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Author Topic:   Mythology and Belief of Anti-Theism
ScientificBob
Member (Idle past 2491 days)
Posts: 48
From: Antwerp, Belgium
Joined: 03-29-2011


Message 91 of 165 (616771)
05-24-2011 11:18 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by anglagard
05-22-2011 11:33 PM


Re: The Unreasonable Reasoning of the Anti-Religious
anglagard writes:

The deal is:

1. Does God exist

2. Does God not exist

I say indeterminate, deal with it as an adult as the good dr would do or deal with it like some ignorant HS jock as crashfrog would do.

Do you have any understanding about the difference between "positive claims" and "negative claims" and what that means in context of the burden of proof?

Have you ever heared the brilliant sentence
"what is asserted without evidence can be dissmissed without evidence"?

Let's draw an analogy...
You are driving on the high way at high speed. Suddenly, I claim that there is an invisible rock in the middle of the road. I have no evidence to offer, you "just have to believe me". I'm being very serious about it, because I genuinly fear for your life.
You, off course, see nothing at all on the road. You ask me how I know and I say "I can feel it" or "deity/angel/spirit X told me".

Will you slam your breaks? Honestly...

Edited by ScientificBob, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by anglagard, posted 05-22-2011 11:33 PM anglagard has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 132 by anglagard, posted 05-31-2011 2:21 AM ScientificBob has responded

    
Modulous
Member (Idle past 332 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 92 of 165 (616772)
05-24-2011 11:19 AM
Reply to: Message 86 by crashfrog
05-24-2011 11:01 AM


Re: The Santa Gap
Right, but what's the evidence that the Romans ever referred to Jesus as "King of the Jews"?

It's in all four Gospels.

What followers of Jesus?

The ones that followed him.

What sources?

The four Gospels.

No, I'm imagining evidence. You know, some kind of physical or textual record that would only exist of Jesus was an actual historical person.

There is no evidence that necessarily demonstrates Jesus' existence. And I didn't claim as such. So this kind of thing is nothing to do with any claims I made and your request I provide that kind of evidence is at odds with the claim I actually made. I said there was some evidence that weakly supports the notion of a real apocolyptic jew that was executed which we call 'the historical jesus'.

You seem to be under the impression that it counts as "corroboration" of Alice's story if we ask Bob, Charlie, and David and they tell the same story - never mind the fact that they're just repeating what they heard from Alice.

No. I appreciate that the later gospels took information from the earlier ones, and probably from sources that have not survived.

I'm asking for evidence for the historicity of Jesus. You keep telling me there is some but your fingers just seem to wave over the keyboard and it doesn't actually wind up in your posts. Frankly, I'm less interested in the non-existent evidence for Jesus than I am in this strange psychological phenomenon where people become hypnotized into the belief that there's all this evidence for Jesus.

Again, I told you one piece of the kind of weak evidence that supports the figure. If you want to debate it, take it to a thread about that subject. It's not like I have this absolute belief that there is knockout evidence for Jesus that proves he really danced on water. I just think the writings that we have are consistent with the notion there was at least one real guy that inspired the stories.

If you are really interested in the phenomenon of having opinions stronger than 'I guess it is a little supported' you should probably just use your memory:

crashfrog writes:

... I am an evolutionist and an atheist, so I hope you'll find it significant when I tell you that I do believe the historical person Jesus probably really did exist, though perhaps under a different name.

From Message 50

If you don't remember what caused you to say that six years ago, then you could always look at wikipedia or something to remind you. And then try arguing it in a thread where it is more appropriate.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 86 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 11:01 AM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 94 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 11:33 AM Modulous has responded

  
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


Message 93 of 165 (616774)
05-24-2011 11:23 AM
Reply to: Message 87 by ScientificBob
05-24-2011 11:01 AM


Re: The Unreasonable Reasoning of the Anti-Religious
but you're still an atheist if you are not a theist. There's only 2 options: you believe or you don't. Saying "i don't know" is the same as not believing (positively). Not believing = not being theist = you're an atheist.

It could be broken down differently though:

A. You believe god exists.
B. You don't believe god exists.
C. You don't know if god exists or not..
D. You believe god doesn't exist.
E. You don't believe god doesn't exist.
F. You don't know what you believe.

So you could not have a belief that god exists, but also not have a belief that he doesn't, and I don't think you should be considered an atheist for that.

I'm not sure any particular break-down is more correct than another, but I don't think you can force people to break it down the way you have chosen.

Another way to distinguish atheism from agnosticism is

1 = belief that god exists
0 = no belief either way
-1 = belief that god does not exist

Not 1 (!1) can be either 0 or -1 so simply being not 1 doesn't necessitate being a -1.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 87 by ScientificBob, posted 05-24-2011 11:01 AM ScientificBob has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 112 by ScientificBob, posted 05-25-2011 5:43 AM New Cat's Eye has acknowledged this reply

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 94 of 165 (616777)
05-24-2011 11:33 AM
Reply to: Message 92 by Modulous
05-24-2011 11:19 AM


Re: The Santa Gap
It's in all four Gospels.

You mentioned that it was in the Gospels. But what's the evidence?

The ones that followed him.

Who were the people who followed him?

Why is this starting to approach an Abbot and Costello routine?

The four Gospels.

What are the sources of the four Gospels?

There is no evidence that necessarily demonstrates Jesus' existence.

So, there's no evidence for the historicity of Jesus. Isn't that what I've been saying all along? And isn't that the opposite of what you meant all those times you kept saying "this is the evidence for the historicity of Jesus"?

I said there was some evidence that weakly supports the notion of a real apocolyptic jew that was executed which we call 'the historical jesus'.

And what is that evidence?

Again, I told you one piece of the kind of weak evidence that supports the figure.

If you did, I'm completely at a loss for what it was supposed to be. Like I said I'm reading your posts, anxious to see this evidence people keep referring to, and all of your posts are basically like this:

quote:
Sure, there's plenty of evidence for the historicity of Jesus, like

and

. That's the evidence.


Every time it's like you're just about to type in the evidence then you experience some kind of physical paralysis or mental blackout for just as long as it would have taken you to type in the evidence, and then you're like "that's the evidence."

What could possibly be the explanation for these lacuna?

I just think the writings that we have are consistent with the notion there was at least one real guy that inspired the stories.

Ok, but what writings? What writings are there that suggest there was a "real guy" who inspired the Gospels?

If you don't remember what caused you to say that six years ago

I do remember what caused me to say that six years ago - the utter conviction of all the people I thought were reasonable that they had evidence that there was a real historical Jesus. People like you. I assumed that there was no way they'd believe that on the basis of no evidence, and they said, like you've been saying, that there was evidence.

Eventually I got around to asking them what the evidence was and that's when I discovered the very curious phenomenon I've been referring to - the widespread conviction that there's all this evidence for a historical Jesus, but nobody is able to actually communicate it. When I say that people believe there's evidence for a historical Jesus despite not knowing about any of it, that's not a cheap rhetorical trick or a joke. I'm relating my own personal experience of actually being someone who thought there was all this evidence for a historical Jesus, but didn't actually know any of it. It happened to me! That's why I believe it's happening to you, and to everyone else who says there's abundant evidence for the existence of Jesus, but aren't able to actually recount any of the evidence.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 92 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 11:19 AM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 95 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 12:04 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 332 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 95 of 165 (616788)
05-24-2011 12:04 PM
Reply to: Message 94 by crashfrog
05-24-2011 11:33 AM


Re: The Santa Gap
You mentioned that it was in the Gospels. But what's the evidence?

In history, writings about a person are considered evidence. The historians job is to sift through that evidence and try to extract some kernel of historical truth.

Who were the people who followed him?

I was referring to those that believed him to be the Messiah. What is the relevance of this question?

So, there's no evidence for the historicity of Jesus. Isn't that what I've been saying all along? And isn't that the opposite of what you meant all those times you kept saying "this is the evidence for the historicity of Jesus"?

As I said, the apparent conflict of meaning is down to what we mean by evidence. You mean 'something that could only be if Jesus existed', which is not how I was using it. I referred to that kind of evidence as conclusive and from the outset I said I did not have that kind of evidence. It's not my fault you were demanding a kind of evidence from me that I openly stated I don't have from the outset.

If you did, I'm completely at a loss for what it was supposed to be. Like I said I'm reading your posts, anxious to see this evidence people keep referring to, and all of your posts are basically like this:

Sure, there's plenty of evidence for the historicity of Jesus, like

and

. That's the evidence.

If you were reading my posts and interpreting them to be starting with the premise 'there's plenty of evidence' there's no wonder you've made errors later on. I actually said there is weak evidence supporting the idea there was a historical Jesus, like the multiple attested reference to King of the Jews which goes against the viewpoint of the authors. This is the kind of thing that is usually referenced. Weak on its own, but similar tools are used to construct a historical Jesus that is consistent with the evidence (and the lack of evidence).

My position is that there is sufficient weak supporting evidence for a historical Jesus that denying the existence of said entity is taking steps beyond evidential support. It is kind of like denying that someone saw a cat because there is no supporting evidence. Cat sightings are common enough, and I dare say local religious groups would piss off the Roman government with some regularity. It seems consistent and coherent with what evidence we have that one poor sap got crucified and had a bunch of Chuck Norris style stories added onto his word of mouth biography.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 94 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 11:33 AM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 96 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 12:30 PM Modulous has responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 96 of 165 (616803)
05-24-2011 12:30 PM
Reply to: Message 95 by Modulous
05-24-2011 12:04 PM


Re: The Santa Gap
In history, writings about a person are considered evidence.

And I'm asking you, what are the writings to which you refer that corroborate the Gospel accounts?

I was referring to those that believed him to be the Messiah.

And who were those people?

What is the relevance of this question?

You referred to the attitudes and testimony of "Jesus's followers." I'm asking you who those people were and how you come to know about their attitudes and testimony.

As I said, the apparent conflict of meaning is down to what we mean by evidence.

And I've explained what I meant - I mean "evidence." You know:

quote:
Evidence in its broadest sense includes everything that is used to determine or demonstrate the truth of an assertion. Giving or procuring evidence is the process of using those things that are either (a) presumed to be true, or (b) were themselves proven via evidence, to demonstrate an assertion's truth. Evidence is the currency by which one fulfills the burden of proof.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence

I don't see why it's necessary to argue about the definition of "evidence" all of a sudden. We trade in evidence all the time around here. We've provided evidence for millions of positions, you and I, over half a decade or more of this interaction.

Now, all of a sudden, you don't know what "evidence" means? I refuse to believe that. Evidence is something that supports a proposition.

I'm asking you: what evidence is there that supports your contention that there was a real historical Jesus?

I actually said there is weak evidence supporting the idea there was a historical Jesus, like the multiple attested reference to King of the Jews which goes against the viewpoint of the authors.

Ok, so then the evidence is "weak." Granted.

But what is it? Even when you get to the part where you're about to put in the weak evidence there's a strange lacuna in your posts where you mention the evidence but never present it.

like the multiple attested reference to King of the Jews which goes against the viewpoint of the authors.

What references? What authors? This is the kind of reference to things you didn't actually present that I keep talking about. You're talking about "references" and "authors" you presented, but you didn't actually present them!

This is literally the first I've heard in this thread, from you, about any "references" or "authors." Was a post of yours deleted by some board mishap?

My position is that there is sufficient weak supporting evidence for a historical Jesus that denying the existence of said entity is taking steps beyond evidential support.

Ok, but what is the evidence?

It seems consistent and coherent with what evidence we have that one poor sap got crucified and had a bunch of Chuck Norris style stories added onto his word of mouth biography.

Maybe, but I'd like to judge for myself. So what evidence do we have?

Please, in your next post to me, present the evidence. Maybe in a convenient list form?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 95 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 12:04 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 97 by Thugpreacha, posted 05-24-2011 12:38 PM crashfrog has responded
 Message 99 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 1:03 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Thugpreacha
Member
Posts: 12680
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.1


Message 97 of 165 (616805)
05-24-2011 12:38 PM
Reply to: Message 96 by crashfrog
05-24-2011 12:30 PM


Biblical writings reliability on trial
Im sure he means the writings which compiled the Bible.

WE can throw away "divine inspiration", although it would be wise to question the intentions of the authors.

I have yet to see any solid evidence from antagonists of the Bible, at any rate.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 96 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 12:30 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 98 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 12:42 PM Thugpreacha has not yet responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 98 of 165 (616808)
05-24-2011 12:42 PM
Reply to: Message 97 by Thugpreacha
05-24-2011 12:38 PM


Re: Biblical writings reliability on trial
Im sure he means the writings which compiled the Bible.

What writings are those? What do they say, specifically?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 97 by Thugpreacha, posted 05-24-2011 12:38 PM Thugpreacha has not yet responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 332 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 99 of 165 (616818)
05-24-2011 1:03 PM
Reply to: Message 96 by crashfrog
05-24-2011 12:30 PM


Re: The Santa Gap
And I'm asking you, what are the writings to which you refer that corroborate the Gospel accounts?

I didn't refer to any such writings.

And who were those people?

Relevance?

You referred to the attitudes and testimony of "Jesus's followers." I'm asking you who those people were and how you come to know about their attitudes and testimony.

No - I was just saying that Messianic jews would be refer to the Messiah as the King of Israel not the King of the Jews. Do you want evidence for this?

And I've explained what I meant - I mean "evidence."

I know, and the conflict in our respective meanings resulted in the apparent conflict in what was being said.

Now, all of a sudden, you don't know what "evidence" means? I refuse to believe that. Evidence is something that supports a proposition.

Of course I know what 'evidence' means. I was referencing historical evidence, the use of primary and secondary sources to attempt to derive some historical truths. In the case of Jesus we only have secondary sources. Paul is the closest source we have, unfortunately he doesn't give us much information about Jesus.

I'm asking you: what evidence is there that supports your contention that there was a real historical Jesus?

I made no such contention. I merely said there was evidence that was suggestive of the reality of historical Jesus and that although that evidence is not on topic here, I gave a singular example of the kind of thing that is meant by this.

Ok, so then the evidence is "weak." Granted.

But what is it?

Not on topic. I've stated one example several times, you can look up other examples using the internet. You suggest you have done this. If your position is that together the case is still too weak, that's fine by me.

What references? What authors? This is the kind of reference to things you didn't actually present that I keep talking about.

The Gospel authors. I'm fairly sure I mentioned that before.

This is literally the first I've heard in this thread, from you, about any "references" or "authors."

I referenced the Gospel (and the authors of the Gospels) directly in Message 85.

quote:
In all four Gospels the Romans refer to Jesus as King of the Jews....Instead a consistent message that is somewhat at odds with the viewpoint of the authors.

Maybe, but I'd like to judge for myself. So what evidence do we have?

Please, in your next post to me, present the evidence. Maybe in a convenient list form?

The writings ,especially the earlier writings, of the New Testament. The information I'm sure we can dig up about the culture of the time, the nature of some of the reports, certain consilliences, things that are embarassing to the author or contrary to their agenda indicating kernels of truth here and there.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 96 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 12:30 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 100 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 1:13 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 100 of 165 (616822)
05-24-2011 1:13 PM
Reply to: Message 99 by Modulous
05-24-2011 1:03 PM


Re: The Santa Gap
No - I was just saying that Messianic jews would be refer to the Messiah as the King of Israel not the King of the Jews.

Ok, but what is the evidence that there was a Jesus who had followers who were "Messianic Jews"?

I was referencing historical evidence, the use of primary and secondary sources to attempt to derive some historical truths.

Ok, so what are the "primary sources" that are evidence for the historical existence of Jesus? And what are the "secondary sources" that are secondary to something other than the primary source? After all if I have a primary source in Alice making a claim, I don't need a secondary source Bob to remind me that "Alice says..." I know what Alice says because she said it to me.

In the case of Jesus we only have secondary sources.

Secondary to what? How do you know they're not primary?

I merely said there was evidence that was suggestive of the reality of historical Jesus and that although that evidence is not on topic here, I gave a singular example of the kind of thing that is meant by this.

Jesus, fine! But what is that evidence? I don't understand why it's so hard for you to answer. If you really don't know what it is, that's fine!

Not on topic.

I don't care what thread you put it in, Mod. If you'd prefer to reply in the evidence of Jesus thread, that's fine. I'm just asking you what the "weak evidence" is.

The Gospel authors.

What Gospel authors?

I referenced the Gospel (and the authors of the Gospels) directly in Message 85.

I'm not asking you about the Gospel or its authors, I'm asking you about the historical Jesus.

The writings ,especially the earlier writings, of the New Testament.

Don't treat me like an idiot, Modulous. I know where the Jesus stories are. I have, like, three Bibles around here.

I'm asking you about the evidence that those stories refer to someone who actually exists. You said it was "weak." Fine, it's weak. But what is it?

things that are embarassing to the author

What author? How do you know what would embarrass him?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 99 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 1:03 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 101 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 4:23 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 332 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 101 of 165 (616837)
05-24-2011 4:23 PM
Reply to: Message 100 by crashfrog
05-24-2011 1:13 PM


Re: The Santa Gap
The Gospels and the letters from Paul represent secondary sources to Jesus' existence. Primary sources would be direct witnesses or participants in Jesus' life.

Edited by Modulous, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 100 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 1:13 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 102 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 4:25 PM Modulous has responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 102 of 165 (616838)
05-24-2011 4:25 PM
Reply to: Message 101 by Modulous
05-24-2011 4:23 PM


Re: The Santa Gap
The Gospels and the letters from Paul represent secondary sources to Jesus' existence.

Only if Jesus actually existed. If he didn't then they're primary sources to the Jesus invention.

So, again, what's the evidence of the historical existence of Jesus?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 101 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 4:23 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 104 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 5:18 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Taq
Member
Posts: 7997
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.8


Message 103 of 165 (616840)
05-24-2011 4:31 PM
Reply to: Message 54 by Jon
05-23-2011 7:09 PM


Re: The Topic
My thesis, according to the OP, is that there are fundamentalist (strident, fanatic, or dogmatic) atheists making claims about the real world that are demonstrably unreasonable, unrealistic, and illogical.

It wouldn't take long to find atheists that fit this description. A scan of a few articles at HuffPo would probably turn up a few. I wouldn't doubt that you could find an atheist that praises the curative powers of homeopathy.

Nevertheless, under a false assumption that the adoption of atheism automatically makes one reasonable, realistic, and logical (or something like that), these fundamentalist atheists maintain their positions to be reasonable, realistic, and logical.

I really enjoy reading the articles at Pharyngula. This isn't because I agree with everthing that PZ says. I just find it entertaining. PZ walks a fine line between atheism and the strident anti-theist you are talking about. Sometimes he brazenly blows right past the line (which is why I find it entertaining). At the same time, he can be quite reasonable and even admit where his arguments could be flawed.

Can atheists be unreasonable and completely wrong on certain subjects? Well, yeah. Atheists are also human.

My main question is: If these claims are so ridiculous, why do these people make and cling to them? What is the mindset(s) fostering the irrationality of irrational (fundamentalist, strident, fanatic, or dogmatic) atheism?

Ego, emotional investment, defensiveness, . . . you know, our human flaws. Like anything, each and every claim needs to be judged by the evidence, not by who says it. Einstein got Relativity right, but his dogmatic position with respect to a Steady State universe did more harm than good as one example.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 54 by Jon, posted 05-23-2011 7:09 PM Jon has not yet responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 332 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 104 of 165 (616843)
05-24-2011 5:18 PM
Reply to: Message 102 by crashfrog
05-24-2011 4:25 PM


weakly supported suggests no strong opinions
Only if Jesus actually existed. If he didn't then they're primary sources to the Jesus invention.

Well obviously. But that can be said of any secondary source. Hence why they can only weakly support that Jesus existed. The challenge then becomes to try sorting through what is in there and filtering out what could be said about this person. What historians that have done this have ended up with is a weakly supported notion of a preacher that people at some point believed could perform miracles who was executed. It's hardly a controversial proposition, and one that seems strange to want to outright deny.

Returning towards the topic, I also note that it is possible to examine the same evidence and conclude otherwise, but I think that anyone that has strong opinions one way or another would fall under the category of people that Jon is trying to indict.

It seems that in this regard, Jon has hoisted himself on his own petard.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 102 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 4:25 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 105 by crashfrog, posted 05-24-2011 5:31 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply
 Message 106 by Jon, posted 05-24-2011 6:27 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 105 of 165 (616845)
05-24-2011 5:31 PM
Reply to: Message 104 by Modulous
05-24-2011 5:18 PM


Re: weakly supported suggests no strong opinions
But that can be said of any secondary source.

Well, right. That's why single sources aren't taken at face value.

It's relatively common for a primary source to claim to be a secondary source. The Lord of the Rings does this, for instance.

Hence why they can only weakly support that Jesus existed.

If they can't be corroborated then they provide no support, not even weak support, for the existence of a Jesus.

What historians that have done this have ended up with is a weakly supported notion of a preacher that people at some point believed could perform miracles who was executed.

Ok, but what's the evidence that that figure was the historical Jesus?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 104 by Modulous, posted 05-24-2011 5:18 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 107 by Thugpreacha, posted 05-24-2011 6:29 PM crashfrog has responded

  
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