Discussions Religion and Theology, Scriptures, Bible Debate, etc.
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First off i would like to present my side of the argument. I personally believe that atheism by it's literal definition is not dogmatic since there is no central governing body to Atheism. However there are many Figures of authority within the atheist community, Furthermore there are basic atheistic beliefs that one can adhere to dogmatically. Therefore an atheist can be dogmatic. My number one Arguer who i constantly debate atheism with goes by the name Reboot. I am The Lotus Eater 725. Basically i would like to know where you think i could have made my argument stronger ( i know i forgot to finish a sentence i didn't hit the edit button soon enough to fix it ) and what merits his argument has over mine. So far i feel that him and i are both right. But still he is clinging to this absurd notion that it is impossible for an atheist to be dogmatic. What do the Resident Atheists here have to say on this and what do the resident Skeptics, Theists (if there are any besides me) and spirtualists, etc think?
You presented your begining argument very well. The definitions, combined with your statement does imply that your above statement is very accurate.
I am neither an athesist or skeptic. However, I do subscribe to a religion without a central governing body and no absolute rules. The religion has no dogma to speak of, yet individuals can get very dogmatic about how they practice the 'faith'.
Ok so here is the response i have stacked up in response to him, just to warn you it is a wall of text. I try to keep things short, but because they argue the basic semantics of EVERYTHING it invariably results into a long speech.
So you mean to tell me that it is literally impossible for a person to dogmatically adhere to atheism? But there are core beliefs and figures of authority among atheists. Richard Dawkins,Christopher Hitchens, James Randi. All are regarded as figures of authority on the subject of atheism and as such are AUTHORITIES THAT OTHERS MAY RELY ON TO DICTATE WHAT IS AND IS NOT ATHEISM. Whether you like it or not there are atheists out there who do EXACTLY this. Does this account for all atheists? No it does not.
<blockquote>The Holy Trinity is a dogma of Catholicism (and most other mainstream Christian churches). But there's really no evidence for it, either in the Bible or the natural world. And even if you did independently come to the conclusion that there is a god, you would never figure out that he's actually 3 different entities that a merged into one without having someone explicitly tell you that.</blockquote>
Really ? And you have spoken to every single christian in the world in order to determine that all of them arrived at the concept of the trinity because they were told it was real? Do you want to know something interesting about the trinity?
The Pythagorean Theorem is not a dogma because, even though you probably heard it first from an authority, it can be proven through logic."Evolution is not a dogma, whether or not someone believes in it, because it is based on evidence."</blockquote>
First off you are shoehorning an irrelevant example of mathematics to prove that atheism is not dogmatic. Pythagoras Theorem has nothing to do with Whether or not there is a god and it has absolutely nothing to do with atheism. But i'm going to bite here. Pythagoras theorem IS a dogma because you are assuming that the "logical" Conclusion is the correct conclusion. Now for all intents and purposes pythagoras theorem has proven itself to multiple people as being a logical truth correct? I've used it before so i have first hand experience in the claimed veracity of it. And because groups of people say that Pythagoras Theorem is a foolproof theorem does that mean it truly is? Because a group of people say that there is a god then does that mean that there is a god? Because a group of scientists argue that there is no god based on a lack of evidence for god does that mean that there is no god?
What does evolution have to do with this? You forget that religious people such as myself believe that evolution is a viable explanation for how life was created. But i'll bite anyways
The only reason you believe in evolution is because Biologists who study the subject told you it happened. Did you witness man evolve from Ape? Did you observe the evolution of the Archeopteryx? Were you there On the archeological digs that discovered our supposed evolutionary ancestors? Have you devoted your whole life to the study of biological evolution? No you were not there to see any of that. All of your knowledge about science,evolution, ANYTHING that you hold was TAUGHT TO YOU BY ANOTHER PERSON. A person who was "QUALIFIED" therefore A FIGURE OF AUTHORITY. No matter how many times you tell yourself "there is no authority" THERE IS AN AUTHORITY. You were not born with the ability to instantly know everything you do now without prior instruction. At the end of the day you have to have faith that your fellow scientists/peers accurately Observed,Reported, critiqued and published the correct sets of data. Science is not a purely objective effort, it is IMPOSSIBLE to be 100% objective. No matter how much you hate it there is a degree of faith in everything that you do.
I do the same exact thing. I know that overvolting my CPU can lead to increased heat output because the websites and columnists who specialize in this have given me instruction based off a set of information they have deemed to be true. Does this mean that they are lying? No, But it does not mean that they are telling the truth either. I have faith that they are being honest and that the science behind it is correct in its analysis and interpretation.
A belief that is held by all atheists? Come on reboot do not be naive with me.
The following definition of Atheism was given to the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Murray v. Curlett, 374 U.S. 203, 83 S. Ct. 1560, 10 L.Ed.2d (MD, 1963), to remove reverential Bible reading and oral unison recitation of the Lord's Prayer in the public schools.
“Your petitioners are Atheists and they define their BELIEFS as follows. An Atheist loves his fellow man instead of god. An Atheist BELIEVES that heaven is something for which we should work now – here on earth for all men together to enjoy.
An Atheist BELIEVES that he can get no help through prayer but that he must find in himself the inner conviction, and strength to meet life, to grapple with it, to subdue it and enjoy it.
believes that only in a knowledge of himself and a knowledge of his fellow man can he find the understanding that will help to a life of fulfillment.
He seeks to know himself and his fellow man rather than to know a god. An Atheist BELIEVES that a hospital should be built instead of a church. An Atheist BELIEVES that a deed must be done instead of a prayer said. An Atheist strives for involvement in life and not escape into death. He wants disease conquered, poverty vanquished, war eliminated. He wants man to understand and love man.
He wants an ethical way of life. He BELIEVES that we cannot rely on a god or channel action into prayer nor hope for an end of troubles in a hereafter.
He believes that we are our brother's keepers; and are keepers of our own lives; that we are responsible persons and the job is here and the time is now.”
While many Atheists have an intense interest in religions, enjoy debating theists, and can intelligently discuss the various holy books (that's debatable), Atheism can be discussed and celebrated for its own sake.
All atheists believe that there IS NO GOD,Paranormal force or supernatural force, and claim to arrive to this conclusion for either philosophical or "scientific" reasons. Despite the fact that there is no proof FOR OR AGAINST paranormal,supernatural or religious claims.
But i already know what you are going to do with this argument.
“Atheists don’t hold the belief that God doesn’t exist. An Atheist is one who is without a belief in God, or lacks a belief in him. Therefore atheists CAN'T be dogmatic”
And you will emphasize that your position is not that they believe that “God doesn’t exist”, but that they don’t believe in God. You will then point out that the definition of Atheism is to be without belief in God because the “A” in “A - theism” means “without” and “theism” means “belief in God”. However, this makes little difference either way because their core philosophy is the POSTIVE STANCE THAT GOD DOES NOT EXIST. An opinion, therefore a belief. Regardless of either definition, the Atheist obviously believes that there is no God or deity anywhere anyway, which is prevalent in their attempts to debunk and refute every single argument for the existence of God.
I have yet to see a single argument posed by an atheist where they positively state " A god may exist but i have yet to find any evidence that would compell me to believe so" nine out of ten times it is " THERE IS NO GOD"
Which brings me to my next point.
A common atheist statement is that " THERE IS NO EVIDENCE FOR GOD!"
The atheist does not disbelieve in God because he neutrally examined all the evidence, and drawn the proper conclusion that there is no God. Instead the atheist radically misconstrues or flat out ignores the plentiful evidence for God, and he does this because he is already preconditioned with the positive belief that their is no god, which tells him that only the physical really exists. Before he has examined the evidence, the atheist thinks he knows that nothing non-physical actually exists, and this gross assumption dictates how he responds to the evidence. Consider this: 90% of the world ( 5 400 000 000 people, a carl sagan BILLION) believes in a god or gods of some sort. Has the Atheist in question gone up to every single one of these people to verify their claims? No, It would be impossible for him to do so, therefore the claim that there is no evidence for god is an article of faith in that he believes every single claim of evidence for god is fraudulent/a lie without having either personally verified or given evidence to verify.
Atheism boldly declares there is no God. This is a position science cannot take.
Again reboot, Prove to me that atheists are incapable of being dogmatic. We have already established that atheism itself is not dogma since it does not rely on a specific belief systems. I want cold hard evidence to prove your positive. I have demonstrated to you TWICE now that atheists are capable of being dogmatic, do not make some weak attempt at shifting the burden of proof. Don't Dance around the question by saying WELL YOU ARE DOGMATIC BECAUSE YOU BELIEVE IN GOD ATHEISTS DON'T BELIEVE IN ANYTHING BUT EVIDENCE AND ARRIVE TO CONCLUSIONS ON THEIR OWN!1ONE Because i can dogmatically adhere to the belief i came up with because i consider myself an authority on what is and is not part of my existence. You CAN NOT escape it no matter how much semantical arguing you use.
It's good. However, I bet that a revisit of taffy flavors pops up again to defuse the convo.
i used to enjoy
to discuss about religion back when i discovered i was an atheist
i just simply dont care about religion anymore
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
There are two major problems you are having here.
The first is that you two have not agreed upon the definition of terms. Specifically, there is no evidence that you both agree on the meaning of the terms dogma, belief, etc. Get agreement on the meaning of terms before going on, otherwise you'll get silly arguments like "atheism isn't a belief, it is a non-belief."
The second is that although you're taking this as an enjoyable philosophical argument (not an angry argument, but a philosophical argument where you present theses, concepts, ideas, leading to a logical conclusion) while ignoring the basic belief your worthy opponent maintains: his emotions and experiences as an atheist. He didn't just become an atheist over night. He probably spent many years developing his beliefs and reading what others wrote. As a result, everything he thinks and believes now, not just his atheism, is tightly wound into his beliefs as an atheist. If you were to get him to change his mind, on an unconscious level he would then have to re-examing everything he holds dear, everything he considers to be true. And the fact is, most people hold on to their faiths--be it Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or atheism--very strongly because they specifically don't have the courage to examine their other beliefs and ideas. Atheism is the tip of the iceberg. You're ignoring the 70% below water, in his unconscious mind.
So if you simply want to get your debating "muscles" going, then by all means, continue with what you're doing. But if you think you can get him to even consider other things, you're not going to succeed. It's like trying to put lipstick on a pig. It wastes your time and annoys the pig.
Wow don i did not even stop to consider. I hate to piss on you here but the debate has pretty much ended, he refused to be reasonable and insisted i was wrong, and i couldn't put up with it anymore. But still what you said is profoundly relevant none the less and i am probably going to refer to it again later on the road.
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