Friday, July 15, 2011

A Proof that the Christian God Does Not Exist

Christians are continually challenging the non-believer to prove that their god does not exist, and like to heckle non-believers on the matter because they say one would need to be omniscient in order to know that there is no god hiding somewhere in the universe.
For instance, one Christian recently commented on my blog:
For anybody to reject something they have not seen takes a lot of work. For example seraching the entire universe. Which they can not do.[sic]
This is not an isolated case. Other theistic apologists have employed essentially the same reasoning.
In an article titled Strategies for Dialoguing with Atheists, apologist Ron Rhodes makes the following statement:
Some atheists categorically state that there is no God, and all atheists, by definition, believe it. And yet, this assertion is logically indefensible. A person would have to be omniscient and omnipresent to be able to say from his own pool of knowledge that there is no God. Only someone who is capable of being in all places at the same time - with a perfect knowledge of all that is in the universe - can make such a statement based on the facts. To put it another way, a person would have to be God in order to say there is no God.
Reasoning like this ignores the broader context of theism, namely that the theist’s god is said to exist outside the universe, that it is not just some item existing within it, like a rock, an asteroid, or particle of dust. If an atheist had traveled the entire universe and found no god, the theist could easily say he was looking in the wrong place, for the theist says his god is infinite and not part of the material universe.

In fact, reasoning like this is really an admission that god-belief rests on one’s ignorance, for it is where one has no knowledge that the theist’s god is supposed to reside.

Even worse, given this kind of reasoning, one would have to have searched the entire universe to reject the notion of a square circle. In other words, anyone employing this type of reasoning to defend his god-belief, would – in order to be consistent – scoff at any thinker who rejects the notion that square circles exist. Since no one can travel the entire universe to be assured that there’s no square circle hiding behind some asteroid or quasar, or under a pebble on some moon in another galaxy, no one is justified in believing that square circles do not exist at all.
If any thinker disputes the analogy between his god and the notion of a square circle, let him try to defend his god-belief. Meanwhile, readers are invited to review my own exploration of this matter here: Gods and Square Circles.

Does the theist really believe that one needs to be omniscient in order to justifiably reject the claim tat square circles exist somewhere in the universe?
But the atheist need not worry about not being able to prove that the Christian’s god does not exist. I don’t see why such a proof cannot be available. Below I present one that theists will have a very difficult time overcoming:
Premise 1: That which is imaginary is not real.
Premise: 2: If something is not real, it does not actually exist.
Premise 3: If the god of Christianity is imaginary, then it is not real and therefore does not actually exist.
Premise 4: The god of Christianity is imaginary.
Conclusion: Therefore, the god of Christianity is not real and therefore does not actually exist.
Presumably the Christian will accept the first two premises. Most human beings, when confronted directly with the question, will typically acknowledge that there is in fact a fundamental distinction between what one imagines and what is real, and admit that something that one imagines does not actually exist.

The stories of fictional works like the Harry Potter series or Tolkien’s tales of Middle Earth, are rooted in their authors’ imaginations. No one really believes that the heroes and villains of these storybooks actually exist (or existed, as the case may be), and that the events that move their storylines along actually happened someplace. That’s because it is introspectively obvious to most individuals, by reference to the world we live in and deal with everyday, that the stories and characters in these fictional accounts are ultimately imaginary.
Premise 3 is most likely going to make many Christians uncomfortable just in contemplating it. Many individuals who invest themselves emotionally in a life centered around a god-belief are likely to resent any suggestion, even hypothetical, that the god they worship is imaginary. If this premise produces in the theist a noticeable attitude change, perhaps it’s because you’re getting close to the central nervous system of his god-belief. But it seems that any adult thinker, even if she happens to be Christian, should accept the truth of this premise, assuming they don’t have any qualms with the first two premises.

Subtle discomfort is not what one should expect when he presents premise 4 to theists. Rather vehement protest is most likely to result. And of course, the theist can be predicted to reply with something like “Prove it!” (as if he were going to accept any proof that his god is imaginary). At this point I would suggest that he review my blog The Imaginative Nature of Christian Theism, in which I provide no less than 13 points of evidence – any one of which is damning enough – to meet his counter-challenge.
(Incidentally, I had posted the blog entry linked just above, in reply to a theistic apologist who had complained that I did not “prove” that his god was imaginary. Since posting the “Mighty 13,” that apologist has not offered any response to my answer to his challenge. In fact, it was not long after this that this apologist’s own blog posted an announcement that its own comments policy had been significantly revised, and debates were no longer to be allowed there. Go figure.)

The soundness and reasonableness of my argument’s conclusion should be easy for anyone to digest, even for the Christian, so long as his commitment to the existence of the Christian god is not emotional in nature. If it turns out that the Christian god is in fact imaginary, then by virtue of this fact it is not real, and therefore it does not actually exist.

Christian apologists who want to object to my argument’s fourth premise, which states that the Christian god is imaginary in nature, are welcome to address the points of evidence that I have cited in support of this premise. Ultimately, there is a single question that any atheist who encounters a pushy apologist need pose. And that question is:
When I imagine your god, how is what I am imagining not imaginary?
Since we have no alternative to imagining the Christian god when believers tell us about it, this question is most appropriate, especially since we’re expected to believe that it is real. If theists think we have an alternative to imagining their god, what is that alternative, and how is it different from imagination?

Christian believers who have invested their psyches so deeply with the ambition to convert the world to their god-belief, have long ago passed the great divide between imagination and reality, such that they are unable consistently to distinguish between the two, especially when their god-belief is involved. But that’s why challenges such as the one I raise are so highly resented by theists, for it ‘heads ‘em off at the pass’, so to say, and slashes off their god-belief before it has a chance to take root. For anyone who is not already predisposed to believing that the imaginary is real, if his attention is called to the distinction between reality and imagination and he is explicitly reminded that the imaginary is not real, he’s not likely to accept claims about imaginary things as truth. On the contrary, he’s going to wonder about the content of the character of individuals who insist that something which they can only imagine is real.
The bottom line is that, whether or not atheists really have the burden of proof in the matter, it has been met in spades.

by Dawson Bethrick

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261 Comments:

Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson, Robert has expressed his desire for me to convert to atheism.

He even asked me to say a prayer.

Can you give me some links where I Could learn more about your religion.

Thanks

July 15, 2011 11:26 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

r_c321: “Dawson, Robert has expressed his desire for me to convert to atheism. He even asked me to say a prayer.”

What *exactly* did Robert say? I don’t care to comment on your caricature of what he stated. You should quote him verbatim if you want to ask others about what he stated.

Also, Robert is both willing and able to dialogue with you directly. So if you have a question for him, feel free to ask him directly. You can do it on my blog if you like.

r_c321: “Can you give me some links where I Could learn more about your religion.”

For one, my philosophy is not a religion. A religion is a primitive form of philosophy, a pre-rational, pre-scientific attempt to explain existence and the human condition which is rooted in the primacy of consciousness. My philosophy cannot be rightly classed as a religion because it is rational and scientific, and it is rooted explicitly and self-consciously on the primacy of existence.

Second, given the impression that you have thus far made and confirmed repeatedly in the comments section of my blog, I surmise that you probably are not genuinely interested in learning what Robert’s worldview or anyone else’s teaches, and may in fact not be very capable intellectually at this time in your life of such learning, given the attitude of childishness and proclivity towards evasion that you have consistently displayed here.

Now in my present blog I have repeated a question that I posed to you at least twice in the previous discussion. You stated that you had answered it, but I did not see your answer. My question is:

When I imagine your god, how is what I’m imagining not imaginary?

Can you repost your answer to this question here?

Also, you’ll see that I have referenced an earlier blog where I cite 13 points of evidence for certifying the conclusion that the Christian god is imaginary. So if you want proof that the god of Christianity is indeed imaginary, I have provided it.

Perhaps this is why you give us childishness and evasion instead of intellect and honesty in your dialogue here.

Regards,
Dawson

July 15, 2011 6:25 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

You said it yourself we have to be like children.
So, why are you critizing me for it.

Dawson, I find your post amusing. However, if you don't repent of your sin that you have committed against a Holy God and believe on the lord Jesus Christ. You will be one funny guy in utter darkness where the fire is never quenched and the worm does not die.

This is not a threat or a promise.
It's reality.

Since you have read the bible I know you are aware of this.

July 15, 2011 7:18 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Hi again, r_c321,

I just wanted to let you know, and perhaps you'll be somewhat pleased, that I now worship the omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient deity known as "Gosh." Perhaps you've heard of him.

Gosh considers phrases such as "dadgummit," "Gosh darn it," "jeez-louise," and "Doggonnit" as inappropriate. Use of these phrases may result in eternal punishment in a place called "Heck."

And if one is sent to "Heck," then one is said to be "Darned" -- and "darned for all eternity." To avoid being darned and sent to Heck, all one has to do is accept Gosh's son into one's heart. His name is "Judas Priest!" Once one accepts Judas Priest! into one's heart, then one is guided by a spirit called The Holy Moley.

Perhaps more later. Perhaps not.

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 7:42 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 15, 2011 7:48 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

r_c321 "
This is not a threat or a promise.
It's reality."

How can I distinguish that it is reality from what you might just be imagining. Take note, simply repeating the claim does not help matters.

July 15, 2011 7:49 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Good one, Ydemoc. I was listening to Judas Priest just the other day. From the Screaming for Vengeance album. Does that count? Am I now shaved from my skins?

______________

r_c321: “You said it yourself we have to be like children.”

They were not my words which commanded this. They were the words which the Christian bible attributes to Jesus. And you said I was misrepresenting what it stated (though you never explained how), and now you hide behind it to justify your behavior.

r_c321: “ So, why are you critizing me for it.”

I expect more from adults. I expect adults to put away childish things, like the childish attitude of a 14-year-old that Christians take on when they realize they have no chance in a debate with non-believers.

r_c321: “if you don't repent of your sin that you have committed against a Holy God and believe on the lord Jesus Christ. You will be one funny guy in utter darkness where the fire is never quenched and the worm does not die.”

More death threats, which is ultimately all the Christian has. He cannot answer straightforward questions about his primitive worldview. So he resorts to death threats.

Of course, one can always *imagine* that there is a supernatural being consumed in wrath waiting to dispatch one’s soul for all eternity to a realm of unrelenting torment. But this is imaginary! So again I must ask, when I imagine your god, its anger and the hell your religion hangs over the believer’s heads, how is what I’m imagining not imaginary?????????

r_c321: “This is not a threat or a promise. It's reality.”

It’s a fantasy that you use as a threat. Nothing more. You want me to be afraid, just as your worldview makes you afraid and feeds off your fear. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge” according to the Christian worldview (Prov. 1:7). Your worldview requires that one first be gripped with an irrational fear before he can have “knowledge” (so-called) and believe and “repent.” So a resort to threats is always imminent in apologetics.

The Christian doctrine grips you with fear because you’ve failed to distinguish between reality and imagination.

r_c321: “Since you have read the bible I know you are aware of this.”

Yes, I have read the bible, and I am aware of the threats it issues to those who get suckered into its devices. But where does the bible teach anything about concepts? You’ve cited two passages in this regard – namely Jeremiah 17:9 and Matthew 15:18-20 – but neither of them say anything about concepts. If you think they do, can you explain how?

It wouldn’t take very much to suppose that if the bible actually did discuss concepts, you’d have no problem citing the passages which address the issue. But you can’t, because it doesn’t discuss concepts at all. Its authors were mystical primitives who were clueless about how the mind actually works, which is why they were given over to confusing what they imagine with what is real. This confusion is found throughout their writings. Their concern was not to understand the mind, but to destroy it. And in the case of those who get suckered into it, they’ve done a good job: it reduces adults to the level of irresponsible children.

Regards,
Dawson

July 15, 2011 7:53 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Dawson wrote: ...Am I now shaved from my skins?

Now that is a funny tag to what I wrote! I was looking to put something like that in there, but I wasn't able to come up with anything. But you did!

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 8:00 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Dawson wrote: "I was listening to Judas Priest just the other day. From the Screaming for Vengeance album. Does that count?"

I'm sorry, Dawson, but that really doesn't count. Because, you see, you cannot avoid Heck through works. It is through faith that you are rewarded.

Also, there are many who come in Judas Priest's name, but they are nothing but false "profits."

Note: I could keep going, but perhaps that's enough.


Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 8:06 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321,

A quick question for you: As I understand it, if one blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, then that is considered an unforgivable sin, right?

But if the Holy Spirit is Jesus and God at the same time, and I blaspheme against God, aren't I also blaspheming against the Holy Spirit, too?

I'm confused.

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 8:15 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

@Ydemoc

that's easy to answer, its this this new funny kind of math, 3=1 except when you don't want it to.

July 15, 2011 8:29 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Justin wrote: "that's easy to answer, its this this new funny kind of math, 3=1 except when you don't want it to."

Yes, "fuzzy math."

Also, whenever I get into a discussion with a Christian about the Holy Spirit, and I ask them how they know, there answer invariably comes back, "I know because I know."

Yet they keep referring me to various apologetic books.

If they know because they know, why the need for any books at all?

In other words, the Christian did not know what he knew until his apologetic book was read (including the bible) and supplied the necessary inputs.


Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 8:40 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

God the father, God the Son, God the Holy spirit.
Are three different Persons. So, I am not sure what you are trying to ask me.

Dawson, have you ever prayed?

July 15, 2011 8:50 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321,

Hi, again.

r_c321 wrote: "God the father, God the Son, God the Holy spirit.
Are three different Persons. So, I am not sure what you are trying to ask me."


Let's start by asking: What is a "person"? Then let's ask how something can be A and not-A?

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 9:03 PM  
Blogger Nide Corniell said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 15, 2011 9:16 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

When I say That they are a person.
I mean they have emotions and intellect and a will.

Does a person have these 3 things?

Justin,

3 = 1 What kind of school did you go to?

July 15, 2011 9:19 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 said... "When I say That they are a person. I mean they have emotions and intellect and a will. Does a person have these 3 things?"

Yes, most probably do. But a "person" may also have green eyes, red hair, fear, ignorance, a sense of humor, the ability to laugh, etc.

The dictionary.com defines "person" as

per·son
   /ˈpɜrsən/ Show Spelled[pur-suhn] Show IPA
–noun
1. a human being, whether man, woman, or child: The table seats four persons.
2. a human being as distinguished from an animal or a thing.
3. Sociology . an individual human being, especially with reference to his or her social relationships and behavioral patterns as conditioned by the culture.

Do you quibble with this definition? Are God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit all human beings? Is the Trinity really man, woman, and child?

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 9:41 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

"3 = 1 What kind of school did you go to?"

One consistent observation I have made thru the years is that authoritarians have no sense of humour.

r_c321 as you indicated in the earlier post that you can not convince me of gods existence, your words. Then I have to ask, what is it that you hope to achieve here, what is your goal. If obviously is not reasoned debate, so what is it?

July 15, 2011 9:58 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Justin,

Justin wrote: "r_c321 as you indicated in the earlier post that you can not convince me of gods existence, your words. Then I have to ask, what is it that you hope to achieve here, what is your goal. If obviously is not reasoned debate, so what is it?"

If I may? From my observations his goals break down as follows:

70% Witnessing to satisfy his religious obligation

20% Heckling, for the fun of it

7% Curiosity

3% Engaging in reasoned debate so as to sharpen his apologetic skills for future atheist exchanges

Am I being too generous in certain areas of my assessment?

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 10:08 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I see that r_c321 “accidentally” signed in as Nide Corniell again. I wonder if Nide knows about this.

Nide has a blog of his own. Here is the link: Inspiration Is Key

One of his posts, titledAiming to be like God…, Nide states the following:

"Aim to be like those who have inspired the ones you admire...
Therefore if you continue on this journey...
Sooner or later you'll find yourself aiming to be like God..."


I’ve pointed out on several occasions before, that believers who seek to defend their god-belief often end up confusing themselves with the god they are trying to argue into existence. It’s just a natural manifestation of the fact that gods are imaginary: believers eventually give away the game when they take their self-appointed station as spokesmen for their god a bit too far, and let on that their god is so much a part of their own personality that it resembles their own character. We all know who’s ultimately driving the bus here, and it’s not a supernatural being.

In response to Justin, r_c321 asked:

"3 = 1 What kind of school did you go to?"

Perhaps it was Sunday school. That's where I've heard such teachings.

In response to Ydemoc, r_c321 wrote: “When I say That they are a person. I mean they have emotions and intellect and a will.”

As Ydemoc rightly pointed out, the standard dictionary definition explicitly associates personhood with humanity. To be a person is to be a person. Of course, we can project human characteristics into a fictional context, but that’s a work of fiction. Christians need to tell us how we can distinguish their god from something that is a fictional invention of their own imaginations.

Let me ask you, r_c321: your statements about the doctrine of the trinity suggest that you fully understand it. In fact, you come across as though you thought there should be no question about its meaning, truth or coherence. Is that true? Am I reading you correctly? Do you fully understand the doctrine of the trinity?

Regards,
Dawson

July 15, 2011 10:11 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

You have read the bible did you find a scripture that made this claim?

At that point the word person has a theological sense.
As Some dictionaries recognize but you seem to ignore it.



Ydemoc, if atheist really believe the bible is false
why do they interact with it. Why not just ignore it?

July 15, 2011 10:17 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

r_c321 asked: "if atheist really believe the bible is false
why do they interact with it. Why not just ignore it?"

Questions like this lead me to think that the one posing it is just completely at wit's end, his body hanging limp on the ropes, exhausted and with no fight left in him.

One does not need to suppose that the material with which he interacts is true, in order to interact with it. Typically people critique views that they think are defective in some way. If Greg Bahnsen thought that Bertrand Russell's views were false, why did he interact with them? "Why no just ignore" them? Earlier r_c321 (or Nide?) suggested that Bahnsen was seeking to expose the foolishness of Russell's ideas. There's your answer: non-believers who critique the bible are simply seeking to expose the foolishness within it.

As for the claim that "some dictionaries recognize" the "theological sense" of the word "person," I haven't seen one, unless of course you mean a specifically theological source. But that's to be expected: theological sources will revise defiitions for expediency's sake, to fit their religious program. But where's the argument for why one should accept such sources as authoritative, especially when they're put out by men who are just as fallible as those who put out secular dictionaries?

Regards,
Dawson

July 15, 2011 10:32 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson, it amazes me that all of a sudden you want to appeal to a dictionary. I remember before you ran and got your philosophy book. To try and explain away the abstractness of good.

This is classic atheist behavior.

Nide is a relative. He is not a Christian.

Dawson, talking about childish. You give a link to his blog.
Which is kind of ridiculous. You angry Dawson?
Did I hurt your feelings?

atheist don't cry.

July 15, 2011 10:35 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

I see you again refuse to answer a simple question, but then turn it on it head and ask it right back, this behaviour is universally considered rude, you know something like an internet troll

"Ydemoc, if atheist really believe the bible is false
why do they interact with it. Why not just ignore it?"

I however will do the courtesy of answering. I would say because unlike some other religions that come to mind, such as Buddhism and Daoism or even Judaism, that for the most part don't going trying to force there religion on me, Christians do, and clearly state there goal as such. In short they are not good neighbours, they don't mind there own business. Also on a second point, for many of us, it is simply astounding that full grown adults actually believe it. We feel that you need help and thus we try by providing criticisms of the bible. An attempt to show a reason/logic using mind that it is nonsense. And of course we so often fail because the very person is not a reason/logic using individual.

Now could you return the favour and answer what you hope to achieve here? Because I don't see what you can or would do. You say only the holy spirit can convince me to believe in god and I say only reasoned argument can achieve this.

It could be you just want to now discuss seeming or real bible contradictions with Dawson and that's fine tho I really have no interest in that. I find it premature at this point, I still want to know if the bible is an authority or not. So how is a man who only uses reason to acquire knowledge of god?

ok sorry really two questions.

July 15, 2011 10:40 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_321 wrote: "You have read the bible did you find a scripture that made this claim?"

What claim are you referring to? I don't recall making a claim. Did I claim something?

r_321 wrote: "At that point the word person has a theological sense.
As Some dictionaries recognize but you seem to ignore it."

I see. So the concept "person" was in existence prior to it being theologically co-opted. Interesting.

r_321 wrote: "Ydemoc, if atheist really believe the bible is false
why do they interact with it. Why not just ignore it?"

Actually, calling the bible "false" is being charitable. When you get right down to it, I don't even see how it, as a whole, can even sit at the same table with the concepts "true" or "false." As a whole, it stands for the "arbitrary."

As far as why interact with it and not just ignore it? Because reality is too important. Because life is too valuable. Because when others worship the imaginary, and take their belief in the imaginary seriously, then destruction usually follows. Faith and force are joined at the hip. Witch burnings, torture racks, abortion doctor killings, all in the name of the imaginary.

If you and your brethren will ignore it, I will. But we both know that probably won't happen.

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 10:41 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson, you say the 10 commandants don't apply to you.
You seem to be implying some kind of moral perfection.

Jesus said just looking at a women with lust you have already committed adultery in your heart.

Are you free from this one too?

July 15, 2011 10:43 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

Ydemoc thanks for your answer and you may be right. However I think it only fair if we let r_C321 speak for himself.

July 15, 2011 10:45 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

"As far as why interact with it and not just ignore it? Because reality is too important. Because life is too valuable. Because when others worship the imaginary, and take their belief in the imaginary seriously, then destruction usually follows. Faith and force are joined at the hip. Witch burnings, torture racks, abortion doctor killings, all in the name of the imaginary. "

faith and force are corollaries. Every day I witness just further reinforces that belief in my mind. Thank you Ydemoc, much better said then I:)

July 15, 2011 10:49 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc, you mentioned something about abortion doctor killings Can you be more specific?

Many people have used God or The bible to justify their wickedness. It's fine they will have to give an account one day.

July 15, 2011 10:49 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Justin,

Yes, I thought it might have been a little premature of me to jump in with my assessment of r_321's intention.

So, r_c321, what is your answer to Justin?

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 10:49 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

50/50

Witness and Giving a defense.

July 15, 2011 10:55 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321,

From Wikipedia:

Army of God (AOG) is a Christian terrorist anti-abortion organization that sanctions the use of force to combat abortion in the United States. HBO produced a documentary on the Army Of God entitled Soldiers In The Army Of God.[1]

More from Wikipedia:

The Army of God, an underground terrorist organization active in the United States, has been responsible for a substantial amount of anti-abortion violence. In addition to numerous property crimes, the group has committed acts of kidnapping, attempted murder, and murder. In August 1982, three men identifying as the Army of God kidnapped Hector Zevallos (a doctor and clinic owner) and his wife, Rosalee Jean, holding them for eight days.[37] In 1993, Shelly Shannon, a very active member of the Army of God, was found guilty for the attempted murder of Dr. George Tiller.[38] That same year, law enforcement officials found the Army of God Manual, a tactical guide to arson, chemical attacks, invasions, and bombings buried in Shelly Shannon's backyard.[37] Paul Jennings Hill was found guilty of the murder of both Dr. John Britton and clinic escort James Barrett. The Army of God justified his actions on the grounds that "whatever force is legitimate to defend the life of a born child is legitimate to defend the life of an unborn child... if in fact Paul Hill did kill or wound abortionist John Britton, and accomplices James Barrett and Mrs. Barrett, his actions are morally justified if they were necessary for the purpose of defending innocent human life".[10] The AOG claimed responsibility for Eric Robert Rudolph's 1997 shrapnel bombing of abortion clinics in Atlanta and Birmingham.[39]

July 15, 2011 10:57 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321,

In my above post from Wikipedia, just for the fun of it, replace "Army of God" with "Army of the Invisible Magic Being" or "Army of the Imaginary Being."

Ydemoc

July 15, 2011 11:01 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

sounds like al-qaeda to me Ydemoc.

r_c321, thank you for answering. However I wish for you to understand that here with us, the only viable defence of Christianity that will matter to us is reasoned debate.

July 15, 2011 11:04 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

oh and as for the witnessing part.... man give it a rest, I have known about Christ for 34 years! Seriously I know:)

July 15, 2011 11:08 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc Thank you.

That is what religion does to people.

That is what a false view of God and a distortion of his word leads to.

July 15, 2011 11:08 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Justin,

Why do you reject Christ?

July 15, 2011 11:12 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

r_c321: “Dawson, it amazes me that all of a sudden you want to appeal to a dictionary.”

What could possibly be wrong with citing a dictionary for one’s definitions?

r_c321: “I remember before you ran and got your philosophy book.”

Why is it wrong to cite a philosophy’s definition of a particular term?

r_c321: “To try and explain away the abstractness of good.”

You obviously misunderstood what I was saying then. You had asked about the *word* ‘good’, and I explained that words are symbols and therefore concretes, and I explained why as well. You did not ask about the *concept* good. I pointed out that words are distinct from the concepts which they symbolize. Concepts are abstract, not words per se. But you never asked about the *concept* ‘good’. You asked about the *word* ‘good’. There’s a difference between words and concepts. I answered the question which you actually posed to me.

r_c321: “This is classic atheist behavior.”

If only that were the case! Most atheists are just as confused about the relationship between words and the concepts they symbolize as Christians are.

r_c321: “Nide is a relative. He is not a Christian.”

I’m afraid I just don’t find this explanation at all persuasive.

r_c321: “Dawson, talking about childish. You give a link to his blog. Which is kind of ridiculous.”

Your identity is in question, since you do not identify yourself. And twice now you have “accidentally” posted comments under someone else’s moniker? I don’t buy it.

r_c321: “You angry Dawson?”

At you? Hell no. You’re the entertainment!

r_c321: “Did I hurt your feelings?”

Not at all. You couldn’t even if you tried.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 3:11 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

r_321: “Dawson, you say the 10 commandants don't apply to you.”

Actually, I don’t think they apply to anyone. I pointed out that they are useless as a moral guide, and I explained why. Christians seem unable to rescue them from my criticisms of them.

r_c321: “You seem to be implying some kind of moral perfection.”

How so? What do you mean by “moral perfection” and how did I imply this?

r_c321: “Jesus said just looking at a women with lust you have already committed adultery in your heart. Are you free from this one too?”

Of course. Everyone is. It is arbitrary. It arbitrarily equates thoughts one might entertain with actions one may not have even taken. It’s all about alienating the believer from his own mind in order to overwhelm him with unearned guilt and thus break his spirit. Men with broken spirits are easily led. Those who have allowed their spirits to be broken in this manner are prone to envying and resenting those who haven’t. So in this regard, r_c321, you’re right on schedule.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 3:18 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Ydemoc,

Thanks for posting the information about the Army of God Christian terrorist group. It’s a trend among Christians that receives little airplay in our culture. Few have even heard of them.

In response to this information, however, r_c321 wrote:

“That is what a false view of God and a distortion of his word leads to.”

How does one determine that the view of god that the Army of God follows is “false,” while holding that another view of god is true? I’m sure if you survey the members of the Army of God sub-cult, they would say that their view of god is the true view, and that any view which condemns their interpretation is false. So how does someone who puts faith in god-belief in the first place determine which is the true interpretation, and which ones are false?

This goes back to the theme that Robert raised in his discussion of Martin and Drange. It’s one which Christians themselves (like Michael Butler) either ignore or brush aside rather casually, as if it were a non-issue. But clearly it is an issue, especially when you have some believers out there forming terrorist groups in the name of Christ, and others condemning such factions in the name of Christ.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 3:58 AM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Dawson wrote: "Thanks for posting the information about the Army of God Christian terrorist group. It’s a trend among Christians that receives little airplay in our culture. Few have even heard of them."

You're welcome. The topic - not so much terrorism, but abortion - reminds me that some time ago I posed a question to a Christian I know who was delighted to have a child. The question was: If there were even the *slightest* chance that this little child who *you* as a believing Christian brought into this world, could go to hell, why would you even have a child? Why risk it?

The Christian dismissed my question as "silly."

Another question I asked was: As a believing Christian, would you go to hell for all eternity, if it was guaranteed that your child would go to heaven? This question wasn't answered either, as I recall.

Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 5:26 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson said: "Those who have allowed their spirits to be broken in this manner are prone to envying and resenting those who haven’t"

So, Dawson, are you claiming you have never lusted after a women?

According to the apostle John "If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.

You also said: "But clearly it is an issue, especially when you have some believers out there forming terrorist groups in the name of Christ, and others condemning such factions in the name of Christ.


There are many who claim to believe in Christ.
but their hearts are far away from him. Its merely lip service.

Jesus said it clearly many will say to me on that day Lord, Lord in your name with did this and that. Jesus will say depart from me I never knew you. You workers of iniquity.

Ydemoc, and this also a trend among Non-believers, that is, you purposely will use anything to discret the bible and christianity. No matter how bad and false the source is. It's really a bad practice. You refuse to deal with the issues honestly.


Ydemoc, your questions about hell are interesting.
I will admit that I don't know everything.
I will think about them and Lord willing have a response soon.

July 16, 2011 7:13 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Ydemoc: “The Christian dismissed my question as ‘silly’."

I’m not at all surprised by this response to your question. But sadly it leaves the question unanswered. Christians typically don’t want even to entertain such questions, let alone give definitive answers to them. Not only do they touch on uncomfortable implications of their theistic beliefs, they also probe the believer’s character at the same time. The devotional program of Christianity requires the believer to suppress his character, in effect to conceal it even from himself, as much as is possible, in order not to confront the deception that its practices demand of him. The last thing he wants to do is expose his true character to “the world,” especially before those to whom he’s trying to pass himself off as someone mystically superior to them.

Ydemoc: “Another question I asked was: As a believing Christian, would you go to hell for all eternity, if it was guaranteed that your child would go to heaven? This question wasn't answered either, as I recall.”

Same thing here. It’s almost as if they fear that even by entertaining such questions, there’s a chance that their god will actually have them face such a choice. But it’s a real character test. Christianity is in essence all about self-sacrifice. That’s the very image of Christ on the cross – the model self-sacrifice held up for all believers to accept and embrace as the highest expression of the moral ideal. So ask them: is there anything they would not give up for their god? Is there anything they would not do for their god, especially if it required it of them? Look at the example of Abraham being commanded to prepare his own son as a burnt offering. The story in no way suggests that Abraham had any problem with this. When commanded to prepare his son Isaac as a sacrifice, Abraham is portrayed as dutifully obeying the command with the same indifference as one putting on his shoes in the morning.

Christians will often react to such questions by saying that they are doctrinally invalid, insisting that their god would never put them to such a test. How they know this is never really clear; it seems that their god is a free agent, with its own independent volition and the freedom to demand of its creatures whatever it wants (cf. Ps. 115:3). But whether or not the question is explicitly in line with what Christianity teaches will be the case is besides the point, and attempts by the believer to focus on this question is an attempt to distract critics from the real issue, which is the character of the believer. Believers are said to be “new creatures in Christ,” and the bible does explicitly say that “greater love
hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). Believers portray themselves as no longer belonging to themselves, but belonging to their god, their wills supernaturally overhauled, their character transformed from earthly, carnal and wicked reprobates to renewed, “born again,” and sanctified saints. So they should have resolute and unashamed determinations of what they would do in any moral context. So what accounts for the conspicuous hesitation in addressing these questions, if not some problem lurking beneath the surface that they want to keep under wraps?

I have asked many believers, when discussing the afterlife, how they think they could be happy in heaven when their loved ones are roasting in hellfire for all eternity. Perhaps it their mother or father, a sibling or a spouse, or a child or a long-time friend. Could they be truly be happy knowing that their loved ones are suffering inescapable torment forever and ever, amen? Responses to this question have ranged from silence to debates over its validity, to claims that the Christian god will erase their memories of their loved ones, to you name it. There is no consistent answer from believers, and many seem never to have thought of it before. It’s one question that plagued me when I tried to be a Christian some 20 years ago. Now look at me! Free at last!

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 8:15 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

r_c321: “So, Dawson, are you claiming you have never lusted after a women?”

How did you get the impression that I was making such a claim? I nowhere made such a claim. I relish the sight of a beautiful woman. And, I do so completely guilt-free.

I know, that probably bugs you, and you’ll want to use it against me in some way. Go ahead and try. You’ll find that I will continue enjoying my life, even when others stew in their petty disapproval.

R_c321: “According to the apostle John ‘If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us’.”

This assumes the truth of the Christian doctrine of sin, which rests on stolen concepts, and is therefore philosophically invalid. It requires that one accept guilt even before he has done anything. Indeed, according to Christianity, all we need to do is be born, and presto, we’re guilty. Christianity essentially holds that man is guilty by virtue of existing, that his guilt is that he exists. It must hold this premise, for otherwise its devotional program could never get off the ground. Man’s “sin nature” must be universal to all men, regardless of their age, regardless of the level of their intellect, regardless of their choices and actions. We have all been judged before we have even been born. That’s the only way one can reasonably interpret the gist of passages like Romans 5:12, which explicitly states that “sin entered the world by one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people.” When it continues on saying “because all have sinned,” this only confirms that we’ve been judged guilty before we’ve even been born: we’ve been convicted of transgression before we’ve even had the chance to transgress. This is the doctrine of unearned guilt. There is no legitimate reason or excuse for accepting it. One must have a very low opinion of himself to accept it.

r_c321: “There are many who claim to believe in Christ. but their hearts are far away from him. Its merely lip service.”

But such statements don’t address the matter. How is anyone to determine that the hearts of those in the Army of God sub-cult are “far away from” Christ, when in fact it may be folks like you, Nide, who “claim to believe in Christ” but are merely paying lip service?

r_c321: “Jesus said it clearly many will say to me on that day Lord, Lord in your name with did this and that. Jesus will say depart from me I never knew you. You workers of iniquity.”

So how do we know that Christ will not embrace the Army of God as his own, and say to you, Nide, “depart from me, I never knew you”?

The passages you cite can be used by any Christian faction to confirm its denunciation of rival factions, just as you have done. There’s no objective measuring stick to determine the truth value of either party’s interpretive platform.

R_c321 to Ydemoc: “You refuse to deal with the issues honestly.”

You’re a fine one to talk, Nide. Do you think you’re either dealing with the issues that have been raised in this discussion, or that you’re presenting yourself honestly? You are a chronic evader, like a junky who’s addicted to some narcotic who's constantly manufacturing excuses for his habit. You don’t deal with anything, and your dishonesty is off the charts.

R_c321: “I will admit that I don't know everything.”

Earlier I asked you if you understand the doctrine of the trinity. I do not see that you have addressed this question. Either you do fully understand it, or you don’t. There is no in-between here. What is your answer? I know of many Christians who themselves would like to know.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 8:43 AM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Dawson,

Thanks for expanding on my questions.

Also, it's a good thing many here in the West (with the exception of groups like the Army of God, Fred Phelps, Koresh, Applewhite, and a few others), do not take their faith to such an extreme. It seems most believers here in America tend to just "supplement" their lives with religion. Kind of like taking a vitamin each day (or week).

r_c321,

Yes, give some thought to my questions about hell. And while your at it, give some thought to 2 Peter 3:9, and how it's the Lord's desire that none should perish.

And think about what that would mean if the Lord really had his wish or desire granted. (a silly notion to begin with)

Then think about how that jibes with Mathew 7:13, as well as other passages in the bible that indicate that many souls are already condemned.

So was God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, sitting up in heaven, devising this whole universe and people thing going, "Gee, I really wish none of these humans I'm about to create would perish, but goshdarnit, some are going to have to. I'll just tell them later in a book that my desire was to not have them perish. That should do the trick!"

Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 9:13 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson said: "It’s one question that plagued me when I tried to be a Christian some 20 years ago. Now look at me! Free at last!"

Free from what?

What happened did it get a little to hard?

Dawson, there are a lot of people who "try" being a christian and fail miserably. You can't try being a christian. You either are a christian or not. "Trying" to be "good" can't save you. I would encourage you to look up the Doctrine of imputation. God is good alone. Jesus was God. Therefore he is good. So, Only his goodness can save you.

There are many Religious people sitting in churches. That know the bible back and forth and as one pastor put it. They will only end in hell in a more Pious way.

Not sure why you are calling me nide.

What is your question concerning the trinity?

You said: "So how do we know that Christ will not embrace the Army of God as his own, and say to you, Nide, “depart from me, I never knew you”?

Well, you were a "christian" once who "believed" in God. What do you think?

You continued "There’s no objective measuring stick to determine the truth value of either party’s interpretive platform."

Well, I guess the bible is out the window.

Your wrong about so many things. Its amazing.

Men are sent to hell for carrying out the desires of their sinful hearts.

Not for having a sin Nature.

As, you seem to want to present.

Give the bible a fair reading before you make your assumptions.

Regards,
Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 9:26 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

I encourage you to look at the context of 2 peter 3:9.

You will clearly see that peter is talking to christians. God desires his people to be saved and they will be saved.

July 16, 2011 9:31 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

r_c321: “Free from what?”

Free from the systematic self-deception that Christianity requires of believers.

r_c321: “What happened did it get a little to hard?”

I faced the fact, which my pastor and other “brethren” sought to keep from me, that I was simply too honest to be a Christian. Once I realized that all the fears that had me in a chokehold were ultimately based in imagination, the grip that Christianity had on me simply disappeared and was no more.

r_c321: “Dawson, there are a lot of people who ‘try’ being a christian and fail miserably..."

My pastor and other “brothers in Christ” said precisely the same thing to me. Their common refrain was “Let go, and let God.” But even then, who’s doing the “letting” in that case? This is an imperative directed at the believer himself, as this is something he is expected to make happen. So the message here is contradictory. It’s a case of saying one thing while demanding something contrary to it.

r_c321: “I would encourage you to look up the Doctrine of imputation. God is good alone. Jesus was God. Therefore he is good. So, Only his goodness can save you.”

It’s all imaginary, Nide. It’s only “true” in your imagination.

r_c321: “Not sure why you are calling me nide.”

You aren’t? Haven’t you been paying attention? I shall address you as Nide from here on forward.

Nide: “What is your question concerning the trinity?”

Again, haven’t you been paying attention? Here’s what I asked you earlier in this very thread:

Let me ask you, r_c321: your statements about the doctrine of the trinity suggest that you fully understand it. In fact, you come across as though you thought there should be no question about its meaning, truth or coherence. Is that true? Am I reading you correctly? Do you fully understand the doctrine of the trinity?

I don’t know why you haven’t addressed this.

I wrote: "So how do we know that Christ will not embrace the Army of God as his own, and say to you, Nide, “depart from me, I never knew you”?

Nide: “Well, you were a ‘christian’ once who ‘believed’ in God. What do you think?”

I stated what I think, and you even quoted me. Observe:

There’s no objective measuring stick to determine the truth value of either party’s interpretive platform.

Nide: “Well, I guess the bible is out the window.”

That’s just the point, Nide: all Christian factions are going to cite the bible as the proof-text for their interpretations, practices and overall view of things. Just as you do. In the end, you’re no different from those who you say “claim to believe in Christ but their hearts are far away from him” and whose worship of Jesus you as “merely lip service.”

Nide: “Your wrong about so many things.”

I’m sure you’d like to convince yourself of this. Keep trying. But so far, you’ve not scored one point on behalf of your god-belief. And I’m not the only one who’s assessed the discussion this way.

Nide: “Men are sent to hell for carrying out the desires of their sinful hearts.”

If they were born with sinful hearts, as your statement here can only suggest (the nature of their hearts is sinful), then my analysis stands. If you back away from this position, you stand at odds with the doctrines given in the bible that I quoted.

Nide: “Not for having a sin Nature.”

I am not the originator of the notion of a “sin nature.” Many Christians have affirmed precisely this picture of man, that he has a “sin nature” inherent in his being. Your dispute is not with me (for I do not affirm such a view in the first place), but with other Christians who have affirmed such a view, if in fact you are disputing it in the first place. But how could Christians disagree on something as basic as man’s nature? Especially if they’re supposed to have an infallible guide in their hands? Again, the problem is not mine. It’s in Christianity, flat and simple.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 10:45 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Brother Dawson, What is confusing you about the trinity?

Also, I am not disputing man's sinful nature. What I am saying is that alone wont send you to hell.

As I stated, it is carrying out those desires that your nature present you with that send you to hell.

God doesn't send anyone to hell people send them selves.


So, then morality is subjective?

July 16, 2011 11:10 AM  
Blogger ActionJackson864 said...

@r_c321/Nide

you have been a complete waste of time. As far as I have seen you have not addressed anyone's points, or answered any questions that Dawson or anyone else has raised here.

We have asked you many questions for you to address and you just post a bible verse that doesn't even make sense to post in relation to the onslaught of valid points and sincere questions that we raise to you. Seeing you waste time here has been entertaining, like watching an amateur MMA fighter being brutally KO'ed by a pro. Or like watching early Mike Tyson Fights...and just to clarify so that you dont misinterpret what I say, its YOU who is on the receiving/ losing end.

I have never seen such a time waster/ dishonest, childish debater on this blog.

July 16, 2011 12:44 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

ActionJackson, Thanks

July 16, 2011 12:55 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

I am new to this blog, having been introduced by Justin, who is involved in this and the previous discussion thread. I would like to note some angles which I feel may have been missed, as I agree to some extent with many of the parties here. For instance, I would agree that R_C is perfectly justified in following/trying to follow the 10 commandments, adultery in the heart, etc. I also firmly agree with Dawson, in that i cannot conceive of why an adult should choose to follow the rules of that particular game. (R_C, you would probably prefer the term faith rather than game, but they are semantically equivalent for this purpose.) Those, and other rules fr0om the Christian bible are the Game rules of Christianity, different flavors of which consider different game rules to be more important.

The question which R_C has not addressed, however, is the question of why we should choose to follow that particular set of game rules,. rather than those of Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, or Objectivism, or, like myself, to decline to play any of these games of faith.

so, R_C, the question which you must address before you appeal to the bible, is the question: Why is the Bible a source of true information. There is as much and as little evidence for the occurrences in the Bible as there is for the occurrences in the Bhagavad Gita, the Ramayana, The poetic Eddas, and the, and considerably less evidence that the Bhuddhist sutras, as there is independent documentation of the existence at least of Siddharta Gautama and other major figures in Buddhism, if not all of the specific actions which Buddhists claim he performed. Thus,m it falls upon the apologist (That's you, R_C) to explain why exactly we should treat the bible differently than any other collection of folktales. (By the way, this is the essence of Justin's questioning as well; he'll be back in a while but he's reformatting his computer at the moment.)

July 16, 2011 2:28 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321,

Hi, again, r_c321 (or Nide).

r_c321 wrote: "I encourage you to look at the context of 2 peter 3:9. You will clearly see that peter is talking to christians. God desires his people to be saved and they will be saved."

Let's assume that this is indeed the proper interpretation. Does that not mean then that there are some people, like I said, that God has condemned from the very beginning? It all sounds so very much sounds like Dawson's "Cartoon Universe Premise of Theism."

Check it out some time.

Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 3:07 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “Brother Dawson, What is confusing you about the trinity?”

My question was directed to you: Do you, or do you not, fully understand the doctrine of the trinity?

It's interesting that you have abandoned discssion of the trinity since I raised this question. I also notice that you do not seem willing to answer it.

Nide: “Also, I am not disputing man's sinful nature. What I am saying is that alone wont send you to hell.”

Nide, hell is imaginary. Nothing is going to send anyone to a place that is merely imaginary.

Nide: “God doesn't send anyone to hell people send them selves.”

Of course “God doesn’t send anyone to hell.” There’s no hell, and there’s no god. A non-existent being doesn’t do anything.

Nide: “So, then morality is subjective?”

Christian morality is indeed subjective. It is all ultimately based on someone’s commands and say so. Even on Christianity’s own premises, it has no objective basis whatsoever.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 4:00 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dalillama welcome,

You said: "the question which R_C has not addressed, however, is the question of why we should choose to follow that particular set of game rules,. rather than those of Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, or Objectivism, or, like myself, to decline to play any of these games of faith.

I actually answered this allready. The reason why I dont follow those religions is because they will send you straight to hell.

Religious people keep and follow rules.
The problem is Religion can't save you.
Trying to be "good" doesn't work.
In fact, Paul in Romans said this clearly.

So, I am not sure were you got the idea that I was asking anyone to keep the 10 commandments.

I encourage you to scroll up.

Also, I am not really sure why you are telling me about Justin's computer. Should I be expecting him?

Ydemoc,

Have you read my recent post?
I think you will find your answer there.
God doesn't send anyone to hell.
People send themselves.
By carrying out the sinful desires of their heart.

The law did not come so people can keep it.
It came to show them that they had allready broken it and need salvation from the curse of the law.

That salvation is found In Jesus Christ.
That is the reason he came to fulfill the law.
So that many can be saved.


Regards,

Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 4:24 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Brother Dawson said: "Do you, or do you not, fully understand the doctrine of the trinity?"

Do you undersatnd it?

You used to be a christian.
Remember the hymn Holy, Holy, Holy.

The answer is there, Listen to it
it would bring back some good memories.

Also, your begging the question by your little tirade against hell and GOD.

Did you search the universe and not find it?

July 16, 2011 4:30 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

R_C said:
"
I actually answered this allready. The reason why I dont follow those religions is because they will send you straight to hell. "

This is why actionjackson called you all of those names, you know. Maybe I can make it clearer by reducing the number of things you have to attempt to think about when you answer. Let's take only the Christian Bible and the Qu'ran. Both of these books claim to be divinely revealed truth, and that anyone who odes not accept it will be tortured forever by an entity that no one can see, hear, or touch. These two books cannot both be true, as there are several conflicts therein. Speaking ss someone who subscribes to neither faith, what reason do I have for choosing the bible over the Qu'ran?


In fact, since both claim to be absolute truth, along with many other works which make the same claim, and none provide anything but bare assertions that this is the case, why should I not decide that it is most likely that none of them are, in fact true?

Note that quoting the Bible does not constitute an argument for why the Bible is true unless you can give a reason to accept the Bible as true, but not accept identical claims from the Qu'ran, the Bhagavad Gita, or any other book of mythology?

July 16, 2011 4:36 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Well that is what Religion does to people.
Im not really sure why AJ is so frustrated.
Is it because I don't want to convert to his religion?
Or the truth really hurts that.

You have a lot of catching up to do.
I have already answered your type of question.
It has to be given to you to believe.

You are only being what you
are by nature.

I can't convince you to do anything. So, asking me those kind of questions is irrelevant to any of this.


Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 4:55 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I asked: "Do you, or do you not, fully understand the doctrine of the trinity?"

Nide still does not answer, and replied: “Do you undersatnd it?”

Clearly Nide does not want to answer this question. He apparently recognizes that either way he answers it is going to land him in trouble. If so, he’s correct. That’s why he continues to dodge the question. And yet earlier he berated Ydemoc on the matter, as if it were plain for anyone to understand.

Nide: “You used to be a christian. Remember the hymn Holy, Holy, Holy. The answer is there, Listen to it.”

I’m afraid I don’t recall that particular hymn. But you’re saying that this hymn will tell us whether or not you fully understand the Christian doctrine of the trinity? Interesting! What does it say?

(One can never know what to expect from this guy. He says the darnedest things!)

Nide: “Also, your [sic] begging the question by your little tirade against hell and GOD.”

Nope, no question-begging on my part whatsoever. I’m simply being consistent with my worldview presuppositions. There’s a big difference. Didn’t Greg Bahnsen say the same?

Besides, I’ve already presented an argument that proves that your god does not exist. Where have you refuted any premise in it? You haven’t. I don’t think you can. No matter how much you try to overturn any part of my argument, I will still have no alternative but to imagine your god and all the other supernatural features of your worldview. Again, when I imagine your god, the resurrection of Jesus Christ, hell, heaven, Saul’s conversion, the acts of the apostles, etc., how is what I’m imagining *not* imaginary???

Nide: “Did you search the universe and not find it?”

Silly Nide. One does not need to search the universe to find something that does not exist. You should know that!

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 5:13 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

R_C said
"50/50 witnessing and defending the fait"

R_C said:
"I have already answered your type of question"

R_C said:
"I can't convince you of anything"

R_C appears to lack an understanding of what debate actually is.

If you do not believe that you have sufficient evidence to substantiate your claim, why are you making the claim to begin with? What is it that you hope to accomplish here? You have repeatedly stated your incapacity to affect us, reason with us, or convince us of anything, so why do you come back for more?

July 16, 2011 5:15 PM  
Blogger ActionJackson864 said...

"Well that is what Religion does to people.
Im not really sure why AJ is so frustrated.
Is it because I don't want to convert to his religion?"

again this only shows that you have completely ignored what we have been telling you here. Objectivism is not a religion and I could care less if you decide to be one. My problem lies with people like Bahnsen and Vantil who outrightly say "atheists are fools and don't have any reason to be atheists". Much like you have done.

Here is another example of you completely disregarding what Dawson asked you:

Dawson said: "Do you, or do you not, fully understand the doctrine of the trinity?"

RC:
"Do you undersatnd it?

You used to be a christian.
Remember the hymn Holy, Holy, Holy.

The answer is there, Listen to it
it would bring back some good memories."

you didnt answer anything...you just say "duh the answer is in the bible go find it."

I'm starting to question your ability to even understand what is going on here as your comments are many times questions as answers to questions. Most if not all are off topic and frivolous.

We are familiar with and have a vast understanding of what is in the Bible. You have not even a smidgen of the wealth of knowledge and Truth that is Objectivism.

So since we have read the bible, why don't you go read "Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology" By Ayn Rand Or, just go Read 5 of Dawson's posts, preferably the ones about the Primacy of Existence and its related axioms.

Then when finished, come back here and tell us the "holes" in Objectivism and how the bible proves that Objectivism is indeed fallacious.

This will not be a waste of time, as, if you are able to do this, you will surely convert many souls to christianity.

but, you'll probably just respond with a bible verse, say the bible answers what I have raised, or ask a question, and completely disregard what I have said.

July 16, 2011 5:19 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson, I am happy you are in agreement with Dr. bahnsen.

Also, you have no choice but to be consistent with your beliefs.

As I stared beforehand we are both only being what we are by nature.

Regards,
Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 5:22 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Dalillama: “If you do not believe that you have sufficient evidence to substantiate your claim…”

That’s really what it boils down to. Nide’s disclaimers about being able to persuade or convince anyone essentially translate into an admission that he does not have sufficient evidence to support his god-belief claims, or at any rate lacks confidence in anything he might propose as evidence in support of those claims. His dishonesty lies in trying to characterize this as some sort of deficiency on everyone else’s part rather than a shortcoming inherent in his own position. Basically Nide is saying, “Yeah, there really is no legitimate reason to believe my god is real, but that’s because there’s something wrong with you, not with my god.” It is a most crass display of irrationality. But that’s candid Christianity at its best: an open declaration of war on man’s mind and a choice to delight in one’s own self-inflicted futility.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 5:25 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

AJ, would you be kind enough to explain to me the doctrine of objectivism and the primacy of existence
I really would like to know what your religion says about them.

Regards,
Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 5:27 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “Dawson, I am happy you are in agreement with Dr. bahnsen.”

I’m happy you’re happy. Now, where does the hymn “Holy, Holy, Holy” tell us whether or not you fully understand the Christian doctrine of the trinity? Here’s a link to the hymn’s lyrics. I don’t see where it answers the question I posed to you.

Why not just tell us? Or am I right in wagering that either way you answer it will be death to your credibility? (Not that you have any to begin with, but you seem to enjoy nails being driven into your coffin.)

Nide: “Also, you have no choice but to be consistent with your beliefs.”

What is your argument for this view? Or, do you just accept it on faith?

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 5:36 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson, there was a point in your life when you were trying to be a "christian" it seems to me things got a little rough and you couln't hack it.

I am pretty sure you even when out and preached the gospel and went to prayer meetings, loved going to bible study and sunday worhsip.

There was a time when God wasn't imaginary to you.

Was it the Doctrine of the trinity
That you seem to be obssed with?

Can you tell us how you converted to atheism and why?

July 16, 2011 5:43 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dawson said: What is your argument for this view? Or, do you just accept it on faith?

I dont accept anything I am only carrying out the desires of my heart. I dont have a choice.

There is no argument.

Do you want to be a christian again?

July 16, 2011 5:47 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “There was a time when God wasn't imaginary to you.”

It was always imaginary, Nide. It is for every believer. Only the believer seeks to suppress this truth in unrighteousness, either because he's afraid to challenge it, or because his peers pressure him into suppressing it, or some combination of these. That’s what all the doctrines of Christianity are designed to do – to keep the believer wandering aimlessly in the labyrinth.

Nide: “Was it the Doctrine of the trinity That you seem to be obssed with?”

Obsession is not what led me out of Christianity. It was my own choice to be honest to myself that did it.

Nide: “Can you tell us how you converted to atheism and why?”

Very simple. I made the choice to be honest, a choice that Christianity and all my “brothers” sought to prevent me from making. Thereafter, it was only natural that I would walk away from the mess that is Christianity.

You want to know why? Because I’m worth it. That’s why.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 5:52 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

R_C, you are a waste of food, water, oxygen and time. You are a fool of the first water, and are completely incapable of engaging in anything even approaching a reasoned argument. You have no understanding of truth, consistency, logic, or fact. You are unable to provide any reason to continue to acknowledge your words or your existence, and I decline to do so any further. Good bye.

July 16, 2011 5:52 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide had written: “Also, you have no choice but to be consistent with your beliefs.”

I asked: “What is your argument for this view? Or, do you just accept it on faith?”

Nide: “I dont accept anything I am only carrying out the desires of my heart. I dont have a choice.”

I see. You’re just a mindless mystic bot. That answers a lot of questions.

Nide: “There is no argument.”

Right, you have no argument for your stated views. At least you now admit this.

Nide: “Do you want to be a christian again?”

No.

Incidentally, this question presupposes that at one time I *was* a Christian, a premise which many Christians have hotly disputed. Interesting how it is now tacitly accepted without question.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 5:56 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dallilillama, see ya wouln't wanna be ya.
One down 10 more to go.

Not so fast, dawson, I don't agree one bit that anyone could lose their salvation.

So, the joke is on you.

Looks like you got the short end of the stick.

Incinerating atheist one at a time,
Hezekiah Ahaz

Acts 16: "And he called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas, 30 and after he brought them out, he said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
31 They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.

July 16, 2011 6:48 PM  
Blogger ActionJackson864 said...

"One down 10 more to go."

what exactly do you think you have accomplished?


"Incinerating atheist one at a time,
Hezekiah Ahaz"

so happy for you!...erm..but wait a second....

how specifically did you "incinerate an atheist"?

you are a frivolous time waster. and are not worth anyone's time.

July 16, 2011 7:16 PM  
Blogger Rick Warden said...

The definition of proof is something that is convincing. Your so-called proof is based on a presupposition that God is imaginary because God is not seen upon demand. It's a rather silly offer of proof.

You are correct to point out that Christians present more arguments as proof for God than visa versa.

I challenge any atheists at this blog to disprove the following argument for God's existence:

How Identity, Logic and Physics Prove God's Existence

http://templestream.blogspot.com/2011/03/how-identity-logic-and-physics-prove.html

Regards,

Rick

July 16, 2011 7:41 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 (Nide, Hezekiah) wrote: "Not so fast, dawson, I don't agree one bit that anyone could lose their salvation."

And yet another point of dispute among the factions.

r_c321 (Nide, Hezekiah) wrote: "So, the joke is on you."

Speaking of jokes, have you noticed there is, from what I can tell, no *intentional* humor in the bible? (though, obviously, lots of unintentional humor) In fact, in Ephesians 5:4, I believe the bible frowns on "jesting."

On a side note, the bible also indicates that people who don't eat meat have succumbed or are being tempted by the devil - 1 Timothy 4: 1-3. (Now that's funny!)


r_c321 (Nide, Hezekiah) wrote, quoting the Acts: "31 They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household."

What do you suppose it means, r_c321, to say that "you and your household" are saved?

Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 7:46 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

It says coarse jesting. That's a lot diffrent than what you presented.

Also, I looked at Timothy I am not really sure what you are trying to present. Here is the text can you point out to me what you are trying to say.

1 Timothy 4: 1-3 " 1 The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. 2 Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. 3 They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth".


Ydemoc I believe it is clear the man and his
household were saved.

Not sure were you are taking this.

Atheist Burner,
Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 8:25 PM  
Blogger ActionJackson864 said...

Nide said:

"Atheist Burner,
Hezekiah Ahaz"

I think you meant "spam burner". The first Bahnsenburner.blogspot spammer, "hezekiah Ahaz/Nide/RC321"

congratulations Nide/Hezekiah I'm sure Jesus has a big faith-full hard on for ya.

Dawson you know you are doing something right when this sorry excuse for a presupper is all the pressupers have got to come on the scene. He can't follow or present an argument. I think many are in agreement that this guy "rc" is a spammer, and is either 14 or is missing a chromosome.

July 16, 2011 8:44 PM  
Blogger ActionJackson864 said...

"AJ, would you be kind enough to explain to me the doctrine of objectivism and the primacy of existence
I really would like to know what your religion says about them."

which again shows you must be ignoring us as Dawson explained earlier that Objectivism is not a religion. If you really want to learn about Objectivism, go read the book I mentioned above by Ayn Rand or read 5 of Dawson's posts. At this point I'm convinced you are just being disrespectful on purpose.

July 16, 2011 8:50 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Rick Warden wrote: “The definition of proof is something that is convincing.”

Where did you get this definition? I’ve never seen it in any logic text.

But if proof is defined as “something that is convincing,” then what I have presented certainly qualifies as a proof, for I find it entirely convincing. Also, I notice that you have not refuted any of my argument's premises. Neither has Nide. My conclusion thus prevails.

Rick continued: “Your so-called proof is based on a presupposition that God is imaginary because God is not seen upon demand.”

Where does my proof argue that “God is imaginary *because God is not seen upon demand*”? I nowhere presented this as an argument for any of the premises in my proof. In fact, I provided a link to an earlier blog entry of mine which presents 13 pieces of evidence, any one of which by itself is sufficient to the task, which show that the Christian god is in fact imaginary. Christians have not brought any sustainable challenge to any of them.

Rick wrote: “I challenge any atheists at this blog to disprove the following argument for God's existence: How Identity, Logic and Physics Prove God's Existence http://templestream.blogspot.com/2011/03/how-identity-logic-and-physics-prove.html”

I see that you’ve made an addendum to this blog entry since I last saw it. Before it barely even mentioned “God” and certainly presented no argument for the existence of such a thing. Now there’s what appears to be an expanded syllogism, but on first reading it appears to make a lot of leaps and ignore a lot of holes. Beyond these, however, the problem with “proofs” such as the one you present in your blog, Rick, is that we’re still stuck with no alternative but to *imagine* the god whose existence you think you’re trying to prove. I could use essentially the same course of “reasoning” to “prove” the existence of Blarko the WonderBeing, which I freely admit is imaginary.

Also, given your own declared definition of ‘proof’, Rick, you have failed to present one, for what you have presented is not “something that is convincing.” Sorry, pal.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 9:02 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide wrote: “Also, I looked at Timothy I am not really sure what you are trying to present.”

I’m reminded of when Nide made the claim that Jeremiah 17:9 “says a lot about the human thought process and how concepts are formed,” even though the passage never mentions concepts in the first place. And, when asked to elaborate on the matter, Nide completely ignores the matter.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 9:05 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: "It says coarse jesting. That's a lot diffrent than what you presented."

So how would you define "coarse jesting?" Does Jay Leno "coarsely jest"? How about Letterman or John Stewart. How about Larry The Cable Guy, a big draw in the bible belt, by the way. How about Eddie Murphy in his day, or Richard Prior in his day? How about Larry David?


As for your translation, what bible are you using?

Here it is, 1 Timothy 4:3 in the Greek along with it's translation in the KJV.
-----------------
kwluontwn gamein apecesqai brwmatwn a o qeoV ektisen eiV *metalhyin* meta eucaristiaV toiV pistoiV kai epegnwkosin thn alhqeian

Forbidding to marry and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

--------------------

This translation is in accordance with Strong's.

Obviously, the translation you're referring to has tried to offer up it's own spin. I wonder why? Why change the meaning? Perhaps, in order to make it appear that modern day nutritionists, doctors, health practitioners who advise patients and clients not to eat meat for health reasons, need not worry about being lumped in with all the evil people about which this verse speaks?

r_c321 wrote: "Not sure were you are taking this."

Now are you sure? Or are you still uncertain?

I'm just exposing some troubling passages. But if I've derailed the topic at hand with my tangent, well, now you know how it feels.

By the way, the verse goes on to say that "every creature of God is good, and nothing to be received with thanksgiving"

Does the substance of this verse apply to eating any poisonous creature?


Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 9:08 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

AJ wrote: "Dawson you know you are doing something right when this sorry excuse for a presupper is all the pressupers have got to come on the scene. He can't follow or present an argument."

Indeed. If Nide is the best that presuppositionalism can put forward on behalf of defending the Christian worldview, it's got bigger problems than even I figured.

I'm still not entirely convinced that Nide is actually a Christian. (But I am convinced that he's the same guy who blogs under the name Nide Corniell.) He seems to be a troll out for the chief purpose of annoying people. But I'm willing to take him at his word - if he truly is a "god-fearing" Christian, then it just goes to show what Christianity can do to a mind. Rick Warden is another great example of this. Simply amazing!

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 9:13 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

In my previous post of Timothy 1 4:4 I made a typo. It should read:

4:4 For every creature of God [is] good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:


And my question is: should poisonous creatures be consumed as long as they are received with thanksgiving?

Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 9:20 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

It's actually talking about Religious people.
Who think they can please by God by doing Pious acts and who would love for others to follow them.

That's the problem with Men they want to be "good"'on their own terms.

July 16, 2011 9:39 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

Would you eat a poisonous snake?

July 16, 2011 9:44 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: "Would you eat a poisonous snake?"

Poisonous in the sense that if I ate it it would make me ill or kill me? No.

Poisonous in the sense that the reptile is dangerous via transmission of venom through a bite, but its meat is safe for consumption? Of course, if I was hungry enough or if I happened to enjoy eating that kind of food and it was low in saturated fat and cholesterol and had high Omega 3 Fatty Acid content.

But you should ask yourself that question, as well as whether or not you would handle poisonous snakes or drink poison, for if you turn your bible to Mark 16:7-8 you will find:
----------------------
And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
-----------------------

Of course, this was a later addition, and not in the oldest manuscripts, so you will probably dismiss it. Or maybe not.

Ydemoc

July 16, 2011 10:01 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide wrote: “It's actually talking about Religious people. Who think they can please by God by doing Pious acts and who would love for others to follow them.”

And your view is that men should not try to please your god. That’s fine. I won’t.

Nide: “That's the problem with Men they want to be ‘good' on their own terms.”

So on your view, no one should be allowed to determine the terms for what they consider to be good. Someone else must dictate that to them, right? Is that your view?

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 10:17 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dismissed.

I am sure you are aware of the "christian" snake handlers.
and how some have died.

Remember what Jedus told satan It is said, 'YOU SHALL NOT PUT THE LORD YOUR GOD TO THE TEST.'"


Hezekiah Ahaz

July 16, 2011 10:25 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

Rick Warden said:"
I challenge any atheists at this blog to disprove the following argument for God's existence:

How Identity, Logic and Physics Prove God's Existence

http://templestream.blogspot.com/2011/03/how-identity-logic-and-physics-prove.html
"

I'll take up that gauntlet, Rick. HEre's a point by point for ya: My comments are in brackets.

I. Logic is Based on Universal Truth and Validity.

[This is false. Logic is a process or technique used for connecting concepts and drawing inferences.
Formal logic, which is the relevant type (there are others, used in computing and mathematics) can be applied
to entirely unreal propositions and return logically valid results. For instance, this is a logically valid
syllogism:

A:Always two there are, a master and an apprentice
B:Mace Windu killed the apprentice
therefore
C: There is now 1 Sith alive, who is a master

This is logically valid, and correct within the story. If Lucas had arbitrarily added more Sith, the moviegoing public
would lose some of their willing suspension of disbeleif. Logic can be used without regard to factual content.]

July 16, 2011 10:38 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

II. Quantum Physics Undermines Materialist Presuppositions
A. A quantum particle has no identifying characteristic until it is measured and collapsed.
[This is incorrect. A quantum particle has indeterminate characteristics which can be defined based on probability.
While we cannot know specific properties of quantum particles, we can know into what bounds those properties will fall
and what the probability is that they will fall into each state, although we cannot know what the specific state is until
it is collaped.]
B. Quantum non-locality and entanglement imply that boundaries that were assumed to be finite and localized are not.
[This does not appear to be relevant to the discussion. The assumptions of science are continually updated based on new
data, and this does not conflict in any way with my presuppositions.]
If the physical world is interconnected by energy, there is only one implied identity or no identity.
[While these are all English words and the sentence is grammatically correct, it appears to convey no semantic meaning.]
C. It is not the laws of physics that determine how information behaves in our Universe, but the other way round.
[Granted. This also does not conflict with my presuppostions, and I am an atheist, making this and A above examples of a
strawman fallacy.]
III. Evidence from NDE studies reveal the laws of logic and physics are in fact consistent.
A. Evidence of this phenomenon is verified by multiple doctors in the case of Pamela Reynolds.
1. Reynolds accurately described the appearance of a unique instrument used to cut her skull open, that she had never heard described or seen with her physical eyes.
[The latter portion of this statement is unproven. It is entirely within the scope of current knowlege regarding
cognition and neural function that she could have seen the device before or after the surgery and edited that sight into
a different time frame in her memory. Memory of temporal intervals is often poor, and memory inconsitencies are a known
side effect of surgical anasthesia.]
2. Reynolds accurately described specific conversations between doctors she could not have heard with her natural ears, according to the actual time-line of events.
[This is incorrect. Per the timeline of the surgery available to me, the statement she recalled was made prior to her clinical
death. ]

July 16, 2011 10:39 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

B. People born blind have made accurate, detailed descriptions of images they could not have seen with their natural eyes.
[Citation needed]
C. The specific identity of individuals is maintained after experiencing clinical death, consistent with the law of identity.
[If this means to say that a person who is revived from a breif state of clinical death retains their memory and personality
it is unclear to me why it is introduced. Memory shapes personality, and memory is physically recorded in the brain. The clinical death
stte is short enough that no significant physical damage to the brain ooccurs, then there is no reason why the brain should treat it differently from any other period of unconsciousness.]

D. NDE accounts confirm that human volition exists on a spiritual level.
[Not proven. See A above, and the extensive literature mentioned earler in the blog and dismissed due to the supposed counterexample she provides.]
E. Metaphysically, materialists cannot account for human volition and free will. A closed system of cause, effect and probability cannot conceivably produce free will.
[Logical fallacy: Appeal to emotion. The fact that you, or indded most people, might consider somthing unpalatabnle does not mean that it is untrue.
Arguements regarding free will are also essentially meaningless. Either we have free will, or it was predetermined that
we would feel like we have it, and neither proposition is verifiable. ]

F. NDE accounts verify a God with a loving nature exists. This supports the theist view over other religions.
[The first sentence is unsupported. There has still been no proof offered that NDE's occur outside the brain, and therefore
they are not evidence of a God. The second sentence is also untrue: Kwan Yin, Allah, and Shiva are all described as loving
gods, and I could name numerous others with a bit of research. At least this line admits that you're trying to prove three separate propositions,
the first being the existence of a soul/spirit, the second being the existence of one or more divinities, and the third
that your definition of god matches that divine entity. None of thes are proven here.]

July 16, 2011 10:39 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

IV. Conclusion
A. Proof is affirmed by logic and material evidence.
1. The materialist view is logically inconsistent and in conflict with science and evidence of the supernatural.
[No evidence of the supernatural has yet been provided, nor have you shown any inconsisencies in my worldveiw.]
2. The Christian view is supported by cohesive logic, science, evidence and scriptural text.
[I could provide numerous citations from a variety of supposed holy books saying similar things, but that's more effort than I'm willing to put
in until I have some confirmation that you're debating in good faith.]

July 16, 2011 10:40 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

1. Ultimately, only Jesus ever pleased God. by his death on the cross. Outside of him no one can please God.

2. Absolutely, God.

Like I said before your bevahior is consistent with
Romans 1.

July 16, 2011 10:46 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “1. Ultimately, only Jesus ever pleased God. by his death on the cross. Outside of him no one can please God.”

There is no way to please something that doesn’t exist, Nide.

Nide: “2. Absolutely, God.”

No imaginary beings will be dictating the terms of my happiness or what I evaluate as the good. I don't see how any adult thinker could have a problem with this. But when I point this out, I'm told things like the following:

Nide: “Like I said before your bevahior [sic] is consistent with Romans 1.”

As I pointed out before, you’re essentially saying that the bible condemns behavior stemming from a concern for recognizing the distinction between the real and the imaginary. For that has been the consistent theme of my conversation with you. Your worldview won’t survive a minute if one consistently distinguishes between the imaginary and the real, and that is why you want to condemn me: because I continually remind you of this distinction, and you cannot come clean with it. That’s not my problem.

Also, if your behavior is consistent with what Christianity teaches men to practice (as your constant references to religion and Romans 1 imly), then clearly I won’t be joining the club. As I mentioned before, I’m simply too honest to be a Christian.

Regards,
Dawson

July 16, 2011 11:29 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Can you find for me where I said Christianty teaches anyone to practice Religion?

Or am I misunderstanding you?

July 17, 2011 5:57 AM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

ok, everyone I am back. Had some major computer problems to resolve and they are. I achieved this thru objective reasoning:) I see much has been said so I have some catching up to do.

@Dawson

My good friend the Dalillama and I have had some very constructive debates over how objectivism covers morality/ethics and I think the three ofb us might have a fruitfull discussion on the topic. He has been criticial of objectivism.

July 17, 2011 8:23 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Dalillama,

Very interesting critique Rick Warden’s argument. Thank you for posting it here. I really appreciate it.

As I mentioned previously, when I read through Warden’s syllogism I detected a number of highly questionable if not utterly dubious claims and unsupported statements. For instance, when Warden says that “NDE accounts confirm that human volition exists on a spiritual level,” he doesn’t explain this. What is meant by “a spiritual level,” and what does it mean to say that “human volition exists on a spiritual level”? How is its existence discovered and identified, and how it determined that “human volition exists” in this realm? How is what Warden calls “a spiritual level” to be distinguished from something he might simply be imagining? He does not anticipate any of these concerns, let alone address them. Moreover, is Warden surreptitiously equating “spiritual” with “supernatural”? If not, what relevance does it have for his overall argument? If so, what justifies this equation? If something else is intended, where’s the explanation?

Also, Warden pits his argument specifically against materialism, making statements such as:

- “Quantum Physics Undermines Materialist Presuppositions” (specifically what “Materialist Presuppositions” does Warden have in mind, and how does QM undermine them?);

- “Metaphysically, materialists cannot account for human volition and free will” (does Warden understand why that’s the case?); and

- “The materialist view is logically inconsistent and in conflict with science and evidence of the supernatural.”

By doing this, Warden leaves open the possibility that other secular philosophies (of course I have in mind Objectivism, which, contrary to Warden’s uninformed understanding, is not a variant of materialism) provide cogent answers to the issues he raises, without resorting to the imaginative nonsense of supernaturalism (really, a god-of-the-gaps rationale which is so common among apologists).

Even when Warden tries to critique Objectivism in his blog, he fails to prove that any position affirmed by Objectivism is false or even wrongheaded. He simply assumes that Objectivism is wrong for disputing the Copenhagen interpretation of QM, and nowhere attempts to validate that interpretation in response to the points raised against it in the quotes he includes from Objectivists in his treatment of the matter. He illicitly equates rejection of the Copenhagen interpretation of QM with a rejection of proven science as such, even though he makes no attempt whatsoever to justify such an equation.

As for Warden’s preoccupation with so-called ‘near-death experiences’, notice how eager he is to use hearsay, extremely tenuous inferences and prejudice-laden leaps and bounds to interpret them as “evidence of the supernatural,” an move which he nowhere justifies.

Meanwhile, Warden nowhere addresses the concerns that I have raised, such as how one can reliably distinguish between what he calls “the supernatural” and what he may merely be imagining, or how what one imagines when he imagines Warden’s god (since I have no other means of apprehending it) can be anything other than merely imaginary.

I guess I’ll never fully understand, because I’m a man of reason, not of faith, and the gulf between the two is unbridgeable.

Regards,
Dawson

July 17, 2011 8:34 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “Can you find for me where I said Christianty teaches anyone to practice Religion?”

Why do you ask?

Nide: “Or am I misunderstanding you?”

What do you understand?

Regards,
Dawson

July 17, 2011 8:35 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Justin,

Welcome back! As always, I'm glad to see you participate in the mix.

You wrote: "My good friend the Dalillama and I have had some very constructive debates over how objectivism covers morality/ethics and I think the three ofb us might have a fruitfull discussion on the topic. He has been criticial of objectivism."

Sounds delicious! I'd be happy to review his criticisms. Feel free to e-mail me at: sortion@hotmail.com. Hopefully I'll be able to devote some time to it.

Regards,
Dawson

July 17, 2011 9:04 AM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

Hello Dawson, Its another great blog. Sorry I missed the last two days. I have some catching up to do. I was focused on technical analysis of the frigging Euro. Which economy is worse the US or EZ? Today it looks like Euro-US Dollar is headed a bit lower. But it the US congress fails to get a debt reduction plan passed, its Armageddon for the US Treasury Bond Market. If you still have assets in USD you probably should make plans to move your capital to a safer currency. But not Euros.

r_c321 mentioned I advised him to deconvert. I did. And I also told him to pray a prayer to himself. After all when a religious believer is praying to their imaginary god, they are only talking to their imagination and thus to a part of their own selves expressed as the imaginative part of their mind. r_c321 apparently thinks praying involves only talking to a divinity. But that is not so, when we talk to any person in an earnest sense we are praying to them. The definitions of pray include "to make earnest petition to (a person)." The context of my advice to r_c321 was in this sense and very clear from the context of my comments.

I do not wish to hide behind spelling or punctuation or diction issues while posturing in a passive aggressive fashion. So I will not chide or scold r_c321 for failing to look up a word. Perhaps I will include a definitions section in my postings for words that may seem vague if their context is not abundantly clear.

I will post later as I read through these many comments.

July 17, 2011 3:07 PM  
Blogger Rick Warden said...

Dear Dawson,

There haven't been any takers here to my recent challenge to come and refute my article:

How Identity, Logic and Physics Prove God's Existence

http://templestream.blogspot.com/2011/03/how-identity-logic-and-physics-prove.html

Seeing as I use a reference by Dean Sandin, which you personally supplied me, it seems you would be a likely candidate to refute the article.

It seems you like to hover over your own blog and don't venture out much into the great outdoors.

I've certainly covered a lot of mileage at your blog and it would not seem unreasonable to come and comment at someone else's blog.

I suppose I will just make it formal. I challenge you, Dawson, to come and refute my article if you believe you can.

Sadly, I've been challenging various atheists bloggers but finding all are reluctant to take up a friendly challenge.

I'm asking atheist bloggers to choose any personal photo they would prefer to be used at my blog as a reference along with their response to my challenge. Do you have any photo you would prefer?

Regards,

Rick

July 17, 2011 8:54 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

Rick, look up a few posts. I reposted my response on your blog too, are you not paying attention?

July 17, 2011 9:08 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Greetings, Robert, I am Happy to see you. Just to give you an update. I am still a Christian.

I have looked up the word prayer In two dictionaries and the definition that you have provided seems not to be there. Can you give the link to your source.

Thanks,
Hezekiah

July 17, 2011 9:17 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Rick: “There haven't been any takers here to my recent challenge to come and refute my article: How Identity, Logic and Physics Prove God's Existence”

Actually that’s not at all true. I saw several comments on your blog critiquing your argument, thus meeting your challenge. Also, as Dalillama rightly points out, he presented a point-by-point critique of your syllogism right here on my blog. He has pointed this out to you, and he has posted it in the comments section of your blog, too.

Rick: “Seeing as I use a reference by Dean Sandin, which you personally supplied me, it seems you would be a likely candidate to refute the article.”

Actually, I have already reacted to your post, pointing out how you have mishandled Sandin’s statement. This was back in March of this year – see my 17 March comment on this blog - I posted my reaction the very day you posted your blog. I don’t see that you have addressed the points I raised there.

Rick: “It seems you like to hover over your own blog and don't venture out much into the great outdoors.”

I hope your feelings aren’t too hurt. I have very little time for this, and plenty of activity to keep me occupied here at my blog. Moreover, I certainly have no obligation to participate on your blog. When I do “venture out into the great outdoors,” which I do on occasion, it probably wouldn’t be to your blog. You’ve already convinced me that you’re not up for reasoned dialogue.

Rick: “I suppose I will just make it formal. I challenge you, Dawson, to come and refute my article if you believe you can.”

I posted some additional criticisms to your argument in a comment I added here last night – scroll up to my comments directed to Dalillama (it’s datestamped July 17, 2011 8:34 AM – USWC time). I do not see that you have addressed the concerns that I’ve raised there, either.

See, that’s the thing, Rick. You post your opinion pieces, occasionally an argument, and when I post my response to it, you ignore it or seem not to see it – the outcome being that you don’t address the concerns that I raise. So why should I go knocking on your door? You obviously can’t come out and play.

At any rate, Rick, you’ve been answered. Chew on it, or lick your wounds. Take your pick.

Regards,
Dawson

July 17, 2011 9:38 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “I have looked up the word prayer In two dictionaries and the definition that you have provided seems not to be there. Can you give the link to your source.”

Here are two of the several definitions for the verb “to pray” found on Dictionary.com:

4. to make earnest petition to (a person).

8. to make entreaty or supplication, as to a person or for a thing.


Robert was correct: the definitions of pray do include the one he quoted.

Hope that helps.

Regards,
Dawson

July 17, 2011 9:44 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Thanks,
Friend

You mentioned in one of your writings that God causes mischief in men lives.

Can you give some examples or clarify your meaning.

Thanks,
Friend

July 17, 2011 10:11 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer?pagename=objectivism_intro

In particular number 3.

Would anyone like to clear things up.

Sounds like relativism to me.

July 17, 2011 10:58 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: "Would anyone like to clear things up. Sounds like relativism to me."

It's not relativism.

That should now be clear for you.

Regards,
Dawson

July 17, 2011 11:13 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Yes it is.

Your unwillingness to explain only shows it.
The philosophy of Satan would be a better name.
It's actually extremely destructive. Hence the problem of evil in the world.

Dr. Bahsen said it best. The unbeliever, since he was created in the image of God, is undeniably Religious.

Rand rejected God. Then created her own laws to live by.
If committing adultery on my wife makes me happy that would be perfectly fine with Rand.

1 John says " 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.

Rand's moral ideals are quite consisting with that scripture.

July 17, 2011 11:37 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

In regard to the Objectivist ethics, Nide wrote: “Sounds like relativism to me.”

I responded: “It’s not relativism.”

Nide now says: “Yes it is. Your unwillingness to explain only shows it.”

I’d be happy to explain, if I were persuaded that your inquiry were sincere. But I’m not persuaded that it is. So you don’t automatically get the benefit of the doubt.

Indeed, it seems you’re the one who needs to explain. For instance, when you make the remark that the Objectivist ethics “sounds like relativism,” you don’t explain yourself. When you’ve been corrected and informed that it is not relativism, you insist that it is, and yet you still do not explain yourself. You’re the one making the charge. The onus of proof is on you. So here’s where you should begin.

1) Tell us what you mean by “relativism.”

2) Tell us why you think Objectivist ethical theory “sounds like relativism.”

3) Tell us a) if you think relativism is good or bad, and b) *why* you think it is good or bad.

Nide: “The philosophy of Satan would be a better name.”

Objectivism does not recognize the existence of imaginary beings. Including Christianity’s “Satan.”

Nide: “It's actually extremely destructive.”

What specifically is “extremely destructive”? Destructive to what? How do you know?

Nide: “Hence the problem of evil in the world.”

Objectivism is not responsible for “the problem of evil in the world.” Irrational philosophy is. Including Christianity. Ydemoc already gave a good example of this. There are mountains more examples of it, stretching back thousands of years.

Nide: “Rand rejected God. Then created her own laws to live by.”

Rand created the laws of identity and causality? You give her way too much credit.

Nide: “If committing adultery on my wife makes me happy that would be perfectly fine with Rand.”

Why should Rand or anyone else care if you committed adultery on your wife?

Regards,
Dawson

July 18, 2011 12:38 AM  
Blogger Luis said...

Hi Dawson, thanks for your many fine articles. I've read them with great interest.

Would you please critique something I've written on my own blog? (when you have heaps of time, of course) It's about the impossibility of disembodied minds, and the necessity of the physical: here and here.

July 18, 2011 5:38 AM  
Blogger Luis said...

Well the links don't work, for whatever reason. Here they the urls: http://warofthewaves.blogspot.com/2010/08/my-journey-from-weak-to-strong-atheism.html and http://warofthewaves.blogspot.com/2011/07/primacy-of-physical.html

July 18, 2011 5:42 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Greetings, Sir

You said: I’d be happy to explain, if I were persuaded that your inquiry were sincere. But I’m not persuaded that it is. So you don’t automatically get the benefit of the doubt.

I said: No need to explain it's relativism like it or not.

1. Relativism:
A theory, especially in ethics or aesthetics, that conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but are relative to the persons or groups holding them.




2. Ok, It's evident that what makes me or you happy is quite different.

Qouting 3 from http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer?pagename=objectivism_intro

"The pursuit of his own rational self-interest and of his own happiness is the highest moral purpose of his life."

Are you suggesting that all men have the same interest or that all pursuits will make men equally happy?


3. Extremely bad. For example,
If breaking people's windows makes person x happy but not person y.
It's easy to see how destructive relativism is.

Sir, you said: "Objectivism does not recognize the existence of imaginary beings. Including Christianity’s “Satan.”

So, when you were trying to be a "Christian" did you think he was imaginary?


Sir you said: "Objectivism is not responsible for “the problem of evil in the world.” Irrational philosophy is. Including Christianity. Ydemoc already gave a good example of this. There are mountains more examples of it, stretching back thousands of years.

Exactly Rand's Philosophy.

Also, I answered Ydemoc's objections. The problem is you have no choice but to not make distinctions. If you did. It would be devastating to your position.
This is the only way you can convince yourself that your religious convictions are true.

Sir you said: "Rand created the laws of identity and causality? You give her way too much credit."

Hardly, Are you seriously suggesting that up to Rand people were not able to distinguish between what's real and imaginary?


Sir you said: "Why should Rand or anyone else care if you committed adultery on your wife?

That's my point. In a world where morality is relative their is complete chaos.

You are purposely and deliberately trying to blur the truth.

Like I said earlier you have no choice but to do this. In order to covince yourself that your worldview is true.

It's quite amazing because you made the charge the I was equating critical thinking with dishosnesty
but know you seem to be doing the same.

Can you explain yourself?

July 18, 2011 11:31 AM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

Nide: Rand rejected God. Then created her own laws to live by.

Dawson: Rand created the laws of identity and causality? You give her way too much credit.

Nide: Hardly, Are you seriously suggesting that up to Rand people were not able to distinguish between what's real and imaginary?

@r_c321, you sir fail at reading comprehension, or like most authoritarians, I suspect you have no ability to detect sarcasm.

July 18, 2011 12:00 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: "Also, I answered Ydemoc's objections. The problem is you have no choice but to not make distinctions. If you did. It would be devastating to your position.
This is the only way you can convince yourself that your religious convictions are true."

I don't recall labeling my questions to you as "objections." I will stand corrected if I've labeled my questions to you as "objections," but I don't think I've done this. To do so would be to place your position in the realm of reality. Right now, from a broad perspective (i.e, God belief) you're still in the world of the imaginary.

And my questions were intended expose the inconsistencies you hold and the selectivity you seem employ with regard to various biblical issues. Selectivity and inconsistency is inescapable when you start with something that is not real. To *paraphrase* one of Dawson's blog entries (to Chris Bolt, I believe) "On a leaky boat, one has to keep finding ways to "plug the holes."

As far as answering me, yes, you did. But the answers you gave were far from adequate, and I think the answers you gave reveal a great deal about how a holding a theistic worldview can lead to embracing a whole slew silly conclusions.

How would you, or the dictionary of your choice, define religion?

Ydemoc

July 18, 2011 12:09 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 12:14 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

@Dawson.

I think it is plain as day that r_c321 is a moral authoritarian. That for him, morality is the commanded and the obeyed. With the commands coming from an arbitrary ruler (god). I do not think he would even recognize a moral system based on the understood and the choosen. For him it is all "relative" if there is no god to spank you for disobeying the rules. Dalillama and I have had some interesting discussions on the nature of moral authoritians. R_C's most recent posts fall right into this mold of thought.

r_c321 "Sir you said: "Why should Rand or anyone else care if you committed adultery on your wife?

That's my point. In a world where morality is relative their is complete chaos."


This illustrates my point about how he views morality. Someone (god or other authority) has to tell you / command you that adulty is wrong. You cant figure this out for yourself and futher context is not important. The thing is wrong because.... well because god said so.

One of the discussions I had that I wish you could have witnessed was were Dilillama and myself informally debated game theory vs objective morality. The prisoner's dilemma was used as a model to logially deduce correct ethical behavior towards others. Dalillama's contension was that objectivism does not incorperate the lastest discoveries and insights into mans cognitive nature. It occurred to me that if that is the case, then Rand's moral argument could be valid but not sound. If some of the premises themselfs are not true. Regardless however weather we use game theory or Rand's moral model they are both at odds with moral authoritarism. Either Dalillama or myself will be working on a syllogism for you soon. Probably him, he is a much better writer:)

July 18, 2011 12:41 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

I'm working on it, but it's taking a bit of time, I'm having trouble digging up some of my references. I can put together something preliminary, but I rather expect that folks are going to want citations for my claims.

July 18, 2011 1:42 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc, your boat sank a long time ago.

It's your position that is imaginary.

As expected, your claiming that I wasn't adequate enough. What's new?

Justin, instead of the personal attacks. Why don't you use real arguments?

July 18, 2011 2:30 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “A theory... that conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but are relative to the persons or groups holding them.”

Where does Objectivism affirm that “conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but ar relative to the persons or groups holding them”?

Please, show me where Objectivism affirms this. You haven’t done so.

Nide: “2. Ok, It's evident that what makes me or you happy is quite different.”

Objectivism holds ‘happiness’ to be “the successful state of life” and defines it as “that state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of one’s values.” I seek to achieve “the successful state of life” because it is not automatic; it must be earned. Achieving my values makes me happy. This is the case for everyone I have ever known: those who achieve their values experience happiness; those who don’t know what their values are and/or frequently fail at achieving them, tend not to experience happiness. It’s the law of causality applied to human nature in the realm of values.

But you say that “what makes me or you happy is quite different.” Are you saying that achieving your values does not make you happy, or that achieving your values makes you the opposite of happy? Please explain.

If your point rests on a different understanding of happiness, then you’re not critiquing Objectivism; you’re simply saying that your view is different from Objectivism. That’s not a critique; we already know that your view is different.

Remember: the only alternative to Objectivism is some form of subjectivism.

[Continued...]

July 18, 2011 2:45 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

From ARI: "The pursuit of his own rational self-interest and of his own happiness is the highest moral purpose of his life."

Nide: “Are you suggesting that all men have the same interest or that all pursuits will make men equally happy?”

On a *general*level (and that’s what you’re probably missing – you’re thinking in terms of specifics, but philosophers have man’s *general nature* in mind when they define a moral code that is to fit all members of the category) , we all face the same fundamental alternative (namely life vs. death) and have the same needs (e.g., food, water, health, protection from threats, shelter, purpose, incentive to continue living, the prospect of happiness, etc.). We are all biological organisms, and Rand understood the importance of taking this fact into account when developing her moral theory. No man is exempt from his need for values in order to live. Man needs values in order to live; values are not the whims of an invisible magic being that faces no fundamental alternative, nor are they dictated by something that men can only imagine.

So on a *general level*, yes, we all have the same interest, if we adopt a rational approach to reality and living. That same general interest is: to live and enjoy our lives.

Of course, there are those who do not want us to live, and there are many who tolerate our existence but do not want us to enjoy our lives. But those individuals are not operating on a rational approach to reality and man's nature as a living organism which needs values in order to live. Don’t be surprised to find the influence of religion operating in these quadrants.

Nide: “3. Extremely bad. For example, If breaking people's windows makes person x happy but not person y. It's easy to see how destructive relativism is.”

Of course, citing examples like this betrays a most superficial understanding of values, happiness and man’s nature, as well as blatant unfamiliarity with Rand’s overall philosophy. It’s utterly childish to suppose that a philosopher set out to define a moral system based on adherence to reality, reason, man’s nature as a living organism and his need for values, and yet ended up with a view that essentially said: “if damaging other people’s property makes you happy, well by golly go do it!” More than any other philosophy, Objectivism embraces the ideas of private property and man’s prerogative to preserve his values (including things like windows). Unfortunately, citing examples like this only shows that the person citing them has confused morality with politics. Rand recognized that men need to be able to get along together. That’s the beauty of her moral philosophy when applied to interpersonal relationships (i.e., politics): it maintains loyalty to the fundamental premise that each individual has the right to exist for his own sake. Corollary to this is each individual’s right to his own property. Rand’s philosophy nowhere advocates the destruction of someone else’s property simply for the momentary thrill one might derive from it. If you think it does, you need to show where it does this, and you need to show how everything else she wrote about morality and politics allows for it. You won’t be able to do it.

So more epic failure from Nide in the philosophical detection department.

Regards,
Dawson

July 18, 2011 2:53 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I asked: "Why should Rand or anyone else care if you committed adultery on your wife?

NIde: “That's my point.”

What specifically is your point? I asked you a question. If you think people who don't even know you *should care* if you’ve committed adultery on your wife, please explain why. I’m open to considering your argument if you have one. But it doesn't appear that you have any arguments. Just thoughtless reactions.

Nide: “In a world where morality is relative their is complete chaos.”

So if someone is not concerned about a complete stranger’s personal affairs, the result is “complete chaos”? Is that what you’re getting at?

Nide: “You are purposely and deliberately trying to blur the truth.”

I asked you a question. There’s no attempt on my part to blur the truth. I'm giving you an opportunity to elaborate your position. Why not just re-read the question as I asked it, and give it some thought. If you have a worked out moral theory, you should be able to answer it.

Nide: “Like I said earlier you have no choice but to do this. In order to covince yourself that your worldview is true.”

I have no choice but to ask questions? I’m not sure what’s wrong with asking questions.

Regards,
Dawson

July 18, 2011 3:15 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ok, Sir

You said: Where does Objectivism affirm that “conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but ar relative to the persons or groups holding them”?

You asked for the definition of relativism I was simply giving it to you.

You said: "Objectivism holds ‘happiness’ to be “the successful state of life” and defines it as “that state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of one’s values.” I seek to achieve “the successful state of life” because it is not automatic; it must be earned. Achieving my values makes me happy. This is the case for everyone I have ever known: those who achieve their values experience happiness; those who don’t know what their values are and/or frequently fail at achieving them, tend not to experience happiness. It’s the law of causality applied to human nature in the realm of values.

Ok, How about if my values are lying,cheating,stealing, etc.

If those are my values Then according objectivism they will make me happy.

Is this correct?

You said: "So on a *general level*, yes, we all have the same interest, if we adopt a rational approach to reality and living. That same general interest is: to live and enjoy our lives.

Fine, I want to live but If I don't cheat on my wife I wont enjoy life can you help me?

You said: "Of course, citing examples like this betrays a most superficial understanding of values, happiness and man’s nature, as well as blatant unfamiliarity with Rand’s overall philosophy. It’s utterly childish to suppose that a philosopher set out to define a moral system based on adherence to reality, reason, man’s nature as a living organism and his need for values, and yet ended up with a view that essentially said: “if damaging other people’s property makes you happy, well by golly go do it!” More than any other philosophy, Objectivism embraces the ideas of private property and man’s prerogative to preserve his values (including things like windows). Unfortunately, citing examples like this only shows that the person citing them has confused morality with politics. Rand recognized that men need to be able to get along together. That’s the beauty of her moral philosophy when applied to interpersonal relationships (i.e., politics): it maintains loyalty to the fundamental premise that each individual has the right to exist for his own sake. Corollary to this is each individual’s right to his own property. Rand’s philosophy nowhere advocates the destruction of someone else’s property simply for the momentary thrill one might derive from it. If you think it does, you need to show where it does this, and you need to show how everything else she wrote about morality and politics allows for it. You won’t be able to do it.

Sadly, rand's philosphy doesn't solve the problem of evil as much as she would like it to.

Regardless of what rand thinks some people like destroying other peoples property. That is the sake of their life and there is nothing you or rand can do about it.

Looks like you are the one failing here my friend.

You said: "So if someone is not concerned about a complete stranger’s personal affairs, the result is “complete chaos”? Is that what you’re getting at?

Yes sir

July 18, 2011 4:29 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 5:19 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

oh by the way, the delay that Dalillama is facing getting to the sources for his argument is that the file server that they are on, that I am responsible for is down. So I have work to do, will be back tho:)

July 18, 2011 5:26 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

Modus ponens argument in the form if A,B and C then D. We have A, B and C therefor D.

premise 1: In the English language when a sentence ends with a question mark, the mark indicates that the person making the statement is not claiming it is fact but instead is asking if it is a fact or not.

premise 2: Additionally in the English language it is common to use a question in a rhetorician manor indicating sarcasm

premise 3: r_c321 failed to acknowledge the question nature of Dawson's reply. This is evidenced by his misconstruing the question as a statement of fact

Inference: Given the rules of English and given the nature of r_c321's response to what Dawson wrote, we can conclude that r_c321 failed to comprehend what he had read and or additionally does not understand sarcasm

Conclusion: r_c321 does not have an understanding of sarcasm and or has poor reading skills.

July 18, 2011 5:33 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

r_c321: " Robert has expressed his desire for me to convert to atheism."

You cannot convert to atheism for it is only an absence of a belief. However, as your god is false and your religion is based and founded upon lies, it is to your advantage and rational self-interest to deconvert from your silly version of Christianity and in the process adopt a more rational outlook on life. I suspect your confusion here is in assuming a package deal of anti-capitalist economic theory, pro-collectivist political hypotheses combined with secular humanism and logical positivism which you then call "atheism." I think this because in several of your messages you've referred to atheism as a religion. I think you would benefit from consulting a dictionary on the meaning of religion. Consider what dictionary.com lists for religion.

a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

Not believing either that your god or that of any other person actually exists or deriving comfort in the thought that any of the gods exist in factual reality does not constitute a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe

I hope you appreciate me for clearing up this confusion you have expressed about atheism and religion as well as for not taking the low road of snarky (a slang term meaning testy or irritable or short) insinuation as would have been the case if I had suggested you were ignorant or poorly educated for using these terms incorrectly.

July 18, 2011 5:42 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I asked: “Where does Objectivism affirm that ‘conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but are relative to the persons or groups holding them’?”

Nide: “You asked for the definition of relativism I was simply giving it to you.”

Yes, I did ask this. And I asked this because you charge Objectivism with moral relativism. Now that you’ve given your definition of ‘relativism’, it’s time to examine the record and find where Objectivism affirms relativism as you’ve defined it. Since you don’t seem to be able to find any point in Objectivist teachings which affirms that “conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but are relative to the persons or groups holding them,” then apparently you’re unable to sustain your charge. Care to rethink your position? I’m betting not.

Nide: “Ok, How about if my values are lying,cheating,stealing, etc.”

What part of rational self-interest do you not understand? Clearly it’s the rational part. Or, perhaps you think lying, cheating and stealing are rational. That would only implicate your own worldview, Nide.

Nide: “If those are my values Then according objectivism they will make me happy.”

Again, you only show your lack of familiarity with and understanding of Objectivism. You’re trying to defeat it before you know the fullness of its teachings. Very unwise move. As I mentioned in my previous response to you, Objectivism recognizes that happiness needs to be earned. Lying, cheating and stealing are all hallmarks of the man who seeks the unearned. Such persons will never achieve what Objectivism defines as happiness. On Objectivist terms, happiness is not a fleeting sensation of pleasure. Perhaps it is on your view, but again you’re not critiquing Objectivism at that point. You’re just displaying your own intellectual deficiencies.

Nide: “Fine, I want to live but If I don't cheat on my wife I wont enjoy life can you help me?”

It is not in my own interest to help you, Nide. You’re on your own.

Nide: “Sadly, rand's philosphy doesn't solve the problem of evil as much as she would like it to.”

What specifically do you mean by “the problem of evil,” what rational basis do you have for supposing it is a real problem in the world that men need to deal with, why do you think men need to deal with it, and what is your proposed solution to this problem? What is your argument that Objectivism does not solve it?

Nide: “Regardless of what rand thinks some people like destroying other peoples property.”

Rand understood this very clearly, having escaped the Soviet Union in the 1920s. Rand’s philosophy nowhere denies the fact that some people seek to destroy other people’s values. One of Rand’s points in this regard is that a philosophy which teaches men to sacrifice their values is only going to appease those who seek to destroy values. She called it the sanction of the victims. Christianity is the chief culprit of this problem in the western world, for it expressly advocates self-sacrifice. Those who accept the view that they have a duty to sacrifice themselves for the sake of others, or for the sake of something they can only imagine, have no philosophical basis for acting in the interest of preserving their own values. That could only be condemned as being "selfish," and people who want you to sacrifice your values will seek to make you feel guilty for being selfish.

Regards,
Dawson

July 18, 2011 5:48 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Justin and Delilamma you are both geniuses.

You also make laugh really hard.

Not sure why you continue to bug me.






Acts 4: "Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, 9 if we are being examined today concerning a good deed done to a crippled man, by what means this man has been healed, 10 let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. 11 This Jesus [1] is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. [2] 12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

July 18, 2011 5:50 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Dawson wrote, regarding a comment by r_c321: "So if someone is not concerned about a complete stranger’s personal affairs, the result is “complete chaos”? Is that what you’re getting at?"

r_c321 replied: "Yes sir"


r_c321's reply reminds me of the response I got from a Christian when I asked how he would define "love."

His answer was, "Doing something for someone that he (the Christian) determines to be in someone's (the Christian's loved one) self-interest."

Got that? The Christian determines what is in someone else's self-interest. Not the person him or herself, but the Christian.

Ydemoc

July 18, 2011 5:51 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

I made it back again. Ha. LOL. Now for a little fun.

Dawson your comment here next is a thing of beauty.
For one, my philosophy is not a religion. A religion is a primitive form of philosophy, a pre-rational, pre-scientific attempt to explain existence and the human condition which is rooted in the primacy of consciousness. My philosophy cannot be rightly classed as a religion because it is rational and scientific, and it is rooted explicitly and self-consciously on the primacy of existence.


r_c321: Regarding the doctrine of hell. This is a later idea grafted onto early Christianity post Paul and Jewish war. Listen to the Bible Geek podcast on iTunes. Price's web site and link to his Bible Geek podcast is at Robert M Price

BTW, Robert Eisenman makes the best case for a historical Jesus I've read so far, and it ain't the gospel Jesus. GJ is a fictional literary composition loosely based on a first century Galilaean Hellenistic Cynic sage and probably a different but concurrent Jewish nationalist-Nasoraean-zealot-Messianic cult preacher who was possibly the brother of James the Just, first Bishop of Jerusalem and leader of Christianity prior to the 1st Jewish war.

Yedemoc: Gosh. That's funny stuff. No wonder I like reading blogs so much.

Justin: Good question. How can I distinguish that it (r_c321's threat of hell) is reality from what you might just be imagining. Take note, simply repeating the claim does not help matters.

July 18, 2011 7:17 PM  
Blogger ActionJackson864 said...

Robert Said:

"Dawson your comment here next is a thing of beauty. "

I agree...this is my Quote of the day below:

"Objectivism recognizes that happiness needs to be earned. Lying, cheating and stealing are all hallmarks of the man who seeks the unearned. Such persons will never achieve what Objectivism defines as happiness."

Awesome.

July 18, 2011 7:28 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

Back to the Hell thing r_c321 was hammering on a couple of days ago. I'm curious how r_c reconciles the notion of an all loving god with the doctrine of predestination. I recall asking him about his thoughts on the matter of doctrine of predestination as in Romans 9:17-18 and Mark 4:12 and a bunch of other Bible verses.

r_c321, if its predestination, as seems to be the case and as argued by the Calvinists, then why bother attempting to proselytize?

July 18, 2011 7:35 PM  
Blogger Rick Warden said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 7:45 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

Ydemoc said...
"r_c321,

A quick question for you: As I understand it, if one blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, then that is considered an unforgivable sin, right?

But if the Holy Spirit is Jesus and God at the same time, and I blaspheme against God, aren't I also blaspheming against the Holy Spirit, too?

I'm confused."


Read the whole pericope in Mark 3:22-30 again.

Mark 3:22-30
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
22 The scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “He casts out the demons by the ruler of the demons.” 23 And He called them to Himself and began speaking to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? 24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 26 If Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but he is finished! 27 But no one can enter the strong man’s house and plunder his property unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house.

28 “Truly I say to you, all sins shall be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they utter; 29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”— 30 because they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.”


To blaspheme the HS one must accuse Jesus of being possessed by a demon. To do this a person must believe in demons, Jesus, the holy spook, and the whole friggin deal. Only people like r_c321 can do this.

More importantly though, this passage shows an Adoptionist Christology as this pericope assumes Jesus exorcising demons via the Holy Sprit. In the story of Jesus' baptism by John the Baptist is clearly seen Adoptionist Christology as well. There the Holy Spirit entered into Jesus at the time of his baptism and he then becomes "My Beloved Son" according to the voice from heaven that only Jesus could hear. r_c321 holds the Christological view that Jesus was prexistent as the Divine Logos of Yahweh as in the Prologue of Gospel according to John. This is just another of the many contradictions saturating the Bible.

July 18, 2011 7:54 PM  
Blogger Rick Warden said...

Dear Dawson,

A person with the tag of Dalai Lama came to my blog as your surrogate. He (or she) believed he has taken up my challenge to you in your place. If you are not satisfied with his arguments, you should probably come over quickly. Your philosophical honor is in jeopardy.

However, based on your blog silence, I bet you are carefully crafting your own article for your own blog in response.

Have you ever commented on another person's blog, Dawson?

Again, you've been challenged to come over and debate this article. Some kind of response would be helpful. And a personal photo to go along with your response would be even more helpful.

I'm compiling a list of atheist blogger/philosophers/authorities who I've challenged to come over and refute my article. But, so far, the atheist responses have been very wanting.

When people build themselves up as experts, I guess there is a lot to lose in making such an attempt. If atheism is true, it really shouldn't be much of a problem.

Regards,

Rick

July 18, 2011 7:54 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

I'm getting tired, and I'm such a friggin bag-o-wind. I'm gonna go take a nap. Good night all and best wishes too.

July 18, 2011 7:55 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Robert Bumbalough wrote: "Gosh. That's funny stuff. No wonder I like reading blogs so much."

Thank you, Robert. I'm glad you liked it (I'm assuming you're referring to the whole "Gosh" "Heck" thing.)

And thank you for your input on my question regarding blaspheming the Holy Spirit.

I check your blog from time to time, and also see you posting here and at Debunking. I always enjoy your writings.

Ydemoc

July 18, 2011 8:08 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 8:29 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

@Rick

"A person with the tag of Dalai Lama came to my blog as your surrogate. He (or she) believed he has taken up my challenge to you in your place. If you are not satisfied with his arguments, you should probably come over quickly. Your philosophical honor is in jeopardy."

You could not be more wrong. Dalillama got involved in this as a result of some heated debates we had over objectivism. Specifically how it deals with morality. Dalilama is very much not a objectivist and has argued against them forcefully. He is however an atheist and your challenge was to any atheist on this blog. You posted after he did thus he qualifies. Why do you not interact with his argument. If you were so hot to trot to argue with an objectivist you should have worded your challenge differently.

July 18, 2011 8:31 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 8:40 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

@r_c321

"Justin and Delilamma you are both geniuses.

You also make laugh really hard.

Not sure why you continue to bug me."

I made a claim that your reading skills were lacking. You rightfully called me on it and asked for an argument. I provided it. See how this works. Someone makes a claim, it is up to them to argue for it. If the person making the claim can not do so, he has no justification to ask others to make an argument for why they should ignore you. Your lack of argument is the only reason they need. after what has to be almost 150 posts I still have not seen you produce an argument for gods existence or an argument for the bible provided a model for concept formation and validation. I guess you expect me to just believe on your say so or the bibles.

July 18, 2011 8:42 PM  
Blogger Nide Corniell said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 8:52 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ok, Sir

You said: Yes, I did ask this. And I asked this because you charge Objectivism with moral relativism............................................... Care to rethink your position? I’m betting not.

Not for a second. Its relativism repackaged.


Sir, you said: What part of rational self-interest do you not understand? Clearly it’s the rational part. Or, perhaps you think lying, cheating and stealing are rational. That would only implicate your own worldview, Nide.

Who made you a judge?

It's ok for you to condemn liars etc.
But not God. Simply Amazing!!!!!!!!

Sir, you said: You’re just displaying your own intellectual deficiencies.

Of course if you cant beat the argument beat the man. It goes back to the prohets, then our great God and Savior the Lord Jesus, then the discples and to today which is presently happening.


You said: What specifically do you mean by “the problem of evil,” what rational basis do you have for supposing it is a real problem in the world that men need to deal with, why do you think men need to deal with it, and what is your proposed solution to this problem? What is your argument that Objectivism does not solve it?

Watch the news.
The Goodness of Jesus Christ.
Because there is still evil.

I reject everything rand says.


Ydemoc,

Actually that is the wrong defenition of love.
God is love.
Helping someone is the manifestation of God's love,

I assure you my friend that if you were bleeding out somewhere on the street or were starving to death.
and I offered help your philosopy would go out the window. Easier said than done.

So, Your boat just sank a little deeper.

Robert, your a nice guy. I have no desire to quarrell with you. If I have offended you I apologize.

but You have been making some really wild accusations. I really would live to give a response
but if I have 5 people asking me 10 questions at once. It's gonna take time.

If you want link me to your blog.

July 18, 2011 8:53 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Justin, Exactly.

July 18, 2011 8:54 PM  
Blogger Mad Hatter said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 8:58 PM  
Blogger Dalillama said...

So, Rick, are you acknowledging that you have no response to my extensive critique on your alleged logic? You came here with an open challenge to atheists, and I responded. I am currently formulating a critique of certain Objectivist principles to discuss with Dawson, who I beleive will engage me in honest debate on the subject. By contrast, you appear to be unwilling or unable to engage me in any type of discussion, here or on your home turf, presumably because your intellectual cowardice prohibits you from engaging in debate against anything but your carefully constructed strawmen.

July 18, 2011 9:02 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

@r_c321

"Justin, Exactly."

Are we in agreement that the burden of proof is on the one making a claim or our we in agreement that you expect me to just believe you, solely on your say so or the bible's without argumentation?

or for that matter both points?

July 18, 2011 9:11 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Justin,

Let me read to you some verses.

Mark 10:  17And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?

 18And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.

 19Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother.

 20And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth.

 21Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me.

 22And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.

 23And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!

July 18, 2011 9:22 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Justin what kind or type of evidence would you accept?
I hope is not a body because you won't find it. Jesus is Risen.

July 18, 2011 9:34 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Hello, r_c321.

To borrow a classic from the archived writings of Dawson Bethrick, "Again you come back to me."

r_c321 wrote: "Actually that is the wrong defenition [sic] of love. God is love.

One can only love that for which one has deep affection for. And one can on have deep affection for something or someone one values. As Rand rightly points out,

"Love, friendship, respect, admiration are the emotional response of one man to the virtues of another, the spiritual payment given in exchange for the personal, selfish pleasure which one man derives from the virtues of another man’s character..." (Ayn Rand Lexicon (Online); “The Objectivist Ethics,” The Virtue of Selfishness, 31.)

The non-existent cannot be anything. But even using your definition, how is it that love (God) creates evil? Your God did create everything, did it not? It created, governs, maintains every thing and every moment, does it not?

r_c321 wrote: "Helping someone is the manifestation of God's love,"

Would you have helped Osama bin Laden escape to safety? Would God have wanted you to help him? Or if you were one of the Navy Seals, would you have "double-tapped" him?
If you would've saved him, what kind of love is that? To save someone who so clearly deserved to be eliminated. Given your belief, you no matter how you handled that situation, you probably would've rationalized it away.

r_c321 wrote: "I assure you my friend that if you were bleeding out somewhere on the street or were starving to death. and I offered help your philosopy [sic] would go out the window. Easier said than done. So, Your boat just sank a little deeper."

One's philosophy really never goes out the window, no matter what happens. What changes in an emergency situation like the one you describe is the application of that philosophy. Please see, "The Ethics of Emergencies,” The Virtue of Selfishness, p. 47 (also available online at http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/emergencies.html)

By the way, for all you know, I could be bleeding or starving now. Where are you r_c321!

If you helped me, I would be grateful to you, and I would seek to repay you as a way of showing my gratitude. At least in that case I would be expressing my gratitude and giving thanks to someone that exists, i.e., you. And not some invisible magic being.

Ydemoc

July 18, 2011 9:37 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

Thank you for your gratitude.

1. I reject everything rand says.

2. Osama bin laden? You live by the sword you die by the sword.

3. God is not the creator of evil.
God is sovereign over evil.
Why did god allow for evil? I have no idea.

God doesn't create robots.
Men have choices. That they freely choose.
God has every right to hold men accountable for those choices.

Thanks

July 18, 2011 9:55 PM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

well even if he had not, after 2,000 years, what body? No something more basic, how about collaborating historical records from that time by the Romans. However far more fundamental is you would have to show that a subjective metaphysical universe is even possible in principle. If you don't understand what this means, I suggest you read

http://www.strongatheism.net/library/atheology/argument_from_existence/

Dawson has also written a lot of this issue. You should take the time to at least understand it if not agree with it, for it is central to why objectivists reject god claims.

But heck ill start with Roman records, and no Josephus does not count, there is real doubt about weather its a forgery or not. Tacitus also does not count as he only reported what the followers of Christ believed and in any case both wrote many years after the events in the gospels were supposed to take place.

Also why do you keep quoting bible verses at me, they hold no special power over me. I take it you think I should just accept them without critical thought, is this so?

Ill check in tomorrow, I had am worn out from fixing the file server and need my rest. I realize this is completely off topic, but I just have to say this, Slackware Linux is a time vampire!

July 18, 2011 10:02 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Justin,

I quote scripture to you because faith comes by hearing the word of god. You need to get saved. No man is promised tomorrow.



I will check your link asap

Roman records?

And what would these records exactly have to say?

This is why I am not an evidentialist. Any evidence given will be rejected by the unbeliever.

July 18, 2011 10:15 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 18, 2011 10:41 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Rick wrote: “A fellow with the tag of Dalai Lama came to my blog as your surrogate.”

No, not as my “surrogate.” Dalillama posted on your blog completely on his own. I had nothing to do with it.

Rick: “He believed he has taken up my challenge to you in your place.”

I somehow doubt Dalillama thought he was doing something specifically in my stead. What makes you think he's some kind of emissary of mine?

Rick: “If you are not satisfied with his arguments, you should probably come.”

As I already mentioned, I have posted some responses to your argument already. I don’t see where you’ve addressed the concerns I’ve raised. So I’m not sure why you’re making such a big deal over all this. You clearly don’t seem interested in actually debating anything, for you’re not even defending your position against the brief criticisms I’ve already published.

Rick: “Your philophical honor is in jeopardy.”

What is “philophical honor”? I’m not familiar with that expression.

Rick: “However, based on your blog silence,”

“…blog silence…”? Clearly you must have your “internet ears” clogged. I’ll say it one more time: I’ve already raised some important concerns in response to portions of your argument. You haven’t even responded to Dalillama’s criticisms so far as I’ve seen. Indeed, it seems that you’re the one who’s silent on the very issue you’re making so much noise about!

Rick: “I bet you are carefully crafting your own article for your own blog in response.”

Really I'd love to, Rick, but in fact I’m extremely busy with other things. You have no idea how many e-mails I get everyday requesting me to give my response to this or that argument (I'm sorry to inform you that no one's come to me yet about yours). The volume of my workload is never-ending. It’s enough to make an atheologian want to take up knitting. So many are after my time. I have to prioritize. Unfortunately you don’t make the grade.

Rick: “Have you ever commented on another person's blog, Dawson?”

Why does this even matter?

Rick: “Again, you've been challenged to come over and debate this article. Some kind of response would be helpful.”

Did you not see my response? If you didn’t see it, hit ctrl-f and search for the word “preoccupation”. Your first hit will fetch you the comment I posted raising several objections to your argument.

Rick: “ And as I mentioned, a photo to go along with your response would be even more helpful.”

How would a photo accompanying my response be “even more helpful”? What does it help?

You strike me as one very frivolous person, Rick Warden.

Regards,
Dawson

July 18, 2011 11:45 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I wrote: “Yes, I did ask this. And I asked this because you charge Objectivism with moral relativism. Now that you’ve given your definition of ‘relativism’, it’s time to examine the record and find where Objectivism affirms relativism as you’ve defined it. Since you don’t seem to be able to find any point in Objectivist teachings which affirms that “conceptions of truth and moral values are not absolute but are relative to the persons or groups holding them,” then apparently you’re unable to sustain your charge. Care to rethink your position? I’m betting not.”

Nide quoted this, but left out the portion in italics. Then he stammered: “Not for a second. Its relativism repackaged.”

Again, Nide shirks another opportunity to show us where Objectivism affirms relativism as he’s defined it. He has modified his claim somewhat now, saying it’s “relativism repackaged.” But still he does not present any analysis showing why he thinks this. Perhaps he just wants it to be the case, and, given his allegiance to the primacy of consciousness, expects reality to just conform to his wishing, just as his worldview teaches that the world conforms to his god’s wishes. Nide’s conundrum is that, if he claims that Objectivism is relativistic apart from anyone’s wishes, denials, emotional outbursts, etc., then he’s in effect borrowing from Objectivism, for he’s making use of the primacy of existence principle, a principle against which his own worldview is fundamentally opposed. As Nide has stated for the record: “I reject everything [R]and says.” Rand says that existence holds metaphysical primacy in the subject-object relationship. By announcing his sweeping generalization, Nide is saying that he rejects this view of reality, which can only mean he thinks that reality conforms to wishing – i.e., that consciousness holds metaphysical primacy in the subject-object relationship.

No wonder he’s so mixed up!

Nide: “Who made you a judge?”

I did, by choosing to think. I don’t need to wait for someone else to judge things for me. I have a mind. I use it. Even if Christians disapprove. There’s nothing you can do about this.

Incidentally, since you “reject everything [R]and says,” you must reject certain facts which she affirmed, such as the fact that man has a mind, that he possesses consciousness, that values are a real human need, that one needs to act in order to achieve and/or preserve those values that he needs to live, that wishing won’t make it so, etc. All these facts Nide rejects, because Rand affirmed them, for he has gone on record saying “I reject everything [R]and says.” Amazing!

Nide: “It's ok for you to condemn liars etc.”

What’s wrong with that?

Nide: “But not God. Simply Amazing!!!!!!!!”

The imaginary cannot judge – imaginary things don’t really exist, Nide. Imaginary things don’t have minds.

Nide: “Of course if you cant beat the argument beat the man.”

Nide, you’ve not presented any arguments. For instance, you’ve charged Objectivism with relativism, and yet you’ve produced no *argument* which supports this charge. I’m guessing you never really heard of Objectivism prior to your involvement on this blog. You certainly don’t demonstrate any informed understanding of it. Since you continue to speak in ignorance, why is it wrong to point this out?

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 1:33 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

In response to Rick Warden, Justin wrote: “You could not be more wrong. Dalillama got involved in this as a result of some heated debates we had over objectivism. Specifically how it deals with morality. Dalilama is very much not a objectivist and has argued against them forcefully…”

Rick Warden seems painfully anxious for me to post a picture of myself and comments in response to his syllogism over on his blog. But it’s the dishonesty of comments like those to which Justin responded above, that disincline me from making more effort to dialogue with him.

Indeed, it seems that if he wanted a sincere dialogue with me, he’d demonstrate that desire anywhere he engaged me, whether on his own blog, or right here on mine. In my blog entry above, I presented a proof that his god does not exist. And yet he comes over to my blog, posts a series of characteristically anemic taunts, insisting that I come over to his blog to interact with an argument of his, while ignoring the far more direct and to-the-point argument that I have presented on my blog.

Additionally, Rick seems to have a fetish for my blogging activity, particularly in regard to my activity on other blogs. He asked “Have you ever commented on another person's blog, Dawson?” Over on his own blog, in a comment he posted in response to Dalillama, Rick wrote (speaking of me):

“He prefers to write his own articles as a response to other articles. That helps to put him in a good light. But hiding behind one’s own articles and never venturing beyond the borders of one's own blog is a sign of great philosophical weakness.”

Statements like this are utterly baffling to me. What could it possibly matter to anyone whether I post comments on other blogs or not? I run my own blog: is it wrong to write my own blog articles in response to things I’ve seen on the net? I prefer to have quick access to what I publish on the internet. That’s one reason why I have a blog in the first place. Access would be very tedious if my writings were spread throughout the www. Plus, other sites shut down, and then any comments I may have posted there will no longer be accessible.

But in fact I have on many occasions posted on other blogs, including numerous Christian blogs. For instance:

http://debunkingatheists.blogspot.com

http://www.choosinghats.com/

http://aristophrenium.com

http://barrywallace.wordpress.com

These are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head. I have of course posted on many non-Christian blogs as well, but I’m guessing Rick will say those don’t count.

The problem with commenting on many Christian blogs is that their owners screen comments before allowing them to be published. I’ve had many comments withheld for unstated reasons. Choosing Hats, in fact, used to be a great place to comment. But they radically changed their comments policy and won’t debate issues with non-Christian readers in their blog entries the last I checked.

But it’s true that I tend to hang out at my blog most often. Why not? That’s where the action is! And folks like Rick seem willing to come to me. Why should I go to them?

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 5:00 AM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Hello, r_c321,

(This is an edited version of my previously deleted comment.)

r_c321 wrote: "Thank you for your gratitude."

Quite telling that you would be thanking me for my gratitude toward you for coming to my aid in a hypothetical (read: imaginative) scenario. Though, in reality, you haven't done anything for me that warrants me thanking you, nor you me - with the possible exception being that you've helped me sharpen my writing skills where theists are concerned. Thanks!

r_c3211 wrote: "I reject everything rand says."

Do you think there is a reality? Are you conscious? Do you exist? Does A = A? If something exists, does some *thing* exist? Do things that exist refuse to conform to your thinking, e.g, wishing doesn't make it so?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then your statement "I reject everything rand says" is clearly false.


r_c321 wrote: "2. Osama bin laden? You live by the sword you die by the sword."

This really doesn't answer my question. My question pertained to your assertion that "helping someone is a manifestation of God's love." So it appears you are, again displaying a predictable inconsistency. How do you square "live by the sword, die by the sword" with the idea that "God is Love" or that "helping someone is a manifestation of God's love"?

r_c321 wrote: "3. God is not the creator of evil. God is sovereign over evil.


What particular version of the bible are you getting this from? The King James and others clearly have Isaiah 45:7 as stating:

"I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things." KJV

Perhaps the King James is outdated. Well, then too bad for all those who relied on it in years gone by, eh?

r_c321 wrote: "Why did god allow for evil? I have no idea."

Yes, this little dandy seems to be a tough one to explain away. You may as well say, "Why did Osama bin Laden *allow* his followers to fly jet airliners into the Twin Towers? I have no idea - but, hey, at least he didn't create evil! He only *allowed* it."

To paraphrase Dawson, as he put it recently in his blog entry on evil, "God has a cozy relationship with evil." ("Some Thoughts on Presuppositionalism and the Problem of Evil" - October 22, 2010)

Indeed!

r_c321 wrote: "God doesn't create robots. Men have choices. That they freely choose. God has every right to hold men accountable for those choices."

According to your worldview, who created everything? Who put into motion the very idea and capability of humans "choosing" anything - from selecting the apple in the garden to making a left turn on Sunset Blvd.?

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 6:45 AM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Ydemoc wrote: “To paraphrase Dawson, as he put it recently in his blog entry on evil, ‘God has a cozy relationship with evil.’ (‘Some Thoughts on Presuppositionalism and the Problem of Evil’ - October 22, 2010)”

Gee, that’s almost quotable!

But it’s true, so far as Christianity characterizes its god and handles the problem of evil. Greg Bahnsen comes out plainly and says that “God has a morally sufficient reason for the evil which exists” (Always Ready, p. 172). Curiously, Bahnsen never clues us in on what that “morally sufficient reason” might be. He does not even explain how such a notion is even philosophically coherent. If Bahnsen himself did not know what that reason is, how could he know that it’s “morally sufficient”? What exactly is he calling “morally sufficient”? Even he did not know. If he did know what that reason is, why didn’t he inform his readers?

This is the stuff of faith. It is "the determination that there is a god no matter what the evidence may be" (Richard Robinson, An Atheist’s Values). Rand rightly pointed out that “to rest one's case on faith means to concede that reason is on the side of one's enemies - that one has no rational arguments to offer." (Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, p. 197.)

According to Bahnsen and many other Christians, the Christian god is characterized as actually using evil to achieve its goals. And yet we are told that this being which uses evil to achieve its goals is the origin of morality, the “standard” of the good, an “all-good” being which does no evil and is not contaminated by any guilt, etc. No one has been able to explain to me how a being which chooses to employ evil means to achieve its ends can be rightly and coherently considered “good.” (In fact, I don’t think any Christian has really tried to explain this to me, once I put the matter in these terms.) How is it “good” to use evil means to achieve one’s ends? (Of course, this doesn’t even begin to raise the question of whether it’s coherent to suppose that an immortal, indestructible and perfect being could have any goals or ends in the first place!)

Nide wrote: "God doesn't create robots. Men have choices. That they freely choose. God has every right to hold men accountable for those choices."

Unless Christians think their god is a robot, then obviously they grant the notion that a free agent can *always* choose to do good and abstain from evil.

But even worse: According to the myth of Adam’s fall, Adam freely chose to transgress the Christian god’s commandment, thereby introducing sin on the human race. Regardless of how one wants to characterize this (whether it’s rightly called “original sin” or by some other moniker), the story can only mean that Adam was created without perfect judgment. If Adam chose to disobey perfect commandments, then clearly he was operating on imperfect judgment. But this can only mean that Adam was created with an imperfection, namely imperfect judgment. So the problem traces back to Adam’s creator: a perfect creator creates only perfection; it never creates any imperfection. If it created any imperfection, the creator could not rightly be called “perfect.” And yet here we have Adam choosing imprudently to disobey his lord and master, and yet Christians want to tell us that his creator is “perfect.” It’s just another jumble of contradictions, either way you slice it.

No wonder Christians need faith! Their worldview is utterly irrational!

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 8:45 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

You said: "Do you think there is a reality? Are you conscious? Do you exist? Does A = A? If something exists, does some *thing* exist? Do things that exist refuse to conform to your thinking, e.g, wishing doesn't make it so?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then your statement "I reject everything rand says" is clearly false."

So, are you seriously suggesting that up to Rand no one was able to distinguish the real from the imaginary?

If you say yes not only will you be making a false statement. But will also be reducing yourself to utter absurdity.Your choice.

You continued: "This really doesn't answer my question. My question pertained to your assertion that "helping someone is a manifestation of God's love." So it appears you are, again displaying a predictable inconsistency. How do you square "live by the sword, die by the sword" with the idea that "God is Love" or that "helping someone is a manifestation of God's love"?"

I really think your confused.

Is God under any obligation to stop a wicked sinner from carrying out the desires of his heart?

Do you think ,Ydemoc, that what bin laden got was loving or unloving?

Are you saying that God is unloving because he lets rebel sinners die in their wickedness?

Please I would love to know.

You quoted 45:7 from the KJV is their a particular reason?

You said: "According to your worldview, who created everything? Who put into motion the very idea and capability of humans "choosing" anything - from selecting the apple in the garden to making a left turn on Sunset Blvd.?

God created everyting.
However, God doesn't force men to do things.

How do you choose what you choose?

If you insist that God forces men to do things I would ask you to find an example.

July 19, 2011 9:02 AM  
Blogger Luis said...

''According to your worldview, who created everything? Who put into motion the very idea and capability of humans "choosing" anything - from selecting the apple in the garden to making a left turn on Sunset Blvd.?''

What do you mean ''who''? Notice how you're trying to affirm from the outset that which is under dispute: that God (a ''who'') created everything. Did it occur to you to ask ''what'' instead?

July 19, 2011 9:02 AM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Hello, Luis
welcome

Ydemoc did you mena God?

Dawson said:


"No wonder Christians need faith! Their worldview is utterly irrational!

Who was decived eve or adam?

How about if it was eve that had imperfect judgment?

I am not holding to this but only for the sake of argument.

Dawson you love to talk.
So, let me ask you a question.

let me create a scenario for you

Let's say person x was a rebellious wicked sinner and was on his way to harm a child.

Person y is just as wicked and is looking to rob someone even if it means taking their life. However, he is a little hesistant.

God knowing that person x would kill the child removes the restrainsts from person y.

That is all God needs to do. Men are not as wicked as they can be.

Person y spots x and decides to rob him and ends up killing him.

The child's life is saved.
Person x never made it.


Is God "bad' for doing this?

July 19, 2011 10:00 AM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 19, 2011 10:50 AM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

r_c321: When we think of the good, we think of appropriateness for some purpose. The idea of the good presupposes supporting premises entailing "good for what' and 'good for whom'. On divine command theory, however as Layman wrote, the good is whatever the divinity (or those who speak in its name) proclaim to be the good.

"What can the divine command theorist mean by saying that God is good (and hence would not approve of torture)? In general, to say that something is good is to say that it meets certain relevant standards. A good painting meets aesthetic standards; a good knife is one that cuts well; a good father is one that can be expected to behave in certain specified ways. A good Deity, then, is presumably one whose acts accord with certain standards. This is not to say that creatures set the standards. Of course they do not. It is merely to say that there must be some standards for the expression 'God is good' to have any content. But on the divine command view it seems there must be some standards for the expression 'God is good' to have any content. But on the divine command view it seems that there are no such standards. To say that God is good is apparently to say that God approves of His own acts, or that He wills whatever acts He performs. So, how can the divine command theorist confidently assert that God would not approve of torture since He is good? If God did approve of torture (rape, theft, etc.), He would still be good from the point of view of the divine command theory." ~ C. Stephen Layman, The Shape of the Good: Christian Reflections on the Fondation of Ethics (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame, 1991), p. 39. (quote provided by Infidels.org quote of the minute applet on their main web home page)

The theodicy you're describing wherein you portray your god as having a morally sufficient reason to allow humans to commit violent crimes against others, like all other theodicies, is intended to nullify the deity's culpability for harm and suffering to humans attending human immorality. Morality includes concepts of responsibility and culpability. By stripping the deity of R and C, the theological apologist also strips the object of their worship of moral authority. That's the problem with theodicies. They render the associated god concept morally neuter as does the idea that god dictates what is good. Consider the following.

1. There is evil/suffering.
2. A god is morally righteous/omnibenevolent.
3. Either:
a. A god can create a universe without evil/suffering.
b. There is an explanation for all evil/suffering. (With a theodicy.)
c. There is no explanation for some evil/suffering.

4. If 3a. or 3c. is true, then there is no god. This point represents the usual Problems of Evil.

5. If 3b. is true, then all evil/suffering is justified.

6. If 3b. is true, then all human evil is justified. (from 5)

7. If all our actions can be justified, then there is no more morality. We can rationalize the worst crimes.

8. If 3b. is true, then there is no morality. (from 6 and 7)

The Immorality of Theodicies

Acts of asserting theodicies constitutes attempts to negate morality.

July 19, 2011 11:02 AM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 19, 2011 11:26 AM  
Blogger Justin Hall said...

@robert

I really like your constuction of the argument for the problem of evil. I rarely use the arugument from evil, prefering instead the primary argument from existence, but your example is well put. Thanks:)

@r_c321

sorry r_c I am at work and dont have much time, I plan to give a lengthy response to your last post directed at me when I get home, so please have patience.

July 19, 2011 11:29 AM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

I wrote: “To paraphrase Dawson, as he put it recently in his blog entry on evil, ‘God has a cozy relationship with evil.’ (‘Some Thoughts on Presuppositionalism and the Problem of Evil’ - October 22, 2010)”

Dawson wrote: "Gee, that’s almost quotable!"

Yes, I should have written that it was a *direct* quote from you. I was writing from memory and, at the time, was too lazy to check. I knew I was close, but I wasn't certain, and I didn't want to attribute words to you that I wasn't sure of. So I used "paraphrase." Looks like my memory ain't so bad after all. Thanks for pointing that out.

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 12:09 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote:

I wrote: "Do you think there is a reality? Are you conscious? Do you exist? Does A = A? If something exists, does some *thing* exist? Do things that exist refuse to conform to your thinking, e.g, wishing doesn't make it so?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then your statement "I reject everything rand says" is clearly false."

r_c321 wrote: "So, are you seriously suggesting that up to Rand no one was able to distinguish the real from the imaginary? If you say yes not only will you be making a false statement. But will also be reducing yourself to utter absurdity.Your choice."

No. This is not what I'm suggesting. In fact, I don't think I was "suggesting" anything, but was quite direct in stating that if you answered "yes" to any of the questions I posed, then you clearly cannot claim to "reject everything rand says." Whether she was the first or the last to "distinguish the real from the imaginary" is irrelevant to this particular issue.

I had written: "This really doesn't answer my question. My question pertained to your assertion that "helping someone is a manifestation of God's love." So it appears you are, again displaying a predictable inconsistency. How do you square "live by the sword, die by the sword" with the idea that "God is Love" or that "helping someone is a manifestation of God's love"?"

r_c321 wrote: "I really think your confused. Is God under any obligation to stop a wicked sinner from carrying out the desires of his heart?"

There have been times in my life I have been confused. This isn't one of them. Since I'm not the one who holds that the non-existent is obliged to do anything, you tell me.

r_c321 wrote: "Do you think ,Ydemoc, that what bin laden got was loving or unloving?"

I think what Osama bin Laden got was justice, albeit delayed.

(continued)

July 19, 2011 1:41 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: "Are you saying that God is unloving because he lets rebel sinners die in their wickedness? Please I would love to know."

Playing along here, if such a being as the God you believe in exists, I can think of nothing more evil and unloving than to create creatures, some of whom are given life just for the sake of sending them to an eternity of flames. This is what the bible teaches, does it not? God knew who was damned from the beginning of creation? Yet he "chose" to give them life anyway? Tell me how God exhibits affection and love to those souls right now who are burning in hell.

r_c321 wrote: "You quoted 45:7 from the KJV is their a particular reason?"

Yes, because you claimed that "God is not the creator of evil." I was giving you a passage (Isaiah 45:7) from the KJV that says otherwise. Perhaps you're not satisfied with the KJV version of the bible? Okay, let's go with another bible, say, the NIV, which reads:

--------------------

I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things.

... or how about the "New American Standard," which reads:


The One forming light and creating darkness, Causing well-being and creating calamity; I am the LORD who does all these.

---------------------

There are other versions of the bible that has God creating "disasters" and "bad times" instead of "evil." Who knows, maybe in a future translation, we might even find the word "bummer" there instead.

It seems these various versions are attempting to soft-peddle the idea that God is, indeed, the creator of evil. But if you prefer having it said of your God that he creates "disasters" or "calamities," I'm not sure how this helps you much. Can you make a case for someone who creates calamities and disasters that *isn't* evil?


I wrote: "According to your worldview, who created everything? Who put into motion the very idea and capability of humans "choosing" anything - from selecting the apple in the garden to making a left turn on Sunset Blvd.?

r_c321 wrote: "God created everyting."

But "everything" doesn't include evil. Got it.

r_c321 wrote: "However, God doesn't force men to do things."

How do you know this? How did you acquire this knowledge? If it comes from the bible, how do you know the bible is true? Do you not believe that God forced you to be born? Or did that just happen? When it is said that "God has a plan for your life," is this not him pulling the strings? Also, what choice did Judas have? What choice did Jesus have? (assuming for a moment reliability of the bible stories - and even they are internally inconsistent)

r_c321 wrote: "How do you choose what you choose?"

By means of reason. I have free will, to think or not to think. How 'bout you?

r_c321 wrote: "If you insist that God forces men to do things I would ask you to find an example."

Uh, Judas?

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 1:42 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: “Who was decived eve or adam?”

It doesn’t matter. How is it possible to deceive someone if that someone has perfect judgment? If either or both were deceived, the problem still exists: we have defective creatures. They cannot be the product of a perfect creator, by definition.

Nide: “Dawson you love to talk.”

Actually, I love to *write*.

Nide: “Let's say person x was a rebellious wicked sinner and was on his way to harm a child.”

I’d ask: who is that rebellious wicked sinner’s *father*? Where is he? Why is he absent from the scene? How did a father allow his child to become so rebellious and wicked? Did this father not love his child?

Nide: “Person y is just as wicked and is looking to rob someone even if it means taking their life. However, he is a little hesistant.”

I’d ask where person y’s father is, too.

If it turns out that person x and person y have the *same father*, then I’d start wondering about the father’s parenting ability: he seems to raise some really bad children. I’d then ask about the father’s own father. But if it turned out that the father didn’t have a father, then an explanation starts to emerge: the father had no model for parenting.

Nide: “God knowing that person x would kill the child removes the restrainsts from person y.

On Christianity’s view, would that be an expression of parental love?

Nide: “That is all God needs to do. Men are not as wicked as they can be.”

I see. So, since this father allows his children to do N evil instead of N+1 evil, that’s okay? He’s a good father all of a sudden?

Nide: “Person y spots x and decides to rob him and ends up killing him.”

All the while, person y and person x share the same father, and their father is observing all their actions and has the wisdom to see the outcome of the events that are in play, and does nothing to intercede and protect his children from one another. What kind of father is that?

Here’s a scenario for you to ponder: Suppose a father has two boys, and he takes them for an outing at the beach. The father is sitting in his chaise longue watching his children’s every move. He watches his children play together and they eventually wade into the surf. The two boys get angry with each other and start to fight. Eventually one gets the upper hand and tries to drown his brother. The father sits there watching the whole thing happen, but remains in his chaise longue doing nothing, all the while saying, “Well, I’m under no obligation to do anything here. After all, I’m not the one who’s drowning the boy! My wicked son is!”

Is the father “bad” or “good” for his inaction?

Please explain your answer.

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 2:35 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Ydemoc wrote: “Whether she was the first or the last to "distinguish the real from the imaginary" is irrelevant to this particular issue.”

Exactly. Since Nide made his sweeping declaration that he “rejects everything [R]and says,” if she said it – regardless of who else may have said it and when – then he rejects it. I see no other way to understand his comment. If Rand said the earth revolves around the sun, then by virtue of his declaration, we must suppose that Nide rejects this view.

It’s just a very foolish and irresponsible thing for Nide to say. He’s clearly driven by emotion on the matter.

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 2:36 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide wrote: "I really think your confused. Is God under any obligation to stop a wicked sinner from carrying out the desires of his heart?"

Nide, do you think a father is under any obligation to stop evildoers from harming his children?

Or, how about protecting his children from their own mistakes? Do you think a father is under any obligation to intercede when he sees danger ahead?

Would you say that if a father observes his child, and his child is about to fall off a cliff, that father should just sit back and say, “Well, I’m not causing my child to fall of the cliff, her own stubbornness will do that,” and just watch his child fall?

What kind of “father” figure do you worship?

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 2:37 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Robert,

Qouting the text "So, how can the divine command theorist confidently assert that God would not approve of torture since He is good? If God did approve of torture (rape, theft, etc.), He would still be good from the point of view of the divine command theory."



How can layman confidently assert that I will still call God Good if he did approve of (rape, theft, etc.)?



Robert you said: "The theodicy you're describing wherein you portray your god as having a morally sufficient reason to allow humans to commit violent crimes against others, like all other theodicies, is intended to nullify the deity's culpability for harm and suffering to humans attending human immorality.

What gives you the idea that I am trying to make strip god of R and C?

In the first place What makes you think that God is R and C?

Person y freely commited the murder and will be held accountable and juddged for what he did.

God simply let go of the "leash"

Does he have this right?

He did nothing contrary to person's Y desires.


What is Good?
What is morality?


Ydemoc,

You said:"No. This is not what I'm suggesting. In fact, I don't think I was "suggesting" anything, but was quite direct in stating that if you answered "yes" to any of the questions I posed, then you clearly cannot claim to "reject everything rand says." Whether she was the first or the last to "distinguish the real from the imaginary" is irrelevant to this particular issue."


GOOD!!


You said: "
There have been times in my life I have been confused. This isn't one of them. Since I'm not the one who holds that the non-existent is obliged to do anything, you tell me.


So, who holds to it because I dont?

You said: "I think what Osama bin Laden got was justice, albeit delayed.

Good!!

If he is presently in a place of torment.

Would that also be justice?

You said: "Playing along here, if such a being as the God you believe in exists, I can think of nothing more evil and unloving than to create creatures, some of whom are given life just for the sake of sending them to an eternity of flames. This is what the bible teaches, does it not? God knew who was damned from the beginning of creation? Yet he "chose" to give them life anyway? Tell me how God exhibits affection and love to those souls right now who are burning in hell."

July 19, 2011 3:46 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

continued

I said this before God does not send anyone to hell. Men send themselves to hell by carrying out the sinful desires of their heart.

Is God unloving for sending bin laden to hell?

If you look at the passage in Romans 9. You will see that it is bad clay he formed the vessels from.

Is God under obligation to save anynone?

God freely offers salvation to all those that will believe in Jesus Christ. There is a lot of hope my friend.

You said: "It seems these various versions are attempting to soft-peddle the idea that God is, indeed, the creator of evil. But if you prefer having it said of your God that he creates "disasters" or "calamities," I'm not sure how this helps you much. Can you make a case for someone who creates calamities and disasters that *isn't* evil?

Would God have been wrong for allowing a hurricane or tornado to kill bin laden?

You said: "How do you know this? How did you acquire this knowledge? If it comes from the bible, how do you know the bible is true? Do you not believe that God forced you to be born? Or did that just happen? When it is said that "God has a plan for your life," is this not him pulling the strings? Also, what choice did Judas have? What choice did Jesus have? (assuming for a moment reliability of the bible stories - and even they are internally inconsistent)

1. Because I havent found a passage that says so.

2. The sinfulness of men.

3. Are you happy that you were born?

4.God has a plan for his people I know that much.

5. Judas had 2 choices sin or not sin. He freely chose to sin.



6. What choice did jesus have?
can you be more specific?

July 19, 2011 3:46 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide: "Is God unloving for sending bin laden to hell?"

Your god could only be unloving for not protecting his children from someone like Bin Laden.

Regards,
Dawson

July 19, 2011 5:49 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: "6. What choice did jesus have? can you be more specific?"

Yes, I can be more specific. According to you, did Jesus have to die on the cross?

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 6:34 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ok, Sir

You said:


"It doesn’t matter. How is it possible to deceive someone if that someone has perfect judgment? If either or both were deceived, the problem still exists: we have defective creatures. They cannot be the product of a perfect creator, by definition."


What definition?




I’d ask: who is that rebellious wicked sinner’s *father*? Where is he? Why is he absent from the scene? How did a father allow his child to become so rebellious and wicked? Did this father not love his child?


doesnt really matter. He is on his way to harm a child to late to ask questions.


On Christianity’s view, would that be an expression of parental love?

Not sure what you are asking here.



"All the while, person y and person x share the same father, and their father is observing all their actions and has the wisdom to see the outcome of the events that are in play, and does nothing to intercede and protect his children from one another. What kind of father is that?"


When did i ever say they had the same father?




"Here’s a scenario for you to ponder: Suppose a father has two boys, and he takes them for an outing at the beach. The father is sitting in his chaise longue watching his children’s every move. He watches his children play together and they eventually wade into the surf. The two boys get angry with each other and start to fight. Eventually one gets the upper hand and tries to drown his brother. The father sits there watching the whole thing happen, but remains in his chaise longue doing nothing, all the while saying, “Well, I’m under no obligation to do anything here. After all, I’m not the one who’s drowning the boy! My wicked son is!”

Is the father “bad” or “good” for his inaction?

Please explain your answer.

What makes you think God loves everybody?

The two sons are both rebellious sons
who hate their father. If they loved him they would obey him.

Why should he intervene?



"Nide, do you think a father is under any obligation to stop evildoers from harming his children?

Or, how about protecting his children from their own mistakes? Do you think a father is under any obligation to intercede when he sees danger ahead?"


1. Who do you think his children are?

2. If he loves his children, Yes


What kind of “father” figure do you worship?

A Good,loving, Holy, Merciful, Father.

Who sent his son into the world
to die for the sins of many and all that will believe on him receive his goodness and eternal life.

"Your god could only be unloving for not protecting his children from someone like Bin Laden.:

Who are his children?

July 19, 2011 6:37 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

@Justin Thank you for your kind words. The credit for that argument rightly belongs to or goes to Volker Dittman & Francois Tremblay. Dittman wrote and Tremblay formated and composed the syllogism for The Immorality of Theodicies

Earlier today on my lunch hour while at work, I had difficulty cobbling that post together. In my confusion I neglected to attribute credit due where it belonged. Here is Tremblay's syllogism agin with a suggested modificaiton.

"This is the end of Mr. Dittman article. I would like to add a formalization of his argument.

1. There is evil/suffering.
2.A god is morally righteous/omnibenevolent.
3. Either:
3a.A god can create a universe without evil/suffering.
3b.There is an explanation for all evil/suffering. (With a theodicy.)
3c.There is no explanation for some evil/suffering.

5.If 3b. is true, then all evil/suffering is justified.
6.If 3b. is true, then all human evil is justified. (from 5)
7. If all our actions can be justified, then there is no more morality. We can rationalize the worst crimes.
8. If 3b. is true, then there is no morality. (from 6 and 7)"

If this is true, then any action, including mass murder and torture, can be justified by the believer. Furthermore, his own moral system is revealed to be a farce. Whether the believer has a theodicy or not, his belief is contradicted.

Last updated: November 10, 2004
**************************

If we were to set aside arguments from existence, primacy of consciousness, incoherency of divine attributes or definitons and so forth, then I think there is a way to supplement 4. by arguing there could be an omnipotent, omniscient, and perfectly evil supreme being as did both Quentin Smith and Michael Martin

My proposed revision of 4 would be thus.

4'.If 3a. or 3c. is true, then there is no good god or there would exist a malevolently evil god. This point represents the usual Problems of Evil.

To be read aloud in the voice of Charleston Heston as Moses returing to the camp of the Israelites from atop Mount Sinai.

[Silly_Mode Joke]
In 4' the POE can be used as a fundamental doctrinal premise to fabricate a Personal Theistic Religion dedicated to veneration of prue evil. [evil_laugh]Bwahhh-ha-ha-ha![/evil_laugh]. Such a religion would of course entail gaining control of the United States Nuclear Arsenal and using it to force the rest of the world to renounce all other religions and to adopt or convert to the new faith of Super Evil One Veneration. I picture the new faith's litergy as involving human sacrifice of Christians, Muslims, and Jews and the sexual use of lovely young girls as Eurcharistic party favors. [evil_laugh]Bwahhh-ha-ha-ha![/evil_laugh].

If its good enough for the Inquisition, its good enough for me.
[/Silly_Mode Joke]

July 19, 2011 7:28 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Hi, r_c321,

Please don't think because I didn't respond to everything you wrote in your previous post to me that I am ignoring it. I'm not. I read every word and I wrote quite a bit in response. I then decided not to post it all, but instead to answer the question you posed to me. And that was...

r_c321: "What choice did jesus have? can you be more specific?"

And I responded: "Yes, I can be more specific. According to you, did Jesus have to die on the cross?"

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 7:31 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

@oops I screwed the pooch and left out Tremblay's premise 4.

It should read

4. If 3a. or 3c. is true, then there is no god. This point represents the usual Problems of Evil.

July 19, 2011 7:32 PM  
Blogger Robert Bumbalough said...

r_c321 "God the father, God the Son, God the Holy spirit.
Are three different Persons."

That is the doctrine of Modalism or a expression of Tri-Theism. Either way r_c321 is a Heretic. It is interesting that he has with the above statement committed a serious Sin, yet the Holy Spirit he claims to derive knowledge from does not convict him of his Sin. It can be inferred from the fact here that r_c321 is expressing Heresy and not being convicted of such Sin that he really does not receive magic ESP from his alleged god.

July 19, 2011 7:49 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

According to me?

Jesus didn't have to anything.
God could have simply left men in their sin.
Men love their sin and freely choose to do it.
God doesn't send anyone to hell he only makes sure they get there.


But since God Is merciful and Good.
He has provided a way out.
His son Jesus christ.
and Whoever will believe on him

In exchange for their sin they get his goodness and eternal life.

1 peter 3:18 "New American Standard Bible (©1995)
For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit;



Therefore, No one can charge God with being unjust.

July 19, 2011 7:54 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Robert,


Modalism, also called Sabellianism, is the unorthodox belief that God is one person who has revealed himself in three forms or modes in contrast to the Trinitarian doctrine where God is one being eternally existing in three persons. According to Modalism, during the incarnation, Jesus was simply God acting in one mode or role, and the Holy Spirit at Pentecost was God acting in a different mode. Thus, God does not exist as the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit at the same time. Rather, He is one person and has merely manifested himself in these three modes at various times. Modalism thus denies the basic distinctiveness and coexistence of the three persons of the Trinity.


Can you please point to me my heresy?

This once again shows the blatant ignorance of atheist.


1 God shared by three persons.

July 19, 2011 8:01 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: "Jesus didn't have to anything [sic). God could have simply left men in their sin."

And when did God decide not to leave men in their sin? In the beginning? A week after the beginning? Around Noah's time? After that? Several hundred years later? The day Jesus was "implanted" in Mary? (By the way, what choice did she have?)

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 8:09 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

In ephesians one Paul said god chose his people before the foundation of the world.


In mary's case I don't think it's a matter of choice.
In other words she didn't object when the angel told her
the news. She was willing to have the babe.

I'm sure she could have said no.
But she didn't.

July 19, 2011 9:35 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Hello, r_c321,

r_c321 wrote: "In ephesians one Paul said god chose his people before the foundation of the world."

So it was all set in stone, so to speak, from the get go. By inference, it seems we can conclude that the damned were also determined from the get go. How does this square with you saying Judas and other sinners have a choice in the matter of sin and salvation? Or that sinners choose to reject God? Do you not see your inconsistency in maintaining this if everything predetermined from the get go?

r_c321 wrote: "In mary's case I don't think it's a matter of choice.
In other words she didn't object when the angel told her
the news. She was willing to have the babe."

How could she have said "no"? It was all set from the foundations of the world, wasn't it?

What do you think might have happened had she said "no"? If Judas hadn't betrayed Jesus? Would that also have been a part of God's plan?

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 10:13 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321,

I realize some you've already addressed a few of the comments below. But perhaps reading through it again will give you a new perspective. I'm replying to the comments you made, a few posts back:

I wrote:"No. This is not what I'm suggesting. In fact, I don't think I was "suggesting" anything, but was quite direct in stating that if you answered "yes" to any of the questions I posed, then you clearly cannot claim to "reject everything rand says." Whether she was the first or the last to "distinguish the real from the imaginary" is irrelevant to this particular issue."




r_c321 wrote: “GOOD!!”

Good? Okay, r_c321, if you say so. By your response, you seem to agree with my assessment above. Yet you still haven’t answered the questions I posed. That’s okay -- some evasiveness from you is expected. I’ll move on.

I wrote: "There have been times in my life I have been confused. This isn't one of them. And since I'm not the one who holds that the non-existent is obliged to do anything, you tell me.”




r_c 321 wrote: “So, who holds to it because I dont?”

There are none so blind, as those who will not see. You hold to a primacy of consciousness metaphysics. A mystical view of reality. Your denial is actually a symptom of this worldview. Get a check-up. Start with your premises.



I wrote: "I think what Osama bin Laden got was justice, albeit delayed.”



r_c321 wrote: “Good!! If he is presently in a place of torment. Would that also be justice?”

There are so many stolen concepts in what you just asked:“presently,” “place,” “torment,” “justice” I will tell you up front that you can’t get to where you want to go by using these concepts, because you are denying what makes these concepts possible, not only in your overall belief, but also in your hypothetical question.

But let’s entertain your question anyway, like someone might entertain a question about the possibility of flying to the moon by flapping one’s arms:

Osama was dealt with in a just manner. He got what he deserved. On the other hand, with your beliefs, it’s hard to ascertain what justice for Osama would be because (A) your God gave life to Osama knowing what he would do (B) your God had a plan for Osama and for all those affected by 9/11, even from the foundation of the world (C) this all-powerful being did not intercede and stop Osama.

(continued)

July 19, 2011 10:22 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

Also, I’m no bleeding-heart liberal. And I’m certainly not a theist. But if I was a theist, I think the idea of eternal punishment in a lake of fire for a finite crime would seem a bit much. I’d go for 1 million years in hell, with less time for good behavior.

But let’s turn this on it’s head, shall we? Supposing just before he was “double-tapped,” Osama turned his life over to Christ. In heaven, will you welcome him with open arms? Meanwhile, down in hell are some of the people who died that day in the Twin Towers -- the very people he is responsible for killing. Would that be justice?



I wrote: "Playing along here, if such a being as the God you believe in exists, I can think of nothing more evil and unloving than to create creatures, some of whom are given life just for the sake of sending them to an eternity of flames. This is what the bible teaches, does it not? God knew who was damned from the beginning of creation? Yet he "chose" to give them life anyway? Tell me how God exhibits affection and love to those souls right now who are burning in hell."



r_c321 wrote: “I said this before God does not send anyone to hell. Men send themselves to hell by carrying out the sinful desires of their heart. Is God unloving for sending bin laden to hell?”

Even here you contradict yourself. You say God doesn’t send anyone to hell, then turn around and ask if God is unloving for sending Osama to hell. Does he send people there or doesn’t he?



r_c321 wrote: “If you look at the passage in Romans 9. You will see that it is bad clay he formed the vessels from.”

I think you might want to look at Romans 9 again, r_c321:

Romans 9:21 - “Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for noble purposes and some for common use?”

It says the “same lump of clay,” not “bad” clay. In any case, it supports my point. But if you disagree with the bible or what other Christians who hold different doctrines affirm, that’s not my problem.

r_c321 wrote: “Is God under obligation to save anynone? God freely offers salvation to all those that will believe in Jesus Christ. There is a lot of hope my friend.”

“Freely offers”? Or you’ll go to hell if you don’t take this free gift I’m offering you. Also, you have to perform works -- well, you don’t have to -- you’ll want to! -- because hell will be waiting for you if you don’t, that’s why you’ll want to! You’ll also want to because your mind is being molded and your faith reinforced through fellowship. Faith without works is dead, is it not?

And if this heavenly reward is such a certain thing, then what does “hope” have to do with it? Hoping for something doesn’t guarantee attaining what one hopes for.



I wrote: "It seems these various versions [of the bible] are attempting to soft-peddle the idea that God is, indeed, the creator of evil. But if you prefer having it said of your God that he creates "disasters" or "calamities," I'm not sure how this helps you much. Can you make a case for someone who creates calamities and disasters that *isn't* evil? 


(continued)

July 19, 2011 10:28 PM  
Blogger Ydemoc said...

r_c321 wrote: “Would God have been wrong for allowing a hurricane or tornado to kill bin laden?”

It wouldn’t make much sense to me if the God as Christians describe, did such a thing. But, hey, that’s not surprising, since nonsense seems to be par for the course for Christians and their God.

Consider: That hurricane or tornado would not only kill Osama, but probably also a lot of innocent people, too. Perhaps even a lot of people that, had they lived, may have converted to Christianity or persuaded others to do the same. 



I wrote: "How do you know this? How did you acquire this knowledge? If it comes from the bible, how do you know the bible is true? Do you not believe that God forced you to be born? Or did that just happen? When it is said that "God has a plan for your life," is this not him pulling the strings? Also, what choice did Judas have? What choice did Jesus have? (assuming for a moment reliability of the bible stories - and even they are internally inconsistent)

r_c321 wrote: "1. Because I havent found a passage that says so."

If the bible had a passage that said “all written in this book is false,” would you believe it?



r_c321 wrote: "2. The sinfulness of men."

And you know men are sinful because... Oh, that’s right, it’s written in the very book in question, inspired by the very God in question.



r_c321 wrote: "3. Are you happy that you were born?"

As it turns out, yes I am. Take note:
“Happiness is that state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of one’s values. If a man values productive work, his happiness is the measure of his success in the service of his life. But if a man values destruction, like a sadist—or self-torture, like a masochist—or life beyond the grave, like a mystic—or mindless “kicks,” like the driver of a hotrod car—his alleged happiness is the measure of his success in the service of his own destruction. It must be added that the emotional state of all those irrationalists cannot be properly designated as happiness or even as pleasure: it is merely a moment’s relief from their chronic state of terror.
Neither life nor happiness can be achieved by the pursuit of irrational whims. Just as man is free to attempt to survive by any random means, as a parasite, a moocher or a looter, but not free to succeed at it beyond the range of the moment—so he is free to seek his happiness in any irrational fraud, any whim, any delusion, any mindless escape from reality, but not free to succeed at it beyond the range of the moment nor to escape the consequences.” (“The Objectivist Ethics,” The Virtue of Selfishness, 28)

r_c321 wrote: "4.God has a plan for his people I know that much."

And you know this how, exactly? Doesn’t a plan include seeing to it that certain things pan out the way one wants them to pan out? 



r_c321 wrote: "5. Judas had 2 choices sin or not sin. He freely chose to sin."

And if he hadn’t sinned, if he hadn’t betrayed Jesus, and Jesus went on to live a long life, what then? Wasn’t Judas’ sinning a part of God’s plan?



r_c321 wrote: "6. What choice did jesus have?
can you be more specific?"

I was more specific in a previous post.

Ydemoc

July 19, 2011 10:35 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

r_c321 "Men love their sin and freely choose to do it."

If your god is omniscient, I could not have chosen to "sin", nor could I have chosen anything, ever.

The very idea of freedom of choice is predicated on there being at least two logically available choices in any situation. In a universe containing an omniscient god, there can only ever be one logically available choice - the one that was predetermined by his perfect foreknowledge.

From my perspective, it may appear that I've exercised a free preponderance of options when I have bagels for breakfast instead of cereal. But if your god knew with perfect foreknowledge from time immemorial that I would choose bagels, the cereal option was only ever an illusion. So it goes for all choices I've ever made and could ever possibly make, all of them inexorably bound to your god's perfect foreknowledge, over which I have no control.

It's one of the many reasons I'm grateful he doesn't exist anywhere outside the gray matter between your ears.

July 20, 2011 12:17 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Ydemoc,

Been a little busy.
I will be responding soon.


Dylan,

Let me give you hand.

You can kick and Scream all you want.
The fact is we are both here.
There is nothing we can do about it.

All men know they are guilty before God.
So, I understand why you rather make believe he doesn't exist.

What's so hard about repenting and believing?

God commands this.(acts 17)





2 corinthians 10:5 "5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;"

July 20, 2011 2:44 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I wrote: "It doesn’t matter. How is it possible to deceive someone if that someone has perfect judgment? If either or both were deceived, the problem still exists: we have defective creatures. They cannot be the product of a perfect creator, by definition."

Nide asked: “What definition?”

Definition of the concept ‘perfect’. It makes no sense to call a creator that creates anything less than perfection a “perfect creator.” If you think it does, then please explain. But you would only need to do this is you in fact think your creator creates imperfections and yet still needs to retain the label “perfect creator.”

Do you think your god creates only perfection? If so, how is creating a creature with imperfect judgment an instance of creating perfection?

Nide: “He is on his way to harm a child to late to ask questions.”

I suppose you prefer this route because you’re unable to answer the questions. If someone is on his way to harm a child, where is the child’s father? Does the child’s father know that his child’s safety is being threatened? And omniscient father would. What about his responsibility as the child’s parent? If the father knows that his child is being threatened, what does the child’s father do? Does it act to protect its child, or does it stand idly by while the threat proceeds without opposition?

I asked: “On Christianity’s view, would that be an expression of parental love?”

Nide responded: “Not sure what you are asking here.”

Let me clarify then. In the case of Adam. When Adam “fell” in the garden, was it an expression of parental love when biblegod punished them in the manner that the myth says it did?

I am a father. I have a young daughter. When my daughter disobeyed me the first time, do you think I should have cursed her forever, and kicked her out of the wonderful home I had built for her, and sent her away to live in pain? Would that have been a loving thing for me as her father to do?

Nide: “When did i ever say they had the same father?”

I nowhere said that you did say they have the same father. You wouldn’t need to. It would be redundant. According to Christianity, biblegod created everyone. In this sense, the Christian god is everyone’s father, for ultimately it “begat” us all, according to Christianity. (If you now want to say that we weren’t all created in the image of your god, please correct me here.) The Christian god is supposed to be everyone’s “heavenly father,” even of those who have strayed and transgressed (which according to Christianity is everyone, including his “chosen”).

[Continued…]

July 20, 2011 2:51 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

I wrote: "Here’s a scenario for you to ponder...Is the father ‘bad’ or ‘good’ for his inaction? Please explain your answer.”

Nide: “What makes you think God loves everybody?”

Let’s focus on my question for a moment. I know that you can revise your god-belief any time it suits you. But this is an opportunity for you to display your renewed Christian character: Is the father in the above scenario “bad” or “good” for his inaction?

Do you not have a moral compass? Can you not tell the good from the bad?

Nide wrote: “The two sons are both rebellious sons who hate their father. If they loved him they would obey him. Why should he intervene?”

Certainly not because it loves them, eh? Or I’m guessing now we’re being told that it really doesn’t love them. And yet we’re told “God is love” (I John 4:8). It’s all doubletalk.

It should be pointed out that genuine love is something one must *earn* - it cannot be "commanded."

I asked: "Nide, do you think a father is under any obligation to stop evildoers from harming his children? Or, how about protecting his children from their own mistakes? Do you think a father is under any obligation to intercede when he sees danger ahead?"

Notice that Nide wants to ask his own question in response to mine:

Nide: “1. Who do you think his children are?”

Your god’s children are whoever you want to be its children. That’s why the bible is so useful for the mystic: it’s vague on so many matters, and this allows the believer to personalize his belief (so that he can furnish it in a way that keeps him committed to it) while simultaneously allowing him to evade responsibility in the area of mature thought. Notice how often in the space of a week or so that you exhibit reluctance to take a defined position on any legitimate philosophical issue.

Since I can remember, Christians seeking to proselytize me have used the “God loves you” pitch as a key component in their efforts to con me into the fold. When they’re trying to bait you, they will affirm a position like this. But later, when their position is being examined for consistency, they backpedal, as if to say, “Well no one’s saying that God loves everyone!” Even though one of the most cited verses from the NT, John 3:16, says plainly “God so loved the world…” In Christianity, “the world” connotes the vast population of human sinners.

But in the end, the Christian believer is free to define whom his god loves, because in the end it’s all imaginary anyway, and the believer is able to rewrite whatever is in his imagination as he sees fit, such as when he needs to evade philosophical analysis. You can imagine that all human beings are its children one moment, and then imagine that only some human beings are its children. It all reduces to what the believer imagines. The mirage of commitment is replaced with a non-committal attitude and dialogic squirming, as Nide has so exquisitely demonstrated for us.

Nide: “2. If he loves his children, Yes”

But the believer is in control of this, since it’s all imaginary anyway.

I asked: “What kind of ‘father’ figure do you worship?”

Nide: “A Good,loving, Holy, Merciful, Father.”

Right: a good and loving god which does not intervene when tragedy strikes its children. Look what he allowed to happen to his first human children, Adam and Eve, in the garden myth.

Nide: “Who sent his son into the world to die”

Indeed, who wants to be your god’s child? Look at what it did to its son Jesus! Only someone who given up on creating a happy life for himself would want to join your cult.

Nide: “Who are his children?”

Ultimately, only whoever you imagine them to be.

Regards,
Dawson

July 20, 2011 2:58 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Dylan wrote: “From my perspective, it may appear that I've exercised a free preponderance of options when I have bagels for breakfast instead of cereal. But if your god knew with perfect foreknowledge from time immemorial that I would choose bagels, the cereal option was only ever an illusion. So it goes for all choices I've ever made and could ever possibly make, all of them inexorably bound to your god's perfect foreknowledge, over which I have no control.”

Well put. Indeed, if one holds to Christianity’s determinism, then the whole idea of human volition is out the window: the Christian cannot consistently affirm Christianity and then turn around and say that men do what they choose to do.

Christianity’s determinism is expressly endorsed by major presuppositionalist writers. Observe:

“God controls whatsoever comes to pass.” (Cornelius Van Til, The Defense of the Faith, p. 160)

“God’s thoughts make the world what it is and determine what happens – which is why all facts are revelatory of God…” (Greg Bahnsen, Van Til’s Apologetic: Readings & Analysis, p. 243)

“God controls all events and outcomes (even those that come about by human choice and activity) and is far more capable and powerful than modern machines.” (Greg Bahnsen, Van Til's Apologetic, p. 489n.43)

Bahnsen explicitly tells us that “even those [outcomes] that come about by human choice and activity” are really outcomes under the control of his god. So Bahnsen is essentially committing the fallacy of the stolen concept by affirming man’s capacity for making choices to begin with, since the metaphysical framework of the worldview he affirms is completely at odds with the very concept of human choice.

In a contest between man’s will and the Christian god’s will, whose will does the Christian think will prevail? If Dylan really would prefer cereal for breakfast, but since the “beginning of time” the Christian god has predestined him to eat bagels, whose preference is going to play out? Given how Christians describe their god, Dylan would be no match for it. He would have no choice in the matter.

I’m glad these aren’t my problems!

Regards,
Dawson

July 20, 2011 3:02 PM  
Blogger Bahnsen Burner said...

Nide asked: “What's so hard about repenting and believing?”

You ask as if Dylan had any say in the matter. But earlier in our discussion you repeatedly affirmed that it’s up to “the Holy Spirit” to bring this about. On your view, Nide, an invisible magic being has to force Dylan into convicted belief.

Or, do you think Dylan could just want to believe? Is that what you did? Is it the case that you believe because you want it to be true? That’s how it is in the case of preferring the imaginary over the real. And you’ve already demonstrated over and over that you are unable to explain how we can reliably distinguish between what you call “God” and what you may merely be imagining. You can’t even refute the argument I presented in my blog above!

Regards,
Dawson

July 20, 2011 3:06 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

r_c321: "Let me give you hand. You can kick and Scream all you want.
The fact is we are both here.
There is nothing we can do about it."

This has nothing to do with what I said. I take this as a concession that you have no argument in answer to the freedom of choice vs. omniscience dichotomy.

"All men know they are guilty before God."

I don't believe your god exists, so this statement is factually incorrect.

"I understand why you rather make believe he doesn't exist."

You're confused. The barrier of reality and imagination is your problem, not mine.

"What's so hard about repenting and believing?"

Did you start asking loaded questions before or after you beat your wife last week?

"God commands this.(acts 17)"

Again, you're confused. What you meant to say was the anonymous author of Acts claims that "god" commands this. I don't accept your book of fairy tales as an authority on any subject (other than a catalog of the beliefs of the people who wrote it), so this is of no import to me.

July 20, 2011 3:43 PM  
Blogger Nide Corniell said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

July 20, 2011 3:53 PM  
Blogger r_c321 said...

Dylan said: "Did you start asking loaded questions before or after you beat your wife last week?"

Im not married so this question is irrelevant.

Not even sure why you would even ask this type question.

July 20, 2011 3:58 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

Nothing quite like that WHOOOSHING sound of a point sailing over someone's head.

"Im not married so this question is irrelevant."

Oh, you're NOT? Gee, I'm sorry. I'm sorry for asking you a LOADED QUESTION. I won't do it again.

"Not even sure why you would even ask this type question."

I'm wondering the same thing of you. Why would you ask me a loaded question like "why is it so hard to repent?". I suspect it's because you can't construct a logical argument, so you resort to infantile baiting tactics, but I'd love to be proven wrong.

Not that I blame you for avoiding the actual challenge. Much brighter theistic minds than yours have poured over the dichotomy between omniscience and freedom of choice, and they all failed miserably at resolving it.

July 20, 2011 4:16 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

"Men have no desire to believe."

Dang. All this time I've thought the fairy tales of magic-addled supernaturalists were unbelievable because of their lack of reasoned evidence and/or logical grounding, but here it turns out I'm genetically predisposed to the condition of not believing stupid stuff. How profound.

"They freely choose to do this."

If you're god is omniscient, no, they don't. They are merely acting out parts in accordance with his perfect foreknowledge, and can never do otherwise.

July 20, 2011 4:36 PM  

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