Jesterballz thread – point by point rebuttals and partial methodology for determining Truth

Jesterballz, I’ve migrated the thread to my site for readability/loading time.
Taken from this post for readability.

I honestly can’t see how you can seriously say “I welcome civilised argument in the comments” when your name is “jesterballz”.

In any case, we can do this the easy way (testing for coherency, universality, and uniqueness of claim to truth) or the polemic way (point by point rebuttal/back and forth until no conclusion is reached). Up to you.

You said:
There are a whole lot of people out there who believe in “God”. Billions of people are Christian, Muslim or Jewish, and are following their religion (most often blindly). But I strongly refute the claim that this particular “God” exists, and I have pretty good reason, too. So all those curious people out there, please read this and maybe you will realise your mistake. That said, I am not accusing anyone who believes in God of being stupid. Please make comments to explain your reasoning if you disagree with my theory.

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Shadow thread 2 – addressing general criticisms

Hey again, Shadow

Not meaning to be vindictive here – just critical, in the “Simon Cowell” sense. If you’re in any way offended, I’m sorry in advance (it’s just that there are a LOT of holes). Also, if you want an explanation of each point, I’ll be happy to give them to you:

From Comment #1:

The concept of a God or god-form is not necessarily an absolute, but a conjuration.

You’re already starting off on the wrong foot: God is the embodiment of the absolute.

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A Defense of Absolute Truth

4/30/2013 note: If you are coming here from Google, here is the update to this post. I tried to make use of some editing skills to make it more readable.

Reposted from what seems like a now-defunct Garage Scholars blog (argh!). A very good recap of a Ravi Zacharias message, “A Defense of Absolute Truth”, which details why secularism fails to provide a coherent set of answers to the problems of the world (part 1 | part 2).

An interesting anecdotal defense of this point is in the second result of this Google search.

Here’s a gem: Secularization = no shame. Relativism = no reason. Privatization = no meaning. [All three have occurred to varying degrees in Westernized civilizations.]

Original post has been reposted below.

[note: in case you missed it, this is a recap which has taken on a kind of bullet-point form. I’ve reformatted parts of it for readability. If you don’t get parts of it, feel free to comment.

note #2: thread available at Newsvine. I’m thinking about manually importing it.]

On Saturday, March 12, the Garage Scholars, named that day by Robert Grange, held their second meeting and listened to a talk by Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias. This talk was given the day before Ravi’s talk at the Mormon Tabernacle.

Ravi Zacharias
A Defense of Absolute Truth
11/13/05
The University of Utah

Sexuality, marriage, stem-cell research, genetics—“these things are getting very, very complex.” It’s hard to know “how to address this tangled subject with meaning and coherence.”

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Junaman thread – Empiricism vs. Rationalism – Pt 5

The formatting always gets lost in translation… even with html. Bleh.

The tags are a good indicator of what this thread’s about (maybe will work on a summary later).

A: It’s fine, I suppose. But the longer it takes, the more disingenuous your pursuit of “exposing incompetence”, as it were, will look (recent post(s) nonwithstanding).

J: You put a bit much weight on a tagline…

That’s not just a tagline… it’s also the title of your blog.

…How is this conversation exposing incompetence.

Well, that one should be obvious. The incompetence comes in the form of dogmaticism regarding the “ultimate truth” of science, which is implied from your For Christians page.

The real incompetence is not whether you believe in a god [or not], but what you use that belief for, what objective you try to achieve with that belief.

I can agree if you’re referring to “amoralism”, e.g. in the case of Hitler and Bush. I don’t think proselytising necessarily bring you to the same conclusion.

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Junaman thread – Empiricism vs. Rationalism – Pt 4

A continuation of part 3 (reposted for readability, loading time, and the fact I knew it would be intially filtered by akismet). Topics include the probability of mass hallucination (ref: 1st century Christianity | apologetics), Junaman’ s atheistic generalization of rationalism, the scientific method, the fallacy of “rational knowledge”, and reasons why “objectivism” is a fallacy (with brief mention of why the Nobel Prize exists).

Sorry for taking so long to reply…

It’s fine, I suppose. But the longer it takes, the more disingenuous your pursuit of “exposing incompetence”, as it were, will look (recent post(s) nonwithstanding).

First of all, not all religious people claim they have “seen” or “experienced” god,

This is true, but…

secondly the ones who have can all claim they saw different things,

…this is a generalization, which leads you to inaccurately conclude…

no one’s belief is truly identical to another’s, hence is it really a “mass hallucination”, or just different people hallucinating different things.

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Cy thread – on dogmaticism, religious indoctrination, and politicized religion

Had a good feeling it would’ve been caught by akismet (whoops, I’ve been calling it azkimet) and, most likely, not undeleted by Vance. Thread has been continued here.

It is not needful for me to defend my unbelief in a deity. It is up to the theists to defend their belief in a deity. They do this to their own satisfaction but not to mine.

This is dogmaticism at its finest. I hope you recognize that, and are secretly joking.

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The God Delusion (criticism of atheist Dawkins) [VIDEO]

Update [3/1/07]: also check out UK apologist and Oxford Professor Alister McGrath’s book The Dawkins Delusion for a scientifically-inclined rebuttal to Dawkin’s arguments negating God.

—————

Excellent post from Alternet‘s Evan Derkacz discussing the merit (and lack thereof) of Dawkins. Of course, it probably just wouldn’t be right not to link it to my atheistic humanist acquaintance Brett Keller’s blog, where he undoubtedly supports some of his main points of contention.

I’d respond to Dawkins’ assertions myself if I had more time. In all likelihood, though, I probably already have, albeit indirectly.

Sorry, haven’t had much time to post due to increasingly busy schedule. Of course, there have been plenty of blogworthy world events (will do a quick post maybe later).

Oh, and note that I tagged “the Antichrist” not necessarily because I believe Dawkins is the Antichrist… one of them, maybe – but far from “uniting an army” against God as it were. I’d leave it up to the politicians to do that.

via Alternet (video also available at link).
tagline: ‘Darwin’s Rottweiler’ Richard Dawkins disses faith, Bush base

In a BBC interview on Friday, Evolutionary Biologist and sharp religion critic, Richard Dawkins, talks about his new book, The God Delusion (I”m just ecstatic that he referenced the Flying Spaghetti Monster).

He claims to want to speak to the middle ground; to people who haven’t really thought too much about faith and God in order to challenge their belief. An uphill battle, to be sure. He employs all the usual suspects: “people need to believe in fairy tales” “just look at organized religion” but fails to see where every method for assessing reality is hopelessly mired in its own methodology. Or: the scientific method may be positively divine for assessing the physical world, it has built-in limitations w/r/t [FC ed. note: with respect to] the spiritual one.

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Junaman thread – Empiricism vs. Rationalism – Pt 3

Continued from part 2.

J: You haven’t really questioned anything I said, but I’ll reply to some of your post.

You’re right. I haven’t questioned anything you’ve said because you’ve been the one asking the questions which have been the framework for the discussion.

A: Your second sentence is exactly it – the theist argues that he does experience god. That’s why testimony can be such a powerful influence on others.

J: And schizophrenics argue that they experience voices in their heads, or whatever else they may see during hallucinations. Modern science calls that a disease…

… and modern atheists tend to call it the “opiate of the masses”. Key word there is “masses”: have you ever heard of a “mass hallucination”?

This point is especially relevant with the genesis of Christianity in the first century.

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“Wondrous Miracles” Grow Pastor’s Church

This article was posted back on 7/25 on the GFA website, but I was reminded of it when I read the last article they sent me.

And it made me think back to a class the adult group in church was having on euthanasia in bioethics. The “lecturer” proceeded to inform us about the Terri Schiavo case insomething like this:

Life is precious. [Therefore, we should seek to preserve all life.]

Seemed pretty secular to me. Firstly, no one is going to argue that life isn’t precious. Even the Extremist Muslims in the Middle East feel that life is precious. Unfortunately, they just have a different view of what that means for them on earth. To segue, secondly, Jesus’ idea of life was entirely different than the one secular humanism believes in.

Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

Matt 10:39

In any case, because this particular man was a doctor, I’m sure he thought (as I learned, through a heated discussion) that his experience in the field would thereby lend credibility to his case. But here were my questions: what about the will of God and the power of God?

Wouldn’t God have allowed Terri Schiavo to live if he so chose? Wouldn’t prayer and a sincere heart for God have worked a miracle? I doubt he would’ve answered yes.

Moreover, it is indicative of an increasing self-reliance vs. reliance on God.

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.

Matt 7:24-25

Miracles are in no short supply! They just don’t tend to happen where people have little to no faith.

http://www.gfa.org/gfa/latestnewsarticle?wid=DnfnePbS0lVrA3ABz0HrmA

Pastor Darpan’s church is thriving.

“God is using Pastor Darpan vigorously and doing wondrous miracles as he ministers and prays for the sick and needy who approach him,” writes a GFA correspondent.

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Junaman thread – Empiricism vs. Rationalism – Pt 2

A continuation of Part 1. [link: original thread]

A: You could say that creation vs. evolution is something of a throwback to these ideas, where creationism might relate more to empiricism (God exists because of the testimony of others) and evolution might relate more to rationalism (scientific method).

J: But if empiricism is knowledge gained through experience, then how would testimony of others be empirical? We did not experience god, or experience creationism…

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