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Feb 16 2011

In which Mike demonstrates once and for all the proof that God exists

Having some problems with the blog comments on this post and hoping that starting a new one will fix it.

Please direct your attention to the comments section, where MikeAdAstraSmith shall valiantly demonstrate to us poor, benighted sinners that God irrefutably exists.

[Edit: Actually we traced our problem to an overzealous spam filter, which probably thought that some comments looked too much like the work of a certain D**** M****. We're retraining it as fast as we can, but in the meantime, please do enjoy the thread.]

376 comments

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  1. 1
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    i will use the chris langan's Cognitive Theoretic Model of the Universe.ctmu.org, in the first link in the first paragraph on the home page, has a link to an introduction to the paper.

  2. 2
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    without a guiding Entity whose Self-awareness equates to the coherence of self-perceptual spacetime, a self-perceptual universe could not coherently self-configure. Holopantheism is the logical, metatheological umbrella beneath which the great religions of mankind are unknowingly situated.

  3. 3
    MikeAdAstraSmith
  4. 4
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    God is indeed real, for a coherent entity identified with a self-perceptual universe is self-perceptual in nature, and this endows it with various levels of self-awareness and sentience, or constructive, creative intelligence.

  5. 5
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    this is nothing about sin yet, kazim.this is just holopantheism, not xtianity.and your blog is still broken. sigh,…

  6. 6
    Martin

    Not to interrupt, but, without looking at the source you're copy/pasting from, please explain what is meant by describing the universe as "self-perceptual." Are you arguing the universe is itself sentient?

  7. 7
    JT

    Holy crap is that a bunch of gobbligook.I may actually parse this thing from the site and have an ironchariots entry for it.It's going to take a lot to filter out all the rambling, though.

  8. 8
    Kazim

    Wish I could stay for this, but I have to go pick up my son. Martin, keep an eye on the spam filter and make sure it doesn't misbehave again, k? Mike, I look forward to seeing how I have become another notch in your belt when I return this evening, k? ;)

  9. 9
    Martin

    BTW We're paying close attention to ensure nothing of yours gets slotted into the spam folder again.

  10. 10
    Mr. Fine

    And, what evidence do you have that anything you have said is true?

  11. 11
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    we are part of it, and we are sentient.so yes.

  12. 12
    Kazim

    BZZZZZZT! Composition fallacy. Two point penalty.Okay, see you heathens later. ;)

  13. 13
    Martin

    But the fact we are sentient does not demonstrate the universe itself is. A light bulb is part of a house, but a house is not a light bulb.

  14. 14
    JT

    I'm a part of Earth, therefore Earth is also sentient, so therefore Gaia is real.

  15. 15
    Martin

    Gotta run a quick errand too (suppertime!), but don't stop on my account. If anything of Mike's gets shuffled to spam in my absence I will make sure it's properly posted, never fear.

  16. 16
    Mr. Fine

    I have very expensive guitars, 12 of them, some I have had my entire life and one guitar was given to me at birth by my grandfather…therefore obviously I am a great guitarist and entertainer. BzzzzzT Does not work does it!?

  17. 17
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    the universe is not like a house. it is a special case. it is a self-inclusive set.

  18. 18
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    the universe, like the set of all sets, distributively embodies the logical syntax of its own descriptive mathematical language. It is thus not only self-descriptive in nature; where logic denotes the rules of cognition (reasoning, inference), it is self-cognitive as well.

  19. 19
    Martin

    Would you describe the universe as "the set of everything that comprises existence"?

  20. 20
    Dorkman

    the universe is not like a house. it is a special case.Way to explicitly invoke special pleading.

  21. 21
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    it topologically includes itself in the act of descriptively including itself in the act of topologically including itself…, and so on, in the course of which it obviously becomes more than just a set.

  22. 22
    Martin

    Again, how would it be self-cognitive? What do you think, not just the source you're pasting from.

  23. 23
    JT

    the universe, like the set of all sets, distributively embodies the logical syntax of its own descriptive mathematical languageDoes this even mean anything?"Winning" a debate isn't the same thing as winning a Star Trek Technobabble competition.

  24. 24
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    its like mc eschers self-drawing hands. i assume you knwo what i mean

  25. 25
    Martin

    it topologically includes itself in the act of descriptively including itself in the act of topologically including itself…Bud, I think someone's jerking your chain with this stuff. XD

  26. 26
    levitooker

    It sounds like you're trying to make a circular argument but there's too much obfuscation for me to tell what the point of your argument really is.

  27. 27
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    the CTMU shows that reality possesses a complex property akin to self-awareness. That is, just as the mind is real, reality is in some respects like a mind. But when we attempt to answer the obvious question "whose mind?", the answer turns out to be a mathematical and scientific definition of God.

  28. 28
    Dorkman

    Does the CTMU show this, or does the CTMU assert this?

  29. 29
    Mamba24

    So far Mike has demonstrated that he can't prove that either the kalaam cosmological or first cause arguments are valid/plausible. Now he is spitting out nonsensical garbage arguments that have no inherent meaning, and resorts to special pleading and circular arguments….Yeah nothing new here.

  30. 30
    JT

    Okay.1) How exactly is it you think reality has something akin to self awareness?2) How is reality like a mind, and how do you know?3) No, the obvious question is begging the question.4) What is the mathematical/scientific definition of god?

  31. 31
    JT

    Yes, he's using the classic Argument from Gibberish.At the end, when none of us can understand what he's saying, and thus cannot refute it, he'll stroll away, with a smile on his face, confident that he "defeated" yet another group of atheists.

  32. 32
    Jeremiah

    Wow. I can't believe I actually punished my brain by reading the CMTU stuff. Mike, you could have saved us all a lot of time by simply saying that you believe as Sungyak does in that you disagree with materialistic naturalism."without a guiding Entity whose Self-awareness equates to the coherence of self-perceptual spacetime, a self-perceptual universe could not coherently self-configure"This is an assertion. A needlessly obfuscated one at that. You are just asserting that "the universe cannot 'just exist' therefore some intelligence must be involved" except in a gibberishly, desperate to sound deep and meaningful sort of way."That is, just as the mind is real, reality is in some respects like a mind."Being in some respects like a mind does not imply intelligence or consciousness. My computer is "in some respects like a mind" but it has never told me that it loves me. :(

  33. 33
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    in my first post on this thread, i gave you a link to the paper.so it saddens me that i have to spoonfeed you it:In short, the set-theoretic and cosmological embodiments of the self-inclusion paradox are resolved by properly relating the self-inclusive object to the descriptive syntax in terms of which it is necessarily expressed, thus effecting true self-containment: "the universe (set of all sets) is that which topologically contains that which descriptively contains the universe (set of all sets)."

  34. 34
    Mamba24

    Yeah Turns out Mike is just copying and pasting off of Christopher Langan's Wikipedia Bio…The guy is supposed to be extremely smart yet couldn't get through college.

  35. 35
    JT

    Weird. On the outside, blogger says this has 43 posts, and viewing the comments, it says it has 33.

  36. 36
    MJ

    Mike, you're just asserting things as unclear as (it seems to me) humanly possible. assertions are not facts. Or proof. Or evidence. We need those to believe you.

  37. 37
    Rasputin

    What a load of hooey.Stringing together big words in long sentences doesn't make nonsense anything other than nonsensical.If you want us to believe that the universe is self aware then demonstrate it. You won't because you can't because it's utter nonsense.Please, for the love of simple human decency can some theist come up with an argument that gets past step one? Please? Pretty please?

  38. 38
    Isaac

    "The CTMU: A New Kind of Reality Theory was published in the scientific journal, Progress in Complexity, Information and Design."Bwahahah… This journal is an explicitly ID journal, devoted to publishing all the wacky ID stuff that get's rejected from respectable journals.

  39. 39
    MikeAdAstraSmith

  40. 40
    JT

    Mike, you don't get to run away from this point.Exactly how is the universe like a mind, and self aware? What evidence do you have to back up this claim?

  41. 41
    JT

    Alright.. I saw mike post a youtube link, and it went gonners.

  42. 42
    Skeptimus Prime

    Wow, I am speechless"without a guiding Entity whose Self-awareness equates to the coherence of self-perceptual spacetime, a self-perceptual universe could not coherently self-configure"What the hell does this even mean? This is not philosophy, it is a rank attempt to obfuscate.

  43. 43
    MJ

    Saw it too JT, the link is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXksaSewCEs

  44. 44
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    type in chris langan on youtube, and you will get for the first hit a 3-part interview in which he explains his theory.remember, he is probably in terms of raw brainpower the smartest guy on earth. so maybe he sucks at explaining things clearly to normal people, but so do many geniuses.

  45. 45
    JT

    So, now he's engaging in the Argument from Authority?He's smurt.

  46. 46
    JT

    You seem to be intimately familiar with it. Perhaps you can explain. You are, after all, the one we're debating with.

  47. 47
    Isaac

    "remember, he is probably in terms of raw brainpower the smartest guy on earth.so maybe he sucks at explaining things clearly to normal people, but so do many geniuses."That doesn't mean we have to take your or his word for it."[pseudo-intellectual gibberish] therefore god exists, and plus I'm the smartest person ever" does not make for a convincing argument

  48. 48
    MJ

    @MikeRaw brainpower? What does that even mean?I smell an argument from authority. Please tell us what *you* think. I'm not watching some youtube video. Please give us the main points from that video. While you're at it, please respond to any of our questions/remarks.

  49. 49
    Dorkman

    As Mamba24 points out, Mike has been plagiarizing his argument from Christopher Langan's Wikipedia page. I wouldn't expect any clarification — since the obfuscatory language isn't even his, he probably doesn't understand the claims he's making any better than we do. remember, he is probably in terms of raw brainpower the smartest guy on earth.1) Appeal to authority.2) According to the I.Q. metric, which is in itself pseudoscience. so maybe he sucks at explaining things clearly to normal people, but so do many geniuses.No, true geniuses are the ones who can distill their thoughts in such a way that their utility is clear to just about anyone. Someone who can't explain their thoughts coherently could as easily be insane as a genius.

  50. 50
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    What does this say about God? First, if God is real, then God inheres in the comprehensive reality syntax, and this syntax inheres in matter. Ergo, God inheres in matter, and indeed in its spacetime substrate as defined on material and supramaterial levels. This amounts to pantheism, the thesis that God is omnipresent with respect to the material universe. Now, if the universe were pluralistic or reducible to its parts, this would make God, Who coincides with the universe itself, a pluralistic entity with no internal cohesion. But because the mutual syntactic consistency of parts is enforced by a unitary holistic manifold with logical ascendancy over the parts themselves – because the universe is a dual-aspected monic entity consisting of essentially homogeneous, self-consistent infocognition – God retains monotheistic unity despite being distributed over reality at large.

  51. 51
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    Thus, we have a new kind of theology that might be called monopantheism, or even more descriptively, holopantheism. Second, God is indeed real, for a coherent entity identified with a self-perceptual universe is self-perceptual in nature, and this endows it with various levels of self-awareness and sentience, or constructive, creative intelligence.

  52. 52
    JT

    Oh no you don't! You haven't answered the question yet. How exactly does the universe have the attribute of self-awareness, and is mindlike, and what evidence do you have that this is the case?If this cannot be proven, then the rest of the "theory" falls apart.

  53. 53
    Mamba24

    Simply resorting to an argument from authority doesn't make your argument any more plausible, when we speak of scientific evidence, we are talking about a universally accepted peer-reviewed scientific theory…in which Chris Langan's theory doesn't fit…If his theory was correct then all scientists from around the world would be all over it. But this just isn't the case. It doesn't matter what the man's IQ is, it won't be an accepted theory unless there is evidence to support it…which there isn't.

  54. 54
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    Why, if there exists a spiritual metalanguage in which to establish the brotherhood of man through the unity of sentience, are men perpetually at each others' throats? Unfortunately, most human brains, which comprise a particular highly-evolved subset of the set of all reality-subsystems, do not fire in strict S-isomorphism much above the object level. Where we define one aspect of "intelligence" as the amount of global structure functionally represented by a given sÎS, brains of low intelligence are generally out of accord with the global syntax D(S). This limits their capacity to form true representations of S (global reality) by syntactic autology [d(S) Éd d(S)] and make rational ethical calculations. In this sense, the vast majority of men are not well-enough equipped, conceptually speaking, to form perfectly rational worldviews and societies; they are deficient in education and intellect, albeit remediably so in most cases. This is why force has ruled in the world of man…why might has always made right, despite its marked tendency to violate the optimization of global utility derived by summing over the sentient agents of S with respect to space and time.

  55. 55
    MJ

    "First, if God is real…"If god is real, we could all be turned into pancakes in a sec. However, you first have to DEMONSTRATE that god is real. How many times do we have to repeat that?

  56. 56
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    But although religion has often been employed for evil by cynics appreciative of its power, several things bear notice. (1) The abuse of religion, and the God concept, has always been driven by human politics, and no one is justified in blaming the God concept, whether or not they hold it to be real, for the abuses committed by evil men in its name. Abusus non tollit usum. (2) A religion must provide at least emotional utility for its believers, and any religion that stands the test of time has obviously been doing so. (3) A credible religion must contain elements of truth and undecidability, but no elements that are verifiably false (for that could be used to overthrow the religion and its sponsors). So by design, religious beliefs generally cannot be refuted by rational or empirical means. Does the reverse apply? Can a denial of God be refuted by rational or empirical means? The short answer is yes; the refutation follows the reasoning outlined above. That is, the above reasoning constitutes not just a logical framework for reality theory, but the outline of a logical proof of God's existence and the basis of a "logical theology". sry guys,Abusus non tollit usum.;)

  57. 57
    JT

    Yeah, he's definitely just ignoring us and copying/pasting.The conversation cannot resume until he answers the question.

  58. 58
    MJ

    Another comment of Mike got eaten by the spam filter…

  59. 59
    aramis

    Mike – I think your argument ignores the photothetically omnirelevance of ectoplasmic endocrinions doesn't it? Have you considered that if you subdivide the neural brain and coagulate it with raw chicken eggs, it renders your entire hypothesis unfallitible? Well, have you?Big words does not an intelligent sentence make. Stop telling us what Langan thinks and why, he's very unimpressive to me. Tell us what you think and why.

  60. 60
    Jeremiah

    First, if God is realThe problem is that you started with this statement. Your proof that god exists cannot rely upon the presumption that god exists.No, true geniuses are the ones who can distill their thoughts in such a way that their utility is clear to just about anyone.Well put Dorkman.

  61. 61
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    you guys are trying to censor me with your "spam filter" problems. i should have known you were too cowardly.

  62. 62
    JT

    Another comment of Mike got eaten by the spam filter…… not that we really missed anything.

  63. 63
    Dorkman

    Looks like we're dealing with the very definition of a godbot. He's got a program to run and it's read-only. I wonder why he wanted so badly to jump into a chatroom when he really just wanted to basically write a gibbering email. A bunch of Mike's yammering pastejobs have already disappeared into spam…

  64. 64
    MJ

    "you guys are trying to censor me with your "spam filter" problems. i should have known you were too cowardly."LOL. Nice way to get out while you still can. If you leave, you're the coward.

  65. 65
    JT

    I'm pretty much convinced he's "Andrew" from the other day.

  66. 66
    Mamba24

    I think we've all read your copy and pasted posts Mike, no one is spamming them to my knowledge.

  67. 67
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    i will admit the CTMU is suspiciously hard to understand.but you should at least debunk it, if you can.moving on, without religion life is meaningless because the heat death of the unvierse will end us.

  68. 68
    MJ

    I'm pretty much convinced even the spam filter thinks Mike is full of crap.

  69. 69
    Amber

    This is going to be the longest thread ever. Mike is copying and pasting from this:https://www.facebook.com/topic.php?uid=8798180154&topic=17912Christopher Michael Langan who supposedly has an IQ of over 200, and uses "binary logic" to prove god's existence.

  70. 70
    MJ

    "moving on, without religion life is meaningless because the heat death of the unvierse will end us."That also doesn't make any sense. I think my life is meaningfull. That's all that matters.

  71. 71
    Mamba24

    For some reason his posts do keep disappearing and reappearing when I refresh or post new comments, not sure what exactly is going on.

  72. 72
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    and moral laws impy a moral lawgiver.checkmate.

  73. 73
    Jeremiah

    Also, I would like to point out that being intelligent is not the same as being right. Isaac Newton was a brilliant man, he also advocated a number of batshit crazy ideas too. Don't tell us, boy that Chris Langan guy is smart. Tell us why we should believe any of this CTMU stuff.

  74. 74
    bigevy

    What does a train say? Woo Woo!

  75. 75
    Dorkman

    and moral laws impy a moral lawgiver.checkmate.Okay, I'm starting to think Poe.

  76. 76
    MJ

    Can we get the banana argument. Please?

  77. 77
    MJ

    "and moral laws impy a moral lawgiver.checkmate."I can give you moral laws if you want. It seems I've just proven I'm god…

  78. 78
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    go to 1:05 of this vid.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyd6om8IC4M&feature=relmfuthunderfoot never explains whats wrong with this ARGUMENT. he just ATTACKS the preacher because of the mix up of the name of the university. who CARES if it was Harvard or Nottingham. that doesnt mean the ARGUMENT is bad.that is the ad hominem fallacy.served.

  79. 79
    JT

    moving on, without religion life is meaningless because the heat death of the unvierse will end us.No, no moving on.How exactly does the universe have a mind, and is self aware(like). What evidence do you have that demonstrates this?This isn't a "debate" if you don't address the issues.

  80. 80
    Mamba24

    If you can't even understand the argument yourself Mike then you shouldn't be using it to try and validate your claims. "Moving on, without religion life is meaningless because the heat death of the universe will end us."LOL wow now you are just abandoning your last argument and pulling the "life is meaningless without religion card". Firstly, whether or not life is meaningful is up to the individual mind, not an external set of beliefs that a population may hold. The fact that we are born into this world, live for a short amount of time, then die…makes life more meaningful and valuable. If an afterlife existed then that would make this life less meaningful(IMHO)…So yes Mike, some day far far far far in the future our sun will die after going through all the phases of death(Red Giants, etc…), Life will no longer be able to exist…Sorry if that hurts your feelings, but resorting to arguments from Emotion doesn't make your beliefs anymore rational or justied. Try again buddy.

  81. 81
    Martin

    Mike, we wanted your arguments. We didn't simply want you to engage in a copy-paste orgy of pure metaphysical gibberish you cribbed from some fringe website whose pantheistic arguments I'm quite sure even your hero William Lane Craig would have no truck with. So again, why do YOU believe in God, and what evidence can YOU present us of his existence? Don't even pretend you know what this site you're pasting from is talking about. If we asked you this question on the street, you wouldn't have that at your disposal.

  82. 82
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    all my responses went to the spam filter. this is a rigged game!

  83. 83
    Mamba24

    Yeah I'm thinking this kid might not be for real either after the "Morals come from god statement"….Gee Mikey we neva heard dat one beeforah!!….Actually Mike you need to offer evidence for this assertion to be deemed justified. But we know you ain't going to do it.

  84. 84
    Mamba24

    This kid ain't for real..

  85. 85
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    bring back my responses from the spam filter?imagine if u were me how FRUSTRATED u'd be that all ur responses went to the spam filter?how FRUSTRATED would you be?

  86. 86
    Martin

    Mike, as you see, it is not a "rigged game." That is how theists play, not us. As you can clearly see, every comment of yours that gets hit by the spam filter is quickly rescued by us. So the whining isn't serving you well here.

  87. 87
    Dorkman

    go to 1:05 of this vid.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyd6om8IC4M&feature=relmfuthunderfoot never explains whats wrong with this ARGUMENT. he just ATTACKS the preacher because of the mix up of the name of the university. who CARES if it was Harvard or Nottingham. that doesnt mean the ARGUMENT is bad.If you keep watching the rest of the video, he explains why the argument is bad. But this is a non-sequitur. As JT asked: How exactly does the universe have a mind, and is self aware(like). What evidence do you have that demonstrates this?

  88. 88
    K. Andrew

    "the answer turns out to be a mathematical and scientific definition of God. "When were these definitions decided, by whom, and where can I find the "mathematical" definition to god?May prove to be useful…….

  89. 89
    Dorkman

    imagine if u were me how FRUSTRATED u'd be that all ur responses went to the spam filter?how FRUSTRATED would you be?Probably about as frustrated as anyone who has to try and parse meaning from posts so meaningless that they are indistinguishable from spam. Imagine if you were US.

  90. 90
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    without god, you wouldnt even have the ability to tell me that any action was good or evil.

  91. 91
    Martin

    I have no idea what's causing Blogger to keep filtering Mike. May have something to do with his IP. In any event, how FRUSTRATED would you be if a guy came along all cocky and aggressive, then failed to offer an original argument or even a cogent defense of what he was simply pasting from some website? I'd say very.

  92. 92
    JT

    That depends on what the definition of good/evil are.

  93. 93
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    without god, you cant explain:1. the unvierse2. life3. morality4. meaning5. why there are 2 billion xtians on earth

  94. 94
    optifaster

    Pretty sure Mike is just a kid who doesn't really know what's going on here.His claim that this quack preacher is so smart that he's hard to understand combined with his copy-paste nonsense replies leads me to suspect he himself doesn't understand the quackery but is trying to use it anyway…

  95. 95
    Mamba24

    "without god, you wouldn't even have the ability to tell me that any action was good or evil."Can you offer evidence that supports this bold assertion?…Come on Mikey, you know you're not for real..Come on fess up man…

  96. 96
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    fine, i will take you down RIGHT NOW.although religion has often been employed for evil by cynics appreciative of its power, several things bear notice. (1) The abuse of religion, and the God concept, has always been driven by human politics, and no one is justified in blaming the God concept, whether or not they hold it to be real, for the abuses committed by evil men in its name. Abusus non tollit usum. (2) A religion must provide at least emotional utility for its believers, and any religion that stands the test of time has obviously been doing so. (3) A credible religion must contain elements of truth and undecidability, but no elements that are verifiably false (for that could be used to overthrow the religion and its sponsors). So by design, religious beliefs generally cannot be refuted by rational or empirical means. Does the reverse apply? Can a denial of God be refuted by rational or empirical means? The short answer is yes; the refutation follows the reasoning outlined above. That is, the above reasoning constitutes not just a logical framework for reality theory, but the outline of a logical proof of God's existence and the basis of a "logical theology".

  97. 97
    Dorkman

    Wow. He's failed his way from the guy with the world's highest IQ to the Bill O'Reilly defense. That didn't take long.*psst* We actually can explain all of those things without positing deities.

  98. 98
    optifaster

    Oooh, shotgun approach!Mike.Without god it's much more informative to explain using evidence:1. the universe2. life3. morality4. meaning5. why there are 2 billion xtians on earth I just pwnt u.

  99. 99
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    if you fail to respond all my friends will know because they are watching this blog.

  100. 100
    JT

    *blows a kiss to all Mike's friends*Again. How does the universe behave like a mind, and what evidence do you have to support the claim?

  101. 101
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    stop filtering my responses.every time i own you guys you censor me like this is North Korea.

  102. 102
    Mamba24

    Actually Mike we can explain those five points you brought up….it's called "science".

  103. 103
    Mamba24

    "stop filtering my responses.every time i own you guys you censor me like this is North Korea."It's okay Mike, maybe change that IP address and you problems will be solved. You sound like the kid from the other day that flipped out on this blog and got permanently banned….

  104. 104
    Martin

    Mike, you're now simply deluded and lying.We are not censoring you. Blogger is feeding you into the spam filter, and I am removing your comments from spam. You know this. So to keep claiming otherwise and whining about North Korea (like that little bitch Andrew whined about "1984" — seriously, if you losers didn't have persecution complexes, you'd have nothing at all) makes you nothing but a liar.How do you think your god feels about that, huh?

  105. 105
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    why do you think people blow themselves up if god isnt real?you think they are just insane?like, o i will just blow up dynamite wrapped around my waist or i will fly a plane into a skyscraperif there WAS no heaven?

  106. 106
    Dorkman

    Okay, let me try my sophistry-to-English translator:(1) The abuse of religion, and the God concept, has always been driven by human politics, and no one is justified in blaming the God concept, whether or not they hold it to be real, for the abuses committed by evil men in its name. Abusus non tollit usum.Translation: just because people have done bad things in the name of religion doesn't make religion bad. My response: Sure. but as religion likes to claim to be a source of morality and decency, AND to be commanded from on high, we would expect fewer incidences of bad behavior from the religious, whereas if anything studies tend to show the opposite. (2) A religion must provide at least emotional utility for its believers, and any religion that stands the test of time has obviously been doing so.Translation: Religion makes people feel good.My response: That doesn't mean that they're true. Any number of lies can make people feel good. (3) A credible religion must contain elements of truth and undecidability, but no elements that are verifiably false (for that could be used to overthrow the religion and its sponsors). So by design, religious beliefs generally cannot be refuted by rational or empirical means.Translation: Religion intentionally obfuscates its claims and tries to avoid making concrete claims at all in an attempt to defy skeptical inquiry. My response: Skeptical inquiry responds to any claim with "prove it." A claim intentionally designed so that it cannot be demonstrated doesn't get very far. The response is not to believe an unsubstantiated claim, not to decide that it's so ephemeral we might as well believe it as not. Also, most religions DO make quite concrete claims that are readily studied and almost always false. Can a denial of God be refuted by rational or empirical means? The short answer is yes; the refutation follows the reasoning outlined aboveThere was no reasoning above, but yes, a denial of god can be refuted by rational or empirical means. Feel free to present some of that any old time now. That is, the above reasoning constitutes not just a logical framework for reality theory, but the outline of a logical proof of God's existence and the basis of a "logical theology".You have at no point demonstrated the existence of god. To recap, you've argued: 1) Bad people aren't religion's fault. 2) Religion makes people feel good.3) Religion tries intentionally to hide behind vague statements to confound attempts at rational inquiry. Where in there is evidence for a god?

  107. 107
    MJ

    MikeYou're telling us Islam is right?*facepalms*.

  108. 108
    Dorkman

    why do you think people blow themselves up if god isnt real?you think they are just insane?Yes. That is exactly what I think.

  109. 109
    JT

    Ah, so now the old "People wouldn't die for a lie" fallacy.How do you think the universe is like a mind, and what evidence do you have to back up the claim?

  110. 110
    Martin

    like, o i will just blow up dynamite wrapped around my waistor i will fly a plane into a skyscraperif there WAS no heaven?Spoken like a true believer, Mike.So a belief is proven true if the believer has such a degree of fanatical devotion to it, that he's willing to commit an appalling act of terrorism in its name?I think Hamas has a job for you, big guy.

  111. 111
    arensb

    the work of a certain D**** M****.Datt Millahunty?

  112. 112
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."why do you think people blow themselves up if god isnt real?you think they are just insane?like, o i will just blow up dynamite wrapped around my waistor i will fly a plane into a skyscraperif there WAS no heaven?" Your correct Mike, it's called being delusional. People convince themselves that heaven exists…so that they feel obligated to carry through blowing themselves up…It's a crazy world we live in Mike, with crazy people who have crazy deluded thoughts…Now you are resorting to arguments from ignorance…"Gee I can't think of any reason why people would blow themselves up unless god is real!"….Yeah we know you can't think Mike, that's why you fail at presenting any meaningful/rational/evidence supported argument and why we find you incredibly interesting. So what's next? lol

  113. 113
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    reality itself should be a set…in fact, the largest set of all. But every set, even the largest one, has a powerset which contains it, and that which contains it must be larger (a contradiction). The obvious solution: define an extension of set theory incorporating two senses of “containment” which work together in such a way that the largest set can be defined as "containing" its powerset in one sense while being contained by its powerset in the other. Thus, it topologically includes itself in the act of descriptively including itself in the act of topologically including itself…, and so on, in the course of which it obviously becomes more than just a set. In the Cognitive-Theoretic Model of the Universe or CTMU, the set of all sets, and the real universe to which it corresponds, take the name (SCSPL) of the required extension of set theory. SCSPL, which stands for Self-Configuring Self-Processing Language, is just a totally intrinsic, i.e. completely self-contained, language that is comprehensively and coherently (self-distributively) self-descriptive, and can thus be model-theoretically identified as its own universe or referent domain. Theory and object go by the same name because unlike conventional ZF or NBG set theory, SCSPL hologically infuses sets and their elements with the distributed (syntactic, metalogical) component of the theoretical framework containing and governing them, namely SCSPL syntax itself, replacing ordinary set-theoretic objects with SCSPL syntactic operators. The CTMU is so-named because the SCSPL universe, like the set of all sets, distributively embodies the logical syntax of its own descriptive mathematical language. It is thus not only self-descriptive in nature; where logic denotes the rules of cognition (reasoning, inference), it is SELF-COGNITIVE as well. SELF-COGNITIVE;) pwned

  114. 114
    Dorkman

    How do you think the universe is like a mind, and what evidence do you have to back up the claim?

  115. 115
    JT

    So how was the universe like a mind again? And what evidence do you have that supports that claim?

  116. 116
    Daemon6

    "Mike said… without god, you wouldnt even have the ability to tell me that any action was good or evil."Frankly, this doesn't make any sense what-so-ever. Until you demonstrate that there is an entity which can be classified as a "god" and then demonstrate that this being is as you describe it, it's utterly asinine to make a claim that anything is dependent on said being.Your arguments thus far have all the hallmarks of perception manipulation. You use words which (I'm basing this wholly on the level at which you've argued previously) you likely would not be able to use effectively on your own.Multi-syllable words are only an indication of intelligence if used correctly, and even then only if the content is cogent. The very purpose of complex verbage is to express a thought or idea in such a way as to be more easily understood.I will, however, add a caveat, as I strive to have an honest understanding. If you can, in your own words, restate what you are trying to say in such a way as to be readily understood then we (I'm making the presumption to speak for this forum's community) can start having an honest discussion about its strengths and weaknesses, and subsequently come to an understanding.Until then I, for one, have to disregard your attempts to "explain" as a failed play at impressing people with syllables.

  117. 117
    JT

    Geesh.. this conversation is going nowhere.

  118. 118
    DustFurn

    stop feeding the troll….

  119. 119
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    by the way,neuroscientists vilanyu ramachandran found out that you can still detect motion without being conscious of it. it is called "blindsight."since being conscious could have no evolutionary purpose, how did it develop?without god, we would be robots, like monkeys.

  120. 120
    Martin

    Epic eyeroll. Copy-pasting again.What evidence can present that the universe is like a mind? We're still waiting.Again, we want your answer, not some copy-paste from a bunch of crap even you don't understand.Every time you copy-paste, a baby angel dies screaming. Think of the angels!

  121. 121
    Mamba24

    Okay guys he is now resorting back to copying and pasting from pseudo-scientific websites….Then writing "owned" after doing it…Gee this guy is so smart, he is unlike any theist I have ever encountered! LOL This kid must be at most 14 years old..

  122. 122
    JT

    since being conscious could have no evolutionary purpose, how did it develop?without god, we would be robots, like monkeys.1) Being conscious keeps us alive.2) Monkeys are like robots? How do do figure?

  123. 123
    DustFurn

    seriously. do you not see that he is blatantly just trolling this blog? there is probably good reason the spam filter is eating his posts, his IP has most likely been flagged by multiple blogs/comment pages for exactly this sort of behavior.

  124. 124
    JT

    I wouldn't look at Koko and the kitten and say she's just a robot.

  125. 125
    JT

    Yes, DustFurn. I think he's the troll Andrew that I concluded was a troll in his yesterday's rant.I don't personally care.

  126. 126
    Martin

    since being conscious could have no evolutionary purpose, how did it develop?Wow. This is totally retarded even for a Christian.How could a being that was not conscious eat or reproduce?Duh.without god, we would be robots, like monkeys.Hint: monkeys aren't robots. However, you seem to be with God, and I imagine there are a number of monkeys out there who have a lead on you in the intelligence race.You haven't proven God exists yet. But you have proven your scientific illiteracy (not that we had any doubt of it).

  127. 127
    Mamba24

    Yeah he isn't for real, let Martin take care of it.

  128. 128
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    by DEFINITION, being aware of your actions has no effect on them.and therefore no evolutionary purpose.thus god.and why do you think every mind NEEDS TO HAVE A BRAIN. there could be a brainless mind, god's mind.

  129. 129
    Dorkman

    by DEFINITION, being aware of your actions has no effect on them.By the DEFINITION of what, exactly? "Aware"? "Actions"? "Effect"?and why do you think every mind NEEDS TO HAVE A BRAIN.Because we have not yet ever seen a mind that did not have a brain. Well, except maybe you.

  130. 130
    Mamba24

    "by DEFINITION, being aware of your actions has no effect on them. and therefore no evolutionary purpose.thus god. and why do you think every mind NEEDS TO HAVE A BRAIN. there could be a brainless mind, god's mind."LOL… Well until you can provide evidence of a mind without a brain I'm not inclined to think it's possible Mikey, but the floor is yours if you can provide some…

  131. 131
    JT

    by DEFINITION, being aware of your actions has no effect on them.and therefore no evolutionary purpose.thus god.Of course being aware of my actions can have an effect on them. I can improve on my actions, or discontinue them. If I realize I'm being an asshole, I can curb that.And no, not thus god. That's an argument from ignorance, because even if we didn't know the reason for it, you couldn't just leap to that conclusion without positive evidence that it's the case. You can't just assert it.and why do you think every mind NEEDS TO HAVE A BRAIN.Why does every computer program need to run on a computer? The brain is what "runs" the mind.there could be a brainless mind, god's mind.There could be. Now prove it.

  132. 132
    Blake

    I'm lost.

  133. 133
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    bacteria feed and reproduce. are they conscious?are slugs conscious?is a fruit fly conscious?is a human conscious?only sometimes. blindsight and split brains show that human faculties don't HAVE to be conscious. why don't ALL our faculties work like that?maybe some do. who knows.consciousness doesnt give your actions any extra GLOSS. being aware of your actions has NO effect on them, by DEFINITION.

  134. 134
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    name ONE human faculty that requires consciousness. monkeys do EVERYTHING without it. so do fruit flies. and everything else.when you kick a dog the dog does a PAIN BEHAVIOR but it does not FEEL PAIN.

  135. 135
    Daemon6

    "Mike said.. "why do you think people blow themselves up if god isnt real? you think they are just insane?"By that logic we're forced to believe everything that everyone tells us.Should we believe that aliens are abducting people because there are so many that have corroborating stories?Should we believe that some little girls in Nepal are really living goddesses?Should we believe the sociopath who kills people because they're in his mind stealing his thoughts?Should we believe that cultists who drink poison are really taken up to heaven in a spaceship?You can not draw a line that necessarily demonstrates the existence of a thing based on what individuals or groups do because of their belief in said thing."Mike said.. ;) pwned"That's more than a little pretentious considering that your entire argument is a cut & paste. To address the original author a natural progression of reactive elements is not an indication of intrinsic logic, nor is it in any way indicative of self-cognition.As an addendum, your entire argument is fairly ironic when overlayed with your underlying purpose (ostensibly, to prove that your particular brand of deity exists).The god you argue for would necessarily be unconcerned with the progression of human life, as we would be just another aspect of its existence. The abrahamic god was not only overly concerned to the point of being jealous of the attentions of finite beings, he was far from logical.

  136. 136
    JT

    is a human conscious?only sometimes. blindsight and split brains show that human faculties don't HAVE to be conscious. why don't ALL our faculties work like that?maybe some do. who knows.They're called "subconscious", the ones that aren't conscious. A lot of that is automated. What's your point?consciousness doesnt give your actions any extra GLOSS. I have no idea what you mean here. How can you "gloss" (make shiny) an action?being aware of your actions has NO effect on them, by DEFINITION.What definition are you using? Do you even know what the term "by definition" means?Some of your actions are conscious.Some of your actions are subconscious.Your breathing, for example, is usually on auto pilot. You can bring it into the conscious, and control it.

  137. 137
    JT

    I guess I'll check back in tomorrow and see if he ever has any evidence for the mind-like qualities of the universe.Not holding by breath, because it'll be on auto-pilot.

  138. 138
    The Invisible Pink Unicorn

    Okay, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank Mike for giving me 20 minutes of free entertainment.Dude, you managed to get almost all the major logical fallacies in on one blog post! And you're still going strong like a champ!*swoon*

  139. 139
    Isaac F

    Mike,I've read the thread thus far, and I think where you're failing is that you aren't really providing YOUR reasons that you believe there is a basis for believing in god(s), you're copy/pasting reasons from multiple unrelated sources.Here are my reasons for being an agnostic atheist:1) I have not been presented with sufficient evidence to support the idea that any given god exists. Because of this I do not believe in any gods. Therefore I am an atheist.2) The concept of a god allows it to exist outside natural existence as we know it. That makes it untestable. Because it is untestable I can not with 100% certainty say that it is not real. Therefore I am agnostic with respect to knowledge of gods' existences.Could you provide a succinct list like this, *in your own words*, why you believe god is real? Including external arguments such as kalam in your list of points is fine, but it's not necessary to copy/paste the entirety of the arguments' bodies. (The rate of your copy/paste posting could be contributing to your hitting the spam filter, btw.)

  140. 140
    Daemon6

    @dustfurn, It's entirely likely that he is :P. However, this particular ploy is fairly amusing so, as far as I'm concerned, I'm ok with it.

  141. 141
    Martin

    DustFurn: I am generally in agreement with you at this point. But I think this thread has been instructive (as well as entertaining), as it demonstrates the complete mental chaos that is the mind of the devout believer. I agree Mike is basically just trolling now. I don't think he is Andrew, because Andrew was never caught in the spam filter, and if Mike is continually being caught this way, I suspect he has a long history, under one or more ID's, of trolling atheist blogs in this fashion.Anyway, I think we've given Mike enough chances (we're at well over 100 comments in only a few hours anyway) to present a cogent argument of his own. Instead, he's made something of a spectacle of himself. He shows up here, acts all blustery and tough, promises to prove God exists in 10 minutes, throws Kalam at us, we smash it, throws the general first cause argument at us, we smash that, then he takes a wild left turn into wackytown by extensively pasting a load of obfuscatory nonsense from some pantheist website, without demonstrating he even understands the very material he's posting or that he can defend its points in his own words.Now he's flailing badly, no longer the cocky and confident alpha-theist he paraded as when he first turned up. In desperation he's hurling out appeal to authority/popularity fallacies, long dead moral arguments, and stuff that even his hero William Lane Craig would consider weak.So here you go, Mike. Heads up: NEW RULES.From now on your comments will not be automatically released from spam. We've been exceedingly fair to you, even at your most douchebaggy. The record is above, in case you think of whining about censorship again. Frankly, that won't play.If you copy-paste from another website, the comment will remain in spam.If you snivel about how censorious we are, well, boo-hoo, but that comment will remain in spam too.The only comments of your that will be allowed henceforth will be ones in which you, in your own words, present the reasons you believe in God, followed up by whatever evidence you can come up with to convince us. You said you could do this in ten minutes before. But of course, it's a different ball game when you have to do it on your own, and can't fling the arguments of others our way instead, isn't it.So that's how this is going to go from here on.If you don't like it, well, it's been fun.

  142. 142
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    name ONE thing we need consciousness for.in fact, some humans are not conscious in certain ways.some feel no pain, but they still have reflexes whena needle pokes them.and some may be fully unconscious. how would you even know?how do you know when you are kicking a person if they are even feeling the pain?they scream and you think "o no i hurt them" but i already explained that some people dont feel pain. Congenital insensitivity to pain

  143. 143
    Mamba24

    Bye Mikey

  144. 144
    Tom Foss

    without god, you cant explain:1. the unvierseCosmology.2. lifeBiology, abiogenesis.3. morality Moral philosophy, sociology, sociobiology.4. meaningPsychology.5. why there are 2 billion xtians on earthHistory. Specifically that people are often wrong. But here, Mike: how do you explain all those with God, in a way that doesn't ultimately lead to logical fallacies or just pushing the same questions back a level? In other words, when "god" is your explanation for the universe, then the question becomes "where did god come from?" It doesn't solve the problem, it just moves the problem up a step. Finally, Mike, is the CTMU argument for god's existence the one that convinced you? If so, then you must be able to put it in your own words rather than engaging in this silly copy-pasting. If not, then why would it convince us?

  145. 145
    Daemon6

    To follow in the footsteps of Mr. Isaac F.My reasons are fairly simple.The idea that a omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent being popped out of nowhere and then popped everything else out of nowhere is so patently absurd as far as I'm concerned that it doesn't even warrant consideration until it can be demonstrated that any such could possibly exist.Everything else is merely an addendum further driving a nail in that proverbial coffin.

  146. 146
    MikeTheInfidel

    This is fucking hilarious. Langan's claim to being the smartest man in America is based on an IQ test he took IN OMNI MAGAZINE, which was called "the world's hardest IQ test." The questions on the test have absolutely nothing to do with intelligence and everything to do with TRIVIA.Here's a sample question: "Pain is to Rue, as Bread is to ?"The answer is "street." "Pain" and "Rue" and French words for "bread" and street". It's a test full of shit like this that "measured" Langan as having an IQ of 195-210. Utter bullshit. This man is a crank, end of discussion.Mike, you're giving Mikes a bad name. Langan is spouting shit and you're swallowing it.

  147. 147
    Martin

    name ONE thing we need consciousness for.Um, okay. How about eating, walking around, holding down a job, talking, thinking, typing on a computer… Oh wait, you only wanted one.in fact, some humans are not conscious in certain ways.Talking to you, I fully agree.some feel no pain, but they still have reflexes whena needle pokes them.and some may be fully unconscious.how would you even know?That certain behaviors are indicated by those in an unconscious or semi-conscious state do not mean that there's no such thing as consciousness. Good grief.how do you know when you are kicking a person if they are even feeling the pain?they scream and you think "o no i hurt them" but i already explained that some people dont feel pain.But if they suffered that condition, they wouldn't scream when I kicked them then. Durp.being aware of your actions has NO effect on them, by DEFINITION.If I am aware I'm about to walk off a cliff, I will stop walking. If I'm not, well, I guess I'll die, won't I? So, like, there's your evolutionary advantage, dude.Honestly, it's amazing anyone could be as thick as to say the stuff you're saying with a straight face. But that's why these threads are so fun to read, aren't they?there could be a brainless mind, god's mind.Or a mindless brain, like your own. (rimshot)

  148. 148
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    lets turn the table. if ur an atheist, prove god doesnt exist.

  149. 149
    MikeTheInfidel

    In other words, Mike, Langan's claim of being incredibly smart is just as valid as a teenage girl's claim to be an expert on guys based on her results from a quiz in a teeny bopper magazine.

  150. 150
    MikeTheInfidel

    "lets turn the table."Man, you really like to explicitly state which fallacies you're committing!Prove Thor doesn't exist.

  151. 151
    Martin

    Sorry, Mike, you don't get to play that one either. The burden of proof always rests upon the person making the positive claim. You are claiming God exists. We are saying we don't believe you. Shifting the burden of proof is just another logical fallacy, usually resorted to when everything else the believer has tried has failed spectacularly.

  152. 152
    Mamba24

    "lets turn the table.if ur an atheist, prove god doesnt exist."Shifting the burden of Proof fallacy…You are making the positive claim, the burden of proof rests on your shoulder

  153. 153
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    this is proof god is real in 5 minutes. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZfFhA96uAIbut i know you are too scared to watch it. it uses geometry of circles.

  154. 154
    Tom Foss

    Mike has confused consciousness with sentience. A dog may have limited or no sentience, but it definitely has consciousness. Consider that a dog can be sedated–made unconscious. If it were not conscious in the first place, then where would the difference come from? Further, he fails to understand what blindsight is. In people with certain kinds of blindness, the part of the brain responsible for actually producing vision is damaged, but other parts of the brains still respond to visual stimuli, even if the person is not consciously able to interpret their visual input. This is a function of the fact that different parts of the brain govern different things, not some magical property of consciousness, nor is it some evidence that consciousness is unnecessary. There is a difference between being conscious, being aware, being able to process various stimuli on an intentional level, and being sentient, and Mike is apparently unclear on this. Further, Mike is engaging in a common mistake with regard to evolution. Let's pretend that consciousness is not evolutionarily advantageous, ignoring all the advantages that are provided by the ability to think abstractly, plan for and anticipate the future, and relate in complex ways to our environment and other organisms. Even if there were no advantage to consciousness, that is no argument against it being a product of natural evolutionary processes. There are many traits that propagate because they are linked to advantageous traits by virtue of being on the same chromosome, or because they are not deleterious, or because a population bottleneck made them common. There are almost certainly traits that propagate because they are tied to advantageous traits in ways that we do not yet know (e.g., a single protein produces both traits, or something). The idea that every trait must provide an evolutionary advantage in order to be passed on is the result of a very naïve assessment of evolutionary biology.

  155. 155
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    someone put rude comments on itso dont watch the video just listen to it.

  156. 156
    Isaac F

    if ur an atheist, prove god doesnt exist.Mike, to be an atheist is to lack belief in gods. It is not reasonable to ask someone to prove a negative.Example, a person who believes in the Loch Ness Monster, and a person that doesn't:A-nessist: I don't believe in Nessie.Nessist: Well prove that Nessie doesn't exist!Would it be reasonable to expect the a-nessist to drain Loch Ness and dig through every square foot of mud searching for dinosaur-like bones just to disprove the proposition that there's a monster in Loch Ness?I would say no, it's not. When one makes a positive claim such as, "The Loch Ness Monster exists" or, "God exists" the responsibility to provide evidence rests exclusively with the person making the claim.Do you accept that requesting that we prove a negative is unreasonable, or do you still have reasons remaining where you believe the responsibility rests with the atheist?

  157. 157
    Mamba24

    Wow what a day, this has been fairly entertaining. I've almost seen every logical fallacy…although I'm not sure Mikey was for real…then again there are a lot of thick people out there.

  158. 158
    MikeTheInfidel

    "although religion has often been employed for evil by cynics…"http://ctmucommunity.org/wiki/God#Logical_TheologyGo up two paragraphs from "Logical Theology" to see where he's copy/pasting from."reality itself should be a set…in fact, the largest set of all. …"That's from http://scientopia.org/blogs/goodmath/2011/02/11/another-crank-comes-to-visit-the-cognitive-theoretic-model-of-the-universe/And he follows up his copy/paste with ":) pwned" as if he has a single goddamn clue what he just pasted."and why do you think every mind NEEDS TO HAVE A BRAIN. there could be a brainless mind, god's mind."I think you're proof of a brainless mind, Mike.Wowsers, what a loopy troll.

  159. 159
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    stop blocking my comments. and the bible is 99.5% accurate with 5600 copies. thats more accurate that most greek ancient books like homer, lucretius, herodotus.you name it.would you just throw those books away?no, you wouldnt.but you dont like the bible because you are bigots.and if i cant use the bible then you cant use th eorigin of species.you are hypocrits.

  160. 160
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    plz stop blocking my comments. in daniel 2 neb. predics 4 empires that didnt exist yet.in dnaiel 12 it says there will be growth in technology and travel. explain these profecies. jesus born of a virgin LIKE IT SAIDin bethlehem LIKE IT SAIDpreceded by a messenger JOHN THE BAPTIST LIKE IT SAIDrejected by his ppl LIKE IT SAIdpierced in the side LIKE IT SAIDcrucified LIKE IT SAIDexplain the profecies.

  161. 161
    Owen

    Dude, just call into the show. Pick up the phone and push the pretty little buttons that make the pretty sounds and talk to the people on the magic devil box.

  162. 162
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    isiah 40:22 says the earth is a sphere. explain that.job 26:7 explains earth is floating in space.'splain it, son.

  163. 163
    Mamba24

    Nah they need some people who are actually serious to call into the show.

  164. 164
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    genesis 7:11 says there are valleys in the sea. did they have scuba equipment? no.did they hold their breaths for hours?no.how did it know.CHECK MATE.

  165. 165
    Isaac F

    I sometimes have a hard time differentiating between trolls and fervent theists. I can't tell which you are right now, Mike, but you don't seem to be answering any of our reasonable questions, so I'm leaning toward the former.I'm sure we're all willing to continue the conversation here, but there's a lot of open ends dangling that require your input to close. If you don't it shows that you aren't actually interested in accepting input and hashing your arguments out, but merely throwing ideas at our wall and hoping something manages to stick.

  166. 166
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    You made him [man] ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet…the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas,how did psalms 8:1 know about water currents?

  167. 167
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    STOP BLOCKING ME!

  168. 168
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    ok fine, the reason i actually believe in god is that there are things we dont understand, so i use god to explain them. and plus my parents taught me that and i went to church a lot so that made god my go-to idea for explaining things.but i have lots of things from the bible that prove god, if you would just stop blocking me!

  169. 169
    Michael Kingsford Gray

    I smell a Sokal… [en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sokal_affair]

  170. 170
    Daemon6

    I like MiketheInfidel's approach…@Mike, prove that Vishnu doesn't exist.If you're unfamiliar with who vishnu is, he/she/it is "the Supreme God in the Vaishnavite tradition of Hinduism."-wikipediaI certainly don't believe he exists, but there are millions who believe he does. Is it your responsibility to disprove it or is it their responsibility to provide proof.If the former, then good luck, because very likely whatever you bring to bear against that supernatural entity will very likely be applicable to your own.If the latter, well then, that would make you hypocrite.

  171. 171
    Isaac F

    the reason i actually believe in god is that there are things we dont understand, so i use god to explain them.This is referred to the God of the Gaps fallacy:http://goo.gl/83h69An excellent presentation by Neil deGrasse Tyson about the effects of god of the gaps on human progress:http://youtu.be/0vrpPPV_yPYand plus my parents taught me that and i went to church a lot so that made god my go-to idea for explaining things.It's natural to trust your parents' teachings, but just because your parents taught you your religion doesn't make it true.Did either of yours parents warn you to not go swimming after eating? Mine did, but the warning has no basis in fact:http://goo.gl/Ims3h

  172. 172
    Konrad Zielinski

    So I thought I'd have a little look at this Cognitive Theoretic Model of the Universe. Apperently it was actually published in a Journal: "Progress in Complexity"A little more searching finds this is an online only Journal. And looking at that list of Fellows we find:Surprise surprise Christopher Michael Langan. So he had his work published in his own journal. I tried to read the paper but did not find a single intelligible sentence. Other notable thinkers on the SOciety fellows Page include: Michael Behe & William Lane Craig. Hmm I may be seeing a pattern here.

  173. 173
    Spurll

    Because so much of this has been beaten to death, I'll just focus on one thing that Mike said in the previous thread:"matt said we have to rely on copies of copies of translations of copies.ok, do you apply the same standard of evidence to ancient greek writers like Herodotus, Lucretius, Scorates, and Homer?if you did you would have to DISCARD those texts. and the New Testament is 99.5 percent accurate with 5600 copies. so matt should apologize for this lie."Yes, we should apply the same standard of evidence. I would recommend, for example, that you take Homer's tales of sirens and one-eyed giants and men being turned into swine with a grain of salt.As far as Socrates goes, many scholars are uncertain that he did exist; but the ideas expressed by Socrates in Plato's writings stand or fall on their own merits, not because they originated with Socrates.We're not saying that you should "discard" the Bible; we're saying that you have no reason to conclude that it is an accurate account of history.Your arguments are made of FAIL.

  174. 174
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    its a hoax isnt it. damn it. well what am i supposed to use, tag fucking sucks. kalam sucks. fucking stupid.

  175. 175
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    what about biblical prophecies and statements about underwater valleys and stuff and the water cycle and currents and shit they didnt know back in the fucking ancient times.

  176. 176
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    maybe religion is just a big hoax. it still makes people behave good.and church is fun as you know if you ever went there. so argument from utility.

  177. 177
    Harker

    Totally worth taking time off studying to read that. I really needed a good laugh.

  178. 178
    arensb

    I googled some of Mark's word salad, and found that Mark Chu-Carroll has a couple of posts about the CTMU over at Good Math, Bad Math: "Two For One: Crackpot Physics and Crackpot Set Theory" and "Another Crank comes to visit: The Cognitive Theoretic Model of the Universe". His summary:"Stripped down to its basics, the CTMU is just yet another postmodern “perception defines the universe” idea. Nothing unusual about it on that level. What makes it interesting is that it tries to take a set-theoretic approach to doing it."And the gist of the first post seems to be that it's a lot of word salad. I know you're shocked to hear that.

  179. 179
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    my biblical evidence got deleted and martin put it back but now everyone has to go back and read it adn respond to it,. if you dont you will not be good atheists you will be lazy atheists.and by the way i think you are agnostics actually. see my william lane craig video i posted above.

  180. 180
    Kazim

    Mike, FYI, nobody has been "blocking" your comments. As I tried to explain at least three times earlier this evening, our automatic spam blocker is arbitrarily killing a bunch of posts that we didn't ask it to. We have been unblocking them, but both Martin and I were away for several hours.I have only now gotten home and let all your posts out of the box, and we're hoping that eventually the spam filter will settle down and stop bothering you. But TRUST ME, absolutely nobody here wants anything other than to let you go on with this stuff as long as possible.I haven't caught up with the thread yet, but I'll get right on that when I can.

  181. 181
    Harker

    Mike i don't think you're reallllly a christian I think you're an agnostic. I mean you can't know everything right? Think of everything you know and compare that to the total knowledge of the universe. Obviously you're really an agnostic. ;)Actually most of the people here would gladly call them selves agnostic atheists, and if you weren't such a lazy christian and actually informed yourself first you'd know that.

  182. 182
    Isaac F

    the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas,how did psalms 8:1 know about water currents?Thunderf00t did a video about this a few days ago:http://youtu.be/By17QNKQQ44 (Beginning 01:03)

  183. 183
    Harker

    And if you're bible is full of so much good science and understanding of the world why does it include a bunch of nonsense as well like:The moon is a light source like the sun (Gen 1:16)Some fowls are four-footed (Lev. 11:20-21)The earth rest on pillars (1 Sam. 2:8)Hares chew the cud (Lev. 11:6)To name a few. Why does an all knowing creator of the universe make basic errors about things it created?

  184. 184
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    god wants to test you. acting like this is not a good argument:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-qmglGWMsdkthat is NOT mature.deal with the argument.not just ad hominem ATTACKS.

  185. 185
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    he doesnt want to let gullible people into heaven so he tests you with dinosaur bones to make sure you actually know how to think for yourself not just listen to "experts".

  186. 186
    Isaac F

    Forgot to respond to this:and by the way i think you are agnostics actually. see my william lane craig video i posted above.I posted above that I'm an agnostic atheist and why. You're misunderstanding the terms.(A)theism has to do with the belief in gods. Think of it answering, "Do you believe in any gods?" Answering yes yields a theist, answering no yields an atheist.(A)gnostic in this context has to do with the conviction one has about their knowledge of the god proposition. Think of it answering, "Are you absolutely certain that your position on the existence of gods is 100% correct?" Being 100% sure of your answer yields a gnostic, not being 100% yields an agnostic.The two terms are used in combination:Gnostic theistAgnostic theistGnostic atheistAgnostic atheistMike, are you done posting your reasons for why you believe God exists? Posting challenges to come up with reasons for why such and such passage in the bible exists can be entertaining, but it doesn't get us any closer to understanding why we should believe your god exists. Please use the format I suggested above where you list all your best reasons so we can review and respond to them all accordingly.

  187. 187
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    if you pray, i SWEAR he will reveal himself to you.

  188. 188
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    you HAVE to be sincere. put on a straight face. and concenrate.and take a good 5 minutes.

  189. 189
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    when you get to heaven gaets what do you think will happen, do you think they will let you in if all you cared about was evidence?

  190. 190
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."isiah 40:22 says the earth is a sphere. explain that."Actually it doesn't Mike, it's "Circle of the earth"..not sphere, there's a difference. What this particular verse is saying is that when you look out at the earth from upon high, you look all around you and the land appears to be "circular." Implying a flat earth that's circular in shape. Of course it's up to interpretation as to what it specifically means, but it almost certainly does not explain the earth as a sphere….explanation complete son.Mike said.."job 26:7 explains earth is floating in space.'splain it, son."This particular verse is up to interpretation and most likely is referring to the "heavens" or what I would call it, "the Sky". Yes it appears that the sky is floating! But actually Mike the earth doesn't float, nor does it hang by nothing. The earth is constantly moving around the sun by a force we call gravity. And this verse isn't talking about that. You should know that the book of Job…is a book of poetry……there son I 'Splained it..

  191. 191
    Isaac F

    Unless you're going to put forth your compelling arguments for why you believe in your god, I think I'm done responding now.Good luck, Mike.

  192. 192
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    i really like this neil tyson vid. but he SAYS that 15% of THE MOST BRILLIANT MINDS IN OUR COUNTRY believe god.so obviously the burden is on atheists to prove why they DONT believe.

  193. 193
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."genesis 7:11 says there are valleys in the sea. did they have scuba equipment?no.did they hold their breaths for hours?no. how did it know.CHECK MATE." No it doesn't say there are valleys in the sea, it says.. "all the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened."This in no way implies that there are valleys in the sea. Nice try bud, but you don't get to claim "checkmate" by making up your own personal interpretation of a verse in order to try and show that the bible is true or divinely inspired. But I'm sure you didn't actually think of this on your own and actually got it from some creationist website. I believe all of your pawns,knights, bishops, rooks, and King and Queen have been killed long ago.

  194. 194
    Tom Foss

    and the bible is 99.5% accurate with 5600 copies.Define "accurate." If you're talking about accuracy between copies, then you've been misinformed. Per Biblical historian Bart Ehrman: "There are more variations among our manuscripts than there are words in the New Testament." If you're talking about accuracy with respect to reality, then you've been misinformed: the mustard seed is not even close to the smallest of all seeds, the sun does not move around the Earth, and bats are not birds (to name just a few). Assertions are not evidence, Mike.thats more accurate that most greek ancient books like homer, lucretius, herodotus.you name it.would you just throw those books away?Homer wrote mytholigized history. Herodotus was called "the father of lies." You're right, we don't throw those books away. We also don't believe everything they say. We believe the things that are reasonably corroborated and disbelieve the things that are not. For instance, "Homer" probably never existed as a single person, and the Iliad was almost certainly the compilation of a story told orally for many generations. We can discuss these matters because of the evidence that we have. Also, note that the Greek texts you cite are all a century or more older than the earliest Christian texts. And yet, while we can say some things with a high degree of certainty about the truth of Herodotus's writings or the existence of Homer, we cannot corroborate the existence of Biblical figures like Jesus or Moses any more than we can corroborate the existence of Achilles or Odysseus. So why should we believe your myths any more than we believe the Greek ones? and if i cant use the bible then you cant use th eorigin of species.We'll leave aside the point that the Origin of Species was based on well-documented evidence collected and compiled by a single known person only one hundred and fifty years ago, and corroborated by the independent observations of his contemporaries, in contrast to the Bible, which is the compilation of dozens of books written over a span of millennia by many authors, most of them anonymous, describing countless events which are either uncorroborated or flatly contradicted by independent evidence. We can even accept your premise: let's leave the Origin of Species alone. Instead, we'll rely on the mountains upon mountains of evidence for biological evolution that science has acquired in the intervening hundred and fifty years. Darwin is not our prophet, and Origin is not our holy book. There were many things that Darwin didn't know, and we have greatly improved upon his understanding. Unlike religion, science marches on.

  195. 195
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    right, fountains in the sea…VOLCANOS!JETS! all that stuff.for the VALLEYS see 2 Sam. 22:16"the valleys of the sea were exposed"you know what else was exposed?your ignorance.and your mother's breasts.during our make-out session

  196. 196
    Tom Foss

    isiah 40:22 says the earth is a sphere.explain that.We'll ignore the fact that the Earth is not a sphere, but a slightly pear-shaped oblate spheroid. We'll leave aside the fact that Isaiah 40:22 actually says the Earth is a "circle" with the sky stretched above it like a tent, which is more in-line with a cosmology which says that the Earth is a flat disc than one which suggests the Earth is spherical. That part of Isaiah was written around the 6th Century BCE; at the exact same time, Greek philosophy held that the Earth was spherical. Three hundred years later, Greek astronomers would confirm it several times over. Is that evidence that Zeus and Apollo are real? job 26:7 explains earth is floating in space.'splain it, son.Actually, it says that the Earth is hanging on nothing. Doesn't actually say anything about space. But then, 1 Samuel 2:8 and Job 9:6 say that the Earth is set on pillars. So which is it? Is the Earth floating in space, or held up by pillars? So much for that vaunted Biblical accuracy. genesis 7:11 says there are valleys in the sea. did they have scuba equipment?no.did they hold their breaths for hours?no.Did they guess? Probably. The same verse says that rain comes out of the "windows" of Heaven. Strange how we've never seen those, having gone into space and all. The Bible is the big book of multiple choice. Look close enough, and you can find support for any position, even a position as inconsistent as yours, Mike. You're happy to trumpet places where science eventually confirms things that you think the Bible says, and to claim those as proof that the Bible is true. But then, when science flatly contradicts your Bible, as in the discovery of evolution, you still claim the Bible is accurate and want us to ignore the science. You can't have it both ways, Mike.

  197. 197
    Mamba24

    "i really like this neil tyson vid.but he SAYS that 15% of THE MOST BRILLIANT MINDS IN OUR COUNTRY believe god.so obviously the burden is on atheists to prove why they DONT believe"Another argument from authority…Logical fallacy repeat. Shifting the burden of proof fallacy again… Failure to recognize that the claim.."15% of the most brilliant minds in our country believe in god".. is not a fact that supports his beliefs, meaning that 85% of the most brilliant minds in our country don't believe in a god…Although I'm skeptical of the survey statistics regardless.

  198. 198
    MAtheist

    @Issac F – I would even go a little further on your explanation to Mike that he seemed to miss the first time. When someone is asked if they believe in any god, a yes would be a theist. Anything else, not just no, would yield an atheist. Answers such as "I am not sure" or "I have no belief either way" would not fall under belief of a god.

  199. 199
    Rasputin

    "if you pray, i SWEAR he will reveal himself to you."I have.He didn't.

  200. 200
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    are you calling me a liar?thats rude.YOU are a liar.because ecclesiastes 1:6-7 PROVES the bible true.

  201. 201
    Mamba24

    "right, fountains in the sea…VOLCANOS!JETS!all that stuff."And once again you simply interpreted the verse to mean whatever you wanted it to mean. And you fail to understand once again that verses in the bible don't prove itself to be true…Epic fail."you know what else was exposed?your ignorance.and your mother's breasts.during our make-out session"LOL

  202. 202
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    josephus said jesus was the real deal.so did many historians.so did isaac newton, the founder of your precious science.so stop appealing to the authority of neil degrasse tyson and start arguing properly.

  203. 203
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    are you going matt slick, ray comfort, Dr. Craig, Dr. Falwell, and all these other guys liars?you should wash your mouth out with soap. and wash your ears out too so you can hear the evidence.

  204. 204
    MAtheist

    Haven't heard any evidence from them, or you either for that matter.

  205. 205
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    are you blind and deaf?do i have to mail a brail letter to you with the evidence on it?ecclesiastes 1:6-7. 'splain it, son.

  206. 206
    Mamba24

    "josephus said jesus was the real deal.so did many historians."Wrong Josephus is merely mentioning the beliefs of the christian movement regarding their savior figure, he doesn't himself claim to belief in the supernatural characteristics of Jesus…since Josephus was Jewish..Also Josephus didn't live in the time of Jesus. But even the few verses in his "Antiquities of the Jews" regarding Jesus are questioned by many scholars as to whether they are authentic. In either case, it doesn't matter who wrote what about Jesus…Because none are contemporary and none can verify any miracle claims. Many Scholars would agree that's it's likely that a Jewish rabbi from the first century B.C. by the name of Jesus may have existed. This doesn't support any miracle claims concerning him."so did isaac newton, the founder of your precious science."Argument form authority…No one cares what Isaac Newton believed about Jesus, he lived in the 17th century and has no better means of knowing or understanding the Jesus of the bible better than anyone today.

  207. 207
    MAtheist

    Once again, quoting passages from the bible does nothing to explain god. Why do you believe, other than you use god to explain what you don't understand, or it's what your parents taught you?

  208. 208
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    what is WRONG with you?i think your missing a part of your brain.what do i hasve to do, smack you with a leatherbound brail bible till you find yourelf to be satisfied with the proof?

  209. 209
    Martin

    Ecclesiastes 1:6-76 The wind blows to the south and turns to the north;round and round it goes, ever returning on its course.7 All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full.To the place the streams come from, there they return again. So the person who wrote this passage had the uncanny ability to observe wind and streams. Wow. Aristotle was doing much the same thing in 350 BCE.That there are accurate observations of the real world in the Bible does not make it true in its entirety, especially in regards to its supernatural claims.You just don't get how things are proved, Mike.

  210. 210
    Mamba24

    Good one Mike, keep telling yourself you have proof, you just keep embarrassing yourself and entertaining us! Just because you don't understand how science works or what evidence is doesn't make your positions true buddy. Next.

  211. 211
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    what proof WOULD you accept? so far the ctmu is "word salad", the bible doesnt count, josephus doesnt count, how about i just tell you the TRUTHUNLESS YOU ACCEPT JESUS YOU WILL BURN FOREVER

  212. 212
    MAtheist

    I guess that the fact that the bible is not proof is lost on you, and by failing to answer the questions put forth to you by many people here it appears that you have no good reason for believing in god.

  213. 213
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    how about this, smartass:HELL.does HELL sound like fun to you guys?does it sound like a pleasant experience?burning forever?then everytime your skin burns off it grows back and they start over fresh?that sounds like it would hurt like hell to me i dont know about you.

  214. 214
    Mamba24

    OH No! The threat of Hell!! lol The last resort from Mikey. Well Mike there isn't any reason to think that a place called Hell as described by your religion exists….So no I have no trouble with the threat of eternal torture…But even so just for fun…what if Hell was the real dwelling of god, and heaven was the real dwelling for the Devil? Or Maybe God is really the bad guy and Lucifer is really the good guy?..So maybe you do want to go to hell Mikey! Who knows? lol Pascal's wager is flawed buddy. Try again.

  215. 215
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    i will take your silence on my 8:42pm post as agreement that the bible IS true.i will see you guys at church,god bless,and remember john 16:16

  216. 216
    MAtheist

    Nope, hell does not sound like fun, doesn't make it true though. I mean really, a god that says worship me or else you will be tortured forever, and he says this to creations he made?Original sin – sure two innocent people without knowledge of good or evil are tricked by the king-of-lies into eating an apple – yea, that deserves eternal punishmentHow about this, I sent my son to die for you (for three days, which he knew about) to clear you of sins you were incapable of avoiding, so you need to worship me or get the eternal punishment you deserveYeah, hell, that proves it!

  217. 217
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."are you going matt slick, ray comfort, Dr. Craig, Dr. Falwell, and all these other guys liars?"I would call them dishonest, misinformed, deluded men who have know idea what they're talking about.(except in there own deluded ways)But I suppose I could call them idiots also…

  218. 218
    MAtheist

    I think the spam filter has become self aware and has formed its own opinion of Mike.

  219. 219
    Owen

    WWWWWWWWWWWWAAAAAGGGGGGSPIDERMAN ISSUE 1 SAYS A MAN NAMED PETER PARKER LIVESX IN NEWYORK AND FIGHTS EVIL USING HIS SPIDER POWERS!Its true cause my spidey senses tell me so, and its in the book!"are you going matt slick (discreditted), ray comfort (bananna man), Dr. Craig (your hero who refuses to call the show), Dr. Falwell (openly bigotted), and all these other guys liars?"Yup. Stop asking questions you don't want answered.By the way Mike, found something for you at Answers in Genesis. Check http://www.answersingenesis.org/get-answers/topic/arguments-we-dont-use

  220. 220
    MAtheist

    Mike said…i will take your silence on my 8:42pm post as agreement that the bible IS true.i will see you guys at church,god bless,and remember john 16:16so it would appear that the winner is …JTwho said …At the end, when none of us can understand what he's saying, and thus cannot refute it, he'll stroll away, with a smile on his face, confident that he "defeated" yet another group of atheists.at 2/16/2011 6:02 PMding ding ding

  221. 221
    Mamba24

    Bye Mike thanks for the entertainment!

  222. 222
    Jeremiah

    lol, I really hope that Mike is a sincere believer and not just a circle jerking troll. It would make him a singularity of every bad argument for god condensed into one human being. Like a bionic man of apologetics. Too bad that most of this crap was disposed of hundreds of years ago but as long as you sign off each message like an extra in an inner city gang movie then that makes it all right.

  223. 223
    Kazim

    Did anyone else notice that Mike worked a "Your mom" joke into his intricately crafted argument a few posts ago? I had to double check the poster ID to make sure somebody wasn't impersonating him, but it's the same guy. I swear he's just yanking our collective chains now.(Yanking a collective group of people being something that would come naturally to Mike, having had an expert teacher in his mom.)

  224. 224
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."what proof WOULD you accept? so far the ctmu is "word salad", the bible doesnt count, josephus doesnt count,how about i just tell you the TRUTHUNLESS YOU ACCEPT JESUS YOU WILL BURN FOREVER" I would accept evidence that supports your assertions. Since you have failed to provide any real evidence…you failed..Okay yeah sure we will burn forever, got it..lol

  225. 225
    Mamba24

    I think the "Your Mom" joke was aimed at me. lol

  226. 226
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."you know what else was exposed?your ignorance.and your mother's breasts.during our make-out session"I don't think Jesus would approve of this statement Mike…lol

  227. 227
    MAtheist

    I saw it, but it was hard to keep up with Mike's posts the way they kept popping in and out of existence.Maybe there is proof of the transcendental? (cue spooky music)

  228. 228
    Apostulous

    Holy hell, that was entertaining. Mike seems to be fallacious logic in the flesh.

  229. 229
    ernobius

    This Langan guy is presented exactly as a superhero, isn't he? He's said to be strong, saved his family from his brutal stepfather, he's a self taught genius AND he even has his alterego. Seriously, he should work at the Daily Planet.

  230. 230
    Martin

    By the time any theist has been forced to fall back on "Oh yeah…well…well…if you don't believe me yer goin' ta HAILL!!!1!", their game was over loooonnng ago.Still, pretty wild. First comment thread we've had hit nearly 300 in one night. Watch out, PZ! ;-)

  231. 231
    webjr

    While thanks for the entertaining posts. Mike your a child and you need to grow up and listen to your elders. I encourage you to fully read your Bible, study every word and complete sentences. Then study how that Bible came to be in it current form. How it start as separate books in different parts of the world(New Testament) and how the Old testament (Torah) was compiled together and some books dropped from the canon however other books that are in the Old testament reference them still.Everyone in this thread can see how you do not have an original thought in you all your postings. I do fell sorry for you and your little game your playing. Please learn and study as much as you can from all sources, then put together your own thoughts and get back to us grown-ups.good evening all,Bill

  232. 232
    Carlos O.

    I suspect this was an impressive troll.

  233. 233
    Strangelove

    Hey Mike, I don't want to be snarky, but if there is a god I'd suppose he would like you to defend him with some proper capitalization.You also seem a bit aggravated. Relax dude, you did your best to convince the evil atheists. That means major Brownie points with good ol' Yahweh. And remember, it's us who will roast in hell after all so you will have the last everlasting laugh.

  234. 234
    Martin

    Carlos: Impressive in his stamina, maybe. Not much else.

  235. 235
    Mamba24

    I think most people should read the bible simply to say that they have read it and because most theists don't actually read their bibles. It's good to know more about their holy book than they do. Get good versions with scholarly notes that explain the history of the bible as well.

  236. 236
    Carlos O.

    Martin: I agree, I was just amazed that he seemed to hit all the major logical fallacies and many of the most common already-debunked arguments. I mean, opening with first cause, turning to the bible as literal evidence, and ending with threats of hell… it's just hard for me to believe that he was a true believer. I really don't know, though- does that happen a lot in correspondence from sincere believers?

  237. 237
    Martin

    Believe me, there are plenty of True Believers out there exactly this irrational and confused, if not worse. And the loopier they are, the more scattered their thoughts, the less they possess actual facts, then the more confident they are that they are Absolutely Right — no matter how many times you point out the obvious holes in their knowledge and flaws in their thinking.Theists who are this beyond the pale aren't common, but when you do run into one, it can be an eye-opening experience. Most believers out there in the world are fairly normal in their thought processes, their ability to interact with the world. But…hand an irrational belief system to a person with one foot already in the Twilight Zone, give them the Dunning-Kruger level of unwonted confidence that religion is so good at inspiring, wind them up and watch them go.

  238. 238
    Las de l'amer repos

    I didn't see any comment on this one:"he doesnt want to let gullible people into heaven so he tests you with dinosaur bones to make sure you actually know how to think for yourself not just listen to "experts".I can't believe someone's mind would be so messed up as to make this argument. So for some reason God hates gullible people. And his big idea to sort them out is to tamper with the universe in such a way that it looks like there were dinosaurs on Earth. And now people have a choice to make: either they believe in a set of stories indistinguishable from any other mythology regardless of the evidence (AKA: "think[ing] for yourself"!), or you do follow the evidence and don't dismiss reality as a big farce some joker is playing on you to decide whether you're worthy to enter in La-La Land (AKA: "listen to "experts").The worst part of this being that it is meant to convince someone… There is not enough palms nor faces in the universe to convey the magnitude of consternation.

  239. 239
    a Nadder

    Definitely a Poe/troll, he hit a new logical fallacy with each post, posted with perfect incessance — and the way he worded each one sounded exactly like an atheist would when mocking a particular argument. Still, mildly entertaining at least in the self-righteous crankery about maths and consciousness!

  240. 240
    Trash

    Sorry, I'm late.The "set of all sets"-argument does hardly proof the existence of god. Mathematical evidence holds in mathematics alone, not outside.Math is created by us, humans. It is in out heads only. Sometimes we can see in nature that there is a particular mathmatical structure, like prime numbers or fractals. But that works only one way, if we look closer on the structure in nature and find that it only approximates prime numbers, we will not change the math.If this argument holds as a proof for other mathematicans (which i doubt), it will only proof that god is a consistent idea, still only an idea.

  241. 241
    Ben

    "name ONE human faculty that requires consciousness. monkeys do EVERYTHING without it. so do fruit flies. and everything else.when you kick a dog the dog does a PAIN BEHAVIOR but it does not FEEL PAIN."WTH? How do you get to the conclusions that monkeys have no consciousness, and dogs feel no pain? What is wrong with you?

  242. 242
    Ben

    "ecclesiastes 1:6-7 PROVES the bible true."The 5th sentence on page 35 in the 3rd Harry Potter book PROVES Harry Potter is real.

  243. 243
    french engineer

    Mike said… i really like this neil tyson vid. but he SAYS that 15% of THE MOST BRILLIANT MINDS IN OUR COUNTRY believe god.so obviously the burden is on atheists to prove why they DONT believe. You realise you have just said that 85% of "THE MOST BRILLIANT MINDS IN OUR COUNTRY" don't believe in God, right? You do know that 85 > 15, right?

  244. 244
    JT

    Ecclesiastes 1:6-7 (ESV):The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns. All streams run to the sea but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow there they flow again.This is proof the bible is true? Because someone made some basic observations about the world, but it in poetic form and slapped it in a book? How does this demonstrate zombies and walking on water?

  245. 245
    JT

    I take it he never got around to giving evidence that the universe is self-aware like a mind.

  246. 246
    Ben

    You beat me to it JT. -deleted double post-

  247. 247
    JT

    By the time any theist has been forced to fall back on "Oh yeah…well…well…if you don't believe me yer goin' ta HAILL!!!1!", their game was over loooonnng ago.You could sort of say that at this point, the thiest has God winned.

  248. 248
    JT

    what proof WOULD you accept? so far the ctmu is "word salad", the bible doesnt count, josephus doesnt count,How about following the scientific method and the standards of evidence? That would be a pretty good start.how about i just tell you the TRUTHUNLESS YOU ACCEPT JESUS YOU WILL BURN FOREVERCan you demonstrate this claim? I'm as equally fearful of hell as I am of being reincarnated into a dung beetle, or finding myself on the Barge of the Dead.

  249. 249
    MethodSkeptic

    All of Mike's "CHECK MATE" language reminds me of something Thunderf00t said once…arguing with a creationist is like playing chess with a pigeon: they knock over the pieces, crap on the board, then flap away back to their flock, burbling victory.Or, Thomas Paine, in The Age of Reason:"A religion thus interlarded with quibble*, subterfuge, and pun has a tendency to instruct its professors in the practice of these arts. They acquire the habit without being aware of the cause…"…Everything in this strange system is the reverse of what it pretends to be. It is the reverse of truth, and I become so tired of examining into its inconsistencies and absurdities, that I hasten to the conclusion of it, in order to proceed to something better."[*equivocation]

  250. 250
    JT

    this is proof god is real in 5 minutes. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZfFhA96uAIbut i know you are too scared to watch it. it uses geometry of circles.In short:* She starts off with the strawman that all atheists absolutely believe there is not god.* She then uses a venn diagram to show the atheist that he/she doesn't really know that much compared to everything in the universe (duh)* She asks if it's possible that god exists outside our knowledge (sure)* If you say yes, then you're really not an atheist.It's all wordplay. She goes from there to:* Then you're an agnostic* You call yourself a truthseeker, so why not find out why so many people believeAnd she wraps up with:"This approach has been very successful", and starts citing bible verses.Is this really what you consider proof, Mike? It's pathetic.

  251. 251
    Ben

    That video was more than pathetic. "but i know you are too scared to watch it."Oh, yes. I was shaking in my boots.

  252. 252
    sans_Dieu

    Wow. As soon as Mike isn't copying and pasting, his arguments and sentences are equivalent to his reasoning skills. Bravo!

  253. 253
    JT

    "if you pray, i SWEAR he will reveal himself to you."I have.He didn't.Seconded.Also, Newton invented calculus and proposed a theory of gravity. He didn't invent science.

  254. 254
    gaijin

    People, please, stop talking to him. This stopped being fun after the first 100 comments or so. The guy is a troll – it's painfully obvious. I think he's determined to throw at us every single logical fallacy that exists, and it sure looks like he's been just ticking off items on some kind of a logical fallacy list.So don't feed the troll. And I think we will be much prouder if we beat Pharyngula in the number of comments to a single blog entry while having a tad more productive discussion.Srsly. Destroying idiotic arguments coming from a troll is like competing with a disabled person – if you lose (not possible here, I know), so much more shame on you, and if you win, there's really nothing to boast about.

  255. 255
    JT

    We've already addressed this.While it may be the case, it's still informative. These are all points brought up regularly by theists, and it's an exercise for anyone interested in reading on understanding the arguments, and the counter-apologetics.I know I learn a lot seeing how different people on here respond to the same error.

  256. 256
    Trash

    40 posts without Mike. It seems like he did like Mark and hung up on us.I am disappointed, I liked to see the proof.

  257. 257
    Kazim

    Patience, guys, it was the middle of the night. Some people do sleep, you know.

  258. 258
    sans_Dieu

    People, stop.. after having read the full "conversation", I'm convinced, he is a fake. He's a guy who tries to make a point about stupid arguments. Just take in to account how he responded so far.Example:- He posts a link to an evangelist video clip on YT with trashing remarks in it. This clip is somehow proof, God exists.- The he says, someone put rude comments on it and we should just listen to it.- After all his gibberish attacks, he resorts to cheap arguments that are nowhere on the same level as his former attempts, such as: – ecclesiastes 1:6-7 proves the bible true – religion makes people feel good – if you pray, God will reveal himself to you – you will go to HellHe certainly has stamina, I'll give him that. And he proved, that we can be easily provoked to respond.

  259. 259
    sans_Dieu

    And all this from a guy who claims, he never lost an argument.

  260. 260
    JT

    So, wait, if someone says some stupid apologetic to me, I should avoid responding?That would be me being provokable, after all.

  261. 261
    Curt Cameron

    Uh, folks, didn't Mike admit above that he's just taking the piss (did I use that charming British expression right?)?He said:its a hoax isnt it. damn it. well what am i supposed to use, tag fucking sucks. kalam sucks. fucking stupid.Isn't he letting on that he's just here to yank chains and doesn't actually believe the crap he's posting?

  262. 262
    Martin

    sans_Deiu: (facepalm) Oh for fuck's sake.What is it with people who have decided that Poe's Law — the idea that no parody of religious belief could possibly be dumber than the real thing — actually means that there are, in fact, no real stupid Christians living in the world anywhere. They don't exist. Nope. And everyone stupid Christian you see raving on the internet must be a fake, because in real life, people that stupid simply cannot and do not exist.Know this: The world is full of people exactly as stupid as Mike, and in fact, he isn't even the worst example of the stupidity of the terminally religious. They're very real, and they're out there.I've explained this time and time again, and still, there's always someone so stunned by the spectacle of religious stupidity in full flower that their only reaction is denial. Nope, no way! Just can't be real, I don't accept it!Sigh. Whatever.Something else I've explained so many times I could scream: We do hear from Poes, but they are very rare. And they pretty much are always, distinct from the actual "law," completely obvious about it. They may exchange a couple of emails with us before going "Haha guys, just kidding," but never do they keep up the act so that a comment thread runs for nearly 300 entries.Just face the ugly truth. Religion makes some people desperately, appallingly stupid. Denying it won't make it go away.

  263. 263
    Martin

    Curt Cameron: No, I think it's just a sign of his overall state of confusion. I know it sounds like I've snarked a little hard on you and sans_Deiu here. I don't mean to, this is just a pet peeve of mine.

  264. 264
    Andrew

    I think the best suggestion is that Mike should call the show this Sunday. I'm sure he'd be bumped to the front of the queue.The problem — as almost everyone has demonstrated — is that Mike is incapable of actually *responding* to argument; when challenged, he simply moves on to the next, often contradictory, claim. Somehow, I doubt Matt D. will let him get away with that on the air.Finally: the Ecclesiastes 1:6-7 "argument" is a Ray Comfort/Todd Friel "argument" from Wretched Radio/Way of the Master Radio. Just so you know what you're dealing with, here.

  265. 265
    Joel

    A quick comment on the 'the universe is a giant brain' / 'the universe is concious!' argument, because it is one worth addressing.The assertion that the universe acts like a concious mind is one that gets banded around a lot, not just here by trolls. Mike was suggesting, in a vague, round about way (which he stole) that the universe could be modeled as a thing that acted like a concious mind. He then asserts that this mind is god, and therefore Baby Jesus and Christmas and so on.To which I might respond thusly; if we say that a proton orbiting the nucleus of an atom is like a planet orbiting a sun, therefore planets are protons. Therefore the solar system is a helium atom!Even if the assertion that the universe is like a concious thing (which I do not believe for a second, but nevertheless…) it does not mean it IS one or that said conciousness is necessarily an anthropomorphic super-genius with magic powers.

  266. 266
    sans_Dieu

    I don't deny that there are tons of stupid religious people out there. I just think this guy is a fake because his behaviour fits. Maybe this guy is legit, but in my opinion he is not. He acts so outragiously over the top! His constant cries about him getting edited or deleted, yet is has been explained numerous times what's going on.Granted, I'm not swamped with stupid emails every day…

  267. 267
    John K.

    It is pretty clear to me this guy is just throwing out random arguments to see how many responses he can get. He has not really responded to anything, and is doing his best to take advantage of the moderator's sense of fair play.Ban this troll already. It is like arguing with a pre-recorded television program.

  268. 268
    Jeremiah

    By the way, if you follow the links that arensb and MikeTheInfidel posted way back on page 1 recreated here and here for convenience that Chris Langan guy actually shows up to 'defend' his theory in the comments, but his defense is actually pretty similar to Mike here except longer and with actual grammar. He just goes on and on about how brilliant his own thinking is and how others are obviously morons for not understanding.

  269. 269
    Carlos O.

    Las:["he doesnt want to let gullible people into heaven so he tests you with dinosaur bones to make sure you actually know how to think for yourself not just listen to "experts".]My mother was a high school biology teacher in Texas for about 20 years, and she had students who were taught this at home, and believed it.

  270. 270
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    Matt Slick says:When debating skeptics, I often ask them to tell me what would qualify as extraordinary evidence for the resurrection of Jesus. Generally, nothing sensible is offered. Normal evidence would be written accounts. Extraordinary evidence would be a film, but we know that this extraordinary evidence is not reasonable since there was no film in Jesus' time. Therefore, can the requirement that extraordinary claims (Christ's resurrection) require extraordinary evidence apply to Jesus' resurrection? It would seem not. Since Jesus' resurrection is alleged to be a historical event, then it seems logical that normal historical evidence and normal historical examination of that evidence would be all we could offer. The resurrection is supposed to be an event of history and since it claims historical validity, then typical criteria for examining historical claims should be applied.

  271. 271
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    The skeptic often requires "proof" that God exists, or "absolute proof" that Jesus rose from the dead. I have heard many atheists, for example, say that the only proof they would accept of Jesus' resurrection would be if it could be tested using the scientific method. Of course, we know that is an impossibility since the scientific method means observation, experimentation, and repetition and we can't apply that to an event that occurred 2000 years ago. Atheists know this and that is why they require it; therefore, they are being unreasonable. Nevertheless, when the Christian fails to produce a scientific method or scientific evidence, the atheist feels vindicated.PWNED ;)

  272. 272
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    We do not apply observation, experimentation, and repetition to the subject of Napoleon's existence. The genre, history, does not fit that methodology. Yet, the skeptic will sometimes require that experimentation and repetition be applied to Jesus' resurrection, thereby, misapplying evidential and logical analysis.Furthermore, we cannot ascertain all things with absolute certainty. We cannot, for example, prove that Alexander the Great (356-323 B.C.) ever lived by observing him. But, we have ancient writings from eyewitnesses concerning his existence. Skeptics readily believe in Alexander the Great without involving the scientific method and without requiring "extraordinary evidence" yet they will require it of Jesus' existence.

  273. 273
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    However, a skeptic might say that Alexander the Great never claimed to have risen from the dead and that normal evidence would be sufficient to determine his existence with reasonable probability. But, Alexander the Great, according to history, performed an extraordinary feat. By the age of 33 he had conquered the known world. That is indeed an extraordinary event in history. So, I ask, "Where is the extraordinary evidence to back that extraordinary claim?" Has any skeptic in Christ's resurrection equally applied the principle of "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence," to Alexander the Great's conquest of the known world? If not, then this brings us full circle to the issue concerning presuppositions. With an atheist, for example, the presupposition that God does not exist means that the extraordinary claim of Christ's resurrection requires extraordinary evidence but Alexander the Great's world conquest does not, yet both are extraordinary claims of history. I can't help but notice the inconsistency.CHECKMATE deniers.

  274. 274
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    If it is true Alexander the Great conquered the known world by 33 years of age, no big deal. It won't have any effect on anyone and it won't change anything in anyone's life. But, if it is true about Jesus, then that is completely different. Jesus claimed to be divine and He had a message for people about heaven and hell and that salvation is only through Him. Such a claim requires extraordinary evidence, such as performing miracles and rising from the dead. The claims concerning Christ can have a profound effect on people and it can make them uncomfortable. Therefore, people will not want what Christ said to be true and will sometimes desperately try to hold onto their presuppositions; hence, the claim that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.Nevertheless, when defending the Bible and dealing with the claim that "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence," address the following issues.1.Will their presuppositions allow unbiased examination of the evidence? 2.What would qualify as extraordinary evidence? 3.What criteria is used to determine what is extraordinary evidence? 4.Are criteria for extraordinary evidence reasonable? NOW LET ME GETS OME POPCORN SO I CAN WATCH YOU STUTTER.

  275. 275
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    let me say that in my own words: "extraordinary evidence" is JUST A TRICK.you DONT use it for alexander the great.you ONLY use it for jesus.hmmm, i wonder why?just a coincidence?NO: IT IS BECAUSE HIS MESSAGE MAKES YOU UNCOMFORTABLE.it is a FORM OF DENIAL.IT IS IRRATIONAL.IF IT WAS RATIONAL YOUD APPLY IT TO EVERYTHNG NOT JUST THE GUY WHO SAID YOU ARE HELLBOUND.(and yes, i am a little bit proud that i just SMASHED you guys in front o fall my friends.);)

  276. 276
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    john 20:25-28. it gives an EYEWITNESS of someone seeing jesus rise from the dead.answer one question:why would someone lie about that?(rimshot)

  277. 277
    Mamba24

    lol Wrong again Mike…when ancient historians say he conquered the "known" world, they don't mean the "entire world", they mean he conquered the parts of the world that they were aware of, which extended from Middle-southern Europe to India. That's what they are talking about when they say "the known world" because that's the only part of the world that they were aware of so far. Turns out it isn't very much when we think about it today, but back then that was a incredible feat. But to address your copy and pasted post, this isn't an extraordinary claim, thus it doesn't require extraordinary evidence. We know the a King named Alexander III of Macedon existed from 256 to 323 BCE and we know he created a great empire. We have all kinds of accounts on his life that are from around that time period, we also have currency with his name and face on it. Mike you fail once again. Next.

  278. 278
    JT

    See that's why he was so desperate to get to a chat, so he could just quickly copy/paste a bunch of words he doesn't understand, and then assume that because it takes some time to parse and refute his walls of text, that somehow he's "won".

  279. 279
    Mamba24

    Extraordinary evidence would be required for miracle/supernatural claims that are found in ancient texts. The gospels of the new testament aren't the only ancient documents that have miracle/supernatural characteristics to them. It was a common thing in those days to include mythical components in the writings, especially if the writing was done years after the supposed event took place. In all cases, nobody is required to actually believe in the mythical supernatural parts of any ancient stories/histories. So you are now just resorting to emotional arguments like.."You just don't want to believe!".."It makes you uncomfortable!"….Hey Mike stop spitting emotional quibble at us and provide evidence that god exists…

  280. 280
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    if it was fake what about paul who converted because he saw jesus? why do all their stories match up, did they have a conpiracy? then what was the motive? where is the accounts of people who busted the conspiracy? doesnt sound like a conspiracy to me.

  281. 281
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    there were plenty of people, most of whom were still alive, and places to go to and check in order to expose the conspiracy. But we find NO (ZERO ZIP NADA NIL) contrary evidence or writings concerning the miraculous events of Jesus life, death, and resurrection.

  282. 282
    Kazim

    Mike, I'm not sure why you would think that there is any double standard for the evidence required of other historical figures. Historians are perfectly capable in all cases of distinguishing between unextraordinary claims about things that are conventionally verifiable; and claims which actually violate laws of physics and biology and are unlikely to be true.For instance:* Existence of Julius Caesar?- Pretty well documented by fairly conventional evidence.*The Roman Empire and Caesar's influence over it?- Again, documented from multiple independent sources, not extraordinary.* The claim that Julius Caesar was a demigod, directly descended from the Goddess Venus?- …Not so much.You'll find that this is the case with historians studying many different cultures and varieties of superstition. As another example, we accept that the Trojan War was an actual event, but we don't accept that Zeus and Aphrodite and the rest of that crowd were personally intervening at any point, even though lots of accounts say that they were. Why do you suppose that is?I think the issue is not that a double standard is applied by historians, but that you want your own personal religious stories to get a special exception from the normal rules, to be taken seriously without even passing the basic mundane standards of proof that is expected of every other discipline.And if you think about it, I'm pretty sure you apply this same sort of basic skepticism to many other claims. For instance, the Mormons believe that Joseph Smith was personally visited by an angel of the Lord who gave him a new book of the Bible, the Book of Mormon, inscribed on golden plates which conveniently disappeared after only Joseph Smith and no one else had a chance to read them.Do you believe this story? If not, why not?

  283. 283
    Mamba24

    Anything written about Jesus was written decades after his supposed death by anonymous authors, we have no originals and we have no contemporary accounts of him or his life from anyone…If such an extraordinary man with supernatural powers had existed, there would surely be many contemporary accounts on him from various people in that area and time period. But we don't…As we then turn to the new testament, the gospels don't read like eyewitness accounts, and there is contradictions between them and many supernatural claims. This isn't the same as we look into a man like Alexander the greats past..but in any case it doesn't matter Mike, because you still have to prove the miracle/supernatural claims are true. No one is saying that a rabbi named Yeshua didn't exist, there very well could have, but there is no reason to think he was anything more than just a normal man…So the floor is yours to prove otherwise.

  284. 284
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    joseph smith did not have profecies that came true. or eyewitness you could ASK. or stories about thing in real cities that youcould go ASK about.

  285. 285
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    Nothing of his great cities and civilizations in the Book of Mormon have been verified since 1830 when he published his book of Mormon. Smith's religion isn't based on historical fact with verifiable locations and events. Instead, it is based on a story that cannot be verified. This is not the case with the New Testament books. The Gospels contained records of Jesus performing many miracles and eventually rising from the dead in Jerusalem. He was crucified at the hands of the Romans who were urged by the Jewish Sanhedrin. This was verifiable at the time especially since names and places are listed in the gospels and epistles. All anyone would have to do is contact those people (or check the court records) and go to those places to verify the accounts.

  286. 286
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    YOU ar ethe ones who have to prove the crocoduck is real to drcomfort.why didnt you?there is a 10 000 prize. you could give it to charity!how come?and why dont you show dr behe what the flajelum does after you take away one of the peices?

  287. 287
    village1diot

    I can't believe I wasted an hour and a half reading comments just to realize that Mike is a dishonest troll. With all of his "checkmates" and celebrations of victory, one might even think his current middle school education may not be up to par.

  288. 288
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    what is the real reason you dont believe?dont say no evidence. because you were an atheist before you even KNEW the evidence of lack thereof.so obviously you ALREADY made up your mind BEFORE you saw what evidence there was.so what is the REAL REASON?are you afraid of hell?did you do something wrong?are you ashmed of yourself before jesus?

  289. 289
    JT

    YOU ar ethe ones who have to prove the crocoduck is real to drcomfort.why didnt you?If we were to "prove" a crocoduck, not only would it not demonstrate evolution, but would actually disprove evolution.That's because it's contrary to evolutionary prediction.

  290. 290
    Martin

    Sigh. Mike is just the Energizer Bunny of bad apologetics, isn't he?so what is the REAL REASON?are you afraid of hell?did you do something wrong?are you ashmed of yourself before jesus?None of the above, Mike. I was actually raised Christian, and only began to doubt the beliefs I'd been raised in due to — that's right — no evidence. In short, I began to think critically, which is what religion fails to teach you to do. I had questions for which I failed to get good answers. Meanwhile, everything I was observing in the real world was not lining up with what I was being told to believe.So no, we just don't have a burden of proof here, at any point. And you still simply do not know what constitutes proof or how to present it. Like this:joseph smith did not have profecies that came true. or eyewitness you could ASK.Neither does Jesus. The only claims of eyewitnesses you hear of are from the Bible itself. There is no independent way to confirm these eyewitnesses even existed, nor is there any surviving account left by any of them. If there were 500 witnesses to the resurrection, as Christians are told, where are their stories, in their own hand? We are simply required to take the Bible's word for it.

  291. 291
    JT

    what is the real reason you dont believe?dont say no evidence. because you were an atheist before you even KNEW the evidence of lack thereof.so obviously you ALREADY made up your mind BEFORE you saw what evidence there was.I'll say it anyway. Because of insufficient evidence. No other reason is needed to justifiably not accept the claim. Within the entirety of my entire life, I haven't encountered, observed or experienced one single supernatural anything, ever.The REAL question is, why would I believe?

  292. 292
    JT

    and why dont you show dr behe what the flajelum does after you take away one of the peices?Yes, it can operate as a syringe very well, which is also viable under natural selection. It just changes function.

  293. 293
    sans_Dieu

    The crockoduck is an apologist invention, based on a complete misunderstanding of evolution. Of course, nobody is able to prove it's existence.

  294. 294
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    what do you think ACTUALLY happened.was jesus real?did they smuggle his body out of the tomb?did they make up the eyewitnesses, or coach them?i'd LOVE to hear your theories.

  295. 295
    JT

    Nothing of his great cities and civilizations in the Book of Mormon have been verified since 1830 when he published his book of Mormon.This sort of argument in a nutshell:Damascus, as described in the Bible is true, therefore zombies, walking on water, and food replication.QED

  296. 296
    sans_Dieu

    what is the real reason you dont believe?are you afraid of hell?did you do something wrong?are you ashmed of yourself before jesus?These are not reasons not to believe the claims of Christianity.If' I don't believe in hell, I'm not afraid of it. If I would believe it's existence, then this would be an incentive to believe, wouldn't it?If I did something wrong, I choose not to believe in Christianity? Doesn't follow.Am I ashamed before Jesus? What does this even mean? In my perspective, someone named Yeshua might have existed. Why should I be ashamed before him, when this person is obviously dead and has no relation to me?All your questions point to the fact that you think we believe "deep inside" but stubbornly don't want to. That's not the case at all.

  297. 297
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    asahmed before the immortal WORDS of jesus, a man far greater than you.

  298. 298
    JT

    what do you think ACTUALLY happened.was jesus real?did they smuggle his body out of the tomb?did they make up the eyewitnesses, or coach them?i'd LOVE to hear your theories.I try to withhold judgement on things I have little information on. There's no point.For instance, as far as I know, Jesus existed, or he didn't. I don't know. I don't really care until the Christians meet their burden of proof to demonstrate, using the standards of evidence and science, that he did, and that he did the magical things, etc.

  299. 299
    Apostulous

    Doctor Comfort. ROFL! Pure gold.

  300. 300
    Kazim

    @Apostulous:Preachers today have it easy. Why, in Kent Hovind and Carl Baugh's day, a fellow had to actually go through the effort of obtaining a fake degree from a storefront university before he could earn the label "Dr". Nowadays the title is just handed out by supporters for free.

  301. 301
    Kazim

    @Mike:what do you think ACTUALLY happened.was jesus real?did they smuggle his body out of the tomb?did they make up the eyewitnesses, or coach them?i'd LOVE to hear your theories. With no solid evidence either way, I have no strong reason to explain anything in particular. My guess is that there may have been a guy named Jesus who said at least some things resembling what's written in the Bible; and then after he died, legends of what had happened grew up around him, much like the mythology that now surrounds Elvis. Many people heard the stories and probably sincerely believed them. I mean, if you can convince 39 California cultists to kill themselves so they can hop a ride on a comet, think how easily persuaded the early Christians were back then.

  302. 302
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."asahmed before the immortal WORDS of jesus, a man far greater than you. "I would disagree, I think most people are actually more moral than the Jesus of the bible. But whether or not Jesus was a real person is irrelevant… The more important thing you need to prove is the miracle/supernatural claims associated with him…

  303. 303
    Ben

    what is the real reason you dont believe?dont say no evidence. because you were an atheist before you even KNEW the evidence of lack thereof.so obviously you ALREADY made up your mind BEFORE you saw what evidence there was.My main reason was because I don't see any reason to believe something like that, when all the other stories about other gods were already dismissed as myths by just about everyone before. So why should it be true "this time around"?

  304. 304
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."what is the real reason you dont believe?don't say no evidence.because you were an atheist before you even KNEW the evidence of lack thereof.so obviously you ALREADY made up your mind BEFORE you saw what evidence there was."….No evidence buddy. lol You don' get to try and put or take words out of our mouths..We are all atheists when we are born, we just don't know it yet, then when you reach a certain age,your parents send you off to Sunday school where the brainwashing process begins… You lost Mikey, you're a loser Mikey!! lol

  305. 305
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    because god ssays so, and 2 billion people believe it.

  306. 306
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    AHAH!i knew there was proof of god!here it is!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ak5Lr3qkW0EUREKA!

  307. 307
    John Stabler

    At one time nearly everybody thought the world was at the centre of the universe. Didn't make it true did it?

  308. 308
    Kazim

    Aside:It's very frustrating to me that every single post of Mike's is being automatically flagged as spam, even after a full day of rescuing his posts from the spam filter, while nobody else is getting flagged.It doesn't seem to be tied to the content of the post. I wonder if it's because perhaps Mike has papered other blogger.com sites with comments in the past and THEY flagged him as spam?Mike, buddy, do you think that might be the reason? You can see I'm doing my best to ensure that you're not censored.

  309. 309
    Mamba24

    Mike said.."because god ssays so, and 2 billion people believe it."Argument from popularity Mikey, that a logical fallacy…Hey Mikey people 3000 years ago all believed the world was flat…Were they right simply because they believed that?…Does the fact that 90% of American children under the age of 8 who believe Santa exists mean that he actually exists?.. Hey Mikey…there is 7 billion people on this earth, if only 2 billion believe in the Christian god, then you guys are in the minority…That means there is 5 billion people who don't believe in the christian god..You fail again Mike. Try again.

  310. 310
    JT

    because god ssays so, and 2 billion people believe it.Argument from Popularity

  311. 311
    JT

    It's turned into some kind of Jeopardy-style competition to see who can name the fallacy first.

  312. 312
    Joel

    The life of someone like Alexander the Great (ATG) can be confirmed by sources OUTSIDE his band of devotees. It is claimed that he won battles at, say, Babylon. We can use archaeology to pin point a battle and fall at a date roughly correspond to ATG's claims. Moreover, OTHER PEOPLE, who were not too favourable, mentioned such battles and recorded them. Often with disdain, but still they recorded the events. Many sources will cross confirm to basics of the events. Now, what do we have with Jesus?Only accounts written decades after the supposed events, by zealots already hopelessly obsessed with the cult they've been sucked into. Stories rose about their beloved leader who died, and they drew on the popular myths and folk tales of the time to invent a new Jesus. That's why, for example, the gospel of John has Jesus performing miracles associated with Roman gods and folk heroes. Do you see? With ATG, there are outside sources beyond his inner circle. With Jesus, you get one bias view from his devoted and, let's face it, most likely deluded followers. And no one else. Did Alexander conquer the known world by the age of 33? Maybe, maybe not. Nothing is certain for such an event removed in time. There are only a few sources that give him an age (though many describe him as looking young). He built much of his empire off the back of his father's work and so had a platform. The military strategies claimed do not violet anything about nature. He doesn't call down fire from Olympus or anything like that. Jesus, on the other hand, walks on water, uses magic soil to cure blindness and feeds people with insufficient food stores. He's making claims that violate nature – those are the extraordinary claims. ATG's claims of godhood are generally ignored when considering his historicity. Do you want to claim that because some thought Alexander was a god and he won lots of battles against the odds that he therefore WAS a god? I doubt it.

  313. 313
    Ben

    AHAH!i knew there was proof of god!here it is!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ak5Lr3qkW0EUREKA!You can't be serious. Excuse my, while I go try find my butt again. I must've laughed it off somewhere.

  314. 314
    Kazim

    Mike, honestly, are you even watching the videos before you post them? I did, in fact, follow your link out of general curiosity, and I sat through nine minutes of Chris Langan basically wanking himself on camera, explaining how smart he is. The subject of God wasn't even mentioned at any point.Honestly, it's like you're so desperate to score points that you just flail around and throw whatever you can for us, hoping that somebody else is going to successfully argue in your place.

  315. 315
    TheDon

    Wow, I just got here and cycled through the entire conversation. Mike went from "Cognitive Theoretic Model of the Universe" to "Mother's breasts".We got a real winner here.

  316. 316
    JT

    You know Russell, you aren't Atlas. You can set the world down at some point. Mike's wisdom isn't that infinite.

  317. 317
    Elipson

    While Russel might not be Atlas, he surely is the Atlas of sarcasm!

  318. 318
    Ben

    Actually, Russell, the guy did talk about binary logic in the first 1 or 2 minutes, and also mentioned using binary logic for God. But after that, he never mentioned it again – in that first video anyway.

  319. 319
    Dave

    My favorite part of the Langan video is how he starts out explaining that yes/no questions are binary and only have two possible answers, then refuses to say yes or no when asked whether he is a genius.If this guy is truly a genius and his proof of God is based on the set of all sets as explained by Mike, he must be profoundly ignorant. If you look up "set of all sets" on Wikipedia, the second sentence in the entry "Universal Set" explains that the idea of there even being such a set is self-contradictory under standard assumptions.

  320. 320
    Tyler Olsen

    Off-topic: I am amazed at how many people in this community will continue to go to such lengths to entertain individuals like Mike. He has clearly and consistently expressed no interest in meaningful debate or intellectual discourse. What purpose is there in continuing to address him and his weak arguments?I don't mean to be insulting to anyone in bringing this up by the way (except perhaps Mike). Maybe you all have a lot more patience than I do. But when I identify someone like Mike who has poor communication skills, pathetically weak arguments (that he pulls from other sources, doesn't cite, and doesn't understand himself), and generally doesn't address/acknowledge logical points that the other side makes, I am quick to write them off as a dogmatic troll who is pointless in trying to have any sort of meaningful discussion with.

  321. 321
    Martin

    What purpose is there in continuing to address him and his weak arguments?Well, some of us find it fun. Also, it's a rare opportunity to find a believer who is not only a one-stop shop for every bad argument out there, but who is stubbornly willing to keep the game going long after most of the crowd has gone home and the opposing team has taken its trophy. It can be instructive for atheists who don't debate as often as others, to see what the apologetics and their refutations are — with a heavy does of comedy (tragicomedy?) thrown in.

  322. 322
    Joel

    @ TylerPerhaps we are wasting our time with Mike. But this kind of thing is good in many ways. One, it's good practice as setting out an argument (even if they don't read it). Secondly, it's good for onlookers and others who might not be on Mike's side or ours to be swayed.

  323. 323
    Kazim

    And also, Tyler, there's an audience. I am enjoying reading everyone else's comments at least as much as I am enjoying posting my own. It's a chance to spar, and it's fun. It's not for Mike's benefit, we're just grateful that he volunteered to be the foil.

  324. 324
    Tyler Olsen

    All good points. Thanks. I blame, in part, my training as an engineer for causing me to have such a low tolerance for incompetence. :p

  325. 325
    Nathan

    Mike said:"name ONE human faculty that requires consciousness. monkeys do EVERYTHING without it. so do fruit flies. and everything else.when you kick a dog the dog does a PAIN BEHAVIOR but it does not FEEL PAIN."It is this type of presupposition that reminds me of the fundamental differences in the brains of some humans versus others. What in the HELL would or could lead even the most feeble-minded nitwit to the conclusion that a friggin' dog isn't a conscious creature, and that kicking the damned thing isn't, to the poor dog, exactly the same experience as it is for, say, a blockhead named Mike?Why assume a difference in the level of consciousness? Because the mutt has a furry muzzle? Because it still has its tail? Because it can't say, in plain English "Hey, you bastard, that hurt!"??This mentality (or near absence of one) is how mindless peckerheads justify acts of animal cruelty. Why empathize with a creature who doesn't feel pain? Are you kidding me? Once a goddamned four-year-old kid develops a rudimentary theory of mind, even he suspects Fido is more than just an automaton.Apparently it's a lot easier for a mind like Mike's to *infer* the unknowns about the universe than the obvious about a monkey or a Mastiff. This is how I know we're always simply going to have to wait for entire generations to DIE off before humanity can inch forward. You can't retro-fit a complete idiot with a modern mind the way you can a '64 Chevy with a modern V8. You gotta wait until they're all in the junkyard for the newer, better models, unfortunately.

  326. 326
    EzE

    For once I want one of these apologists to tell me about this soul they keep talking about. That is what all this comes down to for me. You are giving all humans a supernatural importance that all depends on this soul or mind or whatever you want to call it. That is what will ultimately feel pain or pleasure based on our actions (don't know how without a brain or nerve endings but we will skip that for now). Please tell me what this soul is made from and where I can find it so we can start to really get to the bottom of this. Until then all any apologists are (imo) doing is spouting poetic nonsense. Come on, show me this soul. Point me to the passage in the bible where it tells us in what dimension heaven and hell are located. Make some scientific discovers using faith alone. Have god tell you how to make a 100% perpetual motor and actual solve real life problems. Show up or shut up.J/K, keep talking this is very entertaining.P.S. Hope there is a NON-Prophets this Saturday, I'm going through withdraw.:)

  327. 327
    Mike Haynes.

    Bible quotes and personal insults?That does it! Okay, at the next "Guys Named Mike" convention, we're voting this guy out!Neener neener….

  328. 328
    JT

    Don't be using the "No true Mike" fallacy.

  329. 329
    Patrick

    "you know what else was exposed?your ignorance.and your mother's breasts.during our make-out session"I'm glad to see that this is where Mike's argument for the existence of a deity ended up. Talking about boobs…classic!

  330. 330
    Pombolo

    "AHAH!i knew there was proof of god!here it is!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ak5Lr3qkW0EUREKA!"So, in repsonse to being accused of being a Chris Langan acolyte, uttely dependent on cut n' paste…… he cut n' pastes a link to a Chris Langan video. Cute.

  331. 331
    Daemon6

    Sorry about the double post :\@Hike"god wants to test you.acting like this is not a good argument:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-qmglGWMsdkthat is NOT mature.deal with the argument.not just ad hominem ATTACKS."First off, assertions such as "god wants to test you" do nothing to help your argument. You have yet to demonstrate that there is any such being, much less that this being cares at all what people do/say/feel.Second, I'm not entirely certain where you were intending to go with that.. Bill Hicks was a comedian, and as such his delivery was meant to be humorous, albeit caustic. However, his delivery did nothing to harm the question he was raising."he doesnt want to let gullible people into heaven so he tests you with dinosaur bones to make sure you actually know how to think for yourself not just listen to "experts"."I find it rather amusing that you claim that this deity does not want gullibility when the (supposed) criteria for acceptance is the unwavering adherence to an iron age compilation of unknown authorship which has been edited, revised, translated, and interpreted numerous times over, all the while denigrating a process which produces real world results that, though not exclusively, have been a tremendous benefit to humanity. A process, by the way, that has integrated mechanisms to reduce the chance of errors. And before you start pointing out instances where science was wrong, let me point out that it was via the scientific method that these errors were found, and that improvements were made by accepting the errors and correcting them; something which is completely incompatable with every religion I've ever heard of.And fyi, there are many here (I might even be so bold as to say most) who do not simply take the word of authority. Ironic that you say this yet most of your arguments are wholly taken from outside sources. -if you pray, i SWEAR he will reveal himself to you. -you HAVE to be sincere. put on a straight face. and concenrate. and take a good 5 minutes.-when you get to heaven gaets what do you think will happen, do you think they will let you in if all you cared about was evidence?You're effectively asking us to believe in order to believe. This is intrinsically flawed.Verify that the belief is warranted, and then I, for one, will give this a moments consideration.i really like this neil tyson vid.but he SAYS that 15% of THE MOST BRILLIANT MINDS IN OUR COUNTRY believe god.so obviously the burden is on atheists to prove why they DONT believe.This is so patently absurd that it makes me wonder if you're really a superbly talented troll :P.If you are a troll, then bravo.If you aren't… well…You entirely missed Mr. Tyson's point. He was trying to make the point that it should be considered bizarre that any brilliant mind would believe in something for which there is insufficient evidence. His point being that even the greatest minds come to a point where they don't have answers, and it's in those shrinking areas that people throw their preferred deity.right, fountains in the sea…VOLCANOS!JETS!all that stuff.for the VALLEYS see 2 Sam. 22:16"the valleys of the sea were exposed"you know what else was exposed?your ignorance.and your mother's breasts.during our make-out sessionHypocrite1- a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion2- a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings

  332. 332
    Daemon6

    Hell sounds like a fabricated scare tactic used to induce the credulous into fearful obedience.I for one do not fear hell because I have absolutely no reason to believe it exists other than your emotional pleas which, at this point, can only be a ploy to induce the same fear-based reaction.

  333. 333
    Daemon6

    @MikeAsserting that you have presented evidence when all you've done is post bad apologetics that you likely do not yourself grasp is fairly pretentious.

  334. 334
    coffeemachtspass

    I LOVED this bit:"without a guiding Entity whose Self-awareness equates to the coherence of self-perceptual spacetime, a self-perceptual universe could not coherently self-configure"Stare at it long enough and hard enough and it actually does morph into something meaningful.Translation: I now assert my pet theory which does not work. But if I invoke the aid of my Magical Helper, BY GOSH MY THEORY WORKS!Please insert -here- the sound of my jeering laughter.

  335. 335
    Jagyr

    Am I the only one for whom posts 401 and upwards won't load?

  336. 336
    Mike Haynes.

    @Brandon I think a few of the posts went to the spam basket and stayed there, but the counter was not reset. Just guessing.

  337. 337
    Mike Haynes.

    Actually watched part 1 of the Chris Langan video. It seemed like he was starting to go somewhere with logical absolutes and TAG maybe, but then he started bragging about how smart he was. All I got out of it was that Chris Langan is a big fan of… Chris Langan.

  338. 338
    Andrew Louis

    Ha-ha:So you've in essence tuned the whole of reality into a gigantic Cartesian sphere with Baruch Spinoza at the wheel. Langan in a class A Platonic d-bag who's still stuck in the enlightenment. [yawn]

  339. 339
    Wired For Sound

    "Genesis 7:11 says there are valleys in the sea. did they have scuba equipment?"Now you're just writing your own translations of the Bible?This is what Genesis 7:11 (NIV) actually says:"In the six hundredth year (sic) of Noah’s life, on the seventeenth day of the second month—on that day all the springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened."

  340. 340
    Andrew

    I can't see any comment post-400. I see I'm not alone in this.

  341. 341
    Murphy

    Even more confusing than mike's obfuscating language, is the question of how the shit this comment thread got so long…I mean really. Every one of his posts longer than a couple of sentences is nonsensical copy and paste. And then the rest of his posts basically one sentence gems such as this one "Mike said… and moral laws impy a moral lawgiver. checkmate."It seems pretty obvious to me. He's poeing you guys right?

  342. 342
    Sparrowhawk

    Again, Mike. You are setting off the spam filter by…well, spamming the thread with too many pointlessly short posts made one after the other.

  343. 343
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    you always ask for proof of god.HERE IT IS!!!!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QA0gjyXG5O0&feature=related

  344. 344
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    chris langan did a mathematical proof of god. arguing with that theory is like arguing with 2+2=4.it would be absurd.

  345. 345
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    now that we all agree, by langan's theory, that god is real, lets talk about which religion is the most likely.

  346. 346
    Kazim

    Mike, kindly keep your youtube links on threads where they are at least marginally relevant. You repeating the same link on unrelated threads like the "Zeitgeist" one is not helping your argument, and it's cluttering up the posts. Please stop. That's once that I'm asking nicely, and I'm cleaning up those other duplicates.

  347. 347
    MikeAdAstraSmith

    I CANT SEE THE NEWEST COMMENT

  348. 348
    Mamba24

    I thought we already determined that Chris Langan's CTMU model was a bunch of nonsensical BS that isn't accepted by the scientific community. He is simply some guy claiming to be a super genius of some sort and simply makes grand assertions and then equates them to Mathematics. This is in no way evidence of a "god", in order for it to be evidence it needs to actually make sense. Putting a bunch of big words together and saying I'm really smart doesn't make my assertions automatically true.

  349. 349
    Owen

    Great, he's got a methmatical proof, now we can get other mathematicians to examine this proof.Till it passes scrutiny, it's a conjecture, not a Theorum

  350. 350
    magx01

    Given enough time, all spools of yarn unravel….

  351. 351
    Apostulous

    Ahh joy of joys, Mike is back to pushing Langan's technobabble. It seems kind of odd, considering Langan's stuff seems to be more pantheistic, and then Mike goes on to try and push the idea of the christian god being the creator because of various verses plucked from the bible…seemingly by a blindfolded chicken."MikeAdAstraSmith said… now that we all agree, by langan's theory, that god is real, lets talk about which religion is the most likely. 2/17/2011 10:38 PM "All I have to say in response to that is: wow. Seriously, it's going to take more than that video to convince me of any gods existence, so I would get back to that if I were you.

  352. 352
    Daemon6

    I'm pretty certain that, regardless of what Mike actually believes and what his intent was initially, he has resorted to fairly blatant trolling :P.@Mike, If I'm correct, then I have to say that it was amusing at first, as you were on topic and playing the obtuse believer well, but I think you've lost your roll. In any case I'm done, the current gist of his ramblings has roamed well past the point of response (for me, at least).

  353. 353
    Pauk

    For some reason I can't read the most recent comments, so I don't know if this has been addressed yet, but can you guys please BAN THE FUCKING TROLL?Yes, I know you gave him an entire thread to go nuts in – but enough is enough. Whether he's a Christian troll or an atheist troll, he's a fucking troll.If anything, this illustrates how necessary the spam filter is – it was right from the beginning. Mike's comments should never have been let through.

  354. 354
    Martin

    Pauk: Yeah, if I'd had any idea this shit would run to well over 400 comments, I'd have nipped it in the bud. It stopped being amusing ages ago. You simply cannot argue with a mind as completely damaged as Mike's.It's time for this to end. Russell, leave his drivel in the spam filter from here on out, and let's move on with our lives.

  355. 355
    Apostulous

    Martin, I have to agree. This is like some bad episode of The Twilight Zone, or any day in an average youtube anti-atheist video's comment section. Before I started conversing with militant morons on the internet, my experience with them was limited to the very rare preacher on my college campus. The more I wade into the vast oceans that are poor theistic arguments, logical fallacies that contort the brain, and musings from people that read more like the ramblings of a 5th century Glenn Beck on LSD than they do the coherent thoughts of people with access to google, the more I wonder how we can hope to survive as a species.The really scary thing is, they give licenses to people like this; and they vote. Damnit, now I need a strong drink.

  356. 356
    Michael Kingsford Gray

    If the bible, or the qu'ran, or the bhagavad gita, had any scrap of veracity to them, you think that the VERY FIRST COMMANDEMENT would be:1) Wash your hands before touching food.But no.Not a bit of "germ theory" or "germ fact".The one thing that alone would have saved more of his chosen tribe (select group of filthy illiterate desired goat-shaggers here) from death and allowed them to flourish more than any single thing.Yes, it would have an even greater prophylactic effect than not coveting one's neighbours cattle, or even hacking off the end of half (or more) of the populations genitalia.Q: Why didn't your gods know this?A: Because they are imaginary.

  357. 357
    rhettboy

    Normally I'd hold off on proclaiming a Poe in pure text format, but this guy posts as if he has a checklist of the common fallacies that we've all seen, that he's using and checking off one after the other, which it seems more likely one would compile as an atheist who has argued with the religious from a bunch of different angles, than one would as a religious guy who has attempted to have a coherent (if ad hoc)set of reasons for their position. It seems more likely that one would have a single strand of what they think is airtight and foolproof argumentation, because thats all they themselves needed to be convinced. It seems unlikely that it'd come in the form of a rapid fire hodge-podge like this guy is doing.No arguments with Martin, though. People, not just religious people, people in general, are embarrassingly stupid, and completely genuine about it. I'm just questioning the genuineness of someone who is this embarrassingly stupid in this many completely disjointed ways of getting from Point A to Point B.

  358. 358
    Peggy

    Is that it, then? Mike just committed one fallacy after another and then quit? I was hoping for more.

  359. 359
    Ben

    If you can't see anything on the "newest" comments page, just click on "older" once and scroll down. Nothing is missing.

  360. 360
    Ben

    now that we all agree, by langan's theory, that god is real,Damnit. I keep having to look for my butt. I seem to have laughed it off again.

  361. 361
    Pombolo

    As it rolls to an end, I'd just like to say that entertaining threads such as this make this one of the greatest blogs to read.

  362. 362
    michael

    If only I could travel 2000 years in the future and see if after 4000 years of NO EVIDENCE of god the various Abrahamic religious cult members FINALLY get a clue and accept they have no credibility at all.2000 years and counting………..

  363. 363
    atlassoft

    Well Mike, I'm new here. Ran across this thread, and thought I'd respond to a couple of things. First of all, I appreciate that you've opened up near the end of this thread and stopped copy-pasting information from other websites. It's much more rewarding to make an argument in your own words, and in a way that you understand.Since nobody has addressed your post about the prophecies in the bible yet, I'll just do that."plz stop blocking my comments. in daniel 2 neb. predics 4 empires that didnt exist yet.in dnaiel 12 it says there will be growth in technology and travel. explain these profecies. jesus born of a virgin LIKE IT SAIDin bethlehem LIKE IT SAIDpreceded by a messenger JOHN THE BAPTIST LIKE IT SAIDrejected by his ppl LIKE IT SAIdpierced in the side LIKE IT SAIDcrucified LIKE IT SAID"First of all, the last six of these are unsupported by anything outside of the narrative of the religion which they are intended to support. In other words, it is possible that these stories were invented after the fact, in order to fulfill the prophecies. The historical evidence for these events is noticeably lacking (the earlies biblical texts were written decades after Jesus's supposed death). The first two illustrate a trend that you'll notice in biblical prophecies. That is, they are vague statements that almost anyone could have made. Is it really that far-fetched to say that people will have better roads to travel on and better technology in the future? This has been a trend in human history since the prehistoric age. Better harpoons, more aerodynamic spheres, rocks to hit together to make fires, wheels – all of these were developments in technology. Empires are a similar case. They rose and fell all the time in antiquity, and one could reasonably expect the trend to continue. As for water currents, these are readily observable by anyone throwing sticks into a body of water. It doesn't take divinely inspired knowledge to discover that they exist.I encourage you to try to formulate an argument for yourself that makes sense to you and is consistent with basic rules of inference and with physical evidence. If you find that you can't do that, you will know that you don't have a reason to believe that a god exists.

  364. 364
    Chris

    Sigh…guys next time, don't feed the troll.

  365. 365
    gsw

    Dorkman said… "No, true geniuses are the ones who can distill their thoughts in such a way that their utility is clear to just about anyone."And they are succint too … e=mc2 or a2+b2=c2 (2=quadrat) etc.Mike said: "In this sense, the vast majority of men are not well-enough equipped, conceptually speaking, to form perfectly rational worldviews and societies;"Finally something provable – and he has proved it – by example.

  366. 366
    gsw

    Dorkman said… "No, true geniuses are the ones who can distil their thoughts in such a way that their utility is clear to just about anyone."And they are succinct too … e=mc2 or a2+b2=c2 (2=sq.) etc.Mike said: "In this sense, the vast majority of men are not well-enough equipped, conceptually speaking, to form perfectly rational world views and societies;"Finally something provable – and he has proved it – by example.

  367. 367
    Jackson

    That was…fascinating. Watching as he suddenly shifted gears from pantheism to Christianity, seeing him stop copy-pasting and having his capitalization deteriorate as a result. I was in awe of his complete lack of self-awareness. Shame I wasn't here for the actually fun part.

  368. 368
    dffeoeye

    First of all, I highly respect all atheists because they have logical reasoning for their beliefs as opposed to people of religion. I just want share some of my thoughts. I am not religious. I don't believe in the biblical God, but I do believe in a creator. Here are some reasons why:A) Without being literal here, humans are the perfect being. Our design is amazing. I do not believe that evolution randomly produced complex, perfect individuals such as humans. Also, to add to that point, how do we explain the significance of man and woman. Clearly, this did not just happen randomly. The creator had a clear plan in mind.B) This is a little out there, but I believe that it is highly possible that everyone has a soul. We are more than a blank slate because that term best defines artificial intelligence, and humans have something that computers will never have. That would be free will but I don't know where to begin this search. Nobody knew about dark matter until there were devices capable of detecting it. This isn't as comparable, but gravity is undetectable, but we know that it is there because we are aware of it at work. Put short, I believe science has yet to develop the tools to prove the existence of this other worldly property.

  369. 369
    Badger3k

    Wow. Just…wow.

  370. 370
    Barbara_K

    dffeoeye – People are obviously not perfect. Why do we have wisdom teeth if we don't need them? Why do we have appendixes? There are animals with better eyes, better agility, longer life spans, etc. In what way are people perfect? The fact that you don't see how complexity could have evolved doesn't mean there's a creator – it just means you don't understand it.I don't have an explanation ready of how sexual reproduction developed, but it's hard to believe that there hasn't been an attempt to explain that (and by the way, evolution is not "random"). Even if there isn't a reasonable explanation at hand, I don't see how you can justify assuming that the existence of men and women is a sign of design, based solely on your ignorance of an alternative explanation. The same thing, the problem of making an argument from ignorance, applies to your opinion that people have souls. If you don't have evidence of something, why do you then leap to the conclusion that a creator is the explanation?

  371. 371
    dffeoeye

    To Barbara,I did not say that evolution was random. To rephrase what I said more clearly, what I was trying to say is that I don't believe humans were the product of this process as a matter of coincidence. Evolution certainly makes sense, but if its true, then my argument is that someone or something planned it out from the beginning. Sorry if I was unclear, I was trying to keep things brief. Also, I do think I was clear about the "humans being perfect, but not "literally perfect" part. Yes, I know we have flaws, but we are obviously at the top of the food chain. The human mind has extraordinary capabilities. With that said, I will disregard your comments about humans being perfect, but I will also admit that I could have defined what I meant by perfect, but as I said before, I was trying to keep things brief. I hope this clarifies some of the things I have said. Ok, I know the argument about the soul isn't strong, but its not ignorant. I don't claim that these assumptions are all true, I'm just sharing what I think so we can all elaborate on it. Thanks for the comment. :D

  372. 372
    Barbara_K

    Yes, you did use the word random. Now, you are using the word coincidence – evolution is not coincidental, either. If you don't believe humans were the product of evolution, on what are you basing this conclusion? There’s a difference between brevity and clarity – words mean stuff. The statement that humans are perfect, but not literally perfect, makes no sense. It’s either one or the other. If elaboration is your aim, then please elaborate.What is your evidence that something planned it out from the beginning? What is your evidence that there is a soul? If you don't have any, then you are using your lack of evidence (or ignorance) of how humans evolved to justify your belief that something planned it, or that a soul exists. What is your argument for the existence of a soul?I'd like to make sure that you understand the argument from ignorance fallacy, so that you don't make the mistake of thinking that, when someone points out that you are engaging in that fallacy, they are saying that you yourself are an overall ignorant person. One of the definitions of ignorance is to be “lacking knowledge or comprehension of the thing specified”. To engage in the fallacy known as the argument from ignorance is to use that lack of knowledge – in this case the specifics about the evolution of humans – as an excuse to support an unfounded assertion. This is also known as the argument from personal incredulity (think “this is so marvelous, I just can’t believe it happened without a creator”), and in the case of God claims, it’s known as the “God of the gaps” argument. We're all ignorant about something. As I previously stated, I am ignorant about current thinking on the development of sexual reproduction. If I were to use this ignorance as an excuse to make an unsupported claim about that development, then I would be using the argument from (my) ignorance.Some of the people from the show are involved in a Wiki project called Iron Chariots, and they have a page on this fallacy:http://wiki.ironchariots.org/index.php?title=Argument_from_ignoranceas well as others on other fallacies:http://wiki.ironchariots.org/index.php?title=Category:Logical_fallaciesThe point isn't to try to insult your intelligence, it's to develop skills to make sound arguments. You might find the information both useful and interesting as you try to clarify your positions.

  373. 373
    dffeoeye

    I acknowledge that I have lost his argument and that I severely lack sufficient evidence. I'm at a loss a words, but in a good way. You managed to point out numerous unsupported areas in my ideas and render them void. I honestly thought my arguments were valid or at least held some water, but after your response, I feel like the bucket was empty and that I never had a good argument to begin with. I now realize that I have to do a much better job of presenting my arguments. I'm a philosophical person by nature, but I lack the proper education in philosophy, so I did not take all of these complex concepts into consideration. The purpose of me sharing my thoughts was to test how strong my ideas really were, and I feel as I couldn't have gotten a better answer. I will study some so I can better present my arguments. Thanks for taking the time to explain everything, I really do appreciate it. I have a couple of questions and I don't take these topics seriously like most people so I hope you will feel comfortable answering them. I'm really curious. What are your beliefs? Have you received any education on philosophy? What were you taught to believe growing up, and what did you believe in as you were growing up?

  374. 374
    Barbara_K

    dffeoeye-I believe in honesty and individual freedom and in trying to make my beliefs fit in as much as possible with reality. I guess in the case of -isms I'd go with materialist consequentialist, but my understanding of moral theories is still pretty rudimentary. I have no formal education in philosophy. My husband and quite a few friends were philosophy majors, but I really didn't pay much attention to it until after I identified as an atheist and, being fairly political and wanting to stand up and be counted, started paying closer attention to the arguments other atheists were making. Out of respect for people I loved, it was important to me to be able to discuss my unbelief with religious/spiritual friends and family in the clearest way possible, and learning some basics about how to structure arguments has been very helpful with that. It's also had the unexpected benefit of making conversations more fun and rewarding, and I'm more comfortable with jumping into conversations that I might have found intimidating a few years ago.I was raised in a fundamentalist Lutheran church, but with socially liberal parents who stayed with that particular church for the sake of maintaining a relationship with the more religious side of our family. I believed in the triune God and the virgin birth but thought that the ethically questionable parts of the Bible were allegorical – basically if it felt good I believed it was true, if it didn't then I thought it must just be an allegory, and in general I really didn't bother to think much at all about the beliefs or how they conflicted. A conversation with a religious family member made me realize how thoughtless I was being about the whole thing, I decided to read up on various religions to try to find one that would be a fit for me, and long story short five years later I was an atheist.

  375. 375
    dffeoeye

    Wow, thanks for sharing your story. I like how you went about developing the skills to explain your beliefs to the people around you. I wish that method would work for me, but you have to first have people who are willing to listen to reasoning. I come from a christian background and my entire family is christian. I'm going to engage in some stereotyping here because although it is sometimes negative, it is still accurate and true. My family is African American, so they are serious about religion, and don't believe in anything else except for christianity. Point, blank, period. My mother is 57, so that severely decreases my chances of getting through to her on top of her already established christian beliefs. I'm not afraid or anything, its just that letting everyone know would do more harm than good. I haven't figured out a way to get around this dilemma without pretending. I don't mind going to church with my family or anything because I'm not serious about my beliefs, but I want to have some kind of solution for this problem in the near future. By the way, please excuse my ridiculous user name. When I first created a blogger profile, I was just trying to see how it worked, I wasn't into blogging or anything. Even after having said that, It will probably stay the same because I would rather not use my real name.

  376. 376
    Barbara_K

    Oh, your user name is fine, and anonymity is common.I’ve done most of my reading about philosophy and how to form arguments online. Iron Chariots is good, but I also like Austin Cline’s site:http://atheism.about.com/I was fortunate to have my husband and some more philosophical friends around who were supportive of my curiosity, that did help, but when I broached the subject with other friends and family members I was met with a lot of defensiveness, and in spite of how gentle and respectful I attempted to be about it I even temporarily lost a couple of friends. For the most part the question of belief with family and friends has settled into an agreement to disagree. I’ve read and listened to a number of comments online and calls on The Atheist Experience from people who are unable for any number of reasons to discuss their questions about religion openly with their family. You’re not alone in that, and you are in the best position to decide what approach is best for you, and if you even want to broach the subject with your family at all. There’s no reason to expect that you’ll be able to convince anyone to open their minds to questioning their beliefs, but you can find like minded people online, and might be able to meet people through a local MeetUp group. There are also resources online with information about black/African-American freethinkers.I also recommend going into the archived shows of the Atheist Experience: http://www.atheist-experience.com/archive/?full=1#table and listening to some of the calls that they’ve taken over the years to get a feel for the kind of experiences atheists and freethinkers have had, and some of the reactions you might expect to get from more dogmatic believers if you openly question their belief systems. Also, since it’s a live show it gives an indication of how those conversations go in real time as opposed to on a message board or in a comment section.

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