Stumping atheists

If god didn’t create atheists, who did?

Maybe you are a catholic or a christian and are confused about evolution. You don’t know whether to reject it outright or to reject genesis. The Roman church has a solution for you. Following Augustine and other church fathers, church tradition recognizes that Genesis uses figurative language and as such cannot be a scientific text that rules out human evolution altogether.

If you had worn your dancing shoes after reading the above paragraph, just remove them. The same church specifically rejects the conclusions of Darwin which insist that evolution was the result of random forces. To the church, evolution is only acceptable if it is guided by an intelligent designer, god. The church having warned scientists to avoid pretentious claims that are beyond the realm of inquiry goes ahead and tells us god could have created human bodies through evolution but immediately created their souls at the moment of conception. How do they know this?

To justify its continued existence, the church then tells us the fall as recorded in Genesis was a real event in time ( curious people want to know the date and place). And following this fall, everyone contracts a sin, original sin, at birth. This hereditary blemish can be cleansed if you get the right baptism, the catholic one. However, this baptism leaves you with some spiritual and moral weaknesses that can only be overcome through god’s grace.

Just in case you are wondering whether Jesus inherited this blemish, he wasn’t because through some god magic, Mary was also born without it.

Any one in business who wants to reap where they didn’t saw for 100 of years if not thousands should follow the model of the church. Tell the people they have a defect. Be the only supplier of the remedy. Embed yourself in their lives, from the cradle to the grave. And make sure they are told about your product before they reach the age of reason and you will be laughing all the way to the bank.

Have a sinful weekend everyone, especially those who were not baptised. Your original sin is still intact.

Why can’t we see god?

This author argues it is because she wants us to choose to love her and to protect our freewill. This argument doesn’t hold unless the proponent can show that in the many narratives involving god showing up for bbq, that the people she interacted with had no freewill. If Adam and Eve had god immediately in their presence and still had room to eat the fruit, which among other things, god needed not have told them about its existence, then the argument about fear is moot. It doesn’t hold any water.

Christians, some of them, insist Jesus is God. If this is true, then what do we say about the disciples? Was it their fear of hell that kept them with Jesus? Didn’t god know this? The same Christians, who believe in trinity, tells us the spirit is god and it is with us. How is this then squared with the claim god doesn’t show herself because if that happened we wouldn’t love her?

I say we can’t see god the same way we can’t see Santa. God(s) so far as I can tell have no existence out of the human mind. This, to me, is the most likely answer. What gods are is unknown to us. What they look like is unknown to us. Besides, we have apologists tell us god is spirit, is without form and all that makes it way impossible for us to see such a being given we lack the necessary apparatus to see spirits.

It is absurd to suggest that a being desirous of having a relationship with you would seek to do this by hiding. What relationship is that even? A delusion?

For those interested in further reading, In defense of William Rowe’s Evidential argument from evil by Nick Trakakis, makes for good reading on the different arguments that apologists have advanced to defend divine hiddenness.

On free will

I know some of you are about to say, not again, but indulge me a bit. This will not be long.

I have seen a species of arguments that goes something like if god is omniscience, then we can’t have freewill as an argument against freewill but I think this line of argument is mistaken. Unless of course god determines or directs our actions, then we are puppets in a cosmic game that we don’t know its purpose.

But the omniscience of god still poses a problem for the problem of evil. God knows what we will do and in her godliness decides that it is best to let the baby be raped and the mother hacked to death to satisfy some cosmic ends.

It would be possible, in my view, to retain freewill and gods omniscience. Only thing is that we can not alter the future. It is determined unless god is misguided. This is all so confusing.

For avoidance of doubt, I am still a freewill and god skeptic. I am this morning attempting to be the devil’s advocate.

Have a confused Monday, will you and if you are Chinese, Happy New Year.

Belief has no place where truth is concerned

God does not exist
Does god exist?

These two videos speak to the same topic. I hadn’t heard of Prof Peter Millican before this, but I like him. He is eloquent. As for Krishnamurti, I have read some of his works and I agree with some if not most of it. The two videos will take a max of 35 minutes but you will thank me for days for contributing to your education.

Enjoy

created sick, commanded to be sound

The poem below by Baron Brooke serves as an answer to this

O wearisome condition of humanity!
Born under one law, to another bound;
Vainly begot and yet forbidden vanity;
Created sick, commanded to be sound.
What meaneth nature by these diverse laws?
Passion and reason, self-division cause.
Is it the mark or majesty of power
To make offenses that it may forgive?
Nature herself doth her own self deflower
To hate those errors she herself doth give.
For how should man think that he may not do,
If nature did not fail and punish, too?
Tyrant to others, to herself unjust,
Only commands things difficult and hard,
Forbids us all things which it knows is lust,
Makes easy pains, unpossible reward.
If nature did not take delight in blood,
She would have made more easy ways to good.
We that are bound by vows and by promotion,
With pomp of holy sacrifice and rites,
To teach belief in good and still devotion,
To preach of heaven’s wonders and delights;
Yet when each of us in his own heart looks
He finds the God there, far unlike his books.

The author of the linked post asks

Created, as we have been, in the image of God, and endowed with the faculties of intellect, emotion and will, and possessing a moral sense; at the same time we are capable of enormous cruelty and injustice. Sometimes the question is asked, Why would a good God allow bad things to happen? The real question, however, is why do we as human beings do bad things, when we should know better?

And I think s/he asks the wrong question. Why such an outcome if we are the work of an all-knowing, powerful and loving god? It would be asking why a code behaves badly if it was coded by genius? Should we not investigate the source of the code and not the code? And in the case of men, the problem is really with a maker, if you posit a deity. Man, the only animal with a moral sense. Man the sad animal.

Next s/he writes

What began as good is now ruined, the result of moral rot and decay. What a sad commentary on human existence!

which again should be rewritten to What a sad commentary on god’s handiwork!

It is interesting what passes apologists give their gods. It seems we demand more from our fellows than apologists ever demand of their gods.

This one left me in stitches. The author thinks presenting an argument would take the place of evidence. In effect, an argument for fairies is all that is needed to believe a fairy is real.

Is there a god

On my friend Ark’s blog there is a discussion or is it a narrative on where the burden lies in the god debate. And I generally agree with him. However, I think, and our late friend *my atheist life* would agree, we can say there is no god and the burden of proof doesn’t switch to us. Why so, you might ask, first, no coherent definition of a god has been provided that would demonstrate such a being(s) would exist. There are contradictory attributes of alleged gods that such beings are unlikely to exist. Whether such beings are necessary and in what manner of existence they are to exist have not been demonstrated. And attempts have been made to do this.

I know my empiricist friends wouldn’t commit themselves to such a statement arguing, among other reasons, new evidence may convince us otherwise. That is all fair. But until this evidence is adduced, we have nothing to go on with and as the good priest Jean Messlier wrote, to believe in God(s) is to believe in a chimera with no parallel in experience.

But I could be wrong

You need god for mental health

So says Scientific American especially in these times of covid related depression. I don’t know what you heathens are gonna do.

I am not convinced though. I think for some, their recovery is delayed because they have been convinced by their therapist their situation is complicated by some spirit for which neither the patient nor the therapist have a way of identifying or treating.

What do you guys think?

Do fronkeys exist?

The fact that asking “Does fronkey exist?” assumes fronkey exists is quite important. It reminds us that fronkey’s existence is intuitive and known by everyone. Fronkey is not hiding, but maybe we are.

If you think the above premise is sound, you have a problem. It implies if we can think something, the object of our thoughts must really exist beyond our thoughts. This is the species of argument some theists make as an apology for their belief in god. They however, argue that god occupies a special category of objects unlike unicorns or fronkeys so that my restatement of the argument above would not apply to Santa Claus but only to god. I think that is a case of special pleading.

An apologist, Andrew Sveda, in his post, thoughts on god’s existence, argues that to ask the question does god exist implies or assumes god exists in three distinct ways. One, that had we evolved by natural selection, we would not have developed truth seeking abilities; we would have no desire for truth and finally because our lives have meaning and purpose.

Since adaptation improves chances of survival- that is the organism that is best adapted (fittest) to its environment survives, and if truth seeking helps with this adaptation, then it will be developed. And while we have this cognitive ability, how many people use theirs? We have people believing asses talked and Jonah ate a fish and it remained alive for three days in his stomach!

He writes To say someone should believe something because it’s true can only hold if man has some objective purpose, which the atheist must deny. Which is quite interesting. Many people believe as true things that are patently false without any help from atheists. And believing something is true has nothing to do with objective purpose whatever that is. 1+1 is 2 whether your life has purpose or not.

I don’t know, but it seems to me some religious apologists don’t take time even to read on what has been written by other apologists and the responses to those arguments.

And finally, it should always be remembered that however great an argument is, it would take a leap of faith to come from argument for something to the something being actual.

I think people got it all wrong

On who needs forgiveness. The Catholic Church require of its faithful regular confession so their sins can be absolved to give them enough room to sin again for the new week or whatever is the frequency of the confession but I think it is the Church that needs absolution and their god- if it cared to exist.

Stories such as Philomena or the Magdalene Laundries are shining examples of what the church did in Ireland. And also why it needs absolution. And why I am with Ivan when in Brothers Karomazov he says he will take his chances this side of the grave.

It’s a disgrace that such things happened & mothers are still trying to find their long lost children without success.

reflections on blogging

Lately I don’t want to brain much so today I will just write on my blogging journey. I have been blogging here since August 2012. I have written on politics, religion, science topics, books i have read, posted videos, songs, photos of the places i have been to and all. And of late, I have made it a point to make sure some of you get tired by just reading about my runs or hikes or rides. Except Brian who rides much more than I do.

In the beginning, god debates used to interest me but not anymore. While I know I haven’t exhausted whatever arguments god botherers have designed to prop their god, I am unlikely to meet a new one that hasn’t been covered already in all the ones I have looked at.

And as I have said elsewhere, I have made friends online. Some have been around this blog from those early days, being critics, supporters and sometimes broadening my perspectives on different topics. Some we have lost. Some have gone to their maker. And some maybe have just disappeared in the thin air.

In the spirit of no braining, I want to repost one of the blogs from 2013. The passage below is from Atheism Explained by D.R. Steele

God cannot be destroyed. He can’t be injured against his will or made to suffer against his will, and he knows this. If this is true, then God can’t be afraid of anything. He has never known fear at first hand, though he may have known fear in his imagination, the way we know fear by watching a horror movie . But if God has never been fearful, then God has never been courageous . The virtue of courage consists in overcoming or disregarding or perhaps suppressing one’s fear or one’s inclination to fear. Bravery, then, is a virtue that God can never achieve .

The same applies to most o f the human virtues. Most virtues, like courage, involve self-control and therefore have no application to God, who experiences not the slightest flicker of appetites or impulses which might cause him to deviate from doing whatever he infallibly decides is best. God cannot be tempted, so he earns no points for resisting temptation. Nothing, to God, is an effort, so he can never become lazy or irresolute, and deserves no praise for being steadfast!
If God is all powerful and almighty, then God has never faced any onerous tasks, has never shouldered any burdens, has never had to give up one thing in order to get another ( except where the alternatives are logically incompatible ) , has never felt involuntary pain or even a twinge of discomfort or anxiety, has never had to make a difficult decision, has never solved an intellectual puzzle ( since he knows all the answers in advance ) . God has no curiosity, since he knows everything instantly, without making an effort to find out.

God has never had to work hard at anything, has never been surprised or disappointed. God has never had to make a choice, since that would presuppose at least a moment where he had not made up his mind. God can never be careful or considerate. God can never pay particular attention. God has never experienced, at first hand, the joy of understanding an elegant theorem or experiencing a great work of art. He has heard it all before.
Creation of anything by humans, for example creation of a song or a book, has its joys and its sorrows . But for God, the Creator of the universe, there could be no joy, or sorrow, or sense of accomplishment. He created the universe just by willing it and before he willed it, he knew how it was going to turn out. Aside from that, joy and sorrow are characteristics of evolved conscious beings with bodies, forever enmeshed in the struggle to survive and reproduce.
Such emotional flurries could have no place in the life of. an eternal, indestructible Supreme Being. Theists say that God is wholly good. This implies that he has never known at first hand malice, lust, greed, or envy. Furthermore, God, defined as God who is wholly good, is held to be necessary. If it’s necessary that God is wholly good, then God could never go even slightly bad, he could never start toying with a bit of shadiness here and there . So God can’t do anything even slightly evil . No credit is due to God for being good; he can’t help
himself.

Only a very few theists are prepared to say that God could choose to do evil, and it’s easy to see why. If God is free to do something evil, then he might, at any moment, do just that. Being all-good would then be revealed as not necessarily true of God : it must have been a mistake all along to think of it as necessarily true & a practical matter we could no longer depend on God to be good. How could we ever know that God had turned bad? What evidence might we find to give us an indication of any such turn of events? It does seem to be essential to the God concept that God is impotent to commit evil. Even mild naughtiness must be beyond his powers. We begin to wonder whether this entity can really be a person .

Have a good week everyone.