Bad Atheist Tropes

The Cuttlefish is asking what Atheist Tropes We Can Do Without. He’s got a bunch of good ones listed, but misses the obvious one despite noting their existence: the media, when confronted with the need to write something about those awful atheists, always turn to a simpering godbotherers like Barbara Bradly Hagerty or certifiable morons like Dinesh D’Souza for commentary. Hey, how about next time a pope dies or someone organizes a prayer rally, call me for an opinion? I’ll give you pith and sound bite.

Another one that infuriates me is the smug theist who wants to prove that I actually have faith in something, and the one thing they always choose is “love”. It’s invisible, isn’t it, just like god, so if you can believe in love, you must believe in god. Nope, sorry: I see evidence of love every day, and I can show it to you — and I don’t accept the existence of love that doesn’t demonstrate itself.

Comments

  1. jamessweet says

    I haven’t heard it in a while, but an infuriating one is when, after explaining that being an atheist doesn’t mean absolute certainty that there is no god, the reply is, “Well that means you are an agnostic, you’re not an atheist!” So many things wrong with that… First of all, by the more technical definitions, they are not orthogonal. Second of all, by the popular definitions, no I am not, that’s just silly, because then I have to be “agnostic” about whether PZ is really Bill Donohue trying to pick some extra cash moonlighting as his own enemy. I’m not “agnostic” about that, and I’m not “agnostic” (in the popular definition) about the existence of god. So don’t tell me I am!

  2. ambulocetacean says

    Tropes? PZ, you and Cuttlefish are only writing this stuff because you’re mad at God.

  3. Cuttlefish says

    No, ichiban-love, unlike god, exists in (and is defined by) our behavior. Believers are so accustomed to reifying abstractions that they have taken a very real thing and rendered it unreal, just so they can treat it the same way.

  4. peterwhite says

    What irks me is hearing both theists and atheists say that atheists deny the existence of god(s). We aren’t denying anything unless the actual existence of a god has been demonstrated.

    The other statement that I find bothersome is that atheists believe in nothing. I believe in many things. Most importantly, I believe in reality and all the evidence in support of it.

  5. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    The trope that annoys me most is when goddists tell me why I’m an atheist rather than ask me why. I’ve even had a goddist tell me my reasons were wrong when I explained why I didn’t believe.

  6. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    ichiban:

    Love, like god, only exists in people’s heads.

    So? Anger, happiness, sadness, etc “only exist” in people’s heads, too. Does that mean that they aren’t real?

    I haven’t looked at Cuttlefish’s post yet (I’m getting there!), but the trope I’m sick of is the assumption that I just need to “pick a religion”. Gah! Talk about missing the goddamn point!

  7. madknitter says

    The one that annoys me most is just being told, “no, you’re not an atheist,” because I’m not smart enough to figure out what I do and don’t believe.

  8. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Also, (courtesy of my mom): “Don’t you feel like you’re missing something?”

    No, Ma. No I don’t.

  9. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    If I start explaining all that is wrong with the Catholic Church, getting upset in the process, that means that I must believe in God but am trying to deny it because I hate the Church. Because apparently, I can’t be upset about all the atrocities caused and supported by CC for any other reason than their betrayal of God hurting me in my deep faith. I’m not sure how much that one is a trope, but I’ve heard it and hated it.

  10. Gregory Greenwood says

    ‘Tis Himself, OM @ 7;

    The trope that annoys me most is when goddists tell me why I’m an atheist rather than ask me why. I’ve even had a goddist tell me my reasons were wrong when I explained why I didn’t believe.

    Over on Cuttlefish’s blog I chose the ‘atheism is a religion too’ and ‘science is your god’ tropes that theists wheel out, but I also find the tendency of condescending theist to try to explain to me why I am really an atheist very irritating.

    The pretence of smug omniscience akin to that they ascribe to their imaginary god, the false concern, the raw cheek required to tell another person what they actually think as if you are a mindreader when all you have is confirmation bias and an ego the size of a continental landmass – it is all a reflection of the blinkered, moronic certainty of someone who has never bothered to stop to think, or alternately it is the whistling in the dark of someone terrifed that if they actually stop to consider their religion they will not be able to help seeing all the glaring holes in it.

  11. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    I get very annoyed with the, “Oh, once you have given up your anger, you will be able to accept gods’ love.” And I have had that tossed right in my face. On more than one occasion. Yeah. I’m angry at something that is immaginary. Right. Gotcha.

  12. shouldbeworking says

    “You’re just a physics teacher, what could you possibly know” is the one I get the most.

  13. DLC says

    no, sweetums, I’m not “angry with god” , I don’t “believe secretly”, and I’m not “denying Love”. What I am saying is : there is no credible, testable, falsifiable evidence that your supreme being exists.

  14. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    shouldbeworking:

    “You’re just a physics teacher, what could you possibly know” is the one I get the most.

    That sounds like a version of the “sophisticated theology” trope. As in, you just don’t understand the sofisticated theologie behind the religion and if you did, you’d “get it”.

    Jesus, I hate that one.

  15. Randomfactor says

    If the god-botherers want to put forth the suggestion that a god, like love, is a psychological state which influences behavior and exists within an individual believer’s skull alone…I could live with that definition.

    Somehow I think they’d have a few problems with the god-of-the-synaptic-gaps, though.

  16. articulett says

    I often ask people in what manner does their god exist– how is the existence of this god different than a non-existent god.

    When they say god is like love or try to point to other “invisible” things… I tell them I agree. There are feelings like jealousy and things like math or hegemony that are mental constructs and things like Zeus and Superman who are real characters in real books– but they don’t exist in real life– They exist in the material minds of humans.

    Of course, people believe their gods are more than that; unfortunately, for them, they are not able to demonstrate how.

  17. shouldbeworking says

    Yeah, Dr., my standard response (when my wife or kids aren’t around) is at least my DVD player isn’t flashing 12:00 all the time.

  18. Gregory Greenwood says

    Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel @ 17;

    That sounds like a version of the “sophisticated theology” trope. As in, you just don’t understand the sofisticated theologie behind the religion and if you did, you’d “get it”.

    Jesus, I hate that one.

    Yup, the ‘sofistimicated feeologee’ of the Courtier’s Reply – however one defines religion, they will always claim that your definition is wrong, and if you just used the right definition, then all would become clear and you would instantly embrace the sky fairy. Needless to say, many never go on to offer this magical ‘correct’ definition of religion, and those that do proffer something so vague and ill-defined that it is close to meaningless anyway, and in any case even if you were to try to engage with that definition, odds are the ‘true’ definition of religion would promptly morph again as soon as you started inconsiderately asking awkward questions.

    Intellectual dishonesty – no one does it quite like theists.

  19. razzlefrog says

    “You said ‘Oh my God’ before that rationalization. Poor atheist, doesn’t get the irony. See, you obviously subconsciously believe.”

    Grooooaaann…

  20. Randomfactor says

    Razzlefrog @24, I was once cut off by a large truck in freeway traffic while driving a religious friend of mine to Disneyland. I let out a “JESUS CHRIST!!!” in frustration. She immediately said “See? You DO believe!”

    I had to tell her that in deference to her presence I’d deliberately left out his middle name…

  21. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    “You said ‘Oh my God’ before that rationalization. Poor atheist, doesn’t get the irony. See, you obviously subconsciously believe.”

    A friend of mine proved that gods was real by pointing out that if I fell out of an airplane, I would scream, “Oh, gods” all the way down and that proved that gods existed and I believed secretly.

  22. saguhh00 says

    TO MAKE CHRISTIANS SHIVER, tell them:

    1-All Christians follow the Bible.
    2-The Bible is a compilation of books, which means that the books that are the Bible were put together to form the Bible.
    2-Who put those books together?
    3-The Catholic Church. Therefore, every Christian is following a book that the Catholic Church made with books they already had in their possession. So, why follow the book the Catholic Church made if you are not a Catholic?

    If you are a Catholic Christian, please tell me why I should believe a book the Catholic Church made. If the Catholic Church simply put the books that are the Bible together and did not write them, how did they find those books?

  23. raven says

    The one that is silliest is, “Why do you atheists (hate, angry, dislike) the gods.

    We don’t. Atheists get along really well with the gods, couldn’t be better. The problems we have are all with the self identified followers of the gods.

    Why do you hate god?

    Why do you xians hate Cthulhu, Mithras, Zeus, Odin, Ahura Mazda, fairies, and the Easter Bunny?

    Everyone is an atheist about most of the gods. Atheists just don’t believe in one more god than the xians.

  24. articulett says

    I see a lot of the “atheists believe the universe came from nothing” trope a lot.

    (I commented on why this one really bugs me on Cuttlefish’s blog.)

    Another one that makes me roll my eyes, is “atheists have faith the sun will rise…” (which apologist is responsible for that trope?) The sun appears to rise whether I believe it will or not; science tells me that it’s really an illusion of our planet rotating towards the sun.

  25. LightningRose says

    (Love is) Overrated. Biochemically no different than eating large quantities of chocolate.
    -John Milton, “The Devil’s Advocate”

  26. says

    Atheists have fangs in their buttholes.

    OK, maybe that’s not really one.

    Atheists are so arrogant, thinking they know everything. Otherwise they couldn’t claim to know that there isn’t a god. Totally missing the point that they should actually have evidence for the gods, not we who claim to have, or should have, evidence to the contrary.

    Glen Davidson

  27. Randomfactor says

    Another one that makes me roll my eyes, is “atheists have faith the sun will rise…”

    And predictions based on that faith can be tested and have so far turned out to be true 100 percent of the time. There’s something to be said for sun worship.

  28. raven says

    I see a lot of the “atheists believe the universe came from nothing” trope a lot.

    Yeah that one is pretty dumb.

    1. It’s not atheists who believe the universe came from nothing. This is a xian belief, creation ex nihilo.

    2. Modern physics and cosmology doesn’t say the universe came from nothing. We flat out don’t exactly know how our universe came about. Yet.

    But the current theories are that our universe is part of a multiverse that is eternal. There is even some key data on that point. The total net energy of the universe is zero. Why zero when it could have been any number?

    If the fundies would read some simple popular works by leading experts in the field, they would know this. It’s fear and intellectual laziness to keep repeating false sound bites they got off of CBN.

  29. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Another one that makes me roll my eyes, is “atheists have faith the sun will rise…”

    *boggled*

    Okay, so the sunrise is the work of god, then? Meaning if he could stop the sunrise if he wanted to? Do these idiots get confused by clouds?

  30. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    Atheists are mean because we are jealous of people of faith. [In my mind, that one goes together with ignorance is bliss, may both tropes die a thousand deaths. (I know that one death would do, but the former just sounds more dramatic. )]

  31. articulett says

    Do these idiots get confused by clouds?

    Probably- but if you really want to send them into a dither try magnets or tides.

  32. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    Do these idiots get confused by clouds?

    Only if you try to convince them that clouds are in fact not candy floss that floats down from the heaven.

    Ok, I just made that one up.

  33. articulett says

    Atheists are so arrogant

    – said by people who imagine the universe was created so they could exist!

    It’s not atheists who make claims of divine knowledge. It’s not atheists claiming to “know” which invisible beings are real and what they did, do, and think! This “arrogant atheist” trope is pervasive.

    And then there are the “militant atheists” (you know- the ones who do “militant” things like write books.)

    Oh– and the accommodationist (“Tom Johnson”) trope about the unnamed cabal of strident atheists out there being “dicks” and hurting some nebulous “cause”.

  34. says

    Here’s a recent example, albeit one of the stupidest IDiot tropes around:

    The intellectually honest (and intellectually fulfilled atheist) Darwinist should just say the following:

    You ID guys have made some good points. But I won’t, and never will, accept design as an explanation, because this is philosophically unacceptable to me. Furthermore, my goal is to suppress all dissent from my philosophical commitment, by whatever means.

    by Gildo, who is up to IDiocy’s challenge to be as ignorant of science as the writers of the Bible were.

    http://www.uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/why-dont-darwinists-just-say-what-they-mean/#comments

    Major problem with that one–the IDiots have never once made any good points, other than ones that are aimed at their own strawmen.

  35. articulett says

    “But you have to believe in something.”

    –not in anything supernatural. I don’t believe in any invisible beings. I think consciousness requires a material brain.

    Otherwise, I “believe in” the same stuff that most people “believe in”.

  36. Sastra says

    Cuttlefish #5 wrote:

    Believers are so accustomed to reifying abstractions that they have taken a very real thing and rendered it unreal, just so they can treat it the same way.

    Yup. I think a lot of people ordinarily have trouble understanding abstractions. They divide the world into things you can see and touch and pick up — like rocks, trees, and chairs — and things that you can’t see or touch or pick up — like thoughts, emotions, and concepts — and categorize them into separate realms. This causes problems, because that second realm (which would contain love, beauty, and freedom) is not filled with imaginary things, but real things. And the literal mind thus translates that into a semi-solid fuzzy halfway category called “spiritual.”

    Spiritual things are essences, or forces, or beings, or ‘energies.’ Like the wind but not the wind, like fire but not fire, like water but not water: “the awful shadow of some unseen power floats though unseen amongst us…”

    When atheists argue that the “spiritual” category is empty, religionists assume that means we must be denying, or ought to be denying, or are stuck denying the existence of everything they shoved into that category. Atheists don’t just deny God, they we have to deny love. One follows naturally from the other. We must not be able to “make sense” of it the way THEY do — as a mystical, magical, spiritual thing.

  37. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    These are all theist tropes. I suppose from the OP that “theist tropes” are what was intended.

    Here’s an atheist trope that I could live without: Let me tell you why I am an atheist…

    If you are speaking to theists, an explanation may be in order. However, atheist know the reasons that people don’t believe in God.

    So you don’t need to explain. The roast babies are over there and there are lots of goats to sodomize. We are a small club and all* are welcome.

    *Except MRAs, PUAs, accommodationists, and libertarians. And anyone I may have forgotten.

  38. Nutmeg says

    My three least favourites:

    1. “You’re not really an atheist, you’re agnostic.”
    I’m so freaking tired of being held to higher standards of proof than everyone else. A few weeks ago I snapped back, “If I’m agnostic, you’re agnostic!” at a Christian friend. She looked rather taken aback.

    2. “Something bad must have happened to you to make you stop believing.”
    This is followed by the believer over-analyzing your every word and gesture to try to figure out what the imaginary bad thing was.

    3. “If you hadn’t taken biology, you’d still believe in God.”
    No. I stopped believing in God because there’s no evidence for his existence and the Bible makes no sense. I know plenty of people who understand basic evolutionary theory and still believe in God – I just think they’ve failed to examine the evidence for their beliefs.

  39. says

    That we have “faith in materialism.” I don’t even like the term “materialism,” or “naturalism” for that matter, but I could still argue for them using the proper premises. The real point is that I believe (accept, whatever) evidence that all people normally do, and I throw out the junk “evidence” that they throw–up until their cherished beliefs are challenged.

    No, you know why supernatural explanations aren’t allowed in court? Because they’re based on figments of people’s imaginations. It’s ultimately not even due to separation of church and state, although that helps in the US, it’s because the evidence for the supernatural has always proven to be bollocks, and even most religious folk won’t subject their temporal, mortal lives and circumstances in jeopardy over claims about the “supernatural.”

    There is no more reason to accept bogus claptrap outside of the courtroom than in the courtroom, folks.

    Glen Davidson

  40. shouldbeworking says

    Sure, I believe in something. Try Newton’s three laws of motion. If you don’t believe in those, good luck trying to drive around my neighbourhood’s roads after last night’s snowfall. The evidence will be all over your car. But in mystical, invisible sky fairies who had people who spent too much time alone in deserts as the primary authors of “eye witness accounts”? Nope, not a chance.

  41. 'Tis Himself. Bah! Humbug even! says

    Antiochus Epiphanes #46

    Here’s an atheist trope that I could live without: Let me tell you why I am an atheist…

    I sincerely doubt many of us begin a conversation that way or steer it towards atheism so we can say that. Certainly I only explain why I’m an atheist in response to a question asking for that information.

  42. 'Tis Himself. Bah! Humbug even! says

    There’s another annoying trope: The Christian who thinks we’ve been raised by wolves in a cave and have never heard of Jesus.

  43. footface says

    “I have no problem with atheists, it’s those militant atheists I can’t stand.”

    “But why do you care that people believe in God?”

    “That’s not what religion is. You don’t know anything about religion.”

    “Atheists are so arrogant, putting humanity, instead of God, at the center of the universe.”

    This one isn’t about atheists, really, but “Of course I believe in microevolution, but macroevolution has never been observed.”

    “Oh, yeah? Then how did life on Earth begin?”

  44. Azkyroth says

    “Of course love exists – as a subjective experience in the self-analyzing abstraction-from-physical-brain-states we call the ‘mind’ of the person experiencing it. Love is just a feeling.

    So are gods.”

  45. otrame says

    Somehow I think they’d have a few problems with the god-of-the-synaptic-gaps, though.

    I wasn’t doing anything with this internet, so here, you have it. (I had just swallowed my hot apple cider, so you don’t owe me a new keyboard).

  46. shouldbeworking says

    They would have problems with synaptic gaps until ou explained what thy were, then the real troubles would start.

  47. Jim says

    Hi PZ,

    My answer to christians and any emotional state, such as love, is that it is a bio-chemical event. Hence, it is not invisible, and it can be expressed in a chemical equation. Since you’re a biologist and didn’t mention it, I just want to make sure I’m correct here.

    If you happen to read this would you comment on it. I’ll be checkinfpg back later.

  48. Happiestsadist says

    Like I said at Cuttlefish’s (which dovetails nicely with Nutmeg’s second point at #47), the idea that I only am angry at god about the whole PTSD thing. And the years of daily pain thing. And the depression.

    I was an atheist before those things, and my lack of faith in nonsense has generally made those things more bearable. I’m ill, not being punished for some vague sin. My illnesses and experiences are grounded in reality and the measurable. And so is getting better from them.

    I do love the idea that apparently atheists don’t feel love. I mean, theists have to delude themselves that atheists are unhappy somehow, but damn. I have two partners who after years still make me grin like a fool, write poetry, come up with little surprises whenever I can to make them happy. I have my family, who’ve had my back at my worst. I have my friends, who stand by me even if i can’t imagine why sometimes. Hell, I have my ancient, toothless, neurotic cat who’s snuggled up to me through hundreds of flashbacks and anxiety attacks. All that, and I get woken up with a kiss on one side of me and purring on the other at noon on a Sunday. Methinks some theists are, as they say on the intertubes, srsly jelly.

  49. bovarchist says

    From the title, I thought PZ (and Cuttlefish) were asking for examples of things said by atheists that we could stand to lose. Which would have been a more interesting topic. These are really just the same old theist tropes.

    Me, I’d like to see an end to the old “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof”, which has become as hoary a cliche as 747s in a junkyard, and while pithy, was never really more than an ill-defined escape hatch to dismiss certain types of evidence anyway. Who decides what counts as extraordinary?

  50. 'Tis Himself, OM. says

    Who decides what counts as extraordinary?

    I do. You’re trying to convince me to accept your proof, so I get to decide if your proof is good or not.

  51. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    I’d like to see an end to the old “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof”, which has become as hoary a cliche as 747s in a junkyard,

    Except that “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof” is not an appeal to ignorance nor is it an appeal to miracles (if that even counts as a fallacy). When I was 10 and my best friend told me that his father dated Racquel Welch, that’s an extraordinary claim (and no, he was never able to back it up). When a creationist claims that gods created the tetrapod eye, that is also an extraordinary claim (and no, they are never able to back it up). The difference between claiming a tornado in a junkyard created a 747 and claiming that evolution through natural selection created the eye is that we can trace the evolution of the eye (more than one type of eye, too (hell, trilobytes had two different types of eyes)), and can back up the evolutionary argument with actual evidence.

    So I disagree with you on that one. Extraordinary claims really do require proof (evidence). And the more extraordinary the claim, the more extraordinary the evidence needed.

  52. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Who decides what counts as extraordinary?

    It also says that for a stupornatural explanation to be taken seriously, the level of evidence must be more than barely suggestive, which is typical of the evidence people try to present for the stupornatural. Rather, that the evidence must be totally conclusive, allowing no other explanation, along with mechanism.

  53. Aquaria says

    Me, I’d like to see an end to the old “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof”, which has become as hoary a cliche as 747s in a junkyard, and while pithy, was never really more than an ill-defined escape hatch to dismiss certain types of evidence anyway. Who decides what counts as extraordinary?

    Congratulations. You just qualified for stupid things atheists say.

    1) The exact phrase is “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” Do keep up.

    2) Extraordinary claims do require extraordinary evidence. When you make claims that defy all known evidence of how the world works, you’d better fucking well show your work for why that could happen, and not rely on that hoary delusional chestnut of “Gawdidit!” That’s not fucking good enough.

    Let’s give an example of an extraordinary claim:

    You have christards alleging that a Roman Empire-era immortal deity died (the contradiction never fucking occurs to them), rose from the dead (contradiction still being glossed over), hung around for 40 days, and then got sucked up into the clouds. Not only that, when the immortal supposedly died, there were allegedly earthquakes and graves opened up and zombies walked around.

    I’m sorry, but there are part of this story that are extra-ordinary? What about them would any sane person NOT need extra-ordinary evidence to support? When was the last time you knew an earthquake to spit out zombies? When was the last time you saw somebody sucked up into a cloud on a calm day?

    Use your head for something besides a hat rack, dumbass.

  54. Margaret says

    Atheists just don’t believe in one more god than the xians.

    We don’t believe in one more god than a Muslim or Jew, but we don’t believe in three more gods than the Xians.

  55. says

    It baffles me how the observation that some claims require more to back them up than other casual claims, especially when the claim has huge implications, is a controversial statement for some people.

    I imagine these are the same people who keep Monster Cables and the invisible rust inhibitor factory in business.

  56. says

    Any new claim, especially one that goes against past ideas, requires rather more, or, often more decisive, evidence than does something that fits with the reigning concepts. But does this make the required evidence “extraordinary”? Was there anything extraordinary about the evidence for plate tectonics in, say, the 1950s? Was there anything really extraordinary about the “bent” light that did much to confirm general relativity? It was just a prediction that held up–and if it seemed “extraordinary,” that was just because people hadn’t expected light to be “refracted” by gravity.

    Nonetheless, as a quick quip against someone’s “evidence” for magic and/or the supernatural, it’s hard to beat “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” It’s just saying that my claim of seeing a muskrat in the pond nearby may or may not be true, but there’s no reason for you to doubt it, given that I’m not a frequent bullshitter. When I claim that a fairy was flitting among the cattails, well, that requires “extraordinary” evidence, that is, let’s go back to the etymology (and still a possible meaning, so it’s not just BSing to go back to the etymology) and note that it has to go beyond the “ordinary evidence” that was accepted for the muskrat claim.

    I think it’s fair, though, to say that “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” doesn’t really tell us much about science standards. We just need sufficient evidence for anything (which also doesn’t tell us much, but it points to the science, or even legal, standards), but clearly it takes more evidence to be believed that Bigfoot is in the woods than that an elk is.

    “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” is the quick way to point out that the extraordinary claim needs more evidence to count as “sufficient.” For many people not versed in science, it’s really a good way to make your point without getting into the details.

    Glen Davidson

  57. says

    I read today that half of Americans are now poor.

    An atheists wet-dream. Survival of the fittest…

    This quote is great because it wraps up just about all of them

    a) Atheists are dangerous and undermine society
    b) Atheists lack morals
    c) Atheists just want to sin
    d) Atheists worship Darwin.

  58. David Marjanović says

    The other statement that I find bothersome is that atheists believe in nothing. I believe in many things. Most importantly, I believe in reality and all the evidence in support of it.

    A case can be made that “believe in” isn’t quite the right term. You know it’s there.

    So? Anger, happiness, sadness, etc “only exist” in people’s heads, too. Does that mean that they aren’t real?

    ichiban didn’t say love “isn’t real”.

    The total net energy of the universe is zero.

    To be fair, that’s not known with a lot of precision. It’s somewhere close to 0, sure, but we don’t know if it really is 0.

    But if it is, we’re looking at an uncaused quantum fluctuation.

    3. “If you hadn’t taken biology, you’d still believe in God.”

    Never mind whether that’s wrong, it’s telling.

    In several ways.

    I don’t even like the term “materialism,” or “naturalism” for that matter

    I like “physicalism”.

    “Materialism” has the problem that matter is just another form of energy – but not “energy” in the woo sense.

    I get woken up with a kiss on one side of me and purring on the other at noon on a Sunday. Methinks some theists are, as they say on the intertubes, srsly jelly.

    I know I am!!!

  59. saguhh00 says

    People need to realize that it is not the Bible or the Quran or the Vedas that make us moral. It’s ourselves. By the way, my post called “to make christians shiver, tell them” is only an attack on those who say the Bible makes us moral and that the Bible is what gave us knowledge.

    To all Christians who were offended by my older post, I am really sorry for that, I was a fool to post that.
    I made a very serious mistake when I posted that, because I now realized people will think I’m attacking them personally. Here is the post again:

    TO MAKE CHRISTIANS SHIVER, tell them:
    1-All Christians follow the Bible.
    2-The Bible is a compilation of books, which means that the books that are the Bible were put together to form the Bible.
    2-Who put those books together?
    3-The Catholic Church. Therefore, every Christian is following a book that the Catholic Church made with books they already had in their possession. So, why follow the book the Catholic Church made if you are not a Catholic?
    If you are a Catholic Christian, please tell me why I should believe a book the Catholic Church made. If the Catholic Church simply put the books that are the Bible together and did not write them, how did they find those books?

    Also, if someone who can erase my other post is reading this, please, erase my other post.

  60. says

    “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” could give the wrong idea to some people, who would think that some hallucination they had that gave them “the Truth” exactly meets such a criterion. Or that “speaking in tongues” gives evidence that their religion is true.

    Here’s David777, just from a short Google search:

    When Jesus makes contact via the Holy Spirit then one knows
    what the real Truth is.

    This is the real extraordinary evidence.

    http://www.talkjesus.com/church-sermons/39485-extraordinary-claims-require-extraordinary-evidence.html

    Does he know that this doesn’t really “count”? Probably, but you can play with the word “extraordinary” in order for pure bunkum to pass as “extraordinary evidence.”

    I do think that “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” is far from a perfect response to dubious “evidence.” There just isn’t a quick way to really encapsulate how it is that you need so much more evidence for your woo claim, or claim of the novel entity or phenomenon that nobody else (or few, anyway) noticed, because the “ordinary claim” already has loads of evidence behind its existence.

    That’s why I wouldn’t throw out that phrase, but I still think that we should be well aware of its shortcomings.

    Glen Davidson

  61. geoffreybrent says

    @Saguhhoo (#27) – “So, why follow the book the Catholic Church made if you are not a Catholic?”

    I don’t recommend using this argument against a Protestant apologist who’s done his homework, because his answer will be “we don’t”. The Bible versions favoured by Protestants omit several of the books that appear in the “Catholic Bibles”, and also omit some passages from other books, because Protestant scholars decided they didn’t trust those books. Google ‘deuterocanonical’ for more info.

    Some Protestants believe that Catholics are servants of Satan who deliberately corrupted the Bible, and that only the King James Version can be trusted*. These people put a lot of importance on the differences between Bible versions and are likely to laugh at the suggestion that they’re “following the book the Catholic Church made” – to them the differences are crucial. Some go as far as to assert that ONLY the King James Version is authentic.

    You might well feel that these differences are superficial compared to all the material they have in common, but you’re unlikely to convince a KJV-Only Protestant of that.

    *IIRC, Jack Chick actually claims that Catholics invented Islam as a way to lure more people away from True Christianity.

  62. Ms. Daisy Cutter says

    Ichiban, #4: You sound like the tiresome sort who denies that anything can be real unless it can be broken down into atoms. Read Sastra’s comment at #45.

    Randomfactor, #25: Similarly, if less hilariously, “I also say ‘Holy mackerel!’ sometimes, but that doesn’t mean I worship a fish.”

    Brother Og, #26: So I guess porn movies are full of people expressing their belief, eh?

    Glen D.: “Atheists have fangs in their buttholes.” And the shuffle of many shuffling feet were heard as countless men got out of the Gay Sex With Brownian line.

    Speaking of the “angry” trope, here’s an incredibly stupid comment I saw on TruthDig in a thread about Hitchens:

    The person who cannot believe, and yet keeps trying is in some way more appealing than the person who succumbs to anger and gives up. Almost nobody can laugh it all off.

    So the person who keeps beating their head against a brick wall is better than the person who embraces reality? Oh, right, embracing reality = “anger.” Because GAWD EXISTS and atheists who deny it are just like toddlers raging against daddy.

  63. Midnight Rambler says

    The other statement that I find bothersome is that atheists believe in nothing. I believe in many things. Most importantly, I believe in reality and all the evidence in support of it.

    A case can be made that “believe in” isn’t quite the right term. You know it’s there.

    Actually, I think “believe” is the right term for this one thing. We do have to have some sort of belief (I’m not sure I’d call it faith) that what we perceive as reality actually is, and we’re not living in a Matrix-like simulation.

  64. krismaglione says

    When Falwell died, Fox News had Hitchens on along side the ‘simpering godbotherers’. That was awesome.

  65. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    David M:

    ichiban didn’t say love “isn’t real”.

    Yes, but comparing love to god (both of which are all in our heads) makes love into a fictional construct like god.

  66. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Okay, I realize that this can be a special case of a number of others above (including but not limited to “mad at god”), but I hear it so often that I have to address it:

    You turned from God because of the Holocaust.

    f* that noise.

    On the one hand, I wasn’t alive. On the other, sure: isn’t the holocaust subject to the same scrutiny as any other event? With so many people praying so hard for salvation, working their butts off – literally – by day and then doing it again by night to try to scrabble together a minyan under the nose of the Nazi guards, am I really to believe that a god that cares about those prayers is evidenced by the fact that only 7+ million people were killed including 6+ million Jews, a whole mess of catholics, and some protestants who were imprisoned and killed specifically because of the relationships that they believed that they had with their God? (yes, as manifested by feeling a religious duty to “speak out” or by descent or other things, but if a => b, then being killed for b means also being killed for a is my point)

    The Holocaust, like every other historical event, can be explained without resort to the supernatural. No, it wasn’t the Holocaust, but yes the Holocaust isn’t magically immune to this analysis because so many Jews (and others, but in the use of this trope, it’s always about Jewish deaths) died.

    …………….

    So, deep breath. That one is just plain hard to even mention without getting extremely emotional. How does one even talk to one’s fellow Jews about this? It’s hard. Damn hard. I have some words to say, but actually saying them in front of other Jews? Much less in a shul or synagogue where these conversations can and do sometimes take place? Not that I think that there’s a religious reason to refrain from saying certain things, but I’m acutely aware that the Jewish tendency to argue about ideas without hurting other people has limits and I have no desire to hurt others in the process of speaking truthfully…and the context, including the place of utterance, of words affects the level of injury that they are able to cause. Like throwing a rock at someone across a street and throwing a rock at someone from the top of a cliff to the bottom.

    ……………..

    I had another, and it will probably come back to me, but talking about this one? Yeah it’s huge and deserves its own place even if it might technically be a subset of others. It gets used a lot by evangelical protestants as well, but I’ve mostly heard it in intra-Jewish conversations.

    When I have a few minutes, I’m sure I’ll remember the other thing and post in separately.

  67. MetzO'Magic says

    I imagine these are the same people who keep Monster Cables and the invisible rust inhibitor factory in business.

    Yeah, that’s a good one, Ing. I’m an electrical engineer, and all my speaker cable has always been, from Day One, good ol’ 16-gauge lamp wire.

    Let me see if I can dig up the thread over at Randi’s place where he tried to take on the audiophile with the $7000 speaker cable… yep, it was one Michael Fremer:

    Pear Cable Chickens Out of $1,000,000 Challenge, We Search For Answers

    I remember that before Fremer actually took on the Randi 1M challenge, he had the foresight to try it first at home with some friends. And sure enough, he couldn’t tell the difference between even Monster Cable and the Pear cables. Then one of his engineer friends subbed in the lamp wire. No discernible difference, of course.

    Sorry, OT, but interesting.

  68. morgiana says

    I see evidence of love every day, and I can show it to you — and I don’t accept the existence of love that doesn’t demonstrate itself.

    I think there is no **evidence** for love anywhere except in your own experience, since love is purely a **subjective** experience. You can’t see it, you can only feel it. Where is this evidence for love?

  69. consciousness razor says

    I think there is no **evidence** for love anywhere except in your own experience, since love is purely a **subjective** experience.

    What is a subjective experience?

    You can’t see it, you can only feel it.

    What you see isn’t a subjective experience?

    How about what you smell? If you fart and people around you start to complain about a smell, is this your defense? That they have no evidence you farted, just subjective experiences?

    Where is this evidence for love?

    Where is the evidence for a subjective experience?

  70. says

    Where is this evidence for love?

    It’s amazing how theists become literal morons who insist on omniscience when it’s convenient.

    I mean fuck you’d have to know everything to know that your mother loves you when she feeds you and hugs you. All powerful god that does jack shit but maybe warm fuzzies? That we know exists!

  71. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Where is this evidence for love?

    Oxytocin…Typical of the ignorant not knowing the obvious. Biochemistry rules the brain…

  72. morgiana says

    What you see isn’t a subjective experience?

    How about what you smell? If you fart and people around you start to complain about a smell, is this your defense? That they have no evidence you farted, just subjective experiences?

    I don’t understand your point…

    But to answer your question: My defense would be, it was him or her. Not me!

  73. morgiana says

    Oxytocin…Typical of the ignorant not knowing the obvious. Biochemistry rules the brain…

    How is Oxytocin evidence for love? Oxytocin can make people behave in certain ways. How do you know it is love?

  74. gijoel says

    The “I’m not religious myself, but I feel the yoinks need religion as a moral compass.”

    Plus the perennial, “Mao, Stalin and Hitler killed more people than all the religious wars put together.”

  75. consciousness razor says

    I don’t understand your point…

    Then answer the other questions, not just the one about how you lie when you fart.

    I think there is no **evidence** for love anywhere except in your own experience, since love is purely a **subjective** experience. You can’t see it, you can only feel it.

    If you could see it, would that mean it is not a subjective experience? If seeing things is not a subjective experience, then what is?

    But to answer your question: My defense would be, it was him or her. Not me!

    Where is your evidence that anyone else ever farts? You just have your subjective experience of a smell.

  76. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    How do you know it is love?

    Science. And why folks like PZ and myself are still married to our first wives…Anybody who says otherwise needs to provide links to the literature showing otherwise…Are you adult enough to look up the real evidence???Or are you nothing but liar and bullshitter???

  77. morgiana says

    Science. And why folks like PZ and myself are still married to our first wives…Anybody who says otherwise needs to provide links to the literature showing otherwise…Are you adult enough to look up the real evidence???Or are you nothing but liar and bullshitter???

    Let me explain my point. Throughout your life so far, every time you’ve had an experience of love, it was just **you** who felt love. Just you. What if your wife had asked you to show your love for her to her in some ‘tangible’ form? I am sure she did. What did you do? Brought a scientific instrument in the room that could record your love? Read her a science book that explained how oxytocin makes us fall in love? Or, just tried to convince her through some gifts, poetry, or something else? In the end, were you able to produce any ‘evidence’ for your love? Of course not. And that’s the whole point.

  78. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    morgiana:
    Are you being tedious on purpose or do you annoy the people close to you this much, too?

  79. David Marjanović says

    “I don’t know, and neither do you” is one that gets on my nerves.

    It’s technically true – it just downplays parsimony a bit too much.

  80. David Marjanović says

    Or, just tried to convince her through some gifts, poetry, or something else? In the end, were you able to produce any ‘evidence’ for your love? Of course not.

    Huh? Since when doesn’t behavior count as evidence?

    Oh, sure, it could all be faked. Tell me why we should assume loving couples are actors who pretend something for months or decades without interruption and for no reason anyone can find.

    I just mentioned parsimony. Look it up.

  81. morgiana says

    Huh? Since when doesn’t behavior count as evidence?

    Oh, sure, it could all be faked. Tell me why we should assume loving couples are actors who pretend something for months or decades without interruption and for no reason anyone can find.

    I just mentioned parsimony. Look it up.

    I agree. So what’s the problem when people behave as if they have been touched by God? There are many of them.

  82. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Brought a scientific instrument in the room that could record your love? Read her a science book that explained how oxytocin makes us fall in love? Or, just tried to convince her through some gifts, poetry, or something else? In the end, were you able to produce any ‘evidence’ for your love? Of course not. And that’s the whole point.

    Funny how through that bullshit, not one citation to the peer reviewed scientific literature, just bullshit skepticism, typical of godbots and other woooists. Why should I believe anything you say if you can’t support it with third party evidence??? That’s what separates the men from the boys, and the realists from the bullshit artists…

  83. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Gah! Tedious!

    So what’s the problem when people behave as if they have been touched by God?

    For fuck’s sake. If someone where to ask me how I know my husband loves me, I could tell you about all of the caring things he does for me.

    People that are “touched by god” have no evidence for this. God didn’t whisper sweet nothings in their ear or rub their feet when they had a bad day.

    So, are you always this tedious?

  84. 'Tis Himself, OM. says

    My wife has put up with me for over 30 years. If that’s not love then what is it? And no, she’s not masochistic.

  85. consciousness razor says

    So what’s the problem when people behave as if they have been touched by God? There are many of them.

    Part of the problem is that they usually act like complete jackasses in those cases. But the problem is also that gods don’t exist. So whatever was touching them, if anything, was not a god.

  86. says

    Evidence your mom loves you: she feeds you.

    Evidence your god loves you: some guy in a funny robe sez he feeds you. Rilly. When, oddly enough, it still looks to you an awful lot like it’s still yer mom.

    (/Persons finding this argument too labyrinthine for their limited faculties may meditate, Zen fashion, upon only the last two words of the forgoing, in search of the enlightenment they are no doubt due. Thank you and good night.)

  87. says

    … So whatever was touching them, if anything, was not a god.

    … indeed. And as a consequence, in such cases, responsible professionals have begun to find it prudent to ask such questions as: ‘And just where did he touch you?’

    (/… and thereafter, depending somewhat on the answer to this initial inquiry, to determine whether the local priest has an adequate alibi.)

  88. says

    If you hypothesize that your wife loves you, and this hypothesis is true, this allows you to make predictions regarding her behavior, i.e. she will remain married to you, act like she cares when you feel like shit, have sex on occasion, not hit you in the head with a frying pan, etc. If you observe all these conditions consistently, you probably have a workable theory of love.
    If I hypothesize that someone has been touched by God, that gives me no clue as to what they might do. Maybe they offer to wash my feet, maybe they offer to kill me and everyone who looks like me.
    No predictive value, not falsifiable, not science.
    Killed By Fish

  89. says

    So what’s the problem when people behave as if they have been touched by God? There are many of them.

    Yeah, just like there are many gods. Whatever those people have been touched by, it’s not Odin or Aphrodite or Osiris or Jehovah. Not even Jesus.

    I know my husband loves me, after all, he’s stayed by my side for over 30 years. My husband, my friends, they are all capable of demonstrating their love, care and concern. Gods? Nope.

  90. articulett says

    Hyoid@73

    Articulett@30
    That’s heresy! Our blessed mother planet turns away from the sun!

    Yikes! You’re right. This morning, I could have sworn the blessed mother planet was turning towards the sun, but now that it’s evening, I can see you are clearly right.

  91. morgiana says

    For fuck’s sake. If someone where to ask me how I know my husband loves me, I could tell you about all of the caring things he does for me.

    People that are “touched by god” have no evidence for this. God didn’t whisper sweet nothings in their ear or rub their feet when they had a bad day.

    So, are you always this tedious?

    Caring doesn’t mean your husband loves you. You are just **assuming** that your husband’s caring for you must be due to his love for you. His caring could be due to a lot of other things… You are the one who needs evidence for God. Why don’t you need evidence for your husband’s love?

  92. TonyJ says

    “I don’t know, and neither do you” is one that gets on my nerves.

    It’s technically true – it just downplays parsimony a bit too much.

    Technically, yes, but when they say it, it’s always as if it’s 50/50 between their particular flavor of theism and atheism.

  93. morgiana says

    Part of the problem is that they usually act like complete jackasses in those cases. But the problem is also that gods don’t exist. So whatever was touching them, if anything, was not a god.

    OK. So how do you know love exists if you believe love exists? Do you believe love exists?

  94. says

    I filled out a questionnaire yesterday, and people were asked for their religion. The possible answers were buddhist, hindu, christian other, catholic, spiritual/new age, agnostic, jewish, atheist, non-religious.

    *boggle*

  95. says

    Caring doesn’t mean your husband loves you. You are just **assuming** that your husband’s caring for you must be due to his love for you. His caring could be due to a lot of other things… You are the one who needs evidence for God. Why don’t you need evidence for your husband’s love?

    This is stupid. This is why i linked to the definition. It is definitionally true. by definition the displayed behavior is love

  96. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Why don’t you need evidence for your husband’s love?

    Jesus Christ. I have evidence of my husband’s love, that’s what I’ve been saying. At this point, you’re just splitting hairs over semantics to try to prove your asinine point– it really doesn’t matter is my husband “cares” for me or if he “loves” me, because it’s the same fucking thing.

    I will not bore everyone here with the details of my relationship, but suffice it to say, I have every reason to trust that he’s telling the truth when he tells me that he loves me. He demonstrates to me how he feels.

    Any pitiful god can’t do that for you.

  97. kemist says

    OK. So how do you know love exists if you believe love exists? Do you believe love exists?

    This question makes very little sense. “Love” is an emotion, a name we humans give to a behavior of our brains.

    Do you believe anger exists ? Fear ? Envy ? Lust ? Joy ?

    Emotions are emergent properties of brains. They don’t exist outside of brains. Love is no different from those other above; that which has no brain can neither love nor hate. They’re part of human experience. To separate them from where they come from is like separating music from sound.

    Of course music exists – but not as an object separate from sound. Similarly, love and all other emotions cannot be dissociated from brains. Neither do minds exist outside of brains, which is why the concept of soul makes no sense.

    That’s the problem with dualists – asking senseless questions because of a faulty premise.

  98. says

    Do you believe love exists?

    The British PM David Cameron recently claimed love as property of Christianity, which I’m sure made some Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist and nonbelieving Brits wonder why they voted for the guy.
    But it’s what religions do, they claim generic human values and emotions as their invention, and declare that they can not happen without practicing their particular brand of faith.

  99. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    You are the one who needs evidence for God. Why don’t you need evidence for your husband’s love?

    Fuckwit, please provide conclusive physical evidence for your imaginary deity. Evidence that will pass muster with scientists, magicians, and professional debunkers, as being of divine, and not natural (scientifically explained), origins. Or shut the fuck up.

    You don’t think 30+ years of marriage requires love? Cite the peer reviewed scientific literature to show otherwise (link to Google Scholar), or shut the fuck up as a liar and bullshitter, as we both know you are. You have no evidence, just obtuse skepticism….Loser.

  100. says

    Why don’t you need evidence for your husband’s love?

    Do you take pride in being a willful idiot?

    So how do you know love exists

    Ever heard of neuroscience? Might want to check it out.

    You might want to stop your idiotic game of ‘gotcha’ now, because, well, it’s idiotic and it’s not a gotcha. Evidence of a person’s love for you is all over the place, expressed in a myriad of ways every day.

    Evidence for gods? Nope. Evidence of agape? Nope.

  101. says

    “You can’t prove god doesn’t exist.”

    1) Provide me a definition of any god, and I can prove that god does not exist.(Of course, no definition is ever provided that doesn’t change when challenged.)

    2) The stories in the bible are so obviously fabrications, please explain to me why I should take any of it seriously enough to bother with a refutation in the first place?

    3) The entity that created such an enormous universe requires human worship? An entity *this* powerful needs me to “believe” in it and to bow my knee and kiss it’s ass?

    The very idea of such a god is so preposterous that it’s beneath consideration as something that could exist.

  102. ibyea says

    Guys, it’s not worth it. Morgiana is being stupidly obtuse. Nothing could penetrate that thick skull of his. Or maybe he/she is such a loser that no one loves him/her, so he/she doesn’t know what love is like. That is the only reason I can think of why this person is asking dumb questions like that.

  103. 'Tis Himself, OM. says

    Cupcake morgiana,

    A couple of friendly words of advice. Don’t tell us you were just asking questions. And whatever you do, don’t complain about people being rude to you. You will not like the results.

  104. consciousness razor says

    OK. So how do you know love exists if you believe love exists? Do you believe love exists?

    I believe other people exist and that they are like me in having feelings, like love for example. I know this because their behavior resembles mine when I have such feelings. Knowledge in this sense is not absolute certainty, but empirical evidence, and it’s a good enough standard to justify saying other things are not known.

    If you’re convinced by your line of argument, you may as well be a solipsist rather than a theist or an atheist. You could assert that you and your subjective experiences are the only things you can know with any certainty. This whole “God” thing wouldn’t be external to you, just another one of your subjective experiences, like love or other people or farts or anything else. You could call yourself “God,” but no one else would be listening — I guess that’s really up to you. So, either you can double-down with this solipsistic lunacy, or you can accept that it’s possible for others to objectively know what your “feelings” are.

  105. morgiana says

    Jesus Christ. I have evidence of my husband’s love, that’s what I’ve been saying. At this point, you’re just splitting hairs over semantics to try to prove your asinine point– it really doesn’t matter is my husband “cares” for me or if he “loves” me, because it’s the same fucking thing.

    And what exactly is that evidence? That you husband cares for you? No, it is not an evidence. Maybe evidence to you, but not a tangible evidence that is evidence for other people as well. This is because some husbands care for their wives precisely because they love someone else.

    I will not bore everyone here with the details of my relationship, but suffice it to say, I have every reason to trust that he’s telling the truth when he tells me that he loves me. He demonstrates to me how he feels.

    Any pitiful god can’t do that for you.

    Do you realize what you are doing here? You are acting exactly like a person who says he’s been touched by God. He is saying, I have got the evidence. I have felt the touch of God, and this is my evidence… Really?

  106. kemist says

    Do you realize what you are doing here? You are acting exactly like a person who says he’s been touched by God. He is saying, I have got the evidence. I have felt the touch of God, and this is my evidence… Really?

    If someone tells you, very sincerely, that he / she’s seen a 25 feet high blue cockroach called Steve, will you start worshipping Steve ?

    Would you consider this evidence for the existence of such a thing ?

  107. hotshoe says

    For fuck’s sake. If someone where to ask me how I know my husband loves me, I could tell you about all of the caring things he does for me.

    People that are “touched by god” have no evidence for this. God didn’t whisper sweet nothings in their ear or rub their feet when they had a bad day.

    So, are you always this tedious?

    Caring doesn’t mean your husband loves you. You are just **assuming** that your husband’s caring for you must be due to his love for you. His caring could be due to a lot of other things… You are the one who needs evidence for God. Why don’t you need evidence for your husband’s love?

    Yes, of course, you mindless idiot. Just like your meat husk could have been infected by a parasite that now causes you to type those words, which we just ***assume*** must be due to your human thought — I could have been infected by a parasite that causes me to rub his feet when he gets off work. Love would have nothing to do with it, and if as a result of my “caring” behavior, he ***assumes*** that I love him, well then more fool him. He should know better than to take the evidence of his own senses that my behavior is a reliable sign of love. He should know to look for the hidden possible parasites. Or the “lot of other things” which you mindlessly and idiotically claim could be the cause of caring behavior.

    More fool us, morgiana, that we ***assume*** you are actually human. Like you ask, why don’t we need evidence for your human-ness? Got any evidence?

    No? Then why should I take a single word you say seriously? You’ve just refuted your own claim to mindful existence. But if you reply at all – with even one word – you’re tacitly admitting that you expect us NOT to need evidence that you’re real. That is, we should accept the most plausible and ordinary explanation of your words appearing here: that they were typed by an ordinary human like ourselves.

    Love is a plausible and ordinary explanation of human behavior appearing to us in the form of sympathetic words and caring gestures.

    There are NO evidences of god appearing to humans which can be verified by human senses Sure, the traffic lights all were green on the way to work and that’s a sign of god’s favor! Oh, yeah, that could definitely be due to a lot of other things than god — but we’ll just jump to the least ordinary and least plausible explanation of green lights and claim it’s due to god. Sure we will !

    IF you can’t admit the difference between the behavioral appearances of love and the non-appearances of god, then I will justifiably assume that your parasites are indeed your master. Too bad, sucks to be you.

  108. says

    Audley, did you leave your Cupcake magnet on again today? It’s attracting a willful idiot with delusions of intelligence.

    morgiana:

    You are acting exactly like a person who says he’s been touched by God.

    No, you fuckwitted Cupcake. Unlike a god, Audley’s husband exists. That would be key, that whole existing business.

  109. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    I’m with consciousness razor here– morgiana is a solipsist douche. We get it, really we do, M. Most of us have taken Philosophy 101, too!

    And what exactly is that evidence? That you husband cares for you? No, it is not an evidence.

    Is it just me or does this make absolutely no fucking sense?

    Maybe evidence to you, but not a tangible evidence that is evidence for other people as well.

    Guys! Listen up! If you see my husband and me out in public and he gives me a smooch, it is totally not evidence that he loves me! No sir! ‘Cos, you know, kisses aren’t tangible.

    Or something.

    This is because some husbands care for their wives precisely because they love someone else.

    LOL, wut?

    I can’t decide if your argument boils down to tedious solipsism or if you’ve just got no fucking clue how intimate relationships work.

    You are acting exactly like a person who says he’s been touched by God.

    Sure, except that other people can see how my husband treats me. Other people have overheard him telling me that he loves me. It’s not all in my head, unlike the delusion of religion.

  110. says

    Look is there any proof that cheeseburgers exist?

    Yes I mean we define them as meat, bread, cheese, and commandment sandwiches that are desired by kitties but whose is to say that any given beef, bread, cheese, and commandment sandwich desired by a kitty is a cheesebuger?

  111. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Also: “Love” is not some separate entity that floats out there in the ether. If you don’t “believe” in love, then you can’t rightfully “believe” in happiness, sadness, anger, friendship, jealousy, etc etc.

  112. morgiana says

    I believe other people exist and that they are like me in having feelings, like love for example. I know this because their behavior resembles mine when I have such feelings. Knowledge in this sense is not absolute certainty, but empirical evidence, and it’s a good enough standard to justify saying other things are not known.

    Have you ever heard about those people who are completely or partially out of touch with their feelings and emotions? A lot of professionals believe Hitler was one such person, who was unable to feel love and other emotions, and this unable to identify them in other people. This is why he killed millions of them, and who knows … enjoyed very much killing them.

    The point is, if you feel some emotions, it is just you who is feeling it. It is your own and personal experience. Stop feeling your emotions, and other people will become emotionless for you too.

  113. morgiana says

    No, you fuckwitted Cupcake. Unlike a god, Audley’s husband exists. That would be key, that whole existing business.

    Sure he does. But what about his love? Does his love exists too? Give evidence that it does.

  114. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Caine:

    Audley, did you leave your Cupcake magnet on again today?

    I must have. It’s a lot like my cellphone– I turn it on, then I lose the damn thing.

    hotshoe:

    Love is a plausible and ordinary explanation of human behavior appearing to us in the form of sympathetic words and caring gestures.

    Perfect.

    I ♥ this ‘cos it takes the goddamned mysteriousness out of “love”.

    Okay, so the moral of M’s story is that you can’t trust other people? Is that it?

  115. janine says

    Sure he does. But what about his love? Does his love exists too? Give evidence that it does.

    Do I need to provide evidence of my distaste for you?

  116. kemist says

    Look is there any proof that cheeseburgers exist?

    I just had a scary thought. Even if the designated beef, orangey cheese, bread and condiments is assembled in the order that define a cheeseburger…

    How do we know it’s really a cheeseburger ?

    I mean it could be just a meat-and-cheese sandwich, without any cheeseburgeriness.

  117. 'Tis Himself, OM. says

    The way my wife acts towards me is evidence that she loves me. Other people have seen some of these actions and commented on her love for me. Love is a social endeavor with socially recognized aspects.

  118. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    M:

    Give evidence that it does.

    That’d be pretty tough since Caine’s never met my husband. But do tell, what would you accept as evidence that my husband loves me?

    Are you just saying that people can’t be trusted? ‘Cos that’s what I’m getting out of this.

    And it’s rather stupid. And pointless.

  119. hotshoe says

    I will not bore everyone here with the details of my relationship, but suffice it to say, I have every reason to trust that he’s telling the truth when he tells me that he loves me. He demonstrates to me how he feels.

    Any pitiful god can’t do that for you.

    Do you realize what you are doing here? You are acting exactly like a person who says he’s been touched by God. He is saying, I have got the evidence. I have felt the touch of God, and this is my evidence… Really?

    Sucks to be you, morgiana.

    Too bad you’re either an asshole, an idiot, a victim of mind-eating parasites, or some combination of the three.

    Since you cannot tell the difference between caring (physical) touches between humans which are visible to more than one person including neutral bystanders – and for which the most ordinary plausible explanation is actually love — versus (supernatural) “touch” of god which is NOT visible to any human and certainly not to impartial observers – and for which the most ordinary and plausible explanation is self-delusion or brainwashing — then you can never experience love for yourself.

    What a shame. You’ll never know what it feels like to love or to be loved. You’ll never be able to feel that it’s not “due to a lot of other things”. You’ll never even be able to have the faither’s consolation of believing you’ve been touched by god. Because you’ll never be able to have certainty that it’s due to god when it so easily could be “due to a lot of other things”.

    Sorry it sucks so bad to be you. Really.

  120. morgiana says

    The way my wife acts towards me is evidence that she loves me. Other people have seen some of these actions and commented on her love for me. Love is a social endeavor with socially recognized aspects.

    Oh. too bad you weren’t around when Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet. He could very well have re-named it to: “Tis Himself, OM and His Beloved Wife: The Greatest Love Story Ever Told.

  121. hotshoe says

    The point is, if you feel some emotions, it is just you who is feeling it. It is your own and personal experience. Stop feeling your emotions, and other people will become emotionless for you too.

    Oh, you poor sad little thing. I’m pretty sure there’s medication which will help you with your emotional problems. Really, get help – it’s not a good life to go through trying to make other people emotionless just so you can survive your own pain. If you’ve already seen a therapist and didn’t get better, you need to try a different one.

  122. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Shorter morgiana: I got nothin’.

    What the fuck are you actually asking for? If you won’t trust what I (or ‘Tis or whoever) have said about my significant other’s actions and words, what else is there?

    Oh, wait. You get your nice little “gotcha!” ‘cos you’re using a definition of “love” that you refuse to share with the rest of us. How exceptionally childish.

  123. kemist says

    Sure he does. But what about his love? Does his love exists too? Give evidence that it does.

    Sure it exists. In their brains. Which does not mean it’s not real, but does not mean you you can stub your big toe on it.

    Are you really this dense ?

    Emotions are the product of brains. They exist only within minds and are expressed as a behavior. By freaking definition. I’m assuming you’re thinking you god exists outside of your mind, yes ?

    Then you want us to accept a feeling as evidence of something, in contrast with love (which is itself a feeling), that exists outside your mind. Like gravity or matter.

    It does not work that way. Else you have to accept every hallucination, weird feeling, delusion, drug trip anyone might present as evidence. You have to accept that there is such a thing as Steve because a person somewhere has met him personally, and he’s been touched by Steve.

  124. consciousness razor says

    I mean it could be just a meat-and-cheese sandwich, without any cheeseburgeriness.

    Cheeseburger p-zombies! I knew it; they do exist!

    Be afraid. Be very afraid.

  125. morgiana says

    Shorter morgiana: I got nothin’.

    What the fuck are you actually asking for? If you won’t trust what I (or ‘Tis or whoever) have said about my significant other’s actions and words, what else is there?

    Oh, wait. You get your nice little “gotcha!” ‘cos you’re using a definition of “love” that you refuse to share with the rest of us. How exceptionally childish.

    No, Doc. It’s not a matter of what you are saying about your significant other. It’s a matter of providing evidence to support your claims. Your evidence to prove that your husband loves you is your husband cares for you.

    So, you are saying:

    A husband cares for his wife == because he loves his wife

    And I am saying:

    A husband cares for his wife == BECAUSE he is cheating on his wife and he doesn’t want his wife to find this out. So he is making her believe that he loves her by caring about her.

    Of course, both could be true in a relationship. But how do we know which one is true?

    The point again is, there can be no evidence for love. One can only have personal feelings that someone loves him or her. But are feelings enough and acceptable evidence? A lot of people feel God too…? Why don’t you believe them? And if you don’t believe them because of their feelings, why should I believe you and your feelings when I can’t see any evidence for your husband’s love?

  126. ericpaulsen says

    I doubt this counts as a trope but I have always had a problem, especially this time of year, with the whole “Jesus is the reason for the season” line. Actually the Earths elliptical orbit and the tilt of its axis is the reason for the season or have I misinterpreted the information I got from my high school science classes?

  127. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    But are feelings enough and acceptable evidence? A lot of people feel God too…?

    Physical proof is not proof, gotcha.

    So, yes. Your argument does boil down to:
    1) We can’t trust anyone but ourselves
    and
    2) You have no fucking idea how long term, intimate relationships work.

    You must lead a sad, lonely life, M. I kind of* pity you.

    *Only kind of ‘cos you’re really fucking annoying. I sure as shit wouldn’t want to spend any time with you and I wouldn’t be surprised if no one else did, either.

  128. 'Tis Himself, OM. says

    morgiana #141

    Oh. too bad you weren’t around when Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet. He could very well have re-named it to: “Tis Himself, OM and His Beloved Wife: The Greatest Love Story Ever Told.

    Actually, cupcake, you’ve just shot yourself in the foot. Romeo and Juliet is recognized as a love story because of how the two protagonists act and speak to and about each other. A four hundred year year old play is still recognizable as a love story because of the characters’ actions and speeches.

    The major difference between Romeo & Juliet and my wife & me is the relationships between the Capulets and Montagues and between my family and my in-laws. My parents and my in-laws got along extremely well.

  129. says

    Fuckwitted Cupcake:

    Give evidence that it does.

    I already have. Once again, Dear Fuckwit, neuroscience. Try to use that brain of yours.

    He could very well have re-named it to: “Tis Himself, OM and His Beloved Wife: The Greatest Love Story Ever Told.

    My, you are pathetic. Tsk. So, you’re attempting to make the point that death is the only indicator of great love, therefor god. Yawn. Lots of gods supposedly died, Cupcake. That’s hardly a big deal when you don’t exist in the first place.

    Loving a person enough to share their life 30+ years and on until death is, indeed, a great love story. Like ‘Tis, like Audley and like a lot of other people, I’m living one of those myself.

  130. morgiana says

    *Only kind of ‘cos you’re really fucking annoying. I sure as shit wouldn’t want to spend any time with you and I wouldn’t be surprised if no one else did, either.

    OK. Great. But do ponder on what I said. As they famously say ‘God-did-it’ to mock believers in atheist circles, you are saying ‘love-did’it’. But who are you mocking?

  131. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    ‘Tis:

    The major difference between Romeo & Juliet and my wife & me is the relationships between the Capulets and Montagues and between my family and my in-laws. My parents and my in-laws got along extremely well.

    And, you know, you didn’t kill yourselves in a fit of confusion.

  132. says

    Morgiana, you’re being a dumb turd. Knock it off.

    Of course we have evidence of love. My wife has stayed married to me for 31 years and had 3 kids with me, and it’s not as if I’m rich or provide some other ulterior motive for her to stick with me. I think that degree of commitment, which is also reciprocated, is pretty good evidence.

    This imaginary god of yours has made no similar investment in me.

    Yet here you are going around and around trying to invent excuses to deny the testimony of our experience without raising even greater questions about your deity, which provides no evidence for its existence at all. I do not deny that many people feel love for their god, and I think that love is real: but it’s not returned. You want to invent hypotheticals about a husband pretending to love while cheating on a relationship; you ought to apply that reasoning to god.

    But this is your last chance. If I get up in the morning and discover that you’re still parroting denials mindlessly, I’ll boot your dumb ass before you waste more of everyone’s time.

  133. says

    Audley:

    I sure as shit wouldn’t want to spend any time with you and I wouldn’t be surprised if no one else did, either.

    No surprise for you, then! I have the distinct feeling that our little fuckwit of a Cupcake would bore me silly. Well, actually, I know it would. Amazing how that works, it must be like magnets.

  134. morgiana says

    But this is your last chance. If I get up in the morning and discover that you’re still parroting denials mindlessly, I’ll boot your dumb ass before you waste more of everyone’s time.

    Do it now Fatty. Your usual lame excuse. Like I give a flying fuck about you and your blog.

  135. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    PZ:

    But this is your last chance. If I get up in the morning and discover that you’re still parroting denials mindlessly, I’ll boot your dumb ass before you waste more of everyone’s time.

    Here, M, I’m going to demonstrate my love. Watch closely:

    PZ, I seriously love you, man. You always know what to say.

  136. says

    Fuckwit Cupcake:

    As they famously say ‘God-did-it’ to mock believers in atheist circles, you are saying ‘love-did’it’.

    No, idiot. Goddists run about saying Goddidit as an answer to everything, even when there’s perfectly good evidence as to how something happened.

    “Love did it” is stupid – your brand of stupid. Love is an emotion most of us experience. It’s our brains, ya know. Neuroscience again.

  137. consciousness razor says

    The point again is, there can be no evidence for love. One can only have personal feelings that someone loves him or her.

    This is just an assertion. Where is your evidence for it? We can have objective, verifiable evidence of what other people feel. Yes, people can believe false things about others’ feelings based on incomplete evidence, but they can do so on the basis of evidence nonetheless. It isn’t just your own “subjective” feelings all the way down unless you’re a solipsist.

    If you are a solipsist, then there’s no way I could possibly help you, because you wouldn’t think I exist, or that a God exists who touches you in your private places. It would just be you touching yourself, which is one reason why what you’re doing right now is appropriately called “mental masturbation.”

  138. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    Do it now Fatty. Your usual lame excuse. Like I give a flying fuck about you and your blog.

    Awe, look! Someone is in their death throes!

    Here’s some food for thought (since you want to compare me (ha!) to a goddist): Refusing to accept the evidence makes you no better than the young-earth creationists.

    I can play your games, too!

  139. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    He is saying, I have got the evidence. I have felt the touch of God, and this is my evidence… Really?

    Nope, cite the peer reviewed scientific literature or shut the fuck up. I presented a couple of links for oxytocin, and you can’t even supply one to support your fuckwittery? What a loser…

  140. says

    Do it now Fatty.

    Oh, the lack of wit! You’ve been dungeoned before, haven’t you?

    Your usual lame excuse.

    Which would be? It’s not his fault you’re an idiot.

    Like I give a flying fuck about you and your blog.

    Ooooh, please show us how much you don’t care and fuck off! You could really show us and stick the flounce!

  141. hotshoe says

    What the fuck are you actually asking for? If you won’t trust what I (or ‘Tis or whoever) have said about my significant other’s actions and words, what else is there?

    Oh, wait. You get your nice little “gotcha!”

    Yep, just like PZ mentioned in his opening post:

    Another one that infuriates me is the smug theist who wants to prove that I actually have faith in something, and the one thing they always choose is “love”. It’s invisible, isn’t it, just like god, so if you can believe in love, you must believe in god. Nope, sorry: I see evidence of love every day, and I can show it to you — and I don’t accept the existence of love that doesn’t demonstrate itself.

    Kinda sad that morgiana was compelled to show up and provide a living* example. “Love” is invisible just like “god”. To her distorted mind, the (physical) touches of “love” are indistinguishable from the (supernatural) touch of “god”. The recipient of the caring touch of a loved one is exactly as justified in assuming it’s really “love” as the recipient of the immaterial touch of an invisible, inaudible, taste-free, smell-free, neither-hot-nor-cold being is in assuming it’s really “god”.

    Because there’s like, you know, no way for neutral observers to tell the difference … no way that physical evidence of caring behavior (admittedly not 100% conclusive) could ever support the explanation that it’s love in action … no way that the absence of physical evidence of god’s behavior (admittedly, absence of evidence is never totally conclusive) could suggest the likelihood that god did not actually touch the believer and that some other explanation is more plausible … no, of course, there’s absolutely no way to tell these two scenarios apart because “love” is just exactly like “god” – requiring faith to experience at all.

    Gotcha, atheists!! You have faith in love!!! So you should equally have faith in god !!!!

    (If honest, morgiana would probably use more exclamation points than that, but I’m restraining myself to honor Terry Pratchett)

    * That is, we assume morgiana is living. Even though we have no direct evidence, it’s the more ordinary and plausible explanation for the evidence of her replies appearing here.

  142. janine says

    Do it now Fatty. Your usual lame excuse. Like I give a flying fuck about you and your blog.

    Are you seven years old?

    Shit, you care enough to stick around and act like a braying ass.

  143. morgiana says

    Then why are you ranting so furiously here?

    Oh I am sorry. Was I ranting furiously? Or was it you and your friends? Why do you have this blog if you can’t take arguments from the other side?

  144. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    hotshoe:

    That is, we assume morgiana is living.

    My money’s on robot.

    Not a cool robot like Bender, more like a cold, unfeeling android like Data*.

    *No, this is not an opening to lecture me about ST:TNG.

  145. morgiana says

    But ban me or not, I am going. Sorry I called you Fatty. In real, I really like you and your blog. But the thing is, you people are very defensive and one-sided. All of you. When you don’t have answers, you come up with excuses and ban people. What a way to win arguments…

  146. kemist says

    The point is, if you feel some emotions, it is just you who is feeling it. It is your own and personal experience. Stop feeling your emotions, and other people will become emotionless for you too.

    lol wut ?

    What a weird statement.

    If you’re a sociopath, you assume other people don’t have emotions ?

    WTF.

    How can you know how a sociopath thinks ? He/she might well be aware of your emotions and think of you as weak and easy to manipulate because of them. They’re quite apparent because they’re associated with certain behaviors. He/she might even know how to fake them if he is a bit smart.

    The point is, a sociopath will generally do things that are to his/her advantage. Fake when it is needed, stop faking when it does not matter anymore.

    Faking all the time makes no sense from that perspective. A sociopath who would do that would never show that he/she does not feel certain emotion would be undistinguishable from a normal person, and in this case it wouldn’t matter.

    Some people have a hard time reading social clues or facial expressions, or have a hard time expressing them. Some have more psychopathic traits than others. Doesn’t mean they cannot be somebody else’s loving life partner. Emotions are subjective, different for everybody, and nothing keeps them from being mixed bags.

    What is a problem though, is the level of paranoia and solipsism it takes never to assume that another human feels the same feelings you do when they express them via the appropriate behaviors. Or to think that you could know the difference between “real” and “fake” love because of your own feelings.

  147. janine says

    Oh I am sorry. Was I ranting furiously? Or was it you and your friends? Why do you have this blog if you can’t take arguments from the other side?

    The problem is not arguments from the other side. The problem is stupid arguments pulled from your ass.

    Since you now have a stupid argument shaped hole in your ass, I suggest that you fill that hole with a decaying porcupine.

  148. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    When you don’t have answers, you come up with excuses and ban people. What a way to win arguments…

    And where is your third party evidence loser???Any winner must have third party evidence to back up their idiocy, and you have presented nothing like the typical uberskeptical losers. Show us something to back your idiocy, or shut the fuck up….

  149. says

    Janine:

    Since you now have a stupid argument shaped hole in your ass, I suggest that you fill that hole with a decaying porcupine.

    Oh Snap! Have I told you I love you lately? I love you, Janine.

  150. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    When you don’t have answers, you come up with excuses and ban people.

    Idiot. None of us has the power to ban you except PZ. And he’s not in on this argument.

    Here’s the thing: There is plenty of evidence and explanations of love in this very thread (including the OP), but you refuse to accept any of it. Why is that?

    I’d really like you to let us know if you’re either a solipsistic asshole or just a distrusting douche.

    Or if you don’t understand that love is an emotion that is as easily demonstrable as happiness. Do you ever say to yourself, “Gee, that woman is smiling. But I can’t know what she’s feeling ‘cos she could be lying.”? If not, why hold love to a higher standard than happiness?

    *Otherwise, why would you throw out that my husband might be cheating on me?

  151. crowepps says

    So what’s the problem when people behave as if they have been touched by God?

    Little children are tormented.
    Total strangers are shamed.
    Innocent bystanders are screamed at.
    People they assume to be ‘God’s enemy’ are killed.
    Horrific wars get started.

    Or were you assuming behavior “as if they have been touched by God” would be positive? There isn’t any evidence for that.

  152. says

    I think there is no **evidence** for love anywhere except in your own experience, since love is purely a **subjective** experience. You can’t see it, you can only feel it. Where is this evidence for love?

    That’s as true of evidence of a bug, of the color green, or of the taste of “sweetness.” IOW, it’s a solipsistic argument, and you’re welcome to believe that you’re the only conscious being in existence, or whatever, but solipsism has little appeal to most of us (and it makes little sense to argue with us if we’re just parts of your experience anyhow).

    None of us knows absolutely that anyone’s experience of “love,” “greenness,” or anything else is experienced similarly by other beings. So fucking what? The world makes a good deal more sense to us if it does work that way.

    And if you’re not willing to admit that all you really have is a tired old solipsistic claim, then you’re too stupid to deal with further.

    For what it’s worth, love really is a problematic claim, and people often can’t be sure of it for some months, or years. Not because we don’t know how love is manifested, but because humans are fairly good at faking it for a while. Yet it’s not really more of a problem for knowing that love exists–why would it be faked if it didn’t exist in reality?–than that the other person tastes “sweetness” or sees “green” (or not, if “color-blind”).

    Glen Davidson

  153. hotshoe says

    Do it now Fatty. Your usual lame excuse. Like I give a flying fuck about you and your blog.

    Awe, look! Someone is in their death throes!

    Here’s some food for thought (since you want to compare me (ha!) to a goddist): Refusing to accept the evidence makes you no better than the young-earth creationists.

    No believer is really any better than a YECtard, because at the heart of both is the problem of living by faith instead of reason and knowledge.

    You’re spot on in pointing out that morgiana is exactly the same with her refusal to accept evidence. Just like the YECtard, seeing the physical evidence of insect tracks in the ancient sediments, simply rears back and refuses to accept it (“it’s a science trick”) our sad little morgiana, seeing the physical evidence of caring behavior, simply starts back and refuses to accept it (he’s acting nice to cover up his cheating).

    Because she knows at some level that she has a problem with her own unjustified beliefs, she projects onto us that we are the ones living by unjustified faith. To recognize otherwise, to admit to herself that there are people like us who can live rationally and still experience love, would destroy her. She would have to admit what a waste she’s made of her life up till now.

    But morgiana, there’s still time for you to fix yourself. Get help from a professional, if you need. You don’t have to live your life in the belief that either love is a trick or god is real.

  154. Active Margin says

    When you don’t have answers, you come up with excuses and ban people. What a way to win arguments…

    But we’ve presented answers. That’s the thing that you seem to be missing. The answers have been rather reasonable, but you appear to simply dismiss them out of hand and repeat your argument ad nauseam.

    Others have mentioned examples of love through their spouses. I second those, but what about young children? I can think of countless examples that demonstrate unconditional love on my son’s part. And I can’t imagine how he’d pull of faking it at five years old.

    Speaking of ad nauseam, I’ve managed to mention my son in a few different threads today.

  155. says

    Active Margin:

    Speaking of ad nauseam, I’ve managed to mention my son in a few different threads today.

    Parents tend to that. Something about loving their sproglets. Or so I hear. ;)

  156. janine says

    Parents tend to that. Something about loving their sproglets. Or so I hear. ;)

    *glares through the intertoobz*

  157. Koshka says

    Active Margin,
    Yes but what **evidence** is there that your son loves you? Have you considered he hugs you and kisses you because he is actually cheating on you with some other parent?

    Therefore God!!!!!!1!!!!!

    Making idiotic arguments is easy.

  158. Wishful Thinking Rules All says

    Bah, going over these atheist tropes enrages me just a tad. Many of them shouldn’t be made by people with more than two brain cells, but people just repeat shit they’ve heard without even thinking about it.

  159. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    I’m surprised that no one has called (explicitly) our necrohystricinophile morgiana on the fact that ze keeps saying there is no **evidence** when ze clearly accepts that there is evidence…but merely argues that such evidence isn’t **proof**.

    There’s a difference between evidence and proof, dear.

    2nd thing to address?

    Is there a difference between evidence for Cupid and evidence for love? If so, what is the difference?

    That’s the difference with which we are concerned.

    If you can’t understand the argument we are making, you really don’t belong in this discussion. Arguing presupposes the existence of effective communication, and honey, you ain’t got it.

  160. articulett says

    At least when I love people or I think they love me– they are real people– you know physical beings –living things. They aren’t myths or imaginary people or dead saviors. They have brains with which they can experience love and bodies with which they can express affection.

    Loving god or feeling god’s love for you appears to be an echo chamber in the mind where you elevate your own feelings to the feelings “god” has for you.
    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2009/11/30/creating-god-in-ones-own-image/

    So I’m willing to concede that god is like love in that it appears to be a “feeling” or “interpretation” inside a material brain– but I’m pretty sure that theists think their gods are more than that.

  161. Wishful Thinking Rules All says

    Oy, the stupid “you can’t prove love” gamble. Nice rebuttal:

    I’m willing to concede that god is like love in that it appears to be a “feeling” or “interpretation” inside a material brain– but I’m pretty sure that theists think their gods are more than that.

    Indeed. The love tactic completely and utterly sucks ass if the goal is to argue for a magical sentient being which exists outside of our minds.

  162. JohnnieCanuck says

    It would be rude to speculate that morgiana has soured on the concept of love because someone she trusted and felt affection for, turned out to have lied to her and cheated on her, wouldn’t it?

    One could then say that the reason she hates love and claims love is non-existent is because of the hurt she experienced. It would be like that popular theist trope we all love to hate.

  163. pj says

    The pathetic morgiana demonstrates once again how spot-on Sastra was when ze identified theists as the true materialists and concrete thinkers. I don’t know how to link into a specific post (me is so fick…) so I use copypasta:

    Sastra says:
    24 September 2011 at 3:27 am

    Supernaturalists seem to have a lot of trouble trying to make sense of abstractions and levels of experience: they want to take everything literally, as irreducible substances. Love is only real to them if it’s a thing, a sort of spiritual-substance which is made of neither matter nor energy because it is the immaterial essence of love. Ironically, that makes them super-materialists — spinning material into finer and finer substances until like only comes from like. Love is derived from love. Otherwise, it can only have the same properties that were there in its origin.

    Despite their claims to be so comfortable with “higher levels” of reality, supernaturalists are concrete thinkers. They can only make sense of immaterial abstractions by turning them into spirit-things in a spirit-world. It’s the same sort of composition fallacy that causes people to have a serious problem with understanding how life can come from non-life. Things are supposed to be stable, discontinuous units of essential natures which are forever separated by what they ARE. If inert matter can live, it must be because a vital force made of life gets into the matter to somehow to make it live.

  164. KG says

    The point again is, there can be no evidence for love. – goddist idiot

    Isn’t it amazing quite how stupid goddists can be? Of course there can be evidence for (and for that matter, against) love: in how people behave toward the supposed object of their love. We make judgements about whether one person loves another on this basis all the time – about whether another person loves us, about situations involving third parties, and even, sometimes, about whether we actually love someone we are supposed, or have supposed ourselves, to love. Crucially, these judgements can be made on the basis of publically observable facts; and revised on the basis of further such facts.

    It’s worth noting that in principle, there could be evidence of a similar kind for the existence of a specific deity. If the devotees of some deity gained magical powers, or even became either extremely virtuous or extremely rich in ways not otherwise explicable, that could at least be prima facie evidence that something in their religion was right. But since there is no evidence of this kind, goddists are driven to claim that there could not be such evidence, and even, contrary to plain fact, that there could not be evidence of love.

  165. What a Maroon says

    Isn’t it amazing quite how stupid goddists can be? Of course there can be evidence for (and for that matter, against) love: in how people behave toward the supposed object of their love.

    Also, they seem to confuse evidence with proof. Witness the exchanges above:
    Poster 1: so-and-so does these actions which we would predict if that person is in love; therefore, we have evidence of that person’s love.
    Goddist: But maybe that person isn’t really in love; maybe there’s another explanation, so therefore you can’t have evidence.

    It’s like saying you can’t use fingerprints as evidence of a person’s guilt because that person may not be guilty.

  166. Dave, the Kwisatz Haderach says

    Just gonna chime in to say how much I love you all. Even you morgiana, despite being a vapid little necrohystricinophile (nice word, mind if I borrow it?). I love anyone who can entertain me as much as this thread has.

  167. kristinc, ~delicate snowflake~ says

    Atheists don’t have a sense of wooooooooooooooooooooonderrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

    *eyeroll*

  168. says

    Here’s a couple I just heard yesterday.
    1. gawd must be watching over you! This during a scare that had to be tested (the fear was possible cancer..turned out to be bowel wall thickening, polyps, ulcerations, and a few eroded areas).Sorry for the late post but, I just slept off the sedation.

    2.I have a remitting/relapsing condition that renders certain parts of my body useless and clumsy for periods of time and exhausts me in the process. I have been largely absent from FB PET and here dealing with this and recovering. This fatheist decided to tell me that their sky fairy has plans for me .

    I told both fatheists that their delusional construct had nothing to do with it.Part of the credit goes to my being a stubborn individual and a fighter. The larger part goes to a fine team of doctors determined to help me continue the good fight.
    Somehow I managed to keep myself from braining them with the nearest I.V. pole.

  169. says

    Not that I think I’m so important as to have all of you remember who I am…It’s been a while since I’ve posted.And not that I truly care if my name is up there in the previous post. I’m my own boss and a soon to be (again) student. But I really had to get those two off my chest.