Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Death Wish 2008

john w. loftus said...

“But it's precisely because of people like you, Steve, and Paul Manata, and JP Holding, and Frank Walton, that I am so motivated to destroy the delusional faith you have (even if Holding isn't a Calvinist). 30 years from now there will be many people who will have rejected the Christian faith from reading my book, and it will partially be your fault since neither you nor Paul, nor Holding nor Walton ever treated me like a human being. I have other major motivations for what I do, of course, but what you and your ilk have done is to pouring gas on the flames of my passion. Switching metaphors it makes me want to go for the jugular vein of your faith like nothing else. It's one thing for me to argue what I do because I think Christianity is a delusion, which it is. It's quite another thing for it to be made into a personal vendetta with me. You and your ilk have done just that. So, I should partially thank you for helping my book be as forceful as it is. I put my all into it. It should be out at the end of July. I just don't think you understand.”

That would explain why Loftus is so irrational. Logically speaking, why bother promoting atheism? Even if you think it’s true, is that a cause to live for? You might as well become a Televangelist for Ebola.

But, you see, Loftus views himself as a nullifidian version of Charles Bronson. He’s a brave, lone, vigilante who’s gonna single-handedly disinfest the Hood of Christian scum like Walton, Manata, and me. Cuz it’s personal, dude! A grudge match for the ages, baby!

Coming soon to movie theaters near you. Rated R for pervasive language, graphic violence, and drug references.

46 comments:

  1. ugh, why pick on someone who's venting, as if that's relevant to the argument?

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  2. Loftus fails to consider the power of God or the irony of his own complaint.

    1) The complaint about not being treated like a human being assumes that there some moral standard according to which humans should be treated. Otherwise, it's like saying that he's not being treated like a mole of powdered sulfur: it's meaningless. Yet, Loftus denies the source of morality, the Judge of the All the Earth.

    2) The comment claiming that the way he is treated motivated him, acknowledges the reality of causality. Yet Loftus denies the source of causality, the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth.

    3) Finally, Loftus' spear shaking is even less frightening than a two-year-old promising that he'll never love his mommy, because she took away his firetruck. The effect of Loftus' work is in God's hands: God may use it to convince people of the irrationality of atheism (and religious agnosticism) - God may even use it to draw an evangelist to Loftus that will show Loftus himself that he is on the path to eternal destruction.

    Don't underestimate God.

    -TurretinFan

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  3. Careful, TF. With such airtight reasoning, you're well on your way to earning Loftus's trademark response: "You're an idiot! I ban you from my blog."

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  4. Steve asks: "Logically speaking, why bother promoting atheism? Even if you think it’s true, is that a cause to live for?"

    John Loftus states: "It's one thing for me to argue what I do because I think Christianity is a delusion, which it is."

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  5. Bless his heart; Loftus sounds like the cocky kid who always got beat repeatedly in basketball when we were children then promised he would come back and win one day because "we just added fuel to the fire." Needless to say, the kid did show up often but erroneously brought only "two pieces of plastic to rub together" and "no fire was ever produced." Eventually, he just quit showing up.

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  6. THNUHTHNUH SAID:

    “ugh, why pick on someone who's venting, as if that's relevant to the argument?”

    I do the substantive stuff all the time. Moving the heavy lumber. I’ve dealt with what passes for Loftus’ “arguments” on a regular basis.

    Loftus has this traveling circus act of his. His revolving circus act. He rehashes the same old “20 Greatest Moth-Eaten, Flea-Bitten Arguments Against the Christian Faith.” He travels from town to town, along dusty roads, regaling his audience of four with the same hackneyed objections.

    He’s a fourth or fifth-tier atheist. You have the first-tier atheists. The high-level theorists. Then you have the famous popularizers. Then you have popularizers of popularizers. And so on and so forth.

    I’ve also addressed myself to the high-level thinkers.

    But there’s a bit more at issue than just “venting.” As TF points out, what does it mean, from a secular standpoint, to be treated “like a human being”? Does that mean to be treated like Pol Pot treated human beings?

    What *is* a human being according to naturalism? Is a human being entitled to special treatment? Why?

    It’s just a distinctive organization of matter, like a tree, or a chair. According to naturalism, a human being isn’t *for* anything. Homo sapiens survived while many hominids became extinct. And we too, will, become extinct.

    Our “values” are nothing more than brain chemistry and social conditioning. When I die, it’s as if I never walked the earth.

    So what does it mean to be treated like a human being? Loftus didn’t get his idea from a tough-minded examination of atheism. No, this is a diluted soup of Christian ethics. Man as the image of God—minus God.

    And I think it’s worth reminding people that atheism is a dry hole. There’s no point drilling a dry hole. There’s nothing there besides the dry hole. That’s it. If it’s true, that’s all there is. Just a hole in the ground. Nothing noble. Nothing liberating. Just a freshly dug grave, waiting for the casket.

    Mind you, I don’t think that Christianity is doubtful. And I don’t give this as a reason to believe in Christianity. But I do give this as reason to dissuade seekers from wasting their time on atheism. Don’t fritter away your life on a losing proposition. Atheism is the ultimate lost cause.

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  7. Steve: "Atheism is the ultimate lost cause."

    If I may be crassly blunt, atheism is also the ultimate foolishness.

    Please see Peter Pike's "Out of the Closet" post. He'll also tell you how unnecessarily foolish Atheism is.

    Thnuhthnuh, are you an atheist too?

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  8. FWIW, if I got to choose between John Loftus being an Angry Atheist or an Arminian Christian, I'd choose for him to become an Arminian.

    Of course the best option would be if he became a Calvinist who was lovingly discipled by Reform Baptist Steve Hays.

    ;-)

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  9. Thnuhthnuh, are you an atheist too?
    Yes of course. And if I may ask, have you ever examined your own faith in the light of form criticism?

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  10. "And if I may ask, have you ever examined your own faith in the light of form criticism?"

    Accusations and criticisms from the Accuser of the Brethren are to be expected. Is "form" criticism your preferred approach to annoy Christians?

    More importantly, atheism is ultimately foolish and the ultimate lost cause. You and John Loftus need to do a 180 and submit yourselves to Christ.

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  11. This is all very interesting. I am curious to know how John feels his book will improve and expand the atheist market, after such works as The God Delusion and God is not Great. I take it that he thinks he has something to add which will elevate his name onto that venerable pedestal currently occupied by the likes of Dawkins and Harris?

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  12. Form criticism posits a lengthy phase of creative oral tradition. That assumption has been critiqued by such diverse scholars as Alan Millard and Maurice Casey.

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  13. Turretinfan said:
    "1) The complaint about not being treated like a human being assumes that there some moral standard according to which humans should be treated. Otherwise, it's like saying that he's not being treated like a mole of powdered sulfur: it's meaningless. Yet, Loftus denies the source of morality, the Judge of the All the Earth."

    Oooh... not the moral argument! Good thing that Loftus denies "the Judge of the All the Earth" and does not stone kids, own slaves, kill graven image makers and kill gays. Now prove that "the Judge of the All the Earth" is the source of morality and then come back to us thanks. (Euthyphro dilemma or will you tell us how G_d's mind work?)


    Turretinfan said:
    2) The comment claiming that the way he is treated motivated him, acknowledges the reality of causality. Yet Loftus denies the source of causality, the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth.

    Now prove that the "source of causality" is "the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth", thanks. There seem to be no claim big enough Christians can write without proof and acceptance by the fellow Christians. That is a real group circular reasoning.


    Turretinfan said:
    3) The effect of Loftus' work is in God's hands: God may use it to convince people of the irrationality of atheism (and religious agnosticism) - God may even use it to draw an evangelist to Loftus that will show Loftus himself that he is on the path to eternal destruction.

    Allah works mysterious ways. Who knows maybe Loftus comes to his senses and realise that Thursday is named after the only god worth worshipping.


    Peter Pike said:
    "Careful, TF. With such airtight reasoning..."
    Oooh.. the miracle of Christian logic.

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  14. PETER SAID:

    “Oooh... not the moral argument! Good thing that Loftus denies ‘the Judge of the All the Earth’ and does not stone kids, own slaves, kill graven image makers and kill gays. Now prove that ‘the Judge of the All the Earth’ is the source of morality and then come back to us thanks.”

    You’re assuming what you need to prove, namely: that these attributions would be incompatible with God as the source of morality.

    Thanks for sharing your opinion, but do you have a supporting argument to back up your tendentious opinion?

    Now prove that you have a sufficient source for your moralistic value judgments, and then come back to us. Thanks.

    “Euthyphro dilemma.”

    I, for one, have refuted this pseudo-dilemma on more than one occasion. You’re way behind the curve. Try again.

    “Or will you tell us how G_d's mind work?”

    We don’t have to since God already told us in his word. Divine self-revelation.

    “Now prove that the ‘source of causality’ is ‘the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth’, thanks.”

    That’s an ambiguous demand. It’s like claiming that I can’t prove who sideswiped my car unless the same proof can also prove that he’s a heart surgeon, a father of two children, a golfer, and a Little League coach.

    I’d add that TF doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel. There are many versions of the cosmological argument. Why don’t you brush up on the standard literature?

    “There seem to be no claim big enough Christians can write without proof and acceptance by the fellow Christians. That is a real group circular reasoning.”

    There seems to be no claim big enough physicists can write without proof and acceptance by the fellow physicists. That is a real group circular reasoning.

    “Allah works mysterious ways.”

    Islam is self-refuting. Muhammed claimed to be a successor to the OT and NT prophets. Since his message is inconsistent with the witness of the Bible, he thereby falsified his claims by his own frame of reference. Try again.

    “Oooh.. the miracle of Christian logic.”

    Given your evident ignorance of Christian apologetics and philosophical theology, as well as your question-begging objections, "Christian logic" is looking pretty good right now compared to your nullifidian illogicality.

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  15. I had popped in here, thinking that I would need to respond to Peter's comments. I see Steve has already addressed them better than I probably would myself.

    All I can add is to clarify a couple of things.

    First, items (1) and (2) deal with the irony of Loftus complaint. His complaint is ironic totally aside from whether or not I can prove the facts that make it ironic. It's an objective fact. God is the Judge of all the Earth - the Earth He Himself created. There was a beginning, and there will be an end of this world, and of your life Peter. Mortality is 100% in the long run. After that: the judgment. Whether you believe those things or not doesn't change their objective reality - just as not believing that the sun's core is hot doesn't turn it to ice.

    As to point (3), I was pointing out how little Loftus threats frighten a consistent Reformed believer. God is in control. God is not only the Creator and Judge, he's also the Provider. Nothing comes to pass outside of his sovereign decrees.

    Consider that ... now's the time for repentance from sin, and trust in the Son of God - for even your own conscience tells you that judgment is coming for your sins - and His is the only name under heaven whereby you can be saved. You should probably be lest worried about whether I can rigorously prove things to you, and more worried about the state of your soul: about where you will go when you die. In short, if you are worried about having something completely proved to you (beyond all doubt), you're worrying about the wrong thing.

    -TurretinFan

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  16. Peter:

    "Oooh... not the moral argument! Good thing that Loftus denies "the Judge of the All the Earth" (emphasis mine)

    Oooh... not the normative argument. Good thing I reject norms in favor of descriptiuons 'round the board. Now, care to prove the existence of "norms" such that you can evaluate, rather than describe what people do?

    "Now prove that the "source of causality" is "the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth", thanks."

    I'd say that's tautologous. If there is a "creator of heaven and earth", then we have the source of causality.

    Say you want to deny the creation of heaven and earth. What are you left with that account for everything? Naturalistic evolution?

    But the problem there is that our cognitive faculties would be aimed at survival, not the production of true beliefs - since the two aren't interchangeable.

    Given naturalistic evolution, what's the probability that our cognitive faculties would be aimed at producing true beliefs? Given all the possible scenarios whereby survival could be acheived without true beliefs, the probability is low, or inscrutable.

    So supernaturalism avoids the defeater for your cognitive faculties. That is, the heavens and earth were created by an intelligent being. From there it is almost tautologous to inquire whether it is the source of causality, since it is the source of creation itself.

    You furthermore have a defeater for all your beliefs, including your belief that the above argument is wrong.

    "Allah works mysterious ways. Who knows maybe Loftus comes to his senses and realise that Thursday is named after the only god worth worshipping."

    How doe sthis help atheism out? You just admitted that coming to ones "senses" would involve belief in a deity. Are you admitting that atheism is nonsensiacal? How candid.

    "Oooh.. the miracle of Christian logic.

    Oooh.. the miracle of naturalistically produced cognitive faculties, fine-tuned over millions and millions of years of trial and error. From the zoo, to the goo, to you.

    =======

    (*) "With me, the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man's mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey's mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?" -Charles Darwin


    (*) "The idea that one species of organism is, unlike all the others, oriented not just toward its own increated prosperity but toward Truth, is as un-Darwinian as the idea that every human being has a built-in moral compass--a conscience that swings free of both social history and individual luck." (Richard Rorty, "Untruth and Consequences," The New Republic, July 31, 1995, pp. 32-36.)

    (*) "A revised and modernized materialism concludes from all this that human thought and feeling is the product of a series of unthinking and unfeeling processes originated in the big bang." (Richard C. Vitzthum, "Materialism: An Afiirmative History and Definition," Prometheus Books, 1995, pp.218-219,)

    (*) "Materialism should no longer wink at such nonsense but insist that the foundations of all human thought and feeling are grossly irrational." ( Richard C Vitzthum, "Materialism: An Afiirmative History and Definition," Prometheus Books, 1995, p. 220.)

    (*) "Boiled down to its essentials, a nervous system that enables the organism to succeed in...feeding, fleeing, fighting, and reproducing. The principle [sic] chore of nervous systems is to get the body parts where they should be in order that the organism may survive. Improvements in their sensorimotor control confer an evolutionary advantage: a fancier style of representing is advantageous so long as it is geared to the organism's way of life and enhances the organism's chances for survival. Truth, whatever that is, takes the hindmost." (Praticia Churchland, "Epistemology in the Age of Neuroscience," Journal of Philosophy 84 (October 1987): 548).

    ========

    Aint mammy nature grand?

    Reliable cognitive faculties given the above? Talk about "miracles!"

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  17. Steve said:
    "Thanks for sharing your opinion, but do you have a supporting argument to back up your tendentious opinion?"

    Less people believe in a holy book which states that non-believers in their God(s) should be killed, better chances I have to survive. One less potential suicide bombers trying to find a short cut to heaven...


    Steve said:
    "I, for one, have refuted this [Euthyphro] pseudo-dilemma on more than one occasion. You’re way behind the curve. Try again."

    OK, if You refuted it (why many times) then it is refuted. BTW what was the solution (link?)


    Steve said:
    "Divine self-revelation"

    Who got this Joseph Smith, Mohammed,...


    Steve said:
    [Turretinfan said] "Yet Loftus denies the source of causality, the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth."
    [Peter said] “Now prove that the ‘source of causality’ is ‘the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth’, thanks.”
    [Steve said] That’s an ambiguous demand.

    Keep on making those statements...


    Steve said:
    "Islam is self-refuting."

    Once you come back to Allah and accept Him as your God you will realise He is the only true God.


    Turretinfan said:
    "Mortality is 100% in the long run [what?] After that: the judgment. Whether you believe those things or not doesn't change their objective reality - just as not believing that the sun's core is hot doesn't turn it to ice.."

    I guess Loftus and other agree with you about objective reality. It is just if your particular God (or other gods) exist in reality. Your belief make them objective reality. How would your reality differentiate the action of the OT God and the demons of the Quran? Humans would not have capability to distinguise that...


    Turretinfan said:
    "if you are worried about having something completely proved to you (beyond all doubt), you're worrying about the wrong thing."

    God just revealed to me that you, Turretinfan, MUST donate $1000 to your local autism support group in order to get to heaven. I can not completely prove that to you but if you are worried about having something completely proved to you (beyond all doubt), you're worrying about the wrong thing. Please donate now or burn.


    Paul Manata (and Steve), I like your standard apologist approach that rather than defending the Christian argument you rather attack non-Christian view. I guess it is good way to try to move from the subject in hand, so I'll bite just a little bit.


    Paul Manata said:
    "I'd say that's tautologous. If there is a "creator of heaven and earth", then we have the source of causality"

    I disagree. Causality = necessary relationship between two events. If one person shoots another is God the source of that relationship between trigger being pulled and and bullet leaving the gun?


    Paul Manata said:
    "But the problem there is that our cognitive faculties would be aimed at survival, not the production of true beliefs - since the two aren't interchangeable."

    You generalise too much here. Survival of the fittest will help to evolve a belief that if you jump off the cliff you might die. Some true beliefs evolve, but ideas do not necessary survive because those are true. Religions and belief that you dont actually die when you die might be one of the ideas that help us survive without being true. People believe in all kinds of wierd things...


    Paul Manata said:
    "How does [Allah works mysterious ways] help atheism out? You just admitted that coming to ones "senses" would involve belief in a deity. Are you admitting that atheism is nonsensiacal? How candid."

    Sorry, I was being sarcastic. Loftus is fine now.

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  18. Peter,

    "Paul Manata (and Steve), I like your standard apologist approach that rather than defending the Christian argument you rather attack non-Christian view. I guess it is good way to try to move from the subject in hand, so I'll bite just a little bit.

    i) I didn't know there was "the Christian argument."

    ii) I didn't initially offer any "Christian argument," so why should I have to "defend" it?

    iii) Another way you could look at it:

    Since Christianity is surely a possible alternative, then refuting other possible alternatives has its apologetic advantage.

    So, if there is worldview a, b, c, d, e, f, etc., and I pick those off, then the case for Christianity becomes even stronger.

    This is standard. Physicalists frequently try to show the problems inherent in dualism, thus showing physicalism a more viable option.

    iv) You haven't *refuted* any positive argument. So, to pretend that we need to "defend" Christianity against your "attacks," is simply disingenuous. Asking stupid questions, dripping in admitted sarcasm, isn't an *argument* one needs to "defend" himself against. So, the standard arguments and evidences are out there. You didn't offer any counter-argument, hence I don't need to "defend" them.


    "Paul Manata said:
    "I'd say that's tautologous. If there is a "creator of heaven and earth", then we have the source of causality"

    I disagree. Causality = necessary relationship between two events. If one person shoots another is God the source of that relationship between trigger being pulled and and bullet leaving the gun?


    I disagree: The creator of *everything* cannot have created itself. So it's tautologous that the source of causality is the creator of all things.

    Furthermore, if one person shoots another person, his actions, the gun, the bullet, the "laws" of physics, etc., are all immediately upheld and sustained by God. No God upholding, no person shooting. See Corduan for arguments to this effect.

    A contingent being requires a cause for its existence, so long as its contingent, it requires a cause. This cannot go on forever, hence non-contingent cause.

    So, "heavens and earth" stands for "all contingent things," and "all contingent things" could not have been caused by a "contingent thing" (since that would need a cause), and so it must be caused by a non-dependent entity outside the chain that actualizes the potential without being actualized itself by the chain. If there is no outside being, then there is no contingent being. There is contingent being. There is non-contingent being.

    In other words, the source of all causality is a non-contingent being, and so must be the creator of "contingent beings."

    Tautologous, as I said.

    "You generalise too much here. Survival of the fittest will help to evolve a belief that if you jump off the cliff you might die. Some true beliefs evolve, but ideas do not necessary survive because those are true. Religions and belief that you dont actually die when you die might be one of the ideas that help us survive without being true. People believe in all kinds of wierd things..."

    These aren't *arguments.* You just *mocked* us above as not defending arguments. It is simply an *assertion* that evolution can do the trick.

    Here's four options of how beliefs might play out in the evolutionary-naturalist's story:


    i. Our beliefs do not cause our behavior - epiphenomenalism.

    ii. Beliefs do cause behavior, but in virtue of syntax and not semantics (ie.., neural structure, not content) - semantic epiphenomenalism.

    iii. Beliefs cause behavior, both semantically and syntactically, but are maladaptive.

    iv. Beliefs cause behavior by semantics and syntax, and the behavior caused is adaptive, i.e., the creature's body parts get in the right place to survive.

    Granting you can even *account* for the intelligibility of having *beliefs* of you are a physicalist, what option above?

    I'm asking about the reliability of our alethic belief producing faculties. I'm asking why unguided naturalistic evolution should pick for beliefs that are "true" rather than beliefs which are simply geared toward survival. One could have false beliefs yet still survive. Given the story of evolution by folks like Churchland, why think evolution selected for true beliefs? Thus Churchland:

    "Boiled down to essentials, a nervous system enables the organism to succeed in the four F's: feeding, fleeing, fighting and reproducing. The principle chore of nervous systems is to get the body parts where they should be in order that the organism may survive. . . . . Improvements in sensorimotor control confer an evolutionary advantage: a fancier style of representing is advantageous so long as it is geared to the organism's way of life and enhances the organism's chances of survival [Churchland's emphasis]. Truth, whatever that is, definitely takes the hindmost."

    cf. the other quotes I gave above.

    So, given that your cognitive faculties (CF) were produced by random mutations over millions of years, in an unguided and purposeless process, why think their *function* is the production of true beliefs? People can *survive* with false beliefs. And, the goal *is* survival. What's the probability that our CFs are reliably R aimed at producing true beliefs given naturalism and evolution? Do you think it is *high*? Why? And, why don't many evolutionists? Some have claimed we hit the epistemic lottery! Why are they wrong? Or is that your position? And, if it is, why think the appeal to luck is a defeater-defeater? That appeal wouldn't work in *paradigm* cases of probability defeat for R?

    S's ingesting the epistemically corrosive agent XX - where hallucinations occur in 90% of the incidents of ingestion. S comes top believe that (a) she has ingested XX and (b) that it causes hallucinations in 90% of those who take it. (a) and (b) constitute a defeater for R. Suppose that S's noetic structure doesn't seem "massively incoherent" to her, though. Would we say this delivers S from defeat? No. She may even say, "I've won the XX lottery, and am in the lucky 90%," but this belief, developed *after* she has ingested XX, and so *after* she accepts (a) and (b) and thus accepts P(R / XX) as low she forms her lotto belief, we would say she has a defeater for those beliefs.

    Moreover, the argument is against a *reflective* naturalist. That someone continues to act as if his CFs are R, does not mean that upon reflection he doesn't have an alethic-rationality-defeater of the Humean variety for R. So, when you go home and *reflect* on your epistemic situation, you would *then* gain a defeater for all your beliefs, e.g., jumping off cliff will kill me.

    So, at best you show that you can be *proper function* rational, but that's not where the argument is aimed at. It is an *alethic* rationality defeater, for the reflective nat-evo. A person S who ingested the corrosive epistemic agent, XX, might not jump the cliff either. But, if S knew that she had ingested XX, and knew it caused hallucinations in 90% of those who took it, then *upon reflection* she would obtain a defeater for her beliefs: i.e., her belief that there was a cliff, that she could jump, that jumping off of it would kill her, etc.

    Anyway, your answer totally begged the question against evolutionary argument against naturalism.

    "Sorry, I was being sarcastic. Loftus is fine now."

    But with this admission you show you didn't answer TFs comment.

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  19. "Less people believe in a holy book which states that non-believers in their God(s) should be killed, better chances I have to survive. One less potential suicide bombers trying to find a short cut to heaven..."

    But history doesn't bear this out. See the many responses to the New Atheists.

    In fact, less people believing in atheistic materialism, the better chance I have to survive.

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  20. Peter wrote: "Less people believe in a holy book which states that non-believers in their God(s) should be killed, better chances I have to survive. One less potential suicide bombers trying to find a short cut to heaven..."

    Your concerns are in the wrong place. You're going to die anyway, and after that comes the judgment. That needs to be your priority, because the judgment will determine your quality of life eternally.

    Peter said: "I guess Loftus and other agree with you about objective reality. It is just if your particular God (or other gods) exist in reality. Your belief make them objective reality. How would your reality differentiate the action of the OT God and the demons of the Quran? Humans would not have capability to distinguise that..."

    God's existence is revealed through the Bible. Failure to believe that objective reality doesn't make it go away, and frankly - deep down - you know that.

    Peter wrote: "God just revealed to me that you, Turretinfan, MUST donate $1000 to your local autism support group in order to get to heaven. I can not completely prove that to you but if you are worried about having something completely proved to you (beyond all doubt), you're worrying about the wrong thing. Please donate now or burn."

    Like asking for something to be completely proved to you (beyond all doubt) mocking is also a waste of your time, and a misdirection of your energy - energy that should be directed toward repentance for your sin.

    But - do as you please. Mock those who warn you of destruction. From our standpoint, you look a child laughing at his silly mother who thinks that the beautiful airy flames of fire are going to somehow hurt him. "Prove it, Mama! Oh, you cannot prove it to my satisfaction? Mama, this carpet is going to turn your feet into moths - better not stand on it."

    And the stupid child just gets his hands burnt, and they heal back. But the person who ignores his own sins and judgment day has a far far worse fate. Consider and turn from your sin.

    -TurretinFan

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  21. Paul Manata said:
    "I didn't initially offer any "Christian argument," so why should I have to "defend" it?

    You seem to have defended Turretinfan's argument and position...


    "Since Christianity is surely a possible alternative, then refuting other possible alternatives has its apologetic advantage. So, if there is worldview a, b, c, d, e, f, etc., and I pick those off, then the case for Christianity becomes even stronger. This is standard. Physicalists frequently try to show the problems inherent in dualism, thus showing physicalism a more viable option."

    Common fallacy. When the possibilities go from a, b, c - ∞ your refuting one does not improve your changes. This problem is not inherently a dualistic so you comparison to physicalists is misleading.


    Paul Manata said:
    "But history doesn't bear this [less theists less violence] out. See the many responses to the New Atheists."

    Link?. I think you need to do your math again. Start your calculations from the 20th century and work your way back to the 1st century... BTW when was the last war in the name of non-belief?


    Paul Manata said:
    "So, given that your cognitive faculties (CF) were produced by random mutations over millions of years, in an unguided and purposeless process, why think their *function* is the production of true beliefs?

    Common strawman that the process of evolution is unguided and purposeless. Your following claims were build on this false assertion. You might want to brush up your evolution knowledge.


    Paul Manata said:
    "People can *survive* with false beliefs. And, the goal *is* survival."

    I already agreed with you that people can survive with false beliefs. False belief might even help you to pass on your genes.


    Turretinfan said:
    "Like asking for something to be completely proved to you (beyond all doubt) mocking is also a waste of your time"

    How do you know that I am mocking? You can not be completely sure of that. So it is your last change donate or burn.


    Turretinfan said:
    "You're going to die anyway, and after that comes the judgment"
    "God's existence is revealed through the Bible."

    Yes sure. And let me guess, only Christians from your denomination will get to heaven. Everyone else is just delusional heretic, who deserve the eternal torment from the loving merciful God.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Common strawman that the process of evolution is unguided and purposeless. Your following claims were build on this false assertion. You might want to brush up your evolution knowledge.

    How is this a strawman? Are you saying that evolution is a teleologically-oriented process? If so, what citation can you give for this claim, as I'm fairly sure that the majority of evolutionists would disagree? What "purpose" do you think the evolutionary process has; and given that it's non-rational, who "guides" it?

    Regards,
    Bnonn

    ReplyDelete
  23. Turretinfan said (previously):
    "Like asking for something to be completely proved to you (beyond all doubt) mocking is also a waste of your time"

    Peter responded: "How do you know that I am mocking? You can not be completely sure of that. So it is your last change donate or burn."

    Interestingly, whether you think it justified or not, I am completely sure that you're mocking (and virtually everyone else reading this is dialog is sure of the same thing) and you are completely sure that I'm not mocking you. Think about that.

    Turretinfan said (previously):
    "You're going to die anyway, and after that comes the judgment"
    "God's existence is revealed through the Bible."

    Peter replied: "Yes sure. And let me guess, only Christians from your denomination will get to heaven. Everyone else is just delusional heretic, who deserve the eternal torment from the loving merciful God."

    a) No, everyone (including those from my denomination) deserves the eternal death of hell from the Holy and Just God. It is what your and my sins deserves.

    b) All who turn to God, repenting of their sins and trusting in Christ alone for salvation will be saved - not only those from my denomination.

    c) But again, your mocking tone seems to suggest that you feel you can pass moral judgment on the God of the Bible? Why's that? What gives you that courage? What gives you a moral standard by which to judge Him who Created the Heavens and the Earth?

    -TurretinFan

    ReplyDelete
  24. "You seem to have defended Turretinfan's argument and position..."

    No, I seemed to point out errors in your comments, regarldess.

    "Common fallacy. When the possibilities go from a, b, c - ∞ your refuting one does not improve your changes. This problem is not inherently a dualistic so you comparison to physicalists is misleading."

    Fine in theory (if I grant an infinite amount of worldviews), but I was making my objections in the real world. Where there are a finite number of options on the table. Moreover, in na debate, since no one can debate everything at once, it's usually those two options on the table. Other representatives of other positions can get their chance another time.

    And, in fact, the very point I made is in lots of literature, literature, from atheists at that. You'll frequently here that refutations of various permutations of gods makes the case for atheism probabilistically higher. Perhaps these guys are guilty of these "fallacies" too?

    "Link?. I think you need to do your math again. Start your calculations from the 20th century and work your way back to the 1st century... BTW when was the last war in the name of non-belief?

    No link, reading. Even reading non-Christians, honest ones, that is. You could try that past-time for yourself.

    "Common strawman that the process of evolution is unguided and purposeless. Your following claims were build on this false assertion. You might want to brush up your evolution knowledge."

    Not in the sense I was using it, and not according to evolutionists themselevs. See Naturalism Defeated ed. Beilby for admissions on behalf of evolutuionists to this point, i.e., the point made in the argument. The purpose is one of *function* viz., "the hearts purpose is to pump blood." But of course my argument, as I even stated above, wasn't against "proper function." Sorry, I took it that you were familiar with the literature since you were popping off like a tough guy.

    So, perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the argument? The terms? The players? So that you can properly interact with my distilled versions. Or did you want me to do that work for you as well?

    "I already agreed with you that people can survive with false beliefs. False belief might even help you to pass on your genes."

    Right, and this bodes in my favor. You granted a major premise of EAAN. So out of the 4 options I gave you, which dfo you take? All except 4 are easy to show a low probability. You granted me 4. Hence you ahve a defeater for the reliability of CF.

    So, brush up on the standard literature, as Steve said, and then come back.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Dominic Bnonn Tennant said:
    "How is this a strawman? Are you saying that evolution is a teleologically-oriented process?"

    Evolutions is "guided" but he nature/environment and purpose of most living things is to survive and pass on their genes to the next generation. Most theist/creationist argue that there some kind of "ultimate purpose" beyond the natural world, which may/may not be true, but I dont think you find evolutionist claiming that evolution is unguided. Readig his last comment Paul Manata seem to have refered to this kind of "ultimate purpose"


    Turretinfan said:
    "I am completely sure that you're mocking and you are completely sure that I'm not mocking you."

    The point non-believers normally make is that how can you be sure. If you believe Jesus is the son of God you will go to Muslim hell, if you don't you'll go to Christian hell. Both sides are not convincing others and mostly following the religion of their ancestors who themselves were force converted.

    Turretinfan said:
    "All who turn to God, repenting of their sins and trusting in Christ alone for salvation will be saved - not only those from my denomination"

    Theological experts disagree with you. Pope said there is no salvation outside the (Catholic) Church. Protestants think Catholic Church is apostatite. Are Mormons and JW going to heaven? I just attended an Anglican speech and they told me that Catholics do go to hell. So how are you so sure??


    Turretinfan said:
    "your mocking tone seems to suggest that you feel you can pass moral judgment on the God of the Bible"

    I more like pass the judgment on intolerant people who follow a particular holy book and go stoning kids, non-virgins, gays, unbelievers, witches, sorcerers, Sabbath breakers, graven image makers... and claim that that is the will of loving, mercyful God.


    Paul Manata said:
    "I was making my objections in the real world. Where there are a finite number of options on the table."

    Not so, there are infine number of religious possibilities to "find" the salvation. You have to consider all the options not presented yet (or now disregarded). Even if you try to refute existing religions/cults new ones emerge faster that you can study their theologies. Tens of new denominations/cults are founded weekly.

    Paul Manata said:
    "You'll frequently here that refutations of various permutations of gods makes the case for atheism probabilistically higher. Perhaps these guys are guilty of these "fallacies" too?"

    It depends on the argument. If an atheist argue about the existance of God(s) options are infinitive. If the argument is about God who has revealed him/herself to us lately the options are finite. Theist also claim to know the way to salvation so they have to address all the denominations of their religion where atheist only need to refute their God(s), but of course both can have infinitive options.

    Paul Manata said:
    "You could try [reading about war/non-belief] past-time for yourself."

    I recently read Allister McGrath's The Twilight of Atheism and Vox Day's latest. Both of those address this issue and seem to be repeating old arguments about atheism and war/deaths/moral, and are not really addressing the dark history of Christianity from 4th century to 20th century. Can you please recommend a better source to read?

    Paul Manata said:
    "Right, and this bodes in my favor. You granted a major premise of EAAN. So out of the 4 options I gave you, which dfo you take? All except 4 are easy to show a low probability. You granted me 4. Hence you ahve a defeater for the reliability of CF."

    Critics of Plantinga's argument have pointed out that maybe natural selection does not "care" about the truth or falsity of beliefs, but only behavior, but it does not follow that true and false beliefs are equally likely to evolve. Also empirical (repeatably testable) beliefs may develop in a different way than supernatural beliefs. Critics have also argued that Plantinga applies to Cartesian view which is rejected but people like Daniel Dennett in favor of pragmatism. Some have also argued about Plantinga's notion of "low or inscrutable" as poorly supported/proved idea. My exposure to Plantinga's argument is only reading couple of Dennett's books and little about "cognitive faculties", so you are right I should read more about it before coming back to you.

    Paul Manata said:
    "I took it that you were familiar with the literature since you were popping off like a tough guy."

    I'm no tough guy nor claim to be an expert, just studing these subjects.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Peter,

    Not so, there are infine number of religious possibilities to "find" the salvation. You have to consider all the options not presented yet (or now disregarded). Even if you try to refute existing religions/cults new ones emerge faster that you can study their theologies. Tens of new denominations/cults are founded weekly."

    I disagree and see no reason to accept these assertions. It certainly isn't obvious to me, or virtually anyone else involved in these debates . . . besides you. I also granted that there are an infinite number of possibilities *in theory*. But most people don't have a problem admitting there are only a few competitors. When I read the relevant books, articles, journal entries, etc., in the field today, virtually everyone grants that there are only a few serious competitors. Yeah, the FSM is a "possible worldview," but no one takes it seriously. Your point is simply a pedantic one which no serious philosopher that I am familiar with takes seriously.

    I also note you didn't respond to my practical point about debates and two options on the table. I love it when atheists act like they can defend *atheism* by pointing out the possibility of other *theisms*. Your comment about our "apologetic strategy" was in the context of a debate with an *atheist* (you). So, given the context of the debate, as we took it, we have: atheism vs. Christianity. You complained that we railed against atheism to support Christianity. But surely in practical matters, you can see the value in this. Atheism or Christianity. Not-atheism. Christianity.

    In the real world, everyone knows the options are limited. Your claims about "new ones" and "theologies" are often variations on old themes. It is also ambiguous enough as to give your comments an air of validity. I suspect that once analyzed, it would get thrown into the trash heap of specious arguments, where it belongs.

    And, furthermore, you undermine books like "The Improbability of God" which seek to show the improbability of theism based on the refutation of specific theistic gods or doctrines.

    Your argument undercuts Martin et al. and so I wonder what allows you to point out the "school boy" fallacies these guys are committing. Have you emailed Martin? I have. I have also spoken to him on the phone. Not hard to get in touch with.

    The often argue:

    Probably:

    Not Greek gods.

    Not finite gods of any kind.

    Not polytheism.

    Therefore,

    Probably not Christianity either.

    They often argue:

    This argument fails.

    That argument fails.

    Etc.

    So, there probably is no good argument for God's existence.

    Your ignorance of your own sides arguments is distressing.


    "I recently read Allister McGrath's The Twilight of Atheism and Vox Day's latest. Both of those address this issue and seem to be repeating old arguments about atheism and war/deaths/moral, and are not really addressing the dark history of Christianity from 4th century to 20th century. Can you please recommend a better source to read?"

    I read both of those as well. I am aware of the literature on your side having read Hitchens, Dawkins, Harris, Dennett, etc. Not convinced by the dubious arguments your side puts forward. I also found the specific rebuttals to the whole 4th - 21st century thing to land on the mark. Can you offer a better argument than you have? I don't buy it.

    I wrote a parody of Hitchens' book. The success of my parody shows the weakness of these kinds of arguments.

    http://triablogue.blogspot.com/2007/12/good-is-not-great-how-morality-poisons.html

    "Critics of Plantinga's argument have pointed out that maybe natural selection does not "care" about the truth or falsity of beliefs, but only behavior, but it does not follow that true and false beliefs are equally likely to evolve."

    I don't understand how this comment is relevant. I don't see the work you think it is doing.

    "Also empirical (repeatably testable) beliefs may develop in a different way than supernatural beliefs."

    I don't see the work you think this is doing in response to EAAN. I don't see how it rebuts anything I have said.

    "Critics have also argued that Plantinga applies to Cartesian view which is rejected but people like Daniel Dennett in favor of pragmatism."

    I have read, I think, almost everything out there to date on EAAN, I don't see how this argument is supposed to be working for you.

    "Some have also argued about Plantinga's notion of "low or inscrutable" as poorly supported/proved idea."

    I know some have, but I don't find their arguments successful. If you do, how? Besides Plantinga, you could read Troy Nunley's doctoral dissertation on EAAN, it's online for free. He also answers these types of objections.

    "My exposure to Plantinga's argument is only reading couple of Dennett's books and little about "cognitive faculties", so you are right I should read more about it before coming back to you."

    Sounds good. Btw, I wonder why they didn't call Dennett to contribute to the critiques of Plantinga in Nat. Defeated, ed. Beilby? Seems they called on all sorts of top-gun atheistic scientists and philosophers. If Dennett's stuff was so hot, why not use him?

    "I'm no tough guy nor claim to be an expert, just studing these subjects."

    Give me a break, read your first post in the thread. If you can't even be honest with yourself, why should I think you're being honest with me?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Turretinfan said (previously):
    "I am completely sure that you're mocking and you are completely sure that I'm not mocking you."

    Peter: "The point non-believers normally make is that how can you be sure. If you believe Jesus is the son of God you will go to Muslim hell, if you don't you'll go to Christian hell. Both sides are not convincing others and mostly following the religion of their ancestors who themselves were force converted."

    a) Of course, this has nothing to do with your donate or burn mockery. You've tried to change the subject to avoid the fact that your previous excuse has been wiped out.

    b) Non-believers make all sorts of excuses for not believing. Inability to be sure may lead to all sorts of internal angst. On the other hand, look at us. We are sure. So there is some kind of disconnect between the objection and reality.

    c) It's important to distinguish in this discussion between my presentation, which has simply been to present the objective truth of your sinfulness, the coming judgment, and your one option for escape (on the one hand) and the presentation of some of the other guys who have relied more on demonstration - proving the truthfulness of those objective facts.

    d) But your objection ends up sounding like the guy who recognizes that there are two ways to interpret the fire alarm in the office building: (1) a helpful alarm as to the objective fact of a fire in the building and (2) as part of scheme to get everyone outside so the building can be robbed. "How can you be sure?" either way? Yet, I think you would not be so irrational in real life as to be stuck in agnostic indecision in the elevator lobby of the building.

    Turretinfan said (previously):
    "All who turn to God, repenting of their sins and trusting in Christ alone for salvation will be saved - not only those from my denomination"

    Peter: "Theological experts disagree with you."

    a) ok.

    b) so what?

    Peter: "Pope said there is no salvation outside the (Catholic) Church. Protestants think Catholic Church is apostatite. Are Mormons and JW going to heaven? I just attended an Anglican speech and they told me that Catholics do go to hell. So how are you so sure??"

    a) I wonder whether this is a serious question, given the previous mockery.

    b) If it is not, there's really no point to your reading the answer. You need to take this seriously and not try to find excuses not to believe on Jesus Christ.

    c) I am sure because that is the Gospel message. It is presented in Scripture, but must be believed by faith. Since I have faith, I know that my Redeemer lives and that I will live with Him.

    Turretinfan said (previously): "your mocking tone seems to suggest that you feel you can pass moral judgment on the God of the Bible"

    Peter: "I more like pass the judgment on intolerant people who follow a particular holy book and go stoning kids, non-virgins, gays, unbelievers, witches, sorcerers, Sabbath breakers, graven image makers... and claim that that is the will of loving, mercyful God."

    a) I make no excuse for the phoney portrayals of God as some sort of omni-benevolent Santa Claus. You know that if the God of Scriptures exists, he's not like that. I know that since He exists, he's not like that.

    b) Why should "tolerance" be a moral positive, such that you'd pass judgment on intolerant people? Why should moral people tolerate immorality? That seems fundamentally inconsistent to me. Even those who adopt "tolerance" as a moral compass are normally intolerant of those who disagree with them on that point.

    c) But of course, we didn't write the Bible, it is the word of God. We adopt its morality, and we are "intolerant" (if you will) because Scriptures teach that "intolerance." We have divine revelation of morality as our foundation for our views. What's the alternative? People picking whatever morality they like? That's intuitively absurd. We recognize intuitively that morality is an objective reality, via our consciences.

    -TurretinFan

    ReplyDelete
  28. Turretinfan said:
    ["Theological experts disagree with you."]
    a) ok.
    b) so what?

    You are sure that you are right and your fellow Christians are sure you are wrong. Just and observation...


    Turretinfan said:
    "Non-believers make all sorts of excuses for not believing. Inability to be sure may lead to all sorts of internal angst. On the other hand, look at us. We are sure. So there is some kind of disconnect between the objection and reality."

    Are you serious? You are sure and your fellow believers are sure you are wrong. About the "excuse" and "angst"; I don't think you have met many atheists.


    Turretinfan said:
    "Why should moral people tolerate immorality?"

    I bet your behaviour is "moral" were people with different worldview are "immoral".


    Turretinfan said:
    "But of course, we didn't write the Bible, it is the word of God. We adopt its morality, and we are "intolerant" (if you will) because Scriptures teach that "intolerance." We have divine revelation of morality as our foundation for our views."

    People like you scare me. People like you read the Bible/Quran and claim that God demands your to kill XXXX type of people who do confirm to your type of "morals". It is time to get rid of that type of superstitions and move on.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Paul Manata said...
    "Your point [infine number of religious possibilities to "find" the salvation...] is simply a pedantic one which no serious philosopher that I am familiar with takes seriously."

    No need to claim serious philosophers and your friend Martin disagree. Just point out to me where I made a logical fallacy or mistake. I still claim that you can not discard currently unknown religions/cults as not to be taken seriously. Do your philosopher friends discard ideas as not serious *before* they investigate them?


    Paul Manata said...
    "I also note you didn't respond to my practical point about debates and two options on the table."

    Sorry I could not get to all of your point, I was also responding to two other people on this thread.
    I can see the that atheists sometimes "act like they can defend *atheism* by pointing out the possibility of other *theisms*.". Atheists see that theist or even Christians can not agree on the nature of God or most issues in their own religion yet theist claim to "know" God. Confusing..


    Paul Manata said...
    "But surely in practical matters, you can see the value in this."

    I do. By not defending a position, but attacking somebody else's help to steer direction of the conversation to the more comfortable position.


    Paul Manata said...
    "In the real world, everyone knows the options are limited."

    I disagree. Many people even believe mutually exlusive things. What are these things that you claim limit our belief options?


    Paul Manata said...
    "I also found the specific rebuttals to the whole 4th - 21st century thing to land on the mark."

    I guess we have to disagree with that one. So many killing were made in the name of Jesus...


    I'll put Martin's "The Improbability of God" on my to read list. I don't want to argue against/for it before I read the book. Thanks for the tip.

    ReplyDelete
  30. PETER SAID:

    “Less people believe in a holy book which states that non-believers in their God(s) should be killed, better chances I have to survive. One less potential suicide bombers trying to find a short cut to heaven...”

    That’s irrelevant to your original objection on two grounds:

    i) Your personal chances of survival are irrelevant to whether God is the source of morality. Would you argue for the truth or falsity of evolution based on your personal chances of survival?

    ii) In your original objection you were alluding to the OT. Now you’re alluding to the Koran (via Muslim suicide bombers).

    Newsflash: I’m not Muslim. The Koran isn’t my holy book. In my book you don’t get to heaven by killing the infidel. Try again.

    When you can’t stick to your own arguments, you’re admitting that you don’t believe your own arguments. And if you can’t take your own arguments seriously, why should anyone else?

    “OK, if You refuted it (why many times) then it is refuted.”

    I’ve addressed it on several occasions because the objection crops up repeatedly.

    “BTW what was the solution (link?)”

    Here are a couple of treatments—one by me, one by someone else:

    http://triablogue.blogspot.com/2006/07/euthyphro-dilemma.html

    http://www.frame-poythress.org/frame_articles/1993Euthyphro.htm

    “Who got this Joseph Smith, Mohammed,...”

    Do you really think Christians have no reply to the prophetic pretensions of Joseph Smith? Mormonism can be falsified on many grounds, both internally and externally. Try consulting the standard apologetic literature.

    “Once you come back to Allah and accept Him as your God you will realise He is the only true God.”

    i) Do you think these flip replies make your case look good? It makes you look like a shallow, overconfident atheist who thought he could disprove the Christian faith in three easy steps, after memorizing a few one-liners from Dawkins or Sam Harris. Then, when you discover that Christianity isn’t such a pushover, you have nothing to fall back on except for your cutesy, transparent evasive maneuvers.

    ii) Your comeback is irrelevant to the fact that Muhammad backed himself into a corner. He’s a false prophet by his own criterion, because he himself pointed to the Bible as a confirmation of his message.

    “Paul Manata (and Steve), I like your standard apologist approach that rather than defending the Christian argument you rather attack non-Christian view. I guess it is good way to try to move from the subject in hand, so I'll bite just a little bit.”

    Your objections are laden with unspoken assumptions that you need to defend. You have your own burden of proof to discharge.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Paul Manata said: "Your point [infine number of religious possibilities to "find" the salvation...] is simply a pedantic one which no serious philosopher that I am familiar with takes seriously."

    Peter said: No need to claim serious philosophers and your friend Martin disagree. Just point out to me where I made a logical fallacy or mistake. I still claim that you can not discard currently unknown religions/cults as not to be taken seriously. Do your philosopher friends discard ideas as not serious *before* they investigate them?

    My reply: Okay, if you take he flying spaghetti monster worldview seriously, then I guess you have a point.

    When I read apologetics and atheologetic books, seems to me most are agreed that the serious options up for debate is limited.

    "Atheists see that theist or even Christians can not agree on the nature of God or most issues in their own religion yet theist claim to "know" God. Confusing.."

    i) This cuts against your above line of attack.

    Of course if there are an *infinite* number of positions, that are all mutally exclusive, then they, by definition, disagree with each other.

    Why would this be evidence, at all? Surely this is just a *consequence* of your "infinite worldview" point, no?

    Moreover, the claim is misleading. It's not as if every single theist disagrees about the nature of God. There are a few million Christians who agree that God is one in essence three in person. That he is creator. That he is loving, just, good, omniscient, omnipotent, etc. And, if you don't buy this, there are at least thousands who believe like me.

    Furthermore, this line of attack is also at odds with your approach here. You made a comment about proving God. Steve made a comment about your shoddy worldview. You then said, "I love how you guys do apologetics, change the subject and attack." So, let's follow this out: theists critique atheism, and then atheists say: "But there are other theistic worldviews out there." That (a) changes the subject like you said ought not be done and (b) doesn't help out *atheism* in the slightest.

    You're being an intellectual hypocrite.

    ii) Physicists can't agree on many things, but claim to know physics. Confusing..

    iii) Evolutionists cannot agree on many things, but claim to know how we came about. Confusing..

    Paul Manata said: "But surely in practical matters, you can see the value in this."

    Peter said: I do. By not defending a position, but attacking somebody else's help to steer direction of the conversation to the more comfortable position.

    My reply: Well, that's not what anyone else in the world thinks is practical. What is practical is not debating your infinite set of possible worldviews. In a debate, the opponents act as if their position are the only two on the table, for that time.

    I also did defend my position, so this comment is false, too.

    My point is, which you don't seem to want to grant, and so that's fine, we can drop it, is this:

    I don't even see how the infinite number of worldviews is even intelligible since it could never be shown, and, I doubt once you got into the hundred thousands you'd have any *relevant* differences, thus making them *variations* of previous ones. There's also no guarantee that they will be logically possible or consistent. Thus they would not be a possible worldview. I personally doubt you could come up with 5 thousand religions. Not as easy as you think.

    But, let's grant that it is intelligible. No one acts that way. Almost every apologetic or atheological book deals with the main competators. An empirical study of man's religions reveals that there are just a handful of serious competators (hint: people usually don't take things like Heavens Gate as a player in the game, if you do, whatever...). These are the options most are prepared to grant. So, the options are limited. By refuting some, you make your more probable.

    Moreover, in debates with atheists, *theism* is not an option. So, by critiquing atheism, you make *theism* more probable. On this I am correct. There are only two options. So, I'll fight it out with other theists, but you don't get to play anymore. Therefore, by critiquing atheism, you have made theism more probable. At that point, I'll show you how, one by one, Christianity is more superior to the others. Or, I will make arguments to the effect that only a made up religions (i.e., fristianity) could fit the bill. So the choice is between a religion with basis in history, or your made up worldviews.

    At the ned of the day, though, this project is ridiculous, and you know it. What all this "infinite" business boils down to is in trying to see how far man can run away from the true God. The holy one of Israel. The one who punishes sin. Knocks us off our pedastool. Demands and deserves full committment. So, if this helps you sleep at night for now, all the better. Might as well have fun while you can. But no infinite worldviews will save you. Will provide a cleft in the mountain to hide. God is infinite. God is the mountain.

    Paul Manata said: "I also found the specific rebuttals to the whole 4th - 21st century thing to land on the mark."

    Peter said: I guess we have to disagree with that one. So many killing were made in the name of Jesus...

    My reply: But once these assertions are analyzed, they turn out to be quite false.

    I've read the Dawkins et al on this, and find the counters sufficient. If you do not, perhaps you could specify where they are are wrong.

    Bottom line: atheism has killed more that Christainity.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Peter—

    Evolutions is "guided" but he nature/environment and purpose of most living things is to survive and pass on their genes to the next generation. Most theist/creationist argue that there some kind of "ultimate purpose" beyond the natural world, which may/may not be true, but I dont think you find evolutionist claiming that evolution is unguided. Readig his last comment Paul Manata seem to have refered to this kind of "ultimate purpose"

    What you are saying is incoherent. I don't mean that as an insult; just as an observation on the words you're using and what they mean in relationship to each other. If evolution is guided only by nature and the environment, then it is not guided in the sense that Paul was originally speaking of. Recall that he said (and I emphasize), "[...] given that your cognitive faculties (CF) were produced by random mutations over millions of years, in an unguided and purposeless process, why think their *function* is the production of true beliefs?"

    Paul is welcome to correct me if I'm wrong, but it certainly looks to me that he is referring here to teleology. Even if he weren't talking about proper function, that much would be obvious. But the fact that proper function is the context of his comment makes it even more clear: since our cognitive faculties, ex hypothesi are not designed—that is, since the process by which they arose was not directed toward any intended result, let alone the result of producing true beliefs—what reason is there to think that they do produce true beliefs?

    Quite plainly, evolution is not guided or purposeful in the sense that was being discussed. Yet you called Paul's statement a strawman and claimed that evolution is guided and purposeful in this way. That is, you are claiming that the evolutionary process which resulted in our cognitive faculties was intelligently directed toward the end goal of brains which produce true beliefs. That sounds like theistic evolution, which I'm sure from your other comments you don't endorse.

    But even if I accept your obvious equivocation and approach these words on your own terms, there are obviously problems. I can accept the appropriation of the word "guide" as regards the way in which evolution is influenced by natural occurrences (even though you do anthropomorphize nature rather ironically). But the word "purpose", even on your own terms and divorced from its original context, just doesn't make sense here. How is it the "purpose" of most living things to survive and pass on their genes? You are using teleological language about a process which its most qualified experts deny is in any way teleological. Purpose implies design; it implies a goal which is worked toward. Does a possum have a purpose? I'm sure it doesn't think so. Does the process which gave rise to said possum have a purpose? Patently not. It is mindless, and purpose implies a mind. So I take it that you are interpreting this purpose out of what is actually a purposeless system. You're imposing this alleged purpose on it. It sounds like you're the one presenting a strawman of evolutionary theory; not Paul.

    Of course, this also raises the difficult question for you: how did teleology come about in the first place, given that it's not intrinsic to evolution itself? How does purposelessness give rise to purpose? How does non-intelligence give rise to intelligence? How does amorality give rise to morality? All very problematic.

    Regards,
    Bnonn

    ReplyDelete
  33. steve said:
    "That’s irrelevant to your original objection on two grounds:
    i) Your personal chances of survival are irrelevant to whether God is the source of morality."

    I was arguing that my survaval chances depend on people *believing* the God is the source of moralily manifested in their holy books.


    steve said:
    "In your original objection you were alluding to the OT. Now you’re alluding to the Koran (via Muslim suicide bombers). Newsflash: I’m not Muslim"

    No. I was alluding to the Bible (According to some Christians OT is the word of God). And I hinted about Christian suicide bombers in Lebanon and abortion clinic bombings and shootings ...


    steve said:
    "“Who got this Joseph Smith...”
    Do you really think Christians have no reply to the prophetic pretensions of Joseph Smith?"

    I'm saying that Mormons claim to be Christians and if you read their standard literature they claim (like you) that they can falsify other Christians. But I digressed...


    steve said:
    "Your comeback is irrelevant to the fact that Muhammad backed himself into a corner. He’s a false prophet by his own criterion, because he himself pointed to the Bible as a confirmation of his message."

    Muslim theologians and scholars disagree with you here. I understand that in a short reply you can not point out in detail the inconsistencies in Islam. I was trying to make a point that all theist claim they got it right and everyone else is wrong (yes, I have argued this with Muslims and Mormons too)


    Thanks for the links for Euthypros dilemma. I'll read them soon.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Peter said: "I was arguing that my survaval chances depend on people *believing* the God is the source of moralily manifested in their holy books."

    My reply: Said at a time when mankind is more numerous, and long-living than ever before.

    Peter said: "And I hinted about Christian suicide bombers in Lebanon and abortion clinic bombings and shootings ..."

    My reply: Tamil Tigers, anyone? Non-religious marxists?

    And, read a scholar like David Livingstone Smith, and atheist who is far more sophisticated in pointing to the causes of war and violence (cf. The Most Dangerous Animal). He notes that it is something inherent in man. That wars, suicide bombers, rape, etc., would still continue even if religion was eradicated. At the same rate too. There would just be another excuse. So, that man is the problem is a rather Christian position, but Livinstone-Smith is an atheist.

    Peter said: "I'm saying that Mormons claim to be Christians and if you read their standard literature they claim (like you) that they can falsify other Christians. But I digressed..."

    My reply: Peter has the habit of pointing out that other people *claim* that X, and so that is a defeater for anything we say. Peter, the question isn't about "claims" *as such*, it is about *substantive* ones. For that, you'd need to read their books, our books, and come to a reasoned conclusion about whose "claims" can withstand internal or external criticism.

    Peter said: Muslim theologians and scholars disagree with you here. I understand that in a short reply you can not point out in detail the inconsistencies in Islam. I was trying to make a point that all theist claim they got it right and everyone else is wrong (yes, I have argued this with Muslims and Mormons too)

    My reply: So, what is the Muslim answer? Surely you know since you know they disagree. It is a *fact* that Islam claims to agree and follow in line with the OT and Gospels. Christian scriptures have been revealed by Allah.:

    2:136 Say ye: 'We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Ismail, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses, and Jesus, and that given to all prophets from their Lord: WE MAKE NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ONE AND ANOTHER OF THEM.
    3:3 He has revealed to you the Book with truth, verifying that which is before it, and He revealed the Tavrat and the Injeel aforetime, a guidance for the people, and He sent the Furqan.
    3:50 And a verifier of that which is before me of the Taurat and that I may allow you part of that which has been forbidden t you, and I have come to you with a sign from your Lord therefore be careful of (your duty to) Allah and obey me.
    3:65 O followers of the Book! why do you dispute about Ibrahim, when the Taurat and the Injeel were not revealed till after him; do you not then understand?
    3:93 All food was lawful to the children of Israel except that which Israel had forbidden to himself, before the Taurat was revealed. Say: Bring then the Taurat and read it, if you are truthful.
    4:163 We have sent thee inspiration, as We sent it to Noah and the Messengers after him: we sent inspiration to Abraham, Isma'il, Isaac, Jacob and the Tribes, to Jesus, Job, Jonah, Aaron, and solomon, and to David We gave the Psalms.
    5:44 Surely We revealed the Taurat in which was guidance and light; with it the prophets who submitted themselves (to Allah) judged (matters) for those who were Jews, and the masters of Divine knowledge and the doctors, because they were required to guard (part) of the Book of Allah, and they were witnesses thereof; therefore fear not the people and fear Me, and do not take a small price for My communications; and whoever did not judge by what Allah revealed, those are they that are the unbelievers. 5:45 And We prescribed to them in it that life is for life, and eye for eye, and nose for nose, and ear for ear, and tooth for tooth, and (that there is) reprisal in wounds; but he who foregoes it, it shall be an expiation for him; and whoever did not judge by what Allah revealed, those are they that are the unjust.
    5:46 And We sent after them in their footsteps Isa, son of Marium, verifying what was before him of the Taurat and We gave him the Injeel in which was guidance and light, and verifying what was before it of Taurat and a guidance and an admonition for those who guard (against evil). 5:47 And the followers of the Injeel should have judged by what Allah revealed in it; and whoever did not judge by what Allah revealed, those are they that are the transgressors. 5:48 And We have revealed to you the Book with the truth, verifying what is before it of the Book and a guardian over it, therefore judge between them by what Allah has revealed, and do not follow their low desires (to turn away) from the truth that has come to you; for every one of you did We appoint a law and a way, and if Allah had pleased He would have made you (all) a single people, but that He might try you in what He gave you, therefore strive with one another to hasten to virtuous deeds; to Allah is your return, of all (of you), so He will let you know that in which you differed;
    5:68 Say: O followers of the Book! you follow no good till you keep up the Taurat and the Injeel and that which is revealed to you from your Lord; and surely that which has been revealed to you from your Lord shall make many of them increase in inordinacy and unbelief; grieve not therefore for the unbelieving people.
    10:94 But if you are in doubt as to what We have revealed to you, ask those who read the Book before you; certainly the truth has come to you from your Lord, therefore you should not be of the disputers.

    In Deuteronomy 13:1-5 “Allah” tells us that if future revelation contradicts previous revelation, then it has not come from God. Now then, does the Qur’an contradict previous revelation? If it does, then according to the Qur’an’s own terms it cannot be what it claims to be. Let us now examine the Bible and the Qur'an.

    The Qur’an contradicts the Bible in many places. For example, we read In sura 28:9 that Moses is adopted by Pharaoh's wife and not by his daughter as is reported in Exodus 2:10. In sura 4:157 we read that Jesus was not crucified, obviously contradicting all four Gospels. In sura 19:35 we read that God would not beget a son which contradict many passages in the Bible (e.g., John 3:16). Sura 11:42-46 tells us that Noah's son drowned in the flood but Genesis 6: 7, 18 tells us that Noah's wife and sons were saved. Abraham was the son of Azar according to the Qur’an in Sura 6:74 and the son of Terah in according to the Bible in Genesis 11:27. And in sura 19:28-35 we read that Marium, sister of Old Testament Aaron, is Jesus’ mother!

    But perhaps the Christians have changed their Bible?

    An embarrassing sura for the Muslim is sura 10:94.. In this sura we read: "But if you are in doubt as to what We have revealed to you, ask those who read the Book before you; certainly the truth has come to you from your Lord, therefore you should not be of the disputers.” What we have here, then, is Muhammad telling people who doubted the veracity of his teachings to ask those who had the book before him (Jews and Christians) if what he was teaching was true. The problem here is that since the texts we have today are substantially the same as the manuscripts circulating in Muhammad's day, we would have Muhammad directing questioners to a corrupted text! If the Bible had been corrupted then why would Muhammad send his followers to verify his teachings from a corrupted text? This sura, then, testifies to an uncorrupted Bible. This is not some isolated text, either. The Qur'an claims "Before thee, also, the apostles We sent were but men, to whom We granted inspiration: If ye realize this not, ask of those who posses the message (sura 21:7)." But those who “possessed the message” back then just happened “to posses” the same “message” that we posses today. There is simply not one shred of evidence testifying that a Bible completely foreign to the Bible we posses today was the Bible used by Christians in Muhammad’s day.

    And this is just some of my basic apologetic arguments against Islam.

    You need to quit worrying about people's *claims* and use the brain God gave you to see whose claims are better, more defensible, more substantive, etc.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Dominic Bnonn Tennant,

    I note your critisim about my usage of "un/guided" and "purpose/less" because the asymmetric meaning. I claimed "...were produced by random mutations over millions of years, in an unguided and purposeless process" is a stawman because you will not find evolutionst advocating that, so there is the point of refuting the claim.


    Dominic Bnonn Tennant said...
    "you are claiming that the evolutionary process which resulted in our cognitive faculties was intelligently directed toward the end goal of brains which produce true beliefs."

    At least I tried to argue that there was no intelligent director, there is no "end goal" and beliefs that help to survive will survive true or not.


    Dominic Bnonn Tennant said...
    "How does amorality give rise to morality?"

    Once an organism has behaviour options evolutions will shape the behaviour towards behaviour types that help to survive. Morality (correct behaviour) arises by default.


    Dominic Bnonn Tennant said...
    How does non-intelligence give rise to intelligence?

    It might have have a survival advantage. Note that there might be a large gray are between non-intelligence and intelligence. Sometimes animals even loose their brain if that is an advange.


    Dominic Bnonn Tennant said...
    How does purposelessness give rise to purpose?

    Life might have intrinsic subjective value which gives a possibility to purpose.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Peter, I'd rather not interact with the whole range of possible arguments available under the question of where morality and intelligence come from; but I am rather curious about this statement you made:

    Life might have intrinsic subjective value which gives a possibility to purpose.

    What is "subjective value" in an evolutionary framework? What does the word "subjective" even mean when applied to a complex chemical system? Similarly with "value". In a universe which does not contain anything except physical processes and events, to which the term "value" cannot be applied, what does this term mean? What aspect of reality does it reflect?

    Regards,
    Bnonn

    ReplyDelete
  37. Paul Manata said:
    "Of course if there are an *infinite* number of positions, that are all mutally exclusive, then they, by definition, disagree with each other. Why would this be evidence, at all? ... the claim is misleading. It's not as if every single theist disagrees about the nature of God."

    My point was that people (can) believe mutually exclusive positions. The possibilities of "the correct way to salvation" or "nature of God" are infinitive. I does not matter if you or your friends agree.


    Paul Manata said:
    "You're being an intellectual hypocrite"

    Calm down. You are more convincing without ad hominem.


    Paul Manata said:
    "ii) Physicists can't agree on many things, but claim to know physics. Confusing..
    iii) Evolutionists cannot agree on many things, but claim to know how we came about. Confusing.."

    Red Herring. Physicists and evolutionst agree on many core things which can be empirically verified, but cutting edge research produces a lot of debates. Theist can not agree on any core issues and what about the empirical evidence?


    Paul Manata said:
    "I personally doubt you could come up with 5 thousand religions."

    I talked to guy who had studied religions (he refused to call them cults) in Australia (21M people) and he stated that there are about 150 unique non-main stream religions/cults (excluding indigenous religions) in Australia. If that is the ball park density of religions in the world "5 thousand religions" is a very low figure.


    Paul Manata said:
    "atheism has killed more that Christainity"

    That is just absurd. For example how many people were killed by atheist in the 17th century?


    Paul Manata said:
    Tamil Tigers, anyone? Non-religious marxists?

    So? Tamil Tigers are advancing and motivated by Tamil/Marxism cause, not non-religious cause. Christian suicide bombers are motivated by the Christian leaders and the Bible.


    Paul Manata said:
    "wars, suicide bombers, rape, etc., would still continue even if religion was eradicated. At the same rate too."

    That might be true, but them we need to address the other problems that also cause violence. Just because there are other causes it does not mean we should not address any of them.


    Paul Manata said:
    "Peter has the habit of pointing out that other people *claim* that X, and so that is a defeater for anything we say. Peter, the question isn't about "claims" *as such*, it is about *substantive* ones. For that, you'd need to read their books, our books, and come to a reasoned conclusion about whose "claims" can withstand internal or external criticism."

    yes, maybe I should stop pointing out the inconsist claims theist make and just sit back and enjoy the debates. And I did read some of their and your books and came to a conclusion.

    ReplyDelete
  38. "My point was that people (can) believe mutually exclusive positions. The possibilities of "the correct way to salvation" or "nature of God" are infinitive. I does not matter if you or your friends agree."

    Addressed and rebutted.

    At any rate, since we do not *know* of an *infinite* amount of religions, then our *knowledge* is limited, and so refuting specific examples raises the *epistemic* probability of non-refuted ones.

    Paul Manata said: "You're being an intellectual hypocrite"

    Peter said: Calm down. You are more convincing without ad hominem.

    My reply: That wasn't a fallacious ad hominem. I was pointing out what I took to be an objective fact. That is, you hold people to a different intellectual standard than you hold yourself to.

    Peter said: Red Herring. Physicists and evolutionst agree on many core things which can be empirically verified, but cutting edge research produces a lot of debates. Theist can not agree on any core issues and what about the empirical evidence?

    My reply: No, your argument is the red herring. Steve Hays, myself, and every team member on this blog all agree on "core issues." Me and my pastor and elders agree on all the "core issues." My and the local seminary profs here all agree on "the core issues."

    And, your statement is just plain ignorant if you think all physicists agree on core issues. I'm not sure you've read very far into this field. Pick up a Philosophy of Physics book from amazon. Sklar's a good choice. There's other's too.

    Peter said: "That is just absurd. For example how many people were killed by atheist in the 17th century?

    My reply: Fallacy of composition?

    Moreover, let's say that from the 1st century (that humans existed) to the 19 century, theists killed 1,000 people each century and atheists killed zero. Then say in the 20th century atheists killed 1 billion people. Atheists would have killed more. So, your question is stupid. An observation, not an ad hominem argument.

    Paul Manata said: Tamil Tigers, anyone? Non-religious marxists?

    Peter said: So? Tamil Tigers are advancing and motivated by Tamil/Marxism cause, not non-religious cause. Christian suicide bombers are motivated by the Christian leaders and the Bible.

    My reply: You must have a broad definition of religion. The marxist cause is non-religious. In fact, it is atheistic. As indeed many of the Tamil Tigers are. Are you saying that the atheist Tamil Tigers are motivated by god belief?

    Paul Manata said: "wars, suicide bombers, rape, etc., would still continue even if religion was eradicated. At the same rate too."

    Peter said: That might be true, but them we need to address the other problems that also cause violence. Just because there are other causes it does not mean we should not address any of them.

    My reply: This misses the point, obviously. As the scholars in the field point out, "religion" isn't "the cause" of all the evil.

    If religion were gone, you'd still have the same chances of survival.

    This point is made by scholars like Livingstone-Smith (not hacks like Dawkins).

    So, this undercuts your point. I've been keeping up with the discussion. Pity you haven't.

    Peter said: yes, maybe I should stop pointing out the inconsist claims theist make and just sit back and enjoy the debates. And I did read some of their and your books and came to a conclusion.

    My reply: But theists obviously make inconsistent claims since they believe in different gods, etc.

    But this all rather misses my point (a past time I see you're find of (again, an observation and not an ad hominem argument).

    My point is that you can't very well defeat our arguments by pointing out that another religion *claims* this or that.

    You should to the homework and look into the argument. But, you just admitted that you're too lazy to do that.

    That's fine. This is America.

    But just don't come in spewing your comparative religion defeaters if you're not going to bother studying the subject.

    I think this convo has went its course, and you're claims are growing increasingly uninteresting. So I'll drop out and let you have the last word.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Dominic Bnonn Tennant said:
    "What is "subjective value" in an evolutionary framework? What does the word "subjective" even mean when applied to a complex chemical system? Similarly with "value"."

    Individuals see *their* life (complex chemical system) valuable to *them* (it is worth looking for food and running from the danger). More developped animals can climb up the Maslow's hierarchy of needs and see new needs as value to them. Different needs which are seen valuable by an individual can create a purpose.


    Paul Manata said:
    "I think this convo has went its course."

    I agree. When people claim that people of their particular faith in their geographic area agree on "core issue" of their religion is the same as physicists agreeing on conservation laws, law of thermodynamics or general relativity, it might be the time to move on.

    Anyways, thanks for mentioning the EAAN argument and Troy Nunley's work on that.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Individuals see *their* life (complex chemical system) valuable to *them* (it is worth looking for food and running from the danger). More developped animals can climb up the Maslow's hierarchy of needs and see new needs as value to them. Different needs which are seen valuable by an individual can create a purpose.

    Peter, you've presupposed the idea of value to begin with. Where does it come from? So far, you're just begging the question.

    Regards,
    Bnonn

    ReplyDelete
  41. Peter, it's uaually considered good form to not end lying or misrepresenting your opponent:

    "I agree. When people claim that people of their particular faith in their geographic area agree on "core issue" of their religion is the same as physicists agreeing on conservation laws, law of thermodynamics or general relativity, it might be the time to move on."

    i) I referred you to some books where you could verify my claim.

    ii) Every christian theist *in the world* in my broad camp (holding to, say, WCF, LBC, 3-forms of unity, etc) holds the same *core* beliefs I do.

    Your claim was:

    "Theist can not agree on any core issues and what about the empirical evidence"

    So, let's make this into a syllogism:

    1) No theist can agree with another on any core issue.

    2) Paul Manata and Steve Hays are theists.

    3) Therefore, they do not agree on any core issue.

    But this is *false.*

    Moreover, since you said "any" core issue, it is even *more* false. *Every* thiest believes in a "God." That is a core issue. Even if we disagreed on *every other core issue* we *still* would false your claim that we can't agree on *any* core issue.

    So, go graciously instead of dishonestly.

    P.S. Nunley's work is recent. I'd read much of the background literature before hitting that otherwise you'll be lost.

    ReplyDelete
  42. P.P.S.

    Physics is the science of matter and its motion,as well as space and time. It uses concepts such as energy, force, mass, and charge.

    Peter is just expressing his ignorance when he thinks physicists agree on these "core" issues. Physictss disagree about the nature of matter, space, and time. Some physicists hold to an A theory of time, some to a B theory. Of course what "mater" is is one of the most hotly debated questions. Physicists have disparate views.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Paul Manata said:
    "Peter is just expressing his ignorance when he thinks physicists agree on these "core" issues."

    Theologian Paul tells physicists Peter that he is ignorant about what physicists agree on. That kind of sums up this thread.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Peter said...
    Paul Manata said:
    "Peter is just expressing his ignorance when he thinks physicists agree on these "core" issues."

    Theologian Paul tells physicists Peter that he is ignorant about what physicists agree on. That kind of sums up this thread.

    6/05/2008 5:20 PM

    ***************

    i) If I cannot tell you that physicists disagree because I am not a physicist, then same for you and your claims about theists, and more specifically, Christian theists. Self-excepting fallacy.

    ii) *I* didn't just tell you, I referred you to books and I also made an *argument* which is *valid* and *sound* irregardless of my circumstances. Circumatantial ad hominem fallacy.

    Btw, the argument went like this:

    1) Matter, time and space are core elements of physics.

    2) Physicists disagree about these things, e.g., some are a-theorists some are b-theorists.

    3) Therefore physicsts disagree on "core elements" in their field.

    iii) What "sums up this thread" is your constant use of poor reasoning skills.

    Now, I think I've refuted every single argument you've put up here, and thus also refuted your naked assertions about how I do apologetics, and have also shown you to be an intellectual hypocrite, so feel free to come back with better material.

    Didn't you say you had some books to read . . .

    ReplyDelete
  45. You seem to resort to name calling and baseless fallacy assertion, so lets look at your fallacy claims:


    Paul Manata said:
    "If I cannot tell you that physicists disagree because I am not a physicist, then same for you and your claims about theists, and more specifically, Christian theists. Self-excepting fallacy."

    It is not Self-excepting fallacy because I did not tell you that you "cannot tell" nor that I except myself for being wrong, I just pointed out funny side of it.


    Paul Manata said:
    Peter said: "That is just absurd. For example how many people were killed by atheist in the 17th century?
    My reply: Fallacy of composition?

    It is not Fallacy of composition because I did not claim that 17th result necessary gives a same result as 4th-20th century results. I asked you to start somewhere when you inially did not want to address the issue.


    Paul Manata said:
    "in fact, the very point I made is in lots of literature, literature, from atheists at that. You'll frequently here that refutations of various permutations of gods makes the case for atheism probabilistically higher. Perhaps these guys are guilty of these "fallacies" too"

    No fallacies here either, most atheist argues the questions it there a god or not?


    Peter said earlier:
    "When the possibilities go from a, b, c - ∞ your refuting one does not improve your changes"
    In which you agreed that you fell in to a common fallacy.


    Paul Manata said:
    Your argument undercuts Martin et al. and so I wonder what allows you to point out the "school boy" fallacies these guys are committing.

    No undercutting nor "school boy" fallacies there either. Martin argues about does God(s) exist or not (finite amount of options; 2) I discussed about infinite options of god type / path to salvation (infinite options).


    So much for your fallacy claims...

    ****************

    Paul Manata said:
    "I think I've refuted every single argument you've put up here"

    Oh, please. Did you even read this thread; for example:
    Then put forward theories where physicists disagree physicists agreeing on conservation laws, law of thermodynamics or general relativity. You stated that "Every christian theist *in the world* in my broad camp (holding to, say, WCF, LBC, 3-forms of unity, etc) holds the same *core* beliefs I do." So what, Hindus, Zeus followers and wiccas disagree with you on every issue. Fallacy of composition perhaps?
    You also claimed "atheism has killed more that Christainity" yet when challenged couple times you called fault.

    Anyways, interesting way how you do apologetics for Jesus.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Mr. Loftus,

    It is atheism that is irrational and delusional. I heartily recommend that Mr. Manata review this article on atheism which is located HERE as I think there is some interesting material against atheism that he may not be aware of.

    ReplyDelete