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Saturday, June 18, 2005

Why are you an atheist ?

I don't want any of you to answer that. What a stupid question. Asking why someone is an atheist is about as intelligent as asking why he's a round-earther, or why he thinks the sky is blue. Because we recognize the obvious !

Do we really choose to know anything ? Now, I am perhaps the stongest advocate of compatibilism you'll find, but in this case, in the sense people usually mean that, I don't choose to be an atheist any more than I choose the facts of reality. In essence, if truth is a combination of fact and method, then there is really nothing to choose here. Is there ?

We must reject any idea of description of people's beliefs as some kind of window to higher truths. If people disagree, then it means that people are irrational, not that there is a fundamental problem with rational thought. Why do we automatically assume that people are rational when we talk about what is mere preference and belief ? Derek, I'm looking at you man.

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18 Comments:

At 6/18/2005 8:46 AM, Blogger vjack declaimed...

One of the first lessons any student encounters in introductory science courses involves different sources of knowledge. Time and time again, I am surprised at the number of students who base their beliefs about the world solely on authority (e.g., parents, church, etc.). I am becomming convinced that ignorance really is bliss.

 
At 6/18/2005 9:59 AM, Blogger Mr. Neil declaimed...

Basically, I identified a redundancy in concept of God creating the universe.

Around eight or nine, it occurred to me how vacuous this assertion was, in that there was no evidence to even suggest that such a being exists, and that the god concept really didn't solve anything. In fact, it made it worse.

My thinking was that whether God exists or not, something exists without creation. Christians often say, "The universe can't create itself.", to which I replay, "Neither can a god."

The only difference between the universe and God, though, is that the universe is an uncreated non-consciousness, while God is an uncreated consciousness. It would seem to me that if the creator can exist without creation, then the necessity for the creator begs the question.

So I took a redundancy and reduced it to a single statement: "The universe exists." I may not know where it came from or why it exists, but it beat attributing it to ghost, whose own existence would be even more problematic. At least know that the universe exists.

 
At 6/18/2005 10:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

What a foolish post

 
At 6/18/2005 11:13 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Franc asks: "if truth is a combination of fact and method, then there is really nothing to choose here. Is there ?"

Yes, there is still a choice to be made. We choose either to acknowledge and embrace the truth, or to evade it. Religion is simply the system of evading truth, while reason eradicates all evasion.

As for why I'm an atheist, I'm just being honest: I don't think there are any gods for the very same reason I don't think there are any square circles. I am certain that there are no square circles, and likewise I am certain that there are no gods. Why this bothers some people is what's interesting.

 
At 6/18/2005 11:30 AM, Blogger Mr. Neil declaimed...

I love being zinged by the anonymous.

 
At 6/18/2005 12:30 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"We choose either to acknowledge and embrace the truth, or to evade it."

That is true. But the choice to evade the truth itself, is it really a choice ?

 
At 6/18/2005 12:50 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Franc: "But the choice to evade the truth itself, is it really a choice ?"

Yes.

 
At 6/18/2005 2:23 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

I see your point, but epistemically, though, I don't think it really is. I don't choose the fact that evasion is evil either.

 
At 6/18/2005 4:36 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Franc: "I see your point, but epistemically, though, I don't think it really is."

I'm not sure what you're saying. Perhaps you're saying this:

1) The act of evading the truth is something one can choose, but

2) the fact that one would have to choose to evade the truth, is not itself a choice (i.e., it's a fact independent of our choices).

If that's what you mean, then yes, I agree. Was I misreading you earlier?

Franc: "I don't choose the fact that evasion is evil either."

No, I don't think this is something one chooses to be the case, either. If something is harmful for man's life, it is harmful whether anyone wants it that way or not (i.e., not open to choice). Our choices govern which actions we will take, not what conditions make our lives possible.

 
At 6/18/2005 10:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

So Franc, why are you an atheist again?

 
At 6/18/2005 11:32 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Anon: "So Franc, why are you an atheist again?"

Why would you want to know this?

 
At 6/19/2005 1:25 AM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

That was my whole point. There is no "why". No one should answer it.

 
At 6/19/2005 11:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

I know, that's why I asked it! Franc, allow me to spring board off your latest post: Atheist are connection seeing retards.

 
At 6/19/2005 11:33 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Asking "Why are you an atheist?" is essentially no different from asking "Why don't you think the universe is a cartoon?"

 
At 6/19/2005 11:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

so? my point was to ask him that after he just said he doesn't like when people ask him that. get it, Bob?

 
At 6/20/2005 11:37 AM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

anonymous,

Hopefully I can help you out. Franc is an atheist because he recognizes reality.

So anonymous, why are you a blue-sky-ist?

 
At 6/20/2005 12:54 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"Franc is an atheist because he recognizes reality."

I would agree with you, but what does it really mean to "recognize reality", if you think about it ?

 
At 6/24/2005 3:00 PM, Blogger Toad734 declaimed...

I would say I am more of an Agnostic.

 

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