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Does Atheism Have A Truly Convincing Argument Yet?


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#141 Guest_Tommy_*

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 12:49 PM

And, like legal proceedings, source criticism can wander creatively far from truth in attempts to justify one’s opinion.
That is a fact. But non-source based opinion is a discredit to not only the historian, but history as well


"Truth" is what the historian must aspire to reconstruct although plausibility, consillience and fidelity to source may be more achievable. "Opinion" may yet be informed and well argued.

I would remind you that the Talmud states that He was “going to be stoned”, but it further states that He was hanged instead. Stoning was a Jewish punishment, and hanging a Roman punishment. When the Jewish leadership first brought Jesus before Pilate, he (Pilate) told them to punish Him themselves, but they said they could not (due to Roman dictum a little earlier in history).
That would be incorrect because there is no historical “Yeshu” that fits the Talmud but Jesus from (approximately) 1 AD until 33AD.

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Well, we know Yeshua was a common name and Roman zero tolerance of trouble-makers not unknown nor was being followed by disciples (John the Baptist had them). The Talmud reports that the sorcerer Yeshu did not receive leniancy as he had influence with the royal authority which Judea did not have after 6 AD.

#142 Ron

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 03:56 PM

Which books are those?

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The books added to the Old Testament by the Catholic church to fill the gap between the Old and New Testaments: Tobit, Judith, 1 Maccabees, 2 Maccabees, Wisdom (of Solomon), Sirach, and Baruch. Parts of existing books were also removed including Psalm 151 (from Psalms), parts of the Book of Esther, Susanna (from Daniel as chapter 13), and Bel and the Dragon (from Daniel as chapter 14).

I think I got them all up there.

#143 jason78

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 06:27 PM

The books added to the Old Testament by the Catholic church to fill the gap between the Old and New Testaments: Tobit, Judith, 1 Maccabees, 2 Maccabees, Wisdom (of Solomon), Sirach, and Baruch. Parts of existing books were also removed including Psalm 151 (from Psalms), parts of the Book of Esther, Susanna (from Daniel as chapter 13), and Bel and the Dragon (from Daniel as chapter 14).

I think I got them all up there.

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So which bible do the Catholics use, and which one does everyone else use?

#144 Ron

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 08:19 PM

So which bible do the Catholics use,

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The Catholic Bible.

and which one does everyone else use?

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The Bible containing only the Old Testament and the New Testament.

#145 Ron

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 11:46 AM

Why exactly, does a disbelief in god require any more of a convincing argument then a disbelief in santa claus or the easter bunny?

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Three problems with your rationale here (or lack thereof):

1- The easter bunny never claimed to be “real”, Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnipresent.

2- Santa Clause was a real person (St. Nicholas), therefore that argument is not analogous. And is therefore a non sequitur (it does not follow your line of reasoning).

3- A disbelief, is a “belief” in the opposite. Therefore, it is still a “belief”. In order to have a belief, one must have a convincing argument to sustain said belief, or admit to be delusional, or admit denial.

#146 Ron

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 11:51 AM

Very wrong.  Agnosticism is a statement concerning knowledge while atheism is a statement concerning belief.  Therefore, it is quite possible, and in fact common, for an atheist to be an "agnostic atheist" and a theist to be an "agnostic theist".

Agnosticism in not a third choice between atheism and theism.  I would imagine that most atheists on this board are "agnostic atheists" meaning that they are without belief in gods but they do not claim ultimate knowledge about reality; they most know before they believe.  In other words, a lack of belief in gods is not the same as believing that there are no gods.

This is the brand of atheism that I would label myself as.  If you don't want to call it atheism...then we can call it nonreligious but in essence you are playing semantics and when it comes down to it you are just defining a label in a convenient manner for you to deconstruct (strawman).

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No... Actually, Agnosticism as defined, comes from two Greek words (a, “no”; gnosis, “knowledge”). The term agnosticism was coined by T. H. Huxley, and it literally means “no-knowledge,” the opposite of a Gnostic. Thus, an agnostic is someone who claims not to know (a negative proposition). As applied to knowledge of God, there are two basic kinds of agnostics, those who claim that the existence and nature of God are not known, and those who hold God to be unknowable.

The weak form of agnosticism simply holds that God is unknown. This of course leaves the door open that one may know God and indeed that some possibly do know God. As such, this agnosticism does not bump up against Christian theism. The stronger form of agnosticism is mutually exclusive with Christianity. It claims that God is unknowable, that God cannot be known.

Now another distinction must be made then, and that is this: There is unlimited and limited agnosticism. The former claims that God and all reality is completely unknowable. The latter claims only that God is partially unknowable because of the limitations of human finitude and sinfulness.

This leaves three basic alternatives with respect to knowledge about God with regard to the agnostic:
1. We can know nothing about God; he is unknowable.
2. We can know everything about God; he can be exhaustively known.
3. We can know something, but not everything; God is partially knowable.

The first position is agnosticism; the second, dogmatism, and the last, realism. The dogmatic position is untenable. One would have to be infinite in order to know an infinite being exhaustively. Few if any informed theists have seriously held this kind of dogmatism.

However, it can be argued as though partial agnosticism is also wrong. The form this argument takes is that agnosticism is wrong simply because one cannot know something is unknowable about reality without having knowledge about that something. But this is faulty reasoning. There is no contradiction in saying, “I know enough about reality to affirm that there are some things about reality that I cannot know.” For example, we can know enough about observation and reporting techniques to say that it is impossible for us to know the exact population of the world at a given instant (this is unknowability in practice). Likewise, one may know enough about the nature of finitude to say that it is impossible for finite beings to know exhaustively an infinite being. Thus, one holds a controversy only against the complete agnostic who rules out in theory and practice all knowledge of an infinite God.
Complete agnosticism reduces itself to the self-destructing (and self refuting) assertion that “one knows enough about reality to affirm that nothing can be known about reality”. This statement is self-falsifying. One who knows something about reality cannot affirm in the same breath that all of reality is unknowable. And one who knows nothing whatsoever about reality has no basis for making a statement about reality. It will not suffice to say that knowledge of reality can only be purely and completely negative, that is, knowledge can only say what reality is not. For every negative presupposes a positive; one cannot meaningfully affirm that something is not and be totally devoid of a knowledge of the “something.” It follows that total agnosticism is self-defeating. It assumes knowledge of reality in order to deny all knowledge of reality!


The understanding that there are two kinds of agnosticism brings us to the following conclusions: limited agnosticism’s acknowledgment of finite knowledge for the unlimited (or infinite) is tenable and yet, if they willingly remain static, and they do so to keep from said knowledge (And they do so on faith alone). Unlimited agnosticism, however, is self-destructive from the onset; it implies knowledge about reality in order to deny the possibility of any knowledge of reality. Unless it is impossible to know the real, it is unnecessary to disclaim the possibility of all cognitive knowledge of it or to dissuade men from making any judgments about it.

Unlimited agnosticism is a form of dogmatism. In completely disclaiming the possibility of all knowledge of the real, it stands at the opposite pole from the position that claims all knowledge about reality. Either extreme is dogmatic. Both are must positions regarding knowledge as opposed to the position that we can or do know something about reality. And there is simply no process short of omniscience by which one can make such sweeping and categorical statements.

Agnosticism is negative dogmatism, and every negative presupposes a positive. Hence, total agnosticism is not only self-defeating; it is self-deifying. Only an omniscient mind could be totally agnostic, and finite men confessedly do not possess omniscience. Hence, the door remains open for some knowledge of reality. Reality is not unknowable. Therefor Agnosticism defended is a religion, and there is really no such thing as Non-religion, just negative propositions (that still require evidences) promulgated.

#147 Ron

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 12:07 PM

Only contemporaries of Jesus could have known if it were a lie. 

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Absolutely, and if it were a lie, they willingly died horrendous and torturous deaths for what they knew to be lies. Yeah, I know, it doesn’t any sense does it. And yet here you are, thousands of years later attempting to call them all liars.


The twelve are not mentioned by Paul and only the deaths of Judas (suicide) and James (martyrdom) are mentioned in the NT. 

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Once again, incorrect, and oh so wrong. Paul named, by name, many of the apostles, and in much of his writings. Another untruth and misleading misconception exposed.


Catholic tradition holds that all the others bar John were also martyred but there is no contemporary independent corroroboration for any of this.

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Actually, contemporaries of John, Paul, Peter and others, corroborated what they witnessed, what the apostles wrote, and some of the deaths of first century martyrs (including some apostles). And, independent corroboration isn’t necessary. It’s nice sometimes, but it in no way detracts from unimpeachable witnesses.

The issue of "why would a martyr die for a lie?" was probably a drive in the spread of the early church.

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Attempt to make sense out of what you just uttered. Why would someone willingly die horrendous and torturous deaths for what they knew to be lies. It makes no logical or rational sense, and yet you are attempting to submit it as such.

If they know it's a lie they probably wouldn't be a martyr.  Belief in the truth of an afterlife fortifies martyrs to this day.

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Belief in eye witnessed truths can fortify many things. But being martyred for something you know to be a hoax is the silliest of arguments.

#148 Ron

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 12:12 PM

So let me guess this straight...

believing in god is a religion, but NOT believing in god is also a religion?

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Atheism
(from Greek: a + theos "not god") refers in its broadest sense to a denial of theism (the belief in the existence of a single deity or deities). Atheism has many shades and types. Some atheists strongly deny the existence of God (or any form of deity) and attack theistic claims.


Yet certainty as to the non-existence of God is as much a belief as is religion and rests on equally unprovable claims.

Just as religious believers range from the ecumenical to the narrow-minded, atheists range from those for whom it is a matter of personal philosophy to those who are militantly hostile to religion.

Atheism often buttresses its case on science, yet many modern scientists, far from being atheists, have argued that science is not incompatible with theism.

Some traditional religious belief systems are said to be "atheist" or "non-theist," but this can be misleading. While Jainism technically can be described as philosophically materialist (and even this is subtle vis-à-vis the divine), the claim about Buddhism being atheistic is more difficult to make. Metaphysical questions put to the Buddha about whether or not God exists received from him one of his famous "silences." It is inaccurate to deduce from this that the Buddha denied the existence of God. His silence had far more to do with the distracting nature of speculation and dogma than it had to do with the existence or non-existence of God.

Many people living in the West have the impression that atheism is on the rise around the world, and that the belief in God is being replaced with a more secular-oriented worldview. However, this view is not confirmed. Studies have consistently shown that contrary to popular assumptions, religious membership is actually increasing globally.

http://www.newworlde...g/entry/Atheism

#149 Ron

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Posted 19 March 2011 - 07:06 AM

"Truth" is what the historian must aspire to reconstruct although plausibility, consillience and fidelity to source may be more achievable.  "Opinion" may yet be informed and well argued.

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Truth defined, is what we know which corresponds with reality. The New Testament eyewitnesses told what they observed. Or, more succinctly put; that which corresponded to reality. Today’s post-modernist critics posit unsubstantiated speculation, and nothing more, and the as of yet unimpeachable eyewitnesses to historical events can be considered innocent of malfeasance until proven guilty of such. Also, there is absolutely no contemporaneous evidence to disprove their writings and testimony (hence “Testament”).

So, until you can provide contrary contemporaneous evidences, you are merely speculating (a faith based proposition). And to do so, you must empirically refute the:
1- The Integrity of those New Testament Witnesses 2- The mental stability of the New Testament Eyewitnesses and Writers 3- The accuracy of said New Testament eyewitnesses (etcetera... etcetera...)

And, unfortunately for your position, the historical, archaeological and contemporaneous secular testimony supports the accuracy of the New Testament, and that of the disciples of Jesus of Nazareth.

The question is; are you somehow prepared to produce any actual evidence to back up your claims. Or are you simply going to continue to engender more “speculation”, “innuendo” and “a priory” tautological presupposition…


Well, we know Yeshua was a common name and Roman zero tolerance of trouble-makers not unknown nor was being followed by disciples (John the Baptist had them).

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Yes, but can you provide evidence for more than one who fits the description of the Jesus written about in the Talmud?


The Talmud reports that the sorcerer Yeshu did not receive leniancy as he had influence with the royal authority which Judea did not have after 6 AD.

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Links please.




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