[“Even if I did believe in god, I could not sponsor the Christian faith (or any other religion) because of their historical crimes. Sweeping these crimes to one side – and saying that these people are bad Christians or misguided doesn’t undo these wrongs.”
Nobody is trying to diminish the old misdeed; that kind of statement is taking this conversation deliberately in the wrong direction. Nobody either said that Christians never do anything bad but to claim that atheism is perfect is not to understand our modern history. Think Joseph Stalin, Adolph Hitler, Moa Tse Tung, of China and Nicolae Ceauşescu of Romania. These are all people that wanted God out of the picture.
[“Supporting the ‘word’ that justified these crimes would make me no better than the people that performed these crimes, as they used the so called ‘word of god’ to justify their actions.”]
If you are talking about Biblical events, please note the following:
- There were no liberal minded people then, i.e. similar to what you find today. It was very simple: kill or be killed so no modern philosophy on that one is justifiable.
- If you know even a little bit of the local history of the country that Israel took over, you would know that local people used to sacrifice their own children, burn them alive. They would then play loud music to drown the noise of crying babies. They were also known for tying the legs of young mothers so that they would die during childbirth.
- There is also new information today as a result of archaeology and anthropology. Examination of bones of the local inhabitants has shown that many were infectious and had diseases like leprosy. I’m not making excuses here but you should remember that 3,000 plus years ago, the world was a different place.
[“The 19th, 20th and 21st charitable face of Christianity (the Victorian morals) is a kin to a thug beating up someone, and then calling an ambulance and giving them medical care afterwards. The damage by religion on the human race has been done – and any number of Christian aid charities, apology’s to grate men like Galileo Galilei – will undo these wrongs.”]
You are becoming too passionate in your arguments, so much so that one thing that you supposedly elevate above all else is not present. This is not reason or logic talking but an emotional outburst. Without the Church, there would be no Galileo. As I’m sure you are aware from history, Britain would not be what it is today without the influence of the Church.
[“Hitler used God to appeal to the masses – and in doing so galvanised and implemented the final solution – to terminate all Jews – such is the horror of religion when used in all it’s crowning glory. And today, we are still picking up the pieces, the conflict between the Jews and Muslims is exaggerated by the aftermath of the paranoia that all Jews have regarding their race and other race’s desire to terminate them.”]
We must be careful not to twist truth on its head. This is not historically correct. First of all, if you know anything about Hitler you would know that he sponsored Black Magic and things like paganism and not Christianity. Second of all, there are links between Hitler and the Vatican but I will not even attempt to justify that. I am not Catholic but I happen to think that they can provide you with enough of their reasoning. You also sound a bit anti Jewish in your comments so I won’t go there.
[“The way forward is to drop this sociological tool (i.e. religion) – and to use something that is better – that is foundered on the belief of no absolutes, and the ability to be proven wrong. Einstein’s theories are tested to this day, and one day many of them may be proved wrong, or subsumed into wider reaching understandings – this is a rational perspective. You will not find people that will galvanise nations to go to war or terminate others based on Einstine’s philosophy or theories – and the say Einstine is proven wrong will be celebrated – as this will be the day, when humanity has stood on the shoulders of a scientific giant and proved him wrong in order to better the human race’s knowledge and understanding of the universe.”]
You should first check what you write down before making claims that have no solid foundation. First of all, since when are Christians anti science? Second of all, what makes you think that Christians would resist the truth if science was somehow to prove Christianity wrong? These claims and many like them are totally arrogant where one side pretends to know the truth and then attempts to lecture the other. This is not a dialogue, it’s lecturing. I often get accused of preaching but just re-read your comments and tell me what they sound like to you. Also, having no absolutes does not work. First of all, you need constants if you are going to learn anything about any other thing. We have gravity, speed of light etc. These are absolutes that we understand and can control, i.e. we can slow down the speed of light and fly an airplane but this uses other constants to overcome the constant of gravity.
[“Inventing God is a cheat – it gives people the excuse not to think or explorer ‘we don’t understand it – therefore God created it’ – but actually including God into the equation makes things harder to explain. If God created everything – who or what created God? and if God was not created and has always been – where exactly was he when before he created everything.”]
This makes me smile every time I hear comments like that. These are presuppositions that really do need to have some kind of supporting evidence if they are to be treated seriously. Dr Dawkins knows that and you should stop listening to him. Test first then, and only then, adopt or reject.
Just think about this: all your intelligent Atheist friends will tell you that the Big Bang is what is accepted by general science and is an accepted theory, yet it claims that all came out of nothing. We are talking here that sub atomic particles created all matter in the universe. First of all, how about acknowledging that this is amazing. Second of all, it sounds like a Bible talk to me. Nobody creates God that is why he is called God. There has to be end to this digression, otherwise it will be a never-ending constant who created who, which I’m guessing your logic tells you is not possible. Don’t ask for the explanation of the explanation otherwise scrap all the knowable science we have today.
[“These paradoxes are prevalent in science also, but science attempts to explorer these topics – religion just says, it is just so – live with it. One day science may prove that there is a god – but until that time, we should all be sceptical and we should all search for the truth unhindered without indocrination and fear or belief in the words that were written by old fashioned thinking and ideology.”]
These are significant contradictions. First you allow for the possibility of God then you deny any opportunity for the existing material (Bible) to be considered? Is this not a kind of anti knowledge and even anti science if the science is going to prove God?
[“But the philospophical debate surrounding God is just a distraction – the main reason for God to exist in a sociological context is to control people. Since man learnt to speak, he has used beliefs to support his political and moral view. God has taken us to war countless times, it has been used as an excuse to smother great discoveries like evolution, genetics and cell biology.”]
Let me answer this in two parts. First of all don’t knock philosophy: you use it in everything you do. Your philosophical world view will guide you to either being an atheist or a Christian. Secondly, God was only involved with the nation of Israel, so don’t blame him for all the other wars. The fact is people often look for excuses and you rightly point out that countries’ leaders used religion but here is where you make a logical fallacy: this was their own doing and nothing to do with God. It’s like me killing a man and then blaming it on you, as you believe in self defence. I call that morally inaccurate.
[“Many of the things that church has used to justify its actions are immoral – for example the use of condoms to prevent AIDS – the fact that the Catholic church is against this sickens me… the mature rational view is to understand that humans have sex, sometimes for pleasure – and no matter what you or I think, it will always be so. But to make people who do not understand the risks in third world countries, believe that they will go to hell for using a condom is awful – the real hell is living with AIDS in a third world country without medical care – that is a living hell.”]
I refuse to be blamed for the actions of the Catholic Church. On this we agree but also note that if there was no moral promiscuity we would not have a problem with AIDS to the extent we have it today.
[“And what do the Christians say – well abstain, don’t have sex – because to do so out side of wedlock is a sin anyway – this is rubbish. Men and women are animals, they were animals before religion came and they are animals after religion came. Since they are animals, they have animal needs, desires and instincts – asking someone to abstain from sex is like saying – never eat until satisfied. Perhaps, this explains why priests that claim that they are celibate seem to be the ones that prosecuted for raping little boys… as they may not regard that as sex outside of marriage so this is OK.”]
Notice your assumptions are different from my assumptions so it is pointless to argue here as we are not going to agree.
- I don’t consider myself to be an animal
- I’m not anti sex. I’m against pressurising others by saying it’s OK just do it, where small children are doing it, because “all my friends said it was OK”.
- Don’t blame me for the sins of other priests that belong to a different church. I consider it immoral that the Catholic Church forbids its priests to marry.
[“Or perhaps, it is OK for a Christian to perform a immoral act so long as it is confessed – after all Jesus forgives all of our sins – except the one to deny the holly ghost’s existence – do you not think it strange, that this is the one sin that is easiest one to perform? It is easier than murder, rape, theft, adultery – so no wonder Christians are terrified of thinking and are blinded by their faith… poor souls, how you suffer the injustices of man on man.”]
First of all, I see your misunderstanding about what sin against the Holy Spirit is, just as Dr Dawkins does. You could only do that if you happen to live at the same time as Christ where he is talking to you, and during which time the Holy Spirit is working on you to persuade you that he is the messiah. Therefore, it is impossible for you to do that. The closest that you and I can come to that is to continuously refuse to accept Jesus as our Saviour, in which case, you would refuse his saving sacrifice which will have the same affect. So don’t bother yourself unnecessarily with that. It is yet another red herring.
It is not OK for Christians to sin, but Christians do understand that we all sin regardless of what we believe. The difference is that Christianity offers a way out of this never-ending cycle of sin and guilt. First, we have freedom from our sinful nature then gradually we become more like Christ. This is an ongoing process that only ends when our lives on this earth end.
And there lays the difference: Atheists say it’s OK to sin, you can’t do anything about it. The other is saying I sin but I know that God can do something about it. Surrendering to God is not an easy thing to do, just look at all the people who complain about God. Do you think they all base their decision on an intimate knowledge of science or a complete philosophical understanding, which they have somehow attained? I don’t think so. This fear that comes from the inside is related to not wanting the dirt on the inside to be seen on the outside.
Defend the word