The Instigator
Magic8000
Pro (for)
Winning
2 Points
The Contender
DemosthenesLocke
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

There's Valid Reasons to Disbelieve in God

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Magic8000
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/19/2013 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,664 times Debate No: 32643
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (2)

 

Magic8000

Pro

Resolved: There's Valid Reasons to Disbelieve in God

Definitions

God: The Tri Omni Creator of the Universe.
Valid: Sufficient and correct in actually supporting the intended point or claim
Reasons: an argument presented in justification or explanation
Disbelieve: Not to believe something is true.

BOP is shared

Rules:
No Forfeits
No Fallacies
No Insults
72 Hours to Post Argument
8000 Characters Max
1 Week Voting Period
Acceptance in R1
Follow the debate structure

Structure:
Round 1: Pre-debate info and Acceptance
Round 2: My argument + Con's arguments and rebuttals.
Round 3: Rebuttals from both parties
Round 4: Rebuttals from both parties
Round 5: Conclusion, no new arguments or rebuttals. Keep under 1000 characters.
DemosthenesLocke

Con

This will be my first debate. I wish you luck.

I suppose now you will list your "valid reasons". Before we proceed, I should note that I am not a believer in God, but for the sake of the debate, I will be. Let's see how it goes.
Debate Round No. 1
Magic8000

Pro

Hello DemosthenesLocke and welcome to DDO

Argument 1: Magic8000's Non-Cognitivism Argument

  1. God is outside of our understanding and experience

  2. We give meaning to words by referring to what we understand and experience

    C. “God” is meaningless (From 1 and 2)

Con probably agrees with 1. It's logically proven if he doesn't. God is usually defined as “Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnibenevolent” We have no experience of these things in reality. We have no experience of all power or all knowledge.

George Smith says [1]

God is epistemologically transcendent; i.e., it falls beyond the scope of man’s intellectual comprehension. The full nature of god is not merely unknown, it is unknowable. Man’s rational capacity does not allow him to understand the nature of god, and any knowledge that man does possess concerning god is necessarily inadequate in some respect. God, by definition, is that which man cannot

understand.”

Michael Martin writes [2]

In the first place, when terms like “is loving”, “is forgiving”, and “brings about” are applied to God, they seem to mean something very different from what they mean when they are applied to human beings. For example, when we speak of a mother as being loving, we are referring in part to her behavior, and in particular the way she responds to her children. When we say that Jones brought about a fire, we are referring to certain of his bodily actions, such as his carelessly throwing a match onto a pile of paper. But when we say God is loving or God brought about a miracle, we cannot be referring to the behavior or bodily action of God, for He has no body.

Finally, George Smith says [1]

All of the supposedly positive qualities of God arise in a distinctively human context of finite existence, and when wrenched from this context to apply to a supernatural being, they cease to have meaning.


By classic Theistic reasoning, God is perfect, we are not. We can't understand “perfection”. In fact the Catholic Church actually said God is “incomprehensible” and “ineffable” [3]. God is outside the universe, yet what we know and understand is within the universe.
2 is simply known a priori and I don't think it will be disputed. If Con wishes to dispute it, he must provide a meaningful word that doesn't refer to anything that is within our understanding and experience.
Preventing misunderstanding of P2
Some attack premise 2 by stating something that is meaningful, but that we don't really have full understanding of. The premise isn't that we must understand and experience everything, just that something must refer to what we understand or experience in order to be meaningful.


If a word is meaningless, any attempt to prove it is useless! This makes atheism the only justified position. As a god can no more exist than any other meaningless thing that doesn't refer to reality such as a “zsgarbub”.


Strongatheism.net writes [4]
...to say, “A God exists” insofar as it attempts to construct itself as a proposition is false because the term “God” does not refer to an actual concept, and therefore to posit such a statement supposing that it does and that this referent exists in reality as something is an untrue positive declaration......
One cannot posit the existence of something if that something means nothing. The term itself, without referring to any specific concept or possible instantiation, holds no actual or even potential place in reality. In truth, it is amusing to note that the theistic position is unwittingly equivalent to the atheistic position, as to posit belief in “God” actually means “belief in nothing” – the stance of atheism.”

Argument 2: The Problem of Evil

The problem of evil shows a logical contradiction between God's properties and the world we observe.

Classic formulation

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

Basic formulation

1. If an all-powerful and perfectly good god exists, then evil does not.
2. There is evil in the world.
3. Therefore, an all-powerful and perfectly good god does not exist.

Complex formulation

1. God exists.
2. God is omnipotent, omniscient, and perfectly good.
3. A perfectly good being would want to prevent all evils.
4. An omniscient being knows every way in which evils can come into existence.
5. An omnipotent being, who knows every way in which an evil can come into existence, has the 6. power to prevent that evil from coming into existence.
7. A being who knows every way in which an evil can come into existence, who is able to prevent that evil from coming into existence, and who wants to do so, would prevent the existence of that evil.
8. If there exists an omnipotent, omniscient, and perfectly good being, then no evil exists.
9. Evil exists (logical contradiction).

C. God doesn't exist.

The resolution is affirmed
Now to Con for his arguments and rebuttals.
[1] George Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God (Buffalo, New York: Prometheus Books, 1979), Chapter 3.

[2]Atheism: A Philosophical Justification, Chapter 1

[3] 1968 National Catholic Almanac, edited by Felician A. Foy, O. F. M. (Paterson: St. Anthony’s Guild, 1968), p. 360

[4] http://www.strongatheism.net...


DemosthenesLocke

Con

All good points! Let's get to it then.

Before we begin: Insofar as I am aware, God the entity and God the word are separate. For example, a human would still be human if he were called something else--a beedledum, for instance.
So simply because the word God, as you say, is "meaningless", does not mean that the entity it represents is meaningless, as well.

"1. God is outside our understanding and experience.
2. We give meaning to words by referring to what we understand and experience.
C. God is meaningless.
Con probably agrees with 1. It's logically proven if he doesn't. God is usually defined as 'Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnibenevolent.' We have no experience of these things in reality. We have no experience of all power or all knowledge."

First, I would like to clash briefly with Pro on his first point, which is an opinion, and not a fact, as it is implied by his stating, "It's logically proven."
Many believers in God have claimed to both understand and experience him. I know what you're thinking: "I'm talking about the word 'God', not the actually entity himself." But the two were only separated when I made them so at the beginning of my argument--in your argument, the two are one and the same. In your eyes, the WORD is the THING, and if the WORD is meaningless, so is the THING.
But this is a logical fallacy (rule #2 broken), for the simple reasons I gave at the beginning.
You don't have to be omnipotent, omniscient, or omnibenevolent to understand or experience God. An alien with one eye wouldn't need two in order to understand how we see; nor does he need to understand us in order to experience us.
Certainly he might not understand if I were to punch him in the face, but that would not stop him from experiencing the pain; however, he could also understand just fine. He could have just urinated on my shoe, in which case my resulting attack would not have been totally unexpected.
That might sound silly, but it's a valid metaphor. Believers claim all the time that they understand what God is doing in their lives. They also claimed to have experienced him during prayer or worship.

Thus:

1. Believers understand God. Believers experience God.
2. We give meaning to words by referring to what we understand or experience.
C. God is meaningful.

Now I'd like to backtrack a bit to when you said, "Con probably agrees with 1. It's logically proven if he doesn't."
Nothing is logically proven. It can be logically supported, but not proven; otherwise religion would have been disproved long ago.
Furthermore: "Logic is relative." --John Irving (http://www.goodreads.com...)
Simply because you find God's existence illogical does not mean a believer will. In the believer's stance, God logically exists because to the believer, it's logical.
Not only is saying, "It's logically proven" a fallacy in and of itself, but I even demonstrated how logically your statement is unsound, making your situation all the worse.
This might seem irrelevant, but I'm telling you this because simply because you "logically" believe that God is "meaningless", does not mean that other people do, making your point invalid, and illogical.

"By classic Theistic reasoning, God is perfect, we are not. We can't understand 'perfection'. In fact the Catholic church actually said God is 'incomprehensible' and 'infallible'."

Again, we come to a problem with the word "understand". Perhaps you mean to say that we cannot ACHIEVE perfection. Which means we can't EXPERIENCE perfection. Which means that, by your own definition, "perfection" has no meaning.
Which, of course, is perfectly false. Just another example of a faulty system of logic.
I don't really understand what you're trying to say in the above quote. Since we CAN understand "perfection", that argument is invalid, really. But I'll try to help you by deducing that you mean to say that we can't understand God because we can't understand perfection (which we can, cancelling out both statements).
Or maybe you mean exactly what I said above, which is that we can't ACHIEVE or EXPERIENCE perfection. In which case, you have just provided yourself with a perfectly, logically sound reason why a God should/could/and would exist.

"God is outside the universe, yet what we know and understand is within the universe."

Where did you get the idea that God is outside the universe? I don't recall the Bible, or any other source of information about God ever claiming that he exists outside the universe. Perhaps you believe that because he created the universe, he could not then logically exist within it.
However, I believe the common Theistic standpoint is that he exists in another DIMENSION, but still resides within the universe.

"If a word is meaningless, any attempt to prove it is useless! This makes Atheism the only justified position."

I'm not exactly sure how the two are relatable... Unless, all this time, Atheists have been arguing against the belief in meaningless words.
Again, you're confusing God the entity with God the word.
However, let's go with what you're saying here--I'll deduce what I can: Since the word God is meaningless (which, as I showed, it isn't) any attempt to prove it (God, the entity) is useless!
Which means that you're essentially saying that any attempt to prove God's existence is useless. I would return that any attempt to disprove him is equally useless, as God represents that which humanity does not understand, and I don't believe that humanity will ever fully understand anything. Meaning there will always be room for a "God gap" that Science will not be able to fill.

Now onto your second argument: The Problem of Evil.

That opening quote by Epicurus has long bothered me, for this simple reason: It's bullsh*t.
To those easily persuaded, it sounds genius, of course. But actually it's logically unsound. According to classic Theistic reasoning, God does not prevent evil because He gives humanity freedom of choice--which means if somebody wants to be evil, that's their prerogative.
But here's what it all comes down to: the repercussions of the acts of the evil person. He can be evil, sure, but when his time comes, as it inevitably will, he will face God's justice.
Which means, in answer ole Ep's query, "Why call him God?" Because he is a just ruler, not a biased tyrant. That's why.
Because he created us as flesh and blood human beings with the ability to make mistakes, not robots who serve him unquestionably. That's why.

"1. If an all-powerful and perfectly good god exists, then evil does not.
2. There is evil in the world.
3. Therefore, an all-powerful and perfectly good god does not exist."

My following and final rebuttal is in response to your "complex formulation", as well.

I would propose the Yin-and-Yang theory for this one. If there is good in the world, there must also be evil. It's logical. God could not be perfectly good if there weren't anything else for him to be. He is good because he chose not to be evil--which, by the way, was totally up to him. Good people are rewarded with Heaven because they chose not to be evil. None of this could be possible if evil did not exist.

Now, you're wondering, "How could evil exist in the first place?" It did not come into the world through God, but through us. He gave us the freedom of choice--theoretically, we could have obeyed every order he gave, never sinning. But instead we chose to eat from the apple, bringing evil and sin into the world.
"But God created Satan!" you might say. Again, you're wrong. God created an angel with the ability to make his own choices. Lucifer became Satan through his own errors, not God's.
"But God knew what he would become!" you might say. Yes, he did. But again, that was Satan's decision to make. God would not prevent him from making it, since he gives us all the freedom of choice.

Thanks for the debate so far! It's been very entertaining.
Debate Round No. 2
Magic8000

Pro

Thanks Con.

A.N.C

I'll summarize my opponents main points. It's easier on the readers and on me when refuting

1, God the entity and God the word are separate

2, God is understood and experienced

3, Alien analogy

4, Logic is relative

5, Attack on the perfection justification

6, God and the Universe

7, Meaninglessness and Atheism

1, God the word and the entity.

The only way Con can make this objection is if he misunderstands what a word is. A word can't just be any jumble of letters, a word is

“A unit of language, consisting of one or more spoken sounds or their written representation, that functions as a principal carrier of meaning” [1].

You can't refer to something as being within what we experience without trying simultaneously to make it a word. When you're saying God is “X” you're attempting to assign a word to it. If Con's statement here is true, then it's self defeating. How can Con say the word God is different from the entity without actually using “God” to explain it? You're analogy with humans is false. Since there's no way to actually define God. There's no dispute on what to call it, the dispute is that you can't call it!

2, God is understood and experienced

“You don't have to be omnipotent, omniscient, or omnibenevolent to understand or experience God.”

This is a misunderstanding of the argument. The argument is about defining God. Since God's properties aren't meaningful then neither is the being which they're being prescribed to. How do you actually know you're experiencing God if you don't know what “God” means?

Believers claim all the time that they understand what God is doing in their lives. They also claimed to have experienced him during prayer or worship.

Again, the argument is about defining God. Not that people can't understand or think they understand what God is doing.

How can you say you experience God if we have no understanding or experience of the attributes that make up God? How do you distinguish it from just something like psychosis, delusion or wishful thinking? This is also irrelevant, as to give something meaning, it must be objective. We can't subjectively define something by subjective personal experiences. Would you conclude a “zsgarbub” is meaningful if I claim to have a personal subjective experience with it? If you really did have an experience with this thing called “God”, you still must meaningfully define it! If believers are the only ones who understand and experience God then how is Con going to prove there's reasons to believe in God. You would already have to believe in it to get to have a definition.

3, Alien analogy

Con gives an analogy as an attempting to give us a better understanding of his argument 2.

An alien with one eye wouldn't need two in order to understand how we see; nor does he need to understand us in order to experience us.

Fallacy of false analogy. An alien would still have an eye to get a basic meaningful understanding of how humans see with two eyes. It's also a misunderstanding of P2. The premise is talking about reference for meaning, not actually understanding the specific thing. One need not understand something in order for it to have meaning. That's why I included experience.


Certainly he might not understand if I were to punch him in the face, but that would not stop him from experiencing the pain; however, he could also understand just fine. He could have just urinated on my shoe, in which case my resulting attack would not have been totally unexpected.

False analogy and a category mistake fallacy. The argument is about defining words, not events.

4, Logic is relative

This is by far the strangest objection I've ever seen to this argument

Con states if P1 was logically proven then religion would've been disproven long ago. However no matter how much evidence there is of something, someone can deny it. Especially if it goes against something very personal to them -religion-.

Con's argument holds no weight, because there's no argument. All Con does is quote someone and accepts it. Con hasn't gave any reasons to believe logic is relative. The person Con quoted is a novelist and screenwriter [2]. Why should we trust what he says on philosophical matters just on his word? The book that's being quoted from -A Prayer for Owen Meany- is a story about miracles that happen to a boy after he hits a foul ball [3]. Nothing to do with logic or philosophy.

Furthermore, there's many reasons to show logic isn't relative. Logic is used in math [4], computer science [5], and language [6]. Does Con think these things are subjective? Does Con think that just disbelieving in math makes it untrue?

5, Attack on the perfection justification

Since God is the ultimate perfect being, it would make perfection meaningless when applied to God. The perfection we understand and experience is within our imperfect selves. This is exactly what was shown above this, which was ignored by Con.

6, God and the Universe

The agreed definition of God is “The Tri Omni Creator of the Universe.” It's a contradiction to say God created the Universe, but always existed within the Universe. God couldn't create something that he was already existing in. It's like saying you can lift a chair above your head while you're sitting in it. If Con's objection is valid, my argument would still work. Since God would still exist outside of this dimension which we know and understand.

7, Meaninglessness and Atheism

I already showed how the two were related. God being meaningless would disprove the statement “God exists” however there's nothing wrong with the atheist assuming meaning for argument's sake to use other arguments against the existence of God. The atheist can do this without problem because they already lack the belief in God. The theist can't do this since they're basing their beliefs on God having meaning.

Con never actually goes after the justifications of P1 as quoted by Michal Martin and George Smith.

The Problem of Evil.

Con's response can be summarized in one broad point.

1, Free will

Con gives us the free will defense. However why couldn't God make man in such a way that he would always freely choose good? If God is omnipotent he would be able to do such a thing. Two other questions can be raised.

Is there evil in heaven?

And

Is there free will in heaven?

I'll expand on this when Con answers these two.

Even with free will we're still limited. For example, many things can be done to a building

We can

1, Paint the building

2, Pee on the building

3, Punch the building

However we can't

4, Jump over the building

5, Turn the building into an invisible pink unicorn

6, Lift the building above my head

Does the inability to do 4-6 violate free will? Why couldn't God put evil in the same category as 4-6?

Con says there must be a Yin-Yang conservation of good and evil. He said it was logical, even though logic is suppose to be relative. His argument is that God must have evil in order to say somethings good, like God. However this would mean in order for God to be eternally good, there would also have to be eternal evil. According to Con evil came into existence when A&E sinned. Would this mean that God wasn't good until they sinned? Since evil must exist in order to call something good.

Also Epicurus' question “Why call him God?” was only to the response that God isn't able or willing. Not to the route you took.

Adam and Eve

Con says Adam & Eve are the reason why evil is in the world. However were Adam and Eve perfect? If so, then they couldn't become imperfect. Since it would say what is perfect wasn't really perfect. Yet if A+E weren't created perfectly then God would basically be baking a cake and yelling at it for not tasting good. It would also mean God brought about an imperfection.

Con hasn't made a case for his proposition. The burden of proof was agreed to be shared in R1.

The resolution is affirmed

Sources

[1] http://www.debate.org...

^ All within there.

DemosthenesLocke

Con

1. Let's start with this one: "A word can't be just any jumble of letters."

What would you say a word is, then? A nicely organized set of letters? I hate to break it to you, my friend, but a word is exactly that: a jumble of letters. The thing a word represents does not give it meaning--we do.

"How can Con say the word God is different from the entity without using the word 'God' to explain it? You're (cringe) analogy with humans is false."

Where to begin.
Alright, if you didn't catch what I was saying in the above argument, let me emphasize this for the third time this debate: God the word and God the entity are separate.The word God represents the entity, but they are only one and the same to us. The word only has meaning... to us.
Which means the word God is not universal. God's not defined by the word that we humans ascribe to him. For example, my real name is Alec, but I can assure you that I am not really "the leader of mankind", as the meaning of my name would have you believe.

This all's irrelevant unless one remembers the point you're trying to make in this particular argument: Because the word's meaningless (it's not), God is meaningless.
Really, you've already made my argument for me: "A word can't be be just any jumble of letters, a word is: A unit of language, consisting of one or more spoken words, that functions as a principle carrier of meaning.'"
To us, the word God has meaning. Those jumble of letters which make up a word have meaning because we have ascribed meaning to it. Which means your argument is invalid, because the word God clearly has meaning, otherwise it would not be a word.

Let's look at the second point you made: "... there's no way to define God."

Well. "The being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness who is worshipped as creator and ruler of the universe." --Merriam Webster
Apparently somebody figured it out.

I don't really understand this: "There's no dispute on what to call it, the dispute is that you can't call it!" God. God. God. I'm calling it God. As have you, despite the fact that the word carries no meaning. Yet apparently it does, since when one of us uses the word God, it communicates meaning.

2. Skip for space

"How can you say you experience God if we have no understanding or experience of the attributes that make up God? How do you distinguish it from just something like psychosis, delusion or wishful thinking?"

Billions of people claim to understand and experience God. I think we can agree that the majority of these people are not psychotic or delusional. Wishful thinking? Possibly. But believers aren't stupid. If their faith is based on wishful thinking, 1. it won't last long, and 2. they'll recognize it eventually, and when that time comes, I'm sure they'd seek deeper truth. You can't convince yourself with wishful thinking for very long.

In response to the first question, we know plenty of the attributes that make up God. The Bible is crammed full of them. When people have a "supernatural" experience, they check to see if it lines up with Biblical descriptions.

"We can't subjectively definte something by subjective personal experiences. Would you conclude a 'zsgarbub' is meaningful if I claim to have a personal subjective experience with it?"

No, I would not conclude that it's meaningful--but that's not the point; the point is, it's meaningful to YOU. However, more than one person has claimed to have had a "personal subjective experience" with God. Which means to millions of people, the word God has meaning.

"If believers are the only ones who understand and experience God then how is Con going to prove there's reasons to believe in God."

1. I never said I was going to prove there's reasons to believe in God. However, since it's apparently expected of me, I will do so further in the next round.
Now, remember that people weren't BORN believers. They obviously had to come to believe in God like everyone else. Which means millions of people have all come to the same conclusion: "There is a God."
That's a pretty powerful reason for you, right there. Furthermore, there MUST be reasons to believe in God, otherwise there wouldn't be so many intelligent folk who do, and you would not be trying to discount those reasons right now in this debate.

3. "One need not understand something in order for it to have meaning. That's why I included experience."

Well, isn't this a memorable moment.
I'm sorry, but aren't you the same person arguing that in order to understand something, you must also experience it? Isn't that how you made a supposed "fallacy" out of my alien analogy? Hmmm.

In reference to my alien analogy, you said, "The argument is about defining words, not events." But wait, aren't you the same person that said in order to define a word, you must first experience it? How can you experience something without it being an event? o.0

4. "Logic is relative." Google that phrase. See how many hits you get. Look at all the people giving formulas to explain how logic is relative.
I chose the quote by John Irving because I figured you would take it better from somebody higher up than me. Apparently I was wrong. But if you're saying that wisdom can't come from novels or movies, then you're sorely mistaken.

"Furthermore, there's many reasons to show logic isn't relative. Logic is in math... etc. Does Con think these things are subjective? Does Con think disbelieving in math makes it untrue?"

Does Pro think disbelieving in the word God makes it meaningless? You're misunderstanding the phrase "logic is relative". In the case of math, logic would be relative to math. I wasn't trying to encourage you to disbelieve in math, however.
I was using the phrase to point out that, since religion IS subjective, logic IS relative in the case of believing in God. So simply because you find it logical to disbelieve, doesn't mean other people will.

5. Skip for space--coincidentally, the same reason I skipped Martin and Smith.

6. Pro fails to understand both my point and classic Theistic reasoning. Christianity states that God created everything out of nothing. Your metaphor with the human attempting to lift a chair over his head is invalid--God is not a human, and therefore is not limited in the way humans are.

7. Skip

"Why couldn't God make man in such a way that he would always freely choose good?"

Do you even realize what you just asked me? If he made us so that we couldn't freely choose evil as well, it wouldn't be free will. It wouldn't be a CHOICE if there wasn't something else to CHOOSE.

"Even with free will we're still limited. For example, many things can be done to a building... however, we can't jump over the building."

If evil were not an option--similar to jumping over a building--then we'd have no choice but to be good. I.E., the opposite of free will.

"According to Con evil came into existence when A&E sinned. Would this mean God wasn't good until they sinned? Since evil must exist ... to call something good."

Here's a picture to help you understand:
There's a field called Evil. It's pretty obscure and nobody bothers with it.
One day, Satan says, "I'm going through that field."
Everyone's like, "Sit down Satan, you're drunk."
He insists he's going through that field.
Some others stand up. "We'll go with you."
You know the story from there.
Then, one day, Eve realizes there's a path that leads through the field of Evil. "What's down there?" she asks Satan.
"Enlightenment," he says.
"Lead the way," she says.

Do you understand? And as time goes on, the path grows wider and wider.

"Epicurus' question "Why call him God?" was only to the response that God isn't able or willing, not the route you took."

You clearly misunderstood the route I took. God judges actions after they happen. Epicurus' question is a trap, dear friend.

"Con says A&E are the reason why evil is in the world. However were Adam and Eve perfect? If so, then they couldn't become imperfect..." etc., etc., general rant.

Please provide your source for believing that Adam and Eve were perfect.

That's all.
Debate Round No. 3
Magic8000

Pro


Thanks Con.


A.N.C


1, God the word and the entity.


What I mean by a word not being any jumble of letters is, you can't just write anything like “ruhbr” and call it a word. A word must have meaning. A word is a jumble of letters, but it's not just any jumble.


Arg! I don't know how that amateur grammar mistake passed me! Apologies.


I'm not sure what Con is saying here. It seems like he's saying that “God” can be subjectively defined. I'll expand on that in the next section. Con here seems to just be asserting “God” has meaning.


Con then claims to have defined God, but this definition was already debunked in my opening statement.


In the first place, when terms like “is loving”, “is forgiving”, and “brings about” are applied to God, they seem to mean something very different from what they mean when they are applied to human beings. For example, when we speak of a mother as being loving, we are referring in part to her behavior, and in particular the way she responds to her children. When we say that Jones brought about a fire, we are referring to certain of his bodily actions, such as his carelessly throwing a match onto a pile of paper. But when we say God is loving or God brought about a miracle, we cannot be referring to the behavior or bodily action of God, for He has no body. -Michael Martin


When you define “God” you're referring to something other than we know. It's like saying a “carmfn” can dance, but it doesn't have legs or a body. Or that a sound wave is brown. You wouldn't be referring to dancing or brown, making the meaningless. This is where my argument comes from when saying the dispute is that you can't even call this thing “God” since the attributes are meaningless. Your (yay the right one) analogy was disputing what to call a human.


2, God is understood and experienced


Con rules out psychosis and delusion just because the majority claims to experience God. This is a logical fallacy known as the argumentum ad populum. Con rules out wishful thinking by assuming that believers won't think wishfully. This is begging the question, the believer wouldn't come to these conclusions if they were wishfully thinking in the first place. Wishful thinking doesn't necessarily mean someone is stupid, it just means someone is wishing that what they want confirms reality.


Again the meaning of these attributes were refuted in my opening statement. They all refer to human context.


This argument is a red herring. Experience God in a feeling sense isn't experiencing God's attributes. Con says that God is subjectively defined. However if true, to me and many others God is meaningless. If such a thing is meaningless then one can't hold the position “God exists”. Meaning there does in fact exist a valid reason to disbelieve in God. However does other religious experiences prove a valid reason to believe? No, because many different mutually exclusive religions claim to experience God [1][2][3]


God was defined as “The Tri Omni Creator of the Universe”. Con in accepting must try to give this meaning. Appealing to different subjective definitions is then talking about something else other than the God we agreed upon.


Yes Con, you were suppose to provide reasons to believe in God. I said this in R1, 2 and 3.


R1 : “BOP is shared”


“Round 2: My argument + Con's arguments and rebuttals.”


R2: “Now to Con for his arguments and rebuttals.”


R3: I specifically said “Con hasn't made a case for his proposition. The burden of proof was agreed to be shared in R1.”


It wasn't “apparently” expected. Con attempts to prove there's reasons to believe because millions of people believe. This again is an argumentum ad populum and is just saying there exists reasons to believe, this is far from actually giving a reason. The debate resolution isn't “There's reasons to disbelieve in God”, it's “There's valid reasons to disbelieve in God”


Someone can believe in God for a reason that isn't valid.


3, Alien analogy


Con misunderstands what I'm saying in this one.


Where have I said you have to understand something to experience it? I specifically said


“Some attack premise 2 by stating something that is meaningful, but that we don't really have full understanding of. The premise isn't that we must understand and experience everything, just that something must refer to what we understand or experience in order to be meaningful.”


I've said that you must understand or experience the attributes of God in order to experience it. If that's what you're referring to, I was saying in order to realize you're actually experiencing this thing called God you must know what it is (attributes) first. It's like saying “I experienced a cehuh, I don't know what it is, but I experienced it.”


Con commits a strawman. Experiencing an event to give words meaning is different from actually defining with words, an event. I can define what a concert is without defining an experience of something happening at that concert.


4, Logic is relative


Con tells me to Google the phase. Con still gives no reasons to believe this or source for what “formulas” he's referring to. Logic is the study of what is valid and what isn't [4]. Regardless of your point of view, you still need to provide evidence. This is what I did.


I wouldn't get philosophical knowledge from movies or novels. I would prefer books on logic, philosophy, and debating. Even if you can get knowledge from novels, you still need reasons why the wisdom is true.


What do you mean by “logic would be relative to math”? 2 + 2 equals 4 regardless of any point of view. Same with linguistics and computer science. Same with the philosophy of religion.


5, Skipped


6, God and the Universe


Con claims I'm misunderstanding what he's saying, but doesn't explain how. If God created everything out of nothing, then that would include the Universe. Con says God isn't limited in the way humans are. Would this mean that God can create the Universe while simultaneously existing in the Universe? What I was saying is that the Universe would include any dimension. If you define the Universe as including some other dimension, then saying God exists in there would still fall under the logical contradiction. My argument still stands, God would still exist outside of a knowable dimension.



The Problem of Evil.



1, Free will


There can still be a choice between doing good or not acting at all. Con just above said “God is not a human, and therefore is not limited in the way humans are.” So if God was omnipotent, why can't he do both?


Con ignores my questions about heaven and free will. He also doesn't touch upon my building analogy. Who decided that good and evil are inseparable? The building example showed we're still have limited free will. You can make the same argument, if we can't lift the building above our heads, our only choice would be to act on it. However we can choose to be passive.


Con then says there was a field called evil that was ambulated into. However who made this field? This also contradicts Con's previous statement


“Now, you're wondering, "How could evil exist in the first place?" It did not come into the world through God, but through us. He gave us the freedom of choice--theoretically, we could have obeyed every order he gave, never sinning. But instead we chose to eat from the apple, bringing evil and sin into the world.”


My objection from eternal good and evil was unanswered.


You clearly misunderstood the route I took. God judges actions after they happen. Epicurus' question is a trap, dear friend.


How did I misunderstand it? Epicurus was responding to someone who was God isn't able or willing. This would also contradict two of the properties of God.


Adam and Eve


Con misunderstands this argument. Read over it again. Even if you say Adam and Eve weren't perfect, I still have an argument there.


Sources



[1] http://www.debate.org...


^ All within there.


DemosthenesLocke

Con

DemosthenesLocke forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
Magic8000

Pro

Conclusion

Con never provided a valid reason for a God belief in round 2. This violates the debate structure. His only argument in R3 was that there was reasons because many people believe. This is a fallacy of appeal to majority and isn't showing that there's valid reasons for a God belief, just that many people think there's reasons, not necessarily valid. Con never really understood my first argument, he kept appealing to personal experiences. However as I showed, these aren't defining the attributes of something. He also claimed God is subjectively defined, meaning he couldn't provide an argument for God. Tons of things were dropped by Con in my second argument. He flip flopped on how evil came into existence, and never answered my objections directly. Finally, Con closed his account making him forfeit. Violating rule one, making me the winner.

Vote Pro
DemosthenesLocke

Con

DemosthenesLocke forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Magic8000 3 years ago
Magic8000
It does seem my quote was actually from Hume and not Epicurus. Never knew that quote has disputed origins.
Posted by Vulpes_Inculta 3 years ago
Vulpes_Inculta
An anthropologist I know had this to say...

'There's nothing to flip over.

The 'Epicurean Paradox' is demonstrably a 4th-century Christian satire of a position that Epicurus himself never held, and never argued in favour of. This is common knowledge to anyone familiar with Classical-era Christian apologia. Certainly it's not evidence of 'atheists kicking [profanity] since 341 BC', as you asserted, since it was written by a Christian in c.300 AD.

That you're using it to support an atheistic viewpoint is therefore deeply ironic, and no doubt highly entertaining to those of us on NSG familiar with Classical history regardless of whether we're atheists or theists.

As I noted earlier, you'd be far safer if you restricted yourself to instead citing David Hume's similar - but not identical - point in his Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, which offers far better support for the atheist position you think you're making.'

He was speaking to somebody else, of course.
Posted by Vulpes_Inculta 3 years ago
Vulpes_Inculta
"Is [God] willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then is he malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?"- Epicurus

That actually didn't come from Epicurus.
Posted by ConservativePolitico 3 years ago
ConservativePolitico
Too easy. You can justify "good" reason to believe in anything really.
Posted by wiploc 3 years ago
wiploc
The dictionary defines "disbelieve" two ways:
1. Not to believe something is true.
2. To believe that something is not true.

I suggest that you clarify which meaning you intend in your resolution.
Posted by Magic8000 3 years ago
Magic8000
Yes. Usually I'll debate just a generic creator idea, but for this one I want to debate the Tri Omni version.
Posted by Valladarex 3 years ago
Valladarex
Does it necessarily need to be the Tri-Omni version of God?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Vulpes_Inculta 3 years ago
Vulpes_Inculta
Magic8000DemosthenesLockeTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Con forfeited. I'd award arguments as well, but that's not necessary given that nobody will be awarding any points to Con.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
Magic8000DemosthenesLockeTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: ff.