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#12482 - 11/16/05 09:13 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Philege Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 184
Loc: United Kingdom
Oh, so you are an atheist! Well you are the biggest FOOL in this forum because even an idiot like me knows that God exists! Shame for you.

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#12483 - 11/16/05 10:26 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Rob,

Christ tells me to consider other?s needs before my own ? if everyone did this, the world would be a very different place. He tells me to turn the other cheek and to make no enemies but to treat those who call me an enemy with love and respect. I am commanded to forgive others endlessly and to give (freely and with no thought of reward) to those who are in need. I am told to treat material goods as of fleeting and little value.

In effect, the message is to value others. Any Christian who does not do this to all others is gravely mistaken.

This message is in stark contrast to the message of contemporary Western culture where I am urged to put myself before others.

Television is the greatest teacher of ideas and attitudes ? billions of pounds spent on advertising attest to this.

Televisions message through advertising (and therefore a picture of what humanity values and is telling itself) is as follows:

I don?t drive the right car,
Or have a big enough house - with enough appliances.
My clothes aren?t new enough or stylish enough,
My hair isn?t the right colour or shiny enough or even strong enough ? split ends are a disgrace, as is dandruff.
My white?s aren?t white enough.
My skin is too wrinkled and not tanned enough.
I don?t holiday in the right places or eat at good enough restaurants.
I am too fat or just the wrong shape.
I don?t eat enough fast food.
I don?t have enough debt.
My breasts aren?t big enough.
My teeth aren?t white enough or are too crooked.
My lipo hasn?t been sucked enough.
I am not famous enough.
And on?
And on?

This is what we think is important today.

I believe that when we bury our spiritual nature we create a vacuum that has to be filled with something (see above).

In my opinion this world will not be a better one if it is entirely atheist.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#12484 - 11/17/05 09:46 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Philege Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 184
Loc: United Kingdom
Philege have all the answers.....will have eternal life and never grow old..never have teeth fall out and always be happy....just wait and see.

When did I say that ..will have eternal life and never grow old..etc.

When one looks at this world, does one not see how the trees produce oxygen for us and we produce carbon dioxide for them, such an organised and arranged order. (An accident, com'on!?)The formation of clouds, which weigh thousands of pounds and still float, see how they form billowing bodies that flow with the air current, lightning and thunder, rain how it forms in due season in organised and arranged patterns that we still don't understand today (Oh we think we do! Hey Rob)Funny how fossilised oil was made just in time for us to use it for fuel etc., the development of the earth, mankind and the animal kingdom. If all this cannot convince you then I certainly do not have the answers, anyway, please remember to scrounge me for a drop of water when you and Rob are scorching in hell. I will be looking out for you if I make it. By the way you are lucky because Jesus said 'Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of God' So because you and Rob are 'Poor in spirit' being obvious atheists then the Kingdom of Heaven will certainly be yours.

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#12485 - 11/17/05 10:40 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
'If all this cannot convince you then I certainly do not have the answers, anyway, please remember to scrounge me for a drop of water when you and Rob are scorching in hell.'

- Philege, elsewhere Rob has said that us believers make him sick. I am sad to say that I can see why.

Blacknad.

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#12486 - 11/18/05 04:26 AM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Anonymous
Unregistered


How pale is the mirror when we see ourselves reflected in it. How strange the image to our eyes where once we thought ourselves so wise. Let peace be your guide and all your actions will be righteous. Be thou self-righteous, and all the reflection cannot erase a single drop of it.

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#12487 - 11/18/05 08:38 AM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Amaranth,

I am not sure whether you are telling me off for being self-righteous (and doing it in some style too).

If so, I have simply written what Jesus asks of me and have not commented upon my ability to uphold such - which is mostly woefully inadequate.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#12488 - 11/18/05 04:38 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Anonymous
Unregistered


Blacknad,
I have no problem with what you have written. It pains me to see others acting as if they are above reproach. But who has ears to hear, they will hear, and those who have eyes to see, will see. All we see is in some way a reflection of ourselves, and we ought to look at ourselves critically once in a while. Who was it said to cast out the beam in thine own eyes before complaining of the mote in thy neighbors? wink

"Amaranth"

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#12489 - 11/21/05 08:50 AM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
RM Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/07/05
Posts: 560
Loc: London
"The formation of clouds, which weigh thousands of pounds and still float."

Philege the foolish,
Now I see what your problem is; you're uneducated. Therefore, I forgive you for believing in God and all that riff - raff. Tell you what, read some books on; physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics, then if you still believe in God- we are mortal enemies. If not, we are friends.

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#12490 - 11/21/05 08:52 AM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
RM Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/07/05
Posts: 560
Loc: London
Blacknad,
so this is where you've been.

"- Philege, elsewhere Rob has said that us believers make him sick."

US believers, I thought you said you were an atheist.

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#12491 - 11/21/05 02:51 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
soilguy Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
Quote:
Originally posted by Blacknad:
Christ tells me to consider other?s needs before my own ? if everyone did this, the world would be a very different place. He tells me to turn the other cheek and to make no enemies but to treat those who call me an enemy with love and respect. I am commanded to forgive others endlessly and to give (freely and with no thought of reward) to those who are in need. I am told to treat material goods as of fleeting and little value.

In effect, the message is to value others. Any Christian who does not do this to all others is gravely mistaken.

This message is in stark contrast to the message of contemporary Western culture where I am urged to put myself before others.
That's all fine and good. Religions usually offer a good way for people to get along with each other. Do people also have to believe in magic though? That is where relgions get society in trouble.
_________________________
When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
--S. Lewis

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#12492 - 11/21/05 03:01 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
soilguy Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
Quote:
Originally posted by Philege:
When one looks at this world, does one not see how the trees produce oxygen for us and we produce carbon dioxide for them, such an organised and arranged order. (An accident, com'on!?)The formation of clouds, which weigh thousands of pounds and still float, see how they form billowing bodies that flow with the air current, lightning and thunder, rain how it forms in due season in organised and arranged patterns that we still don't understand today (Oh we think we do! Hey Rob)Funny how fossilised oil was made just in time for us to use it for fuel etc., the development of the earth, mankind and the animal kingdom.
As I've said in the past, you insist on approaching the world from a point of complexity, and claim it is too complicated to understand in any way, unless magic was involved.

You don't have to abandon your religion in order to learn about the sciences. For a person with strong spiritual beliefs, learning about the scientific explanation for the things you mention above would only strengthen your wonder at it all.

Quote:
If all this cannot convince you then I certainly do not have the answers, anyway, please remember to scrounge me for a drop of water when you and Rob are scorching in hell.
If the carrot doesn't work, beat him with the fear stick!
_________________________
When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
--S. Lewis

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#12493 - 11/21/05 03:12 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
RM Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/07/05
Posts: 560
Loc: London
Stop promoting religion; it makes people 1. Undervalue them selves because they believe they are inferior to some ?supreme being? 2. Undervalue their lives because they believe that when they die the will continue to live in ?another dimension.?

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#12494 - 11/21/05 09:27 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Rob,

I have not stated anywhere in this forum that I am an atheist.

As for promoting religion - I spend most time on this site reading the science threads - I find them fascinating and I am learning much as a result. But I respond to posts when they knock belief - and do so in a public forum, as I have the right to - just as you have the right to knock my beliefs.


Rob - "Stop promoting religion; it makes people 1. Undervalue them selves because they believe they are inferior to some ?supreme being?."

REP: I value myself, as I value other individuals. The fact that I was created for a purpose gives me a very high inherent value.

In fact, if I were to believe that we are mere products of chance then I am rightly justified in believing that we are utterly without value. The universe knows not or cares not that we are here - and will know not or care not when we are gone. Nothing will regret our passing, we will not be missed, and none of our achievements will remain.

I do not 'believe' so that I can place value upon myself, but value of oneself is a by-product of belief.


Rob - "2. Undervalue their lives because they believe that when they die the will continue to live in ?another dimension.?"

REP: I value my life in the present as do many other believers. I am asked to be a good steward of this planet and to care for others around me. In no place does the Bible give believers the right to vacate their responsibilities to this present life.

Those believers who undervalue life are missing the point and are representative of a portion of the general poulation who also do not value their life - who are happy not to learn or explore this existence, but are content to sit in front of TV or whatever else they find pleasantly distracting and add no value to the world community.

You do not have to look solely at believers to find people who undervalue life.

It is a common misconception that religion propagates this kind of inactivity.


Regards,

Blacknad.

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#12495 - 11/21/05 10:06 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Soilguy,

You said - "That's all fine and good. Religions usually offer a good way for people to get along with each other. Do people also have to believe in magic though? That is where relgions get society in trouble."

REP: Religion without God at its centre is useless. Religion without God is just a moral framework and has no more value than any other relative moral framework.

It comes down to authority - the Bible tells me not to lie - I accept its authority.

Soilguy, can you explain to me (obviously without reference to authority), why it is wrong to lie?

In fact, can you explain to me why the Nazi holocaust was wrong?

I believe it was wrong, but for very different reasons to you.

What is to stop me from replying to everything you say about why it was wrong with the statement, "Ah, but that's what you say."?

If there is no magic in religion, ie. 'no God or supernatural', then there is no authority, and therefore no morality.

Once again, I do not believe so that I can have morality - but it is a by-product of belief.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#12496 - 11/21/05 10:42 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Philege Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/30/04
Posts: 184
Loc: United Kingdom
"The formation of clouds, which weigh thousands of pounds and still float."

Philege the foolish,
Now I see what your problem is; you're uneducated. Therefore, I forgive you for believing in God and all that riff - raff. Tell you what, read some books on; physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics, then if you still believe in God- we are mortal enemies. If not, we are friends.

I beg your pardon Rob, what if I told you that I have a Bachelor of Science (Double Hons)degree in Botany, Zoology as well as being a qualified Chartered Accountant. Very uneducated indeed. I have read books on Physics;Chemistry and especially Biology and these have served to reinforce my belief in God, our little knowledge is nothing compared to the knowledge God has. Because everything in this world consists of those very subjects you mention. I wrote in a previous posting some of the reasons why I firmly believe in God. Read about my son and my late brother. Those experiences are 100% true and not fabricated. By the way I also rely on my faith to believe in God. I accept him maybe thats why I can speak to him sometimes. You do not know a millimetre of the truth yet. I can only pray for you that one day you will find God, or more correctly He will find you. I thank you for considering me foolish, but I am feeling wise because I believe in the One True Everlasting GOD! I challenge you also to read the scriptures with a prayer to God for understanding, you may be splendidly surprised.

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#12497 - 11/22/05 10:59 AM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
RM Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/07/05
Posts: 560
Loc: London
sigh

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#12498 - 11/22/05 03:08 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
soilguy Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Blacknad:
Soilguy,

You said - "That's all fine and good. Religions usually offer a good way for people to get along with each other. Do people also have to believe in magic though? That is where relgions get society in trouble."

REP: Religion without God at its centre is useless. Religion without God is just a moral framework and has no more value than any other relative moral framework.

It comes down to authority - the Bible tells me not to lie - I accept its authority.

Soilguy, can you explain to me (obviously without reference to authority), why it is wrong to lie?


It is wrong to lie because the people around you learn that you are not trustworthy, and your word is devalued (rightfully) in comparison to that of others.

In fact, can you explain to me why the Nazi holocaust was wrong?

If we treat others with disrespect, and murder is the ultimate disrespect, we can expect to be treated no better. Humanity thrives on cooperation, and suffers otherwise. It's our nature.

I believe it was wrong, but for very different reasons to you.

Are you saying you think it would be OK, if it were not for the threat of Eternal Punishment?

What is to stop me from replying to everything you say about why it was wrong with the statement, "Ah, but that's what you say."?

Nothing. After all, it IS what I say, and nothing more. You are getting the point of view of someone who behaves morally, yet doesn't believe in a father-type God, and expects no afterlife. All I'm saying is that religion isn't required in order for a person to behave in a decent manner.

If there is no magic in religion, ie. 'no God or supernatural', then there is no authority, and therefore no morality.

I will agree that there are some people who would do whatever they think they could get away with if they did not fear punishment in an afterlife. Plausible benefits for believing in the supernatural do not constitute, for me, a reason to believe in the supernatural.

Once again, I do not believe so that I can have morality - but it is a by-product of belief.

OK. I can agree that there is more than one pathway to moral behavior.
_________________________
When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
--S. Lewis

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#12499 - 11/22/05 11:19 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Soilguy - thanks for taking the time to respond,

I like the bold - I think I'm going to nick it smile

Anyway I only answered the question 'why can't you have it without the magic?'- I was not for one moment trying to suggest that any of this was a reason to believe.

You said - It is wrong to lie because the people around you learn that you are not trustworthy, and your word is devalued (rightfully) in comparison to that of others.

REP: You have given a reason why lying can have its downside - this is not a reason why it is wrong. In fact if you can lie and get away with it, there can be many advantages to lying.

The argument you are giving is a utilitarian one and unfortunately, without something or someone in authority, this is how all morality must be framed.

If we treat others with disrespect, and murder is the ultimate disrespect, we can expect to be treated no better. Humanity thrives on cooperation, and suffers otherwise. It's our nature.

REP: Again, this is a utilitarian argument. Accordingly, if I don't care how others will treat me if I murder, why then should I not murder. In fact if I am a dictator, and want to murder, what have I got to fear - my people probably already have no respect for me - but they fear me, which is good enough. Strength wins.

It may be true that humanity thrives on cooperation - but also many individuals throughout history have thrived by killing their competition. Why should they buy into your cooperation? And who gave you the right to force then to?

It's our nature.

REP: Countless murders would seem to say not. Even according to evolution, it is not within our nature to cooperate corporately, but only within our sub-group.

Are you saying you think it would be OK, if it were not for the threat of Eternal Punishment?

REP: Eternal punishment has nothing to do with it. I believe it is wrong because we are made in the creator's image and He has accorded value to us and told us what is in our best interests.

As I have stated elsewhere:

"In fact, if I were to believe that we are mere products of chance then I am rightly justified in believing that we are utterly without value. The universe knows not or cares not that we are here - and will know not or care not when we are gone. Nothing will regret humanity's passing, we will not be missed, and none of our achievements will remain."


Nothing. After all, it IS what I say, and nothing more. You are getting the point of view of someone who behaves morally, yet doesn't believe in a father-type God, and expects no afterlife. All I'm saying is that religion isn't required in order for a person to behave in a decent manner.

REP: I agree with you completely, although much of what we perceive as right or wrong has come out of a Judeo-Christian tradition. But I would add that authority IS required for you to be able to state that someone else's actions are wrong.

Plausible benefits for believing in the supernatural do not constitute, for me, a reason to believe in the supernatural.

REP: No, for me neither.

OK. I can agree that there is more than one pathway to moral behaviour.

REP: Once again I agree. But I do not think there is more than one pathway to define moral behaviour.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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#12500 - 11/23/05 05:46 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
soilguy Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
So even if the authority is imaginary, it is required?
_________________________
When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
--S. Lewis

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#12501 - 11/23/05 11:51 PM Re: would an atheist world be a better one?
Blacknad Offline
Superstar

Registered: 10/05/05
Posts: 901
Loc: Coventry, England
Soilguy,

All I am saying is that an objective moral framework is not possible without an authority or a referent.

We can frame morality in different ways, for example, as the consequentialists might, but it is all relative and open to debate.

But then having said that, even if we accept a Christian moral framework morality is left open to subjective interpretation - just a bit less so.

And no, I would not want to have an imaginary authority, even if it did confer some benefits. I am more interested in the truth, warts 'n all. I just happen to believe there is an authority, for other reasons.

Regards,

Blacknad.

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