Oprah

transparentsomersaults submitted:

In response to your youtube comment, I agree that science is profound in it’s design.  I don’t agree that it just occurred without an objective, if we ourselves, value reason. 

I agree with Oprah in that we have confined God outside of science and by the tenets of religiousity.

FA:
What youtube comment? That being said, the universe does not owe us purpose, nor does it require an objective. Why do you assume it has to? No one has confined god to anything. It is not scientific religiosity (an oxymoron of course) that confines god, it is the fact that there is no evidence such a being exists in the first place. God, any god, is welcomed to make his/her/its presence apparent. Just like science is. Just like the universe is. Just like this post is. Is that too much to ask from a “god”?

This is a question that demands an answer if we ourselves value reason.

In reason:
-FA

interested in your opinion on this?

This is what happens when the superstitious try to tell atheists what atheism is. Hilarity always ensues.Science demonstrates that what we label as “intelligence” is nothing more than the current end product of a long evolutionary process. He would need to demonstrate how his “intelligent source” came to be apart from an evolutionary process, the only one we know that produces “intelligence”. Anything less than this is pure speculation, which Mr. Chopra is really adept at asserting as truth.
Plus, if he were to believe that his “intelligent source” did actually evolve, why would anyone call it god? As an atheist I will reserve my belief until evidence is shown. Unlike Mr. Chopra, i’m not inclined to label my ignorance ”god”.
To me it is still a mystery why people waste their time listening to this person…In reason:-FA

interested in your opinion on this?

This is what happens when the superstitious try to tell atheists what atheism is. Hilarity always ensues.

Science demonstrates that what we label as “intelligence” is nothing more than the current end product of a long evolutionary process. He would need to demonstrate how his “intelligent source” came to be apart from an evolutionary process, the only one we know that produces “intelligence”. Anything less than this is pure speculation, which Mr. Chopra is really adept at asserting as truth.

Plus, if he were to believe that his “intelligent source” did actually evolve, why would anyone call it god? As an atheist I will reserve my belief until evidence is shown. Unlike Mr. Chopra, i’m not inclined to label my ignorance ”god”.

To me it is still a mystery why people waste their time listening to this person…

In reason:
-FA

fdfrem submitted the following. My comments in block quote.
-FA 

Ok this will be fun in my opinion.

It always is.

I’ve read some of your posts and while I find some of them downright offensive to religious people (though I’m not one, not really) others were pretty fun. First of all, people should have a right to believe in anything, practice or do whatever they want to do with their lives as long as they don’t cause grief for others, I hope we can agree on that otherwise I’ll have to acknowledge you as a bigot and a fascist ^^.

Read the FAQ. I agree that people have the right to believe whatever they want in the same way that others have the right to criticize and not agree with said beliefs. To even hint that I am a bigot or a racist is to accuse others falsely. A cursory reading of the FAQ shows as much.

I don’t like most religious people either, but that’s because they are radicals, just like you with your atheism :)

I actually love most religious people. My family is religious and they are not radicals. Am I a radical just because I don’t agree with religious superstition and I have a tumblr that says as much? Is that being “radical”? I suggest you review your off base understanding of what radical is. Violently attacking embassies and killing innocent people because a crappy movie offended your religious sensibilities IS radicalism. Giving my opinion on a website is just free speech. So much is obvious to any honest, logical person.

Being a radical, for whatever purpose, distorts your logic to the extreme and makes you reject anyone else’s logic. That’s what’s exactly wrong with today’s world in my opinion. Everyone knows best! (So do I, I guess, by stating this in such strong manner:) ).

There is no such thing as “personal logic”. I don’t even know what that is supposed to mean. Either beliefs have evidence to support them or not. Simple as that. If it were otherwise there would not be a need for mental asylums. Beliefs are not true just because you have them. 

Let’s not deviate from the subject. You keep talking about proofs and disproving and science when you want to control the subject of “God”.

At this point this sounds like a copy paste from somewhere. I will google later to confirm. Is so generic that for all its many words it actually says nothing. For example, what does “disproving science” means? I have no idea but apparently I keep talking about it. LOL!! What does “control the subject of god” mean? I don’t know but apparently that is my purpose. :-D 
LOL x 2!!! 

I’m a scientist myself and I’ve studied Mathematics as my major and now I’m a Game Theorist. As a person immersed in so much theoretical discussions I can easily point out that most of the theorems have some suppositions in them and they can only be proved through these suppositions. And any proposition can be considered valid if you cannot disprove it. Note that I’m saying valid, not true, it has the possibility of being true but it’s not necessarily so.

Believers see their god as a real being that acts, wills, creates and it is interested in every single detail of their live. They do not see their god as a mathematical equation. Fact is that things are not true because they cannot be disproved. Can you disprove the flying spaghetti monster? How about the invisible pink unicorn? Can you disprove Thor, Zeus, or the invisible fairies at the bottom of the lake? Of course not. To assume that anything is real just because it cannot be disproved is asinine to the extreme. Anything and everything must be real and there would not be a difference between reality and imagination. It goes without saying that even a child knows this is not the case.

Things are true when there is evidence to support it. Not before. That is how reality works. Period. 

Also proving and disproving are only words that can be used with any context. For example: Can you disprove that God exists? Can you prove that God does not exist?

No one can disprove that which does not exist. Simple. Is this your best argument? Really?

Both mean the same thing, so using arguments like proving and disproving does not really help the subject when it’s a matter of belief and again people should be allowed to believe in whatever they want as long as yada yada…

They actually do help. I have written this post on tumblr. The fact that you can read it is proof that I did. You can ask others to read it and they will agree.

The same thing cannot be said of god. As a matter of fact this post has more evidence in its favor than belief in god has ever had.

People can believe what they want. Others can criticize them as they wish. Even more so when there is no evidence to support those beliefs. Simple as that.

Moving on, I do believe that there is a higher power in the universe. Because when I think about the vastness of the universe, I believe that it must have been created by something for some purpose. Hence, coincidence is not good enough for me :)

I am not so self conceited to assume there has to be any purpose for the universe. I make my own purpose. The universe does not owe you or me any purpose. I don’t assume anything nor do I prejudge it based on my puny opinions. Reality is what it is with my opinion or without it. You don’t like coincidence? Too bad. It might all be a big coincidence. The universe does not care how you feel about it. The cosmos just is.

When approaching the subject as a Game Theorist I can give you this model:

ZZZzzzzz….

Consider that there are 2 options you can choose from: Believing in God or not believing in God. There are also 2 possible situations: God either exists or not. Now you have a game with 4 outcomes: Believe in God and God Exists, Believe in God and God does not Exist, Don’t believe in God and God Exists, Don’t Believe in God and God does not Exist. Out of these 4 outcomes you have 4 different values of utility (profits if you want). Let’s call them A, B, C and D respectively. It is clear that D > A > B »> C for most people (unless you like burning in hell and C takes precedence :) ). Now let’s assume the probability that God exists is “p” and “p” is a very small non-zero value. Now both of your choices have the following values: A*p + B*(1-p) and C*p + D*(1-p). A little bit of mathematical knowledge show that the first group’s value is much higher than the second group’s value (as C is probably close to negative infinity for most people’s ordinary preferences).

Blah, blah, blah. Pascal’s Wager with numbers. How boring. And lame. And easy to disprove. I won’t waste my time commenting on it when it has already been done here.

Hence: it’s logical in a game theoretic sense to believe in God :)

Actually the opposite is true.

This is of course not a proof that God exist but a way to end the debate using scientific methods :)

Again, there is no way of proving that which does not exist. I do agree there is no debate. Fact is there is no evidence in favor of a god existing so the debate exists only in the minds of those who decide to avoid reality in favor of personal like, opinion and self centeredness.

Good luck in your crusade :)

Thanks but no thanks. I don’t embark on crusades, much less when we look back and remember the results of such by christians in the middle ages.

Peace!

In reason:
-FA 

bradjunswick submitted:

I think it would be good to promote this petition to get the US government to speak up for Alexander Aan, an Indonesian who is in prison because he publicly admitted to doubting the existence of god. Your tumblr gets a lot of attention here, so this may help get more signatures. There isn’t even close to the required number of signatories yet, and there is only about a week left until the petition expires. 

Wow. How sad. The government of the USA should speak on behalf of those whose basic freedoms are denied. Atheists included.

-FA

PD:
I have no idea how much attention this tumblr gets, I can only hope it helps even if it is just a little. Thanks for bringing this situation up.

Something my husband wrote on my facebook that I’m proud of, but can’t have it on my facebook because I’m not brave enough.

  • Everytime I hear someone give the reason to be religious is that “Not everything can be explained by science” I lose faith in humanity a little more.

    That is the point of life. To take the unexplainable, and find a scientific or rational explanation for it. Thousands of years ago, people explained the sun revolved around the earth because some god made it so. Through Science, and observation, this was proved wrong. Hundreds of years ago, people believed that the earth was flat. Exploration, Science Observation proved otherwise.

    There is so much in this universe that has yet to be discovered, has yet to be explained. We are in a state of Social Adolescence. There is a small minority of people on this world who want to help advance the human race beyond wild superstitions, and there is a vast majority of the human race that just won’t grow up. Santa Clause, the Easter bunny, the Tooth fairy, Jesus, God, Jehovah, Allah, and Xenu (and the rest of the worlds gods) aren’t real. It is that majority that is holding us as a species back. It saddens me as a human race are doomed to extinction because we are too immature.

    When you have 22% of the American Population believing the world will end in our lifetime(more specifically in 2012) it disgusts me. Mainly because so many people either want to see it happen, or are trying to make it happen.

    No one knows about the universe. No one knows what happens when you die. Is there a heaven or a hell? No one knows. And if they say they know for a fact that there is either a heaven or a hell, they are fucking lying. The bible isn’t factual and anyone who fucking thinks so is a god damn moron who if the human race is anywhere near lucky enough will not reproduce and continue the chain of ignorance.

    The bible was written thousands of years about by a society that was in its infancy, beating, raping, killing, for no good reason. Back then, they needed to believe that if they did bad things, when they died bad things would happen to them. They needed to be told to stop fucking dudes because they didn’t know the importance of reproducing, they didn’t care. No one did. Now that were are in the 21 century, with media just suffocating us and our access to a wealth of knowledge is infinite, there shouldn’t be a god damn soul on this planet who would believe that god even exists, much lest did ANY miracle ever said in the bible.
    Then you get into all this other ethical crap, Like “If you don’t believe in heaven and hell, why don’t you just go on a rampage and kill people(or do any other bad thing that would end you in hell otherwise)”

    Because I am a human being. I may not believe in god, but I do sometimes actually have faith in my fellow human being. I don’t do something bad to other people/objects, because I wouldn’t want some douchebag coming up to me and doing similar evil-ish things. It is called respect.

    And I am not only an atheist, but I am also Anti-religion. While I believe it is your right to believe whatever the hell you want, the second you beliefs encroach on my life, is the second you lose such rights.

    Like this one D-bag trying to convert me from my atheist ways. Telling me that if I have ever lusted for a woman, I am an adulterer, If I have ever thought about killing a man, I am a murderer. And that Jesus died for my sins so I wouldn’t be punished for thinking said things, or some other bullshit. I kind of just tuned him out after he called a murderer.

    Seriously, who believes that kind of shit. Who would ever argue in favor of god. I mean think about it. Think about god, and his magnificence, and how he created medicines, and cures, and all these magnificent breakthroughs. Think about how he created the iPad and the telephone, and the car. It doesn’t really seam that great. Just god helping us out and we can never understand these wonders because god made them, And we just pray to him because that is how we get more of these wonderful things.

    Now think about MANKIND. Man made ever since scientific breakthrough throughout our history. Man mad the cures, man made the medicine, he discovered the electricity that powers your computer know that you are reading this on. Mankind created the cars that get you to work, and even the jobs so you have some way to make money.

    That is the true, awe inspiring story of mankind. That those of use who wouldn’t except “God did it”, or “Because it says so in the bible” as an answer, and through the discrimination, through the witch hunts of all the atheists, We did something no religious man could have done. We changed the world. And it is my hope that the religious zealots will eventually fade away with their nonsensical delusions, and stop being afraid of the real questions in life. “Why are we here?”, “Where are we going?” and the only way to get true answers, is to open your mind, scrape out all that religious nonsense, and observe the world, and make up your own mind. Conduct some experiments. Read a real book by people who did conduct experiments. Learn about the world around us.
      And know that, whatever you believe in, especially what you believe in about death and heaven and hell, it doesn’t matter. It is your mark on this world and what you leave behind for future generations that really matters. So make it a good one.

    Submitted by eruditewitch. 

When I was in high school, I had a lot of family problems. I was diagnoses with clinical depression at 14, and I struggled with it for many years, including thoughts about suicide. My family had been very religious, and at that point so was I. I felt broken, as if I must be doing something wrong to struggle when there was a perfect god who created me. The guilt and the self-blame made everything worse.

I’m not sure if I can identify a specific turning point, but while I was in my first years at college I began to question and challenge my beliefs. After all, why would an all loving god put me through so much pain? And I wasnt the only one who was suffering.

My doubt turned to questioning, which led to exploring, and I found answers. Reality, science, logic. For me, atheism has been empowering. This is the only life I have, and with that knowledge I have been able to seek happiness and purpose. I have known so many religious people that claim that faith can restore you, but for me that wasn’t true. Loosing my faith is what has allowed me to become who I am today. A whole person.

Thank you for letting me share this with you.

K

re: where do souls come from…

Some religions have a solution to this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_guf

Says its from Jewish mysticism but I remember talk of it, or something like it, in my Catholic school (around the time I started to question everything).

Well this does not solve the reincarnation issue but that being said, where do the souls from the guf came from in the first place? One of the things that makes myth and superstition is so interesting is that a religious nonsensical concept always necessitates an even more nonsensical concept to “explain” it. And it never does.

-FA

A 100% college attendance rate SHOULDN’T happen.

http://greyjing.tumblr.com/post/18463453122/th-cox-mattachinereview-martyrtotheswag

Fact #1: Going to college does not make you a snob, much less hoping more people did.

Fact#2: Technology advances. The working class of the next generation, if it is to be successful, will need new skills. The type you don’t get outside of an academic environment. In the same way that those who did not adapt when the industrial revolution happened were left behind those that who do not adapt to the information revolution will suffer the same fate.

Fact#3: By that same logic, should we not strive to achieve a 100% high school attendance? How about middle school? Primary? U make no sense.

Fact#4: Obama was not only referring to 4 year degrees btw.

Fact#5: No one said that not going to college makes you pitable. It will though, most likely, make you poorer than you would have been otherwise. (See Lifetime Earnings Soar with Education. Masters degree worth $2.5 million income over a lifetime here.)

I could enumerate more facts but I’m tired. As a college educated snob I don’t have any more time for this.

-FA

cisethnic submitted:

im submitting this so theres no character cap.

My responses in quote.
-FA

1) (from dictionary.com here) “doctrine: a particular principle, position, or policy taught or advocated”

atheists generally hold all different beliefs but one is in common and has to be in order to be an atheist, and that is the belief that, without a doubt, there is no god-

Some atheists describe themselves as strong atheists. Belief that there is no god. These are the extreme minority since such a position is logically unsustainable.  Did you even care to read my previous post? Obviously not. Below is the common definition of atheism. You can’t make an exception the rule. Simple as that. Atheism requires absolutely NO belief. Much less dogma or doctrine. Things you failed to mention since there are NONE.

From merriam-webster.com (bold is mine):

ATHEISM

a : a disbelief in the existence of deity

agnostics do not believe that there is no god nor do they believe that there is a god, agnosticism is to believe that a god is possible not that there is or is not one, it has nothing to do with knowledge, proof, or facts its a belief just like atheism or theism. 

Agnosticism says nothing about belief. It is about knowledge. Agnostic from the greek which means NO KNOWLEDGE. Google it.

(taken from skeptics dictionary here) “Agnosticism is the position of believing that knowledge of the existence or non-existence of god is impossible.

Exactly. A position about knowledge of god, not belief in one.

It is often put forth as a middle ground between theism and atheism. Understood this way, agnosticism is skepticism regarding all things theological. The agnostic holds that human knowledge is limited to the natural world, that the mind is incapable of knowledge of the supernatural.”

Well said. I am an agnostic. Also atheist. No problem. See my previous post for details.

being an agnostic theist or agnostic atheist is a stance however that is not the default stance 

A lack of belief is the default stance. Unless you believe in everything and anything without any knowledge of what those things actually are/are not. We have a word for these people: gullible.

an agnostic atheist/theist holds that there is no human knowledge to show the existence or nonexistence of a god but they still hold the bias that there is or is not a god 

False. I don’t carry any bias. If evidence of a god surfaces, I will be more than happy to believe. But till that day I reserve my belief in gods. Again, agnostic atheists has no knowledge of a god hence lacks a belief in it. Where is the bias in this?

id also like to add this quote from the same source because its ironically applicable and also seems to sum up my thoughts on the subject better than i could articulate

Finally, there is an argument, popular among some who fancy themselves intellectuals, that agnosticism is the only intellectually honest position to take with regard to gods. According to this viewpoint, theism and atheism are arrogant affirmations of being certain about something that is intrinsically unknowable. It is, of course, true that it is possible there is some unknowable being or entity who creates universes, has unimaginable powers, and is like nothing we have any experience of. No atheist that I know of has ever denied such a possibility, nor have we denied the possibility of an unknowable Easter Bunny who lays eggs on Saturn or any other imaginable epistemic improbability. So what? Atheists and theists do not concern themselves with epistemic improbabilities, but with gods about whom stories have been told for millennia.

A quick clarification, god is the most encompassing epistemic improbability anyone can assert. The only reason atheists have to contend with it is because results of believing in such affect everyone either they want it or not. How old the belief is has nothing to do with it. See points #1 to #4 in the FAQ for more details.

If a group of people would come today with a dogma based on the Easter Bunny and presented it as reality I can assure you atheists would also devote time to debunk, ridicule and address it. I bet theist would do too. They don’t allow religious competition (see the crusades, persecutions, beheadings all the nasty stuff that happens when one group of believers clashes with another group of believers).

The more we learn about the universe, the less reason there is for believing that any of these gods were not created by human imagination.

True.

Agnosticism regarding Zeus or Abraham’s god is not an intellectually honest position, as it can be maintained only by a fatuous and dishonest treatment of the available evidence.

True. And omnipotent god is an impossibility (would such a god create a rock so heavy he can’t lift himself?). It creates logical contradictions. Like how an all just god is incompatible with an all merciful one.

That evidence shows beyond a reasonable doubt that all gods fashioned thus far in the minds of men are highly improbable. Agnosticism regarding unimaginable, unknowable beings is redundant.”

Point is well taken. That being said, the word agnostic means literally “no knowledge”. That is why, as stated in my previous point, agnosticism is not a middle point between theism and atheism. Thanks for the quote as it supports my position quite nicely.

2) okay thanks for the information…

You’re welcomed. My pleasure.

3) i was referring to knowledge that would disprove that an outside influence was at work

i realize that there is no such thing as evidence of nonexistence-

Ok then. Thanks for conceding the point.

that was kind of the point but thanks for restating my conclusion 

LOL. Sure.

i would have made it plainer but it seemed to me to be obvious what i was saying about proof of nonexistence 

You might try to convert atheism into an assertive position only (belief there is no god) instead of what it actually is (lack of belief in any god) to the immense majority of people who describe themselves as atheists. At the end of the day such efforts are not only false but a really weak straw man. Not only is such a line of “reasoning” old it has been debunked to full extent.

In reason:
-FA