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When I say "chance" I mean "the occurrence and development of events in the absence of any obvious design." So, if you believe that there is no God, no matter how you believe the world was created, I would think that you would have to believe that the world exists because of chance.

Obviously, I can't debate every single viewpoint that any atheist has. So for now, since Martini has given one, I will try and address it.

Are there moral absolutes? No. Some think it is immoral to have a sexual fantasy, some do not. Are there absolute truths? I believe there must be only one truth, but there is no reason any other atheist must agree with me on either of these points.

If there are no moral absolutes, than nothing that anybody does can ever be condoned as wrong because maybe it was 'right for him.' You can't say that Hitler was wrong or that Stalin was wrong. Maybe it was 'right for them.' In that case, you shouldn't ever attack or harm or tell anyone that they are wrong, since it might be 'right for him.' You could possible make the argument that if what somebody does interferes with what you are doing, than you could defend yourself, but even that is a moral absolute, and you still can't say that Hitler or Stalin were wrong, you can only defend yourself.

Listening to people who have no understanding of evolution talk about what couldn't have happened is getting really tiring. There are many advantages for a group of animals to care about each other, to look out for their fellow's back. If a member looks out for the group, the individuals of the group will look out for that member. If one does something wrong, for example, kills a contributing member of the group, they now have a reputation, and the group will no longer be willing to look out for that member. Doing something bad for the group is discouraged by the group, and will lead to personal loss. Evolving to sympathize with pain that other members of your group will have if you hurt them helps to insure that the group will work to help one another, therefore helping each individual to better survive. This doesn't apply to cats, but to animals that live in societies such as chimps and bonobos, it certainly does. And yes, chimps are sometimes kicked out of the group if they are a bad seed.

It is very easy to see the purpose of morality from a Darwinian perspective. As governing dynamics states, "the best result will come when everyone in the group is doing what's best for him/herself and the group."

It seems to me that in most animal societies, it is each for himself. In fact, if the many animals were 'moral,' then evolution could not work as I understand it (granted, that is not a complete understanding by any means). Taking the example of cats. If the strong cats started giving all their food to the weak ones, and the sick ones, and the old ones, then the strong would die and the weak and old and sick ones would survive until all the strong ones were dead and than they would all die.

Also, there has been a lot of talk of proving or disproving God. It is impossible to disprove God and it is nearly impossible to prove God. I don't think that we should try to disprove or prove God, but that we should each give all the evidence that we can to support there being or not being a God. The one problem with that is that most evidence can be interpreted more than one different way. But I guess that is just how it is. So we will have to live with it.

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Right and Wrong is a matter of opinion, as Bociniki said, but the Law is the accepted majority of the views of right and wrong and are selected by the house of commons and lords (my politics is sketchy so correct me if im wrong). Also you elect a Prime minster/president who you think will be most fair and has the same views of right and wrong as you do.

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When I say "chance" I mean "the occurrence and development of events in the absence of any obvious design." So, if you believe that there is no God, no matter how you believe the world was created, I would think that you would have to believe that the world exists because of chance.

This has been discussed in this thread already. Of course there's chance involved, but looking at what happens after the fact and saying "now what are the chances of that happening" doesn't make much sense. It's not as if someone predicted those events and got it right and you have something to be astonished about. What are the chances that my parents were going to have sex the night I was conceived and my father ejaculated at the very moment he did so that that one sperm cell out of millions that makes me me would be in the right place to win the race to the egg cell? Pretty slim. But if it didn't happen you'd just be having this conversation without me and you'd be none the wiser.

Obviously, I can't debate every single viewpoint that any atheist has. So for now, since Martini has given one, I will try and address it.

Why? This thread isn't a debate about whether morals should be considered absolute or not.

If there are no moral absolutes, than nothing that anybody does can ever be condoned as wrong because maybe it was 'right for him.'

So, your list of absolute morals is the one the rest of the world should be judged on and whether or not it's not right for someone else is irrelevant? I don't want to get too deep into debating morals as that's not what this thread is about, but claiming that someone who believes there's no such thing as absolute morals can't live by their own moral code and find Hitler's acts abominable is ridiculous.

It seems to me that in most animal societies, it is each for himself. In fact, if the many animals were 'moral,' then evolution could not work as I understand it (granted, that is not a complete understanding by any means). Taking the example of cats. If the strong cats started giving all their food to the weak ones, and the sick ones, and the old ones, then the strong would die and the weak and old and sick ones would survive until all the strong ones were dead and than they would all die.

Does this thread have to become one that is about educating people about evolution?

Altruism in animals is well documented. We have evolved from early man who lived in hunter-gatherer societies. They lived by moral codes and helped members of their own group survive. No one said any animals, past or present, would give away all their food to weaker ones and die from starvation.

Also, there has been a lot of talk of proving or disproving God.

Aren't you paying attention? It has been brought up numerous times in this thread that no one is attempting to disprove God. Point out where this has been done or shut up about it already.

It is impossible to disprove God and it is nearly impossible to prove God. I don't think that we should try to disprove or prove God, but that we should each give all the evidence that we can to support there being or not being a God.

Same thing. Most people realize that there's no "absolute proof" for anything. When the amount of evidence for something is overwhelming, we call it a fact.

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Just to add to what Scraff was saying, kindness wouldn't go against evolution. Sure, the stronger animals could help the weaker ones by giving them food- but not giving them so much food that the stronger ones would then die. They still have themselves as the most important in their own eyes (or their mate, or more likely their offspring would be more important than themselves)

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Besides, saying that the universe couldn't have been there forever and a god must have created it, along with saying evolution couldn't have happened and describing miracles doesn't prove Christianity in the slightest

how do you know the God is your God?

Why not a bunch of polytheistic Gods?

The boundaries are unlimited

"If you're going to make up a rediculous all-powerful character, why does it have to be Superman? Why not the fantastic four?"

--Bill Maher--

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Firstly, I was not saying that "my set of morals is right." All I am discussing is whether there is any absolute morals. If there are, then we can try and figure out what they are, if there aren't, then why do most countries have similar laws and why have they for a long time. It seems to me like it is not logical that there are no moral absolutes.

Secondly, in response to Ploper, I am only saying that it seems like the most logical solution, based on what we know of the world, is that there is some kind of higher intelligence, I am not saying that the christian God is the right one. This thread was created, if I am not mistaken, to discuss whether or not there is a God, not, if there is a God, which one is it.

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Firstly, I was not saying that "my set of morals is right." All I am discussing is whether there is any absolute morals. If there are, then we can try and figure out what they are, if there aren't, then why do most countries have similar laws and why have they for a long time. It seems to me like it is not logical that there are no moral absolutes.

Start another thread if you want to discuss the existence of absolute morals. I told you this at least once.

Secondly, in response to Ploper, I am only saying that it seems like the most logical solution, based on what we know of the world, is that there is some kind of higher intelligence, I am not saying that the christian God is the right one. This thread was created, if I am not mistaken, to discuss whether or not there is a God, not, if there is a God, which one is it.

What evidence is there of a higher intelligence?

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When god made man - she was only joking!

I was sent to Sunday school (relig) which means that I was introduce (indoctrinated) by my parents. Either they thought I should be indoctrinated or they needed some time to their selves, I like to think the latter. It occurred to me that at some point they wanted someone else to “improve” their children or to help them stay on the straight and narrow. I chose my own path at some point. I guess I couldn’t make things add up or I lost faith or both.

I think that religion is a basis for teaching fundamental guidance and possibly the story has been embellished to fit all the possible combinations as well as “explaining the unexplainable”. this may be seen as an easy cop out, But sometimes the simple explanation is the best - not saying I am the best, just my theory. We might say that in some times and some places it has or still serves it’s purpose in this. That’s probably why I do not push for one way or another. If it necessary for people to believe to keep themselves in check then it is not a poor choice, maybe there is another way for them.

I have enjoyed talking to people about their faith/belief. There is a diverse amount of omnipresent beings in the ether or just one with different names. So, have people adapted rather than adopted their belief where it suits. It becomes confusing when you take into account the many factions that have formed or separated into something “better” or “more suitable”.

I am happier where I am with my beliefs, which is to believe in mankind or fellowship. The other choice would be to say if your not in my club your not acceptable or in a lower cast etc.

I still can’t comprehend the universe imploding and exploding in perpetual motion, but it works as well as any other theory . For the moment I have to accept that science is working on it and will come up with infinite answers. The problem for me is that it does seem to be huge beyond comprehension.

God joke http://brainden.com/forum/index.php?showto...amp;#entry10550

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ah man, lets not go here again

Why? Someone claimed based on what we know of the world the most logical solution is that a god exists. This is the place to go there again.

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yeah I realised that you asked for proof when they said they had it after I had gotten off

then some freinds came over so I didn't have a chance to correct myself until just now

but looks like you beat me to it :D

so yeah, bociniki

what was this evidence again?

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I don't think I can give any evidence. When I talk about evolution, I am told that this is not the right thread and to start another one. When I talk about morals, I am told this is the wrong topic for this thread and to start a new one. Is there really any direct evidence for against God? I think there is very little direct evidence for or against God besides the Bible, which you can easily discredit by saying you don't believe in the Bible. If I would began pointing out why the Bible was true, I would probably be told that this is not the right thread for it. I believe in the God who created the universe. Yes, I was 'brainwashed' and still am being 'brainwashed,' but many times being emersed in something is the best way to disprove it. So far I have found little in Christianity that I or somebody else could not easily explain. There are a few things that I don't understand at the moment, but I would be very surprised if I did not figure them out soon except for the things that are incomprehensible (for example, eternity). Also, if I know that I have been and am being 'brainwashed' is it really brainwashing?

There is also one more thing.

Even if there is no God. Even if this world just happened. Even if there is no point in Life. Even if there are no absolute morals, if I see no incongruity in there being a God and what I can observe in the world, then I ain't going to change what I believe if people who have studied more and lived longer than I can "rebut" my arguments and present arguments that I can't rebut. You might call this closed minded, but if you had grown up all your life in a Christian home and had seen and heard many supposedly smart and knowledgeable people how believe in evolution, professors and scientists and doctors, get 'beaten' in argument after argument by those who believe in God, and have seen the difference that being a Christian can do to people, and have heard the God of the universe speak to you, wouldn't you talk a lot of convincing to change your beliefs?

I submit to you that if a man has not discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live.

--- Martin Luther King

Just to let you all know, I would love to continue this debate if there is anything more to debate, I am not giving up or conceding or closing my mind. If you have any thing to say, I will listen.

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and heard many supposedly smart and knowledgeable people how believe in evolution, professors and scientists and doctors, get 'beaten' in argument after argument by those who believe in God,

first: could you give an example?

Second: The man who does not require evidence can beat the man who does any day of the week

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I think there is very little direct evidence for or against God besides the Bible, which you can easily discredit by saying you don't believe in the Bible. If I would began pointing out why the Bible was true, I would probably be told that this is not the right thread for it.

Go for it. This is definitely the place for that. Tell us why everything in the Bible must be true. What is it? Because it's old? Because it was written by not just one person but like 20 or something? Because it mentions true events? What is your proof that all of the Bible is real?

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When I talk about evolution, I am told that this is not the right thread and to start another one. When I talk about morals, I am told this is the wrong topic for this thread and to start a new one.

Part of moderating a forum is making sure that threads don't become a free for all where anything that a poster mentions becomes a new area of discussion. Allowing a discussion of whether or not absolute morals exist would be allowing a blatant hi-jack of the thread. Why is it too much to ask from you to start another thread? It only takes a few seconds more than posting in a current one and it will attract participants that want to discuss that particular subject.

I think there is very little direct evidence for or against God besides the Bible, which you can easily discredit by saying you don't believe in the Bible.

One doesn't discredit something by saying they don't believe in it. It is up the one making the claim to provide evidence, not for the skeptic to disprove it it. And the Bible is no more evidence, direct or otherwise, for a god than is the Koran, the Bhagavad Gita or the Talmud.

If the most important stories found in the OT and NT are even remotely historic, then scientific evidence should exist for an escape of large numbers of Jews from Egypt in the 13th century BCE and 40 years of wandering in the desert. It does not. Physical evidence should exist for a Golden Age in a combined kingdom of Israel and Judea around 1000 BCE and the Temple of Solomon. It does not.

Historical evidence should also exist for the extraordinary events reported to have occurred at the time of Jesus’ birth. It does not. From the absence of evidence that should exist from the scientific and historical record, we can conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that these extraordinary events did not take place as the Bible describes.

The genealogy of Jesus can be traced back to Adam and Eve using the Bible. It spans about 4000 years. If the first humans lived 6000 years ago, all scientific evidence should point to that. It does not.

The Bible reads as an assembly of myths fashioned by ancient authors who had no concept of historical accuracy. It’s description of the world reflects the scientific and historical knowledge of the age in which the manuscripts were composed.

The information and insights contained in scriptures and other revelations look just as they can be expected to look if there is no God who revealed truths to humanity that were recorded in sacred texts.

but if you had grown up all your life in a Christian home and had seen and heard many supposedly smart and knowledgeable people how believe in evolution, professors and scientists and doctors, get 'beaten' in argument after argument by those who believe in God, and have seen the difference that being a Christian can do to people, and have heard the God of the universe speak to you, wouldn't you talk a lot of convincing to change your beliefs?

Unless you have a very good grasp of evolutionary theory, how do you go about deciding when someone is defending evolution, and knows what he's talking about, has been defeated?

I submit to you that if a man has not discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live.

--- Martin Luther King

How is this quote relevant?

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I've discovered many things fit to die for. We all discover them, every day. Everything around us, the world, the earth, the universe, other people... they're all fit to die for. You don't need to have a god to have something that you would die for. So yeah the quote is irrelevant :D

also I think discussion of this is also going on in another topic between Scraff and Duh Puck I think, is there any way they can be merged?

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does it have to do with the topic of the other thread?

if not, then we should have them come here, because the posts on that thread should be about the topic

if it does, then we should go there and join in, eh?

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also I think discussion of this is also going on in another topic between Scraff and Duh Puck I think, is there any way they can be merged?

This thread is primarily a discussion on God existing or not. The other is a question of whether God can be all good with evil in the world. There's no reason to merge threads.

In the future, any discussion of whether or not threads should be merged, split, etc., should be done in private by PMing me.

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First, the Bible has been around for an extremely long time and has had amazing accuracy in coping. Second, the Christian religion is, I believe, the oldest religion that still survives and probably had and has the most followers. Third, many many people have tried to tear apart the Bible, yet it still stands. Fourth, some people didn't believe in a lot of the history in the Bible, yet again and again archaeologists and historians have found evidence supporting the history in the Bible. Fifth, there are many prophesies in the bible that were later fulfilled. Six, it was written by many different people over thousands of years, and yet it all follows the same thread and agrees with itself. Seventh, in my life and in those I know the message of the Bible works and leads to a better life and a transformed life.

Some of these are not good evidence by themselves (for example there are other books that have been around for a long time) but together, I think they make a very strong case.

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bociniki, these are not evidences for God existing.

Claiming that it's accurate without backing it up is meaningless. It's not the oldest religion, and if you think that is evidence for a religion being accurate you should be a Hindi before a Christian. Many people HAVE torn the Bible apart and every other religion. We have torn apart every argument that evolution doesn't happen but that doesn't stop ignorant folks from believing evolution doesn't happen, does it? No, archaeologists and historians have found that the biblical stories didn't happen- see Martini's last post. Yeah, and Nostradamus' prophesies were fulfilled too, right? Nonsense! No, it doesn't agree with itself. There are two creation accounts, two sets of Ten commandments and numerous contradictions. Please stop bothering to make claims unless you're willing to back them up. And can you please be considerate enough to finish up any points you'd like to make without waiting weeks or days before posting a rebuttal? It's called common message board etiquette.

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If you don't like me not backing up my evidence, you should back up yours. I can't really back up that the Bible all goes together because I would have to go through the entire Bible and I don't really have that kind of time. If you post a few of these 'disagreements' then I would be happy to answer them to the best of my knowledge. Christianity, before it was known as Christianity, was Judaism, which has been around for a very long time. Once again, give me some support for you claims. It is much easier to back up a negative claim than a positive one so the burden of proof is on you. At least, it was on me when I was debating evolution, so I don't see why it shouldn't be on you here.

I ready to (try) and refute all your claims. Bring it on!

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If you don't like me not backing up my evidence, you should back up yours. I can't really back up that the Bible all goes together because I would have to go through the entire Bible and I don't really have that kind of time. If you post a few of these 'disagreements' then I would be happy to answer them to the best of my knowledge. Christianity, before it was known as Christianity, was Judaism, which has been around for a very long time. Once again, give me some support for you claims. It is much easier to back up a negative claim than a positive one so the burden of proof is on you.

You've got it backwards. You're the one claiming the Bible is evidence for a god, the burden of proof is on you. You made claims in your last post that you didn't back up and you made claims that were not only meaningless but wrong.

At least, it was on me when I was debating evolution, so I don't see why it shouldn't be on you here.

I ready to (try) and refute all your claims. Bring it on!

No, for someone to claim that evolution exists he must supply the burden of proof. The evidence for evolution is overwhelming. See the thread on macro-evolution if you don't believe the burden of proof has been met.

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First, the Bible has been around for an extremely long time and has had amazing accuracy in coping.

So is the Quran, the Torah, etc. And Greek Mythology. And plenty of other non-religious books that predate the Bible. Just cuz something is old doesn't make it true.

Second, the Christian religion is, I believe, the oldest religion that still survives and probably had and has the most followers.

Again, something being old and popular doesn't make it automatically true. And if we're talking about the oldest religion, check this out. And this I found even more helpful. It talks about the Aborigines and Egyptians and Chinese. Both links I posted are short and easily read.

Third, many many people have tried to tear apart the Bible, yet it still stands. Fourth, some people didn't believe in a lot of the history in the Bible, yet again and again archaeologists and historians have found evidence supporting the history in the Bible.

Wrong. Yes, the Bible has been torn apart by many- and they suceeded. Many things in the Bible contradict themselves too.

I strongly recommend that everyone involved in the debate checks this out. The list is huge!

Fifth, there are many prophesies in the bible that were later fulfilled. Six, it was written by many different people over thousands of years, and yet it all follows the same thread and agrees with itself. Seventh, in my life and in those I know the message of the Bible works and leads to a better life and a transformed life.

Fifth: *cough* nostradamus. If you have any specific cases you believe are truly holy, please post them instead of alluding to it but not giving any actual proof

Sixth: No it doesnt. See above link about contradictions. But you're right about being written by many different people. This doesnt make it true- it would probably be more accurate though if many many biblical accounts that would've gone into the Bible were thrown out in the council led by Constatine. So the Bible is very exclusive, only letting in accounts that make it seem like the Ultimate Holy Book Ever.

Seventh: we're not disputing that. Religion is good for sense of community and morals and stuff. Nobody is debating that. But I hardly ever go to church (christmas and easter with my family are the exceptions) and I still have morals and wahtnot. So this isnt a part of the debate, really. There are many books and philosophies, some of them religious, some of them not religious, that can help you live your life better.

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As said on the first page of this discussion, it is impossible to prove 100% that there is a god of any sort, including Greek and Roman mythological gods. However, the Christian Bible states in Hebrews 11:1 that "Now faith is a substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen, for by it the elders obtained a good report." (Kind James Version) This means that faith is believing things that you can't prove, but still believing in them because of the evidences all around you. I remember my fifth grade teacher making us put "evidences of a creator" on every single one of our science tests. This reminded us that just by looking around, you can tell that there is a god of some kind. I.E., photosynthesis, the ability of green plants to make food for themselves, is an evidence of a creator, or at least some kind of higher power beyond what we can understand. It is unbelievable ridiculous that one of two atoms in space just happened to collide with the other ONE atom in space. Pardon me, but i just believe this is stupid because of the seemingly infinite vastness of space.

The last section "for by it the elders obtained a good report," means that our ancestors (Moses, Abraham, Jacob, Esau, Joseph, etc. . .) were rewarded for their strong faith in God. Also, I'm not sure where, but the Bible also states that, "with the faith of a mustard seed, you can move mountains." Now, this does not necessarily mean that it will happen. It will only happen if God sees fit that it should.

In the old testament of the Bible, it states that "as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up." Then, in the new testament, Jesus Christ "the Son of Man" is crucified on the cross "lifted up". This is merely on proof that the Bible is true. I am not saying, however, that other holy books are not true. Also, i am not saying that they are, because i do not know much about them.

Just thought I'd stick this out there. :]

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