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Why would a Christian want to change the world?
Posted: 17 October 2012 10:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 211 ]
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Bryan - 17 October 2012 01:12 PM

Give an example of a “made up” logical limit that suits me and how it’s different from one that I get to assume.

The assumption is that God is bound by logical limits and we both except it.

An example is God cannot lift a stone heavier than he can lift. The reason is we know there is a logical contradiction.

Your invented logical contradictions are nothing like this, not remotely close. The supposed contradictions are imagined, hidden from view and you are asserting they are there.

It’s hidden from view why the best of all possible worlds would include free will. It’s hidden from view that some evil is necessary for greater good.

Not so with the stone example.

Stephen

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Posted: 17 October 2012 11:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 212 ]
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StephenLawrence - 17 October 2012 10:45 PM
Bryan - 17 October 2012 01:12 PM

Give an example of a “made up” logical limit that suits me and how it’s different from one that I get to assume.

The assumption is that God is bound by logical limits and we both except it.

An example is God cannot lift a stone heavier than he can lift. The reason is we know there is a logical contradiction.

Your invented logical contradictions are nothing like this, not remotely close. The supposed contradictions are imagined, hidden from view and you are asserting they are there.

Like what?  I asked for an example and you give me an example of something else.

It’s hidden from view why the best of all possible worlds would include free will. It’s hidden from view that some evil is necessary for greater good.

What is “morally good” if free will doesn’t exist?  This is not a hidden problem.  It has stood at the forefront of moral reasoning for centuries.  And it’s not even a proposed contradiction, so far as I can see.  Rather, it represents a potential reason for the existence of suffering that the deductive argument simply must account for.  Deductive arguments must account for all possibilities.  Otherwise they’re not deductive.

Not so with the stone example.

So the stone example is completely different from the examples I’m hiding that you won’t identify.  Apparently I’ve hidden them well.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 01:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 213 ]
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IMO, Good and Evil are an unintended consequence of God giving us a brain that can tell the difference. It was an oversight.
A naturally perfect world can easily be attained without good and evil.  I have never seen an evil cow, and I have seen many cows….. cheese

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Posted: 18 October 2012 01:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 214 ]
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If God is omnipresent and omnipotent then all discussion of good and evil becomes moot.  Everything that happens in the universe IS part of God. The Devil is part of God.

Similar that space and time are inevitably entwined into spacetime (a duality), so is God (good) inevitably entwined (a duality) with the Devil (evil). Citing God, as an example of higher ethical conduct, is meaningless, IMO.

It also avoids many logical contradictions….... cheese

[ Edited: 18 October 2012 02:07 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 18 October 2012 02:11 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 215 ]
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Perhaps this is the symbolic meaning of the Trinity
1. the Father = Good
2. the Son = Evil
3. the Spirit = Free Will.

Sounds good…!

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Posted: 18 October 2012 06:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 216 ]
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I admit I have never studied logic, and much of this argument seems to hang on the more academic points of that discipline.  But, to my uneducated mind, Write4U is on to something.  It would seem that true, fundamental, (if you will), omnipotence cannot be defined by it’s very nature.  How can one define, except in the broadest terms, a force which creates, controls, and knows everything, and is active, can assert its will at will.  If such a force, God, exists, there absolutely nothing we can know.  Anything, anything, is subject to the incomprehensible whim of this entity.  The hubris of Theologians is revealed by their claim to have discovered a set of logical rules which omnipotence functions by, (apparently they know the mind of God), but how can a truly omnipotent God be bound by any rules. 

Advocates of religion often claim that without an omnipotent God there can be no order, but perhaps the order we experience is the best evidence that a God of the sort proposed by many religions, and certainly the God of the Christians, does not exist.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 10:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 217 ]
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Jeciron - 18 October 2012 06:02 AM

I admit I have never studied logic, and much of this argument seems to hang on the more academic points of that discipline.

I’m in the same boat as you.

The thing is we are aware that it’s logically impossible to lift a stone heavier than we can lift, because if we could lift it, it wouldn’t be heavier than we could lift.

It’s an immediately obvious logical contradiction.

But when a theist says the best possible world without free will is a logical contradiction, this is a very different matter indeed, though Bryan will stubbornly refuse to acknowledge the point.

Much better that all sentient beings were happy than that some of them had free will, I would have thought. Whether I’m right or wrong about that the logical contradictions theists have invented to over come the problem of evil are very different from the obvious example I gave, and more than likely are simply not logical contradictions at all.

Stephen

[ Edited: 18 October 2012 10:35 AM by StephenLawrence ]
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Posted: 18 October 2012 10:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 218 ]
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StephenLawrence - 18 October 2012 10:32 AM
Jeciron - 18 October 2012 06:02 AM

I admit I have never studied logic, and much of this argument seems to hang on the more academic points of that discipline.

I’m in the same boat as you.

The thing is we are aware that it’s logically impossible to lift a stone heavier than we can lift, because if we could lift it, it wouldn’t be heavier than we could lift.

It’s an immediately obvious logical contradiction.

But when a theist says the best possible world without free will is a logical contradiction, this is a very different matter indeed, though Bryan will stubbornly refuse to acknowledge the point.

I don’t say that the best possible world without free will is a logical contradiction.  I say it’s a possibility that must be accounted for in an argument from evil.

Love how you manufacture a straw man instead of addressing my reply to you above.  It’s so cuuuuuuute!

Much better that all sentient beings were happy than that some of them had free will, I would have thought.

Right.  We’ll just be happy brains in a vat.  Not even really any reason to get out of bed or fix a meal.  Just a forever sensation of pleasure.  What could be better than that?  Obviously nothing.

And if that follows, does it make sense for Stephen to hook his pleasure center up to an electrical stimulator (what Niven called a “tasp” in his fiction) and check out from this painful and unpreferable world?

Whether I’m right or wrong about that the logical contradictions theists have invented to over come the problem of evil are very different from the obvious example I gave, and more than likely are simply not logical contradictions at all.

Still waiting for your example of a made-up logical contradiction the theist uses to argue against the atheist’s argument from evil.  This is going to take a long time, isn’t it?

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Posted: 18 October 2012 11:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 219 ]
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Bryan - 17 October 2012 12:28 PM
TimB - 17 October 2012 09:44 AM

Using philosophical terms that are obsure to a layperson do not make your argument any better. 

That’s not a weakness of my argument.  It’s a weakness of your understanding.  I can explain what I’m saying to you if you like.  Or you can look it up on the Internets.  Your choice.

I already looked it up.  And I didn’t say it made your argument weaker, just not better.

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As a fabrication of our own consciousness, our assignations of meaning are no less “real”, but since humans and the fabrications of our consciousness are routinely fraught with error, it makes sense, to me, to, sometimes, question such fabrications.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 12:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 220 ]
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TimB - 18 October 2012 11:46 AM
Bryan - 17 October 2012 12:28 PM
TimB - 17 October 2012 09:44 AM

Using philosophical terms that are obsure to a layperson do not make your argument any better. 

That’s not a weakness of my argument.  It’s a weakness of your understanding.  I can explain what I’m saying to you if you like.  Or you can look it up on the Internets.  Your choice.

I already looked it up.

Good.  Learn something?

And I didn’t say it made your argument weaker, just not better.

*sigh*

I didn’t say you said it made my argument weaker.

What was the point of your comment in the first place?  A way to pretend to criticize my argument without needing content to back up the assertion?  An irrelevant attack on the construction of the argument?  A fine whine that it is too technical for some?

Blah, blah, blah.  Try to stick to the point.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 12:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 221 ]
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It seems like it’s hard to make an argument from evil without a very concise definition of God.  I think that it’s incumbent upon the believer to put forth that definition, defining God’s capabilities and behavior.  Clearly if God is not subject to logic the existence of evil is no contradiction, without logic there is no such thing as a contradiction.  If God is subject to logic*, it then falls upon the believer to provide a logical premise which explains how evil exists.  If God isn’t good, merciful, forgiving and loving then evil is no contradiction, but why worship a God like that?  If the usual Christian concept of god is being proposed, (i.e. a logical, all knowing, all loving, all forgiving, omnipotent ruler), the existence of evil is much more confusing.  Why do good people suffer?

I suppose that the inability to provide a logic for the suffering of innocents does not disprove the existence of God, for it can always be claimed that God’s reasons are incomprehensible to man, still, you’d think a merciful God would have made his reasons for allowing evil clearer to the average person.  But what I really don’t see is how the existence of evil in any way constitutes proof of the existence of God. 

*If God is the supreme ruler, God cannot be subject to anything, not even logic.  If logic controls God, then logic is the supreme ruler and so Logic, perhaps, might be considered to be God.  I kind of like that.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 01:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 222 ]
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Bryan - 18 October 2012 12:43 PM
TimB - 18 October 2012 11:46 AM
Bryan - 17 October 2012 12:28 PM
TimB - 17 October 2012 09:44 AM

Using philosophical terms that are obsure to a layperson do not make your argument any better. 

That’s not a weakness of my argument.  It’s a weakness of your understanding.  I can explain what I’m saying to you if you like.  Or you can look it up on the Internets.  Your choice.

I already looked it up.

Good.  Learn something?

And I didn’t say it made your argument weaker, just not better.

*sigh*

I didn’t say you said it made my argument weaker…

 

Really?  Specifically, you said “That’s not a weakness of my argument…”

The point is that the actual weakness of your argument is that it is nonsense.

Starting with the premise that God’s omnipotence means that it can do anything including anything that is impossible, is like starting with the premise: Let’s just assume that everything that I say is correct.

You can’t lose an argument with such a premise, but your argument is nonsense.

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As a fabrication of our own consciousness, our assignations of meaning are no less “real”, but since humans and the fabrications of our consciousness are routinely fraught with error, it makes sense, to me, to, sometimes, question such fabrications.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 01:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 223 ]
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TimB - 18 October 2012 01:06 PM
Bryan - 18 October 2012 12:43 PM
TimB - 18 October 2012 11:46 AM
Bryan - 17 October 2012 12:28 PM
TimB - 17 October 2012 09:44 AM

Using philosophical terms that are obsure to a layperson do not make your argument any better. 

That’s not a weakness of my argument.  It’s a weakness of your understanding.  I can explain what I’m saying to you if you like.  Or you can look it up on the Internets.  Your choice.

I already looked it up.

Good.  Learn something?

And I didn’t say it made your argument weaker, just not better.

*sigh*

I didn’t say you said it made my argument weaker…

 

Really?

Really.

Specifically, you said “That’s not a weakness of my argument…”

Right.  That’s not me saying you said it was a weakness.  It is me claiming that the technical language is not a weakness of the argument.

The point is that the actual weakness of your argument is that it is nonsense.

And there we have it.  You said you weren’t saying anything with your comment about any weakness of my argument.  You were just saying the technical language didn’t make it “better.”  Now we come to find out that your point was that the argument was weak because it was nonsense.  You just couldn’t be bothered to explain why it was nonsense and instead put in a comment about how the technical language I used didn’t make the argument better.

And your response fulfills the purpose of my comment, which is to bring you about to focus on the weaknesses in my argument, if any.  So, if you can think of reasons why my argument is weak, rather than simply asserting with no evidence to back you up, then now would be a terrific time to do it.

Starting with the premise that God’s omnipotence means that it can do anything including anything that is impossible, is like starting with the premise: Let’s just assume that everything that I say is correct.

You can’t lose an argument with such a premise, but your argument is nonsense.

You’re probably missing the point.  My argument that starts with the premise that omnipotence means able to do anything at all including the logically impossible is an attempt to reduce to absurdity arguments from your side that appear to insist on that straw man definition.  Your side claims I’m making stuff up with the logical restrictions on omnipotence.  I want examples of that.  I doubt I’ll get any that stand up to scrutiny.

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Posted: 18 October 2012 01:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 224 ]
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Bryan - 18 October 2012 01:23 PM

You’re probably missing the point.  My argument that starts with the premise that omnipotence means able to do anything at all including the logically impossible is an attempt to reduce to absurdity arguments from your side that appear to insist on that straw man definition.

There are no such arguments. Of course people who accept the argument from evil believe it’s logically possible for God to create a world without evil, or at least much less evil.

And again of course you believe it isn’t logically possible for God to create a world without evil, or at least much less evil. (unless he got very lucky, gave man free will and man made good choices every time, by sheer luck from God’s point of view)

Stephen

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Posted: 18 October 2012 01:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 225 ]
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Bryan - 18 October 2012 01:23 PM

...And there we have it.  You said you weren’t saying anything with your comment about any weakness of my argument… 

Part of the problem with your argumentative style, is that you sometimes simply make up what others say.  Show where I said what you attribute to me in your statement above.

Anyway, I find this nonsense tedious.  Perhaps I’ll catch you on another thread sometime.

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