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A Moral Conundrum
Posted: 28 March 2012 12:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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George - 28 March 2012 12:01 PM

They have obviously a huge problem, though, explaining why morally good God would create suffering. I guess they will always use the “free will” explanation when it comes to us, but I still would like to hear from a theist about God’s thinking behind the wasps who paralyze caterpillars by a sting, lay their eggs inside them, and after the eggs hatch, have the young ones chew their way out.

Why would God do that, Egor? Do wasps also have free will or is God a sadist?

That’s the age old question isn’t it? The “problem of evil.” The apologists have all sorts of answers but none of them satisfies the truly rational mind. Among my former crowd, their best explanation was that we live in a “fallen world”, despoiled by the devil and by the original sin of Adam & Eve. Once god restores all things, all things will return to the state that god intended, paradise will ensue. Blah blah blah blah.

Of course, the glaring problem with this explanation is that it either makes god weak (he couldn’t prevent the devil from rebelling and ruingin his creation), uncaring (he doesn’t wish to relieve suffering or prevent billions from eternal damnation), or just plain stupid: http://youtu.be/L7jClyinERY

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Posted: 28 March 2012 12:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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So caterpillars suffer because Adam and Eve sinned. Or maybe since it was the snake’s fault, caterpillars suffer because they kinda look like snakes.  cheese

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Posted: 28 March 2012 12:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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FreeInKy - 28 March 2012 12:16 PM

Of course, the glaring problem with this explanation is that it either makes god weak (he couldn’t prevent the devil from rebelling and ruingin his creation), uncaring (he doesn’t wish to relieve suffering or prevent billions from eternal damnation), or just plain stupid: http://youtu.be/L7jClyinERY

Epicurus:

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?

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Posted: 28 March 2012 12:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]
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Well, yeah… I guess Epy said it almost as well as I ...  smile

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Posted: 28 March 2012 04:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]
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Egor:

...If atheism is true, it is better to be the best sociopath you can be…

You are correct here, if you are already a sociopath, and you are talking about what is better for that individual sociopath. But you are incorrect if you are suggesting that it is better for humans in general. 

I think that it is in society’s best interest to keep sociopaths under control.  Sometimes sociopaths’ tendencies to enrich/promote themselves vs. others can be ameliorated by their coming under the control of some religious belief system.  This is one positive effect that religions can have.

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“Our lives are not our own. From womb to tomb… We are bound to others, past and present… And by each crime and every kindness… We birth our future.”  Sonmi, 2144.

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Posted: 28 March 2012 05:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]
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TimB - 28 March 2012 04:17 PM

Sometimes sociopaths’ tendencies to enrich/promote themselves vs. others can be ameliorated by their coming under the control of some religious belief system.  This is one positive effect that religions can have.

I doubt that religious notions of morality would have any effect on a true sociopath. As well, there are certainly plenty of folks who express devoted religious belief as well as sociopathic tendencies.

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Posted: 28 March 2012 06:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]
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I don’t think anything has an effect on a true sociopath.

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Posted: 29 March 2012 11:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]
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I don’t think anything has an effect on a true sociopath.

Stopping a hail of bullets from the police or an intended victim who is unwilling to be a victim usually does the trick. Beyond that, forget about it.

For my own money, I find the arguement from morality as a justification for a belief in a god or gods to be laughable in the extreme since deities tend to be shown as the biggest sociopaths of all! The Biblical deluge by itself is a portrait of a god who is a genocidal monster!

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Posted: 29 March 2012 01:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]
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dougsmith - 28 March 2012 05:33 PM
TimB - 28 March 2012 04:17 PM

Sometimes sociopaths’ tendencies to enrich/promote themselves vs. others can be ameliorated by their coming under the control of some religious belief system.  This is one positive effect that religions can have.

I doubt that religious notions of morality would have any effect on a true sociopath. As well, there are certainly plenty of folks who express devoted religious belief as well as sociopathic tendencies.

I guess that depends on your definition of a sociopath vs. a true sociopath.  And I only said that the tendencies could be ameliorated.

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“Our lives are not our own. From womb to tomb… We are bound to others, past and present… And by each crime and every kindness… We birth our future.”  Sonmi, 2144.

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Posted: 30 March 2012 07:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]
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George - 28 March 2012 12:01 PM
FreeInKy - 28 March 2012 11:45 AM
advocatus - 28 March 2012 10:22 AM

If it was so much “better” to be the kind of anarchist that Egor describes, then why does evolution consistently go with cooperative social groups?  Even that most proverbial of loner animals, the common housecat, will form social groups given half the chance.  I just don’t know where he gets these ideas from!

It’s the prevailing view among Christians. I heard it for years. The godless atheists and their evolution—everything about it is evil and ultimately leads only to greed and selfishness. All good, loving, caring desires come from god, without whom we are all rotten to the core.

They have obviously a huge problem, though, explaining why morally good God would create suffering. I guess they will always use the “free will” explanation when it comes to us, but I still would like to hear from a theist about God’s thinking behind the wasps who paralyze caterpillars by a sting, lay their eggs inside them, and after the eggs hatch, have the young ones chew their way out.

Why would God do that, Egor? Do wasps also have free will or is God a sadist?

Egor claims that we atheists don’t think through the implications of our beliefs, so here’s on for him.  If “free will” is the root of all evils, then obviously there will be no free will in Heaven!  Don’t you think God learned his lesson in the Garden of Eden?  So… you’re looking at all Eternity with no free will.  After the first thousand years, do you think you’ll even remember your life?  You might as well be pinned to a cork board!

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Posted: 30 March 2012 07:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]
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advocatus - 30 March 2012 07:15 AM

Egor claims that we atheists don’t think through the implications of our beliefs, so here’s on for him.  If “free will” is the root of all evils, then obviously there will be no free will in Heaven!  Don’t you think God learned his lesson in the Garden of Eden?  So… you’re looking at all Eternity with no free will.  After the first thousand years, do you think you’ll even remember your life? You might as well be pinned to a cork board!

That’s an excellent point, and one that I had never given more than just a passing thought to. What a miserable existence for a rational being! And why create humans with the capacity to make free choices (or, why allow us to arrive at that state) and spend a mortal lifetime savoring the joys of being a free sentient being, then turn around a force us to spend “an eternity” as glorified pets? Now that sounds like hell to me.

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Posted: 02 April 2012 01:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]
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Heaven has been revealed to me in the following way: There are three fates a human will experience, destruction, hell or heaven. Destruction is for the vast majority of people. Hell is for those who know about Christ and reject him. Heaven is for those who have been reborn into the spirit of Christ in this life.

The only way heaven can be anything like heaven is if each soul is in their own heaven. And then, they would have to have power and control to form their environment the way they want it. I think the best model for this is a lucid dream. I have had many lucid dreams, and perhaps you have as well.

Every night we dream and our mind forms a universe, there is no reason to think our mind won’t do the same thing in the next phase of existence should we move on to the kingdom of heaven. There, we could ressurect anyone we wanted to, any pet we lost, anything. We could make creatures just like God made us. Maybe you could even figure out a way to give them free will, if that’s what you wanted to do.

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Then Jesus said, “Do not let your hearts be troubled; you believe in God. Believe also in Me. (VGJC 44:17)

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Posted: 02 April 2012 04:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]
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Egor, you forgot to start your post with “once upon a time there was…”

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Posted: 02 April 2012 05:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]
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George is right Egor, you just “revealed” a fairy tale.

Bunk. Pure bunk.

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Posted: 02 April 2012 07:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]
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Egor - 02 April 2012 01:54 AM

Heaven has been revealed to me in the following way: There are three fates a human will experience, destruction, hell or heaven. Destruction is for the vast majority of people. Hell is for those who know about Christ and reject him. Heaven is for those who have been reborn into the spirit of Christ in this life.

The only way heaven can be anything like heaven is if each soul is in their own heaven. And then, they would have to have power and control to form their environment the way they want it. I think the best model for this is a lucid dream. I have had many lucid dreams, and perhaps you have as well.

Every night we dream and our mind forms a universe, there is no reason to think our mind won’t do the same thing in the next phase of existence should we move on to the kingdom of heaven. There, we could ressurect anyone we wanted to, any pet we lost, anything. We could make creatures just like God made us. Maybe you could even figure out a way to give them free will, if that’s what you wanted to do.

What you’re describing is a dream world in which people never actually interact with other people, only with dream fascimiles.  Okay, that would certain solve the problem of free will as it applies to the afterlife.  The only thing you seem to overlook is that the reason we can dream like this is that we have physical brains which actually do reside in a reality, this reality.  Where will the brains of these dreaming people reside… the Matrix?

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