If the solar system was brought about by an accidental collision, then the appearance of organic life on this planet was also an accident, and the whole evolution of Man was an accident too. If so, then all our present thoughts are mere accidents—the accidental by-product of the movement of atoms. And this holds for the thoughts of the materialists and astronomers as well as for anyone else’s. But if their thoughts—i.e. of materialism and astronomy—are merely accidental by-products, why should we believe them to be true? I see no reason for believing that one accident should be able to give me a correct account of all the other accidents. It’s like expecting that the accidental shape taken by the splash when you upset a milk jug should give you a correct account of how the jug was made and why it was upset.
I suspect that most of the individuals who have religious faith are content with blind faith. They feel no obligation to understand what they believe. They may even wish not to have their beliefs disturbed by thought. But if God in whom they believe created them with intellectual and rational powers, that imposes upon them the duty to try to understand the creed of their religion. Not to do so is to verge on superstition.
In the world it is called Tolerance, but in hell it is called Despair…the sin that believes in nothing, cares for nothing, seeks to know nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, lives for nothing, and remains alive because there is nothing for which it will die.
For if naturalism was true, the probability that our cognitive faculties would be reliable is pretty low. For those faculties have been shaped by a process of natural selection which does not select for truth but merely for survival. There are many ways in which an organism could survive without its beliefs’ being true. Hence, if naturalism were true, we could not have any confidence that our beliefs are true, including the belief in naturalism itself! Thus, naturalism seems to have a built-in defeater that renders it incapable of being rationally affirmed.
- Therapist: "I thought you didn't believe in God."
- George Costanza: "I do for the bad things."
- Chick-fil-A: "The Chick-fil-A culture and service tradition in our restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect — regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender. Going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena."
- Media and Mayor of Boston: HOW DARE YOU DISCRIMINATE AGAINST HOMOSEXUALS!
- Me: ...
- Me: wut
To Study Atheism Is To Study Nothing?
"If atheism is ‘not a belief,’ if it has no positive affirmations, as so many Internet atheists keep saying, why do I get so many hits when I google ‘study atheism’? If all these atheists were right, then that would be synonymous with ‘study nothing.’
My favorite hit on that search is the toddler t-shirt that says, ‘I’d rather be studying atheism.’ I get it, in fact I’ve felt that way often enough: it means, ‘I’d rather not be studying anything at all.’”
— Tom Gilson
Dawkins: Rape as wrong as having six fingers
- Justin Brierley: “But if we had evolved into a society in which rape was considered fine, would that mean that rape is fine?”
- Richard Dawkins: “I don’t want to answer that question…it’s enough for me to say that we live in a society where it’s not considered fine. We live in a society where selfishness, where failure to pay your debts, failure to reciprocate favors is regarded askance. Ah, that is the society in which we live. I’m very glad…that’s a value judgment, I’m very glad that I live in such a society.”
- Brierley: “It is …. But when you make a value judgment don’t you immediately step yourself outside of this evolutionary process and say … the reason this is good is because it’s good, and you don’t have any way to stand on that statement.”
- Dawkins: “But my value judgment itself could come from my evolutionary past.”
- Brierley: “So, therefore it’s just as random as any product of evolution.”
- Dawkins: “Well, you could say that…uh, but it doesn’t in any case…nothing about it makes it more probable that there is anything supernatural.”
- Brierley: “OK, but ultimately, your belief that rape is wrong is as arbitrary as the fact that we’ve evolved five fingers rather than six.”
- Dawkins: “You could say that, yes.”
What Would God Look Like If He Came To Earth?
Very thought-provoking read, so I thought I would share!
What would God look like if he came to Earth? He would look like Jesus.
Admittedly hindsight is better than foresight, and I would not have been able to make that up if there were no record of Jesus’ life. Here’s why I bring it up, though. I’ve been asking myself,Why Jesus? Why would God show up here as that one man in that one place in that one time?The answer, it seems to me, is that nothing else makes sense.
If I had tried to invent the idea of God coming to earth, I wouldn’t have imagined him as a Jew. Yes, the Jews had a history of knowing God as loving, merciful, forgiving, powerful, holy, righteous, and jealous for the good. They had a tradition telling them to expect a great leader and prophet, a messiah, to come from God. They never thought that this person would actually beGod. So this is hardly an exercise in re-inventing Jesus, on the assumption that the original Jesus was a human invention, too. He couldn’t have been invented as a Jew. Besides, we know from history that he really lived.
I try to think of other ways God could have manifested himself as a visitor among us. He could have come far more impressively, if that had been his purpose, by showing up out of nowhere as a full adult. He could have appeared in multiple locations all at the same time. He could have been fifteen feet tall. He could have had Superman powers like invulnerability or the ability to fly. He could have come with mind-control powers so that no one would have a choice about believing in him.
Yet he came as an infant, and he grew up as one of us. He impressed people, there’s no doubt about that; but not in the fearsome sense of a giant, but rather through his wisdom, his teaching, his love for the unloved, his opposition to the proud, his insistence upon truth as truth. He had the power of God, yet he used it for others. If he was tired, still he walked. His gifts of power were demonstrations of the same thing he was teaching: the Kingdom of God. His miracles were foretastes of the day when Jesus Christ reigns over all.
That Kingdom will be for those who “love his appearing,” as 2 Tim. 4:8 says. Love is a choice, not a compulsion, and not everyone is impressed by wisdom or love, even (as the record shows) when it’s expressed in miraculous power. “If all of a sudden I could feel and hear him,” wrote one person, “that would force me to choose between believing in God or believing I was insane. Kind of a toss up, depending on which way my ego is going at the time it were to occur.” Some people’s egos got in the way of believing in Christ even when they could feel and hear him.
A holy God would show up with a call for right (righteous) living. A loving God would bring a way of rescue from our weakness and failure. Jesus did both. His death on the cross is the ultimate demonstration that sin is wrong, horrible, and deadly. His death and resurrection are proof that he has overcome sin’s deathly hold on us.
What do you think? Was Jesus the way you would expect a good God to manifest himself among us?
— Tom Gilson
In this materialistic age, dualists [those who believe in the existence of a soul apart from the brain] are often accused of smuggling outmoded religious beliefs back into science, of introducing superfluous spiritual forces into biology, and of venerating an invisible ‘ghost in the machine.’ However, our utter ignorance concerning the real origins of human consciousness marks such criticism more a matter of taste than of logical thinking. At this stage of mind science, dualism is not irrational, merely somewhat unfashionable.