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Atheism vs Christianity: The Moral Argument

Dan4reason
Posts: 1,168
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1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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1/28/2013 12:26:11 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

You'd have to establish that God wasn't just the BEST explanation, but the ONLY explanation.
Assistant moderator to airmax1227. PM me with any questions or concerns!
Nur-Ab-Sal
Posts: 1,637
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1/28/2013 12:28:01 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:26:11 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

You'd have to establish that God wasn't just the BEST explanation, but the ONLY explanation.

Why the only?
Genesis I. And God created man to his own image: to the image of God he created him: male and female he created them.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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1/28/2013 12:34:09 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:28:01 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:26:11 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

You'd have to establish that God wasn't just the BEST explanation, but the ONLY explanation.

Why the only?

Because if there are ANY other legitimately possible explanations, then you cannot construct a completely valid syllogism.

If God is not the only one, then the construction would have to be something like:

If morality is objective and absolute, God having existence is the most likely reason.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God most likely exists.

Think of it this way:

Let's imagine that when a car makes a "KERTHYUMP" noise, the best explanation is that the head gasket blew. However, it's also (just barely) possible (though unlikely) that the fuel pump imploded. While the head gasket scenario is considerably more likely, one cannot say definitively that IF a car makes a "KERTHYMP", THEN the head gasket blew, unless one has definitively ruled out the fuel pump implosion.
Assistant moderator to airmax1227. PM me with any questions or concerns!
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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1/28/2013 12:45:26 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:42:12 AM, Wallstreetatheist wrote:
This is almost as bad as the ontological argument.

Now, now, let's give him some time. It's not THAT bad yet; but then, the argument's premises have not been fully expanded. So it might.
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Nur-Ab-Sal
Posts: 1,637
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1/28/2013 12:46:35 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:34:09 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:28:01 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:26:11 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

You'd have to establish that God wasn't just the BEST explanation, but the ONLY explanation.

Why the only?

Because if there are ANY other legitimately possible explanations, then you cannot construct a completely valid syllogism.

If God is not the only one, then the construction would have to be something like:

If morality is objective and absolute, God having existence is the most likely reason.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God most likely exists.


Think of it this way:

Let's imagine that when a car makes a "KERTHYUMP" noise, the best explanation is that the head gasket blew. However, it's also (just barely) possible (though unlikely) that the fuel pump imploded. While the head gasket scenario is considerably more likely, one cannot say definitively that IF a car makes a "KERTHYMP", THEN the head gasket blew, unless one has definitively ruled out the fuel pump implosion.

I agree with what you're saying (concerning probability). But what's wrong with the conclusion "God most likely exists"? Obviously it's not as persuasive as a set of premises which lead to "God exists," but it's still a persuasive argument nonetheless.
Genesis I. And God created man to his own image: to the image of God he created him: male and female he created them.
Nur-Ab-Sal
Posts: 1,637
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1/28/2013 12:47:10 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:45:26 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:42:12 AM, Wallstreetatheist wrote:
This is almost as bad as the ontological argument.

Now, now, let's give him some time. It's not THAT bad yet; but then, the argument's premises have not been fully expanded. So it might.

Give who time...?
Genesis I. And God created man to his own image: to the image of God he created him: male and female he created them.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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1/28/2013 12:48:53 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:47:10 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:45:26 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:42:12 AM, Wallstreetatheist wrote:
This is almost as bad as the ontological argument.

Now, now, let's give him some time. It's not THAT bad yet; but then, the argument's premises have not been fully expanded. So it might.

Give who time...?

Well, Dan4Reason, I suppose; isn't it technically his argument?
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Nur-Ab-Sal
Posts: 1,637
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1/28/2013 12:49:38 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:48:53 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:47:10 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:45:26 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:42:12 AM, Wallstreetatheist wrote:
This is almost as bad as the ontological argument.

Now, now, let's give him some time. It's not THAT bad yet; but then, the argument's premises have not been fully expanded. So it might.

Give who time...?


Well, Dan4Reason, I suppose; isn't it technically his argument?

Dan4Reason is agnostic (or at least his profile declares it) and the moral argument is as old as theistic philosophy.
Genesis I. And God created man to his own image: to the image of God he created him: male and female he created them.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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1/28/2013 12:49:42 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:46:35 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:34:09 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:28:01 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:26:11 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

You'd have to establish that God wasn't just the BEST explanation, but the ONLY explanation.

Why the only?

Because if there are ANY other legitimately possible explanations, then you cannot construct a completely valid syllogism.

If God is not the only one, then the construction would have to be something like:

If morality is objective and absolute, God having existence is the most likely reason.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God most likely exists.


Think of it this way:

Let's imagine that when a car makes a "KERTHYUMP" noise, the best explanation is that the head gasket blew. However, it's also (just barely) possible (though unlikely) that the fuel pump imploded. While the head gasket scenario is considerably more likely, one cannot say definitively that IF a car makes a "KERTHYMP", THEN the head gasket blew, unless one has definitively ruled out the fuel pump implosion.

I agree with what you're saying (concerning probability). But what's wrong with the conclusion "God most likely exists"? Obviously it's not as persuasive as a set of premises which lead to "God exists," but it's still a persuasive argument nonetheless.

Perhaps. But, of course, all of that has to be established first; I was just pointing out a possible construction flaw.
Assistant moderator to airmax1227. PM me with any questions or concerns!
Nur-Ab-Sal
Posts: 1,637
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1/28/2013 12:51:36 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:49:42 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:46:35 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:34:09 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:28:01 AM, Nur-Ab-Sal wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:26:11 AM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

You'd have to establish that God wasn't just the BEST explanation, but the ONLY explanation.

Why the only?

Because if there are ANY other legitimately possible explanations, then you cannot construct a completely valid syllogism.

If God is not the only one, then the construction would have to be something like:

If morality is objective and absolute, God having existence is the most likely reason.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God most likely exists.


Think of it this way:

Let's imagine that when a car makes a "KERTHYUMP" noise, the best explanation is that the head gasket blew. However, it's also (just barely) possible (though unlikely) that the fuel pump imploded. While the head gasket scenario is considerably more likely, one cannot say definitively that IF a car makes a "KERTHYMP", THEN the head gasket blew, unless one has definitively ruled out the fuel pump implosion.

I agree with what you're saying (concerning probability). But what's wrong with the conclusion "God most likely exists"? Obviously it's not as persuasive as a set of premises which lead to "God exists," but it's still a persuasive argument nonetheless.

Perhaps. But, of course, all of that has to be established first; I was just pointing out a possible construction flaw.

I understand. I don't think it's meant to be a traditional deductive argument in the sense that it leads to a certain conclusion (unless the certainty is that "God most likely exists.")
Genesis I. And God created man to his own image: to the image of God he created him: male and female he created them.
DakotaKrafick
Posts: 1,517
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1/28/2013 2:29:12 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

Whatever warrant could be used to support the first premise could also be used to invalidate the second premise by circular logic. For example, if the only possible way we can agree morality can be objective and absolute is if it's commanded by God, then the second premise would be implicitly stating that God's commands (and therefore God) exist.

The argument might as well be read:

P1: If God's hands exist, then God exists.
P2: God's hands exist.
C: Therefore, God exists.

This one is obviously circular, but only a bit more so than the last.
FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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1/28/2013 2:45:07 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
The accumulated apex of my experiences of thought, emotion and all manner of justifications and their logical, linguistic and transcendent criteria for intellectually processing them, which have brought into focus all of my skepticisms to the great Truth of the Lord, have just been slain asunder by this most auspicious of theological idiom.

Oooooh, glory.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
YYW
Posts: 36,391
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1/28/2013 3:19:52 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
People formulate arguments to "prove" the existence of God because they believe, as they are taught, that only that which is reasonable (and by reasonable, I mean determinable through a process of logical deduction) can be true. Truth, though, is a specious term insomuch as what that word means varies in the context in which it is used.

This problem is especially invoked when self proclaimed rationalists "demand" that God's existence be established in that way, which is itself an absurd demand. What's worse is when Christians (or religious individuals of any order) try to satisfy that demand.

To believe in God is first and foremost to accept as the truth that which cannot be proven by empirical, testable, repeatable means. It is to accept in belief that which is beyond proof, that which cannot be deduced, that which cannot be proven. That is, by definition, irrational. The problem, though, is the belief that somehow the irrationality of faith in anything not of this world somehow delegitimizes faith itself.

When atheists demand proof of God's existence, they are asking to prove that which cannot be proven by the mechanisms of establishing validity at the disposal of man. We cannot conduct tests or experiments to determine if God is real, and yet to do so would be the only "rational" way of establishing God's existence. This is where the act of faith comes in.

Faith itself has meaning and value only because it is belief in that which cannot be seen, experienced, tested, falsified -for to believe in that which can be empirically proven requires no faith. It is verifiable fact. It is precisely there that faith and reason part ways, and necessarily so.

We can reason on the basis of faith, form arguments about the meaning of scripture, etc. This is referred to as theology. This is the "reasoned" aspect of faith, but it is reason grounded on the irrational acceptance of the existence of God. Faith wanting of reason means precisely that; we seek to understand, but must begin from a position of trust in the unverifiable.

This is the kind of thing that irritates most Christians because they cannot bring themselves to accept, even though this is what they have done, that their faith is irrational. They create reasons that they think prove the validity of God's existence because they cannot reconcile the fact that to believe in God is to deny the absolute validity of human reason. But that's what they're taught, so that's what they hold dear, that's what they will live and die by, and that's all fine and well because in the end it is inconsequential. That one has faith is what is significant, not that one understands how they came to have it.

But the argument from morality is, like all others that attempt to prove god's existence, pointless. It's just as bad as the KCA, because like the KCA it does and can not do what it purports to do -that is it cannot prove the existence of God. To believe in God is to accept as true what cannot be proven, which is at once irrational and the very definition of faith.

I have tried to explain the difference between positive and normative claims, but I think most people have no idea what the conceptual disparities indicate. Those are adjectives to describe mutually exclusive concepts; just like faith and reason. For anyone who is interested, I'd be happy to go further, but I doubt anyone is.

I would suggest, though, that this is the only way that one can be both intellectually honest and believe in God at the same time. It's the answer to Chris Hitchen's demand of proof for God's existence. It's the response to the KCA and this -rather preposterous- argument from morality. It's the logical isolation of concepts that do and can not work together, and it's totally insignificant because, again, how one comes to have faith is irrelevant to eternal salvation -it is only that one has faith which matters.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
Posts: 36,391
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1/28/2013 3:30:06 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 3:19:52 AM, YYW wrote:
People formulate arguments to "prove" the existence of God because they believe, as they are taught, that only that which is reasonable (and by reasonable, I mean determinable through a process of logical deduction) can be true. Truth, though, is a specious term insomuch as what that word means varies in the context in which it is used.

This problem is especially invoked when self proclaimed rationalists "demand" that God's existence be established in that way, which is itself an absurd demand. What's worse is when Christians (or religious individuals of any order) try to satisfy that demand.

To believe in God is first and foremost to accept as the truth that which cannot be proven by empirical, testable, repeatable means. It is to accept in belief that which is beyond proof, that which cannot be deduced, that which cannot be proven. That is, by definition, irrational. The problem, though, is the belief that somehow the irrationality of faith in anything not of this world somehow delegitimizes faith itself.

When atheists demand proof of God's existence, they are asking to prove that which cannot be proven by the mechanisms of establishing validity at the disposal of man. We cannot conduct tests or experiments to determine if God is real, and yet to do so would be the only "rational" way of establishing God's existence. This is where the act of faith comes in.

Faith itself has meaning and value only because it is belief in that which cannot be seen, experienced, tested, falsified -for to believe in that which can be empirically proven requires no faith. It is verifiable fact. It is precisely there that faith and reason part ways, and necessarily so.

We can reason on the basis of faith, form arguments about the meaning of scripture, etc. This is referred to as theology. This is the "reasoned" aspect of faith, but it is reason grounded on the irrational acceptance of the existence of God. Faith wanting of reason means precisely that; we seek to understand, but must begin from a position of trust in the unverifiable.

This is the kind of thing that irritates most Christians because they cannot bring themselves to accept, even though this is what they have done, that their faith is irrational. They create reasons that they think prove the validity of God's existence because they cannot reconcile the fact that to believe in God is to deny the absolute validity of human reason. But that's what they're taught, so that's what they hold dear, that's what they will live and die by, and that's all fine and well because in the end it is inconsequential. That one has faith is what is significant, not that one understands how they came to have it.

But the argument from morality is, like all others that attempt to prove god's existence, pointless. It's just as bad as the KCA, because like the KCA it does and can not do what it purports to do -that is it cannot prove the existence of God. To believe in God is to accept as true what cannot be proven, which is at once irrational and the very definition of faith.

I have tried to explain the difference between positive and normative claims, but I think most people have no idea what the conceptual disparities indicate. Those are adjectives to describe mutually exclusive concepts; just like faith and reason. For anyone who is interested, I'd be happy to go further, but I doubt anyone is.

I would suggest, though, that this is the only way that one can be both intellectually honest and believe in God at the same time. It's the answer to Chris Hitchen's demand of proof for God's existence. It's the response to the KCA and this -rather preposterous- argument from morality. It's the logical isolation of concepts that do and can not work together, and it's totally insignificant because, again, how one comes to have faith is irrelevant to eternal salvation -it is only that one has faith which matters.

I came to this conclusion, btw. after I read Genealogy of Morals and Beyond Good and Evil as an undergraduate. I had a professor tell me that Nietzsche was the ultimate test of one's Christianity, and I came to understand why he meant that. If you can read (especially GM) and keep your faith, then it's never going away because that is the best argument against Christianity that has ever been written. It is furthermore far more damaging even to the very notion of faith than any argument I have ever seen that is designed to ground, or otherwise prove the truth of faith. The answer is to reframe one's understanding of what faith and reason both are and what they do.
Tsar of DDO
wiploc
Posts: 1,485
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1/28/2013 10:31:14 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

The form is valid, but there is no reason to accept the premises. In fact, the "objective and absolute" phrase is not necessarily meaningful. When theists use this argument, they pivot on that phrase, using it two different ways, hoping we don't notice the shift. The argument is based partly on this equivocation.

The other basis of the argument is the hope that we won't notice that there's no reason to believe the first premise. When it is challenged, they don't even try to give a justification. Rather, they repeat the premise, or say, "But he's god!" or, "You just don't get it." They have no justification or explanation for the claim at all, just the hope that we won't notice.
tkubok
Posts: 5,044
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1/28/2013 1:43:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 3:19:52 AM, YYW wrote:
People formulate arguments to "prove" the existence of God because they believe, as they are taught, that only that which is reasonable (and by reasonable, I mean determinable through a process of logical deduction) can be true. Truth, though, is a specious term insomuch as what that word means varies in the context in which it is used.
Not in the context of Logic.
This problem is especially invoked when self proclaimed rationalists "demand" that God's existence be established in that way, which is itself an absurd demand. What's worse is when Christians (or religious individuals of any order) try to satisfy that demand.

To believe in God is first and foremost to accept as the truth that which cannot be proven by empirical, testable, repeatable means. It is to accept in belief that which is beyond proof, that which cannot be deduced, that which cannot be proven. That is, by definition, irrational. The problem, though, is the belief that somehow the irrationality of faith in anything not of this world somehow delegitimizes faith itself.
Well, no, we are talking about logical syllogisms and not scientific evidence. You seem to have those two confused.
When atheists demand proof of God's existence, they are asking to prove that which cannot be proven by the mechanisms of establishing validity at the disposal of man. We cannot conduct tests or experiments to determine if God is real, and yet to do so would be the only "rational" way of establishing God's existence. This is where the act of faith comes in.

Again, more confusion between scientific evidence and logical syllogism.

However, why do you claim that this cannot be proven by experiments, tests, etc?

Faith itself has meaning and value only because it is belief in that which cannot be seen, experienced, tested, falsified -for to believe in that which can be empirically proven requires no faith. It is verifiable fact. It is precisely there that faith and reason part ways, and necessarily so.

So you cannot experience God? Then how do you know he exists?

We can reason on the basis of faith, form arguments about the meaning of scripture, etc. This is referred to as theology. This is the "reasoned" aspect of faith, but it is reason grounded on the irrational acceptance of the existence of God. Faith wanting of reason means precisely that; we seek to understand, but must begin from a position of trust in the unverifiable.

This is the kind of thing that irritates most Christians because they cannot bring themselves to accept, even though this is what they have done, that their faith is irrational. They create reasons that they think prove the validity of God's existence because they cannot reconcile the fact that to believe in God is to deny the absolute validity of human reason. But that's what they're taught, so that's what they hold dear, that's what they will live and die by, and that's all fine and well because in the end it is inconsequential. That one has faith is what is significant, not that one understands how they came to have it.

Why would you believe in something that you know is irrational?

But the argument from morality is, like all others that attempt to prove god's existence, pointless. It's just as bad as the KCA, because like the KCA it does and can not do what it purports to do -that is it cannot prove the existence of God. To believe in God is to accept as true what cannot be proven, which is at once irrational and the very definition of faith.

I have tried to explain the difference between positive and normative claims, but I think most people have no idea what the conceptual disparities indicate. Those are adjectives to describe mutually exclusive concepts; just like faith and reason. For anyone who is interested, I'd be happy to go further, but I doubt anyone is.

Sure, ill go further with you.
Ramshutu
Posts: 4,063
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1/28/2013 1:49:17 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

This argument fails the Chuck Norris Test.

Any logical argument involving God that remains logically valid when replacing the word God with Chuck Norris is automatically invalid.
drafterman
Posts: 18,870
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1/28/2013 1:50:13 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 10:31:14 AM, wiploc wrote:
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

The form is valid, but there is no reason to accept the premises. In fact, the "objective and absolute" phrase is not necessarily meaningful. When theists use this argument, they pivot on that phrase, using it two different ways, hoping we don't notice the shift. The argument is based partly on this equivocation.

Concise and to the point. +1 internet points.
http://en.wikipedia.org...


The other basis of the argument is the hope that we won't notice that there's no reason to believe the first premise. When it is challenged, they don't even try to give a justification. Rather, they repeat the premise, or say, "But he's god!" or, "You just don't get it." They have no justification or explanation for the claim at all, just the hope that we won't notice.
Dan4reason
Posts: 1,168
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1/28/2013 2:02:20 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

Now I will give my opinion on this often cited argument.

First, theists cannot really shows that morality is objective and absolute. I find that they usually try to make appeals to emotion. For example they might ask about rape. However to show that morality is objective and absolute, they need evidence. Even if they were able to give logic and evidence, then logic and evidence would be the basis of absolute morality not God and this leads to me second point.

If morality is objective, then why must it be based on God? This seems to be counter-intuitive. How can a person make something right or wrong? Isn't there some inherent logic that makes things right or wrong? Morality could be based on some reasoning or some factor in the world. Or it could be a necessary fact that is true by definition like mathematics. Unless someone can show that morality can be based in a God, then I will have to assume that such a point is unproven.
Wnope
Posts: 6,924
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1/28/2013 2:45:49 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

It's not a matter of God being the BEST explanation. Your argument fails if ANY explanation for objective morality other than God is possible.
Simple
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1/28/2013 3:11:22 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute? Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

The first part of the first sentence summarizes the entire argument.
"If morality is objective and absolute"
That is a very big IF.
In order for morality to be objective and absolute there could not possibly be a disagreement on what morality means.
Dan4reason
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1/28/2013 4:03:55 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 3:19:52 AM, YYW wrote:
This problem is especially invoked when self proclaimed rationalists "demand" that God's existence be established in that way, which is itself an absurd demand. What's worse is when Christians (or religious individuals of any order) try to satisfy that demand.

Rationalists ask for some rational reason to think that God exists. How is this an unreasonable demand? All I need is some reason that shows that God exists.

To believe in God is first and foremost to accept as the truth that which cannot be proven by empirical, testable, repeatable means. It is to accept in belief that which is beyond proof, that which cannot be deduced, that which cannot be proven. That is, by definition, irrational. The problem, though, is the belief that somehow the irrationality of faith in anything not of this world somehow delegitimizes faith itself.

When atheists demand proof of God's existence, they are asking to prove that which cannot be proven by the mechanisms of establishing validity at the disposal of man. We cannot conduct tests or experiments to determine if God is real, and yet to do so would be the only "rational" way of establishing God's existence. This is where the act of faith comes in.

Let me correct you. Atheists do not ask for proof of God. They are asking for something that shows that God exists. It can be something other than a formal proof or scientific evidence.

I do agree that there is no good way of showing that God exists. This does not make it all right to believe in God without evidence. It makes the existence of God a forever unanswerable question. For example, we may never know how many galaxies are in the universe. This does not make it valid for some people to assert that there are 1,537,273,833,845 galaxies without evidence.

Faith itself has meaning and value only because it is belief in that which cannot be seen, experienced, tested, falsified -for to believe in that which can be empirically proven requires no faith. It is verifiable fact. It is precisely there that faith and reason part ways, and necessarily so.

So faith parts ways with reason. So how can you be confident that what you have faith in is the truth?

We can reason on the basis of faith, form arguments about the meaning of scripture, etc. This is referred to as theology. This is the "reasoned" aspect of faith, but it is reason grounded on the irrational acceptance of the existence of God. Faith wanting of reason means precisely that; we seek to understand, but must begin from a position of trust in the unverifiable.

Trust is earned not given. I will not trust something unless it has earned my trust or will in the future earn my trust.

This is the kind of thing that irritates most Christians because they cannot bring themselves to accept, even though this is what they have done, that their faith is irrational. They create reasons that they think prove the validity of God's existence because they cannot reconcile the fact that to believe in God is to deny the absolute validity of human reason. But that's what they're taught, so that's what they hold dear, that's what they will live and die by, and that's all fine and well because in the end it is inconsequential. That one has faith is what is significant, not that one understands how they came to have it.

But the argument from morality is, like all others that attempt to prove god's existence, pointless. It's just as bad as the KCA, because like the KCA it does and can not do what it purports to do -that is it cannot prove the existence of God. To believe in God is to accept as true what cannot be proven, which is at once irrational and the very definition of faith.

I have tried to explain the difference between positive and normative claims, but I think most people have no idea what the conceptual disparities indicate. Those are adjectives to describe mutually exclusive concepts; just like faith and reason. For anyone who is interested, I'd be happy to go further, but I doubt anyone is.

I would suggest, though, that this is the only way that one can be both intellectually honest and believe in God at the same time. It's the answer to Chris Hitchen's demand of proof for God's existence. It's the response to the KCA and this -rather preposterous- argument from morality. It's the logical isolation of concepts that do and can not work together, and it's totally insignificant because, again, how one comes to have faith is irrelevant to eternal salvation -it is only that one has faith which matters.

I doubt that you seriously think that irrational faith has any way of giving people truth, but maybe I am wrong.
YYW
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1/28/2013 4:58:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 4:03:55 PM, Dan4reason wrote:
At 1/28/2013 3:19:52 AM, YYW wrote:
This problem is especially invoked when self proclaimed rationalists "demand" that God's existence be established in that way, which is itself an absurd demand. What's worse is when Christians (or religious individuals of any order) try to satisfy that demand.

Rationalists ask for some rational reason to think that God exists. How is this an unreasonable demand? All I need is some reason that shows that God exists.

Rational reason that God exists ==> proof of god's existence.
~(Proof of God's existence) ==> ~(rational reason that God exists)

In order to understand how this works, you need to consider how one proves things. We observe, conduct experiments, make observations of results and draw conclusions. This is how empirically proving something works. That said, this method of proof is limited to the physical world. God, if he exists, is not of this world, so it follows that the means of proof for things of the physical world are insufficient to that end. What you want (not need) is a reason that would enable you to believe in God. But if you have that reason, that "proof", then you are not having faith, because faith is belief in the absence of reasons to support your belief. Is it an unreasonable demand? Depends if you understand how faith works or not. If you accept faith for what it is (that is belief in the absence of reason) then you need not seek "reasons." You can rely in feelings, which is all there is.

To believe in God is first and foremost to accept as the truth that which cannot be proven by empirical, testable, repeatable means. It is to accept in belief that which is beyond proof, that which cannot be deduced, that which cannot be proven. That is, by definition, irrational. The problem, though, is the belief that somehow the irrationality of faith in anything not of this world somehow delegitimizes faith itself.

When atheists demand proof of God's existence, they are asking to prove that which cannot be proven by the mechanisms of establishing validity at the disposal of man. We cannot conduct tests or experiments to determine if God is real, and yet to do so would be the only "rational" way of establishing God's existence. This is where the act of faith comes in.

Let me correct you. Atheists do not ask for proof of God. They are asking for something that shows that God exists. It can be something other than a formal proof or scientific evidence.

Let me explain how evidence works. Evidence of X is reason (or a reason, if you want to mince words) to believe that X is true. You need something within your realm of experience that can give you sufficient cause to believe in God as a fact, rather than as a belief grounded on faith alone. That's not how faith works, as I have explained earlier. Faith is not acceptance of things with reasons, it's acceptance of things in the absence of reason(s).

I can list off a whole lot of metaphysical nonsense (St. Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, etc.) which chart arguments for the existence of God, but they do and can not "prove" that God exists because they rest on the assumption that, in fact, God does exist. It's convoluted tautology and no more. My point is that these arguments are at once neither able to do what they claim to do nor could they ever, because of (1) what faith is and (2) how it works.

I do agree that there is no good way of showing that God exists. This does not make it all right to believe in God without evidence. It makes the existence of God a forever unanswerable question.

That's precisely my point, which is why both Atheists and Christians get irritated when I make this argument because while it isolates faith and reason, Christians who were taught that their faith is rational (who don't understand what faith is or how it works) viscerally react against it and make stupid arguments like "but I have felt the power of God." To that I say: ok, great. Can you prove it? And we're back to where we started. Faith is irrational, and necessarily so, but that does not mean it is not worth having.

Faith itself has meaning and value only because it is belief in that which cannot be seen, experienced, tested, falsified -for to believe in that which can be empirically proven requires no faith. It is verifiable fact. It is precisely there that faith and reason part ways, and necessarily so.

So faith parts ways with reason. So how can you be confident that what you have faith in is the truth?

I have no assurance other than faith, but that is enough, if you accept faith for what it is. It is rather precisely when those who have faith begin to doubt the sufficiency of their faith that they start to try to "prove" the existence of God. To do so is to deny the function of faith at its conceptual expense.

The problem is that people do not like uncertainty; they need to be sure, and because they cannot rely on faith alone, they seek to supplement their belief in that which cannot be known with fantasies of reason. It makes them feel better, which is lovely and good, but ultimately meaningless.

We can reason on the basis of faith, form arguments about the meaning of scripture, etc. This is referred to as theology. This is the "reasoned" aspect of faith, but it is reason grounded on the irrational acceptance of the existence of God. Faith wanting of reason means precisely that; we seek to understand, but must begin from a position of trust in the unverifiable.

Trust is earned not given. I will not trust something unless it has earned my trust or will in the future earn my trust.

You're talking about trust as it relates to interpersonal relations, and I would note that the porposition that "trust is earned not given" is at once a subjective claim made on the basis of how you understand relationships. Trust doesn't and can not work that way when we're talking about trust in God, that is trust in something that cannot be proven. I say that to say this, you have the choice to determine what constitutes acceptable grounds for investing your trust. You choose to trust only in that which you "feel" (and I chose that word purposefully) is meritorious of it. So too can you choose to adjust your standards.

I'll respond to the rest of your post in a subsequent post. I'm out of character space.
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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1/28/2013 5:01:29 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 4:03:55 PM, Dan4reason wrote:
At 1/28/2013 3:19:52 AM, YYW wrote:
This is the kind of thing that irritates most Christians because they cannot bring themselves to accept, even though this is what they have done, that their faith is irrational. They create reasons that they think prove the validity of God's existence because they cannot reconcile the fact that to believe in God is to deny the absolute validity of human reason. But that's what they're taught, so that's what they hold dear, that's what they will live and die by, and that's all fine and well because in the end it is inconsequential. That one has faith is what is significant, not that one understands how they came to have it.

But the argument from morality is, like all others that attempt to prove god's existence, pointless. It's just as bad as the KCA, because like the KCA it does and can not do what it purports to do -that is it cannot prove the existence of God. To believe in God is to accept as true what cannot be proven, which is at once irrational and the very definition of faith.

I have tried to explain the difference between positive and normative claims, but I think most people have no idea what the conceptual disparities indicate. Those are adjectives to describe mutually exclusive concepts; just like faith and reason. For anyone who is interested, I'd be happy to go further, but I doubt anyone is.

I would suggest, though, that this is the only way that one can be both intellectually honest and believe in God at the same time. It's the answer to Chris Hitchen's demand of proof for God's existence. It's the response to the KCA and this -rather preposterous- argument from morality. It's the logical isolation of concepts that do and can not work together, and it's totally insignificant because, again, how one comes to have faith is irrelevant to eternal salvation -it is only that one has faith which matters.

I doubt that you seriously think that irrational faith has any way of giving people truth, but maybe I am wrong.

So, look at what I posted before. Truth is a specious term. We presume that the truth is verifiable because it is the truth, and the Bible purports to be the truth so it follows then, that we should be able to verify it... right? No.

Truth of the human world is verifiable. Truth of God is not. Truth of God begins with faith, that is acceptance of something as true which cannot be verified. So, we're back to the definition of faith.
Tsar of DDO
popculturepooka
Posts: 7,926
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1/28/2013 6:33:37 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 12:21:40 AM, Dan4reason wrote:
I hoped you liked the dramatic title. Now of course agnostics, Muslims, spiritual people can participate too as well.

Here it is:
If morality is objective and absolute, God must exist.
Morality is objective and absolute.
Therefore, God must exist.

I will not offer my opinion on it right now, but I will do so in my next post. So there are two questions to be resolved in this epic debate. Is morality objective and absolute?

Wouldn't use those exact words. I'd just stick with saying moral realism is true. But, in essence, yes.

Is God the best explanation for a objective and absolute morality?

Yeah.
At 10/3/2016 11:49:13 PM, thett3 wrote:
BLACK LIVES MATTER!
lit.wakefield
Posts: 17
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1/28/2013 6:59:04 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Agreed. If there are are "objective and absolute morals" then logically there must be a n "absolute" source. This could be a god. This could only be a god, if god was defined to mean "the only possible source of an absolute morality," but I would argue that god would probably not be the best thing to call this "source." I think it's irrelevant anyway. It's just my opinion, but absolute morality seems utterly ridiculous to me.
"There are only two things in the world: nothing and semantics."
- Werner Erhard
matt.mcguire88
Posts: 1,137
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1/28/2013 10:28:00 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Hello, I wanted to ask all of you who are referring to "god", if you are referring to the "Biblical God" or just god in general? In other words are you referring to the "christian God" as in God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, or just a concept of god if you don't mind? I did see that the title was atheism vs christianity lol, but I was curious about the specifics. Thanks
wiploc
Posts: 1,485
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1/28/2013 10:46:34 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 1/28/2013 10:28:00 PM, matt.mcguire88 wrote:
Hello, I wanted to ask all of you who are referring to "god", if you are referring to the "Biblical God" or just god in general? In other words are you referring to the "christian God" as in God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, or just a concept of god if you don't mind? I did see that the title was atheism vs christianity lol, but I was curious about the specifics. Thanks

Christians keep claiming that morality can exist with god, but can't exist without god. They won't explain the claim, but they keep making it. So if you know of any god for whom that claim is defensible, we'd like you to tell us how it works.