This is What I Would Need in Order to Believe

by cofty 496 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • konceptual99
    konceptual99

    The sad thing is that for years I would have dismissed the questions raised by the OP as the result of not having an accurate knowledge of The Truth. I would have had a wry smile that Christendom could not answer these things yet here I was in possession of the full answers.

    As the veil has been lifted it is clear that these questions can only be answered by theists by resorting to the supernatural, by claiming that the divine has answers we cannot grasp - a position I now totally reject.

    When I speak about these things with my wife now I can sense the pity that somehow I have become blinded by the secular and fallen into a darkness where I can no longer see the blindingly obvious. When mysticism trumps logic then there can be no reasoning.

  • John_Mann
    John_Mann
    The OP stands unanswered.

    You can say you don't agree with my answers but you can't say your OP was not answered. This is denial.

    Actually you are running away from several questions (and answers) I did directly to you.


    3 days ago

    I'd already answered them but let's do it again.

    1. The evidence would not show beyond all doubt that the diversity of life rested on millions of years of relentless competition, death and destruction. Life would not have been all but wiped out in mass extinctions at least five times in its history.

    Why not? CC accepts the ToE and this theory implies death and destruction.

    This is how the physical world works. Catholic faith is all about the salvation of the metaphysical soul.

    2. The predominant economy in the natural world would not be parasitic and predatory. The world really would show the loving qualities of its maker without having to ignore the majority of the facts.

    Our physical bodies and some features of our minds came to existence through natural laws.

    Only our immortal soul was made to be an image of God.

    3.The bible really would contain prophecies that could be verified using objective historical evidence. It wouldn't be necessary to rip verses out of context and interpret ambiguous phrases to try to make details fit post hoc..

    There's historical evidence that the Gospels were written before the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem.

    In these Gospels its destruction was prophecised by Jesus to be occuring during a biblical generation (40 years).

    4.The bible would contain useful information that people could not have known at the time it was written.

    This is a very subjective statement.

    But if you apply statistics then the majority of people says the opposite of this statement. There's statistical evidence against this subjective statement.

    5.The ethics of scripture would be enlightening and uplifting without exception. It would condemn things like slavery unambiguously and champion the rights and equality of women. It would not advocate moral evils that need to be explained away with appeals to relativism and special pleading.

    This statement is based on Sola Scriptura and is very subjective too.


    6.Miracles would really happen - even now in the age of CCTV, smart phones and scientific enquiry. It would require stubbornness rather than healthy skepticism to deny them.

    I only accept the Catholic definition of miracle. I believe miracles only happen in a Catholic context. Here are some of them:

    - Our Lady of Fatima ( the miracle of the sun)

    - Our Lady of Zeitoun

    - the Eucharist miracles of Buenos Aires and Lanciano.


    7.Natural disasters would not kill millions of earth's inhabitants. The planet would not be designed to destroy life.

    Natural disasters are inevitable consequences of natural laws. And natural laws are necessary in a world that harbors free-willed agents limited in a physical world.


    8.Prayers would get answered reliably. Confirmation bias would not be necessary. The prayers of believers would have real and observable power.

    This is a very subjective statement.

    But if you apply statistics then the majority of people says the opposite of this statement. There's statistical evidence against this subjective statement.


    9.There is so much more detail I could add to this, but in summary it would be more difficult to reject the claims of christianity than to accept them. It is not too much to expect that this should be so.

    (...)

    I want to add that there's not a single logical argument to Atheism and Scientism. Both positions are just one single axiom. This is barely a position...

    Nothing, nihil...

  • John_Mann
    John_Mann
    Here is the basic core of the disagreement.
    John M believes that faith is a virtue and requests for evidence are anathema to faith.

    This is an absurd. This is not my position.

    Faith is more than a virtue, is a necessity. You also need pure faith to accept the axioms of the scientific method, for example. Even Satan has faith.

    Do you know how the scientific method was built?

    You're the one who demands scientific evidence to a metaphysical discussion. And you think you can deny the existence of God using the scientific method.

    He dismisses all challenges to his doctrines by calling them metaphysical and therefore off limits for rational inquiry.

    God is a metaphysical entity. But metaphysics is accessible to rational inquiry.

    Of course like all theists he will take any shred of evidence available.

    What kind of evidence do you mean?

    Even if we took the ontological argument seriously and accepted John's personal vision as authentic

    The St. Anselm's ontological argument it's not only accepted as authentic by myself but it's accepted as formal logic by everyone in every university in the whole wide world. There's no place for "even if" in this case.

    Do you know what formal logic is? I'm not sure if you know logic at all...

    it would not begin to answer any of the challenges of the OP.

    The very ontological argument is a key to every question you asked in the OP.

    The OP simply observes that in many ways the world doesn't actually look the way Christians pretend it does.

    I've demonstrated by formal logic that this world is exactly what Christianity teaches. It's the best world possible. It's only temporarily broken.

    Proposing other lines of evidence for God doesn't meet the challenge.

    Why not? Because your Scientism cult prevents you from other forms of human knowledge?

    Attacking atheism as a worldview doesn't either.

    Why? Because Atheism and Scientism are your golden calf?

    Are you in denial or just dissimulating about your position of Scientism? Just like the Brahma Kumaris dissimulate their position for some obscure purpose?

    Are you even aware of being a scientismIST?

  • cofty
    cofty
    CC accepts the ToE and this theory implies death and destruction. - J_M

    Yes. You have not answered to question, you have restated it. If god chose to bring the present physical world into being through this process then he is not a god of love. He made a world perfectly designed to maximise suffering. Not just a world that inevitably includes some physical suffering - a world that maximises it.

    He is also not the wonderful intelligent designer christians claim he is. 99% of all the species that ever existed failed. They are extinct. Their last representatives died out.

    Five times in the history of life almost all of life was violently wiped out through catastrophic events. These are not the actions of the same god who claims to care about the death of every sparrow.

    You have not even started to deal with these first two points (which you have conflated into one point)

    This is how the physical world works. Catholic faith is all about the salvation of the metaphysical soul.

    That doesn't work. You asserted earlier that your god cares about physical suffering. He clearly doesn't.

    Our physical bodies and some features of our minds came to existence through natural laws. Only our immortal soul was made to be an image of God.

    But according to christians god invented those natural laws from scratch. The predominance of predators and parasites was god's idea. The natural world reflects the nature of the creator. He could have made the world any way he wished. He designed it to maximise pain.

    You are so obsessed by the soul you are willing to justify any physical suffering aren't you?

    There's historical evidence that the Gospels were written before the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem.
    Many scholars disagree but even so, predicting that the Roman's patience would soon run out with the Jews is not impressive at all. When we read those prophecies in detail it is clear you have to cherry-pick a couple of phrases to get anything useful for your case. That is always the case with bible prophecy.
    This is a very subjective statement. But if you apply statistics then the majority of people says the opposite of this statement. There's statistical evidence against this subjective statement.

    What statistics are you referring to? I am making a simple observation that if god revealed anything through the bible it is reasonable to expect some evidence of that when you read the book. There is none.

    Personally I would have hinted at germ theory of disease. Or mentioned the fact that the earth and other planets revolve around the sun. Something simple but interesting and way ahead of its time.

    I was going to carry on but you get the picture.

    All your work is ahead of you. This is a thread where I am very happy with the OP and very disappointed with the quality of the conversation that followed.

    Nobody - absolutely nobody - cares about you Roman Catholic dogma. It is totally irrelevant to challenge.


  • John_Mann
    John_Mann
    Yes. You have not answered to question, you have restated it.
    If god chose to bring the present physical world into being through this process then he is not a god of love.

    This world is His only option. Because God must always choose (in situations of if-then) the best option possible. And the best option is the one that best reveals His love.

    The creation of the metaphysical and physical world was an act of pure love. God don't create out of need but from excess of love.

    He made a world perfectly designed to maximise suffering.

    Not just a world that inevitably includes some physical suffering - a world that maximises it.

    Do you really believe in this statement?

    Even in an atheistic scenario, do you think this world maximize suffering?

    I don't agree with this statement even in an atheistic interpretation.

  • cofty
    cofty
    The best option is the one that best reveals His love

    So why is the physical world perfectly designed to maximise suffering?

    24 pages of avoiding the question!

    Do you really believe in this statement?
    Yes. If you don't agree then you need to learn more about the last 3 billion years of the history of life.
  • John_Mann
    John_Mann
    He is also not the wonderful intelligent designer christians claim he is. 99% of all the species that ever existed failed. They are extinct. Their last representatives died out.

    I'm not a creationist. I don't believe evolution is guided (especially non human evolution).

    Five times in the history of life almost all of life was violently wiped out through catastrophic events. These are not the actions of the same god who claims to care about the death of every sparrow.

    Are you talking about non human animals? Non human animals doesn't perceive evil in any form.

    Why do you quote the Bible like a fundamentalist? Are you a Sola Scriptura Atheist? Do you quote single texts and think there's only one interpretation to it?

    You have not even started to deal with these first two points (which you have conflated into one point).

    Well recently you was saying that I haven't answered at all.

    Saying that I don't even started to deal means some progress

  • cofty
    cofty

    You quote the bible when it suits you. You might not be sola scriptura but you can't disown the bible whenever it doesn't work for you.

    The only theological assumptions I am making is that there is a god who made all things, who is the epitome of love and goodness, who is active in the world and who desires a relationship with humans.

    For the nine reasons I gave in my OP I find this story totally unconvincing.

    99% of what you have written in the last 24 pages misses this simple point.

  • John_Mann
    John_Mann
    So why is the physical world perfectly designed to maximise suffering?
    If you don't agree then you need to learn more about the last 3 billion years of the history of life.
    24 pages of avoiding the question!

    This is my position:

    Suffering = conscious perception of evil.

    I'm not talking about non human "suffering".

    Non human animals do not have consciousness. So they can't perceive evil (natural and moral). Non human animals are just biological machines.

    Consciousness is a very recent phenomenon in history (+- 6000 years).

    About natural evil I will write down all the premises that lead to my conclusion. If you don't agree with my conclusion then point out exactly what premise you don't accept and why. OK?

    # God is bound by His nature.

    #God must always choose the best option possible.

    # God created only conscious being in His image (nature, intellect and will)

    # the first stage of existence of every creature must be in free-will. (because God is justice and justice demand authenticity).

    # privacy from God's full presence is needed by free-will.

    # privacy from God's full presence requires natural laws.

    # natural laws produce natural evil.

    Therefore natural evil is inevitable in all possible worlds.

  • John_Mann
    John_Mann
    That doesn't work. You asserted earlier that your god cares about physical suffering. He clearly doesn't.

    Because there's no instant solution does not means God doesn't care. His solution is eternal reward in Heaven.

    But according to christians god invented those natural laws from scratch.

    He's not a magician.

    God is bound by His very nature.

    The predominance of predators and parasites was god's idea. The natural world reflects the nature of the creator.

    Natural world is ruled by randomness not by God's will or nature.

    He could have made the world any way he wished.

    No.

    He designed it to maximise pain.

    No. Natural world is not directly designed.


    You are so obsessed by the soul you are willing to justify any physical suffering aren't you?

    The existence of the immortal soul is a logical conclusion that predates Christianity.

    Logic is true.