Losing His Religion

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9 Responses

  1. morsec0de says:

    ” We do not reject accounts written today about the Woodstock music festival, just because it is forty years later.”

    We would if the accounts detailed (for example) human beings with the ability to fly and perform magic.

    “But if you pushed things hard enough, Darwinism and atheism have the same problems.”

    Sorry, but untrue.

    Atheism isn’t a ‘thing’. Atheism is the rejection of theist claims. That’s it.

    If by ‘darwinism’ you mean ‘the theory of evolution through natural selection’, then you’re completely wrong.

  2. Stephen Bedard says:

    If enough people witnessed miracles, we would have to at least investigate. The original point is that 40-70 years by itself does not take away from historical value.

    Actually, atheism is a thing now. It is not simply a lack of belief. It has evolved into its own system with its own philosophy and morality and has even become evangelistic. It is now a belief system and not just a non-belief system.

  3. morsec0de says:

    “If enough people witnessed miracles, we would have to at least investigate.”

    Certainly. But as we have no witnesses when dealing with such old documents, that doesn’t really apply.

    “The original point is that 40-70 years by itself does not take away from historical value.”

    It depends on what the historical claim is.

    For example, the existence and actions of Gaius Julius Caesar can be backed up by the historical evidence. The claim that he was the descendant of the goddess Venus, however, is not.

    “It has evolved into its own system with its own philosophy and morality and has even become evangelistic.”

    I’m sorry, but you’re wrong.

    Atheism is a part of many worldviews and systems and philosophies. But atheism, by itself, is not any of those things.

    For example, I’m a secular humanism. Secular humanism includes atheism, but it isn’t atheism, if you take my meaning.

  4. Stephen Bedard says:

    My point is that it is not the age of the document that determines the value. You would reject the Gospels even if they were written during the life of Jesus and we still had the originals.

    Of course there are different forms of atheism, just as there are different forms of Christianity. Atheism is not just about unbelief. The reason atheists spent thousands of dollars on their bus campaign is not that they wanted to tick of theists but because they thought they had a better alternative for people.

  5. morsec0de says:

    “My point is that it is not the age of the document that determines the value.”

    Not quite. It is not the age of the document that solely determines the value.

    If we had originals written during the time of Jesus, then that would certainly be better evidence than you have. Evidence that something remarkable happened, certainly, to convince those people.

    “Of course there are different forms of atheism, just as there are different forms of Christianity.”

    You’re not comparing two similar things.

    You need to compare atheism and theism. There aren’t ‘different forms’ of theism…there are different belief systems that include theism, one of which is your particular brand of Christianity.

    “Atheism is not just about unbelief.”

    Yes, it is. I don’t know where you’re getting your information from.

    “The reason atheists”

    Atheists did not do this. A group of people who happen to have atheism as one of their attributes did this.

    Are you really not seeing the difference, or are you being stubborn?

  6. Shamelessly Atheist says:

    If enough people witnessed miracles, we would have to at least investigate. The original point is that 40-70 years by itself does not take away from historical value.

    We’re not exactly talking about a period where things were recorded accurately. There were no newspapers, no film, nothing but oral tradition prior to the gospels. This is not evidence we would admit into any legal proceeding, and my idea of extraordinary evidence (which this claim requires) goes far beyond a level of quality that would pass a mere legal test. So, 40-70 years after the fact given to us several levels (NOT just individuals) removed from anyone who might have been eyewitnesses does indeed greatly diminish its value to essentially nil.

    Actually, atheism is a thing now. It is not simply a lack of belief. It has evolved into its own system with its own philosophy and morality and has even become evangelistic. It is now a belief system and not just a non-belief system.

    No, secular humanism is a philosophy which is compatible with atheism (which most definitely is not a philosophy). There are other philosophies which are also compatible with atheism.

    The reason atheists spent thousands of dollars on their bus campaign is not that they wanted to tick of theists but because they thought they had a better alternative for people.

    As an individual who was involved in a bus ad campaign I can tell you that aside from the truth being better than living a lie, this is wrong. What we were about is to get people to rethink their position and to let people know that we atheists exist and those that wish we wouldn’t had better get used to the idea. It is a statement of empowerment, of telling society that we are a force to be reckoned with and that religion is no longer going to be given the immunity from criticism that it so richly did not deserve.

    THAT’S what it was about. If it ticked a few Christians off with such mild messages it was no sweat off my back. How strong can the faith of such people be if something so innocuous gets a bee in their bonnet? That’s a sign of insecurity of belief, not an affirmation of it. We atheists have had religion shoved in our faces and interfering in our lives and we’re sick of it.

  7. Stephen Bedard says:

    To MorseCode: “Not atheists but people who have atheism as one of their attributes.”

    You would never let Christians get away with this. Imagine if I responded to the corruption of televangelists by saying they were not Christians, they were just people that had Christianity as one of their attributes.

    To Shamelessly Atheist:

    Oral testimony is not legal evidence? What country do you live in? Of course there was no film or TV, but we do not deny all events that took place before the invention of these events. Studies in oral tradition have revealed how accurate these things can be.

    I am willing to admit that secular humanism is the proper term but atheism is the umbrella term that is presented to the public. Perhaps it has a better ring to it or is more understandable. As for the bus campaigns, it did not tick off this Christian. I welcome the opportunity for more communication on these issues.

  8. morsec0de says:

    “You would never let Christians get away with this.”

    For the simple reason that atheism is ONE THING and Christianity is MANY THINGS.

    Try and wrap your head around it. Atheism: the lack of belief in a god. Theism: the belief in a god.

    Both of those are only ONE THING.

    Christianity: a set of beliefs and principles. Secular Humanism: a set of beliefs and principles.

    Both of those are MANY THINGS.

    Get it?

  9. Stephen Bedard says:

    I agree with your statement about Christianity and secular humanism but not about theism and atheism. Theism is many things. It includes monotheism, deism, polytheism, panentheism and pantheism. To a lesser degree, atheism also has variety. For example, the early Christians were called atheists by the Romans because they did not believe in the Greco-Roman pantheon even though they did believe in the Judeo-Christian God.

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