Evidence that God is real

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

  1. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

    More than like - love it

    Solves the problem (is it a problem??) ending a thread on a positive note

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  3. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    So has this thread just turned in to stating those whose arguments we think suffice?
    Jan raised "William Craig" so I will counter with "Sean Carroll".
    Beat that argument, Jan!

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    Seriously, Jan, why are you still here? You've trolled this thread. You're doing your best to nose-dive it into the ground. You're like the schoolboy having to write an essay on King Charles I of England and start with: "I'm not going to talk about Charles I but instead talk about salmon fishing in the tropics" and then wonder why you get zero marks.
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  5. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    Why would you pray to God for your team to win?

    What does it matter if you team wins or loses?

    Why would you want to win by any means necessary?

    Do you have your conscious awareness generator?

    You are looking at this from a “there is no God” perspective. You seem to think that this character, God, is like some kind of genie that allows wishes to those that believe in him.

    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
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  7. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    Actually that is good. It means I can go look up Sean Carroll, and decide if what he believes is worth discussing or not, in the context of this thread. Saves a lot of time.

    Why are you still here?
    Answer that and it may give you some idea?

    Not at all. I’ve done what has been asked.
    That you don’t like how I’ve done it, is irrelevant.

    We were asked to put forward what we think is evidence that God is real. I put forward Bill Craig. His arguments are not only well documented over the net, but isolated from his writings. This means you don’t have to sift through tons of literature to finally get to his arguments. I also said any one of them can apply.

  8. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    I’ve a better idea.
    Why not just google WLC evidence for God.

    There’s no need for name-calling.

    I wasn’t aware “science types” had a specific worldview.
    Would you regard yourself as a “science type”, and do share your world view with all other “science types “?

  9. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

    Direct in using words that underly their beliefs about the relationship God has with the world, etc?

    Your ideas about these words are somewhat erroneous, but at least you are correct in understanding that the terms underly a specific relationship with things of this world, etc.
    So given that atheists tend to display a wholesale bias in using the word "supernatural", what specific advantage do you think they could also secure in lumping God in to a category that has lots of other ideas that have nothing to do with theism?

    There are theistic traditions that entertain the notion of ghosts and God. Your speculations about how this automatically grant them a similar or identical relationship with the world because they "appear similar" in your mind are simply speculations (probably fueled more by the influence of hollywood than any legitimate cultural or philosophical reference).

    You don't see people who subscribe to empirical world views also being completely susceptible to this also?
    If the length and breadth of science is about systematically analyzing observations of the physical world, that is fine. If you want to take that a step further and say this also now spells the length and breadth of reality, you cannot do that without blurring the line.

    But you are the one introducing this (false) dichotomy.
    Having recourse to special words that help you demarcate the stuff you believe is real from the stuff you believe is not real is certainly helpful .... but only insofar as assisting your world view. Establishing your world view as superior or philosophically cogent is a far more arduous task than merely saying, "Look, I just called that supernatural!"

    So the notion of life being reducible to an arrangement of chemicals is supernatural?
    After all, its certainly a claim that blurs the distinction between what has and hasn't been (empirically) verified.
    Or do you feel its an unnecessary term because the "ethereal" existence of life is but part of the same integral existence of rocks and leaves?

    How do you figure it as vague since you have just mentioned earlier how "supernatural" encompasses a category of things that has nothing to do with God, or the role God is alluded (IYHO) to have within this world?

    Because it has automatic connotations of fantasy and, as you mentioned, brings it in to a category that involves many things that bear no relationship to theism.
    As far as debate goes, it is a form approaching ad hom/straw manning. Bringing a target within the confines of a category with retrograde credibility makes the task of taking it down that much easier.
    I'm pretty sure you would take reserve to reductionist views of life as being labelled "supernatural", even though it can be presented in such a manner to tick all the aforementioned boxes you have given.
    Also, as an interesting point of history, when Newton first brought forth his ideas of gravity, he faced charges of masquerading as a fraudster from the scientific community since he was talking of intangible forces. He even described gravity as supernatural. His idea of thinking is that there is no way to empirically explain or investigate what causes a universal constant to manifest its universal qualities.
    This is the point where one has to make the decision whether or not to "blur the line", as you stated earlier.
    Does science claim that viewing the observable universe as a closed system of entirely natural phenomena exhausts reality?
    Or is that the claim of atheists?
    No doubt you will choose this moment to inject the stock standard response of atheists having no claims to make.
    Answering in that way will not however explain on what basis one could level such a claim about "natural" phenomena and reality. To say the least, science is not demanding such philosophical conclusions. So who else does that leave in the room?
  10. Musika Last in Space Valued Senior Member

    Part 2

    Supernatural has no need to be tied to an "ethereal person" to find usage. It is tied to an understanding of what lies outside the "natural" universe. Since all we have in the way of a natural universe is post-big bang, it stands to reason that anything pre-big bang must have more than a handful of "supernatural" elements. So what do you think? Are you comfortable with the term "supernatural" being used in such discussions. Or do you think it is unsuitable because it introduces a category with strong connotations of retrograde credibility?

    If you paid attention during those "vague hand waving" discussions, you wouldn't be asking this question now.
    Your main stumbling block is that you refuse to accept that epistemology is a multi-branched system, of which empiricism is but one facet. I have provided both eastern and western philosophical systems. When you couldn't grasp that I mentioned Andamon Islanders, bakers, car mechanics, doctors, medieval painters and history etc etc, all with the view of showing how accessing non-empirical evidence is the standard of everyday life and our understanding of the world. You could say epistemological variety is the most common subject I bring to your attention in any of our discussions. Yet here you are, oblivious to its presence even as a subject.

    Do you view your knowledge of history, as given by historians, in the same manner?
    That you just simply "ought to believe it"?

    Because we were discussing evidence within science and then, you suddenly started talking about theories, as if they alone are sufficient to base ideas of reality on. IOW, you started talking about how it is important to have evidence (empirical of course) for all claims of knowledge. When I pushed the subject into scientific realms that are not manageable in terms of evidence, you came forth with theories (theories that have no scope to be currently evidenced). This would seem to transgress your earlier directive about knowledge having a firm connection to (empirical) evidence.

    I chose pre-big bang because it is the easiest example to offer, because science does not even attempt to seriously answer such questions. But there are practically unlimited contenders.

    Empirical observations are limited in both time and space, which spells out the extremely limited field they have access to. How many events in the universe have occurred since the beginning of time and how many do you think we have empirical access to on earth? Or even to get more provincial, how many events have occurred on earth since its creation and how many do you think we have empirical access to?

    That's reasonable.
    What is not reasonable is to dress up empiricism as the means to assess the problem
  11. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Fair comment, however, to pray for a team to win in her terms would be showing great disrespect for the target of her prayers.

    On one occasion, to aid in the understanding, agreement is not necessary, we had the following "circumstantial" event. The first of the very few I witnessed.
    We had just got married, and were settling into our 2 bedroom apartment.
    I had the privilege of having a pet Budgerigar (bird) that had free reign of the house, returning to his cage for night times.
    One evening we noticed him missing yet he could not have left the apartment.
    We looked every where, cupboards, behind furniture etc... and could not find him. ( for about about 30 minutes)
    My overly sentimental wife was totally distressed in the typical South American fashion and got down on her knees in the living room and prayed for help in finding the bird.
    As soon as she had stopped her prayer and stood up we heard a very weak cheeping sound coming from the kitchen.
    Apparently the bird had fallen behind the oven/cooker and because it was too narrow he couldn't move his wings and was trapped there. There is no way we would have found him if he hadn't let out that weak chirping sound.
    My wife immediately fell to her knees and prayed her gratitude as she felt that God had aided us in finding the bird.
    Now of course one could conclude very easily that this is just a case of coincidence and as such I did just that, but my wife was insistent. To her, this is only one of hundreds of similar " coincidences" that have occurred through out her difficult life and she has no doubt what so ever in the power of prayer.
    Why should they be answered would be a better question. Do you think a God would be on someones beck and call when ever that wanted something?
    Do you think that a God should somehow answer every prayer regardless of circumstance?
    Have you never heard the phrase "God works in mysterious ways?"

    Why would a God help us find a pet budgy?
    The power of prayer is not just about God IMO, there are other forms like chanting, repetitive self affirmations etc that can all have sometimes startling effects and outcomes.
    Is it open to science empirically? Nope...unless you take a long and massive population survey that includes data sets that deal with coincidences that are proceeded by desires prayed or simply expressed internally. Of course this is not going to happen because it relies on people being honest and truthful..
    Perhaps researching might be fruitful.
    The Charismatic Movement is the international trend of historically mainstream Christian congregations adopting beliefs and practices similar to Pentecostalism. Fundamental to the movement is the use of spiritual gifts (charismata). Among Protestants, the movement began around 1960.
    If I am not mistaken I believe Trump is a member of such or similar.
    Charismatic persons in this sense, are people who can make use of prayer to influence their destinies and the destinies of others... etc
    ...and I believe Trump is quite gifted in being able to abuse the self determination of others
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
  12. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    But you can do that without this thread, Jan. This thread is to discuss your (as in the responder's) views. Not simply to post a name and leave it to everyone else to guess which aspects you are referring to, which arguments you align yourself with.
    To have sensible discussion. That is something you have shown yourself to be pretty much incapable of, and seemingly actively seek to avoid. So I ask: why are you here?
    So might say the little boy who, when asked what he had for lunch, simply defecates on the floor. "I've done what has been asked, That you don't like how I've done it, is irrelevant".
    So Bill Craig himself is evidence that God is real? How is he evidence? If he is evidence, is anyone else evidence? Are you? Am I? In what way is he, or anyone else, evidence that God is real?
    Oh, so it's not Bill Craig that is evidence that God is real, it is his arguments that are evidence that God is real?
    Which arguments? The ones he has with his colleagues? With his wife? Arguments on which wine region is the best? Whether the Hulk could defeat Thor in an arm wrestle?
    So put one forth for discussion, Jan. Do not just drop a turd on the floor and expect others to sift through it for your answer.
    Or is the little boy really saying he ate shit for lunch?

    Please, Jan, stop defecating in this thread, or in any other thread for that matter.
  13. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    The concept of special does exist, whether the word exists or not. For example, your children are special to you because there is an evolutionary advantage in that feeling. Without the concept of special, we'd be faced with a myriad of random choices every day.
  14. billvon Valued Senior Member

    We did. We discovered that he defends genocide, thinks that gays can't be moral and that evolution is real.

    Are these the evidences for God you are pushing?
    Including the above, apparently.
  15. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Yes, I have and also; "God's will be done", when prayers are not being answered.
    But if God is going to do his will anyway, why bother praying in the first place? Reminding God he is not doing His will? Suggesting that God should do your will?

    As Carlin said; "God made a Divine plan and that plan worked just fine for billions of years. Now you come along and ask God to change his Divine plan. What good is a Divine plan if every Joe with a 2 dollar prayer book can come along and f*ck up your plan"?

    Do you really believe that when something you prayed for happens, it would not have happened if you had not prayed?
  16. pluto2 Banned Valued Senior Member

    If God really existed then this planet will not be such a cruel place.

    Many people are living on the streets and have nothing to eat so if God really existed then human beings would not be so selfish and egoistic and we would actually care for each other.

    This planet is a pretty dangerous and cruel place for many people and humans are very selfish. This is why there is my opinion no such thing as a God.

    Also if there is a God then not so many men/women will be completely ignored by the opposite sex and everyone will have the chance to experience being loved back at least once.

    I want to be able to be loved back by a female at least once in my life but yet it will probably never happen to me.

    The fact stands that many women/men are extremely lonely and isolated and many of them feel completely unloved (or unappreciated).
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    This has nothing to do with evidence for God.
  18. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Why? You could posit "God is cruelty" - then there's plenty of evidence that God exists.

    I suspect you mean there's no evidence for a loving God, but even then that's not really true. If you posit a non-omipotent but loving God, you could use everything good that happens as evidence of God. "That man sacrificed his life to save the baby! Evidence of God." "That tsunami that killed thousands? Well, even God's not all-powerful."
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  19. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    I'll slap you back in the face with a Brit: Richard Swinburne

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Existence-God-Richard-Swinburne/dp/0199271682/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1539802823&sr=1-1&keywords=swinburne richard

    Hah! Take that, atheists!

    Seriously though, Swinburne is perhaps the foremost theistic philosopher of religion out there, along with Alvin Plantinga I guess.

    (Craig is something of a lightweight in my opinion, compared to these guys. I notice that Craig makes use of what looks like Plantinga's modal ontological argument in his Philosophy now article.)

    It's interesting (to me, anyway) that like Craig, Swinburne strongly emphasizes natural theology. So that's where these professionals are directing much of their attention.

    So if this thread is ever going to budge off its posturing, ego battles and incessant moral condemnations, maybe natural theology is where more of the board's attention should go.

    I also think that the problem that I raised in post #687 deserves more attention than its gotten.

    Theists intuit the reality of God. Mathematicians intuit that their proofs are sound. Billvon intuits that Craig's morality is both deficient and evil. So why should the mathematician's logical intuitions, or Billvon's moral intuitions, receive any more credence as to their objective truth than the theists' faith?

    Everybody (even scientists) believes in things that they can't justify to a skeptic's satisfaction.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
    Quantum Quack likes this.
  20. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    But not that this god has will, other than mathematical function.
    I would propose that all those grand qualifications including pain and suffering clearly do not suggest an emotionally motivated form of universal being at all, except in animals.

    And we are left with the mathematical nature of everything we know. What a relief.....
  21. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    No they don't.
    1] Axioms always apply.
    2] Proofs are always rigorously reviewed before being accepted.

    True. Everybody believes stuff. That's a personal thing. Personal beliefs don't need to be defended (if you state them as beliefs).

    But, when scientists want to share their beliefs, they are only too happy too lay their evidence (or absence thereof) on the table and invite anyone else to examine it. In fact, it's an ingrained part of the method.

    Jan wants to have his cake and eat it too. He wants his beliefs treated as if they are more than his personal beliefs, but is unable to defend them.
  22. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    I remember the day I turned away from traditional Christianity. It was the day when the Pastor of my school demanded that we pray in school assembly.
    1/ Why would a know all God require me to pray when he would already know what I was going to pray for? Was my question.
    2/ Why would a God who supposedly cherishes his own freewill and that of those he created seek to force any one to pray to him? Was another.
    It was then I realized that the demand was of and for human need and not God's need and that the Church was essentially a self serving self justifying entity.
    I was about 10 years old at the time.
    However later as thoughts matured and I delved deeper into the nature of what I call reflective psychology I realized as other sophisticated thinkers realize, that all we are witnessing on this Earth is a manifested reflection of our own internal "Crusade","Jihad". That the Church was just as much as part of the "plan" or evolution of the human psych as anything else was.
    That individual philosophical maturity can not be achieved unless the collective matures in a similar fashion. That religious dogma was/is merely an evolutionary stepping stone towards a greater position. A set of rules that were and are needed to facilitate growth towards a more liberated and peaceful position. The over coming of sectarian conflict ( atheism included), corruption, violent tendency etc. are all a part of humanities intellectual and emotional evolution towards a more sustainable position. ( the tolerance of others beliefs and freewill)

    In fact the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) could be seen as one such fundamental step or expressed ideal.
    Especially article 18:
    Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
    Typically when one prays they do so as a supplicant. wishing only to highlight in a God's busy awareness a desire to which a God has totally independence (freewill) to allow or not. Thus you get "By the will of God go I" or other similar.
    Respecting a Gods freewill (self -determination) is a reflection of how you wish to have your own freewill respected and as such a prayer should be totally free of expectation or obligation. Unconditionally stated or thought etc. An open request with no moral judgement. ( a message in a bottle )
    Like asking for a donation to a worthy cause and being happy regardless of success or not.

    unless the plan included "space" for adjustment. Thus allowing a God himself freedom from his own plans.

    I don't pray for reasons stated earlier. So I can not answer that. However God is typically considered the epitome of free will (reflected idealism) and we humble humans are considered as trapped in our conditional compulsions, addictions and emotional co-dependencies. and so prayer is a part of that addiction and compulsion and co-dependency. So the need to pray is also a part of what we think is a divine plan, as is any disappointment or joy associated with the consequences or apparent lack thereof.

    just my take...
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
  23. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    The problem is that except for a few minor deistic belief systems, no major religion answers to that secular humane sentiment.
    In fact it is the opposite. "Thou shalt have no false images before thee" and the church
    determines what is a false image.
    Respecting Natural deterministic Laws is the only requirement for a chance to live in harmony with Nature.

    Prayer without expectation is not prayer.
    Well if God knows what you need before you do, you needn't pray for it, right?

    QQ, I am not saying that introspection and meditation are not subjectively useful. I am saying that regardless of your thoughts Nature (God) exercises its "thoughts" implacably and unemotionally mathematical.
    Respect for Nature is an objective exercise, which only has bearing on happenings in reality. Regardless of prayers and offerings to a God, you disrespect Nature at your peril.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018

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