Comments

  1. uglygeek says

    I miss when theist callers were calling just to say “I believe because it’s written in the Bible, and you unbelievers will all fry in hell forever!” In a way, it was more honest. Instead there was so much philosophical/esoteric nonsense in this episode… Prophetic dreams, falsehood of naturalism, Biblical numerology… it’s becoming a comedy 🙂
    Evidently, years of atheist videos on the internet passed the message that theists have the burden of proof, and theist callers do backwards somersaults to try to come up with any kind of proof, no matter how ridiculous it is. When what they really mean is “I believe in MY religion because it’s true, and because I would not like if it was not true, and that’s all!”

  2. says

    Matt thank you again, i appreciate your dedication to seeking whatever is true, although several times i was unable to finish a idea before a retort, but thank you for taking my conspiracy/coincidence theory call, its hard to answer a osmosis of information into a few pat answers for others to see in a gestalt way, especially when it’s a orientation that requires not being downloaded through predictive programming for example that more technology = more advanced. Most people will and do love to think they are well managed at the top, and trust their governments like sheep to a shepherd. It’s all well and good as long as i’m good is the motto of the 21st century. Perfect perception management on the masses- masses meaning slavery for those in the dark.

    Ian Butler – You’ve sure been tricked by the tail – Conspiracy nonsense is much more discerning of nonsense that comes from the religious or scientific end who ignores certain realities written about by the aristocratic families of London in books before world war 1 and in older works of Free masonic encyclopedias that are out of print all together. Freemasonry was in every country before “Great” Britain went into other countries thinking they would convert the people into Freemasons. Coincidence theorists must never touch on touchy subjects because it would expose their extreme compartmentalized shell game, such as the Origins of Money, Origins of the Genders(Think about it how would evolution not rewind back to a unisex animal?), Origins of People, Origins of much older civilizations (which is written in many old Indian books), and the term conspiracy theory was given to us in the 60’s by the CIA(Remember Counter intelligence/Central Intelligence Agency) proves that your programmed to discard anyone who questions the rhetoric of any government.

  3. Sören Lohse says

    I honestly do not like the judgement of forsight phenomenons from both sides. The theologicel aproach to claim these for their religion and the sientific aproach to dismiss the existence of these things at all.
    I had a few of these phenomenons myself, they were pretty accurate and pretty random. But that is it for me.
    I got no explaination for that, but i do not dismiss their existence or claim that these things are supernatural.

    Our brain does small predictions the whole day, small subcontious calculations. Like f.e. the speed of cars during traffic, all hand to eye coordinations are calculations by the brain, or we might “know” what a person will do next or how they will react in certain situations.
    So why are there sometimes big meaningful one among those predictions?? idk
    But i disagree with both aproaches, but i agree that there are certainly people out there scaming other people with pretenting to be or have reliable predictions.

  4. bluestar says

    uglygeek #1 – I’m with you on your thoughts. All of this philosophical minutia is such a far cry from faith. And I agree that the religious of today feel the need to “prove” that what their faith is placed in is reality. Centuries ago when religions flourished the vast majority of the population were uneducated, resources not available to them readily even if they were. They believed what they were taught/told and did not question. Today in the information age one can undertake as little or as much study in a subject matter as they desire, the only cost is time. Resources abound for those who seek them. So along comes the new breed of religious zealot. Spending their time in places like Ken Ham’s A.I.G., and Morris’s I.C.R. to *educate* themselves and prepare for the debate battles with the heathens. Holy Rebel is just a self sensationalizing internet star wanna-be. He has a way of mixing bible verses with Jacksonville street hustle approaches. Hes already posted a response video of his experience at TAE on his YT channel. I usually implore my religious friends to just maintain their position based on faith and nothing more. Once you step out of that frame and try to prove the reality of your faith, it is like approaching an artillery line with an unloaded pistol. However as time goes on we are just going to see more of the philosophical gymnastics because there really is nothing left.

  5. Monocle Smile says

    @bluestar

    I usually implore my religious friends to just maintain their position based on faith and nothing more. Once you step out of that frame and try to prove the reality of your faith, it is like approaching an artillery line with an unloaded pistol.

    Wait, why would you not want that? I, for one, am all in favor of religious people taking up falsifiable claims, because you can burn those to cinders and make an example of them. It’s a much more compelling way of getting people to drop their religion…or at least expose it for what it is.

  6. QuakerMaid says

    I have been watching the YT videos for a few weeks. This question has been bothering me for a while (I have my own thoughts on this, but I don’t want to push the answerers into my specific view):
    I am wondering if some atheists take issue with some atheists referring to themselves as ‘satanists’ (?)
    It would be nice to hear this addressed on a future AE episode.

  7. t90bb says

    Who else has the feeling that if Matt didnt eventually cut off Derek hed still be talking but saying nothing in an effort to falsify naturalism………

    If theists want to argue for god….and claim god wants us all to believe….why cant they just ask or convince god to appear LOL…..

    their god remains the undisputed hide and seek champion of the universe!

    On a more serious note I am sympathetic to those that suffer trauma at the acknowledgement that they have lost faith. A great and loving magic genie that is watching and protecting and comforting can bring peace. Much like a delusion that you have a million dollars in your checking account. I dont make light of the experience. Hopefully they will learn that there are many of us in the same boat and most are willing to help and listen and support one another. We may not be all each other needs….but the reality appears that it is the best we have. Loving and caring for each other is important. Many of us found that honest skepticism led us from a twisted fair tale. Its not easy for some of us. In time we adjust. Finding like minded people is super useful. In time many of us can laugh at our old ideas and beliefs. We are but a speck. Coming to grips with realizing we have no reason to think we are at the center of grand and majestic plan can bring relief as well as fear. Love you peeps!

  8. Monocle Smile says

    Holy Rebel is a clown. Nobody with any substance between their ears falls for that used-car salesman garbage.

    “I don’t record everything in my ‘prophetic visions’ because reasons” and then later he talks about “symbolism” after making claims about knowing things in detail well in advance. He lied his face off immediately and didn’t even blink. I’m glad Shelley called his charlatan ass out. He called to pimp his YouTube channel and preach, not to have a dialogue.
    LOL the screaming at the end. Fuck that guy.

  9. Lamont Cranston says

    I did not get to see the show in real-time on Sunday, but I watched most of it later. Instead I spent 3 hours Sunday afternoon in a meeting with someone preparing for a debate with William Lane Craig. It was a group thing as he was looking for input with regard to what he intended to present and what everyone thought might be Craig’s responses and the ways in which Craig might resort to his dishonesty and deflections and how to address those.

    I say the above because the discussion got into the realm of beliefs in a way somewhat different from what I have heard before and that pertains to what I noted on this and many shows when talking with theist callers. This is unfortunately a little long and a bit of an expose about me in the process.

    The point that was made in the discussion Sunday afternoon is that there are two parts to belief. There are the beliefs themselves and then there is the belief process that people use. What we discussed is not why people may just believe a specific thing, but why they tend to believe whatever they believe.

    The reason this struck me is, after the discussion, I noted that theists on this show and many other shows resorted to convoluted philosophical arguments for why a god or particular god exists. I also noted that not a single one of those people ever developed their own belief based upon the intricate arguments they were trying to present.

    The truth is, with regard to a god belief and many others, people believe what they believe predominantly for a very different reason.

    We are a species that evolved and presently exist because we are a social species that historically have depended on being part of a group for our very survival. Those that were not part of a group tended to be the ones who were picked off most easily by predators and their propensity for going it alone did not proliferate in the species for obvious reasons. As a result, in general, we have become evolutionarily “wired” to conform to a group.

    This is why about 75% of Americans identify as being some flavor of Christian. This is why about 99.5% of Iranians identify as being Muslim. It is also why 79.8% of Indians identify as Hindu. It is why about 98% of people in Thailand identify as Buddhist.

    We are hard wired to conform to the beliefs of the group of people we depend upon. Those beliefs can change, but that can come with a price and for some the price is too high (isolation, shaming, shunning, ostracizing, and even death).

    I myself was a long time member of an abusive Christian church. No, that is not why I am now an atheist, but the abuse is why I did finally leave that particular church. The price was high. Overnight I absolutely lost contact and support from about 30 or 40 people I would have counted as friends. These are people I had known for a very long time. There were additionally over a hundred people that were good acquaintances and a church membership of almost a thousand people who would have been supportive in various ways should the need arise. The only saving grace is that my small immediate family was not invested in that same church, but they all lived elsewhere. So essentially my wife and I were suddenly pretty isolated and going it alone.

    I relate to the people who initially come to the realization that they are atheists and suddenly feel isolated and alone. What are they inevitably told on the show? They are told they are not actually alone and are given information that will lead them to another group of people. Why? Because we all realize the fundamental built in need we have to be part of a group of people who have similar beliefs.

    This innate need we feel for support of a group is why I facilitated a support group for several years for people leaving that church. It is also why my name and number was available publicly on the internet for about 15 years to take calls from ex-members, friends and family to provide assistance and support. It is why I participated in 3 ten minute investigative segments related to that church on a local TV news broadcast. Those TV segments were initiated as a result of a call to me from Rick Ross (I was never an associate of his). I was shown as a shadow with my voice altered (hence my pseudonym as Lamont Cranston – aka The Shadow). It is why I posted a lot of stuff on the internet for almost 20 years with my full real name with regard to the abuses that were an integral part of the church where I had been a member. It is also why my wife and I and a couple of other people had a lunch discussion with Steve Hassan (Combating Cult Mind Control) for our own support and to be better able to support others. Yes I am old.

    I know that Matt, Traci, Jenn and other hosts have said in various ways from time to time that they do what they do to show people that they really don’t need to hold to an irrational belief. People really can think for themselves, believe things that are actually true, and there are others of like minds out there that they can associate with and find support from.

    We may not always realize exactly why we have certain beliefs, but it is possible to reason your way out of those that are irrationally held.

    Lamont Cranston

  10. Monocle Smile says

    Derek opening with ‘are you invested in being an atheist’ is a terrible start. Attempting to prove naturalism is false by committing a laughable category error and piss-poor semantic trickery is even worse. He then segues into a bunch of philosowibble espoused by nobody except bad religious apologists (short version: “I can present a situation that MIGHT be explained by agency, therefore naturalism is false”).

    Here’s a mouth-breather who took a freshman philosophy course and thinks he’s the next great “sophisticated theologian.” What this loser needs to do is read some Karl Popper and then go through high school science again. Falsification is the name of the game, and these godbots are obsessed with the inverse. All they do is try to pull out data that is “consistent” with their “god hypothesis” and ignore all inconsistent data AND all hypotheses that are also consistent with that data.

    In other words, they try to score points and then demand that all the gaping, obvious holes in their argumentation be ignored because they’re “distractions” and the atheist hasn’t addressed their pet point. I’ve said this before, but this is the tactic of a defense lawyer knowingly defending a clearly guilty client. News flash: “not guilty beyond a reasonable doubt” is not the same thing as “innocent.”

  11. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @Lamont Cranston #10:

    We are hard wired to conform to the beliefs of the group of people we depend upon.

    No need for evo-psych. Any individual’s information about facts and acceptable behavior / sensibilities is limited, particularly if dependency anchors them to a tightly connected group..
     
    Browser Game: Nicky Case – The Wisdom and/or Madness of Crowds (30 min)

    why do some crowds turn to madness, or wisdom? […] network science can guide us! […] to understand crowds, we should look not at the individual people but at their connections.
    […]
    People look to their social connections to understand their world. For example, people look to their peers to find out what % of their friends are, say, binge drinkers. […] Just like how the earth seems flat because we’re on it, people may get the wrong ideas about society because they’re in it.
    […]
    we have a person with some information. Some misinformation. […] And every day, that person spreads the rumor, like a virus, to their friends. And they spread it to their friends. And so on.
    […]
    Note: despite the negative name, “contagions” can be good or bad (or neutral or ambiguous). There’s strong statistical evidence that smoking, health, happiness, voting patterns, and cooperation levels are all “contagious” – and even some evidence that suicides and mass shootings are, too.
    […]
    Too few connections, and an idea can’t spread. Too many connections, and you get groupthink.

     
    * Playing is optional. There’s a “Skip” in the bottom-right corner to (re-)read everything.

  12. Monocle Smile says

    Oh my fuck.
    “Beliefs are concrete objects.”
    “They map to brain states.”
    “Well, that violates this rule I pulled out of my ass, so you’re wrong.”

    Lol minds are composed of beliefs? WTF? AND minds can exist absent a brain?
    What a nut. For the other windbags out there: when making a case that requires large amounts of argumentation, START AT THE END. This is communication 101: reveal the ending, then show your work. That’s the fuckin’ point of an abstract in a scientific paper.

  13. Ian Butler says

    MS,
    Reminds me of the upside down triangle of journalism 101, begin with the most important information and work your way back from there. It’s the opposite of storytelling so people sometimes have a hard time grasping the concept.

    LC,
    Thanks for sharing your personal story, you are a valuable contributor to this blog and now we have a glimpse into why!

  14. Monocle Smile says

    Does anyone here know what in the sam hill Zack was babbling about? That was one of the most bizarre calls AXP has had in a while. Shakespeare and Babylonian history? Something about ancient people? “Secret” meanings of words? Was this just a strange mix of conspiracy theories?

    Oh, this is the Alan Watt guy. Thanks, Ian Butler. Colossal waste of time. Another high school burnout obsessed with finding easy ways to feel superior to other people.

  15. Monocle Smile says

    Boy, the bible codes guy made the same stupid mistakes Derek made…he started with a pointless, condescending stroll through basic rational empiricism as it applies to science and leapt to baffling bullshit of the highest order.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cicada_3301#Claims_of_being_a_cult

    Looks like some people who are far too stupid to have ever heard the word “cryptography” are freaking out about stuff they don’t understand. In other words…most of human history. This is more appalling today because we live in the information age and there’s really no excuse for being so woefully uninformed. Nothing to see here; move along.

  16. Monocle Smile says

    That last dude has some fanfic of Back to the Future blended with Prometheus rattling around in his head. Time travelers? WTF? This is just more “I don’t understand and I’m fucking lazy, so I’m going to conjure some easy-ass answer to boost my ego.”

    To expose “specified complexity,” simply ask someone to calculate the specified complexity of a particular string of letters. Not even William Dembski, the inventor of the term, can answer this question, nor can any ID proponent.

  17. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    It was a relief when they were able to look up Alan Watt, figure out the guys was spewing conspiracy nonsense and move on. Mr. Watt is kooky enough to have a rationalwiki page: https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Alan_Watt

    As much as it pains me to defend that person, you got the wrong Alan Watt. Even the rationalwiki page has an entry that says “see also”, referring to Alan Watts.
    https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Alan_Watts
    Alan Watts (1915–1973) was a British-American philosopher, writer, public speaker and translator of Eastern philosophies for Western audiences. He introduced the hippie crowd to Buddhism via his most famous book, The Way of Zen.

  18. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @EnlightenmentLiberal #18:

    you got the wrong Alan Watt Even the rationalwiki page has an entry that says “see also”, referring to Alan Watts.

     

    Matt (1:40:59): What year did you interview Alan Watts?
     
    Zack: Uh, this year.
     
    Matt: Cause he died in 1973.
     
    Zack: No no no. It’s Alan Watt, with no ‘s’.

     

    Shelly (1:43:25): I looked it up. It says he’s a conspiracy theorist who runs the online ministry […] new world order conspiracy theories […] Governments are using the conflict in the Middle East to distract us from the real problem of chemtrails.
     
    Zack: Yeah, I wana preface too that he is not necessarily telling everything […]
     
    Matt: Oh bullshit. If he’s been publicly labelled a conspiracy theorist… to then double down and say there’s also things he’s not telling us… I’m not a conspiracy theorist, and I’m not interested in this esoteric stuff.

  19. efogoto says

    @18 Enlightenment Liberal: Check 1:41:00 and subsequent of the video. He means the currently living guy Watt, not the Watts one who deceased in 1973.

  20. Ian Butler says

    EL, we all assumed it was Alan Watts, but no, it was some crazy conspiracy theorist who probably got most of his fame by having a name that sounds famous.

    Conspiracy theorists are the bane of humanity, and the internet has only enabled them to get their word out beyond their immediate circle. I just had a Facebook conversation with a guy who thinks Michelle Obama is a man and goblins are real. It’s like the dark ages all over again. Of course religion is the most pervasive conspiracy theory, letting go of theism is no guarantee of proper skepticism, but it is an essential prerequisite.

  21. RationalismRules says

    @Ian Butler

    Conspiracy theorists are the bane of humanity, and the internet has only enabled them to get their word out beyond their immediate circle.

    Sure has.

    And here I went off to find a link for a recent study that has been in the news recently, referred to by multiple articles in multiple news sources, which claims that the rise in flat-eartherism has been heavily contributed to by YouTube videos. Ironically, although I can find numerous articles about the ‘study’, I can’t find any that actually link to, or cite, anything published.

    Maybe it’s just a conspiracy.

  22. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @RationalismRules #23:

    a recent study […] which claims that the rise in flat-eartherism has been heavily contributed to by YouTube videos. Ironically, although I can find numerous articles about the ‘study’, I can’t find any that actually link to, or cite, anything published.

    The author’s given a couple presentations at AAAS meetings. Nothing published about that yet AFAICT.
     
    Query: Google Scholar Profile – Asheley R. Landrum
     
    Site: Landrum’s Alternative Beliefs Project
    – PDFs of the slides aren’t informative on their own.
    – There’s a link to osf.io, which hosts some documents and raw data (in the interest of open science). Only mention of YouTube or video watching was in a draft of survey questions: “APB Code Book v4.docx”. It had a checklist of regularly consumed media platforms / organizations / individuals.
     
    Channel: YouTube – Ashenange1
    – No footage of the presentation here. =P
     
    Her Twitter account merely shared the Guardian article.

  23. says

    Zack – the Hegelian dialectic of atheism vs theism was given to the masses just as coincidence theory was also given to the public that all governments are upfront with everybody and science is just for the enhancement of all people, even though more confusion on reality than ever before has occurred with internet. That’s how counter intelligence works at the systemic level, enjoy your authorized version of science and evolution. I never promised comfort i only promise what i can gleam is the truth. Burn out my ass I have learned more in the past 4 years than i ever did in your authorized public education system which by the way didn’t copy any books written from real science done in the 19th century. Coincidence theorists…perfect management.

  24. Simon & Mrs Wendy Hosking says

    Just posting how much I enjoyed the intro.

    It was live (and I believe not super rehearsed) and a little rough – but so much fun. It would be great if Matt and Shelly could do a studio recording to make a unique intro for the show.

    Back to the show…I’m only half way through but so much facepalm today. I guess that’s why I listen but the callers have been particularly dishonest and inept so far.

    – Simon Hosking (the opinions stated may not be those of Wendy Hosking)

  25. nemoeac says

    The intro to this episode was the best I’ve ever seen! With Matt plucking away awkwardly and then the segueway to Shelley performing the intro song live. Loved it!

    I think it’s also great that they started the show with an experiment. If Kaitlyn Smart (the friend of the show Matt mentioned) does recover from her surgery quickly (as we all hope and expect that she will), we will finally have indisputable, absolute and irrefutable proof that group hugs delivered electronically WORK to expedite recovery from surgeries! Right? 🙂

  26. Jabbly says

    Just posting my first comment as I’ve been following the blog/show for several months and thought I’d give it a try.

  27. zack says

    The Arnold pumping iron chodes and danger will robinson your mincing your jokes when its a even debate. I bet i could wash up all you combined in one single sentence in a debate. Maybe two. You’d have the advantage of a lynch mob after the debate.

  28. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @EnlightenmentLiberal #37:

    Clear troll posting in thread.

    Zack’s first post #3 has a name link leading to 2.5 hours of rambling audio on YouTube: “Alan Watt talking to zzZack”. His channel description reads… “Uncontrollable Viagra”
     
    Zack at #31 has a name link to the Alan Watt conspiracy site.

  29. says

    The reason i was going to ask matt for a definition of ontology is because at the level of mind language forms and informs the computer you put that language into, therefore we can clearly reconcile why some men stay in power why others so not. Its proven already language itself is a form of code, the language programmer knows the conclusion you will come to when you use that code. atheists are the most resourceful people on the planet cause they awakened to at least the first step of waking up…not following man made religions….its up to those who can look at all the levels in all of its new agey and scientific level perception management to make it and start putting things together from ancient times to today with all the levels of social engineering. Not including ancient times when they knew already by Plato’s time about atoms/Adam and about celestial bodies meaning someone had been watching the sky observing for far longer. Plato didn’t use reasoning to find out atoms were particles of physical matter but he did have a father named solon who did speak to Egyptians and priestcraft who informed him of the mysteries. By mysteries they mean their inner religion or aristocracy who rule over the profane. Etc. This is old old knowledge its just science is the good news.

  30. paxoll says

    Anyone able to follow this stream of consciousness, word salad? Maybe our mushroom man can reach the level of awareness needed to tune into his universal consciousness.

  31. says

    If you go to alans video i reposted on my channel called alan watt – mans basic need
    Thats sort of where i would start suggesting you inquire into the nuances of how religion and science have branched from the same tree, but theres too much knowledge to give single “buzz words” or catch phrases of truth because its learned by osmosis not by one pat answer to another, there is too much knowledge that most people only strip mine , there is heavier elements that you can mine much deeper but many unfortunately once the toothpaste is out cant put back in so dont if you want your toothpaste to stay in your container.

  32. zack says

    Paxoll – unfortunately its streams of consciousness most havent been under for very long time, thats actually a good question and something you took from terrence mckenna im guessing or timothy leary both of which were spearheads for the lsd/mushroom counter intelligence formed by the cia starting with aleister crowley and his shamanic/sex magik workshops with amazonian shamans too who he claimed were some of them knew about freemasonry. Tell me how do shamans in a jungle know about freemasons already before someone the cia informant like crowley?

  33. t90bb says

    zack….the clear acidosis of the fine membrane is was behooves you to the kingdom. It is only after slanderous notoriety may we wish false indemnity. Parchment in the filament is all that is, but needed in the contrary position.

  34. buddyward says

    @zack #42

    paxoll has not made any claims. You are asking him a question to which he has made no assertions or claims. I doubt that you even know what he meant when he says

    “Maybe our mushroom man can reach the level of awareness needed to tune into his universal consciousness.”

    Perhaps instead of trying to spew out word salads that has nothing to do with what a person says you can try asking them what they meant. I would like to give you a heads up, no one here is impressed with people who try too hard to look smart by stringing incoherent words together or who tries to name drop on almost every post they make.

  35. zack says

    Think of it like mark twain says the truth IS strange. Or jbs haldane said the universe is not only stranger than we suppose, its stranger than CAN suppose.

    T90bb – the predilections of multiferous motifs are indignant through visceral causal modalities in discord between redundant plaigarisms and altruistic tendencies.

  36. zack says

    Buddyward – ok still you dont have to retort everything with “oh he didnt say that” all i am pointing to is the truth im not asking for you to acknowledge me have I? Do yourself a favor call the show and watch the hegelian technique of mind control for yourself, if you even touch on touchy subjects that the show isnt prepared for clearly your called names! Oh and if anyones reading who is interested in deciphering, its simple read shakespeares plays written in his font and compare to encyclopedia/dictionaries printed from before ww1. Come to your own ideas too. Its not one way to do it because theres so much to learn its absurd thinking you should know how it all is coded in one pat answer.

  37. zack says

    Yall im not going to comment from now till i call again , but if yall want heres my advice. We are here 4 a reason that is totally up
    To
    You
    The
    Individual

  38. buddyward says

    @zack

    Wow more incoherent babble. Is that your tin foil hat on the floor? I think you dropped it.

  39. RationalismRules says

    @Zack #48
    “Comments”. Is that what you’re calling it? I thought you were just dribbling on your keyboard.

  40. RationalismRules says

    @Zack #48
    “Comments”. Is that what you’re calling it? I thought you were just dribbling on your keyboard.

  41. nemoeac says

    I’m new here and I have a newbie question.

    Well, actually I’ve been here about a week now. How long do I get to say that I’m new?

    These comment threads get a lot of posts and many of them are thought provoking and well thought out and I see value in reading almost all of them. But then there are Zack’s posts which so far appears to be complete gibberish. Is there any way I can block him (and others like him) so that his messages don’t appear in the comments thread when I visit to try and stay current with the converation? Or do I just have to try to remember his name so I can scroll past his messages manually…?

  42. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @nemoeac #51:

    Is there any way I can block him

    As it happens, what you’re looking for can be found on your inaugural thread.
     
    Comment: Axp 23.05 – CA7746 #90

  43. Lamont Cranston says

    nemoeac says in #51

    Is there any way I can block him (and others like him) so that his messages don’t appear in the comments thread when I visit to try and stay current with the converation? Or do I just have to try to remember his name so I can scroll past his messages manually…?

    If you are using Firefox you can get this add on https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/blog-killfile/

    Then when your mouse pointer is over the poster’s name line it will give you the option to “hush” that user. All of his/her postings will disappear until or unless you want to see them (you can unhush, or just view a particular comment if you desire).

    Lamont Cranston

  44. t90bb says

    zack….the proliferation of the insufferable majesty of the notorious shall calcify hither to the tragic. Henceforth the paramecium of the absolute is transparent to the whimsical nature of the devout. May the proximity of the obliteration of the pharmacologically insincere vindicate those that posit the notion of the rectification.

  45. Ammon Farr says

    Listening to callers who are struggling to let go of their faith always makes me think of the song, Letting Go sung by Colm Wilkinson.

  46. Ronald Kyle says

    @#54 t90bb says

    zack….the proliferation of the insufferable majesty of the notorious shall calcify hither to the tragic. Henceforth the paramecium of the absolute is transparent to the whimsical nature of the devout.

    👏👏👏👏👏
    And when the broken hearted people living in the world agree, there will be an answer. For though they may be parted there is still a chance that they will see.

     

    May the proximity of the obliteration of the pharmacologically insincere vindicate those that posit the notion of the rectification.

    Let it be, let it be, the above are words of wisdom, let it be….👌👌👌👍👍👍

  47. paxoll says

    @Quakermaid
    My opinion of the term Satanist is that it is misleading and serves only as an argument ad absurdum. Much like the term Pastafarian. It has no linguistic descriptive power to accurately convey meaning to anyone not intimately aware of theistic apologetics and the heuristic atheist responses to those arguments.

  48. Ronald Kyle says

    @#8 t90bb says

    We are but a speck. Coming to grips with realizing we have no reason to think we are at the center of grand and majestic plan can bring relief as well as fear.

    Humans are trembling lumps of insignificant ephemeral flotsam and glitches of jetsam tossed adrift on the waves and currents of space-time oceans.
    See the Total Perspective Vortex
     

    A great and loving magic genie that is watching and protecting and comforting can bring peace

    We futilely try to construe by any self-delusion a significance for our fleeting moments of existence, punctuated by terror and inexorable calamities. Impotent to exact justice or to stem the currents of time, we raise our arms up like children, whimpering in supplication to an imagined sky daddy to lift us up and give us a comforting hug and to beat the neighboring bullies up.
     

    their god remains the undisputed hide and seek champion of the universe!

    God delusions are the product of a hyperactive infantile imagination. Nothing but wishful thinking and puerile fear of the unknown. A jejune need for love and support and comforting; a fatuous desire for vengeance and justice and protection against the meanies.
     
    And as usual throughout the chronicles of human perfidy, this juvenile psychological condition was and is cynically and parasitically exploited by vicious clever brigands and wily foppish poltroons to bamboozle and fleece the quivering shivering herds of sheep.
     

    many of us in the same boat and most are willing to help and listen and support one another

    It is dispiriting that people who have matured, and have shed the delusions of infancy, still feel a need to clump together in substitute churches psychologically comforting islands of flotsam and jetsam much like the lumps of debris we see bobbing and jouncing on Earth’s oceans.
     

    Loving and caring for each other is important.

    Unfortunately, as usual yet again, pernicious life forms will inevitably devise artifices for exploiting those islands of clumped together dross new churches to perpetuate humanity’s proclivity for skullduggery and treachery.

  49. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @Ronald Kyle #61:
    Why the performative misanthropy?
     

    psychologically comforting islands of flotsam and jetsam

    You sound lonely.

  50. nemoeac says

    Off topic if that’s okay…

    In many AXP YouTube clips, I’ve heard Matt ask callers “How did you determine Satan was the bad one?” which I think is a great question – but I’ve never heard it answered. Has it ever been discussed/answered on the show? (If so – any idea which episode?)

    But, putting aside my lack of belief for a second and considering the stories I’ve heard about both God and the Devil, I walk away with the impression that they were likely equals or colleagues or peers of some sort – until God became insecure and jealous that all the attention was not his alone – or until God and Satan had a difference in opinion about what to do with/about humanity – or maybe Satan offended God some other way (like not bringing a bottle of wine as a guest at God’s house for dinner one weekend) – or perhaps Satan is an ex-lover of God’s – but whatever the actual situation was – they had a bad breakup and God orchestrated (probably via betrayal and treachery) the removal of Satan. Through trickery and deceit, God caused Satan to be de-allocated from the “Earth” project and assigned to something else. This left God as the sole caretaker of humanity, but he was still pissed off by Satan so he created and had published all of this ridiculous propaganda which defamed Satan and demanded worship, obedience and belief in addition to denounce that other guy. But we have to remember that we are hearing only one side of a story. There may be some lost writings from the time that report what actually happened. We may eventually discover reports that say one congregation of early Christians were forced to chant “Lock Him Up! Lock Him Up!” even though God never produced any evidence that Satan had done anything wrong. Some may say that the original argument between God and Satan started as a dispute over who was going to pay for the construction of the Pearly Gates. They may go on to expose that Satan was of the mind that Heaven did not need gates – but a mentally unstable God was insistent, saying “you can’t have a strong Heaven without gates! Gates work!”. He may even have claimed that the people of Purgatory would pay for them.

    It seems completely logical (to me) to presume that God was also removed from the project when management found out He had ruined “project Earth” by directly interfering with early human inhabitants, by demanding undeserved personal worship, by taking credit for actions that were not his, by adding hundreds of immoral commandments to the management approved 3 commandments, and by threatening those guilty of small offences with eternal torture. This completely explains Gods abrupt departure and lengthy absence. He hasn’t come back – because he can’t! “Management” has either abandoned us completely because we have been so badly contaminated by God – or they have installed a more stable entity in God’s place – one that knows not to interfere in the minutia of our individual lives – but who may step in once per millennia to prevent an extinction event that would exterminate all life on the planet. (The new guy doesn’t listen to prayers and won’t help you find you keys, beat that disease or win the lottery – so stop wasting your time)

    Ok – I started with a serious question – but as I was composing it, I obviously had an urge to have a bit of fun with it – but seriously – everything in the Bible that is attributed to God absolutely does seem (to me) like the propaganda that an insecure, fear-mongering, petty tyrant, wanna-be dictator, terrified of losing power would distribute. Perhaps Satan wouldn’t be any better, but I have trouble imagining how he could he worse! If I was ever forced to pick sides based only on what I know at this moment – I would choose to stand on the side that opposes the celestial dictatorship.

    See how I worded that last sentence? Even after 50 years of atheism and believing fully that God is likely “the bad guy” in the story, I couldn’t bring myself to type “sign me up with Satan” as a direct statement so I eluded to it instead… all I know is that Satan never demanded my worship or threatened me with eternal torture – in fact, he seems pretty content to just let me be me without passing any judgement!

    I apologize to the members here if this post is inappropriate – but I was glad to take this opportunity to get some stuff off my chest that I’ve been thinking about (off and on) for decades. And if the Satan vs God topic has been explored on the show before, I really would like to find and listen to those episodes…?

  51. Lamont Cranston says

    nemoeac says in #63

    In many AXP YouTube clips, I’ve heard Matt ask callers “How did you determine Satan was the bad one?” which I think is a great question – but I’ve never heard it answered. Has it ever been discussed/answered on the show? (If so – any idea which episode?)

    Ok – I started with a serious question – but as I was composing it, I obviously had an urge to have a bit of fun with it – but seriously – everything in the Bible that is attributed to God absolutely does seem (to me) like the propaganda that an insecure, fear-mongering, petty tyrant, wanna-be dictator, terrified of losing power would distribute. Perhaps Satan wouldn’t be any better, but I have trouble imagining how he could he worse! If I was ever forced to pick sides based only on what I know at this moment – I would choose to stand on the side that opposes the celestial dictatorship.

    Your speculation here is not terribly unlike my speculation a few threads back regarding how things actually would make more sense if the God(s) people follow was (were) actually malevolent. The contradictory commands (don’t kill, kill them all), the contradictory behaviors (kindness, striking people dead on a whim), the contradictory revelations to various groups of people that incite hatred and wars, etc all making much more sense with regard to a malevolent diety.

    Then if you consider the story of genesis and figure the snake is either Satan or allied with Satan, you have to begin to wonder, did the snake actually lie? Actually he told the truth. God said if they ate of the tree they would die. They didn’t and followers of God have had to go through gyrations ever since to “explain” how God didn’t really mean they would “die… die” but that they would “die” in a way that they couldn’t possibly understand at the time.

    Of course none of this means I believe in a malevolent God either, just that an imperfect, jealous, malevolent God actually is more in line with what the Bible says. As such, it would be harder to argue against the “truth” of the Bible if one were not always having to contort a malevolent God into a benevolent one. The slavery argument becomes pointless. The biblical contradictions become a mute point. The multitude of flavors of Christianity and all the other incompatible versions of God is completely consistent with the behaviors of a malevolent God. The capriciousness or reality itself is consistent, but does not prove, the existence of a malevolent God (bad things happening to good people, good things happening to bad people, the failure of prayer, etc.).

    Lamont Cranston

  52. indianajones says

    God as a concept still wouldn’t make sense. But suppose omni-benevolence were cast aside. If instead you cast s/he/it as a tantrummy toddler who is too tired to know what they want any more, it would actually help an apologist a lot.

    Slavery, ie defence of, would be a good example here I think. It would still be evil, still horrible, still indefensible don’t get me wrong, But it would save a lot of mental gymnastics for, lets say G-Man, if he didn’t also have to convince himself, let alone anyone else, that it was also consistent with omni-benevolence as well..

  53. Ronald Kyle says

    @#63 nemoeac says
     
    I loved your post… quite clever… very humorous the way you tied the whole farce to (nudge nudge wink wink) current affairs… hilarious.
     

    I wish to do TWO responses to your post … one is serious … the other is a joke I wrote a while back.

     

    There may be some lost writings from the time that report what actually happened.

    As a serious answer… there is one that is detailed in the Talmud and it is a doozie of a story. I will discuss this later when I have more time.

     

    We may eventually discover reports that say one congregation of early Christians were forced to chant “Lock Him Up! Lock Him Up!” even though God never produced any evidence that Satan had done anything wrong.

    Again part of the serious answer … Judaism is an EVOLVED sect of Zoroastrianism much like Christianity and Islam are EVOLVED from Judaism… thus your funny (wink wink nudge nudge) “lock him up” chant for Satan is in fact quite correct… if you take it that Satan is in fact Ahriman Asha the adversary of Ahura Mazda (god).
     

    I will discuss (maybe) this serious aspect when I get more time later.
     

    This completely explains Gods abrupt departure and lengthy absence. He hasn’t come back – because he can’t! “Management” has either abandoned us completely.

    This reminded me of the JOKE that I wrote a long time ago… here it is ….
     

    If a devil wanted to cause strife and mayhem and schisms and atrocities between humans throughout the ages I doubt he could have done any better than the Buybull.
     

    Consider this funny story of what may have occurred on a sleepy afternoon eons ago:
     
    The scene: God and Satan are discussing the design of humans on a dull afternoon.

    G: I am going to create humans and give them wisdom and goodness and they will love me.

    S: So you are going to make them worship you?

    G: No…that defeats the purpose… They will do it out of reverence to me.

    S: Ah… but that is no good either. They can’t help but revere you if they know you and see you.

    G: Yeah… isn’t that the point?

    S: Not really… that doesn’t prove anything if they love you just because you do things for them and they can see you as a guardian and protector. They would be morons if they don’t and YOU cannot create morons can you?

    G: No… I cannot create morons… you are right. But Hmmmmm… you are right. How can I test that they would love me for me and not for the things I do for them?

    S: If I may suggest something?

    G: Well… go ahead!

    S: I think that you should NEVER EVER show yourself to them. If before they go extinct they have come to conclude that you are THE GOD then that shows they were sufficiently clever and a testament to your creative wisdom.

    G: OK… I will just help them ANONYMOUSLY.

    S: Oh no… that won’t do. If you help them that would be a dead give away… no?

    G: Ok… then I will just make sure no calamities would ever befall them.

    S: Oh… no that won’t do either… What kind of test is that? If nothing bad happens despite which they loved you then what kind of character test is that?

    G: Hmmm… ok… I will just let them be on their own and if they grow to love me then we know they loved me for me and not just because I helped them out.

    S: But that is not enough.

    G: Bloody hell… What now… what else do you want me to do.

    S: Well….One has a choice only if one has things to choose from. If there are no other temptations how can we know that they chose at all? We need to tempt them away from you and if they resist then we know how clever they are.

    G: I don’t like this. After all I love them and you now have me rain hell on them and not help them and then you want me to also DECEIVE them too?

    S: Well… it is up to you… but if you really want to be sure!

    G: What the bloody hell do you propose then?

    S: Here are my rules for the bet:
    🔹 You leave them all alone. You never show yourself or manifest any sign or indication of your existence.
    🔹 They are to be left to fend for themselves against all natural and man-made disasters and diseases and so forth.
    🔹 Every now and then, I will make sure to pretend to be some God and try to convince them to worship me as if I am the real god. I will also make sure that I do that many times in various places simultaneously.
    🔹 Let’s say I do that for one million years.
    🔹 At the end of that time, if there are any humans who are not fooled by the myriad of godly disguises, and are in fact not worshiping any of these disguises then YOU win.
    🔹 I get to keep the souls of the ones who were bamboozled by my shams. YOU get the ATHEISTS.
     

    G: Even the atheists who were killers and rapists? What about the theists who were good and their only fault is that they fell for your ruses?

    S: Well… what do you want?

    G: Any people who harm other people and have made any others miserable, you get whether they fell for your ruses or not. Any ones who have been kind and never intentionally or directly harmed anyone I get whether they fell for your ruses or not.

    S: That is not fair. I should get all the ones that worshiped me in any guises regardless. After all I can make a case that by worshiping my hoaxes they wasted valuable time which they could have better devoted to other tasks that could have benefited humanity more effectively and efficiently.

    G: Look… I don’t like you taking ANY souls. What are you going to do with them anyway… No!!!… my decision is final. I agree to all your proposals… EXCEPT… let’s just have it so that all people who die just stay that way… except for the ones who made life miserable for others… them… you get to torture for a thousand years and then extinguish.

    S: So even the good ones just die?

    G: Yes… all just die but for the bad ones whom you get to torture for a thousand years and then you extinguish them and we are done.

    S: So… let’s be clear about the terms:
    🔹 You never ever interfere or show your face.
    🔹 I get to do what I want.
    🔹 If by the end of a million years there are good atheists… you win… otherwise you lose.

     
    G: OK… you are on…

    S: How many matches do you want to play?

  54. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @nemoeac #63:

    considering the stories I’ve heard about both God and the Devil, I walk away with the impression that they were likely equals or colleagues or peers of some sort

     
    Article: Wikipedia – Devil

    Zoroastrianism
    Zoroastrianism probably introduced the first idea of the conceptual devil; a principle of evil independently existing apart from God. In Zoroastrianism, good and evil derive from two ultimately opposed forces. The force of good is called Ahura Mazda and the “destructive spirit” [Angra Mainyu aka Ahriman]. They are in eternal struggle and neither is all-powerful, especially Angra Mainyu is limited to space and time: in the end of time, he will be finally defeated. While Ahura Mazda creates what is good, Angra Mainyu is responsible for every evil and suffering in the world, such as toads and scorpions.
    […]
    Judaism
    Yahweh, the god in pre-exilic Judaism, created both good and evil, as stated in Isaiah 45:7: “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.” The Devil did not exist in early Jewish scriptures.

     
    Article: Wikipedia – Satan

    A figure known as “the satan” first appears in the Tanakh as a heavenly prosecutor, a member of the sons of God subordinate to Yahweh, who prosecutes the nation of Judah in the heavenly court and tests the loyalty of Yahweh’s followers by forcing them to suffer. During the intertestamental period […], the satan developed into a malevolent entity with abhorrent qualities in dualistic opposition to God.
    […]
    During the Second Temple Period, when Jews were living in the Achaemenid Empire, Judaism was heavily influenced by Zoroastrianism, the religion of the Achaemenids.
    […]
    The idea of Satan as an opponent of God and a purely evil figure seems to have taken root in Jewish pseudepigrapha […], particularly in the apocalypses.
     
    The Book of Enoch, which the Dead Sea Scrolls have revealed to have been nearly as popular as the Torah, describes a group of 200 angels known as the “Watchers”, who are assigned to supervise the earth, but instead abandon their duties and have sexual intercourse with human women [and spread] sin and corruption among humankind. The Watchers are ultimately sequestered in isolated caves across the earth and are condemned to face judgement at the end of time.
     
    The Book of Jubilees, written in around 150 BC, retells the story of the Watchers’ defeat, but, in deviation from the Book of Enoch, Mastema, the “Chief of Spirits”, intervenes before all of their demon offspring are sealed away, requesting for Yahweh to let him keep some of them to become his workers. Yahweh acquiesces this request and Mastema uses them to tempt humans into committing more sins, so that he may punish them for their wickedness.

  55. says

    @Larper #59 I don’t speak about claptrap, but rather the science relative to these topics, but to put your bet to rest: No, because I don’t speak about claptrap. Was it about the science? No.

  56. RationalismRules says

    @nemoeac #63

    I apologize to the members here if this post is inappropriate

    Satirizing Xtianity ‘inappropriate’ on this site? No, I don’t think you’ve got any worries there.
     
    A couple of thoughts from your post:

    a. Have you been watching The Good Place, by any chance?

    b. The origin of Satan is a significant problem for Xtianity IMO. If Lucifer was originally an angel, and created by the creator god, then the negative traits that ultimately led to its fall and transformation into Satan (ie. pride, envy, lust for power) must have been imbued in it by that god. If, on the other hand, Lucifer was not created by the god a whole other set of problems arises, starting with the god not being the only eternal being, and not being the creator of everything

    c. Loosely related to your theme (ie. the ‘what if it’s all backwards?’ idea) I had an epiphany about heaven a while back. If there is a heaven where god hangs out with humans for eternity, and there is a test to determine which humans are suitable, then it seems much more plausible to me that atheists will be the ones who ultimately get that ‘reward’.
    Here’s why:
    * The creator god gives humans a superior capacity for reasoning/cognition
    * The creator god plants a book that says “don’t think, just believe what this book says”
    * The creator god then hides, leaving no actual evidence of its existence
    * The creator god sits back and waits to see which humans will exercise the superior cognition/reasoning powers that it gave them, and which humans will favor superstition and credulity over reason.

    If you were a super intelligent entity who was making some intelligent companions to share eternity with, which would you choose, the ones who chose to make the best use the intelligence you gave them, or the ones who believed in any old shit because it ‘felt right’?

    To put it another way, would you want to spend even half an hour in the company of someone who buys Goop products, let alone an eternity?

    QED

  57. nemoeac says

    @Lamont Cranston
    @Ronald Kyle
    @Sky Captain
    @Rationalism Rules

    Mandela Effect???

    All 4 of you referenced my post as #63 but I see it as being #65. Is this an example of the Mandela Effect right here in our own forum? lol

    Thank you all for your replies. After posting it, I honestly thought I was going to get slammed for appearing to give credence to ancient fables or for attempting to inject some lame humour into what should be a more serious topic. I’m surprised and pleased to see that wasn’t the case at all!

    @RationalismRules:
    I’ve also considered the point you raise about the Bible being a test of sorts, designed to separate humanity into 2 camps based on gullibility. Then I tried to reason out why a God might want to make that distinction and I decided there were 2 main possibilities:
    1. Similar to your theory, it could be to determine (and reward) those who used all of God’s “gifts” (ie: reason, logic, rationality) to determine that belief was unwarranted, yet STILL chose to (overall) live a good and moral life. If this were true, then most Atheists would be rewarded and all theists would fail the test.
    2. But if #1 is not the case, then why would a God want to know who are the obedient and gullible within a population? My best guess is that this would only make sense if he were raising an army. The best soldiers are the ones who follow orders immediately and unquestioningly with the explanation “because I said so” being all they ever need! I have no idea who he’s going to fight with this army – so I tend to give more credence to #1 however “more” doesn’t mean “much”. (I really don’t think either of these are very likely to be the case – yet I still find it fun to think about sometimes.)

    @Sky Captain:
    Thank you for sharing all of that information. I’ll admit that I hadn’t looked any of it up prior to posting – and now I know more than I did before. It was interesting to read although if you were posting that info to make a specific point related to something I said or eluded to – I have to admit it went right over my head…

    @Lamont Cranston:
    You’re absolutely right. If we consider as fact that God is malevolent towards humanity – everything begins to make sense and I think the Bible fits perfectly with a malevolent intent!

    @Ronald Kyle:
    I enjoyed your humorous stories and I’m looking forward to reading the story you said you’ll share from the Talmud (which I admit I’ve never heard of but will try to google in the near future!)

  58. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @nemoeac #72:

    All 4 of you referenced my post as #63 but I see it as being #65.

    Posts that get held up in moderation (either first-time author or more than 3 links) do not immediately appear but remember their date. When approved, they are inserted into the thread, offsetting the indices of chronologically later posts.
     
    Your comment got bumped a couple times after we responded to you.
     

    if you were posting that info to make a specific point related to something I said

    No, nothing you said. I just saw a misleading statement in the thread and wanted to ensure accurate info was present. Syncretism’s the word: religions rubbing off on each other. I addressed it to you since you were the inviting responses and seemed most interested.

  59. RationalismRules says

    @nemoeac
    Can’t really think of any reason a maximally powerful god would need an army of incredibly weak (by god standards) humans. Except perhaps for entertainment.

    Then again, I also can’t see why an omniscient god would need a test to see which humans were suited for heaven. I mean, it should already know, shouldn’t it, if it’s omniscient?

    I don’t give any credence to any of it, I just like the irony that if there were a test, as many religions advocate, it makes more logical sense that the test is using the exact opposite criteria from that stated.
     
    I recommend The Good Place, if you haven’t already seen it. It’s a fun take on the good/bad afterlife concept. I’m enjoying it a lot.

  60. Ronald Kyle says

    @#72 nemoeac says

    looking forward to reading the story you said you’ll share from the Talmud

    Notice in the below story how God CHEATS on behalf of Adam… also how God LIES about Adam having more wisdom than Satan.
     
    From here: The Legends of the Jews
     
    THE FALL OF SATAN
    The extraordinary qualities with which Adam was blessed, physical and spiritual as well, aroused the envy of the angels. They attempted to consume him with fire, and he would have perished, had not the protecting hand of God rested upon him, and established peace between him and the heavenly host.
     
    In particular, Satan was jealous of the first man, and his evil thoughts finally led to his fall. After Adam had been endowed with a soul, God invited all the angels to come and pay him reverence and homage.
     
    Satan, the greatest of the angels in heaven, with twelve wings, instead of six like all the others, refused to pay heed to the behest of God, saying, “Thou didst create us angels from the splendor of the Shekinah, and now Thou dost command us to cast ourselves down before the creature which Thou didst fashion out of the dust of the ground!” God answered, “Yet this dust of the ground has more wisdom and understanding than thou.”
     
    Satan demanded a trial of wit with Adam, and God assented thereto, saying: “I have created beasts, birds, and reptiles, I shall have them all come before thee and before Adam. If thou art able to give them names, I shall command Adam to show honor unto thee, and thou shalt rest next to the Shekinah of My glory. But if not, and Adam calls them by the names I have assigned to them, then thou wilt be subject to Adam, and he shall have a place in My garden, and cultivate it.”
    ….
    Now Satan attempted to assign names to the animals. He failed with the first two that presented themselves, the ox and the cow. God led two others before him, the camel and the donkey, with the same result.
     
    Then God turned to Adam, and questioned him regarding the names of the same animals, framing His questions in such wise that the first letter of the first word was the same as the first letter of the name of the animal standing before him. Thus Adam divined the proper name, and Satan was forced to acknowledge the superiority of the first man. Nevertheless he broke out in wild outcries that reached the heavens, and he refused to do homage unto Adam as he had been bidden.
     
    The host of angels led by him did likewise, in spite of the urgent representations of Michael, who was the first to prostrate himself before Adam in order to show a good example to the other angels. Michael addressed Satan: “Give adoration to the image of God! But if thou doest it not, then the Lord God will break out in wrath against thee.” Satan replied: “If He breaks out in wrath against me, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God, I will be like the Most High! “At once God flung Satan and his host out of heaven, down to the earth, and from that moment dates the enmity between Satan and man.’

  61. Ronald Kyle says

    @#72 nemoeac says

    My best guess is that this would only make sense if he were raising an army

    This is a clever speculation you just made… In Zorastrianism Ahoram Mazda needs that humanity become all “good believers in him” so that he can absorb their “good energy” and finally be able to defeat Ahriman Asha once and for all.
     
    Practices
    The religion states that active participation in life through good deeds is necessary to ensure happiness and to keep chaos at bayAhura Mazda will ultimately prevail over the evil Angra Mainyu or Ahriman, at which point the universe will undergo a cosmic renovation and time will end. In the final renovation, all of creation—even the souls of the dead that were initially banished to “darkness”—will be reunited in Ahura Mazda, returning to life in the undead form. At the end of time, a savior-figure (a Saoshyant) will bring about a final renovation of the world (frashokereti), in which the dead will be revived.
     
    In Zoroastrian tradition, life is a temporary state in which a mortal is expected to actively participate in the continuing battle between truth and falsehood…

  62. Ronald Kyle says

    @#74 RationalismRules says

    Except perhaps for entertainment.

    Some may ask “why doesn’t god just destroy Satan?”
     
    The answer is very simple… why is it that in a series like say Heroes, where there is one of them that can time travel and stop time, why does he not time travel to the point where the Arch Nemesis still does not have any powers and just kill him???
     
    Or in some movies where the baddies chase the hero for minutes trying to kill him with hails of bullets and grenades and had they succeeded he would have been dead… but… when they catch him… instead of just immediately putting a bullet in his head like they would have done had any of the bullets of the barrage of bullets managed to find its mark… they instead put him in some elaborate contraption after having told him all their secrets… and of course he escapes but now knowing all the secrets to better defeat them.
     
    The answer is… if they did that the movie would be extremely short and a boring one indeed.
     
    Every fairy tale must have the Arch Nemesis and the Hero and the hero has to undergo trials where the arch memesis must strain and hamper the development of the hero to the extreme and then the hero eventually triumphs and prevails and emerges out of the ordeals thrust upon him METAMORPHOSED like a butterfly out of a CHRYSALIS.
     
    It is all Literary Artifices since time immemorial used by poets and myth-makers to entertain if they are honest or to DUPE and BAMBOOZLE if they are charlatans and brigands.
     
    Today we have thousands of these literary artifices being used in Hollywood in serial-movies and TV-series to entertain but also to keep people forking out their subscriptions and box office payments.
     
    For example notice how in the serial-movies the Arch Nemesis never can be killed… his minions are falling around him like flies and the good guys around the Hero too are also dying off by the dozens… but somehow the Nemesis manages to escape the barrages of bullets and explosions… and so does the hero too… but all the secondary persons keep dying by the dozens.
     
    And even if the nemesis is injured at the end of the first or second or third one in the serial movies, he still manages to emerge alive ready for the next installment of the series or the next season.
     
    The people who wrote the fairy tales of the Buybull were just as adept and WILY as the writers working in Hollywood and Fox Entertainment Corporation today… and they wrote the fairy tales of the Buybull for the very same reason the writers of today write their stuff… to earn a living for themselves and their benefactors using their skills at myth-making.
     

    Exodus 30:11-16 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, When thou takest the sum of the children of Israel after their number, then shall they give every man a ransom for his soul unto the LORD, when thou numberest them; that there be no plague among them, when thou numberest them. This they shall give, every one that passeth among them that are numbered, half a shekel after the shekel of the sanctuary: (a shekel is twenty gerahs) an half shekel shall be the offering of the LORD. Every one that passeth among them that are numbered, from twenty years old and above, shall give an offering unto the LORD. The rich shall not give more, and the poor shall not give less than half a shekel, when they give an offering unto the LORD, to make an atonement for your souls. And thou shalt take the atonement money of the children of Israel, and shalt appoint it for the service of the tabernacle of the congregation; that it may be a memorial unto the children of Israel before the LORD, to make an atonement for your souls.

  63. Ronald Kyle says

    @#72 nemoeac says
     

    It was interesting to read although if you were posting that info to make a specific point

    Some people think that Judaism existed since the mythical Moses. And that YHWH was really the god of the mythical Jacob and Judaism really his religion and that of his mythical 12 children and their impossible descendants.
     
    Even some educated people who should know better think that Judaism has always been a monolithic homogeneous monotheism since the alleged dating of the writing of the fairy tales… and they think the writing was done by Moses despite their acknowledgement of the fact that Moses never existed.
     
    Of course reality, science, biology, sociology, anthropology, economics, linguistics, real history, real archaeology, sanity and logic belie the fables and whatever inculcated, indoctrinated mythology they have instilled in the minds of the poor victims of the longest running hoax ever devised.
     
    When one wants to teach calculus to a 10th grader one relies on the fact that the 10th grader has had a good education in Mathematics, Geometry, Algebra, Trigonometry, etc.
     
    Explaining calculus to a 10th grader who had NO foundation at all is still easier than explaining it to one who has had an utterly WRONG education where the above topics were totally mangled and misrepresented.
     
    Trying to explain the real facts about Judaism’s evolution and the true history of how Rabbinical Judaism with all its numerous variations and sects came about, runs into the same difficulties and prejudices and animosities and denials and resistance and benightedness and inculcated misinformation as trying to explain The FACTS Of Evolution and evolutionary biology to the products of the most fundamentalist Yeshivas, Seminaries, and Madrasas.
     
    I can explain how the Judaisms we have today are really just evolved variations upon Zoroastrianism just like say Mormonism is a variation upon Christianities or indeed Christianities or Islams upon the Judaisms that preceded them. I can also explain how Zerubbabel and Ezra and Nehemiah and Judas Maccabeus and Paul and Muhammad and King Henry VIII and John Wesley and Charles Russel etc. etc. etc. have a lot in common…. However, it is evident that I’ll have a lot less annoying things to do with my time than to wrangle with vicious benighted apologists for their myths who are just as tenacious and indefatigable and nasty as the ones who deny evolutionary science.

  64. says

    Quick question about attempting to validate (or, more likely, to invalidate) a prophecy:

    Matt, when you “prophesied” to Holy Rebel that you were going to hang up on him in 10 seconds in order to demonstrate the illegitimacy of his prophesies, do you think a prophecy in which you have reasonable control of making said prophecy come to pass is different than a prophecy that doesn’t involve your intervention? If I have the ability to make something come to pass, then telling someone it’s going to happen doesn’t seem like a prophecy at all, vs. a prophecy where I make a prediction that is reasonably out of my control to fulfill.

  65. Sergio Viula says

    Hi, Matt and Staff.

    Just dropping a few lines to say that I love your show and I spend hours watching old episodes.

    I’m Brazilian, from Rio. I’ve been an atheist for about 18 years, although it took me the first two years of this period to really say that. Anyway, for the last 16 years I’ve spoken and written about it in Portuguese, our language in Brazil.

    I used to be a Baptist pastor. Imagine how hard it was to make that shift. I struggled to prevent myself from becoming a non-believer, but the lack of evidence of God’s existance — and consquently of everything else related to him — spoke loudly enough not to be heard.

    Thank you for the great job you’ve been doing for so many years. Although I’ve come to be a spectator of the show just recently, your voice has echoed all over the world and can your programs can be re-visited any time thanks to your own channels and to several of your fans’ personal channels all over the Internet.

    A big thanks!

    Keep up with the good work!

    Wholeheartedly,

    Sergio Viula

  66. Ronald Kyle says

    @#79 Micah says

    a prophecy in which you have reasonable control of making said prophecy come to pass

    That is EXACTLY what the buybull prophecies are… the fabricators of the fairy tales had all the control over how the story pans out… especially when some of the hoaxers were writing about events that happened in their past while pretending that the narrators of the fables were guys who lived long before the events occurred.
     

    Are you familiar with the “fulfilled prophecy” about Oedipus the Greek king of Thebes who was a tragic hero mentioned in Greek SCRIPTURES? He fulfilled a prophecy that he would end up killing his father and marrying his mother, thereby bringing disaster to his city and family.
     
    Do you think that the above prophecy of the Greek Religious SCRIPTURES is a true fulfilled prophecy?
     
    If not then why not? Why do you think that the Buybull’s MYTHOLOGY is any different from all the other mythologies from the OODLES of religions and gods and scriptures that have been devised throughout the chronicles of human folly and benightedness????
     
    Could it be because you were inculcated and indoctrinated and acculturated and socialized and brainwashed into believing that the Buybull is not fairy tales and lies???
     

    Also have you ever heard about a Self-fulfilling “prophecy”? A positive or negative prophecy, strongly held belief, or delusion—declared as truth when it is actually false—may sufficiently influence people so that their reactions ultimately fulfill the once-false prophecy.
     
    The self-fulfilling prophecy is, in the beginning, a false definition of the situation evoking a new behavior which makes the original false conception come true. This specious validity of the self-fulfilling prophecy perpetuates a reign of error. For the prophet will cite the actual course of events as proof that he was right from the very beginning.

  67. RationalismRules says

    @Micah #79
    Matt is making the point that some of the things that are claimed to be ‘fulfilled prophecy’ are brought about by people working to fulfill the prophecy after the prophecy is known. In this case he’s taking it to the absurd extreme of prophesying about his own actions and then acting to fulfill his own prophecy. It’s a kind of reductio ad absurdum.

  68. dontpanicdent says

    @Kafei #57 & #70, Monocle Smile #58 and larpar #61

    UPDATE: Just thought you’d all like to know what comment of Kafei’s Shelley actually liked, so I went looking for it via Kafei’s link and discovered something amazing. Among the 1700 or so posts (I felt like I was SkyCaptain) I found it. but it turns out Kafei edited the post after Shelley had liked it in order to create some inane campaign to advance a notion that Shelley’s really a theist. After a long back and forth with Mindaugas, where Kafei also claimed to have had a discussion with Shelley herself about the studies involving psilocybin and CME’s and that they’re evidence for the existence of God, Shelley responded with a post of her own:

    Shelley Segal
    3 months ago
    @Mindaugas Minde @kafei
    Hi everyone,
    Just saw this correspondence. I really appreciate you having a disagreement so civilly on my page. Mindaugas is correct, I am an atheist, that’s what this song is about and I have not changed my mind. Even if I had (which I haven’t as I see no evidence for any god concepts I’ve been presented with – especially not the personal abrahamic god of the old testament) the song would not make sense from the inverse position…

    Shelley’s response effectively ended the thread and Kafei stopped posting.

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