I think I am most bewildered by the assertion that anything is not worth proving or disproving. The more I think about this, the more positive I am that this is the most basic and elemental function in our lives. What's real, and what's not? What's valid, and what's not?
We're talking about knowledge and wisdom, and the pursuit thereof. We're talking about critical thinking, and we're talking about "An unexamined life is not worth living." We're talking, "I think, therefore I am." We're talking about your own beliefs versus mine. We're talking about voting and democracy.
We're talking about AMERICA. (Yea, it is a concept so holy that I mustcanshould resort to the ALLCAPS. Yahooey.)
We're talking about the potential, and the obligation to grow and to challenge your old beliefs, and move on and become a different person. We're talking about the possibility for you to evolve and become smarter and better, faster and stronger. We're talking about organic and spontaneous versus stagnant and ... awful. Terrible? Yes, terrible.
We're talking about your right to change your mind. (While it is, indeed, your prerogative, I say to Shania Twain, to hell with thee. It is not just a woman's right; it is a human right.)
You should, must, question everything that comes your way in life. Think for yourself! Demand citations that be needed! Think for yourself! Think for yourself! Vote! Think for yourself! You have opposable thumbs, for crissakes! Think for for yourself! We are the stewards of the universe, and we have been blessed with self-awareness and neuroticism, intelligence and skepticism. Think for your effin self, goddammit!
Gentle reader, your life should be dedicated to proving and disproving everything and anything at all.
Seems to me that this need to prove and disprove everything in life is an attempt to fill your time, heart, and soul with a need to define existence that could be met by the very God you are attempting to disprove.
If I were in your shoes, I’d rather search for true wisdom than spend time disproving the existence of an Omnipotent being that – to be honest – does not even need to be disproven. The Bible is so illogical, the idea of a being that could create the earth in seven days so ridiculous, that to spend so much time trying to disprove His existence seems – to be completely honest – an illogical waste of time. Certainly there are things in the scientific world to focus your energy on - things that would not waste the intellect of someone such as yourself. And I say this only half sarcastically – how about researching something that could really make a difference?
I reject your premise, on one condition. I do not care whether or not your person worships Jesus. I do care, passionately, however, when Jesus worshippers become strong enough in number, and loud enough in voice, to affect public policy, politics, education, foreign relations. At that point, I think it is detrimental and deleterious to our society.
At that point, I believe it is my obligation as a US citizen to say that your religion is poisoning my country, and so, if it pleases you, to hell with your religion!
But, if I may be so bold as to speak on behalf of the FSM community, I would would then like to reiterate that we do not care who you whoreship, or who you revere as The One True God, and we will never, nay ever, drive anybody away from your god.
I’ve noted in a prior post that it’s obvious that Christians have almost no power anymore in the U.S. a country that was founded on Christian principles. I did affect policy, politics, education, and foreign relations. So at what point did this begin poisoning our country – about the point that the vocal minority decided it was offensive to them.
The very existence of the FSM is driving people from Christianity, especially the younger generations who do not have the same ideologies that you espouse – question everything. Unfortunately, because they see you as an intelligent person who laughs in the face of the“One True God” they accept as fact that God is an impossibility, when it is not a fact.
Assuming that by "Jesus," you mean modern Christians, then I submit for your approval, the Inquisition. Abstinence Only sex education. The Crusades. Discrimination against gays. The Salem Witch Hunt. The damnation of all non-believers to hell.
The targets of these figurative and literal slaughters are all people who "do not believe in him."
I am positive that you anticipated this response, too, because you don't seem, from your grammar and sentence structure, to be stupid. Why would you leave yourself open to such a refutation?
Okay, we can bring this up, that’s fine, although I don’t normally tend to think of anything prior to 1700 as the “Modern” era of Christianity – tomato, tomAto. I would respond that these things were mistakes, just as the scientific community is capable of admitting mistakes, so are most reasonable Christians. The Crusades, the inquisition, the Salem Witch trials were all horrendous mistakes made by Christians – feel better? Now, go ask a Muslim if they feel the Muslim Conquests that preceded the Crusades were mistakes, and I’ll hazard a guess at their response.
Abstinence Only sex education works sometimes, of course not in every case, yet I would be inclined to mention that since we have been supplying teens with condoms and educating them in the “proper ways to protect themselves” that teen pregnancies have gone up. It appears that isn’t working too well either.
Why didn’t you bring up Fred Phelps and the Baptist Church in Topeka, KS? That would be much better source of “modern” Christians acting ridiculous than the crusades – that ended in the 1200’s – come on now, you can do better than that…
If you are going to have an issue with the “damnation of non-believers” then I think Christians are not the audience you should take this problem up with, just a suggestion. Not sure we can really do anything about that one Seabee.
I think you might be confusing FSMism with a religion that competes with Christianity. FSMism is not a religion. I would go so far as to say it is a non-religion. The movement has its origins in denouncing giving Christian Origin mythology unfair and undue attention in science classes in public schools.
Don't get me wrong. Believing in God is idiocy. (But it is a strange, separate, and unique idiocy. There are may smart, intelligent, decent people who believe in God. It is an anomaly that I have yet to understand.) But you are entitled to your idiocy. It is your God given right!
You pray to your god in the evenings and worship him in the mornings. I will feed my dog in the evenings and walk him in the mornings. Blessings on everyone, and peace upon mankind. Amen. Woof woof.
I used to live a path inverse to yours. You said you were once an atheist. I was, in my youth, a devout, Bible-thumping Christian. And even as such I happily accepted evolution, because even at 15 years old I knew that there could be no such thing as a literal interpretation of the Bible, and so I did not believe that creation happened in seven days, but that evolution was the means through which God chose to develop, direct and create life.
What I mean to say is that I don't think your religion has to preclude science.
And, incidentally, your wording here seems to imply a misconception of the technical definitions of scientific law, and scientific theory. Not condescendingly, do you understand why the Law of Thermodynamics is a law, and the Theory of Gravity is a theory?
Your statements above, I must admit, confuse me a bit. I judge you to be an intelligent person, and I too, have seen many intelligent men that are Christians. I would think that the very word “many” would cause you not to use the word “anomaly” in the very next sentence. At least I wouldn't use that strange combination, but hey, whatever. I would invite you to your local church and so you can see who attends. You will (hopefully) find that most of the congregation is intelligent and coherent. Most of us can even keep our mouths closed so as not to drool while others are talking.
In my opinion, those who do believe in God, yet do not believe He could do the entirety of Creation in seven days are not thinking it through. How can anyone believe in a Supernatural Being, yet not believe He can do Supernatural things? This is just a comment regarding the obvious intelligence that was a 15 year old you. And this is not meant to be condescending at all (okay, a little bit), I once believed the same thing you did when you were 15, until I thought it through.
As far as the “Law vs. Theory” question, I believe I understand the basic concept of law vs. theory, but I could be wrong. As I understand it, a law is something that cannot be proven wrong, whereas a theory is a logical explanation for things that happen – but, at some point, may be proven to be wrong. Fact: Man exists – Theory: evolution is the reason man exists according to the evidence. Am I close?
I think you have hit on a major selling point of science, a major reason why it is a superior belief system: it is self-correcting. I challenge you to find as many theological issues that the Church has as readily and happily accepted as incorrect, and in need of reevaluation and redefinition.
But to give credit where it is due, modern science was born of the ancient Church. Obviously. The Church used to be the only authority on the universe, its workings, and its marvel. Science had to take what it understood as truth (ie, the sun revolves around the sun, the ocean is full of monsters, Earth is 6,000 years old, the universe was created in seven days, slaves and women are inferior to men, etc) and go from there.
But, moreover, how dare you try to dig up dark chapters in the annals of scientific progress? Sure there's Egas Moniz and his lobotomies, and there are the countless horrors committed by the nazis in old Germany, and there is electroshock therapy, and more. But this all pales in comparison to the horrors and terrors committed by the Christian church over the centuries.
Your church's closet is full of several many more skeletons than that belonging to science, ya chump.
Well, let’s see, I can name a few –
1. The Catholic Church changed its belief of a Geocentric Universe, and apologized to Galileo for persecuting him, after his death.
2. The reformation
3. Some Churches now allow their leadership to be openly gay.
4. Christians acknowledge the Crusades were wrong.
5. Most Christians (not I) accept evolution as God’s method of Creation.
6. Views on women have changed.
7. Christians established the Republics that allowed non-Christians, such as yourself to thrive.
And the very fact that there are so many denominations would suggest that Christians have different beliefs about the theologies that are in the Bible. And for the most part – again not always – the different denominations respect the beliefs of the others and do not condemn them for their beliefs.
I have discussed the “earth revolves around the sun” issue on a previous post. I would say, however, that the beliefs about slaves and women did not come from Christianity but from other cultures that surrounded the Israelites during much of the Old Testament.
By the way, these things are not really “in our closet” being that the entire world knows about them and they have been admitted to, and for the most part apologized for, by a majority of Christians – chump.
Swickstrum: The one thing older than 2000 years that science has never been able to prove, or DIS-prove is the existence of, creation by, and subsequent sacrifice of - God Himself, no matter how hard they try. And by the looks of this website, and others just like it…there have been those that have been trying VERY hard.
Science does not have to disprove anything. You have but to PROVE a thing. This is the basis of FSMism. In the spirit of not being able to disprove a thing, one's worship of a flying spaghetti monster is every bit as valid as your worship of a ... bearded white guy on a cloud.
Okay, then why is our theory that God created the universe and everything in it any less valid than evolution? There are plenty of Creationists that have very valid points regarding creation that are dismissed as ridiculous because of the “faith” in evolution that evolutionists have. What makes one theory less valid than another? Seriously, is it the “majority rules” idea, the theory with the most proof, or what?
Science cannot prove evolution, cannot disprove God – fine. Christianity cannot prove the existence of God nor disprove evolution – fine. Why are we not allowed to discuss alternative possibilities?
If you are requiring full blown proof of God’s existence in order to worship, even the Bible says you will not get that, sorry bud. That is where faith in God rather than faith in evolution becomes the answer of where we place our beliefs.
Swickstrum: If you would like to read philosophical accounts of God’s existence – read Pascal, Kant, C.S. Lewis, or even Einstein.
Einstein was an atheist. His references to God were actually in reference to a more abstract god, as in the way of the universe, or the way of nature.
You could be right on this, both camps claim him as their own – maybe we should have a draft.
Here's a personal anecdote, though. I grew up in southern Alabama, in the midst of the Bible belt. I knew at a very early age that I did not believe in the Christian god (for reasons I can go into in another post). So if you want to talk about being shouted at, cursed, shunned, or hated because of one's religious beliefs, then I encourage you to contact me for further discourse.
Sorry that some idiot Christians treated you badly for that – some people do not know how to handle dissenters.
swickstrum: How awesome is that? I can tell you all that I believe, and all you will do is laugh at me and pat me on my little retarded shoulder while you wink at your friends. “He’s a stupid one.” You will say…“He really thinks there is a God…ha, ha.” And just leave me alone, right? We will see. I’m afraid the truth is I will be hated, mocked, made fun of, and threatened with violence.
I will certainly mock you and make fun of you. I will NEVER threaten you with violence or hate you. Because this is America, Mr. Paranoid.
Yeah, people in America are never threatened with violence or hated because of their beliefs – oh wait. What happened in Alabama again?
Once again, the intertubes is a wonderfully anonymous place. No need to get so personal. I hope you aren't actually going to post your family portrait after this.
They don’t deserve the disgrace of being seen by the likes of you non-believers…now that – is a joke. Post a picture? After I thought about it, I decided I’m not that ballsy, my wife would kill me – she scares me more than most large men.
swickstrum: Finally, I would like to say this: Make fun all you like, but the Bible still cannot be disproven, and there are no other documents as revered – yet more thoroughly tried to be proven false - as the Bible. And IF…by the small chance (according to science) IF…the Bible IS the true Word of God – then read and contemplate these words… Romans 1:18 – 25
No documents as revered? That is either terribly biased, or terribly ignorant, or both. There is also the Koran, the Torah, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tarvunti, the Tao, the Book of Marvin, and the Principia Discoria. Get over yourself.
The Bible has been bought more, given more, translated more, read more, taught more, and respected more than all of the above. Between 2.5 Billion and 6 Billion copies sold according to Business week. Get over those facts.
1. And these came to be known as the Laws of Marvin, which were as by Magic marked upon the walls of the bathrooms of the Priests of the Spirit Mallet, and they were seven in number:
2.Be thyself, for if thou dost not, thou art not.
3. Do that which makes thee glad, for sadness is the great oracle of the death of the soul.
4. Measure your progress in life by the rustiness of the gates through which you pass.
5. Remember the Pueblo.
6.Avoid he who has no mind, for if he has none himself, he shall surely demand thine of thee.
7. Learn that which others can teach, and teach that which others can learn.
8. Consider that the only entity who entirely occupies his world is Marvin, and He is lodged in an oak tree.
9. And such are the Laws of Marvin.
Oh, lookie! I can quote scripture too! Yippee! Yahooey! Yahweh![/quote]
No comment needed.