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Naturalism Isn’t Natural… It’s Bias

August 8, 2008

Some have said, “you can’t just say God did everything. There’s no explanation in that.” OK. let’s just say “nature” does everything. Now we’ve come to some “superior” explanation! Sarcasm aside, saying God is the cause of all phenomenon does not preclude a scientific understanding of that phenomenon! Let’s have a scientific understanding of everything. But in the end, are we going to attribute the cause to “nature” or God? Which is our God, “nature” or God?

On top of that, so many so called “scientists” marry science to Naturalism. More specifically, they limit their scientific hypothesis’ to only natural explanations! Why they do this, I don’t know! Maybe it’s because they hate God. Just my hypothesis.

The funny thing is that no one even knows what the “natural” ultimately is!!! Not even Naturalists! Not even they can tell you what the fundamental substance is that everything is made up of. “Well everything is just atoms and electromagnetism at its bare core.” OK… that is until we begin to discover what that is made up of, and then what that is made up of, and so forth, an so forth, and on and on and on… What is “the natural”? Yet scientists, Evolutionists, and “Naturalists” throw this word around as though it were actually a solidified thing.

I can use the same line of reasoning as the Naturalist and say “God is a Naturalist”. Meaning, it’s perfectly natural for God to create, uphold, and allow all that is. This in no way, shape, or form negates scientific explanations. It only posits God as our ultimate reality, rather then whatever is believed to be “natural”.

(My argument of course is that the supernatural is more natural than the “natural”. That’s because I believe only an eternal, personal, all-good, triune being can account for logic and morality.)

But what do you think? When you question “naturalism” this way, doesn’t it go to show you that we have so many assumptions about what is considered “natural”? I believe it does.

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33 comments

  1. this is one of the most ridiculous things i’ve read.
    we don’t jsut say “nature does everything”. we don’t make clams about unknowable things like origin or what was before the big bang. there is no shame in that. what is a shame is trying to get science to reconcile to your belief in the supernatural. by definition supernatural is something that science could not explain. if science could explain it it would no longer be supernatural. see how silly your logic is now? you really want you ineffable god to fit into a theoretical model? not kowing if we have found all of the base particles isnot a bad thing. get it through your arrogant head. not knowing is not a bad thing. we continue to learn and the lack of dogma in science allows to update our models when new information is found. imagine if science were as dogmatic as your religion. we would be stuck in the dark ages. face the fact that in regard to the question of whether or not there is a prime mover, you have no evidence that there is, we have no evidence that there is not. what we do have is evidence that explains everything we see, naturally. you need to educate yourself and start hanging out with christians that realize a god of the gaps is no god at all and that faith is no substitute for observation when it comes to the real world. i find your faith to be very weak indeed if you are so desperate to find scientific explanations for your god.


  2. Cirri, you said “by definition supernatural is something that science could not explain.”

    Yes, and science can only be accounted for by the supernatural. Even if you fill in the blank to the statement “we should do science because…” any answer is a metaphysical answer.

    “if science could explain it it would no longer be supernatural.”

    This is your presupposition. My presupposition is that the supernatural is more natural than the natural because it has eternally existed, and the natural hasn’t, yet requires an eternal dimension to account for itself. Otherwise, we’re left saying idiotic things like “matter creates itself” or “matter comes out of nothing”.

    “not kowing if we have found all of the base particles isnot a bad thing. get it through your arrogant head. not knowing is not a bad thing.”

    I don’t go on your site and call you names. I think you need some Naturalistic counseling. And just because we don’t know how God currently upholds all natural laws doesn’t mean He wont let us know someday.

    “imagine if science were as dogmatic as your religion. we would be stuck in the dark ages.”

    It was Deists who took us out of that age, such as Newton, Copernicus, and Gelileo.

    “i find your faith to be very weak indeed if you are so desperate to find scientific explanations for your god.”

    This statement is halarious, because all atheists I’ve encountered demand for evidence of Him because their faith is so week even though they need Him to even make irrational arguments against Him. And the experiment of dying will be a good test as a final proof. I can’t wait to try it!


  3. making a statement doesn’t make that statement true. if you are really going to suggest that the statement, “we do science to better understand the world around us” has only a metaphysical answer, then you should fully explain and reconcile that claim with some sort of logic.

    it just happens that my “presupposition” is based on an actual definition of the word supernatural, ie. unexplainable by natural law. if it happens to be that supernatural is a word that describes something that is observable then we would need a redefining of the word. until then, this point must be conceded.

    now, maybe calling you arrogant on your own site is rude and arrogant of me or maybe i would expect the same treatment if what i was saying was arrogant. just because you veil your arrogance with passive statements like, “so many so called scientists” doesn’t mean that your arrogance has been effectively hidden. are you a scientist yourself or are you merely judging other scientists based on the talking points from various creationist proponents?

    there is a huge difference between deism and theism for one thing. for another, there is a even bigger difference between newton and anyone at the discovery institute, for example. time and time again creationists points fail and yet they continue to parade them as if they had meaning. this is disingenuous and can’t be called science. it’s a theological agenda.

    no atheist, which i’m not by the way, needs to demand evidence of a god. the only problem arises when people attempt to use their religious opinions and choices to pollute science by sidestepping the rigor that is necessary for something to be affirmed by science.

    here you say it all and i couldn’t agree more. you have no proof in this world so you are relying on an afterlife to get your proof. that is just fine with me as it is basically a concession on your part that to argue the existence of a prime mover is pointless and thereby of no use in a science class and of no use when forming rules in our society. it belongs in a history or culture studies class, not elsewhere.


  4. making a statement doesn’t make that statement true. if you are really going to suggest that the statement, “we do science to better understand the world around us” has only a metaphysical answer, then you should fully explain and reconcile that claim with some sort of logic.

    “Better understanding the world” is a reason. Reasons tie into “purpose”. Purpose is metaphysical. It is not found under rocks or made up of atoms.

    it just happens that my “presupposition” is based on an actual definition of the word supernatural, ie. unexplainable by natural law.

    Natural laws aren’t explainable by natural laws.

    now, maybe calling you arrogant on your own site is rude and arrogant of me or maybe i would expect the same treatment if what i was saying was arrogant.

    OK

    are you a scientist yourself or are you merely judging other scientists based on the talking points from various creationist proponents?

    To even do science assumes my worldview.

    you have no proof in this world so you are relying on an afterlife to get your proof.

    You are my proof of God. And I said death would be a “final” proof.


  5. purpose is no more proof of the metaphysical than prayer. stick a needle in the right part of your brain and you no longer have purpose.

    no. semantic games won’t help your argument. just because we don’t know exactly what gravity is doesn’t mean there is no evidence for it. if you can’t see the difference between that and the supernatural, which exists only in our minds, as far as we know, then i really am just running my head into a brick wall.

    “to even do science assumes my worldview”

    that is one of those claims which you will need to fully explain if you want to be taken seriously.

    if i am your proof of god then you are even more entrenched in circular logic than i thought. you also need to learn about proofs and where they apply.


  6. So there is no real purpose for doing science? That’s your claim?

    I never said there wasn’t evidence for gravity. You’re changing the subject. Laws don’t make things happen. Something else makes things happen, thus when we recognize the uniformity, a law is formulated.

    the supernatural, which exists only in our minds

    Your mind uses the laws of logic. The laws of logic require rules which nature can’t account for. These laws don’t just describe how we think, but what is required for us to think. There is nothing in matter where we find these requirements.

    that is one of those claims which you will need to fully explain if you want to be taken seriously.

    I just explained it above.

    if i am your proof of god then you are even more entrenched in circular logic than i thought. you also need to learn about proofs and where they apply.

    No, you can’t use the laws of logic unless there is an eternal personal supernatural. I call that God. The problem with science today is that it assumes we can’t know things or should only seek to know things through empirical study. Yet, not all of science can be done and is done this way. I’m not saying it’s not important though. Because if you only say that seeing is believing, then you’ve become inconsistent because your belief can’t be seen.


  7. i really don’t understand your need to play games with my words. i have a feeling that you’re intelligent enough to grasp the points i’m making.

    how you get to “no purpose for doing science” from “purpose is no more proof of the metaphysical than prayer” is beyond me. this type of trickery is uncalled for.

    i’m not sure you have a fine enough grasp of logic to make your case. let’s start with one point go from there. pick one law of logic and make your case for why we need a god to use it.

    once again, you haven’t shown this to be true in the slightest. you’ve made claims but haven’t backed them up at all.

    and yes, our beliefs can be seen, in a way, via chemical reaction. you can change a persons belief system by changing their chemical signals or damaging their brain. beliefs amount to nothing more than chemical reactions, as far as we know.


  8. According to Naturalism it is inconsistent to say there is a purpose for doing science. Not according to my worldview though.

    I haven’t even mentioned prayer. I’m not sure what you’re talking about.

    pick one law of logic and make your case for why we need a god to use it.

    I thought I had done that already, but OK. How about the law of identity and excluded middle? These basically say there are universal abstract meanings. Meanings are 1. non-physical 2. personal (because to know them requires intelligence) 3. must be fixed (absolute). All this enables me and you to agree on the meanings which our words carry, thus can think and communicate. God is not confined to only the physical, He eternally thinks, is personal, and is immutable. Since we are created in His image, we can share in the universal meanings which He eternally knows.


  9. there is no such limit to naturalism. that is a limit born of opinion and imposed by those with a personal agenda.

    the word prayer was in my previous post which you mangled to fit your argument.

    1. – meanings are non physical. – we don’t know enough to determine that. what we do know enough to determine is that meanings change throughout time and meanings are reliant on the physical, or in other words, on us to give them meaning. remove all of us and as far as we know, there is no meaning.

    so the first leg of your logic falls under the weight of “not enough information”. that’s kind of the main point i’m trying to get across here is why would anyone, especially those who recognize human fallibility, form absolute conclusions about a life that we filter through our fallible senses without even a complete set of data?


  10. there is no such limit to naturalism. that is a limit born of opinion and imposed by those with a personal agenda.

    Sounds like a statement of faith. And the next question to ask is “which worldview is more consistent?” Given Christianity or Naturalism, Christianity makes more sense. Otherwise I could just appeal to your faith.

    Further, we can look at the second law of logic, the law of non-contradiction. Here’s where Naturalism gets into even more trouble. This says that the abstract universal meanings must not contradict each other. Now we have just leaped into the personal. Only an eternal person can account for the fact that universal abstract meanings SHOULDN’T contradict. Mindless matter cannot say that universal meanings shouldn’t contradict because it doesn’t know what contradicting is. This requires the personal. It requires intelligence.


  11. it’s not faith at all. remember we’re talking about a philosophy. this philosophy doesn’t make any statements as to the characteristics of material. material may well be limited in the way that you describe but to say that materialism is limited this way is incorrect. for that to be true you would have to show that material can not produce volition.

    well, first, as i have stated before, we would both need to be mathematical whizzes to continue making statements about non contradiction. you can look up russels paradox and see the laymen presentation of it just to get an idea that yes, contradiction are mathematically viable. you can also find that it still holds even with non contradiction. now, i can’t follow that formula. maybe you can. if not, then if we are to be sincere we can’t continue making statements about a topic we don’t fully understand.

    for the sake of argument, if we can get passed russels paradox then you still have all kinds of work to do to show that the only explanation for the logic of non contradiction is a necessary being. this would involve going back to the part about showing that matter can not produce volition. this would also necessitate ruling out any other arbitrary notion that anyone could come up with to account for the existence of a universe.

    if you have non contradiction and a necessary being then you either have a being that is limited by it’s creation or a being that has the potential to violate non contradiction, making the statement, “necessary being does not exist”, true.

    you see, it’s not as easy as you would hope. but at least you still have your faith.


  12. for that to be true you would have to show that material can not produce volition.

    Nope. Even by your preferred standard, the scientific method, we only have proof that intelligence comes from intelligence. I’m afraid it would be up to you to provide the counter example.

    if we can get passed russels paradox then you still have all kinds of work to do to show that the only explanation for the logic of non contradiction is a necessary being.

    No it just requires a simple thought experiment. In a Naturalistic universe, where we are just matter in motion in time and space, there are no atoms which can tell other atoms “you guys SHOULD behave this way instead of another way”. The standard of what SHOULD happen is non-material. This is what we have in the case of a real morality and the law of non-contradiction.

    contradiction are mathematically viable

    Nope. If this were the case, the formulas used to prove it could equally be said not to prove it. In which case we would still be assuming the law of non-contradiction.

    if you have non contradiction and a necessary being then you either have a being that is limited by it’s creation or a being that has the potential to violate non contradiction

    This isn’t my worldview. You’re arguing against thin air here. God does not invent this law of logic. It is how He eternally thinks. God eternally exists, thus the law does. The law of non-contradiction also can’t function unless there also exists identities (universal meanings) to distinguish. God is truine, thus is eternally distinguishable within Himself. Thus God’s own nature accounts for all three of the laws, and does so eternally. And God is immutable and good, so He doesn’t change from being what He is, thus He can’t one day begin contradicting. Like I said before, He doesn’t forfeit one attribute of Himself over another.


  13. all we know is material. as far as we know volition relies on material. we can even shape volition with a pin prick to the brain. it is still your burden to show if material can not produce volition.

    no. it does not require a simple thought experiment. that’s you molding a thought experiment to fit your opinion. an opinion, i might add, that is based on a severely limited understanding of the principles that you’re attempting to argue. unless, of course, your going to say that you have an excellent understanding of russels paradox, quantum superposition, dark matter, etc.

    your worldview does not fit with the cosmological argument that you’re espousing. the cosmological argument, in regards to attempts to call the uncaused cause a god, can only work with a deistic worldview. the immutability of this uncaused cause you refer to would limit it to making the initial decision of creation because that’s all it could do, it wouldn’t have a choice in other words to do anything but that which it does. if it was able to interact after the initial choice it would no longer be displaying that immutability.

    the trinity as a committee is not a good argument as it just leaves us with three beings with no external compass.

    john 5:31 – if i bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.


  14. Again, mindless matter has never been proven to produce intelligence. If by “volition” you mean intelligence then the burden is on you for only intelligence produces intelligence from all we’ve observed.

    A pin prick to the brain produces a twitch, not intelligence, so I’m not sure why you’re bringing it up.

    your worldview does not fit with the cosmological argument that you’re espousing.

    I never brought up the cosmological argument. I just said God was eternal and immutable. Now you’re changing the subject and by doing so you’re conceding the argument you originally raised.

    the cosmological argument, in regards to attempts to call the uncaused cause a god, can only work with a deistic worldview.

    That’s your opinion, but do you have any reasons for it? Further, Deism is a sub-catagory of Theism. They both have belief in a God, but believe different things about God’s nature and character.

    the immutability of this uncaused cause you refer to would limit it to making the initial decision of creation because that’s all it could do, it wouldn’t have a choice in other words to do anything but that which it does.

    No, to be consistent with your argumentation, God wouldn’t even have the choice to create the universe. I’ll be consistent for you and make your argument harder before I answer it.

    First, if God were forced to create the universe due to His fixed knowledge of all things, then His fixed knowledge would be God not Him and we’d be right back to the original argument. I would still be arguing for God’s existence, just slightly different then how I have been.

    Second, I could simply argue that God does what He prefers to do anyways. You’d have to explain why God might possibly prefer to do different then what He knows He’ll do. But this is assuming that God exists in time and space.

    God always acts in the present, as He is outside of time and space. This is what is assumed by saying God is eternal (not necessarily infinite). There’s a big difference between the two. God doesn’t do thing in the future from His angle. From our angle He is because we are limited to time and space. Your argument would only apply to creatures who have future actions in time and space thus are forced to act upon their knowledge of their future actions. From God’s angle, He doesn’t have future actions. This is why in Ex 3:14, God says, “I AM”.


  15. once again for the those in the cheap seats, all we can attest to is matter. we appear to have volition. volition appears to be reliant on matter. voila!

    a pin prick to the brain can cause much more than a twitch. have you ever heard of shock therapy? brain manipulation or accidental trauma can completely change personality. it can remove who a person was and replace them with an entirely different person.

    all that you have been arguing is the cosmological argument. do you want to abandon it now?

    yes, i’m fully aware of what deism and theism are. if you were it seems that you would not make the mistake of calling one a subcategory of the other. but that’s just one more little hint at the solipsist nature of theism.

    wow, you just repeated what i said all while saying i didn’t say it. you’re really blowing my mind. you really should try to grasp what you’re saying before you say it. furthermore, are you saying that all has been done already? that’s basically what it sounds like and if so, well, even if not so but really if so, it begs the question. you can’t it have it both ways, immutable and mutable.


  16. Yes and a back massage can cheer someone up. You seem to think that 1. I’m denying that material causes can produce non-physical affects (personality), and 2. that this proves that volition (free will) is made up of matter. If we are only a by product of our biological make up, then we have as much free will as a rock or a puddle of water.

    are you saying that all has been done already

    From God’s perspective, yes. From ours, no.


  17. not quite. i’m saying that there isn’t any proof for anything non physical. i wouldn’t claim that volition is made up of matter because we don’t know for certain. i’ve only said that we appear to have volition and that it appears to be reliant on matter. this doesn’t make a conclusive statement but indicates that as far as we know, material accounts for volition. i don’t know enough to make absolute statements regarding these possible planes of reality that we’re conjecturing about. i don’t think anyone does.


  18. i’m saying that there isn’t any proof for anything non physical.

    Our conversation is proof of this. I’m not using the physical to prove the non-physical, but the non-physical to prove the non-physical. We are both using abstract universal meaning, which are non-physical, in order to communicate right now.

    this doesn’t make a conclusive statement but indicates that as far as we know, material accounts for volition.

    No, as far as we know, Naturalists try to believe this. Free will requires ‘intentions’ and intentions are not physical. Humans can’t see intentions, but can see the effects of intentions in the physical realm. But this is no reason to conflate the two.


  19. there is every reason to conflate the two. as far as we know, all of these abstract meanings rely on material. this is the only evidence that we have. this is where your statement, “naturalists try to believe this” comes back to bite you because whereas a naturalist explanation views the evidence that we do have and uses that to make a practical determination of, “as far as we know”, you are stating absolutely that this is the case but without any evidence other than that of your personal opinion of what thoughts and intentions are.


  20. It could be your personal opinion that I’m wrong, so why should I go off that? I haven’t physically observed your opinion, only read about it. So your opinion about my opinion doesn’t need to be taken seriously by me, according to your logic.

    all of these abstract meanings rely on material

    So tell me what in nature says that we ought to not contradict?

    So contradictions could never be possible unless there is the existence of matter? So how would someone be prevented from contradicting prime numbers if there were no matter? Prime numbers are not made up of matter.

    And not only do Naturalists view physical observable evidence. So do Supernaturalists. This isn’t the point. The point is the problem with the Naturalistic worldview which holds that all that exists is the physical realm.


  21. that works, of course, if you want to go off of just what i’m writing. the problem comes if you do some research. you’ll find that there are physical explanations for our emotions and many of our thought processes that are agreed upon by many other people, experts in the field of cognitive neuro science. as far as i know, there are no research studies that have been done or are being done that would indicate that thoughts and intentions aren’t reliant on the physical and thus separate.

    nothing in nature needs to “tell” us not to contradict. as far as we know, outside of mathematical formulas, we can’t contradict. if there are two apples, that’s it. there are two apples.

    we’re getting into a realm of near sillyness here. there’s no way to predict what a universe with no matter would be like. someone couldn’t contradict prime numbers if there were no matter because there would be no “someone”.

    once again, when we have solid evidence of something existing beyond the physical realm, then that’s something to go on. for now, all we know is that even the supposed metaphysical thought and intention process relies on the physical. this would indicate that it is physical and anything else would be unfounded speculation. not necessarily wrong, just unfounded at this point.


  22. that works, of course, if you want to go off of just what i’m writing. the problem comes if you do some research. you’ll find that there are physical explanations for our emotions and many of our thought processes that are agreed upon by many other people, experts in the field of cognitive neuro science.

    I’m taking a class on this in college right now and have a book which gives the opinions of the top people in this field of study. You’re making gigantic blanket statements. Most of the people in this field are still scratching their heads.

    as far as i know, there are no research studies that have been done or are being done that would indicate that thoughts and intentions aren’t reliant on the physical and thus separate.

    You don’t know what you’re saying. This is one of the most confusing and un-scientific fields out there. No one opens the brain and says “ah ha!”. Here is an intention.

    And what in nature requires that these researchers not contradict and use immaterial classes in order to indicate anything whatsoever? You see, the immaterial must first be assumed before anyone can set out to find if there is an immaterial.

    someone couldn’t contradict prime numbers if there were no matter because there would be no “someone”.

    So you’re basically saying that contradictions are dependent upon matter. So before this Universe began, contradictions weren’t required to think but now they are required in order for us to think? You’re still proving my worldview. What in nature requires there to be contradictions so that we can think in terms of contradictions and distinguish between things? I could use you new and shaky worldview of pure empiricism against you here. So far, there is no evidence that nature by itself comes up with requirements for abstract laws, such as the abstract law of non-contradiction and immaterial classes by which we identify things.

    once again, when we have solid evidence of something existing beyond the physical realm, then that’s something to go on. for now, all we know is that even the supposed metaphysical thought and intention process relies on the physical. this would indicate that it is physical and anything else would be unfounded speculation. not necessarily wrong, just unfounded at this point.

    The laws of logic do not depend on the physical. You are equating them to natural laws where nature reveals the law. The laws of logic must stay the same, even if nature changes, in order for us to think. They must exist before nature also otherwise they were invented, thus can be re-invented. But if the laws of logic change, then no one can think. Nothing in the physical can require the laws of logic to function how they do. Only an eternal mind can provide this criterion.

    Again, you must first assume the meta-physical to even say we have no evidence of the meta-physical.


  23. you’re misunderstanding my statements. i realize that this is an area that has many “blow your mind” aspects to it that no one has figured out. i’m not saying that we have intention in a jar somewhere. i’m saying that all of these functions are reliant on material, that they change when material changes, that there is evidence for this but no evidence for the opposite other than the lack of our ability to put intention into a jar. we can put the chemicals that cause these “metaphysical” properties into a jar. what we can’t do is present any viable evidence that leads us to assuredness that these properties exist without material.

    i never said that metaphysical research shouldn’t be done. i’m glad it is being done and hope that some day something conclusive can be found, pointing either direction. i’m talking about what we have to work with now.

    there’s that word, “proving” again:) there is every indication that these laws exist intrinsically in nature. i won’t use your language here, “comes up with” because this implies intention and there need be no such implication. even so, we have such an incomplete set of data, especially regarding quantum mechanics, which seems to be revealing more and more regarding our old concepts of contradiction. it would be unwise for us to make any presumptive, absolute statements, especially without having a complete set of data.

    you say, “The laws of logic do not depend on the physical.” give me an example, one example of some situation where there is no physical but the law of contradiction still applies. this seems to be impossible. you say, “Nothing in the physical can require the laws of logic to function how they do. Only an eternal mind can provide this criterion.”
    no one single part of the physical can force a requirement on a universal law but you have to look at it from the perspective of the entire set. the entire set itself is the requirement. if it was a different set, it may be a different requirement. the assertion that an eternal mind is the only explanation for a universal law just doesn’t work. that may be your belief but it stands on opinion alone, nothing more.

    you say, “Again, you must first assume the meta-physical to even say we have no evidence of the meta-physical.”

    this is a clever bit of wordplay. how about, you must first assume multiple universes to even say we have no evidence for them. while this statement is true, what meaning does it really hold for this debate? none. your statement is even more overly simplistic than that. you’re basically saying that all people have to go off of the assumption that there is metaphysical before they can say that there isn’t evidence for it. this just doesn’t follow.


  24. Cameron – Hey if you crack a science book(not ID book) you might learn something. When you get done, look me up and I will direct you towards information to ditch your religious infection.


  25. Science requires observers who observe the observable. The origins of all three can’t presently be detected with the scientific process. We rely on historical sciences to account for these things, which deals a lot with theory.

    To have an observer you need life. So does life come from non-life to you? To observe requires intelligence. So does intelligence come from non-intelligence to you? The observable assumes it came from a cause. Yet an infinite amount of causes can’t be the case.

    Accounting for all of this, thus science, perfectly comports with the Christian worldview. So what “information” do you want to give me? And maybe that information will all the more project me towards Christianity and increase my faith.


  26. I personally could take god, or leave (him/her/them/it?) alone.
    Arguing the existence, or lack their of, of God seems like arguing about the contents of a box that cannot be opened, and that no living person can see into. And there are large groups of people who, because of some scribbled notes of a couple of guys who claimed to have taken a peek in a few thousand years ago, waged ruthless and bloody battle a while back and are still nursing grudges and sore knuckles about it.

    Like I said, don’t really care if a god exists,
    but I enjoy a good argument.


    • Ps. You should have an agnosticism section.


  27. Thanks Jon. Maybe someday I’ll get that up. I think we are all agnostic on many things, however. And I will say that agnosticism is very interesting to me on 2 scores. 1. It’s actually more intellectually honest than atheism (which atheists hate to admit). 2. If I wasn’t a Christian I’d hope that I wouldn’t be so anti-Christ that I would actually be an agnostic.


    • I, at least, talk with people about their religion. Sometimes just to learn more, and other times with other reasons.
      One time I was trying to build a metaphor that described god’s interaction with people.
      (don’t ask me what it wound up being, it was a while ago)
      The guy I was talking to ended up getting very upset, and I felt kind of bad.

      The reasoning behind me not caring if god exists (such as it is) is something like this;
      If god built the word or a ‘sciencey explanation’ did, it’s done.
      If god, fate or whatever control our destiny than any choices I make are already decided, and if there is no such thing as destiny then my choices are my own. I don’t get to decide between the two.
      To me, believing in a god would be more like a ‘just in case’ belief, a supernatural hard hat if you will. But if a god does exist, and I picked the wrong hat, I might be in more trouble than if I just say “Oh, you do exist. My bad.”

      Another part of my non belief is an experience I had with Christians in Africa.
      My grandparents and I joined up with a local mission group that was going to Uganda to build a house in an aids orphans community (Watoto group). Neither my grandparents, nor myself, are Christian. I was immensely frustrated with the habit of the Christians there to assume that they are better than non christians.
      We were warned before going to the worksite, not to leave any valuables in the open because “not all the workers are Christian.”
      They also never, never thanked us. They thanked god for sending us, but not us. I understand their thinking, but that doesn’t fly with me. Thank god, sure, but also thank the people who are standing in front of you shaking your hand.


      • Huh. Sorry for the rant!? Didn’t realize I wrote that much.


      • no worries. I wasn’t there so I don’t know. “Thank God for you” can be a figure of speech. I don’t know how they meant it. The Bible teaches 1. no one is perfect, and 2. even those whom have a changed mind and heart in Christ are still with sin until they die. So no Christian is Jesus. Every Christian still needs Jesus.

        I fully understand how there are so many voices out there telling us what is the right truth and what to believe. In our current information age it’s a catch 22. We have access to so much research, history, and scholarly work. We have much to stand on and available to our lazy fingertips. The catch is that no one has time to study it all so that they can try to come to a consistent conclusion.

        I would assert to you, however, after all my studying and continual studying, that theism makes the most sense of the world, and that Christianity makes the most sense out of theism (thus the world as well).


      • I think the ‘thank god for you’ comments are a figure of speech, but a cultural one. Its not just the words either, its the body language, and the overall spin on the conversations. In the places the group visited the only other people were devout Christians, and hardly ever interacted with non Christians. The entire village, and the two others like it were communities populated only by Christians and children up to the age of fourteen.
        Call me a conspiracy nut, but I was a little concerned. I asked some of the directors of the program whether non Christian adults were allowed to live in the villages, and I never got a straight answer.
        I don’t deny the good these communities do, but if these same villages were run by any other group I suspect they would be called compounds, and wouldn’t be received nearly as well.

        moving on.

        You said “I fully understand how there are many voices out there telling us what the right truth is and what to believe.”
        The right truth.
        That’s exactly it.
        A truth for you, and a truth for me. And the best part of that is they can both be true. In science, an ion can be seen as both a wave and a particle, so why not belief. Christians believe in an all powerful god controlling the universe, Hindus believe in a bunch of gods, scientologists believe in … something. Can’t they all be true?


  28. That’s really cool you have that experience of doing that kind of work abroad. Many people will never have the perspective you can gain from that experience. Sorry the Christians acted flaky. I’ve known Christians whom were phony and one’s whom were awesome people, and same for atheists being the same way. If I was there I would have loved to talk.

    In the physics realm there are apparent contradictions in nature, however, they may just be apparent, not “real” contradictions. There’s a major difference between saying that nature can have these seemingly contradictory properties, from saying abstract truth can as well. They are two completely different things. In fact, we depend on A = A for us to be able to think logically thus have this conversation and have it be a real conversation, not just the illusion of it. Otherwise if 1+1 can also = 1,003 then we can’t communicate. Even if nature can contradict itself then that only tells us what nature does. Yet, for us to be able to think and communicate, we CANNOT begin contracting ourselves. What may be true for the non-personal realm does not necessarily cross over to the personal sentient realm.

    I would argue that we need an eternal starting point to account for time, space, matter, and energy. I would also argue we need this eternal starting point to be personal and all-good (by having eternal relationship within itself), thus can account for our non-physical realities of logic and morality. The thing is, only the God of Scripture is defined this way. All other gods are defined to exist in time, and/or do not arrive on the scene in human history in a redemptive context (which we need because we’re sinful). In a nut shell, I’d argue they lack the starting point of what is the necessary precondition for reality as we know and live every day.



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