There is no God. There is no reason to believ ethat there is. Religions is a total waste of time and we should concentrage on being better people while were allive than kiossing some imaginary friends arse forever.
I don’t want to be “that guy,” but the spelling made it tricky to tell just what it was you’re trying to say.
There’s no reason religion should interfere with being a better person, in my opinion. A more wise person, maybe, but I don’t think that’s what you meant.
gonzomax, is it you?
Hm. So it isn’t.
Anyways, I don’t think that god exists, but that doesn’t mean that some people haven’t found some kind of balance between believing in a deity and being a good person.
Sure there is. At their core, evil and faith both involve rejections of rational thinking. They are mutually reinforcing behaviors.
Sir Oinksalot, is your purpose here to expose people to a viewpoint they may have never seen before? Because I don’t think your viewpoint is as underexposed as you may think. Is your purpose to convince people of the truth of your viewpoint? Then I suggest you re-organize your OP, and make a more forceful argument than mere declaration. As it stands, your post will not make any difference to anyone’s beliefs. Or is your purpose merely to proclaim your beliefs from the mountaintops, perfectly content to be largely ignored or dismissed if that’s what it comes to? Because that’s what you’re on the track for right now.
Wow! This cogent and insightful essay has completely revolutionized my thinking. I am going to change my entire life now.
Gee, if I weren’t already an atheist, I would certainly become one now!
As Dan Dennett says, there’s nothing I hate more than a bad argument for a position I like.
When come back, bring argument (if have argument). Preferably one that hasn’t been done to death in GD.
I thought it was pretty clear, but somewhat painful. Perhaps the OP’s free nonreligious time could be used to improve that?
Anyway, I think the word the OP’s looking for is actually “god”, and probably “gods” too, since they seem to be denying the existence of gods in general rather than just the Christian God. I suppose my biggest complaint would be that he’s actually denying that existence; i’d say that there are no reasons to deny the existence of any gods entirely (or at least no good ones).
There are a lot of things in life that involve abandoning rational thinking. Many people out there who hold to “good” ideals–universal suffrage, for instance–do so because they’ve been raised that way, not because they’ve thought about it and rationally decided that everyone deserves a vote.
On the other hand, there are a lot of things that are both rational and “evil.” The twentieth century’s campaigns of ethnic cleansing are so horrible in part because they were so methodical. Reason, devoid of emotion and sympathy (which, I argue, are essentially “unreasonable”), does not always lead towards somebody’s idea of “good.”
I realise this is a hijack, but I’ve reasoned it out and decided that the OP isn’t going to spark much of a deep debate.
Well, to be cliche, I might raise the specter of the Invisible Pink Unicorn or the Flying Spaghetti Monster or the teapot in orbit around Saturn or Bigfoot, and ask if we have good reasons to deny their existence entirely, and, if so, what makes God different?
Though it does look as though you are willing to swallow the claim “Yes, Zeus is possibly existent; I cannot deny it entirely.” Which would merely demonstrate, I think, that you are using denial in entirety as indicating a standard of evidence beyond that which one such as the OP would be using it to indicate (or, indeed, most people, in most contexts). I deny Zeus’s existence in entirety, even while accepting that his existence is logically possible, for I do not consider denial of X to be as strong a claim as that X is logically impossible.
Then I think the only difference is what we mean by “denial”. If I understand your view correctly, you would consider “denial of Zeus” to be equivalent to “total disbelief in Zeus”; whereas I would consider it to be equivalent to “the existence of Zeus is logically impossible”. I think it’s just that semantic difference in how we define the word, in that we’re both coming from the same point; we accept that Zeus’ existence is a possibility, but we don’t believe.
Well, I’m glad we got that settled.
Yeah, I guess we agree. That’s what I was saying at the end, the only difference is how we’re using the word “denial”. But I think my use of the word is more in line with how it is ordinarily employed, and, were the OP to say “I deny God’s existence”, there would be no need to chastise him for using the word in this way. He’s given no indications that he finds God’s existence logically impossible (though he may always go over the edge and say so); what he has indicated is simply total belief in God’s nonexistence, in the same manner as you would apparently accept.
I guess it’s again just a matter of reading different things into it. I think that by saying “God doesnt exist” he is in fact saying that God’s existence is logically impossible. I don’t believe in God, and I’m pretty certain (well, as certain as you can be), but I would never say God doesn’t exist outright. Again I think it’s just a matter of having different definitions, this time of a phrase rather than just a word. But if the OP does follow your understanding and not mine then you’re right, of course.
Why not? I mean, plenty of the things I say out loud, I say them because I’m certain of them, but all the same I lack logical proof for them. Things like “I was not adopted” and “China is to the east of India” and “Man has landed on the moon” and “Unicorns do not exist”. When I say such things, I don’t go to extra pains to qualify them, and make the situation clear: “Oh, well, I believe these things, but I don’t have logical proof for them, and, indeed, there isn’t any logical proof for them.” If I were to stick to only saying things out loud which were logically provable, I’d hardly say anything at all (at least, on a fairly conventional understanding of what logical provability is). So why should a statement like “God doesn’t exist” be interpreted disanalogously, as actually making the claim “God’s nonexistence is logically provable”?
Because saying “I believe I was adopted”, “I believe China is to the East of India” and so on make you look like you either have a story to tell or you’re a conspiracy theorist. When it comes to things that are pretty much certain saying only that you believe them to be true would make you seem as if you’re questioning their existence, when in fact i’m probably just as certain as you are; technically I am more likely to be correct that way. So it would be ok to use statements like that just to get the basic gist of what you mean across.
When it comes to debates, OTOH, clarity and accuracy are paramount. The statement “God doesn’t exist” doesn’t say “I do not believe God exists”; it says he does not exist. If we say “God’s existence” is p, it’s not saying “I don’t believe p” it’s saying “not p”. If what we want to get across is that we don’t believe in God’s existence, why go with the more unclear statement “God doesn’t exist” when we have “I don’t believe God exists”? To me, they express two quite different concepts, and so I would personally choose the more accurate one to describe what i’m trying to get across when debating.
Yes, because that’s what it is intended to say. It says God doesn’t exist; it does not say God’s nonexistence is logically provable, it just says that, all the same, God doesn’t exist.
Well, it seems to me that saying X is always the same as saying “I believe X”. There’s never going to be a situation where I I mean, I can’t distinguish between things which are true and things which I only believe to be true. I’ll never say “It’s raining, but I don’t believe it is”, or such things. Why should I explicitly toss “I (really, strongly, completely) believe” in front of every assertion I make? Is it not implicit in conversational protocol that the things I announce are the things I believe? Especially in the context of a debate, is it not clear that the statements I make are my beliefs, or should I qualify out loud every statement of mine which falls short of logical provability?
If we were arguing over, I don’t know, the quantity of tea of China, and I happened, somewhere along the line, to mention as a supporting assertion “Unicorns do not exist”, would I somehow be disqualified for not phrasing this in the form of a belief? Have I overstepped my bounds by being so bold as to make a naked statement? That just doesn’t seem in line with how ordinary language works.
I fucked up the beginning of the second paragraph above, and missed the edit window, so here’s a fixed version of the second paragraph:
Well, it seems to me that saying X is always the same as saying “I believe X”. I mean, I can’t distinguish between things which are true and things which I only believe to be true. I’ll never say “It’s raining, but I don’t believe it is”, or such things. Why should I explicitly toss “I (really, strongly, completely) believe” in front of every assertion I make? Is it not implicit in conversational protocol that the things I announce are the things I believe? Especially in the context of a debate, is it not clear that the statements I make are my beliefs, or should I qualify out loud every statement of mine which falls short of logical provability?
How much you wanna bet that Sir Oinksalot has left the building?
Right after his one and only post.
It suggests to me a different approach to the subject. Clearly whether a person says “God exists” or “I believe God exists”, we know that they believe God exists. The difference is that pointing out that it is a belief acknowledges that you could be wrong. Saying “God exists”, especially with certain context, suggests to me that the person is saying “God exists; it isn’t a matter of opinion, it’s not a guess, it is fact”. A person who uses believe, conversely, would be clearly stating that they accept their view is an opinion. Both are opinions, certainly, but the terms in which they’re used show the opinion of that person on their opinion (if that makes sense).
That’s the sense I got from the OP; not that they were setting forth what they saw as a particular belief, but that they were setting forth what they saw as fact. Opinion either way, but my understanding was that the OP saw their opinion as indisputable fact.