The other side





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Discus: College Confidential Café: 2004 Archive: The other side
By Henfour (Henfour) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 10:51 pm: Edit

After posting the religion thread, I feel inclined to post an argument against atheism. I have two examples.
First, atheism requires no intelligence. Fish and mice are probably atheists.
Second, atheism didn't help the Soviet Union very much.

By Lilmermaide (Lilmermaide) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 10:52 pm: Edit

im not an atheist but everyone has their own views. i dont understand why it requires no intelligence though. can you explain?

By Henfour (Henfour) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 10:54 pm: Edit

My assumption is that all life with sub-human intelligence does not believe in god.

By Lilmermaide (Lilmermaide) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 10:56 pm: Edit

i dont think animals count... people who dont believe in god obviously have a reason and have researched the topic.

By Justperfect (Justperfect) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 10:59 pm: Edit

i can say i am an atheist but i have intelligince. the main reason you believe in god is b/c of your parets and you dont want to go agaisnt them, also you do not want to go agaisnt the majority of the world by saying there is no god.even though you may not want to beleive this it is true and cant be argued against.and also you sound so stupid by your comment b/c it has no support and it makes you look like a total idiot

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 11:00 pm: Edit

Henfour, figures you'd use such a foolish argument against atheism.

I can make up a similar foolish one;

Pffft? Government! I feel inclined to post an argument against it; I have two examples of how it's bad:

First of all, people are always talking about freedom -- how can people have freedom if the government punishes them for doing stuff?

Second, government didn't help the Soviet Union very much.

By Lisasimpson (Lisasimpson) on Wednesday, July 21, 2004 - 11:13 pm: Edit

nice one, goodchocolate.

By Tdizzo (Tdizzo) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 01:28 pm: Edit

For real, many people who you'd define as atheists probably are just agnotic. I know in my case I certainly don't practice a religion or believe in A God...but I certainly don't believe that there ISN'T a GOd. Just beacause you can't define it doesn't mean you respect some form of higher power.

p.s. "First, atheism requires no intelligence" how can you possibly state that? That is one of the more ridiculous statements I have ever heard. For one, religion requires faith, not intelligence (no, I'm not calling anyone who follows a givn religion dumb). Faith can be had be even the most ignorant/stupid person around...heck, it's even easier to have faith if you're stupid/ignorant as you are more inclined to follow the the word of someone blindly. I know this comes off a little anti-religious (which I'm not) but it isn't meant to be...I just have a problem with people not respecting others.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 01:31 pm: Edit

Tdizzo, an atheist doesn't think "GOD DEFINATELY DOESN'T EXIST NO MATTER WHAT!"...

Agnostic = not sure if he thinks God exists or not and/or thinks both possibilities are equally likely
Atheist = doesn't believe God exists

By Craigk10 (Craigk10) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 02:32 pm: Edit

Wow ... I don't know what to say to that.

By Chavi (Chavi) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 03:05 pm: Edit

Personally, I find that atheists tend to be very intelligent. In fact, they're usually so intelligent that they feel they don't need God, or at least don't want to need Him. Intelligent people tend to be very good at rationalizing things to justify their own ends. I also used to wonder if people were religious out of fear, but after years of pondering the question, came to the conclusion that it is a much more frightful proposition to consider that there might be a hell and eternal damnation. Takes a lot of courage to admit that possibility. The saying goes, if you're religious and live life based on that, but in the end there is no God or eternity, then it doesn't really matter how you lived your life. But if you're an atheist and live your life based on that and discover in the end that there really is a God, then it REALLY matters. So why take a chance? But of course, that's way too simple-minded for most atheists.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 05:12 pm: Edit

Chavi, Pascal's Wager isn't too convincing.

Attacking Christianity gets repetative, so here are other reasons for my atheism:

-The idea of any ultimate creator existing is too farfetched to believe
-Nobody can give me a reason to be religious/believe in God except Pascal's Wager or some form of it
-I couldn't ever convince myself God is true, so I'd probably end up in hell anyway

By Vadim (Vadim) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 09:01 pm: Edit

" After posting the religion thread, I feel inclined to post an argument against atheism. I have two examples.
First, atheism requires no intelligence. Fish and mice are probably atheists.
Second, atheism didn't help the Soviet Union very much."

Breathing requires little to no intelligence. Therefore, all who breathe are idiots.
Christianity didn't help the Roman Empire very much either.
The reason why I am an atheist is precisely because I have spent so much time thinking about the Judeo-Christian worldview, that I am no longer able to see it in a different way from any other (equally unlikely) belief system. There are simply so many reasons why I find Judeo-Christian theism to be improbable and/or impossible, that I find it difficult to relate to people who believe in it.
I am not trying to offend anyone, but that is my perception of mainstream western religious belief, and that is the reason why I cannot follow it, regardless of any consequences. The problem with Pascal's wager is that I cannot choose to believe.

By Chavi (Chavi) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 10:20 pm: Edit

Why don't you try asking Him to convince you, if He exists. Problem with that request, though, is that you have to be prepared to accept Him if He convicts you.

By Steveruleworld (Steveruleworld) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 11:12 pm: Edit

Personally, i have huge respect for atheists. As JustPerfect mentioned, many people stay in a religion because of fear of rejection by parents. Atheists are able to overcome this. Also, Atheists who criticize religion are very beneficial becuase that criticism allows us to take a second look at what we believe. It also seems that many of the smartest people are atheists, yet that could lead to the same thing as with parental rearing...someone says they are atheist in order to seem smarter.

Nevertheless, there are some aspects of atheism that i cannot agree with and which i would like answers to.

If there is no god, then why have many religion's popped up in different cultures in ancient times that believed in a diety, despite huge spacial differences? If indeed there is no god then where does our conception of morality come from?

To me, it seems that being at least agnostic would make more sense.
Everything in the Universe is derived as a result of of another action. So if you take every action back all the way to the beginning there seems to have to be an ultimate cause.
If the universe is indeed expanding as is believed, then that means that the universe is not in effect infinite, and if something is expanding, there must be a chain of events causing this expansion, thus proving that down the line there must be some "uncaused cause".
This was brought up by Aquinas.

A second possible argument is the clockmaker. What are the chances that if you took apart all the pieces of a clock and dropped them together that they would fit in to place exactly, causing the clock to function as it would without some external intervention. This probablity is soo immensely low. Likewise think of the human race as a clock. what is the possibity that the chain of events that has occured up to this point forming both the human body and consciousness.
I'll agree this one has holes in it, but does bring up a point.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Thursday, July 22, 2004 - 11:29 pm: Edit

The clockmaker argument doesn't hold up because a God with the ability/materials to create a complex universe is a more complex thing than just a universe; the simpler something is, the greater the chance of it coming into existence "by accident". A Godless universe is simpler than one that's designed, so one that's designed is less likely to exist.

By Rachelvishy (Rachelvishy) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 01:07 am: Edit

To me, there is a difference between my religion and what I believe in. I love being Jewish- the ties to the community are enormous. But I pretty much have made up something of my own- outside of what humans before me have written in the Torah-which is why I am not an athiest. The most important thing is to think- and think a lot- but I'm not sure thinking 'logically,' so to speak, is the best way. For instance, roughly quoting Slaughterhouse-5, many people think time falls like beads on a string, one after another in chronological order- but I don't think this is the true. Because of feelings like this, which I cannot shake, I cannot believe in something out of logic. But, I am positive that to others, it is the opposite.

My point is (I was going to expose my ideas of god, but I think that is too raw to me to just type out,) you shouldn't be an automaton, believing in something just to imitate the actions of people around you. I think we should never stop thinking about our beliefs, even if we are athiests, or otherwise. There is no right or wrong answer, except one that you accept blindly.

By Gidget (Gidget) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 09:25 am: Edit

"After posting the religion thread, I feel inclined to post an argument against atheism. I have two examples.
First, atheism requires no intelligence. Fish and mice are probably atheists. "


How much intelligence does it take to follow in your parents footsteps and go toa building evey Sunday to be told what to think and believe ?

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 09:28 am: Edit

We've already agreed the first post was foolish; there's no need to keep addressing it.

By Jstanfie (Jstanfie) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 10:13 am: Edit

It seems as if the only logical answer to religion is to be Agnostic. Currently, the existence of God is something that we cannot completely prove or disprove; therefore, it is ignorant to choose either side.

However, human nature dictates a need for religion - this is evident both historically and personally for most people. To fulfil this need brings a feeling of completeness - bringing us to the saying "ignorance is bliss." It seems that the real question is whether you're willing to accept something thats both illogical and improbable in order to feel complete. If you decide not to, your life will most likely be filled with neverending questions - something that would make most people uneasy or unhappy.

I like to think of myself as someone who seeks truth. I'm Agnostic because I feel that if I chose one side or the other, I would be making a blind decision - thus jeopardizing my principles. Instead of religion, I've decided to just try to live a good life and do what I believe is right. If there is a God, it certainly can't penalize me for that - and if it does, it's not a God that I want to be associated with in the afterlife (assuming the existence of an afterlife).

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 10:15 am: Edit

I'm atheist because I don't think God exists. I'm not saying "There's no possibility of God existing" or "God definately doesn't exist". The chance of God existing is so tiny that it's not worth being agnostic ("I'm not sure if I think God exists or not" or "Either possibility is equally likely") about.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 10:19 am: Edit

However, human nature dictates a need for religion - this is evident both historically and personally for most people. To fulfil this need brings a feeling of completeness

No, it doesn't. Human nature dictates a need for basic questions to have fulfilling answers ("Why are we here?", etc.), but we don't need religion for that anymore. Historically religion was important because people had no other satisfying explanations for things, and an afterlife was important to believe in to keep them from being depressed with their miserable lifes.

Now we have science to answer our questions, and are pampered (perhaps too much) when it comes to getting our basic needs (food, shelter, etc.) met, so religion just ain't too important.

By Chavi (Chavi) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 01:46 pm: Edit

Jstanfie -

The reason people go to hell (pardon the expression) is because they choose to. They decide that they want God only on their own terms, and if not, to hell with him! Hell is therefore the absence of God. More than that, it is simultaneously realizing the awsome beauty and wondrous nature of God, and realizing that you will be forever deprived of it.

When your soul was created by God, it received a small glimpse of Him and longs to return to Him. Our intellect often gets in the way of our listening to that longing in our heart, because we sometimes get a little too full of ourselves. Yes, your intellect should guide your heart, but you still need to listen to that inner voice. Why do you think we have any innate sense of right and wrong? Where does our "conscience" come from? God put his imprint on us from the beginning of our existence. We are so much more than flesh and blood. Use your intuition here, not just logic. Try having conversations with Him, and when He starts answering you, you may have no choice but to listen.

If anyone's interested, I highly recommend the movie "Oh God!" starring John Denver and George Burns. It deals with the concept of God's existence in a very funny and powerful way.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 01:54 pm: Edit

Where does our "conscience" come from?

It's called socialization. It's why inner city kids can beat up people and steal and not feel guilty about it, but why most people on this board would feel horrible if they did things like that.

Kids with "unresponsive" parents are not socialized well, so they don't feel guilty when they do things that violate basic values.

By Apocalypse_Now (Apocalypse_Now) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 07:38 pm: Edit

Excellent point, Goodchocolate. We LEARN our sense of right and wrong, we are not born with it. If you raised a child in isolation with no human contact(put them in a padded room and essentially just slip food under the door), they would have no inherent sense of right or wrong if you then brought them out into the real world. Quite interestingly, they would have no belief in god either (although they might worship the crack at the bottom of the door, where their food comes from). That really shows how much our beliefs are influenced from those around us without our realizing it.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 09:36 pm: Edit

Apocalypse_Now, you're right to a certain point. In a primitive society, children have to be socialized *VERY* little (or perhaps not at all) because their society doesn't demand much from them. The concepts of right and wrong are cut and dry; don't kill anyone, be respectful to people (or to be more cynical, sell yourself as best as you can), etc. Right and wrong in its most basic form is innate; it's a survival mechanism. Sociobiology (the politically correct term is actually Evolutionary Psychology) makes a good case for this, but unfortunately it also defends race differences, sex differences, etc., so it's not a very well-known or progressive field (hopefully unraveling the human genome will change this).

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 09:43 pm: Edit

PS - I'm not suggesting unraveling the human genome is a good thing. But, it will help us understand differences among people & why they exist, and that it's foolish to blame the establishment for peoples success. Research in this field will help strengthen the conservative worldview.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Friday, July 23, 2004 - 09:51 pm: Edit

Sorry, I went off on a tangent there.

All that matters is that in MODERN society, kids have to be socialized a lot because they have no innate "guidance" to help them deal with all the unnatural complexities they see and use from day to day.

Kids who aren't socialized enough ("inner-city" kids) are only viewed by highly socialized people as angry, stupid, violent, etc. because they haven't been taught how to deal with modern society.

So, when dealing with some problems, you have innate (genetic) "guidance", but when dealing with others (those that are a product of modern society), your only guidance is what you've been taught (socialized to understand/deal with).

By Steveruleworld (Steveruleworld) on Saturday, July 24, 2004 - 01:29 am: Edit

THe other problem with the argument about socialization is that it brings into question free will. BF Skinner did a lot of research on conditioning, which is basically socialization. Your analogy with someone in a room is one of his arguments. In effect though, this means that what we do is not in fact something we can control, but rather a physical reaction based on our past experiences. This would also mean that right and wrong are only what we are trained to think.

The problem with this is that it is impossible to argue either way on socialization without creating a human rights violation. Basically you would have to put someone in a secluded environment for their lifetime without any human interaction meaning having a renewable source of food. But at the same time, without proving it wrong empirically you can't argue that there is no free will. But at the same time you can't prove it wrong without checking every aspect of a person's life and tallying up all stimuli that have happened to him/her.

So in effect, if religion and right and wrong are merely what we are socialized to think, then it would seem that human beings have no free will. But if we do have free will, then there is a flaw in the socialization theory.

By Apocalypse_Now (Apocalypse_Now) on Saturday, July 24, 2004 - 01:46 am: Edit

I believe in socialization to a certain degree. Ultimately, we have free will. We are able to make decisions. But we make these decisions based on evidence, what we know, rational thought, our values, etc. And I think our surrounding society plays a big part on such things as values and religious beliefs. So it does have some effect on a person's decision making, but not complete control.

By Missegg (Missegg) on Saturday, July 24, 2004 - 01:58 am: Edit

If you can whole-hearted believe in something, without questioning it, more power to you. I know that I can't. I can't be part of a religion that tells you to love thy neighbor, oh but not that gay couple over there...or that unwed mother. I was for quite awhile, but when I realized that...I couldn't be a part of it anymore. So I made up my own religion and it works fine for me. There's been so much wrong done in defense of this religion or that religion. Whatever happened to just getting along?

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Saturday, July 24, 2004 - 11:30 am: Edit

Steveruleworld, as silly as this may sound...I don't think psychologists have a good enough grasps of the effects of socialization. Nearly all think socialization determines how a person will turn out. They fail to realize that humans have innate behaviors and abilities. If you mentioned the same "in the room" experiment to people, and said you were going to do it to monkeys, almost all of them would think the monkey would act nearly identical to how it acts in the wild.

So, what about humans? Did we just loose all our instincts along the course of evolution? Almost all people would say yes because of the massive movement in the 60's and still today, but it makes no sense to think that. Now people have the wrong message about nature and nurture -- they think if someone is nurtured well, they'll turn out just as good as the next guy who was nurtured the same way, and vice-versa. That's also why "social injustice!" is a common excuse for a persons problems -- if a person is a rebel, etc., it's not his fault, but everybody else's since he wasn't brought up well.

There's also the argument (Freud's argument, actually), that all of our instincts are stifled by society -- again, this argument has been discredited by sociobiologists and the like. It makes no sense to think this, and it's awfully hypocritical of Freud to say this since Freud studied how people during the Victorian period who were deeply troubled as a result of trying to ignore sexual feelings. They were socialized too much, but still couldn't block an innate desire. Another example is how today's society pushes for anti-violence, anti-aggression, anti-meanness, etc. As a result, more and more people are finding activities like kick boxing to be "just what they need"; an outlet for aggression and violence.

By Chavi (Chavi) on Sunday, July 25, 2004 - 02:21 pm: Edit

What I'd really like to know is why, if you are convinced there is no God, you have any reason to abide by any set of moral behavior? I mean, beyond behavior that is necessary to do well in life financially or socially. For instance, if you could do cheat or lie and not get caught, and the lie or cheating could bring you great financial reward, why not? Seriously, I would like to know.

By Craigk10 (Craigk10) on Sunday, July 25, 2004 - 02:30 pm: Edit

We still have morals ... how and why they developed I have no idea if it was not religion but they are still there. If anything it's proof that morality and faith are not really mixed.

My answer personally is based on my own personal honor (kind of cliche I know) -- I don't do those things to get ahead for myself. It's the whole I want to earn it so when I look back I can do so with pride. I do not need a God to be judged by when I have myself -- there's no one more critical.

My question to religious people is whether you act morally because it's the right thing or for selfish reasons (i.e. go to heaven, etc.)?

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Sunday, July 25, 2004 - 02:37 pm: Edit

What I'd really like to know is why, if you are convinced there is no God, you have any reason to abide by any set of moral behavior?

Moral behavior prevents you from taking advantage of others people in some way or another; it's an undeniable fact of human nature that individual achievement leads to high self-esteem, and high self-esteem makes you feel good. Thus, when you achieve something without doing anything immoral, you know you did it because of your own abilities and efforts, and you feel good.

For instance, if you could do cheat or lie and not get caught, and the lie or cheating could bring you great financial reward, why not?

Knowing that my goals were only achieved by taking advantage of others and not by true individual effort would lead me to have terrible self-esteem.

Of course I do lie rarely, but everybody does.

By Apocalypse_Now (Apocalypse_Now) on Sunday, July 25, 2004 - 03:39 pm: Edit

Chavi, there ARE a lot of people who cheat, lie to get what they want.

By Chavi (Chavi) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 09:57 am: Edit

It still doesn't make sense logically that you would care one whit about personal morality. Why bother? Why would you esteem yourself more if you don't lie, cheat or steal? I thought we were all just some higher form of animal, acting purely out of our genetic makeup. You claim faith and morality to be separate, but what do you think faith grows out of? It grows out of our inner sense of morality. And you ask whether religious people behave morally out of fear of retribution or because it's the right thing. I would say initially and at heart, because it's the right thing. Oftentimes, the temptation is so strong that fear of retribution is the deciding factor. But a truly devout person with a strong relationship with God will act out of love and a desire to please God. But there's nothing wrong with that good old fear of eternal damnation. It's what can keep you on the straight and narrow when your animal desires overwhelm you.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 02:47 pm: Edit

It still doesn't make sense logically that you would care one whit about personal morality. Why bother?

I already said why...

"What I'd really like to know is why, if you are convinced there is no God, you have any reason to abide by any set of moral behavior?

Moral behavior prevents you from taking advantage of others people in some way or another; it's an undeniable fact of human nature that individual achievement leads to high self-esteem, and high self-esteem makes you feel good. Thus, when you achieve something without doing anything immoral, you know you did it because of your own abilities and efforts, and you feel good.

For instance, if you could do cheat or lie and not get caught, and the lie or cheating could bring you great financial reward, why not?

Knowing that my goals were only achieved by taking advantage of others and not by true individual effort would lead me to have terrible self-esteem.

Of course I do lie rarely, but everybody does."

By Craigk10 (Craigk10) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 03:04 pm: Edit

"I would say initially and at heart, because it's the right thing."

If that's the case then why is faith involved. You have kind of answered your own question.

Why does faith grow out of an "innner sense of morality"? You made the statement but said nothing beyond it. I don't know if it's true or not, but you just threw it out there without much more. Why does morality result in believing in God? It just doesn't make sense.

Are you trying to argue that because we act morally, we actually do believe in God or something to that effect?

By Chavi (Chavi) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 03:20 pm: Edit

Yes. I've said it before. Our sense of morality is based upon our soul's early knowledge of its Creator. We know what real Love is, and have a natural longing for it. That's what makes you feel good about yourself when you "do the right thing". It goes beyond socialization. Even the most anti-social thug in the ghetto has a primitive sense of right and wrong, and certainly a longing to be loved.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 03:23 pm: Edit

Even the most anti-social thug in the ghetto has a primitive sense of right and wrong, and certainly a longing to be loved.

"Right and wrong in its most basic form is innate; it's a survival mechanism."

By Calidan (Calidan) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 06:23 pm: Edit

My sense of morality is imposed on me by the society in which I live, and by the values with which I was raised. I could have been raised in a society in which killing was morally okay, and thus I never would have questioned it. It has nothing to do with "my soul's early knowledge of its creator," but rather with what I know is the right thing to do.

Furthermore, how do people who are so strictly devout (to any religion) justify killing others through faith to their religion? I am fairly sure that killing in any religion is not okay.

Also, one thing that has never made sense to me about Christianity: if Adam and Eve were the first two people on the earth, and they had only two sons, where did everyone else come from? Think about that for a while...

By Chavi (Chavi) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 07:48 pm: Edit

Well, well. Seems we have a conundrum here. Craig says he doesn't need anyone to tell him right from wrong, and Calidan says his sense of right and wrong is imposed on him by society. Calidan, just take a look at some of the Muslim societies. You have quite a mixture. Many people there are raised to believe it is ok to kill infidels, yet not all of them condone it. Just because I say we have an innate sense of right and wrong doesn't mean it can't be suppressed or contorted somehow. Our conscience needs to be nurtured and educated and formed in order to be perfected. As the Pope says, "Believers can have more than a little to do with the rise of atheism. To the extent that they are careless about their instruction in the faith, or present its teaching falsely, or even fail in their religious, moral, or social life, they must be said to conceal rather than to reveal the true nature of God and of religion."

I'm not saying we are born knowing all right from wrong. We humans simply have a sense that some things are good and some aren't. We have a sense of shame. We are born with these senses, but they can certainly become dull or twisted. When you ask about religious people justifying killing through their faith, we are all capable of rationalizing with our intellect to justify doing what we want to do. I'll bet quite a few of you atheists have rationalized your way into believing that abortion is justified killing. You say you know right from wrong, but your pride blinds you. Or, in your case, you seem to be saying you don't care about right from wrong. Which brings us to the age-old question, what is truth? Is there truth out there, somewhere, or does it change from one person to the next?

And about Adam and Eve, who says they ONLY had two sons?

By Appliedmath (Appliedmath) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 07:54 pm: Edit

I don't believe in God and I scored a 1500 on the SATs, apparently I don't have sub-human intelligence

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 08:23 pm: Edit

We humans simply have a sense that some things are good and some aren't. We have a sense of shame.

Sociobiology has the answers to your "proof" of God.

Seems we have a conundrum here. Craig says he doesn't need anyone to tell him right from wrong, and Calidan says his sense of right and wrong is imposed on him by society.

Unfortunately, most people are drawn to atheism for its emotional appeal. It makes them feel cool and rebellious.

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 08:39 pm: Edit

Like how vegetarianism makes me feel. Oh, and I never found out, but are you a guy, Goodchocolate?

To ensure that this post isn't frivolous: And how does sociobiology have "the answers to your 'proof' of God"? I'm just curious. I only know basic things about sociobiology (inherited behavioral thingies).

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 08:52 pm: Edit

Oh, and I never found out, but are you a guy, Goodchocolate?

I'd rather not say, but it should be obvious; if it's not, one of my posts will reveal it sooner or later. :)

To ensure that this post isn't frivolous: And how does sociobiology have "the answers to your 'proof' of God"? I'm just curious. I only know basic things about sociobiology (inherited behavioral thingies).

Chavi is talking about our innate sense of Right and Wrong; how we just "know" certain things and how certain things just "feel right" and "feel wrong". Someone could argue Right and Wrong is just what we think as a result of socialization, but it's not too convincing since many "inner city" kids and kids in primitive societies are barely socialized. Sociobiology argues in favor (with evidence) of innate behaviors, tendencies, and feelings -- these would include a basic sense of Right and Wrong that's enough to let us "know" certain things and get a "feel right" or "feel wrong" about certain situations. From observing monkeys and some other mammals you can tell even they have a basic idea of what's right and what's wrong. This all may sound silly, but if you look at each of the most basic moral principles you can see a clear evolutionary benefit of each.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 08:59 pm: Edit

Also, it may seem ridiculous to even consider thinking a basic sense of Right and Wrong is innate, but a close look at "simple" animals and their life-cycles (e.g. butterfly) reveals just how much behavior is innate.

By Craigk10 (Craigk10) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 08:59 pm: Edit

Wait ... are you saying that I am athiest (actually agnostic) because I want to be some sort of rebel. If so, that's way off base. I might be wrong about where I get morality, but that certainly is not the origin of my religious beliefs or lack thereof.

By Calidan (Calidan) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 09:46 pm: Edit

"And about Adam and Eve, who says they ONLY had two sons?"

Ummmm... the Bible? They were not the ONLY children of Adam and Eve, but they were the FIRST children. Their names were Cain and Abel. Their next son was Seth. Hmmm... still all boys. If you can't tell, I am alluding to the incestual relationships that must have taken place here.

Interestingly enough, Cain actually murdered Abel. They weren't Muslim, and Abel wasn't an "infidel" and I don't think they were taught that it was okay to kill, so why did this happen?

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Monday, July 26, 2004 - 11:55 pm: Edit

Adam and Eve are metaphors, you silly people. Metaphors for life!

And Goodchocolate! I think we may agree on this issue. :)

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 12:01 am: Edit

Oh, wait, nevermind.

By Chavi (Chavi) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 10:12 am: Edit

Calidan -

Because we also have free will and often choose to do evil to get what we want.

By Calidan (Calidan) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 07:15 pm: Edit

Hmmmm... beating around the bush, eh?

Out of Adam and Eve's sons, one of them must have had a sexual realtionship with Eve, since she is the only woman. How can anyone trust a religion that promotes the idea of everyone being born out of incest? Furthermore, if this myth was true, wouldn't we all be terribly deformed?

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 08:18 pm: Edit

Well, no, Calidan. This is primarily due to deformations resulting only if there is a family history of such problems. Offspring begotten through incest are more likely to have disorders/deformations if there is family history of them. For example, if some of people's relatives/ancestors have been born with webbed feet, it's more statistically possible that an offspring through incest will have it because they share the same gene pool.

With Adam and Eve, their genes were relatively pure and lacked the mutations to bring about such "deformations," since, you know, they were the "ideal" humans, in theory and in physical structure.

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 08:19 pm: Edit

But that, of course, is predicated on the fact that Adam and Eve were actual people, which is highly unlikely.

By Calidan (Calidan) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 10:17 pm: Edit

But then if everyone comes from Adam and Eve (who were "perfect," as you say), then why does incest result in deformations now? If everyone originates from Adam and Eve, shouldn't there be no "family history" of problems?

By Lucifersam (Lucifersam) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 10:29 pm: Edit

As for now I am sure how to reply to the subjects that the latter part of this thread have brought up, but I do have something to say in regards to the suggestion in opposition to the OP, that "Well, actually, most atheists are very smart" and a few other issues that were mentioned but not addressed.

First of all, although one of my best and most intelligent friends is an atheist, in my experience she is the exception. Most of the atheists I know are simply following what most of their "goth" friends believe and tend to use the cliche' that "organized religion is stupid and conformist".

Steveruleworld states that an atheist's questioning of religion is also beneficial, because it helps others to take a second look at things. Yes, of course that may be true in some ways, but on the same token I could say that those who drive 75mph on a 35mph road are beneficial because they force those who follow a very sensible law to take a second look at that law.

According to JustPerfect, the reason I myself am not an atheist (although I admit I sometimes lean a bit towards semi-agnostic and "unique" beliefs) is because of my parents. However, my parents nowadays do not seem to really give a damn what I believe to even the slightest degree when it comes to religion.

Tdizzo states, that "religion requires faith, not intelligence". Although in a certain sense this is true, it also must be acknowledged that if one professes any religion, and that person professes this religion somewhat independently (As in not simple blind and foolish faith), this in itself requires intelligence to assess the possibility of a "higher power", and it also does not require intelligence to simply deny that something exists, given that this denial is brought about without entirely objective analysis.

There are many other points I could comment on, but for now I will leave it at that.

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 11:18 pm: Edit

Most of the atheists I know are simply following what most of their "goth" friends believe and tend to use the cliche' that "organized religion is stupid and conformist".

I didn't say it like that, but I did mean it like that. :)

They say stuff like "Why would God let people suffer?" and "Why would God make my life so miserable?" to justify their atheism. It pisses me off. >:-O

By Tongos (Tongos) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 11:25 pm: Edit

oh, goodchocolate, sorry about my disrespectful posts on the iq thread a couple days ago. sorry about what i said. I really should have been more mature about it.
I just hope that I'm not disrupting this thread too much.
that's all i wanted to say!

By Goodchocolate (Goodchocolate) on Tuesday, July 27, 2004 - 11:27 pm: Edit

...:)...??

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 12:04 am: Edit

But then if everyone comes from Adam and Eve (who were "perfect," as you say), then why does incest result in deformations now? If everyone originates from Adam and Eve, shouldn't there be no "family history" of problems?

*recent* family history, there, buddy. As in, within a few generations... not the hundreds that exist now.

By Calidan (Calidan) on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 12:21 am: Edit

But if they were "perfect" then there should never be deformations at all!

Incest is wrong, no matter what context you put it in.

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 12:33 am: Edit

I'm not justifying it, though. I don't even think Adam and Eve literally existed. And they obviously werne't perfect; they were just without bodily deformation. Only God is capable of being perfect, and perhaps a few humans.

By Jenesaispas (Jenesaispas) on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 12:34 am: Edit

I merely responded to the claim that, "wouldn't we all be horribly deformed."

By Chavi (Chavi) on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 01:42 pm: Edit

I think Adam and Eve actually existed. But I also believe they had daughters, who had children with their brothers. Incest was not outlawed by God until later, after the earth was populated. After all, in the time of Abraham, people were taking their first cousins in marriage.

By Calidan (Calidan) on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 11:04 pm: Edit

This thread is dumb, as are people who don't question the validity of their faith.


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