Evidence that God is real

Discussion in 'Religion' started by James R, Aug 31, 2018.

  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The popularity of the bible is evidence that God is real?
     
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  3. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

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    Obviously! It's the only thing that separates it from other legends like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster.
     
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  5. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    By that logic, Santa Claus is even more real. (Oddly enough, Jan agrees with that.)
     
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  7. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    Add in the Tooth Fairy then

    Those coins don't just appear by themselves

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  8. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!


    (There wasn't an 'appeal to popularity fallacy', so bandwagon will have to do.)
     
  9. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    Can you show a direct cause-and-effect relationship between the spread of Christianity and the Bible? I doubt it. After all, for most of the history of Christianity, few Christians could read. The Bible seems to be little more than a prop.
     
  10. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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  11. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

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    It helps that for hundreds of years it was the only book available in the west... where the printing press was invented.
     
  12. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, the first council of Nicaea was a complete non-event in the history of christianity, because a vast majority of people were illiterate during the waning of the Roman empire.
     
  13. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    The question was, "Can you show a direct cause-and-effect relationship between the spread of Christianity and the Bible?" That is, can you show that Christianity spread because the Bible is true? A council on church policy doesn't answer that question.
     
  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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  15. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

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    Your "that is ..." doesn't follow your first q.
    Are you asking for something related to history and the spread of christianity or are you asking about the validity of the claims of christianity?
     
  16. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    Yet more dishonest posting* from an overt Abrahamic theist:
    The only question of interest is why: Why do these guys pretend to misread, post misrepresentations, and so forth, on these science forums?

    Note that the prospect of getting anything relevant to the thread from them - anything along the lines of providing or discussing evidence that their God, or anyone else's, is "real" - is seen in that response to be hopeless, and seen by the normality of that response to never have been a serious possibility.

    * In response to this: "Can you show a direct cause-and-effect relationship between the spread of Christianity and the Bible?"
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018 at 4:08 AM
  17. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Yes. At one point, Jan told me that Santa Claus is a "real fantasy figure". But when I asked him if it would then be fair to describe God as a real fantasy figure, I don't think he ever managed to give a straight answer. Funny about that.
     
  18. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    But that, in itself, is an interesting outcome from the thread, I think.

    I mean, it's a simple question: what's the evidence that God is real? Is there any?

    If the theists can't or won't attempt an answer, what does that say about their belief? To me, it suggests that (a) they regard the commonly-suggested evidences to be too weak to stand scrutiny, and (b) their belief is therefore not evidence-based.

    I wonder if any of our resident theists will be willing to admit that their belief is not based on evidence.
     
  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    That would be a boast - not an admission.
    Or any of the last twenty threads involving that crowd.

    As I keep pointing out, over and over: the only interesting question their postings raise is why they are here, posting like that.
     
  20. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    Look at it from the side: a good many self-described atheistic posters here can provide solid evidence of the reality of God. A direct route would be to bootstrap from one level of complexity to another, reaching the observation that human reason cannot handle the context of human reason - that all of our thoughts and perceptions and dreams and so forth can derive meaning only from an enveloping context, exist themselves as substrate for patterns incorporating them entire. All the world's a stage.

    But those patterns affect their substrate - and these effects register, impinge on perception. We perceive shadows and echoes of a higher realm, in a sense. And as with all perception, we register them in translation or model - wavelengths become colors or tones, shifting patterns become moving shapes, the shadows of the higher realm become god(s). Such gods would be as real as the color red.

    This kind of approach is just sitting there on the table, on a science forum. But it does not disparage science or scientists, even allows the label "atheistic" if that seems best. It does not suit the agenda, apparently.
     
  21. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    Yes.

    You claimed that the Bible is true because Christianity became popular (message #138). So yes, it is about history and the spread of Christianity - and yes, it is about the validity of he claims of Christianity.

    So the question, again, is: Can you show a direct cause-and-effect relationship between the spread of Christianity and the Bible?
     
  22. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    I think that might misrepresent the earlier exchange.

    Spidergoat had said:

    Which I agree with. In my opinion, the Bible (and other "scriptures") simply don't read as of they are revelations from the Ultimate Source of Reality. They read as if they were the products of their own time and place, of the ancient cultures that generated them. They are hugely ambiguous, and often seemingly self-contradictory. They can be interpreted in many different ways.

    But having expressed that agreement, it needs to be said that it's a stylistic point.

    To which Musika replied:

    In other words, whatever we think the Bible's stylistic deficiencies are, no matter how far we think it deviates from what we would expect a Revelation from the Ultimate Source of Reality to look like (something transcendent, something that exceeds the limitations not only of its time and place, but of the human condition itself), Musika is right in saying that historically, it's been exceedingly successful as a religious text.

    JamesR replied:

    Of course not. It's evidence that the Bible has been a tremendously influential religious text, hence "great" in that particular sense. History shows that it works as a religious scripture, despite its stylistic and other deficiencies.

    "Great" in the cultural-influence sense doesn't necessarily equate to "true" in the ontological sense. So the Bible being a great book still doesn't tell us very much about whether or not God exists.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 6:01 PM
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  23. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    Jan will never commit to anything when asked directly. You should know that by now. Committing to something would mean having to defend it, and Jan prefers to always be on offense, never on defense.

    To be fair, Jan did write this in post #61:

    "I've already told you what I think is good evidence, things like the cosmological, and teleological argument, or most things by William Craig Lane. I don't base my theism on them, but they are basically good in my opinion."

    The second sentence might strike some people as an evasion, but I'm less sure.

    Let's change 'knowledge of God's existence' to 'knowledge of good and evil'. Most of our Sciforums atheists aren't amoral, they believe very strongly that they can discern evil and differentiate it from good. In fact many of them seem to my eye to be puritanical-style moralists, always casting judgement when the topic is social-issue politics or something like that.

    The question here is what justifies moral judgements. Some people might be adherents of various metaethical theories such as utilitarianism, but I suspect that most of them would say, as Jan said, that their moral judgment that 'X is wrong' isn't really the result of utilitarian calculation. It's going to be more intuitive than that. The metaethical justification for the intuition only appears after the judgment has been made. (And then continually adjusted until its result conforms with the original intuition, reducing mush of ethics to little more than sophistry.)

    So if moral intuition is not only admissible, but somehow required in order for somebody to be considered something more than a psychopath, then why isn't religious intuition being given the same courtesy?

    Similar points could be made about mathematics and logic I think. It's easy to talk grandly about mathematical proofs, but at the end of the day whatever logical necessity a proof expresses still has to be intuited.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 5:57 PM

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