They were written as historical documents and as such we can view them as we do any other historical documents.
Joseph Smith's accounts of finding the golden tablets and having them translated by an angel are also written as history. That doesn't mean that they happened.
Is it rational to believe that an incredibly complex cell could come into existence from a random collection of particles? Is it really rational to believe that intelligence could also emerge from this same random collection of particles?
Is it rational to believe that the Earth orbits the Sun, and not the other way around even though we do not feel the Earth move and can see the Sun moving?
Is it rational to believe that light can be a particle or a wave, but never both at the same time?
Is it rational to believe that fire is caused by an invisible gas?
The evidence has led us to many conclusions that seemed irrational at the outset. The importance is that we are following the evidence and not what we want to be true.
You have discounted all the work done by centuries of scientific minds who have worked hard at trying to understand how this all works. It is your view that the idea that God, god or gods exist is imaginary. Maybe you’re right but most of the world’s population disagree with you.
They can disagree all they want. What is important is that theists have failed to demonstrate that they are right. What we keep seeing is a set of beliefs that people want to be true, but can never demonstrate that they are true.
The Theory of Evolution is as near as I can tell a well evidenced theory as to the process that led to life today. It is not evidence of why we exist. It would be like looking at a car assembly line and claiming that the assembly line just came into existence on its own and is solely responsible for the existence of cars.
But we actually have evidence for people building car factories. That's the difference.
The atheist POV is not a positive claim, so it is quite different. Theists are making the positive claim, and have yet to support that claim with positive evidence. The atheist POV is simply pointing that out.
The fact still remains that evolution ticks along in much the same way that an assembly line does, and it is my unprovable belief that just as the assembly line required intelligence in order for it to produce cars that it is analogous to believe that intelligence was required for evolution.
I think this illustrates the differences in our outlook. For the theist, there needs to be a purpose behind nature. Us humans need to be the ultimate expression of what nature was meant to do. This is a faith based belief, one that has not been supported by evidence and is believed to be true because it is comforting.
Atheism, on the other hand, views humans as one of millions of examples of what nature produces. We are no more the purpose of the universe than a rock on Mars. The universe is indifferent to our existence. What purpose we do find is purpose that we invent.
This is why atheists see God as being made by humans, IMHO.
This is a lie. Bible believers have tons of evidence, though "theists" may not.
Why do theists always fail to bring this evidence to the forefront in threads that are asking for it?
What happened when I became a believer? I became the target of ridicule and slander such as I encounter at EvC.
And yet you keep coming back. Why? It justifies your beliefs. In your mind, the more people attack you the more correct you are. I have seen this same thought process in many, many christians. They actually seek out persecution, both imaginary and real.
I didn't believe because I "needed a purpose," I believed because I found the evidence convincing, I believed because I believed it to be TRUE.
Another claim of having evidence without any presented. This is why atheists are utterly unconvinced.
I was thinking of prophecies of real historical events in real historical time, something with at least the specificity of the biblical Messiah prophecies, not their weird unworldly history of Hinduism or the vagueness of the others. And miracles on the order of those in the Bible, not that little milik-drinking statue nonsense.
Jesus didn't fulfill the Messianic prophecies, unless you are leaving out some history where Jesus led Israel and conquered all of its enemies. Christianity is on the same level as those other religions.
As to miracles, I can find just as many in other religions:
"One story tells how 500 pieces of firewood split at the Buddha's command. In another, a mad elephant charged wildly down a street forcing everyone to flee. Only the Buddha remained, quietly waiting. The elephant, overcome by the Buddha’s radiant kindness, knelt before him, and the Buddha patted his leathery trunk." http://www.pbs.org/thebuddha/miracles/
Which brings up another question. Do We Need God? Thus we basically have two questions.
I think it could be argued that some people need to believe in God in order to find meaning in their life. However, reality isn't forced to make something real simply because humans need to believe in it.
Or we became aware of God. How would we tell the difference?
If a made up deity is indistinguishable from the deity you believe in, then the conclusion should be obvious.
Imagine that you one day became aware of a certain car. By definition, it eased your anxiety, confirmed your desire, and was capable of getting you to where you wanted to go. Without seeing a picture of it and without another description of it, could you say you made it up (imagined it) or could it be possible that you simply became aware of it?
Imagine if your neighbor got a car, and he invites you over to take a look. Upon looking in the garage you don't see a car. Your neighbor tells you that the car is invisible. You then ask if you can throw some flour on top of the car to show that it exists. Your neighbor explains that all matter passes through the car. You come up with test after test after test to possibly show that the car exists, but each time you neighbor tells you that the results of that test will be indistinguishable from that car not existing.
At what point do you just stop and conclude that your neighbor is making it up?
I would ask several questions. • Why did you want to tell me about this car that I cannot perceive?
• Can I watch you drive the car?
• How often do you use this car?
• How did you come to acquire this car?
1. I was told to tell you about the car by a holy book. 2. You can only drive the car in the afterlife where no one can see you but other people in the afterlife. 3. See above. 4. An invisible car salesman sold me the car.
It depends howq well I know my neighbor and whether or not he has been illogical previously. I also dont need proof of the car as long as such a car would also be proven useful to me and whether I too could acquire such a car.
Re: Jonathan Sarfati, of AIG, accepts General Relitivity (and AIG itself).
It seems to me that you simply think that any unevidenced belief is nonsense.
What's the difference between nonsense and an unevidenced belief?
Percy claims no belief, but allows that some do believe and have every right to claim whatever they want as miraculous. Perhaps he is trying to understand why believers think the way they do.
You, on the other hand, wave away any belief as nonsense precisely because it is unevidenced and you wont allow the term miracle to be part of your vocabulary. You would wait your whole life for evidence without believing in anything.
I also allow for other people to believe in nonsense and declare whatever they want as miraculous no matter how nonsensical it is. I don't see why allowing people to believe in nonsense somehow comes with the requirement that I have to believe in the same nonsense. Can you explain?
I'm more interested in whether the BBT is the prevailing theory among Cosmologists or whether any competing theories have arisen.
From my understanding, the BBT is the prevailing theory for explain a whole host of observations as it relates to the last 13.7 billion year history of our universe. However, the BBT isn't a theory that tries to explain the origin of our universe, only how it has changed over those 13.7 billion years.
Science is honest enough to admit what it does not know and explain what it does know.
Science is also a methodological approach to gaining knowledge and not an ontological one. It isn't as concerned with conclusion as it is with how you reach those conclusions.
In other words, content is more pertinent than source. Right?
I wouldn't phrase it that way at all. Content doesn't matter at all. Source is everything. Where and how you got your answer is way more important than the answer itself. It's similar to a teacher not giving credit for a math test answer because the student didn't show their work.
In physics at least, people would view the answer as more important, just that the where and how must be sound. The answer is people's main motivation.
However, a specific answer is not their motivation. Scientists weren't trying to produce 2.998E8 m/s for the speed of light. Scientists don't care what the number actually is as long as it is the product of good methodology and science. If someone 200 years ago had just blurted out 2.998E8 m/s for the speed of light they would have been ignored, and no one would have cared about that number. Just having a number is worthless in science. Having an accurate and reliable methodology is everything.
It's an abusive attitude, aimed against an ancient tradition that used to be treated with respect even by Krazy atheists. No longer.
Respect is earned, not simply given because something has existed for a certain amount of time. Segregation was a tradition in the South, but that didn't make it worth respecting. "We've always done it this way" is not a valid argument for something being respectable or true.