientist for evidence for a hypothesis/conclusion, they are able to provide tangible evidence/facts/data that can be checked by you and others and should be replicable.

Therein lies the difference between 'believing' and 'trusting evidence-based conclusions' (which for easiness is usually abbreviated with 'knowing' in everyday life). They're just not the same thing.
 

bellbird

Sponsor
Language is important.
For sure. Which is why I asked what your definition of belief was.
Do you believe the earth is round (because someone has told you so)?
So your definition of belief is a position you hold because someone has told you so?

I don't even think that's true for many theists. Particularly the subset of theists who were raised atheist and then converted -- they weren't told as a child that there was a god; they had an experience at an age when they could think for themselves and it led them to become convinced that a god exists.

People have all sorts of reasons for believing in things, some are just better reasons than others.
Using the same word to describe two completely different processes involved coming to an conclusion implies, the two processes carry
Again, I never used the word to describe the process. I didn't say "I believe in science" nor on the contrary "I don't believe in religion" (because science or religion aren't things you believe in).

It's merely:

1. I have been presented sufficient evidence to suggest that if I leave my house from the second storey window, it will not end well for me. The evidence is sufficient, and therefore I accept the proposition, and therefore that is a belief I hold.

2. I have not been presented sufficient evidence to suggest that there is a god. The evidence is insufficient, and therefore I do not accept the proposition, and therefore that is not a belief that I hold.

If the evidence is really strong (as with the second storey window example), then I have a high degree of confidence in my belief, and so hold a position of knowledge of what will happen to me without needing to test it for myself. And yeah, in science we don't typically use the word "know", but in this instance I am using it because of how high my confidence is in my belief (and how bad I am at flying).
 

enough

MyPTSD Pro
A geology professer I know had a great way of explaining his lack of conviction about some of the theories that he and his cohort put up as scientific theories. His one quote that I remember well and try to put to use: " If I hadn't believed it I wouldn't have seen it".
Be careful when you have half a theory and are looking for things to back it up. You won't be looking at things to tear it down and you need to be.
 
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