ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

Information

ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

We debate origins of the Universe, life, Earth, humans, religion, atheism, using common sense, evolution, cosmology, geology, archaeology, and other sciences, to repel biblical creationism and other religious beliefs.

Location: Oxford University, England
Members: 4157
Latest Activity: 14 hours ago

The portrait is Charles Darwin, age 31, in 1840

We welcome comments and the opening up of new discussions in this busy group. So join us if you are not already in the group.

N.B. At the end of every discussion page is a box that you can tick if you want to be notified by e-mail about the arrival of fresh comments.

Discussion Forum

A Merry Newtonmas to You All on Atheist Nexus from Terry

Started by Dr. Terence Meaden. Last reply by Dr. Terence Meaden 21 hours ago. 6 Replies

Fossilized rod and cone cells

Started by Patricia on Wednesday. 0 Replies

Pope Severely Criticizes Vatican Bureaucracy

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Joseph P on Tuesday. 3 Replies

The Bible is not Great by Soren Sagan

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by sk8eycat on Monday. 18 Replies

Ebola Spreads to U.S.

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by John Jubinsky Dec 19. 10 Replies

Organic Material Found on Mars

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Patricia Dec 17. 1 Reply

Pope Says Animals go to Heaven

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Lemual Poot Dec 17. 24 Replies

Alzheimer's Reversed in Mice

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Loren Miller Dec 14. 2 Replies

Pope Says Animals go to Heaven

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Plinius Dec 11. 2 Replies

42,000 Year Old Flute

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Jay Stride Dec 10. 2 Replies

540,000 Year Old Artwork

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Dr. Terence Meaden Dec 9. 15 Replies

Hawking Likes Film on His Life

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Grinning Cat Nov 29. 3 Replies

Very Ancient Sharks Teeth Found

Started by Patricia. Last reply by Joseph P Nov 29. 3 Replies

Comment Wall

Comment

You need to be a member of ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN to add comments!

Comment by Marc Draco on February 5, 2009 at 3:58pm
As though experiment, so would I, but this is the interesting psychology, we have pretty indisputable evidence that life evolved (and a lot of other "proofs") - yet millions still think Goddit; and worse, think we're wrong just as we do them.
Comment by Dr. Terence Meaden on February 5, 2009 at 3:56pm
"clinching indisputable evidence of a god (any god) or even an afterlife, how many of us would refuse to see the evidence.>

Well, I for one would accept "clinching indisputable evidence" if it appeared. That is what scientists do.
But I am a strong-minded atheist because there has never been any sign of any evidence, let along "clinching indisputable evidence".
Comment by Marc Draco on February 5, 2009 at 3:31pm
Right on Don. I haven't read Harris on this but I agree that he sums faith up rather well. I'm having a fascinating debate with a "believer" over email and so far we've not had a cross word: which is amazing considering how these people often behave. I always think (and have even seen) that faith is a universal get out of jail free. I've a blog post on Gary Graham (of some Star Trek and JAG fame) is crying about abortion being murder and then admits to funding THREE! He's apparently got a conscience now but reading between the lines, it looks more like a failing actor trying for some adoration... which he's getting.

It's quite sickening to have such double-standards.

I can't imagine a theory of everything. Douglas Adams and I independently concurred on this but he put it rather better... I won't spoil this for everyone else though by explaining his view.

Psychologically though (in my book) I'm discussing the possibility that some people are genuinely unable to become atheists because years of programming won't let them.

This lady in my current email debate is a classic example - she just cannot see the arguments even when you spell them out for her. It's like she filters out everything that doesn't agree with what she's been told.

This is interesting, because I'd love to know if we're capable of doing the same thing.

For instance, if we suddenly got, clinching indisputable evidence of a god (any god) or even an afterlife, how many of us would refuse to see the evidence.

Of course, I'm being hypothetical, but it's an interesting thought experiment, don't you agree?
Comment by Dane Eidson on January 30, 2009 at 12:05pm
I book marked this site. It looks very interesting. I appreciate you informing me about it. Thanks for the invite and I am glad that I joined!
Comment by Alex Donovan on January 28, 2009 at 3:58pm
"But if I I may ask Claudia in her post here she states "In other words, Christianity can be a true religion, if it is a religion that centers on believing faith."

Claudia keeps using variations of the 'I don't understand science, therefore God exists' argument.
Standard 'God of the Gaps' stuff.
Comment by Richard Thomas on January 28, 2009 at 12:04am
As a newbie here I wish to tred carefully to avoid seeming to be too harsh about a subject since I have not fully followed the arguements presented.
But if I I may ask Claudia in her post here she states "In other words, Christianity can be a true religion, if it is a religion that centers on believing faith.

I wish to have her clarify just what the definition of faith is in this context so that I may correctly aware of the meaning of this sentence.
My aplogies for asking what may seem a self evident thing to you but I am sincerely wondering.
Comment by Marc Draco on January 27, 2009 at 11:49am
Claudia,

I am well aware of the view that atheism and theism are opposing sides of the same coin - the construction of the word atheism is indicative of a negative; cp. systolic and asystolic.

We can also compare deist/deism and theist/theism (both rooted similarly from Greek theos [god] and Latin deus [god] respectively). The theists (Christians, Muslims, etc.) think that their God pokes "his" nose into our affairs; the deists think that "god" created everything yet takes no interest; ironically, although this idea is no longer popular, it is closer to describing what we know: if we call the creation event, i.e. Big Bang, "god".

I fear I am unable to follow your argument from Barth's perspective - it reads like a typical self-referential theological parody that masks the void argument.

Beisdes, why should I care what Barth thinks? He operates from the perspective of a theist - one who has accepted Jesus as historical fact - and that makes him closed-minded, as this quote illustrates:

Though Barth made it possible for theologians again to take the Bible seriously, American evangelicals have been skeptical of Barth because he refused to consider the written Word "infallible" (he believed only Jesus was). Others gave up on Barth's theology because it overemphasized God's transcendance (to the point that some former Barthians began championing the "death of God").


While I strive not to be dismissive, it's difficult to see things through the eyes of the closed-minded, regardless of how cognisant the argument appears. Just because Barth was popular among his peers, doesn't make him right.

Marc
Comment by Marc Draco on January 26, 2009 at 7:18pm
No apology warranted - I do seem to get mistaken for other people though and that needles me. On the contrary, it is I who owes you an apology for being rather rude in the first instance; I wasn't entirely in balance and could have been less brusque.

You answered your own question, Claudia, when you state: "Pope Benedict XVI, who is widely considered, even by secular philosophers, to be one of the greatest theologian of Catholicism, is mistaken?"

The key is in the bit "theologian of Catholicism" - he is far less of a scientist than I am yet feels able to reach conclusions in fields as diverse as psychology and biology. As a theologian he is schooled in belief from the singular point of view that a monothestic God (as he sees it) is a masculine creator of all things.

More pointedly, if an expert knows more and more about less and less, the ultimate conclusion of his argument results in the Goddit gambit.

For a simpler proof (excuse my lack of cogent argument, it's late here) you might consider Pascal's Wager which is still used widely today (the Alpha Course is a good example) despite being thoroughly discredited.

Marc - (Draco is my surname)
Comment by Dr. Terence Meaden on January 26, 2009 at 8:11am
To Susan Lacroix
Thank you Susan.
This suggestion as to what may have happened before the Big Bang I simplified from the proposals of a major physicist Prof. Vic Stenger.
It is based on his thinking that uses currently-known quantum physics to suggest an answer. I sent my summary to him for him to check out, which he did. I expect other theoretical physicists to propose other answers as the century unfolds but this one is a good logical start ibecause of its use of existing knowledge of physics.
Comment by Alex Donovan on January 25, 2009 at 2:31pm
Fundamentalists like to say that it takes more faith not to believe in God than to believe in God. William of Ockham described the principle of parsimony. Basically it states that there is no cause to needlessly multiply entities. What this means is that if you have two explanations that fit a given phenomenon, the one that makes the least assumptions is usually the correct one.

Christians have one more assumption than Agnostics or Atheists. That is, they assume the existence of a God or Gods who created the Universe. Agnostics and Atheists make no such assumption. Facts do not require "faith" but assumptions do. Therefore the more assumptions you make, the more faith is required. Therefore it takes more faith to believe in Christianity than it does not to.
 

Members (4157)

 
 
 

Support Atheist Nexus

Donate Today

Donate

 

Help Nexus When You Buy From Amazon

Amazon

 

© 2014   Atheist Nexus. All rights reserved. Admin: Richard Haynes.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service