Pastor Turned Atheist

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Postby langleyparkjoe » Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:04 am

Well I'm assuming up top has free wi-fi so if I go first, I'll log on and let ya'll know what's really going on. :lol:
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Postby welch » Thu Aug 01, 2013 11:21 pm

Maybe some questions cannot be answered. Kant said, roughly, the human mind is so constructed as to ask questions that the human mind cannot answer.

I find that reading most of Kant is like staring through a brick wall. This, however, clicks. seems right.

By means of scientific method, we can never know why there is "something" rather than "nothing". If there was a big-bang, nobody observed and recorded it for us.
Last edited by welch on Sun Aug 04, 2013 4:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Cappster » Fri Aug 02, 2013 11:56 am

welch wrote:Maybe some questions cannot be answered. Kant said, roughly, the human mind is so constructed as to as questions that the human mind cannot answer.

I find that reading most of Kant is like staring through a brick wall. This, however, clicks. seems right.

By means of scientific method, we can never know why there is "something" rather than "nothing". If there was a big-bang, nobody observed and recorded it for us.


It is possible that the origin of life may never conclusively be discovered; however, we can possibly put enough of the pieces together to form an acceptable theory based on evidence (which we pretty much do now with the big bang theory). There is also the possibility of the 4th dimension as explained by the one and only Carl Sagan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnURElCzGc0
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Postby Deadskins » Thu Aug 08, 2013 6:24 am

Cappster wrote:There is also the possibility of the 4th dimension as explained by the one and only Carl Sagan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnURElCzGc0

Science has moved way beyond Sagan. There are now believed to be 11 dimensions.
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Postby DarthMonk » Fri Aug 09, 2013 5:39 pm

Countertrey wrote:Jerry Dewitt, it appears to me, is a very confused man who spews much nonsense.


Who is more confused, DeWitt or this guy - The Very Rev. Gary R. Hall, Dean of the Washington National Cathedral?

Excerpt:

I don’t want to be loosey-goosey about it,” he says, “but I describe myself as a non-theistic Christian.”

Link:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle ... ory_1.html
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Postby Countertrey » Fri Aug 09, 2013 6:40 pm

DarthMonk wrote:
Countertrey wrote:Jerry Dewitt, it appears to me, is a very confused man who spews much nonsense.


Who is more confused, DeWitt or this guy - The Very Rev. Gary R. Hall, Dean of the Washington National Cathedral?

Excerpt:

I don’t want to be loosey-goosey about it,” he says, “but I describe myself as a non-theistic Christian.”

Link:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle ... ory_1.html
Wow... what a bunch of nonsense...
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Postby HEROHAMO » Sat Aug 10, 2013 6:48 pm

Cappster wrote:
welch wrote:Maybe some questions cannot be answered. Kant said, roughly, the human mind is so constructed as to as questions that the human mind cannot answer.

I find that reading most of Kant is like staring through a brick wall. This, however, clicks. seems right.

By means of scientific method, we can never know why there is "something" rather than "nothing". If there was a big-bang, nobody observed and recorded it for us.


It is possible that the origin of life may never conclusively be discovered; however, we can possibly put enough of the pieces together to form an acceptable theory based on evidence (which we pretty much do now with the big bang theory). There is also the possibility of the 4th dimension as explained by the one and only Carl Sagan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnURElCzGc0


I kind of wanted to stay away from this discussion.
But here I am.

I am going back to what I said before. The Big bang theory needs certain particles present for it to happen. Then the question for me comes to mind what created the ingredients necessary for the Big Bang theory to happen?

So it is not an acceptable theory for me as far as the creation of life is concerned. There may have been a big bang to create certain things. But it certainly is not the beginning of life in my mind.

Carbon testing is used to test how old things are. So Carbon must be one of the oldest things. But once again the question will come back to how did carbon get here? How did the Stars, the Universe, what was before the universe. Science is wonderful. Science has helped discover cures to diseases more efficient ways of living to benefit man kind. But it cannot answer the question of who created it all?

I am already convinced God did it. It says so in the Bible. He created the heavens and the earth.

Its been proven to me by him many a times in my life that he exists. So therefore I take him at his word when he says he created the Earth and life.

I am not a guy who gos to church. In fact I would much rather live a life where I could go to clubs and sleep with multiple women when I please. Eat steaks, Lobster, vacation when I want whatever. I smoke cigars drink liquor every other weekend. I am by no means a holy dude.

But there have been times in my life when I got down on my knees and asked for something. I prayed and prayed and prayed. Even though It was a nearly impossible task at the time for me. Then I worked at it and eventually I got what I wanted. Usually God gives u what you need or an oppurtunity. But in my case I actually got exactly what I wanted. All though I worked very hard at it. Just too many times for me to even try to deny that there is a God. Because believe me I would rather live life in the fast lane with no one judging me.
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Postby Cappster » Tue Aug 13, 2013 7:38 am

HEROHAMO wrote:
Cappster wrote:
welch wrote:Maybe some questions cannot be answered. Kant said, roughly, the human mind is so constructed as to as questions that the human mind cannot answer.

I find that reading most of Kant is like staring through a brick wall. This, however, clicks. seems right.

By means of scientific method, we can never know why there is "something" rather than "nothing". If there was a big-bang, nobody observed and recorded it for us.


It is possible that the origin of life may never conclusively be discovered; however, we can possibly put enough of the pieces together to form an acceptable theory based on evidence (which we pretty much do now with the big bang theory). There is also the possibility of the 4th dimension as explained by the one and only Carl Sagan:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnURElCzGc0


I kind of wanted to stay away from this discussion.
But here I am.

I am going back to what I said before. The Big bang theory needs certain particles present for it to happen. Then the question for me comes to mind what created the ingredients necessary for the Big Bang theory to happen?

So it is not an acceptable theory for me as far as the creation of life is concerned. There may have been a big bang to create certain things. But it certainly is not the beginning of life in my mind.

Carbon testing is used to test how old things are. So Carbon must be one of the oldest things. But once again the question will come back to how did carbon get here? How did the Stars, the Universe, what was before the universe. Science is wonderful. Science has helped discover cures to diseases more efficient ways of living to benefit man kind. But it cannot answer the question of who created it all?

I am already convinced God did it. It says so in the Bible. He created the heavens and the earth.

Its been proven to me by him many a times in my life that he exists. So therefore I take him at his word when he says he created the Earth and life.

I am not a guy who gos to church. In fact I would much rather live a life where I could go to clubs and sleep with multiple women when I please. Eat steaks, Lobster, vacation when I want whatever. I smoke cigars drink liquor every other weekend. I am by no means a holy dude.

But there have been times in my life when I got down on my knees and asked for something. I prayed and prayed and prayed. Even though It was a nearly impossible task at the time for me. Then I worked at it and eventually I got what I wanted. Usually God gives u what you need or an oppurtunity. But in my case I actually got exactly what I wanted. All though I worked very hard at it. Just too many times for me to even try to deny that there is a God. Because believe me I would rather live life in the fast lane with no one judging me.


Your mind is already made up no matter what evidence that "god did it." If you are satisfied with that conclusion then more power to you. I am not convinced that the bible is the word of god given all of the inconsistencies in a book that is considered to be divine. On another note, if your mind tells you that you want to go have sex with multiple women then you have already committed "sin." Just go out and do it anyway if that is what you want to do. The only guarantee at life we have is this life so go out and enjoy it while it lasts.
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Postby welch » Fri Aug 16, 2013 6:39 pm

It still comes back to some question like "well, then what caused that?" And the chain of causes goes back and back. Incidentally, St Thomas Aquinas evaluated several proofs for the existence of God in the Summa Theologiae. There is probably a summary available for the googling.

Maybe we exist because there was no time when time started. We expect to find causes, and that is almost built into our minds. People seem to want an explanation for things; before a few hundred years ago the explanations could be goofy, but they were explanations. Now we have an idea of how to look for evidence, how to experiment, how to evaluate results. We still change as we learn more.

If the universe is in some sort of perpetual cycle of big bang -> expansion -> collapse into a tiny dot -> big bang -> expansion... etc. If that's what is happening, we have no place from which to observe it, no evidence one way or another. Just a buil-in human need to finid a cause, and no answer, and a puzzle.

Another way to look at this is that belief is like building a bridge from two sides. We can build a foundation, push out pillars and such, but we need God to reach out to us, to place the arch-stone that keeps the bridge from collapsing. That's called "grace", and I am paraphrasing what I remember (at 35 years distance) from St Augustine.

Personally, I have a low opinion of various forms of predestination: both as an element of religion or of science. The "scientific predestination" would be a belief that everything we think and do is governed by laws of nature: molecules, biological systems, all that. I think we have free will, and I will believe in a deity, which, for convenience, I'll call God.

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Re: Pastor Turned Atheist

Postby crazyhorse1 » Fri Nov 01, 2013 3:12 pm

Countertrey is incorrect in regard to his notion that an atheist deducts that there is no God. An atheist is one who simply has no belief in God (by definition). It is an absence of belief. An atheist need not contend even that the truth of the matter is knowable or unknowable. He simply has no belief in God or Gods. See Dawkins or many of the authors in Hitchens' book. One can be an agnostic and an atheist at the same time. An agnostic is an atheist with other considerations tacked on. i personally believe that the truth is probably scientifically knowable but that we don't know it yet, and also believe a supernatural ruler of the universe to be no more probable than the Skins winning their next one million games. I am both an agnostic and an atheist, but am more comfortable with the word "atheist." Like everybody else, I don't know diddly about God (in spite of my training/studying, which has been considerable).

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Re:

Postby crazyhorse1 » Fri Nov 01, 2013 3:51 pm

DarthMonk wrote:
Countertrey wrote:
DarthMonk wrote:
I smell an argument.
Yes, you do. You are agnostic... NOT atheist. As long as you have doubt... in either direction... you cannot be atheist.


I'll assume you are talking about me here when you say "you." Really doesn't matter but it will make things easier.

I am an agnostic. I am not an atheist. I am a totally on-the-fence agnostic. Some might say that simply makes me a pussy who lacks the courage of any conviction on the issue. That's fine with me if people want to look at it that way.

Can I be an agnostic (acknowledge unknowability on the issue) yet say "I think it is more likely there is a God than not?"

I have used the phrase "intellectual honesty" on this issue concerning thesits who say they know God exists. I also use it for atheists who say they know God does not exist.

I say DeWitt is simply displaying intellectual honesty. He is acknowledging unknowability (agnosticism is his conclusion) but says he currently believes it is more likely that no God exists than it is that a God does exist (atheism is his opinion).

It's quite simple.

Do you currently acknowledge unknowability for yourself? If not then I do not believe you wholeheartedly. Of course, I could be wrong.

If you do currently acknowledge unknowability for yourself I then ask, which way do you lean?

If you understand all this (and I'm pretty sure you do) then we are simply down to something like syntax and which dictionary we are using. If you are saying an agnostic can't lean either way then we simply have and unresolveable disagreement on the use of the words involved. #shrug


I have already said so, but will say it again, hopefully plainer. An atheist is one simply without belief in God or Gods. That is the end of it. It doesn't matter whether you deny the existence of God (militant atheist), question it, deny it, call it something else, or accept the whole issue as something that may later or may not be known, or are searching for what you believe. It simply doesn't matter. You are an atheist, like most people.
"Agnostic" is a category of "Atheist." As in: What kind of Atheist are you. Answer: Agnostic. I believe God's existence may or may be revealed or revealed. Maybe he exists or doesn't. I am questioning, I am searching. I will believe in a God if one can be proven (as in Richard Dawkins).

Your qualifications don't matter. You are without belief in God or Gods. You are an Atheist.

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Re: Pastor Turned Atheist

Postby Deadskins » Fri Nov 01, 2013 7:36 pm

crazyhorse1 wrote:I am both an agnostic and an atheist, but am more comfortable with the word "atheist." Like everybody else, I don't know diddly about God (in spite of my training/studying, which has been considerable).

Sounds like a contradiction to me.
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Re: Pastor Turned Atheist

Postby crazyhorse1 » Sat Nov 02, 2013 5:51 pm

An Agnostic is "without knowledge" by definition coined by Huxley. In other words, he considers himself (or man) without the necessary knowledge to determine if there's a God or not.

An Atheist is "without belief" by definition. You can see that neither currently have a "belief" in God. An Agnostic is just a type of Atheist. Theoretically, an Atheist is easier to convert than an Agnostic (type of Atheist) . He might be open to a valid proof, whereas most Agnostics dispute that there could be valid elements of proof. For this reason, scientists who stand by the scientific method are usually Atheists. All Agnostics are Atheist, but not all Atheists are Agnostics.

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Re: Pastor Turned Atheist

Postby DarthMonk » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:33 pm

Deadskins wrote:
crazyhorse1 wrote:I am both an agnostic and an atheist, but am more comfortable with the word "atheist." Like everybody else, I don't know diddly about God (in spite of my training/studying, which has been considerable).

Sounds like a contradiction to me.


It's not, of course. You either just don't get it or refuse to. To be an atheist is not to espouse (necessarily) a denial of the existence of god. Atheism is simply non-theism. A very strong form of it does deny the possibility of god existing.

I am a non-theist. I do not hold the belief that god exists. This is different than holding the belief that god does not exist. That, in turn, is different from flatly averring that god does not exist. Additionally, since I say I do not know (that is what I call intellectual honesty), I am also an agnostic.

It's really pretty simple once you actually read the words.
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Re: Pastor Turned Atheist

Postby Deadskins » Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:46 am

DarthMonk wrote:
Deadskins wrote:
crazyhorse1 wrote:I am both an agnostic and an atheist, but am more comfortable with the word "atheist." Like everybody else, I don't know diddly about God (in spite of my training/studying, which has been considerable).

Sounds like a contradiction to me.


It's not, of course. You either just don't get it or refuse to. To be an atheist is not to espouse (necessarily) a denial of the existence of god. Atheism is simply non-theism. A very strong form of it does deny the possibility of god existing.

I am a non-theist. I do not hold the belief that god exists. This is different than holding the belief that god does not exist. That, in turn, is different from flatly averring that god does not exist. Additionally, since I say I do not know (that is what I call intellectual honesty), I am also an agnostic.

It's really pretty simple once you actually read the words.

Not really. He says he doesn't "know diddly about God." That statement requires the existance of God. There's your contradiction.
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