The Instigator
stropheum
Pro (for)
Tied
12 Points
The Contender
sleepiB
Con (against)
Tied
12 Points

Atheists can go to heaven

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/26/2008 Category: Religion
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,756 times Debate No: 3808
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (14)
Votes (8)

 

stropheum

Pro

With religion being such a shaky topic I just want to come outright and say yes, i do believe in a God.

Dictionary.com defines God as "The one Supreme Being, the creator and ruler of the universe."

Just to express my religious standpoint, i honestly admit to not knowing if there is an intelligent designer, or if everything happens by chance, but my personal beliefs consist of this: Everything is made up of energy at its lowest level. Energy flows in and out of everything, including the universes(Yes, i do believe in a multiverse), and I believe that energy creates and rules the activities inside every universe. By the definition of Dictionary.com, i do believe in god, yes. Now that I have established my standpoint, I will try my best to approach this topic without offending any person of a specific religion

>>>Also, i will refer to Mankind as "man" from now on in this debate, just to clear up any more possible confusion.

Okay, now as for my opening statement, i say that a man who admits to not knowing about a specific god, or even having a completely different belief, can make his/her way to "heaven", or any religious equivalent, regardless which religion is correct, be it Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, or any of the other religions that exist.

>>>For example, say we make a man for the sake of this argument. For the sake of the argument, I will also make a hypothetical world, in which one religion is true. I will compare him between two big aspects of American religion: Atheism and Christianity. This man lives a life of complete Atheism, never once considers the existence of a God. But this man is very morally attuned, and leads a very healthy lifestyle. He never stole, never committed adultery, never committed any of the sins proclaimed in the Bible, and therefore, led a "perfect" life, in the view of any devout Christian. Then, as fate would have it, Christianity turned out to be the absolute truth, and when our man dies, he faces his judgement before God himself. I believe whole-heartedly that our man should be allowed into the kingdom of heaven, for he did everything that the bible wished of him, and he did nothing that the bible advised against. I don't think that a just being such as god would send our man to hell for leading a life exactly the way that he wanted, therefore he has no place to go but heaven.

>>>Good luck to whoever may accept this challenge
sleepiB

Con

I challenge your assumption that heaven exists, and your implied assumption that there is a correct religion. The burden of proof is on the proponent, and I must ask: Have you ever met an atheist that has been to heaven, is there any evidence of this?

Your argument would have been better off if you actually defined, or at least described this "heaven".
Debate Round No. 1
stropheum

Pro

First off I would like to thank you sleepiB, for accepting the challenge and I'll take the time to address each part of your response.

>>>First off, you say "I challenge your assumption that heaven exists, and your implied assumption that there is a correct religion"

>>>I did not assume any existence of heaven, or any correct religion, i merely stated certain hypothetical situations which related to Christianity versus Atheism. Also, the statement of me assuming a correct religion exists is not necessarily false, because there are almost infinite views on how the world works and what gods do what, if there are any gods, and any existence of heaven. Note that when i first refer to heaven, i also include any religious equivalent, which includes all forms of ultimate peace which are generally contained in each religion in one way or another. For example, Buddhists believe in nirvana, which is an enlightened state of being, the religious equivalent to the Christian "heaven". Clearly not heaven in the sense one would assume, but it amounts to the same thing. I apologize for not making this more clear in my opening statement.

>>>Secondly, you bring up the question "Have you ever met an atheist that has been to heaven, is there any evidence of this?"

>>>This is a very good question, but i find it irrelevant due to the fact that i was referring to Christianity as a hypothetical truth and a sinless man as a hypothetical Atheist. This situation i conceived was created as such to show that if in particular the Christian god exists, then believing in him is irrelevant to one's being allowed into heaven, but merely that they have led a "proper" life.

>>>As for the last part of your opening statement, you state "
Your argument would have been better off if you actually defined, or at least described this "heaven"."

>>>Again, a decent point. But as i refer to heaven in the Christian sense of the word, the definition seemed to me to be very strongly implied, but if you wish to have a definition to have more bearing on the subject, i will go back to dictionary.com for their definition, which is:"the place or state of existence of the blessed after the mortal life." And again, I apologize for not going into as great of detail as you would have liked on this.

>>>But on the whole, friend, you fail to actually defend the topic at hand. You seemed to have attempted to punch a whole in my beliefs in Christianity, which I don't have oddly enough, but you seem to have failed to defend your side of the argument, which is not challenging my so-called "assumptions" but instead arguing the point that Atheists do not deserve to go to heaven because they don't believe or at least admit they do not know that a God exists.

>>>And come to think of it, you really didn't challenge my standpoint in that, if Christianity was truth, an Atheist who lived a proper life would be able to go to heaven. Please stay on the topic, and good luck with round 2.
sleepiB

Con

You did not limit your argument to any Christian idea, nor specify if that idea is textual, or derived from an oral tradition.

You said, "Okay, now as for my opening statement, i say that a man who admits to not knowing about a specific god, or even having a completely different belief, can make his/her way to "heaven", or any religious equivalent, regardless which religion is correct, be it Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, or any of the other religions that exist."

Your argument assumes the existence of "heaven" because it does not demonstrate the existence of heaven. Your argument also excludes the religions that do not have a construct equivalent to the Christian idea of heaven, do you simply assume those religions cannot exist?

If you want to limit this discussion to Christianity, what if fundamentalist baptists are correct? Their belief system dictates that it is physically impossible for any human to live morally, that our sins are inherited, and that the only way for any human to get into heaven is through Christ.

I never went off topic, please re-read your first post, you never said you were Christian, and still haven't specified the related text/translation, nor other sources of doctrine.
Debate Round No. 2
stropheum

Pro

sleepiB, you don't seem to understand the fact that for the sake of this argument, I am assuming heaven to by the hypothetical truth. Essentially I have said that if there is, in fact a heaven, which i previously defined, could a man not of that specific religion, or even one who does not believe in that religion, get there?

Anyway, on to analyzing your argument.

"You did not limit your argument to any Christian idea, nor specify if that idea is textual, or derived from an oral tradition."

>>>You're absolutely right, however this is completely irrelevant. Once again, I am arguing a hypothetically factual heaven and a hypothetically sinless man. My reference to Christianity was merely that: a reference. I built up a situation to support my point. Also, this idea(I will assume you're talking about the topic of the debate) is not textual, or derived from an oral tradition as far as i know, but that again, is irrelevant. I do not need to quote scriptures and poor translations to support my side of the argument. I already did that and then some in round 2, which after, given the chance, you have done nothing to contradict my points or even bring up one of your own, but merely argue the existence of heaven, which is clearly not the topic of this debate.

"If you want to limit this discussion to Christianity, what if fundamentalist baptists are correct? Their belief system dictates that it is physically impossible for any human to live morally, that our sins are inherited, and that the only way for any human to get into heaven is through Christ."

>>>Finally, a point to analyze, and a good one at that. If fundamentalist baptism were to be the absolute truth, then this could contradict my argument. But let's look at this closely for a moment.
>>>>>>"the only way for any human to get into heaven is through Christ."
>>>>>>This is a legitimate belief, but it does seem to have a slight flaw to it. By this belief, my sinless man, created in the scenario of the previous round, would be banished to hell for all eternity. Why is this? For merely not believing, perhaps even not knowing of the existence of Christ. Does this mean that NOT knowing about Jesus Christ is a deadly sin? Perhaps the deadliest of them all, in fundamentalist baptism, if it is the deciding factor of who stays and who goes in heaven.
>>>>>>But this is where my hypothetical situation becomes contradicted, because in fundamentalist baptism, you are essentially saying that not believing in Jesus Christ is a sin, which would make my "sinless" man, no longer sinless. In this scenario, for a man to be sinless and go to heaven, he would have to believe in the faith.

>>>So fundamentalist baptism works against my favor, in the sense of nothing more than a technicality. But again, this is assuming religion on a very small scale, where as I argue the topic of all religions that believe in some equivalent of "Heaven". And to answer your previous question, yes, in this hypothetical world, all religions who do not believe in the existence of heaven are wrong. This is not a statement about the real world, merely to filter out any excess confusion in the argument.

>>>Now I will end my closing argument with a breakdown of this debate, concluding with why I believe i have won.
1:Throughout this argument, my opponent has been arguing irrelevant issues that honestly belong in a separate debate.
2:While I have provided ample points to support my side of the argument, my opponent has provided but none.
3:I have analyzed every response my opponent has made, and provided counterarguments to each, where as my opponent only made one legitimate contradiction to my argument. This was quite a contradiction i must admit, but due to the restrictive aspect of his contradiction, does not disprove my point, that in fact, overall, a sinless Atheist CAN and SHOULD go to Heaven, if there is such a place.

>>>I would like to end this argument by saying thank you to sleepiB for accepting it, and I would like to urge the voters to choose based on the debate, not on your personal beliefs. Vote Pro =)
sleepiB

Con

You have failed to demonstrate that anyone, much less an atheist, can go to heaven. The burden of proof is always on the proponent, you made a positive assertion and failed to support it.

The assertion was that atheists can go to heaven, regardless of the religious doctrine examined. Which I responded to by providing a test case, an example of a religious doctrine that contradicts your proposition, a fatal inconsistency.

I thank you for replying to my posts in a timely manner.
Debate Round No. 3
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by stropheum 9 years ago
stropheum
To spiral, there most certainly is a scientific god. The scientific gods are the most accepted theories coupled with all of its laws. God is defined as a ruler of the universe, and that is the way i refer to any god. In mathematics, math as a whole rules the universe, so in that sense all of the mathematical properties make up the mathematical god. But just as it would be ignorant to assume the existence or nonexistence of anything that any of us here can obviously not know, your statement is equally so.
Posted by sleepiB 9 years ago
sleepiB
This is one question on which atheists can nominally agree with fundamentalist Christians.

Atheist: I can't go to a place that doesn't exist
Fundie: You can't go to heaven because YOU ARE GOING TO HELL!
Posted by The_Philosopher 9 years ago
The_Philosopher
ever since adam, the "sin gene" has been passed down by our fathers. jesus didn't have an earthly father so he wasn't predispossessed to sin.

this being said, it's impossible for any human to live a sinless life except jesus.

besides, not lying, lusting, hitting, whining, complaining, mocking, speeding, driving without shoes on, being contemptuous, coveting, deceiving, etc. EVER in your whole life would be a miracle in itself, and would therefore prove God's existence anyways. haha (somewhat joking).

just committing ONE sin sends us to hell.
Posted by Spiral 9 years ago
Spiral
There is no "scientific god", science is a verb, a way of doing something. Science theory does not need to propose a hypothetical god, it has done wonderfully well without doing so. To use the famous line from Laplace "I have no need for that hypothesis".
Posted by stropheum 9 years ago
stropheum
Haha, no, i don't expect they will. The most they will do, which i probably did a poor job of explaining, is just hypothetically assume a god exists, just to contradict someone else's god. But they don't realize that their contradiction of the religious god is the same religious contradiction of the scientific god(ex. entropic existence).
Posted by Spiral 9 years ago
Spiral
no 'science' will not claim a designer *laughs* unless there is rational proof to that effect.
Posted by stropheum 9 years ago
stropheum
This is one reason why Pascal's wager is parallel to mine, yet similar. I'm just pointing out that even if there is such thing as divine truth, there is no such thing as divine knowledge, because nobody can factually prove, disprove, or even come to a happy middle ground on the existence of god. Even if we had proof that the universe was created by random occurrence, religious people could say that intelligent design created randomness itself, and then scientist come back and say that science created the designer, and so on and so forth.
Posted by Spiral 9 years ago
Spiral
Heaven is not as likely an artifact of human creation as any other "divine truths"? Pascal's argument was unfinished, he had intended to prove the god of his faith, which is the only support the wager could possibly have. Challenging one defined construct of god (omnipotent, omniscient etc) makes all succeptible to challenge which leaves you with what? No biblical source and you have no basis for belief, unless you prescribe to "I think of god therefore he exists" solipsism.
Posted by stropheum 9 years ago
stropheum
Pascal's wager? I don't think so. you're partially right, in the sense that i accept human limits in the fact that nobody can know what is divine truth and what is man-made propaganda to help us accept death, but the point of debate is for the most part parallel, however related. And i completely disagree with justcallmetarzan, in that Pascal's wager is more solid than many religious arguments out there, because he not only doesn't assume knowledge that obviously he cannot have, but states that our uncertainty is the only certainty we can have. People aren't happy with concepts like these though. We all need truth and assurances of what happens when we die.
Posted by Spiral 9 years ago
Spiral
Oh so true ***laughs***

character limits are annoying
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by cooljpk 9 years ago
cooljpk
stropheumsleepiBTied
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Vote Placed by repete21 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Vi_Veri 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by birdpiercefan3334 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by draxxt 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Spiral 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by stropheum 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by sleepiB 9 years ago
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