Carl Sagan: Pale blue dot

I thought you may all like this. It’s a great comic of our place in the universe inspired by a Carl Sagan and a picture of the earth, our home, taken by Voyager as it was cruising many miles away from home.

You will find

zenpencils.com

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You gotta give it to the god believers

In a post addressed to atheists, agnostics and other non-believers, one of the god believers wrote the comment below, which in my view, really shows they don’t understand the real issue really.  One, how does this person know that god has chosen not to do these things, what god are they speaking about? And no, we don’t blame god, neither do we hate god, all we do is lack a belief in the existence of any and only point out to the believers that their understanding of reality is quite skewed if on the one hand they hold their god is a loving and all-powerful god but still allows misfortune to visit them. That there is a contradiction in their belief system that they need to address without getting into any rationalizations. It is in fact arrogant to claim that god, any god, can’t be questioned. So this person thinks that the story he/she reads in the bible about god committing suicide to save us from himself is such a good story? No, far from it. How could a person, even if he lived and died several thousand years ago, have died for sins, whatever they are, that I am yet to commit? Why, if he already died do we still have to believe as a condition? How powerless is this god they worship?

Any god believers reading this, if your god exists, I don’t think it would be arrogant to question s/h/it decisions unless you imply that s/h/it is a malicious, capricious and vicious dictator whose writ is law and is beyond question. The next question would be does such a being deserve worship or fear and condemnation and if possible to be removed from position of authority?

It is arrogant to expect that God has to prove anything to anyone! He could do a lot of things, but He chooses not do them for a variety of reasons! People blame a God they either ignore or hate most of the time and then when something bad happens they expect He is going to save them from the crisis or disaster! God did more than enough for mankind when He allowed His only Son to die for our sin! We are not guaranteed a miracle or His intervention: that is not the basis for believing God!

Friends of Jesus, where are they when you need them?

I am not sure if this should be classified under entertainment. Here, is a man, who has gone to the Hague based court of Justice to have the court overturn the supposed ruling by one Pontius Pilate against one Jeebus, a man whose existence is a question of debate in the intellectual circles.

This person, really qualifies to be called silly person!

The intellectual poverty of modern atheism? Really?

First of all, yours truly wishes to apologise to friends and followers for the lack of posts during the week, I have been quite busy with building the nation, though I did manage to visit most of your blogs.

I need not introduce our resident apologist, Debilis, though he hardly honours us with a visit who has made it his blogging profession to erect strawmen of atheists and New Atheist, whoever they are, whom he then manages to convince his followers that he has made a sound against the claims of atheism. In this post, where, they have a long discussion with our friend the Ark, he sets out to tell his readers that atheists are intellectually poor.

He starts by telling us

Every reason I’ve ever been given to reject the arguments for theism rests on one of two demonstrably false assumptions:

1. That nothing exists other than the physical, or

2. That there is no way of knowing anything except via the senses (including science, of course).

Let us ignore, who has told him this and look at his claims. I would like him to prove the existence of anything else, other than those things, which are evidently the creation of our imagination or are the result of our interactions with one another then we will have a conversation. I would want him to show me and you, dear reader, any way of knowing, whatever he means by that, that excludes the senses. What are these things he knows without experiencing, excepting concepts which are creations of our imagination and history which we read?

Our apologists continues in the same vain to tell us

Those who demand evidence for theism are, so far as I’ve experienced, never open to non-sensory evidence. And those who attack the Bible as being bad science generally aren’t willing to acknowledge that it wasn’t written as science in the first place.

Let us say we are open to non-sensory evidence, which are these and would you be kind to enumerate just a few. And no, this is a strawman, we don’t claim the bible is a science writ. All we have said it was written by ignorant goat herders over a long period of time. It makes claims about the cosmos that aren’t true such as we are told in Joshua 10

“Sun, stand still at Gibeon,
and moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”
13 And the sun stood still, and the moon stopped,
until the nation took vengeance on their enemies.

Is this not written in the Book of Jashar? The sun stopped in the midst of heaven and did not hurry to set for about a whole day. 14 There has been no day like it before or since, when the Lord heeded the voice of a man, for the Lord fought for Israel.

unless of course our apologists wants to pretend that this is not a claim about cosmology which is a science or Balaam’s talking donkey or making wine from water.  So we grant him the bible is not a science book, neither is it a revealed word of deity, simply because such don’t exist, especially so the one claimed in the bible.

In defending his absurd position, our apologists writes

The first view is properly called “metaphysical naturalism”, “physicalism”, or (more casually) “materialism”. To believe this, one has to believe that nihilism is true, that thoughts are never about anything, that there is no reason at all why science works, that you can’t trust your own logic, and that you (in terms of your own inner life and personality) don’t actually exist.

Sad as it maybe for our apologist, life is its own meaning. To expect that there is more to it, some cosmic meaning is a fools dream. If you find nihilism too much to swallow, you are in the right profession, that of supporting superstition for fact. Here, I agree with Camus, who asks the million dollar question, what does one do after finding out that life is absurd? Does he commit suicide? He says no, rather he lives by rebelling against the absurd. He creates meaning in his life. The second claim about thoughts doesn’t make sense. I have read the post which is linked in the OP and, yours truly, was not able to make sense of it. He makes claims about free will which are absurd and nonsensical, the rest of his arguments are of like manner.

He then continues to say

This is the view that, while there might be more than the physical, we should only believe what we can test for scientifically.

which I don’t think is true. The requirement is as Hume said, not to believe anything for which we don’t have sufficient evidence and as Carl Sagan later said, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. So offer this evidence and we are good to go.

The first thing we should note here is that many of the same problems arise. This idea would force us to reject the idea that we have minds, that our morals are rational, and that our thoughts are either about anything or base their choices in logic. It is also deeply problematic that the basis of science itself is rejected by this view. “Science alone”, if one follows the logic, means “not even science”.

Minds are brain states. Unless of course the apologist thinks the mind is separate from the brain, our morals are rational because we are rational beings though this isn’t the case for a great majority of the human species and our thoughts are given by experience though we are also capable of abstract thought. And lastly am never sure what he means when he writes science. He leaves his claims so open such that it is impossible to identify what one is arguing against.

There is nothing to say about a claim such as this.

The second thing is that this view also contradicts itself. After all, there is no sensory evidence for it. So, by its own standard, it should be rejected.

Having created strawmen, he finishes by writing

The only way that modern atheism can hope to escape the absurd conclusions mentioned here is if it could offer an attack on the arguments for theism that doesn’t rest on one of those two assumptions.

which is another strawman, simply because atheism is only a claim about the existence of gods. The rest are philosophical positions which merit a different discussion each on its own to prove their falsity or truth value. The atheist says he has seen no evidence for the existence of gods, and that the theist has not proved his case sufficiently. He has no reason to provide any argument beyond that.

Some one please tell me am dreaming or I am reading what our christian want us to believe.

After years of encounters, I’ve come across no such thing. This leaves the arguments for theism on the table, with the attempted refutations having been shown to be circular reasoning.

Why are there still atheists? All you of you atheists should pack up your bags and identify a church to join, you are all wrong, the apologists have carried the day!

The only prayer you should be saying, if you must

I here below, teach you how to pray, if you must pray

O Nature: sovereign of all beings! and ye her adorable daughters, VIRTUE, REASON and TRUTH remain for ever our revered protectors: it is to you that belong the praises of the human race, to you appertains the homage of the earth. Shew, us, then, O Nature, that which man ought to do, in order to obtain the happiness which thou makest him desire. Virtue, animate him with they beneficent fire. Reason, conduct his uncertain steps through the paths of life. Truth, let they torch illumine his intellect, dissipate the darkness of his road. Unite, O assisting deities! your powers, in order to submit the hearts of mankind to your dominion. Banish error from our mind, wickedness from our hearts, confusion from our footsteps; cause knowledge to extend its salubrious reign, goodness to occupy our souls, serenity to dwell in our bosoms. Let imposture, confounded, never again dare to shew its head. Let our eyes, so long, either dazzled or blindfolded, be at length fixed upon those objects we ought to seek. Dispel for ever those mists of ignorance, those hideous phantoms, together with those seducing chimeras, which only serve to lead us astray, Extricate us from that dark abyss into which we are plunged by superstition, overthrow the fatal empire of delusion, crumble the throne of falsehood, wrest from their polluted hands the power they have usurped.

Command men, without sharing your authority with mortals, break the chains that bind them down in slavery, tear away the bandeau by which they are hoodwinked, allay the fury that intoxicates them, break in the hands of sanguinary, lawless tyrants, that iron sceptre with which they are crushed to exile, the imaginary regions, from whence fear has imported them, those theories by which they are afflicted.

Inspire the intelligent being with courage, infuse energy into his system, that, at length he may feel his own dignity, that he may dare to love himself, to esteem his own actions when they are worthy, that a slave only to your eternal laws, he may no longer fear to enfranchise himself from all other trammels, that blest with freedom, he may have the wisdom to cherish his fellow creature, and become happy by learning to perfection his own condition, instruct him in the great lesson, that the high road to felicity, is to prudently partake himself, and also cause others to enjoy, the rich banquet which thou, O Nature, has so bountifully set before him.

Console thy children from those sorrows to which their destiny submits them, by those pleasures which wisdom allows them to partake, teach them to be contended with their condition, to banish envy from their mind, to yield silently to necessity. Conduct them without alarm to that period which all beings must find, let them learn that time changes all things, that consequently, they are made neither to avoid it’s scythe nor to fear its arrival.

D’Holdbach in the System of Nature

The year that was

Friends, followers and all those who have been part of this blog, thank you very much and I hope we will continue to fly together. Yesterday we received a notification from WordPress that we have been flying for a year now. So we thank the good guys at WP

Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!

and we will keep it here. We, thanks to you have had over 20K visits, 5K comments, 500+ posts and still counting and we hope you will continue to honour us with your visits.

As a round-up, I will list some of the posts that yours truly liked.

Confessions which is a short narrative of where I have been

What happens after the death of god which was a reflection of what I have come to learn in the time I have been without gods

On morality which is a work in progress

Is the universe proof of god which was a rebuttal of an a formulation of the cosmological argument

Is science and religion compatible where my answer is a definite no

The things I believe is a work in progress

What’s in a name

I have also done a few book reviews, basically telling you what I liked about the books.

On the future of our educational institutions is not a review per se, but a link to the lectures by Nietzsche. This is for my friend

The god beyond belief which is a book on the problem of evil

What happened to the US of A is a review based on some speeches of Col Robert G. Ingersoll

and since it isn’t my intention to bore you, below are movies or music videos you may enjoy listening to

The lord of the rings complete symphony

Albert Einstein: How I see the world

and lastly the phantom of the opera.

Thank you very much friends, you have been great company!