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Author Topic:   Why Atheists don't believe
riVeRraT
Member (Idle past 25 days)
Posts: 5746
From: NY USA
Joined: 05-09-2004


Message 286 of 310 (314399)
05-22-2006 3:50 PM


summary?
RickJB writes:
The analogy doesn't hold, CK. Even if you don't know where your girlfriend is, you CAN find out empirically. You can follow her and see where she goes. You can even take someone with you to confirm what you see. There's your evidence.

When it comes to the existence of God, however, no such option is open to you.

You are equating a lack of evidence with the ability to get it. When we say "lack of evidence" we mean that there is NO means of empirical confirmation.

Well put. I agree. That's the difference.

CK writes:

The point is - I could go and get evidence but I don't - I take it on faith. All of us take multiple things on faith every day without requiring "evidence" from the people we interact with.

ALmost another contradictory statement. You don't get evidence...why?
Still, there is no denying that the evidence can be easily optained, and IS part of the equation.

Nosy writes:

Thinking that the 2 statements are contradictory reflects a non-black and white approach. They are not contradictory at all. He may take one thing totally on trust (we should define terms more carefully) based on how important it is or the context or the source person. He may be utterly sceptical of something else based on the same things. He may also take something as pretty sure but do a bit of checking for other things.

He is saying very clearly with those statements that he doesn't believe many, many things 100% but believes them well enough to act as it they are 100%.

This is about the only confusing thing I ever read from you.

I think what you are trying to say is that there are different levels of subject matter in life, and some require authentication, and some don't, they can be taken on faith.

But that is not entirely true, as the evidence can be had if needed, so it is not on faith alone.

If you believe something, you either believe it, or you don't. Most of the time, we aren't going to analize things to that depth, because it isn't required for day to day living.

Your right about trust.

schraf writes

But we could check for the evidence that he needs them.

I agree.

Invictus writes:

Like CK has said, though, it is really a case-by-case sort of thing. You can't group all the events in someone's life into one big pot as if they are all the same and hold an equal amount of importance.

I agree on the case by case. I think I should have limited it to things that really matter, and better defined the question.

Why can you say that? What is this "authority" you are talking about? And what do you mean by "stuff"? In this case, I am very much unwilling to believe you based on just what you've said. I want some evidence in support.

Trék

The authority comes from them, not me. Just read the responses, and draw your own conclusion.

But your right about the word "stuff." It is a blurry definition.


jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 287 of 310 (314406)
05-22-2006 4:37 PM


Why should an atheist believe?
I can't think of a single reason for an atheist to believe in a God. There isn't any realy good verifiable evidence there is one, or any strong reason to suppose there might be a God. Most atheists I've had dealings with seem to be pretty reasonable, rational individual, and if they were presented with overwhelming evidence that GOD existed, then would likely accept that fact. But until presented with such evidence, why should they believe?


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
Replies to this message:
 Message 288 by riVeRraT, posted 05-22-2006 4:53 PM jar has responded

riVeRraT
Member (Idle past 25 days)
Posts: 5746
From: NY USA
Joined: 05-09-2004


Message 288 of 310 (314409)
05-22-2006 4:53 PM
Reply to: Message 287 by jar
05-22-2006 4:37 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
What does all that have to do with the price of gas?

We are not trying to convince atheists that there is a God in this thread.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 287 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 4:37 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 289 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 4:58 PM riVeRraT has not yet responded

jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 289 of 310 (314412)
05-22-2006 4:58 PM
Reply to: Message 288 by riVeRraT
05-22-2006 4:53 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
I think it is very important to this thread. The topic is " Why Atheists don't believe". If there is absolutely no reason for atheists to believe, then the question is moot.

Why shouold anyone believe?

The key to me seems to be that there are some who look for answers to questions while others question answers. The former are by definition limited, while the later are by definition unlimited.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 288 by riVeRraT, posted 05-22-2006 4:53 PM riVeRraT has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 291 by robinrohan, posted 05-22-2006 5:25 PM jar has responded

fefaith
Inactive Junior Member


Message 290 of 310 (314416)
05-22-2006 5:07 PM
Reply to: Message 285 by Jon
05-22-2006 3:42 PM


They are real chemical reactions. Synapses occurs everytime the brain is stimulated. Stimulation from real circumstances (or visible ones) or stimulation from not so visible circumstances(thoughts or brainwaves from another source-like when a baby is hungry and mamas 3 hours away but her breasts start to leak, or when you sense that someone is staring at you and sure enough, you turnaround and catch the stare). Faith derives thoughts, which in turn produces brainwaves, which influence behaviour. It is the same with doubts. There is no positive or negative, just reactions. Now you might think is the right time to introduce intelligence. Thats a different avenue. I read some posts on IQ. It is all subjective. Results are what ranks these reactions. If the resulting reaction of being an atheist brings forth satisfaction, so be it. If faith works, so be it. The pleasures one takes from exercising one or another is what will drive the force for continuation or patterns of behaviour. Some might even choose to jump from one state to another and viceversa, because he or dhe feels pleasure doing so. It is a matter of choice.

Choosing to react to the news of the farm is also a matter of how your brain has learned to release the chemicals necessary to go one way or another, or even being innert. Knowing GOD , not Knowing GOD, Beleiving or not is relevant to what satisfaction you expect to acheive. You can use observation to make predispose a reaction. Lets say you see someone stick his hand in a fire, and he screams and you see his hand's skin get red and charcoaled. How do you conclude this is good or bad. The scream, the redness, the change of color? It all relates to the stimuli you have experienced befor. Maybe the scream reminds your brain of something that did not produce satisfaction in you and caused you te react the same (with a scream). Maybe you observed your skin get red when you where bitten by a insect and you recognize this is not something you wish to experience. It is the same with beleifs. You might choose to accept others experience as something that might save you the trouble of discerning among your own experience. Is this stupid. In no way. I would not stick my hand in the fire to see if it is true that it burns. I would jump off a cliff to see if gravity is as they say it is.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 285 by Jon, posted 05-22-2006 3:42 PM Jon has responded

Replies to this message:
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 291 of 310 (314421)
05-22-2006 5:25 PM
Reply to: Message 289 by jar
05-22-2006 4:58 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
Why shouold anyone believe?

I don't know. Why do you?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 289 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 4:58 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 292 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 5:29 PM robinrohan has responded

jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 292 of 310 (314422)
05-22-2006 5:29 PM
Reply to: Message 291 by robinrohan
05-22-2006 5:25 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
Off topic for this thread robin, but take it to the proper thread and I'll be glad to discuss it with you.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 291 by robinrohan, posted 05-22-2006 5:25 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 293 by robinrohan, posted 05-22-2006 5:33 PM jar has responded

robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 293 of 310 (314425)
05-22-2006 5:33 PM
Reply to: Message 292 by jar
05-22-2006 5:29 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
The key to me seems to be that there are some who look for answers to questions while others question answers

This sounds like you're saying it's matter of individual temperament. Some people are born to be believers while others are born skeptics. There might be something to that.

Edited by robinrohan, : typo.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 292 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 5:29 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 294 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 5:40 PM robinrohan has responded

jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 294 of 310 (314426)
05-22-2006 5:40 PM
Reply to: Message 293 by robinrohan
05-22-2006 5:33 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
I'm not sure it's a matter of birth or innate traits. I believe that people can be taught to question, but it is not easy work and it does require tools that many people don't have. But a believer that does not question is as much at a dead end as someone who searchs for answers instead of questions.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
 Message 295 by robinrohan, posted 05-22-2006 5:53 PM jar has responded
 Message 298 by iano, posted 05-22-2006 6:11 PM jar has responded

robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 295 of 310 (314433)
05-22-2006 5:53 PM
Reply to: Message 294 by jar
05-22-2006 5:40 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
I believe that people can be taught to question, but it is not easy work and it does require tools that many people don't have.

Couldn't we turn this around and say, "many people can be taught to believe, but it is not easy work and it does require tools that many people don't have"?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 294 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 5:40 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 296 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 5:57 PM robinrohan has responded

jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 296 of 310 (314434)
05-22-2006 5:57 PM
Reply to: Message 295 by robinrohan
05-22-2006 5:53 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
You can do anything you want.

What are the tools needed to turn someone into a believer?


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 295 by robinrohan, posted 05-22-2006 5:53 PM robinrohan has responded

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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 297 of 310 (314436)
05-22-2006 6:00 PM
Reply to: Message 296 by jar
05-22-2006 5:57 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
What are the tools needed to turn someone into a believer?

I don't know. I'm not a believer. Your statement suggested that it was easier to be a believer than an atheist. I would think it would be equally hard or easy in either case.

Edited by robinrohan, : added "in either case."


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Replies to this message:
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iano
Member (Idle past 46 days)
Posts: 6165
From: Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Joined: 07-27-2005


Message 298 of 310 (314440)
05-22-2006 6:11 PM
Reply to: Message 294 by jar
05-22-2006 5:40 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
But a believer that does not question is as much at a dead end as someone who searchs for answers instead of questions.

But if a believer finds an answer to a particular question should he persist in looking for an answer to that question?

Whats wrong with arriving at an end (your use of the word 'dead' has negative connotations - 'end' seems sufficient, unless there is good reason to suppose arriving at an end is a 'bad' thing)?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 294 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 5:40 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 301 by jar, posted 05-22-2006 6:14 PM iano has responded

Jon
Inactive Member


Message 299 of 310 (314441)
05-22-2006 6:13 PM
Reply to: Message 290 by fefaith
05-22-2006 5:07 PM


They are real chemical reactions. Synapses occurs everytime the brain is stimulated.

Yes, I agree with you there. They are real chemical reactions. But faith and doubt aren't real things. The preception of faigh and doubt are themselves chemical reactions: the are not the source of the reaction. This is my opinion.

(thoughts or brainwaves from another source-like when a baby is hungry and mamas 3 hours away but her breasts start to leak

Are you saying that a baby sends brain signals to his distant mother and it is those signals that cause her to lactate? I'm no expert on this, but there was a thread about it. I do believe it has to do with timing though.

or when you sense that someone is staring at you and sure enough, you turnaround and catch the stare)

Many times when I sense people staring at me, and I turn around, there is no one there. However, I couldn't blame someone if they did stare... who could resist :cool: ?

If the resulting reaction of being an atheist brings forth satisfaction, so be it. If faith works, so be it.

Perhaps that's what it is. Perhaps it is that some people are simply content building their lives on ideals that have no evidence backing whatsoever.

Choosing to react to the news of the farm is also a matter of how your brain has learned to release the chemicals necessary to go one way or another, or even being innert...

...Is this stupid. In no way. I would not stick my hand in the fire to see if it is true that it burns. I would jump off a cliff to see if gravity is as they say it is.

I think we all know from being children that we learn puting our hand on the stove is a bad thing because we do it. Being humans, we are also able to recognize when other humans are experiencing discomfort, and are generally going to avoid those activities we see causing said discomfort.

Trék


This message is a reply to:
 Message 290 by fefaith, posted 05-22-2006 5:07 PM fefaith has not yet responded

nator
Member (Idle past 275 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 300 of 310 (314442)
05-22-2006 6:14 PM
Reply to: Message 297 by robinrohan
05-22-2006 6:00 PM


Re: Why should an atheist believe?
quote:
Your statement suggested that it was easier to be a believer than an atheist. I would think it would be equally hard or easy in either case.

Considering that the vast majority of the world's population of humans believes in some sort of divine entity or god, I would be inclined to think that believing comes quite easily to us.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 297 by robinrohan, posted 05-22-2006 6:00 PM robinrohan has responded

Replies to this message:
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