Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – again, why speak out?

in case anyone might think that any of these haven't already been addressed...

in case anyone might think that any of these haven’t already been addressed…

First, I’d like to welcome my new blog followers. We have some new Christians of some type or other (some quite sure that they are the only TrueChristians), so I invite you to ask questions of me, a real live atheist.  :)   I’ve addressed a lot of common theist claims on this forum so you can use the search function if you’d like to see if I’ve commented on something you find important.   I have no problem with you using my blog for fodder, but if you do think you can rebut my points, please do have the courage to let me know.

The following is a bit of a rewrite of a couple comments I posted on another person’s blog. (a similar post to this is here (back in March 2013), some points the same, some different, some expanded on, some not).

A question I’ve seen many theists and agnostics ask atheists is: don’t you think that religion has at least some merits?  Even if no religion is true, that they present only human stories and myths, don’t you think that they can serve any positive purpose?  Now, most theists will try to broadly frame this question, so their particular religion’s failures can’t be mentioned.  So, I’ll try to answer the question considering all religions that I know about, and even the ever-so vague versions of god and religion that modern theists have invented to avoid the problems of their religions, rather like how Oprah Winfrey has just recently declared that all religions are wrong, and how atheists simply can’t be atheists (a couple of good posts on that particular bit of silliness here and here.)

I think there is some truth that humans are inclined to believe in nonsense.  Our brains love to see agency behind action e.g. for something to happen, something else must make it happen, and to take it one step further, must *intend* on making it happen.  That likely helped us to know to watch out for shaking bushes that had tigers in them. So, we have the ideas of gods, demons, genius loci, angels, devas, efreet, etc, invented.  These beings are powerful, powerful enough to cause and control things like hurricanes, but very identifiable as humans writ large.  They are just as proud, petty and stupid as humans can be, often even more so.

However, this tendency to see agency is just that, a tendency, and one easily ignored when facts are involved (willful ignorance, as always, will counteract this).  Yes, millions of people believe in supernatural beings, but they believe in millions of different ones that have millions of varied and contradictory attributes (and they disbelieve in millions too).  There is nothing that shows that any of them are even remotely correct in their baseless assumptions. And, of course, there is the simple existence of atheists and there are plenty of  happy decent people who were raised without believing in anything fanciful and who never came up with their own gods.  It seems that, rather than humans being all inclined to believe in the supernatural, humans are inclined to believe in what they are told by those who they trust.  Then it comes down to what evidence can support either concept.  There are a lot of theists, but that does not mean that anything that they believe is true.  It just shows that they learn what they are taught and have reasons to keep believing in such things.

Another excuse for religion is the claim that it is more “spiritual” than science, that humans need something else than science to interact. Well, that is indeed true, in that science is a way to describe the world by using the scientific method based on objective information.  But no one needs religion to love one another, socialize, empathize, etc.  Being human allows us to do that.  Atheists are not logic machines like caricature of Mr. Spock (who wasn’t emotionless at all, says the trekkie J )  nor do most of us want to be.  Emotions are human and by and large they aren’t “irrational”.  Unless suffering from one of a number of mental illnesses, we do feel emotions for very real reasons.  They are not bad, just occasionally inconvenient.  :)

The usual denouement claim is that belief is harmless, so why does this mean ol’ atheist go after it with hammer and tongs?  Belief can be harmless, especially if it’s just within one’s own thoughts.  However, belief is usually followed by action.  In my experience, no one has a belief that does not manifest in action and in reality.  There can be positive and negative actions.  One can argue that religion brings people together. One can also argue that religion tears people apart (take a look at my “origin story”).  One can also show that it directly causes people to do awful things, including to kill children.  It seems that the negative effects always outweigh any supposed benefit that religion can bring.

Religion is claimed to satisfy a lot of human needs and desires, appealing to emotions for example, so why oppose it?   Humans do want anything that makes us happy, and that might mean fulfilled, contented, loved, etc.  But our intellects can override those base urges and our humanity takes care of the rest, since humans can be demonstrated not to *need* religion.  In my observations, religion is thought to fulfill a lot of wants, the want to believe that we have some knowledge of how the universe works, that something big and powerful cares for us and that this being will also do our bidding.   Humans love to believe that they know everything and that other humans hold them in esteem.  But those beliefs are wrong and can be harmful, for instance doing something stupid, like denying medical care to your children because you think your imaginary friend will heal the child.  If people are taught that religion and its promises and claims are false, which they are, people will cease to place value in religion when they see it does not fulfill any wants at all.  Science doesn’t promise what it doesn’t give, like religion consistently does.

It is my opinion that religion may have served some purpose, but, like tribalism, does no longer.  We do not need a small group of people who will keep us from being eaten by tigers because they believe that their magical spells/prayers will keep the tiger away. We also do not need to think that the “other” is always a threat, something that tribalism and religion are based on.

post script *10/18/13 4:06 EST) – many theists want to claim that they have no religion, only a “relationship”.   They run away from the term religion since it has such bad odor thanks to the actions of theists, and try to redefine a word for their convenience.  They do have a religion and it is defined as “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices” Merriam-Webster.   This is the religion I speak against.

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107 responses to “Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – again, why speak out?

  1. So an atheist who is taught negative values is just as likely as a theist who is taught negative values to do harm in the world? And an atheist or theist who is taught positive values will most likely do good in the world?

    I hope you agree. So are you claiming that all Religions are wrong or that humanity is prone to being taught negative or positive values? Is your claim that belief in God/s can only result in a negative impact in the world?

    Are you condemning one worldview (belief in god) and promoting your worldview (belief that no gods exist)? How exactly is that different from what anyone else does? How can anyone know that your claims are true? How do you know that what you claim is the correct answer?

    Does the Bible teach “religion” or does humanity use the Bible to make their own “Religions?”

    I’ll give my penny on that last question. I do not believe the Bible to teach religion but a way of life with a creator God who loves and desires humanity to choose him as opposed to doing it their own way. But humanity in continual disobedience of God’s will falls victim to religious mind sets and follows religion rather than following God…so I feel when an atheist uses the “evils” of religion as a means of not believing in God, they’ve missed the point. Their issue is with a human construct “religion” and not God’s construct: Loving God and Loving others. We all are learning how to get along and live in harmony and hopefully teaching our kids good values and how to make the world a better place to live…the direction I feel is exactly what Christ teaches in the Gospels. Yeah, there are a lot of people (myself included) that gets it wrong at times but that doesn’t mean it makes everything about believing in God wrong.

    • Hello KD. Thanks for commenting on my blog.
      Yes, an atheist who is taught negative values (define those please) is just as likely as a theist who is taught the same values to do harm in the world. And yes, an atheist or theist who is taught positive values (again define those) will be likely to follow those values and do good in the world. If you don’t think this is true, then give me examples. As it stands, I find that values only found in religion, that of obedience to some magical being, to follow its supposed laws, etc to be values that are very destructive. For all of theists’ claims of having some magical knowledge and gods that influence mankind, there is no difference between atheist and theist, except for believing in fairy tales.

      Yes, I am claiming that all religions are wrong. If you can show me one that you can show right, please do. I am expecting evidence of the existence of any gods claimed to be real, that any laws will be cause punishment/reward by said gods, evidence of any special events claimed by the religion to be real, etc.

      I have not said that religions cannot do some good, I have said that religions do far far more harm than good. We do have the idea of “do unto others”. Judaism and Christianity have that but other cultures had the idea long before that. So, no one can point to their god and say it was only their idea. We can have the same good positive ideas and not have the ludicrous ideas of magical invisible friends that help one person but not another depending on how it’s worshipped. We do not need religion at all.

      I have no problem at all condemning nonsense, KD. There is no evidence that any religion is true. I can show plenty of evidence that no gods as humans claim exists. None of your claims come true. None of your events that you claim happened have any evidence that they happened. All that is possible, but not probable is some entity that none of you have gotten right yet. You are a Christian, one more that is sure that your version is the only right version. And there are millions of theists who you are sure are wrong. But you and they cannot show that you have any more “truth” than anyone else. I know that my position is the one supported by evidence. Yours is not, no more than all of the theists who you are sure are wrong. As soon as you can heal someone like your savior, your religion has promised, then you will have evidence to support your claims. If you can show that your version of Christianity is the only right one, perhaps during a competition with altars like Elijah supposedly did, then I will consider your claims as possibly true. As it stands, you and every other theist have nothing.

      Unsurprisingly, you want to claim that you aren’t “religious”. I see a lot of Christians insisting that they have some “relationship” not a religion but you do have a religion. The word’s definition wont’t magically change just because you have found that other theists have made the term religion rather silly. The Christian bible does teach religion: “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices”. That’s exactly what it does. Every TrueChristian wants to pretend that they and they alone have the only “right” way to understand the bible. And you all disagree. Your religion is the same as every other religion, a set of claims that have nothing to support them.

      Teaching a way of life is the same as teaching a religion: “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices.” It’s how to live your life. You must believe in a certain thing, you must do certain things, etc. There is nothing in the bible that shows that your god exists or that it loves anything. I know what love is and it is not demanding that someone attempt to kill his child to satisfy me. That is nothing but a power freak, controlling and abusive. I do not design a game that requires a painful murder to satisfy me. I do not continually change the rules of the game when the players fail and me, as a supposedly omnipotent being, doesn’t know that this going to happen. Your god, at least according to *your* version, is a god that desires humanity to choose it, but that’s not the story the bible tells at all. It tells of a violent petty god, no better than Ares or Zeus, that offers no choice at all. Love is not saying “you will be tortured for eternity if you don’t “love” me”. Those are the words of a abusive parent or lover. You are either damned to eternal torture for hurting this god’s feelings, or you obey it. Again, none of you TrueChristians can agree on how one obeys it. We have Fred Phelps who is sure that accepting homosexuals harm the country, and we have the Church of God who has no problem with gay people. I, as an atheist, have no idea which of you is “right” and none of you can show me that you are either. Now, why should I believe your version and not someone elses? You are all playing Pascal’s Wager and all certain that you made the right bet.

      Humanity is not in “continual disobedience” of your invisible friend. You, like every other TrueChristian, decides that God agrees with you and only you. Your hatreds and desires are God’s, because you can’t imagine anyone disagreeing with you so you’ve become your god. Sometimes God hates homosexuals and sometimes he doesn’t. Sometimes he wants women to be second class citizens and sometimes he doesn’t. We aren’t all learning how to get along and live in harmony, not when your religion or your “way of life” teaches that some people are less than human and deserve to be tortured for eternity. You are not making the world a better place to live. You want to make the world in your image based on the claim that some magical entity agrees with you.

      Religion aka “way of life” gets it wrong *every* time since it is not telling the truth.

      • we do, but they are not ” a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices ” I do see that you forgot the word “religious” – “of or relating to religion: believing in a god or a group of gods and following the rules of a religion” http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/religious?show=0&t=1382233532

        Atheists have many different personal sets of beliefs, attitudes and practices. KD, are you trying to claim that atheism is a religion as many theists have tried to excuse their actions?

      • Religious attitudes or religion does not necessitate belief in a supernatural being such as a god or gods.

        A person can be religious about how many times they brush their teeth a day, how often they go to the gym, or about their favorite coffee shop. Would you consider Buddhism or Humanism a religion? Those are two institutionalized systems that teach “religious” attitudes, beliefs, and practices that do not worship or believe in a god or gods.

        I took the word religious out purposefully. Religion in the dictionary is not synonymous with god/s or the belief in god/s. Many people who believe in god/s are religious but so are people who do not believe in god/s.

        I can demonstrate this further. You have friends who share your set of attitudes, beliefs, and practices, if you meet with them on a regular basis you could call yourself a Church. You find information online, in books, by TV, music, podcast or elsewhere that continues to shape your views and understanding of the world, like Christians or other non-Christian theists do for their views. So are we truly to believe that atheists are not prone to religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices?

        Or rather are you saying all theistic religions are wrong but your atheistic religion is right? Aren’t we then playing Pascal Wager again?

        I am only certain of one thing, that I can be certain of nothing. I do not believe my views are absolutely correct. Rather I have hope and faith that what I believe is correct. And that belief is that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.

        For me to make a claim that “God agrees with me,” would be blasphemous. I can only agree or disagree with God never the other way around. The freedom I have in Jesus is that once I come to the knowledge that I have disagreed (disobeyed, sinned, done wrong to someone) with God I can repent and receive grace and forgiveness. I am reconciled back into a right relationship with God through Jesus.

        Many people asked Jesus for a sign to prove he was the Messiah. He gave them many signs and wonders but they were too blind to see what was right in front of them. Can a blind person see the tree that is in their way or do they need a guide to aid to help them know where it is at?

      • KD, in this context, discussing religion between a theist and an atheist, religion does necessitate believe in a supernatural being such a god or gods. Even Buddhism requires believe in the supernatural, if not an actual being, to get its bodhisattvas and devas; and miracles that it claims that Buddha did. But we aren’t talking about Buddhism, are we? No, we are talking about your version of Christianity, which fulfills the definition of religion just like I got from the Merriam-Webster dictionary. We can look at the Oxford English Dictionary for a definition too since I am fortunate to have one. Religion: 3. Action or conduct indicating a belief in, reverence for, and desire to please, a divine ruling power; the exercise or practice of rites or observations implying this. 4. A particular system of faith and worship. 5. Recognition on the part of man of some higher unseen power in control of his destiny, and entitled to obedience, reverence, and worship; the general mental and moral attitude resulting from this belief, with reference to its effect upon the individual or the community; personal or general acceptance of this feeling as a standard of spiritual and practical life.”

        One can indeed be “religious” about other things, like exercise, a sports team, etc. but that is not what we are discussing. So your attempts to claim that brushing one’s teeth “religiously” are just silly. Humanism isn’t a religion, because no one must practice it a certain way. It does not “teach “religious” attitudes, beliefs, and practices.” However, if you think you can support your nonsense, show me these “institutionalized” attitudes, beliefs and practices” that humanism teaches. I’m waiting.

        It’s great to see how desperate Christians get when they have to face that their religion is no better or more real or more important than any other religion. Your religion, your way of life, your “relationship” is just like the millions of theists who you are sure are wrong.

        We are discussing your belief system, your “way of life” directed by your supposed “holy” book, that tells you the “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious, believing in a god or a group of gods and following the rules of a religion< attitudes, beliefs, and practices “. I’ll ask you directly: do you follow a set of beliefs, attitudes and practices that are claimed to come from a supernatural being? If you do, again, you are following a religion and are religious. It is only in KDWorld where religion magically doesn’t mean religion.

        I know you took out the word “religious” out purposefully because you want to play pretend that atheism is somehow “just like” your religious nonsense. But now that I’ve demonstrated that atheists do not follow some set of beliefs, practices, and attitudes, your argument fails and I see that you have not followed up on what you were driving at with your question. I’ll ask again: what was your purpose to ask such a question that assumes that atheists do something that they do not and that you would have already known if you had any familiarity with atheists? Atheists may be interested in something, may do some things consistently and with great focus, and those things are all sorts of different things. So, again, you have failed in attempting to claim that all atheists are religious about the same thing, as if this excuses your own religious nonsense.

        No, I do not have friends who share all, e.g. “your set”, of my attitudes. I have friends that share some of them. No, one could not call any group a church if they happen to share some interests. If so, why we’d all have non-profits so we could also hide our money from the government. Again, you try to redefine words. A church is defined a certain way, and not the way that TrueChristians want to pretend that they aren’t any different than anyone else: “a building for public and especially Christian worship 2: the clergy or officialdom of a religious body 3often capitalized : a body or organization of religious believers: as a : the whole body of Christians b : DENOMINATION c : CONGREGATION 4: a public divine worship 5: the clerical profession ”.

        This continued attempt to claim that atheists have a “religion” and are “religious” is just grand. I find it to be a symptom of TrueChristians trying to deny that there are indeed atheists at all, because our mere existence shows that your imaginary friends are not real. You have to play pretend that atheists “really are” just like you, so you must be “right”. Religion and religious gained the definitions to be focused on a topic, to do something consistently and repeatedly. Other words can and are used to describe that, but the original definitions of both are entirely based on the belief in the supernatural, that something must be done to gain the benefits/approval of something magical, something with no evidence to support it.

        You claim that atheism is a religion. So, let’s go with the very broad definition of it, as you seem to need to do. Tell me what attitudes, beliefs, and practices consist of this supposed “religion”? I’ll start you off. Atheists do not believe in god/gods. Now you can fill out the rest, all of those “other” beliefs, attitudes, and practices that you claim all atheists have to qualify for even the most broad definition of “religion”. I’m waiting. Surely you have lists of them that “all” atheists follow.

        I am not saying that anything is an “atheistic religion” or that it is somehow “right”. The claim that atheism is a religion is nonsense. That term is a pitiful creation by a TrueChristian and atheists find the idea hiliarious. Since it is nothing more than wishful thinking from a person who is intentionally ignorant about atheists and atheism, it has nothing “right” about it. Atheism is the lack of belief in god/gods. That’s it. It’s wonderful that you think you can somehow invoke Pascal’s Wager. So, what would the Pascal’s Wager be for an atheist? It seems that you are as unfamiliar with the argument of the wager as you are of Buddhism and atheism. Let’s see: The evidence demonstrates that no gods exist, e.g. all theists are sure that their religion is the only right one and none of them have any evidence that they are even remotely correct. There is no need to wager, since there is no god. So, one has no chance to gain anything or lose anything, especially some ridiculous threat of eternal torture and a deity that is so stupid that it can be fooled by someone claiming to believe simply for the sake of the wager.

        And of course we go straight for the lie that TrueChristians tell themselves when it’s convenient. Oh, you insist that you can’t be sure of anything. That’s just a riot since you do not live as if you actually did believe this. Actions always bely this nonsense that TrueChristians claim. You accept that the sun will always rise in the east. You accept that modern medicine will help you. You accept that internal combustion engines will work. You do not believe in a Seussian universe where you know absolutely nothing and things could change from minute to minute. You do believe your views are absolutely correct since you are sure that everyone else is wrong and you believe that you have the correct way to know what your god supposedly is and wants. If you did not, then you would change versions of Christianity with no problem. But no, you are sure that anyone who does not believe as you will be punished by this god. You do claim that your god agrees with you, since you are sure that only you know what it wants and so does every other TrueChristian. I can read that on your blog, KD, and so can everyone else when they click on your screen name here. You do not only “hope”, you act on your beliefs as if they were absolutely true.

        Since no TrueChristians agree on what God wants, you do not agree or disagree with God. You’ve made up what God “wants”. You cannot show that you know what it actually wants but you tell everyone else that you know. And now you claim that you can know something, yes? You say that “once I come to the knowledge” which shows that you do think you have this absolute knowledge, but you cannot show that it is any more directly from God than any other TrueChristian who is also absolutely sure that they have this “knowledge” too. You want to pretend that you “know” what it takes to disobey God, but again that requires an assumption that your version and only yours is the “right” one. You are sure that you and only you know how to have a “right relationship with God through Jesus”, and that everyone else is wrong.

        Jesus gave no one signs and wonders to prove he was the Messiah since there is no evidence he existed. But I am glad that you mentioned that the story does say that signs and wonders were given to show that JC was the Messiah. Other TrueChristians say that those miracles were not given as indicators that JC was bona fide and insist that this is why there are no miracles now. Of course, other TrueChristians claim that there are indeed miracles now. It’s a lovely example again of how for a group of people who are sure that they have the truth, you have nothing at all. All of you TrueChristians are claiming to be infallible guides to show people around the “tree that is in their way” but none of you can agree on which way to go or where the tree is. Which of you shall I follow, KD? Your version, that you now try to claim you aren’t sure about? Fred Phelps? The folks at the United Church of God who say that Christians who say that homosexuals are damned are wrong?

        I’m still waiting for one of you to show that your version is the right one *and* show that everyone else is wrong. If we are to believe your bible, this god of yours has no problem in showing that other gods are false, to the point of murdering all of their priests. We have this god having no problem in showing a doubter direct evidence and still accepting him as one of the faithful, but golly this god can’t do that now at all. When I was losing my faith, I asked for evidence like Thomas. Why didn’t this lost sheep get what she needed? Now, the usual excuses are “God’s ways are mysterious.”, “You aren’t sincere enough” (shades of the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown), or “You are damned since golly there is predestination”. What is your answer, KD?

      • I’m skipping over most of your response because I would rather address your personal experience. You asked for evidence, I believe God has given you the evidence and is still trying…it’s just not in the way you’re looking for it. I wrote a little bit about it here: http://thebussstop.wordpress.com/2013/10/17/on-the-road-home-day-1-2/ .

        I find you have a preconceived notion about what I believe and the “type of Christian I am.” Maybe you’re right? Maybe, what I believe is as you say. I guess the only way to find out is to stick around and follow my blog…are you scared that my religion might rub off on you?

        You also presume that I have a preconceived notion about what you believe. You are wrong. I know that you believe no god/s exist. That much I can hold as “true.” But why you believe what you believe, your experiences, your practices, your attitudes, your understanding…those I learn as you share them. I care more for dialogue than debate. I didn’t come here to “win and argument.” Or to prove through debate that you are wrong and need to repent. I came to engage and share my thoughts and views as they are different from yours. If you don’t care for what I believe, that is fine. If you are however interested in seeing if there is any truth to my belief in God, then as I said feel free to follow my blog.

        I’m not infallible, I make mistakes and get things wrong. I’m working on a post that will hopefully be done soon. It will cover some of what I believe about Heaven and Hell and that God accepts everyone but not everyone accepts Him.

        Hope you rethink God even though Religion has left a sour taste in your mouth!

      • Ah, now we have KD claiming that he is ignoring any arguments that show his claims of not having a religion to be false because he wants to make up things about my personal experience. I’m glad that we have such an honest rejection of reality by a Christian who seems to know that he has failed.

        Unsuprisingly, we have KD insisting that I’m not doing something “right”. Your god has given me no evidence. I have heard all of the TrueChristian claims, that the universe is evidence of their god and only their god, that the bible is evidence, etc. And there is nothing to show that their god is the creator of the universe. We have nothing that says that the Christian god, version KD, is the one who did anything. We have competing claims from other religions that are just as good as the TrueChristian claim that God is the only “right” one to worship. We have Muslims claim that Allah created the universe, did not become a man and sent a prophet flying on a pony to Jerusalem. We have Wicca insisting that their Goddess danced the universe into existence. We have Buddhists who claim that the universe had no beginning at all. We have creation story after creation story, all with different gods and different methods, and none of these claims can be shown to be true. Any of these other theists can say just as easily that you, KD, simply aren’t looking hard enough and aren’t accepting their god because you are rebellious. Can you show that you are not? 

        We have KD who says that I’m just not looking for evidence in the “right” way, which seems to be just accepting what KD says blindly because KD has the “truth”. That is your desperation to be agreed with, approval of the herd. And we again have evidence that you, KD, are sure that you know that your way is the only right way, something that you claim not to believe, that you only supposed “hope” you are right. You have tried to lie, KD, and that’s bemusing.

        You claim that you now trust God with everything. Many others have done exactly has you have and it’s funny how their lives and yours are no different from those who do not trust your god or those who trust no gods at all. You claim that you are impressed with the humility of Jesus. And that shows that you have created Jesus in the image you want. A humble Jesus can be created out of the bible, one that weeps at Gesthemane and who asks for the burden to be lifted, and so can be a Jesus who is not humble at all. He is sure that he is God and has no problem with being cruxified since that’s what he wants, no tears at all. All TrueChristians claim to know the ways and will of their god, and you don’t agree. Again, you cannot show that your nonsense is any better than anyone else’s.

        I know what you believe, KD, I can read your blog. Is that not what you believe? Let’s see, what can I pick from there that shows what you believe:
        “For me, simply being aware of learning to trust God in everything opened up my mind to see all the ways God is involved in our daily lives.” You are sure that you can see the effects of your god. You are also sure that you can interpret what God really means when you attribute these effects to your god.
        “Life is about God, life is from God, and life is to God. God is everything. There are two things I know for sure 1) I am not perfect. 2) God is.” We have no evidence of this (indeed we have evidence against it, considering God’s failures in the bible, supposedly “designing” humans etc) but you claim that you know it is true.

        “Each and everyone of us needs prayer and petition on our behalf to be re-energized by the Holy Spirit to carry on our daily tasks.” There is no evidence prayer works, that anything is petitioning anything else and that the Holy Spirit exists, much less does anything.

        “Sometimes I wonder if atheists even know what they themselves believe? But that’s beside the point.” No, it’s not beside the point, it’s one more lie told by you to pretend that atheists don’t understand themselves and don’t know what they believe. Alas for you, we do. Now, telling a lie about someone is false witnessing, and I do recall your god doesn’t like that. Is that one of the commandments you are sure he didn’t really meant? I am entirely amused that you have decided to attack me on your blog: http://thebussstop.wordpress.com/2013/10/21/the-atheist-debates/ but are too afraid to mention just who I am. Now, for someone who is intent on ignoring parts of my post that they don’t like, your claims on your blog posts are just great, falsely claiming that this mysterious atheist is doing what you have done. Oh and you claim that atheists are “irrational”. Please do demonstrate this, KD. Show me where I am irrational.

        “Nobody is 100% right.” That is also untrue. I am 100% right that if you throw yourself into a ladle of molten iron, you will die. If you don’t think I’m right, do so. But you won’t, will you? Many theists want to claim that no one knows anything for certain because they think that makes their nonsense possible, that if we cannot know anything for certain, their god has to be out there under some rock.

        “That I deny my way of living life and follow Jesus’ way of living.” Here you claim to know what JC’s way of living is. Many TrueChristians make the same claim and again, you folks don’t agree.

        Oh and the creationism. There is nothing that supports the biblical version of creation. Not one bit of evidence. The evidence shows that the bible is full of nonsense, that the moon doesn’t create light. You claim that “Scientists today are discovering the Early Earth is remarkably similar as Ancient Hebrews describe it 3500 years ago.” And that is untrue. Your bible does indeed say that the earth was without form, which is rather hard to be since there was indeed form in the dust particles, ices, etc that were around. You see, KD, I am a geologist, and I also am quite familiar with other sciences and I know your claims are false, just more TrueChristian attempts to use their magic decoder ring and say that their god “really meant” the Hadean earth, though nothing matches. Your bible claims that land plants were the first off the pad, and that we know is not true from fossil evidence. We have your bible claiming that man was created before plants and again, the evidence for this? Nothing.

        As I have demonstrated, I am not afraid of your blog at all. I’m not afraid of someone who must make false claims. I do certainly hope such deceitfulness doesn’t rub off on me.

        KD, you have claimed that atheists all follow some “religious” set of beliefs, attitudes and practices. And now we find that you can’t actually say what those are when directly asked. So, it seems that your claims are false again. You claim that you care more for dialogue than debate, and these are the same things. It seems that you want to pretend that dialogue: 2a : a conversation between two or more persons; also : a similar exchange between a person and something else (as a computer)b : an exchange of ideas and opinions c : a discussion between representatives of parties to a conflict that is aimed at resolution is different than a debate: a contention by words or arguments. They are the same thing, KD, when it comes to a theist telling an atheist that she is wrong and that the theist is right. If you thought you could come to my blog and tell me I’m wrong and not have me contest that, well, you were very mistaken at the best, and overassured that your arguments would be considered impossible to address at the worst.

        You came here to declare I was wrong, KD; just like AAM who claimed that I wasn’t accepting other ways to find the “truth” and now evidently cannot present those ways or the supposed “truths” that have been revealed. Here is what you have said: “I do not believe the Bible to teach religion but a way of life with a creator God who loves and desires humanity to choose him as opposed to doing it their own way. But humanity in continual disobedience of God’s will falls victim to religious mind sets and follows religion rather than following God…so I feel when an atheist uses the “evils” of religion as a means of not believing in God, they’ve missed the point.” You want to claim that I’ve “missed the point” which means that you think your point is the only right one. You have tried to prove through debate that I am wrong when you have claimed that I have wrongly used the word religion for what you do which is exactly how religion is defined. You have claimed that all religions are not wrong but have yet to support your claims when I have directly asked you to do so.

        I do care what you believe because that influences my world. This is why I take pains to show how your beliefs are wrong. Your beliefs can and have harmed people. The beliefs of many theists have harmed people, when they think that they and they alone have some magical truth from some magical being that says hate this person and love this one. There is nothing new in your blog, KD. You make the same claims that all TrueTheists make, all without evidence and all assured that their way is the only way. All of your claims of having the truth fail.

        I know you are not infallible, KD. But you claim that you know the mind of God repeatedly, just like other theists whom you don’t agree with. You claim how humble you are, but your actions bely those claims. You cannot show why I should think that your version of Christianity is true, that any version of Christianity is true or why I should be sure that every other religion is false.

        Again, you try to distance yourself from your religion, KD. You want to pretend that it’s those “other” people who are wrong, not KD. You try to claim that it’s not your beliefs that are wrong and cause harm, it’s just Vel who interprets things wrong and who doesn’t look hard enough for evidence of your god. You want to pretend your bible says that God accepts everyone and ignore every bit of it, and other Christians, who say you are wrong (Romans 9: 18 Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden.” Certainly shows that the god in the bible doesn’t accept everyone at all.) Again, who am I to believe, your version of the bible that ignores what bits it doesn’t like? You want a god that loves everyone and it’s the fault of humans not to obey it. Others want to pretend that presdestination is the “truth”, and on and on.

      • My post, The Atheist Debates? Sorry to burst your bubble, it wasn’t about you. If it was, I would have given you all the credit ;)!

        Since you like definitions so much, here’s a few about Religion:

        From the “Define” tab on my iPod notes: 2: a particular system of faith and worship
        3: a pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance

        Note: #2–Atheists put their faith (and possible worship) in humanity. But we have to extend that worship means idolizing particular individuals that set examples for the rest of humanity. I’ll admit this is more of a stretch than definition #3.

        From dictionary.com:

        1. a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, (especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.)—Note: parentheses added as the “especially” is not “exclusively,” meaning that this part is being used to explain the most common usage of this definition but that the definition is not to be used exclusively by that usage.

        2. a specific fundamental set of beliefs and practices generally agreed upon by a number of persons or sects:

        3. the body of persons adhering to a particular set of beliefs and practices:

        4. the life or state of a monk, nun, etc.:

        5. the practice of religious beliefs; ritual observance of faith.

        So, definitions number 1, 2, and 3 (noting the exception in #1) provide that Religion is not based on deities. If you are having too much trouble accepting that by these definitions atheism would fit into a “religion.” maybe referring to it as a worldview is better. You have theists who have a worldview that their is god/s and you have atheists who have a worldview that no god/s exist.

        It’s questionable when atheists think theists need lessons in critical reasoning or logic. Atheists tend to make as many logical fallacies as theists during their arguments, they just irrationally believe that they aren’t. As for critical reasoning, taking a portion of what someone says and defining what you believe they are saying is a poor display of critical reasoning. You pulled many examples of quotations of things I put on my blog or commented here, none of your claims you make about them are supported by anything other than your preconceived notions and assumptions.

        Since you obviously desire or believe that you have “won an argument.” I find my time growing more and more fruitless as you refuse to actually listen.

        As for your molten iron example, next time call it a vat or define the size of the ladle. If I jump into a kitchen sized ladle of molten iron, will I die?

        By the way, your claim that all religions are wrong or in the least responsible for the harm done in the world is illogical. The most logical conclusion is that the same harm would have been done if belief in god/s never existed. Humanity is responsible for the harm done. I find that atheists like to make this claim that religion or belief in god/s is responsible for “all the harm done in the world,” to attempt to make people believe that if it wasn’t for the belief in god/s we would all just get along and live peacefully, which is a baseless assumption.

        Unlike you claim I did: Nowhere do I state that I believe no religions are wrong or bad. I believe there are religions that teach negative values and are bad for humanity. But I also believe there are religions that teach positive values and are good for humanity. I find that it is necessary to differentiate from the two and identify which groups are doing harm and which are not. And more importantly, to learn if an individual has a bad religion or not.

        No where did I ever claim that I am a “TrueChristian” and that only my version of Christianity is correct. I’m leaving my eternity in the hands of Jesus. Until then, I believe God calls me to be responsible for doing good in the world. How I treat others, that I am helping those in need, that I am sharing Christ’s love for all peoples. What you say might be true, that there are no god/s or that the god I believe and trust in is the wrong one. If that is the case than either I have nothing to worry about (god/s don’t exist) or I’m like you and if there is a god other than the one I believe in, that the god/s reveal themselves or provide evidence to change my views of the God I currently believe in.

        About 10 years ago, I had plenty of opportunity to stop believing in God or any god for that matter. If I had gone right instead of left, I would have become a very different person than I am today. Let’s just say, who I was becoming before I met God would not have made the world a better place.

        I don’t ignore the bits of the Bible I don’t like or have a hard time understanding. I take the time to make sense of them, what they are doing there, what it means in today’s culture, etc. I understand there are differing beliefs among Christians. I cannot speak for them and I cannot claim they are wrong, I’m not the judge, God is. For all I know, I am wrong in the things I believe.

        When I post my views on certain scriptures, I’m never saying this is how it should be interpreted. Rather, I’m asking and answering questions that I’ve thought about as I’ve read them. I’m looking at the definitions of the original Hebrew and Greek to have a more rounded concept of the language being used.

        What percentage of your closest friends would you say are theists and what percentage are atheists?

        Do you allow for competing worldviews to be shared or do you ridicule and condemn worldviews that don’t match your own?

        Do you accept worldviews that are like-minded without question or do you treat like-minded worldviews in the same way you treat competing worldviews?

      • oh my, now we have KD insisting that he just happened to write about debating atheists when he has been debating with me. Just a coincidence, you know. He wasn’t “really” bearing false witness since he was just talking about atheists in general…..

        I’ll address the rest of your post, KD, but I do have one question to ask you: I see you have children. Do you tell them that daddy isn’t sure if God/Jesus exists and just hopes his actions bear fruit or do you claim that they do exist?

      • I’m not hear to discuss gods existence but you claim that all religion is wrong and that atheism is not a religion…you said earlier that humanism is not a religion.

        An atheist friend of mine posted this link http://americanhumanist.org/ on Facebook. Looks a lot like a religious website to me…posted beliefs attitudes and where you can find groups of other humanists? We surely can’t ignore the amount of proselytizing atheists do today. I have no issues if you want people to believe as you, but call it what it is: a religion, or a worldview, or a way of life just like people who believe in a god.

        I find the way atheists like you act is no different than the way the “religions” you speak out against act. You treat those who believe in god as what is wrong with the world today. What about religious people like Gandhi or Mother Theresa? What about the thousands of missionaries serving in third world countries that bring needed resources and a message of hope and love. What about the churches that give to the poor in their home towns, who invest in their communities in a positive way? What about countless individuals who believe in God and do no harm to others, who love God and love others, who are working to make the world a better place…even for those who don’t believe in god or believe in a different god/s? When you speak out against ALL religions that believe in gods, you condemn the good with the bad…this is my issue with your post and comments.

        As for my post, consider that recent encounters with you along with other atheists provided the tipping point. I cannot give you credit as I said, otherwise I would have to give over a dozen more atheists who aided in my comments credit as well…thus I made my comments in general. I won’t deny the timing as you say…but you are not solely responsible like you want to believe.

        As for deciding to ask a question about what I teach my kids that has nothing to do with what we are talking about, demonstrates very negatively on you. I will teach my children decidedly better values than your parents apparently taught you. I will teach them to love others, even when they disagree. I will teach them not to condemn anyone, not to judge, not to ardently believe they are always right and someone else is wrong. I will teach them to do good in the world and to the people in the world, not to treat others disrespectfully or with hatred…even when others treat them with disdain. I will teach them that each person believes what they believe for various reasons and must allow them to believe it, if it does harm say something, if it does good celebrate it. I will not teach my children as you will likely teach yours, I will not teach them to hate a belief set that is not my own. I hope this answers your question as we were talking about religion not about belief in god/s. When debating, NEVER bring a persons family or children into it. NEVER. It is in extremely poor taste and a desperate attempt on your part.

      • Well, KD, I know you can’t show that your god exists so whether you are “hear” to claim that makes no impression on me.

        Still with the attempt to claim that humanism is a religion, and the same claims that since anything that anyone pursues as a supreme intent is a religion, then it’s the same as your following your myths.

        I don’t care what you “think” looks like a religious website. But please do tell me what tells you this is a religious website. You can play pretend that the Pittsburgh Pirates website is a religious website too. My oh my, they say that they believe things and that they do things and where you can find other people who believe as you do. Then we must have cosplay as a religion, and beer making as a religion and Star Trek as a religion!

        And hmmm, atheists “proselytize”. Yep, we do try to let people know that they aren’t the only people who don’t believe in claims about gods and the supernatural. You do a fine job of proselytizing on your own blog. Again, atheism is not a religion, just like being bald is not a hair style. Now, KD, if you’d actually do a little research, you’d know that atheists do not share a “worldview” or a “way of life”. All they share is the lack of belief in a god. You’ve been told this repeatedly and you can even witness it on various blogs like say Pharyngula where we have atheists who advocate for social justice and those who have no problem in being assholes who think women are second class citizens.

        KD, you speak out against your fellow Christians. It’s great to see you say that others “misuse” the bible. And please do show me how I “act” like the religions I speak out against. I’m waiting, like I’m waiting for every other bit of evidence I’ve asked you for and which you have yet to provide.

        Again, KD, you lie when you claim that I have said that religion has caused all of the harm in the world. I do get tired of liars but I do like when they show that they don’t believe in the laws of the god they claim to believe in. Gandhi seems to have crafted his own worldview from a number of religions and philosophies. At best he seems to have been a deist rather like Einstein. He did do a lot of good in the world. Mother Teresa was a Catholic who harmed people by refusing them treatment because she thought suffering was good. She also admitted that she did not believe but was faking it. You should do some research before you make claims, KD. As for missionaries, I’ve always found them interesting. Your own bible says that missionaries damn more people than they help, for if they hadn’t not introduced Christianity to others they would not be held accountable for accepting JC as savior. They do bring food, but they also require knowing about the religion, it’s not a free gift, it is an attempt to gain more people for their “team”. I know this since I can watch Christian sects spend millions trying to convert people to their own brand of “truth”. AS for churches who give to the poor in their hometowns, well I have a mailer here from the local mission and a copy of the local yellow pages. There are approximately 10 pages front and back of churches in the area, and we still have the mission begging for help from people.

        Again, you use the strawman claim that I have said that religion causes all harm. I have not and I know perfectly well that there are theists who cause no harm. My parents are some of them. And they believe in lies that cause actions that harm. Again, gods have been invented by humans and reflect their desires and hatreds. We have no evidence of gods being existential beings at all, that have their own attributes. Whether a person does good or evil has nothing to do with gods. I condemn all because they are all nonsense and all cause harm because lies are no way to interact with the world.

        Oh, so now it *is* at least partly me that is the atheist in the post about atheists? Imagine that. And commenting about atheists “in general” does nothing but show you cannot admit that atheists aren’t the “religion” you claim they are at all.

        I figured you’d refuse to answer me about what you tell your kids. But it does have everything to do with our discussion. You have claimed repeatedly that you are humble, that you would never claim that you were the only “right” one. I will ask you about your family and your children if it is germaine to the discussion. And it is. Acting “shocked, shocked” is a very nice dodge on your part. I’m sure you’d come up with something else if I had phrased the question differently because asking you directly what you tell others would reveal more than you’d like.

        You try to claim that I have worse values than you. Nice judgment there! You of course cannot demonstrate this either. I do love others, I do not allow them to tell me lies without being contested. Love is not allowing someone to take advantage of you by telling you that you should fear them or what they claim exists. You have shown that you judge others, KD, when you claim that others “misuse” the bible when they don’t agree with you. Telling, and showing, someone that they are wrong is not condemning them or hating them. Accepting blindly is not love either. Conditions are needed to know what is good, KD, and you use them just like everyone else. I do not have children but I would teach them to question and stand up for the truth, the real truth and not some baseless nonsense that changes with each theist’s interpretation. I would teach them that there are people who will harm and will control and that they must stand up to them no matter if they claim that some magical being supports them.
        It surprises me not one iota (or one jot or tittle) that you now invoke disrespect. Respect is earned, not freely given to anyone who demands it. If you can show me that your claims are true, then you may earn my respect, if not then you are one more of thousands who make the same demands and have the same baseless nonsense. I do not hate you, KD, though I’m sure you hope I do so you can play the martyr. I do hate the harm that religion and belief in imaginary things causes.

        With your claims of loving unconditionally, accepting any belief unconditionally (and hmmm, you did say that some religions do teach bad things to humanity and do cause harm), you seem to be the type of person who would allow slavery to go ahead since someone honestly believed it was the best way. I hate slavery and if that means I hate a belief that is not my own, I’m proud of that.

      • So can you prove you are not religious in you beliefs practices or attitudes? That you do not ardently believe that what you believe, practice, or the attitudes you have are not of “supreme” importance to you? Can you deny your beliefs, attitudes, or practices and consider them “wrong” even for a moment? In denying them, will you not return back to them because you fervently believe they are the right beliefs, attitudes, and practices to have? Please, demonstrate how you are not religious in these things?

        Outside of belief that their is no god/s or the 100% confidence you have that no god/s exist (which is a fundamentalist claim), can you prove you do not religiously pursue what you believe, your attitudes, or your practices? How have you not devoted yourself to the belief that no gods exist? will you teach your children (which I presume you have none at the present time) that gods do not exist or will you allow them to discern for themselves? Will you teach them to “speak out” against religions that do harm, even if what they learn causes harm to others even though it was not the intent of your teaching?

        Yes, you are proud, and pride causes destruction. It causes harm and war. Humility, humbleness, creates peace…don’t believe me, try it?

        As for the Pittsburg Pirates website, it could be a religious website. Many devoted fans spend exorbitant amounts of time following them. We already defined people can be religious about their sports teams. Does a Pittsburg Pirates website teach a religion like the humanist website? No.

        You don’t seek approval from the herd? Then why do you have a website and share commonly accepted beliefs of other atheists? Is it not to find like-minded believers (or non-believers?). Yes, you let theists comment on here…but to deride their beliefs as non-sense. You do not allow for mutual respect or viewpoints to be shared. If it does not match your beliefs it is wrong, no questions needed. As a former “Christian” you know everything about TrueChristianity…yet you demonstration of this is far from true. The TrueChristianity you claim, is based off of your past experiences it is your subjective view of what it is, you speak your views and do not allow others to speak theirs.

        I’m glad to see you are balanced in who you consider your friends. You actively pursue and engage with all of them and their beliefs? And you Consider them your closest friends?

        You keep bringing up atheists not “sharing” a religion, worldview, or way of life? Yes, like theists not all atheists believe exactly what other atheists believe. If this is your definition or defense that atheism is not a religion because they don’t all agree, then theists by the same definition and defense are not religious? Even you admit not all theists believe the same as every other theist. Highly suspect that you cannot support your claims that atheism is not a way if life, worldview, or in some cases (like humanists or groups of atheists gathering to share their views) a religion out side of the god requirement!

      • And again with the claims that I simply have to be religious. That’s great, KD. Again, you have yet to show that atheists all have the same beliefs, practices and attitudes. You claimed this to be true, but where is the evidence to support your claims? I do indeed have my own beliefs and my own attitudes. I find them interesting but only one of “supreme importance”. I do not have any “religious” practices, no matter how broad you want to define religion. There is nothing that I do “religiously”. I *am* ardently in love with my husband. So is that a “religion”? Sure, if you decide that religion means anything that someone does with any interest. It also shows that your religion is just like the one you want to claim I have, that it is only human. It has nothing to do with magical beings that supposedly offer salvation, punishment, etc. It’s just a belief in something that one finds important, nothing more. You have claimed not to be religious, that it is “religion” that is the problem and since you have something other than “religion, then you and your version of Christianity can’t be held responsible. But we know that you have beliefs, practices and attitudes all revolving around the worship of a magical being that you can’t show exists and that is religion.

        I have stated already that yes, I can consider that my beliefs might be wrong. I’d be more than happy to admit that I am wrong about gods, ghosts, fairies, etc. I’m waiting for evidence to show that I’m wrong for not believing in them. Have any? Until I have evidence that I am wrong, there is no reason to assume I am just because someone like you says that they have an invisible friend, that this invisible friend created the universe, that stories in the bible are true, etc.. You have no evidence to show that your claims are true. So again, why should I accept your claims of the “truth” and not someone else’s? I’d love to know that there really is magic and gods. Life would be much more interesting if there were. But the simple desire for a much more interesting universe is no reason to deny reality.
        At this point, I am still waiting for *any* evidence for your god, any other gods or any other supernatural beings/occurrences. Consider the claims of the magical flood in the bible. There is no evidence that this occurred. Not one scrap. There *is* evidence that something else happened instead, the same deposition of sediments that we see now. Since both things can’t have happened, there is positive evidence that your religion’s claims are wrong. It is very cute to watch a TrueChristian claim that I am a “fundamentalist” in being sure 100% that his god doesn’t exist. I am just as sure that there is no silver tea set orbiting Zeta Reticuli. I don’t “have faith” that there is no Christian god or tea set, all evidence points to that there are neither.

        You certainly are desperate to claim I have a religion just like you. No, KD, I have not “devoted” myself to “not believing in God”. I haven’t devoted myself to not playing violin either.

        I have no children. If I did, I would allow them to investigate religions on their own, like my folks did. Yep, one more assumption on your part that crashes and burns. I will teach them how to consider claims and how to think critically. I will teach them to speak out against lies that intend on scaring people and promising them things that don’t exist. The only lie I find acceptable is that which saves someone’s life, as in telling the Nazis that I have no idea where Anne Frank is hiding. You ask: “Will you teach them to “speak out” against religions that do harm, even if what they learn causes harm to others even though it was not the intent of your teaching?” What kind of harm, KD? Tell me what kind of harm you think telling the truth will do?

        Oh and the pious claim that pride causes destruction. Arrogance can cause destruction because it’s built on lies. I know you can look up the definition of pride as well as I. Now, what does it say, KD? Is pride always toxic? No, it’s not. I’m proud that I stand against slavery, something that your bible supports. I’m proud that I don’t condemn people to death for being different, which is something that your bible supports. Yep, bring on those threats of destruction. They are just the claims of a sycophant to an abusive imaginary being. I know your god is all about the humble. That’s what a dictator loves, those that are submissive, a just as valid definition of humility and humbleness. Humbleness and humility can help create peace but it is the hard work, work that people are justifiably proud of, that also creates and keeps the peace. Submission doesn’t keep the peace, unless you think not questioning is “peace”.

        You say that “Does a Pittsburg Pirates website teach a religion like the humanist website? No.” Ah, now we are getting somewhere. Now you define religion as something that can be taught. I can teach people to like the Pirates, by telling them that they are the best, by excusing their failure, etc. There is information about the Pirates on the website and there is information about humanism on the AHA’s website. Both are causing people to know something, a definition of teaching. There appears to be no difference. You claim that there is one so please explain what difference you see. I do see that humanism is being discussed and defined. And there are types of humanism, including religious, Christian and secular. So, if one can define humanism as religious or not, then it is not a religion.

        No, KD, I don’t seek approval from the herd. I have a website because I like to write. I don’t give a damn about anyone opinions of what I write. If someone finds it useful or it stirs someone to think, that’s nice but not necessary. And commonly accepted beliefs of atheists? What are those, beyond there is no god/s? Again, you’ve claimed that atheists have some mysterious uniform belief system and again you fail to support that. Nope, it’s not to find like minded people. If I wanted that, I can go to a bunch of atheist forums. Your assumptions about me fail again, unsurprisingly. Putting out a blog in hopes to find people is like peeing in the Amazon River and hoping someone down stream notices. That may be what you want, KD; I do not.

        I allow theists to comment on my blog because I welcome their thoughts. Perhaps someday one of you will actually have evidence for your claims. It is not my fault that you do not and I will hold you accountable. You seem to think you can demand respect from people, KD. Respect is earned, and you have not earned it with baseless claims. Do you respect those who claim that the attempted genocide of the Jews in Europe never occurred? I don’t, and I am proud not to put up with such nonsense. I have allowed you to share your viewpoints repeatedly and to claim I have not is quite a lie on your part. You have also lied when you claim that “. If it does not match your beliefs it is wrong, no questions needed.” Since I take great pains to explain why your beliefs are wrong. I do not simply dismiss them with no thought. As a former Christian, I know much about Christianity and all of its versions, and it’s nice to see that you again form a strawman to attack when you falsely claim that I somehow think I know everything about “TrueChristianity”. You claim that I somehow demonstrate that this false claim of yours is far from true. You also seem unable to comprehend that when I say TrueChristianity, I mean every version of Christianity that you and others espouse and cannot support as being the only true version. My past experiences do not change the fact that Christians cannot agree on what their god really wants or what it really meant in its supposed holy book. And again, a lie that I do not allow others to speak their views. What have you been doing all of this time, KD? Why you’ve been speaking your views and claiming that mine are wrong. You seem to think that to allow you to speak your views I must remain silent no matter what. No, KD, you can speak your views *and* be held accountable for them. It seems to be that you are afraid of having anyone actually acknowledge your views and then hold them up for scrutiny.

        More questions about my friends. Nice to see that you doubt my words for no reason. Yes, I do actively pursue and engage with all of them and do consider them my closest friends. You see, KD, I don’t believe that I should stay away from people who don’t agree with me, as your bible says you should, or that people who don’t agree with me are going to be tortured for eternity. I don’t even believe my enemies deserve such a ridiculous and petty punishment.

        If one says “a religion” one means a specific one. So, I can say that Christianity is a religion, Judaism is a religion, Islam is a relgion. People are religious in regards to their respective religion. Now, most Christians will claim that all Christians follow the same beliefs and that any differences aren’t important. You can see this in my exchange with Potato on this blog if you doubt me. Now, atheism is one conclusion that there are no god/s. That’s it, one single concept agreed upon. Atheism has nothing more to it. You claim that I cannot support my claims that atheism is not a way of life. That is false, I have done so because I can say that atheism is only the lack of belief in god/s. There is nothing else to it. By definition, and we do have a lot of them exchanged here, need to have nothing else in common, no other beliefs, practices or attitudes. You have claimed that atheists do have these multiple things in common and have yet to provide me a list of what an atheist have as a way of life. I invite you to go onto an atheist forum, the one at Why God Won’t Heal Amputees has a good one http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/ and put a post up about something like politics, vegetarianism, abortion, etc. And you’ll get a real life example of how atheists do not share a way of life. Now will you go there and do this or are you happy to keep your strawman atheist you’ve invented?

      • As for your comment about my post “now being partly about you.” My claim was that it was not solely about you. You are making many arguments from silence. I could not give you ALL of the credit because it was not solely about you which still seems to be how you’ve taken it (that it was all about you and our conversation) But alas, the theist needs lessons in critical reasoning and logical fallacies…

      • KD, you said “Sorry to burst your bubble, it wasn’t about you.” This does not say that the post “wasn’t solely about you”.

        Please do show where I am making arguments from silence. I know what they are. I am curious to see what you find them to be in my writings. And an argument from silence can be effective arguments and are not always logical fallacies. They are not the best, but they can work.

      • Finally, are you saying that my religious beliefs, practices, and attitudes are wrong because the bring harm to the world or solely because I believe God exists?

        If I spread a message of unconditional love and acceptance, how is this wrong or bad?

        I acknowledge that in our world people are taught bad things or do harm to humanity. It is not just religion or belief in gods that does this. It is humanity that does it. To make a claim that you have no religion at all based on you do not believe in any god/s is incredibly ignorant.

        Never did I state that I do not have religion. Again, you made this claim not I. I stated that I do not believe the Bible to teach religion. And I also stated that people form religion from the Bible. These are two separate claims of which I believe you to know very little about. For some reason, you are unable to differentiate between religion and belief in god/s. One is natural (religion) the other is supernatural (god/s).

        To demonstrate this, Italian Football Hooligans are highly religious when it comes to their team. Even to the point where they will begin riots against opposing fans. Often resulting in death. They will also make ape noises if their is an footballer who is of African descent. Their religion of football has nothing to do with belief in any God. This is a bad religion, it has bad teaching. It comes from pride.

        You’re beliefs, practices, and attitudes, even though you don’t believe them to be religious. Are to speak out against the harms of religion. In doing so you condemn, ridicule, attempt to persuade them to test their faith by jumping into a vat of molten iron, state that what they believe is wrong or non-sense. What does this belief, practice, or attitude teach future generations?

      • KD, I have said and am saying that religions cause harm because of what they claim to be true. Religions make baseless claims that cause harm.

        Your version of Christianity, as all of the other versions of Christianity, has nothing to support that it is true or that all of the other versions and religions, are false. You have made up a version of Christianity that is supposedly unconditional love and acceptance. Your bible does not support that at all; your god has condition after condition for getting his supposed love and acceptance. Indeed your own words do not support that claim, with all of your false claims about atheists. There is nothing in what you have posted about atheists that shows that you love them or accept them. Love and acceptance is not telling untruths about someone, KD. Love is not saying “love me or else.”

        Your religion also includes misinformation on science, your posts about creationism, which harms people because it makes them ignorant. You wish to enjoy science when it makes you comfy but ignore it when it shows your myths to be wrong. Your religion depends on ignorance to keep its claims and that harms people. I do not think that ignorance equals bliss.

        Again, I never said that religion was the only culprit in causing harm. Religion gives reasons to cause harm. It may have had some use but there no longer is a need for religion that only serves to distinguish an “us” and “them”. I have no religion at all, and I have shown that not to be “incredibly” ignorant. It’s nice to see you keep trying so very hard to ignore the definition of religion I was using in my original post. I was talking about religion as the beliefs, practices and attitudes related to the worship of a divine being. You see, context matters, and it’s hilarious to see a TrueChristian try to ignore context when so many of you insist that atheists ignore context.

        You claim that “Never did I state that I do not have religion.” You said the following on your own blog “What happens in most cases when people don’t like one religion is that they try another one or create their own. I hate it. I hate that I am prone to religion. Like I said, the answer to religion is Jesus.”. and “I see a lot of people who misuse the Bible as a source to preach their message of intolerance (i.e., religion).” This certainly seems like a denial of having a religion to me. I am sorry if I read this wrong. Did I, KD? The bible tells people to form a religion from it: it teaches exactly a set of beliefs, attitudes and practices involving the worship of a deity. Religion is the action resulting from a belief in god. As James said, “Faith without works is dead.”

        I am one atheist who speaks out against the harms of religion. So, now I’m magically a religion unto myself. Time to apply for non-profit status so I don’t have to pay taxes. You again forget your many attempts to define religion. Do I find my speaking out against religion my supreme interest? Nope.
        I do like how you claim that I “attempt to persuade them to test their faith by jumping into a vat of molten iron” No, I said this “I am 100% right that if you throw yourself into a ladle of molten iron, you will die. If you don’t think I’m right, do so.” You really think I’m trying to convince people to jump into a vat of molten iron? No, I’m not. It’s an instance of hyperbole, same with when I mentioned the prussic acid . However, I will mention that if you are really sure that I am not 100% certain, there should be no indignation on your part. The fact that you are having a problem with me making such a suggestion seems to show that you agree with me that I am 100% certain because you think it’s awful that I would want someone to burn to death.

        Ideas have been condemned, ridiculed, shown wrong and called nonsense for millennia. For instance, your bible says that other ideas are wrong. It says to stone to death someone who suggests following another god at worst and says that they are “accursed” at best. You have claimed that ideas other than your own are wrong when you have declared that anyone who does not agree with you is wrong: “I see a lot of people who misuse the Bible as a source to preach their message of intolerance (i.e., religion).” Indeed what does that teach future generations? Well, it tells them some ideas are wrong and ridiculous. Or do you believe any idea should be considered just as good as the next? It certainly seems that you don’t think that at all by your own words and declaration that you know what is being “misused”. You want to be a theologian and an apologist, KD. Both are concerned with saying that your claims are right and everyone else’s are wrong.

      • for someone who was so indignant that I dare mention children, I find it curious that you display your children.

        I shall be back to address various posts in a day or two when I’m off work.

      • I shared the video so you could see who you were trying to drag into the conversation. Again, look to understand rather than assume. I “display my child” in response to your “mentioning or questioning” of how I might raise my children.

        I presumed that you have not had children yet, because I would assume if you did, you would know better than to use them to attempt such a poor argument. Your question showed a lack of decency, so rather than being shocked, I was appalled. I hoped the video might appeal to you sense of humanity…perhaps I was wrong?

        As for “addressing various posts” do not bother unless you are actually willing to listen to my comments rather than telling me what my comments mean. I also suggest you go back through my comments and consider asking, what if Vel is wrong and he is right? Are you that afraid of doubting what you believe as true? You’ve shared it happened before when you were a Christian, that you began struggling with your faith that any god existed? Or are you too religious in you beliefs, attitudes, and practices of atheism to truly question them and the possibility that you are the one who is wrong? You are determined to believe you are absolutely right about everything you say…this is why in my post I state no one is 100% right. You took that to mean someone cannot be 100% right about anything.

        Yes 1+1=2, you can be 100% certain of that. But your question of the sun always rising in the East can be questioned. While the statement appears true, philosophically you can question the terms “rise” and “East” or you could question the permanence of the sun; I find your statement could be as such: “If the sun is maintained in it’s current existing state as a celestial body, and does in fact ‘rise,’ one would expect it to first appear in the direction we call ‘East’.” Doubt is a natural response to uncertainty, it is a good thing, not bad like most people believe. It allows us to question our beliefs, practices, and attitudes in the case that they might be wrong. The fundamental beliefs, practices, and attitudes are ones of people who believe they 100% certain they are “right.” Which are you?

      • KD, I have not watched your video. I have no idea why you would want to show me it, other than you think it might make feel, what? Guilty? Oh the poor little girl, how dare I think to question her daddy! And oh my, appealing to my sense of humanity, aka if I don’t agree with you, I’m not human. Nice sentiment there. I am not dragging your children into anything. I am asking *you* what you tell your children about your religion. I am asking if you tell them what you have told me, that you are not sure that your religion is true. If I must be blunt, KD, do you lie to others concerning your religion?

        Asking you if you teach your children a certain way has nothing to do with decency. It’s asking you, a Christian who has claimed to doubt his religion, if he is honest about that doubt. Shall I ask the question another way, do you tell anyone, anyone at all, that you aren’t sure that Jesus is the savior, or do you do as your blog shows, claim that it’s true without any evidence? The reason that asking about children is relevant is that children learn theism. It’s not some magic knowledge that they already have. They are taught to believe by people they have a reason to trust, and will only learn the religion they are taught. No one is born a theist, or a Christian, Muslim, Wiccan, Jew, etc. Now, if parents do not tell their children the truth, that shows that belief is passed on by deceit. It may not be intentional, due to ignorance, but it is not the truth.

        I am addressing your posts and I am listening to what you have to say. You are again lying when you claim I am not. I have always asked what if you were right and I was wrong. There is no evidence to support your claims, KD, so why would I consider something that is not supported? Just because you insist that it’s true? Then I may as well believe in the Westboro Baptist Church’s version, or the Roman Catholic Church, or Islam, or any other religion. You are no more likely right than any of them. I question my beliefs always. You of course have to pretend that I’m not “truly questioning” them. You need to claim that if I “truly questioned” my beliefs, I’d immediately agree with you. Alas, for you, I have truly questioned them and your claims still fail.

        I am not determined to believe I am absolutely right. You have failed to show that I am wrong. I may not be 100% right but that does not prevent you, and every other theist, from being 100% wrong about what you claim. You have yet to show that I am wrong about what I have said. I ask for evidence repeatedly, evidence to support your accusations at least? I believe I’ve said please every time I’ve requested evidence so you can find each instance by a simple search.

        ROFL. No, KD, you can’t question the terms “rise” and “east” at all. In context, the terms are concrete. We know that rise actually means that the earth has rotated to reveal the sun, not that it literally elevates above a fixed horizon. We know that east is the direction that the earth rotates. The sun will always rise in the east with the parameters as we are discussing the moment which are implied in the context of the discussion. Why yes, one can claim that if the sun vanished, it would cease to rise. Let me place your nonsense in a more religious context. “Jesus Christ rose from the dead.” Now, this statement doesn’t even appear true. We can “philosophically question” the terms rose and dead. I can find your statement to be just as much a legend or at best a metaphor for humanity gaining more empathy as a claim of a real event.

        In that you cannot show that your religion/belief is true, you must rely on philosophical contortions to have any hope that it is true. Christians always start with claims that they have evidence of their god, fail to realize that they will be called on it and end up trotting out philosophy as if philosophy demonstrates reality. After that, we end up in solipsism where the theist claims that no one can know anything for sure, so then God simply must exist.

        Doubt is indeed a good thing. I doubt your claims and I can show that they are nonsense. If you are sure that I’m wrong, then you must show evidence for that, *and* evidence that your claims are right as opposed to all of the other claims of theists. I’ve been waiting for a while now. I still have no reason to not think that I’m 100% correct when it comes to there being no god/s, especially one with the attributes you give it. It’s up to you to show me I am not.

      • Vel, I’m not going to sit here and argue with you. I stand by my statements. The questions raised were of religion not of the existence of gods…you can’t seem to differentiate the two. They are not prerequisites of one another…someone can believe in gods and not be religious and someone can be religious and not believe in gods. If you don’t believe me that my questioning was of religion and not the existence of gods go back and look at my very first comment, it was about the values that are taught. Then look at the remainder of my comments and try reasoning what it is I’m saying rather than what you claim I am saying based off of what you believe.

        As for asking what I will teach my children, if or when you have children of your own you will understand. The issue of decency was with the attempted argument you were raising, as you were suggesting that what I would teach my children would bring harm to the world. I shared the link to a video of my daughter to invite you to see her and what my wife and I teach her. As for my comment on your sense of humanity, why would I appeal to it if I believed you were not human? Quite the opposite, I believe you to be very human no different from myself.

        I do not doubt that God exists or Jesus rose from the dead. I doubt that I am absolutely right about everything I believe to be true. While I believe God is not infallible, I cannot say the same for myself. While you believe the evidence against God or Jesus rising from the dead is enough, I’m more skeptical about it than you.

        My quote that you pulled from my site, stated “I hate that I am prone to religion…” Did you miss this part? That I sometimes follow man made religion rather than trusting and following Jesus?

        I stand corrected on the phrasing about my post. To my defense, I had to rewrite my reply a half a dozen times for various reasons, half of the rewrites I had written “solely.” Of course I have no proof of this only my subjective claim that I did in fact do as I said I did.

        I write for the same reasons as you. I enjoy writing, I enjoy learning new things, I enjoy expressing what I’ve come to know during my time on Earth…how ever short that time may be. I desire to see a better tomorrow, I believe that is the message of the Bible. I also believe that is only possible with the help of God. You can criticize all you want. You can claim what you believe the Bible or God says, but you have no idea what I believe. Mostly, because you would rather tell me that I am wrong, that I believe in non-sense, etc. Theology and Apologetics is not about claiming, “I am right.” Theology is about understanding God’s word, who He is, and what He desires. Apologetics, is defending what one believes as true, one can doubt while still defending it. Do I want others to agree and be inspired? Yes, I want to see the world changed for the better. I want to see hate and war end, I want to see people love and care for each other, I desire to see a world where people have mutual respect for one another. I believe this to be what Jesus and the New Testament teaches.

        Like I said, you can claim otherwise, but that is your beliefs of what the Bible teaches not mine.

        My creationism posts, how do they teach ignorance? They teach what science teaches and how I view a connection to the first two verses of Genesis? That perhaps a literal understanding or even the most common interpretation of them might be short-sighted. Yes, the Hebrew is translated to “without form” but did you read the whole post? I thought I explained it. As for the flood…I’ll give you the spoiler…the Bible is not specific on whether “the whole Earth” means the entire globe or just the region where the flood occurred. There is plenty of evidence of “great floods” occurring in the region the Bible is talking about. This was not uncommon in ancient writings to refer to a region of the world as “the whole Earth.”

        Other than that, I have done my best to question your understanding of things and the parts of you posts and comments I disagree with. I will reiterate, I am not here to “prove God exists,” to criticize or condemn you of your beliefs, or to claim you are absolutely wrong. If you took anything I said that way, I feel you have misinterpreted my comments.

        You made the comment that when you have children you will teach them to make their own decisions about believing in gods. Will you criticize them as being ignorant or believing in non-sense if one day they come home and tell you they believe in any god? I have met many atheist parents who have done this.

        I find that the values (which I explained) I plan to teach my children will hopefully keep them from harm or harming others, the question was asked whether what you say and do regarding people who believe differently will be taught to your children. If you teach them to criticize or condemn they will learn to do that, and likely learn to do it in a worse way than you taught them. Go back to my first comment if you don’t agree.

      • KD, I know you don’t want to discuss aka “argue” your claims anymore. You have certainly have tried to do so for the last few days but it’s always easy to see the end game coming from a TrueChristian. You have shown that you only want to claim that your version is the right one and have no one show that you are wrong. The existence of gods is dependent on religion and vice versa. I was discussing the definition of religion as those beliefs, attitudes and practices of those who believe in gods when I wrote my original blog post. I was not discussing the later added definitions of religion, which were formed considering the actions of theists that the original definition remarked upon. Religion defined as “obsessed” was after religion defined as actions dependent on belief in a god. For example, Red Sox fans can follow their team *as if* following a religion.

        It was you who decided to claim that he did not have a religion and that it was not his beliefs that were responsible for the problems I have cited. In my blog post, they are indeed prerequesites for the other, since I used a very specific definition of religion. I was not talking about soccer hooligans or Red Sox fans, I was talking about people who believe in a god and whose actions are dependent on that belief. You have tried to disassociate the terms for the sole purpose of denying responsibility.

        I know you have questioned religion in your blog . You want to claim that you don’t have a religion (you have thus reversed your stance but only as claiming that you have a religion but you don’t want to in the broadest sense of the term). You have said that religions are wrong and that they aren’t what your god intended. However, by definition, your bible teaches a religion, it is a set of beliefs, attitudes and practices that control how you life your life, and becomes your “way of life”, because you believe in the deity that supposed decreed them.

        I have heard the nonsense that “once you have children you’ll understand” before. That’s just an attempt to avoid explaining anything, and it’s sadly wrong since there is nothing that changes about people after they have children. They are the same people, good or bad that they were before, and often children pay the price of that. There is nothing about having children that will alter how reality works. There is nothing “indecent” about asking if someone will lie to a child. I know you find the question uncomfortable. I would as the same question of any theist or of anyone who would tell a child something that was not true e.g. people who claim falsely that vaccines universally harm people.

        Again, you and your child and your family may be decent people. That again does not prevent you from being wrong, just as there are many other theist parents in the world and they are likely decent people but are also wrong. I’ll ask one more time, KD, do you tell your child, someone who has reason to trust you, that your version of your religion is the only true one or do you tell her that you aren’t sure? I would also ask, do you tell her to trust anyone who claims to be good? You claim that you have unconditional love and acceptance. This would seem to indicate that you do not question others. Now, most parents do have a healthy amount of caution. Do you share that caution, having your belief that your god will take care of you, but also doing things to take care of yourself? Or you just accept things blindly, as you seem to indicate you do with your claims of complete acceptance and complete unconditional love?

        You have claimed that you were appealing to my humanity and were “perhaps” wrong. That doesn’t seem to indicate you believe me to be like yourself. It seemed to be some kind of ridiculous test.

        Thanks for finally admitting that you don’t think you are wrong about God existing or Jesus rising from the dead. You now have claimed you are 100% sure of this, yes? But you have no evidence. And there is no reason for me to think you are right or that a Muslim is right, or that a Wicca is right. I am interested to see that you think God is not infallible. “While I believe God is not infallible, I cannot say the same for myself. “ I’m guessing that that was a slip.

        You say that you are skeptical about the “evidence against God or Jesus rising”. I’d like to explore that. What evidence are you skeptical about? Most Christians insist that there is no evidence at all that God doesn’t exist or that Jesus didn’t rise from the grave.

        I did indeed see the part where you say that you hate that you are “prone to religion”. That says that you have a tendency for it. It doesn’t say that you have one. You seem to be going out of your way to claim that you don’t, yes? You follow the bible and religion, and yes, both are man-made. You claim to trust and follow Jesus but you have made up what that Jesus is, KD, just like every other Christian. You want a version that agrees with your hates and desires. For instance, we have you claiming that your Christianity is unconditional love and acceptance. You can indeed pick and choose a Jesus that supports that. You can also pick and choose a Jesus that says abandon the family, bring those who don’t worship him before him to be killed, that kills a fig tree in a fit of pique when the fig tree wasn’t even in season. I can take the “love is” verses from 1 Corinthians and show that your god fails every one of those comparisons by using verses in the bible. The bible is a Rorschach Test for those who claim it is true.

        KD, now you say you write for the same reasons as me, but you insisted that I had to have other reasons before I corrected you.

        You may believe that the bible’s message is of a “better tomorrow” but again that’s your version. You claim that your god helps, but there is no evidence for this. I do know what you believe, because you’ve told me, KD. I can read your posts here and your posts on your blog. I can show exactly what you have said. Do I know every nuance? Nope, but since all Christians make their beliefs up, that’s no surprise. You do believe in nonsense if you have no evidence for the things you believe in existing. I’d say the same thing about another type of theist, a person who believes in reptiloids, fairies or anything else that has not one scrap of evidence for it.

        Theology and apologetics are indeed about claiming that your version is right. Theology is based on claiming that you understand what this god is. Each faith system, each religion, has a theology that states that their god is this and such. It is proclaimed as a universal truth. You are sure that your god is unconditionally loving. Another Christian is sure that he is not. Your theology differs from each others. Apologetics is indeed defending what you think is *true* aka right. And to doubt something while still defending it? So you’d defend what could be a lie and tell others to believe it even if they were damned for getting it wrong since you were wrong? Honestly KD, I find that inexcusable.

        You seem to want the world changed for the better, but “better” is that everyone agree with you. I would like to see hate and war end but if your bible is correct, your god loves those things. Just take a look at Revelation. There is no “mutual respect” there, KD. Do you want to claim that that part of the bible is wrong? A metaphor? And I have no respect for a person just to do so. I have no respect for those who claim that a person’s skin color makes them less than human. I have no respect for a person who claims that a person can’t love whom they wish to. I have no respect for a person who says that they deserve more than I because they worship a certain being. When you claim that you want to have mutual respect for “everyone” you are including people like I’ve mentioned, KD. Do you respect, have a deep feeling of admiration, a high regard, for those people, KD? Do you think they would have the same thing for you?

        You are right, you believe the bible teaches something different than I do. You believe that the bible teaches something different than other Christians do. And again, what reason is there to think that *any* of you are right? You seem to have indicated to me that you would lie to someone to get them to agree with you, even if you had some doubts yourself. That is one of the reasons I see religion/faith as being wrong, it is dependent on lies told to convince yourself you are right since you work to grow a herd that agrees with you. There is a good article about cults in the latest Harper’s Magazine. It says that people begin to believe the nonsense that they tell because they get external validation.

        Your creationism posts teach ignorance because they intentionally obscure the truth. You want to pretend that the bible’s creation account agrees with evidence that has been discovered. However, you conveniently ignore that your bible itself can’t agree on what the creation story really is since it presents two that have the events out of order. I have seen the “harmonization” for this and it just cracks me up. You pick and choose your bible bits to what kind of agrees with reality. Here we go again with a TrueChristian who is sure that his version is the only right one, that everyone else’s “might be short-sighted”. I know you came up with an explanation on why the bible is wrong and you are right about the “formlessness”,KD.Again, nothing new in that. Of course, you offer more claims that the bible is not “specific” on what the whole world “really” is in relationship to the flood. That might work if the bible didn’t also claim that *all* mountains were covered, that *all* people (sans family Noah) were killed, that *all* life was destroyed. There is indeed evidence for floods happening all over the earth, but none of them have covered the all of the mountains, not even that they covered one mountain. You claim that it is not “uncommon” in ancient writings to call a region the “whole earth”. Can you give me examples? I am relatively familiar with ancient writings and seem to recall them being fairly specific in naming regions specific names. I do recall documents saying the “whole earth” and that does seem to mean exactly that.

        Again, KD, you have claimed I am wrong, you have claimed other people are wrong. I do see now that you try to qualify that you are not telling me I’m “absolutely wrong”. I did not misinterpret when you say that my conclusions are wrong. It’s pretty damn obvious what you meant.

        And more about my theoretical children. Yes, KD, I will tell my children, and anyone else, that they believe in nonsense if they come home and say they belief in god for the same poor reasons you do. To simply smile stupidly and say “golly, that’s great.” is disrespectful to me and to them. If your beliefs can’t be challenged, then they aren’t much. And met “many atheists parents” eh? :)

        Oh and nice baseless claim “If you teach them to criticize or condemn they will learn to do that, and likely learn to do it in a worse way than you taught them.” What evidence do you have of that, KD? Hmmm? Or is this like so many times before, that when I ask for evidence, you fail to give it.

      • I’ve decided to answer your question about slavery. Of course the answer is never as simple as the question. William Wilberforce, the name of the most prominent abolitionist in England in spearheading the end of the slave trade. Was a devout follower of Christ.

        I can only assume that you believe the Bible to teach slavery to be okay. It does, just not the slavery that was in America pre-Civil War. The type of slavery found in the Bible would be along the lines of the least desirable jobs, the lowest paid jobs, etc. we have available in society today. When Paul writes about it, today it would translate to: “If you do not have the skills, or the experience, or the right connections to improve your job title or position…work as if for The Lord. If the opportunity arises that you take on more responsibility in your job or you have opportunities for advancement, take them but still work as if for The Lord. Are having people do these types of jobs and work in this way acceptable?

        So, as you ask the question (or make a statement that KD seems like the type that would let slavery go because someone honestly believes it’s the best way), you are wrong. The treatment of slaves in America was not only unbiblical, it was unethical. Your claim is also suggestive that I simply follow the crowd and am afraid to have a mind of my own…God has created me with a mind that thinks independently from what others say is best…a mind that explores claims and reasons to decide what I believe is best. I don’t simply go along with something because it’s popular opinion.

        You also misrepresent my comments of unconditional love and acceptance. Like my invitation to view the video of my daughter…I invited unconditionally the opportunity to meet my family on a more personal level. In your decision to not view the video, have I rejected you or have you rejected my invitation? You might view my other comments regarding my posting the link contradictory to this one, they are not I assure you.

      • Oh I’m so grateful! :) The answer is the same excuses that all TrueChristians offer. I know perfectly well that some Christians did not support slavery. This is opposition to what the bible says:

        Laws on how to do it: Exodus 21, Leviticus 25. If this god was against slavery, why not say “Don’t do it.”? I do like the bit where you can either separate a family to get your freedom or remain a slave to remain with your spouse and children. That’s one of the most powerful images of slavery in the US, where a family is split and sold. It’s also great to see that a father can sell his daughter as a slave. All approved by God himself, since it is supposedly God dictating these laws to Moses.

        1 Timothy 6 “All who are under the yoke of slavery should consider their masters worthy of full respect, so that God’s name and our teaching may not be slandered. 2 Those who have believing masters should not show them disrespect just because they are fellow believers. Instead, they should serve them even better because their masters are dear to them as fellow believers and are devoted to the welfare of their slaves.”

        And my favorite bit 1 Peter 2- “18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 21 To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.”

        So don’t try to get away, don’t seek your freedom, stay right where you are and put up with pain and suffering. So, KD, should Harriet Tubman done this? Would you put up with this if you are enslaved or would you decided that this god didn’t really mean this, but you should really seek your freedom?

        So, yes, the bible claimed as the word of the Christian god supports slavery. Now, the common Christian claim is that the bible only is talking about indentured servitude, but that is false. Leviticus 25 has exactly the difference between the two. Let’s look at what it says: “44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. 45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. 46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.”

        So your claim that the bible isn’t talking about pre-Civil War slavery is false. Your bible is saying it’s fine to take people from another country and keep them slaves for life. And golly, that’s just what pre-Civil War slavery was! It sure was unethical, but it was completely biblical. They are to be considered *property*. Your claims that”The type of slavery found in the Bible would be along the lines of the least desirable jobs, the lowest paid jobs, etc. we have available in society today” are nonsense since McDonald’s cannot own people as property. McDonald’s can’t not pay people, sell them or any of the other things your bible says is fine. You see, KD, I have read the bible, I don’t depend on someone to tell me what this god “really” meant.

        Again, I see the magic decoder ring come out insisting that your god can’t possibley have meant what was directly said. And of course, your interpretations are just as worthwhile as the interpretations of all of the Christians you disagree with, worth nothing at all.

        I don’t misrepresent your claims about unconditional love at all. I show exactly what you have said yourself. We see no love without conditions, just as we see no love without conditions from your god. You are sure that slavery is “unethical”, so you are sure it is a wrong belief, again showing that your claims that all beliefs should not be contested and accepted are more attempts to blow smoke.

        Your family is nothing special, KD. I don’t care if you have a wonderful family. That’s great, but that doesn’t say that your beliefs aren’t wrong. Your posting of your video was, admitted by you, an attempt to make me feel something, to show I was “human” as you personally want to define it. That seems to make it only an appeal to emotion, that “why no decent looking people could be wrong”, and that doesn’t work.

        I’ll get to the rest of your posts later.

      • You do realize that all of your arguments so far have all been strawman, arguments from silence, or arguments from ignorance, right?

        Good, you’ve read the Bible, or at least the parts atheists like to use against theists. But do you understand the Bible?

        You must understand that you are trying to cover a historical and cultural gap, not to mention the language gap. It’s easy to take things from the Bible and use them out of context. Of course, atheists like to use the Bible should be literal across history, culture, and language if it comes from the true god…this argument, if you haven’t guessed it, is a Strawman.

        Change takes time. Watch the progression throughout the Old Testament into the New Testament and the command of Jesus to his disciples to carry throughout the world. It’s not only revolutionary, it’s evolutionary.

        Guess what. I accept you even though I believe you are wrong. I question what you believe and state what I believe that differs from you. You believe respect must be earned, I believe respect should be given. I do not reject your ideas, beliefs, practices, or attitudes. This however does not mean I cannot contest them. The reason I contest them, is not to prove I am right or you are wrong, because I understand that I could be wrong and you could be right. This is how I view unconditional acceptance.

      • KD, you have claimed “You do realize that all of your arguments so far have all been strawman, arguments from silence, or arguments from ignorance, right?”

        No, I do not “realize” this since I have not. It’s always nice to see someone try to make claims without evidence. I expect you to show me where you think I have done so. Please proceed. I have no problem in admitting I have done something if I indeed have done it. Can you show me where?

      • I’ve indeed read the bible, all of it. Nice assumption that I haven’t and more specious accusations. And why yes, I do understand the bible, at least as well as you do. Or any other Christian who disagrees with you.

        I “must” do nothing you command, KD. There is a historical, cultural and language gap, I know this. It is TrueChristians as yourself who claim that they can get universal truths out of such a mangled compilation of writings. It’s always great to see a TrueChristian bring up “context” when they want to claim I’m wrong or that their fellow TrueChristians are wrong. And it’s always absolutely fun to watch a TrueChristian declaring that he and he alone knows what parts of the bible are to be considered literal and what are to be considered metaphor “across history, culture and language” as if it came from a omnipotent, omniscient and omnibenevolent god. I agree your argument “Of course, atheists like to use the Bible should be literal across history, culture, and language if it comes from the true god” is indeed a strawman argument, on your part, since I do not claim this and never have. You are attempting to argue against a position that I have not taken, KD. And that is exactly what a strawman argument is. I would ask you, how is intentionally creating confusion being a loving god, if this nonsense did come from the god you claim?

        Change does take time. And your faith has changed with time, each generation sure that they were the right ones, that their god would return for *them*. It is indeed evolutionary, since the claims of “universal truth” have been anything but true. To claim that a omnipotent god couldn’t make change immediate, or indeed a lot faster, is ridiculous. We have a compilation of books that have a god that cannot get things right. We have a god sure that the flood would work. Then he gives laws to be followed, sure that they can be and will be followed. It then takes a fit when they aren’t. Then it finally decides that what it really wanted is that it will consider unconditional sin true, something that the Jews didn’t seem to believe in, and sacrifice itself to itself to correct this problem that it caused.

        I can accept you because you are wrong too, KD. Whoop-de-doo. Acceptance isn’t respect. I can show you are wrong and I can disrespect you for telling lies to people when you yourself aren’t sure if you are right (if that is indeed the case, which I confess I doubt). You have yet to show that you are right. You *have* rejected my ideas, practices, beliefs and attitudes when you claim I am wrong. By contesting them, you are saying that you reject them, e.g. “to refuse to accept, consider, submit to, take for some purpose, or use.” You contest them, you challenge them because you think you are right. If you don’t contest them because you think I am wrong and you are right, why do you do it? Because you want to see my arguments because you think you are wrong? Hmmm, maybe that is indeed what it is.

        And again, you claim unconditional acceptance. KD, straight questions, would you allow the Nazis to remain unchallenged with your unconditional acceptance? Would you allow someone to kill their child because they thought it was okay?

      • I don’t have time to go through and show you everytime you make a strawman, argument from silence, or argument from ignorance.

        I will point you at particular claims you’ve made repeatedly to look through your comments and determine for yourself if you have indeed made them as I claimed.

        Review your comments and see if you make the claim that TrueChristians or theists have religion but don’t share all the same beliefs, practices, and attitudes other than the belief in magical beings…AND you claim atheists do not have religion because they do not share all the same beliefs, practices, and attitudes other than there is no gods. Simply because Christians gather together at times to share in their belief of god they have religion? I thought our Constitution allowed such a Freedom for people to gather together. Do you speak out against the Second Amendment?

        More misrepresenting my claims…arguments from silence…as to what unconditional love or acceptance means. If I did not unconditionally accept or love you, my words would be negative towards your beliefs, practices, and attitudes. Contesting is not rejecting, it is questioning. You can accept or love someone and not agree with them…consider your marriage to the husband you ardently love. Do you always agree with him? Do you still love and accept him even when you don’t agree with him or think he’s wrong?

        On not changing when you have children…it’s naive to think you won’t. It’s also one of those arguments from ignorance. Sure, your attitudes, beliefs, and practices will influence them and I question any parent who would ridicule their child that they believe in “nonsense” simply because they don’t believe in gods. You seem to feel treating your child if they believe in god like you treat myself or other “TrueChristians” as you put it would be justified…that would harm them and teach them to treat others with disrespect…The claims I made about what you teach your children comes again from my very first comment, and understanding that children want to be like their parents…if you teach them to treat people who believe in gods the way you do, often (this is not always) they will learn to treat “others” (people of different beliefs) with greater disrespect than their parents…possibly with physical violence. This IS the religion you speak out against. Like we’ve agreed upon with my first comment about what we teach our children they often learn and do.

        I’ll admit the two statements you point out those were slip ups (ie.g., nfallible and God and Jesus). Universal Truth…I like to see the evolution of this. That’s the story of the Bible and of God. That with each generation we are figuring out the heart and mind of God. And we are learning about what TrueHumanity is like…the good with the bad. This is why I doubt my beliefs, practices, and attitudes…but I can stand firm in my belief of God and Jesus. We’re part of the greatest story ever told!

        You once stated that Christians believe their god to do their bidding…this opposes what the Bible says. And it contradicts most of my comments. Christians believe they are doing the will of God…that doesn’t mean I or someone else doesn’t get it wrong at times. But that also does not mean that we never get it right.

        Yes, I believe respect is something to be given not earned. I also believe in forgiven others who have offended me or others. That does not mean they are let off the hook, they still have to answer for the harm they’ve done. But to treat them as they treat others does nothing but add fuel to the fire. To change the mindset, you have to look dramatically different than those you speak out against. You have to treat them differently than they treat others. You have to treat them the way you want to be treated. That is why I accept you Vel, that is why I respect you Vel. I don’t agree with everything you’ve said, but I’m not forcing you to agree with me. I’ve made my comments and stand by them. It is your choice to accept or reject them Vel. Either way, it’s not as you have claimed about me in any of your comments. It’s really that simple.

      • Hiliarious. You have time to post but “I don’t have time to go through and show you everytime you make a strawman, argument from silence, or argument from ignorance.”

        Yep, the usual baseless claims by a TrueChristian and of course when asked to show evidence, you cannot provide it. Congratulations, KD, you’ve done well at showing that yourself and your religion are not worth any respect at all.

        The rest I’ll address in a day or two.

      • I’m sorry Vel, but stating that I do not want to take the time to point out all the times you’ve used poor arguments is not a baseless claim. It means it is not worth the value of my time…

        As for providing evidence, I pointed you in the direction to look…you’re post and your comments. One specific argument that was used repeatedly was even mentioned…

        You can believe someone must earn your respect…and how does one do that…agree with your beliefs, practices, and attitudes? Do you believe yourself to be so much better than other people that they do not deserve your respect? If either is the case, your respect is rather worthless.

      • Oh my. Sorry, KD, but claiming you have no time to support your baseless claims, and then proceeding to take time to write other posts *does* show that you are only making excuses.

        Telling me to go look at my posts for these supposed logical fallacies is just perfect. You again try to ignore the responsibility that *you* have to support your claims and want me to do your work for you. You have made the claim, KD, so the burden of proof is yours. Making vague claims isn’t showing me the evidence. It’s rather like a prosecuting attorney saying to the judge “well, no, your honor, we have no evidence that Mr. Smith did murder someone, but please go out and look for some. I’m sure you’ll find it and that you’ll have to agree with me.”

        So, KD, I have looked and I have found none of these logical fallacies that you claim are there. You have yet to show any “specific argument” was a logical fallacy. You may have claimed it but showing it is an entirely different matter. Now, since I have not found what you claim are there in my posts, that would indicate that they aren’t there as you have promised. Or do you now wish to claim that I didn’t look in the “right” way? “Your honor, you didn’t look in the “right” places.” Why haven’t I found those logical fallacies, KD? It seems that they simply aren’t there since neither you or I can produce them. Again, you are asked to produce the evidence for your claims, KD.

        I know that someone must earn my respect because that’s how I give my respect. How does one do that, you ask? Support their claims with evidence, tell the truth, be polite, etc. It’s not hard to do at all, KD. And no, dear KD, no one must agree with my beliefs, practices and attitudes. Nice attempt again to build your little strawman atheist, but you fail again in trying to claim that I do things that I do not. I do believe that I am indeed better than some people and I know that their beliefs are not worth respect. I’m better than people who think that it’s okay to enslave people. I’m better than people who claim that others are less than human if they are not exactly like them. You see, KD, I don’t think you are less than human, I think that you are wrong in what you believe since you have failed to support your claims.

        I think you should be able to believe your nonsense as long as you bother no one else, but alas belief always comes with action. And your actions do harm people as I have given examples of in my earlier post. I will give another example that your supposed respect for those who would enslave others, for those who call others less than human also harms others. You give your respect e.g. high regard and esteem, to such horrible things, then you validate such nonsense. My respect is something that I am careful with because if I respect every bit of nonsense then that denigrates the value of my respect.

        All you seem to do, KD, is want to feel superior than everyone else with your claims of unconditional love and acceptance. You have built a god that you think does this and then claim to be trying to be just like this god. You don’t think of what that attitude actually does to other people. You seem unwilling to stand for anything or anyone. If everything is worth respect and support, then you don’t have to do anything or take a risk. Nothing is your problem or responsibility.

      • KD, I have said that TrueChristians have religion. I have said that theists have religions, and that they are the beliefs, attitudes and practices specific to their religions and the gods they claim exist. Atheists do not have religion in this context or in the context that all atheists have the same beliefs, attitudes and practices. I have asked you repeatedly to show that atheists do have these same b,a and p, and you have not. Atheists, by definition, must share one conclusion and one conclusion only, that there are no god/gods. You are also an atheist when it comes to gods you do not believe in. You do not have atheism as a religion, a set of beliefs, attitudes and practices. Neither do I.

        Yes, KD, Christians have religion since they have certain beliefs, attitudes and practices based on their belief in the existence of a divine being, just like the definition says and that you’ve been shown repeatedly. They do not have a religion *just* because they “gather at times to share in their beliefs of god”. As the prior sentence says, they share beliefs, attitudes and practices. You are trying to move the goalposts by limiting what you want to claim Christians do as part of their religion. That is not all that Christians do as part of their religion.

        Wow, mentioning the 1st Amendment! And why mention it, KD? Where have I said that Christians can’t gather together? Why is this germane to the discussion about what religion is? It seems that you are just flailing and attempting to create more strawmen arguments to address since you have failed so far to address the ones I’ve given. I am quite content that you have ignored my post about slavery and the bible.

        People can indeed gather together when they wish. We can witness that in the gatherings of the Ku Klux Klan, Democrats, Libertarians, Republicans, Communists, atheists, My Little Pony fans, etc, and those gatherings do not make them religions, nor have I claimed so. Again, KD, you have claimed I have. You need to show me where I have claimed this or again it is a baseless claim, and one that seems to be no more than part of the same old strawman arguments you have been using.

        KD, your words have been “negative” (marked by denial, prohibition, or refusal) towards my beliefs, practices and attitudes. You have said I’m wrong, and that is showing disapproval in quite a noticeable way. Unconditional love means love without conditions. Unconditional acceptance means acceptance without conditions e.g. something essential to the appearance or occurrence of something else; a restricting or modifying factor. Contesting is indeed rejecting because you have said that I am wrong. You did not say that I could be wrong, KD. You said I was wrong. You have claimed that I have “missed the point”. You have claimed that other Christians have “misused” the bible. And this is all rejection, e.g. to refuse to accept, consider, submit to, take for some purpose, or use. I can indeed love someone and accept someone while knowing that they are wrong. And if I do love them, I will not ignore my duty to help them not be wrong. I have no problem in telling my husband that he is wrong if he is. And he’s not afraid to tell me the same thing. However, if he was intent on being wrong and harming others, including lying to them, I would not love him. My love has conditions and that gives it worth. I love freedom and hate slavery. If I claimed I loved both, it would be meaningless.

        Again, your bible shows that your god has condition after condition for its love. Having conditions is not a bad thing at all. Unless you wish to claim your god is wrong. Is it?

        You make more claims with no evidence, KD. I have seen no evidence that people change when they have children. If they were loving decent people before, they still are. If they were selfish jerks before, they still are. I would cite the very sad truth that people kill their own children. If people always changed, then this would not happen. I have not made an argument from ignorance. I have plenty of evidence to support my position. Can you supply me with evidence supporting yours?

        You have yet to show me that your beliefs are not nonsense, KD. I have no more reason to respect you than to respect someone like Fred Phelps. Do you respect him, KD, the man who says that soldiers should be killed because some folks in the US have no problem with homosexuals? Is his opinion worth your respect, KD? My respect is that I would love my children enough to tell them the truth, not some lie that I wasn’t sure was even true, to make myself feel better as you have directly stated you would do. How would telling the truth to my prospective children “harm” them, KD? You have made the claim, so support it. I have no problem with teaching children to not respect people who hate Jewish people, who hate people who have a few more melanocytes in their skin than they do, etc. I think it’s the best idea to ridicule people like that because ridicule is a powerful weapon against such nonsense. Ridicule shows how pathetic ideas like that are.

        You claimed “If you teach them to criticize or condemn they will learn to do that, and likely learn to do it in a worse way than you taught them.”I asked you to show that this is “likely”. Of course, again you are unable to do show. Show me that your claim that “if you teach them to treat people who believe in gods the way you do, often (this is not always) they will learn to treat “others” (people of different beliefs) with greater disrespect than their parents…possibly with physical violence. “ More baseless claims, KD. Show me the evidence that this is true. If not, it’s essentially the slippery slope logical fallacy, where you make a claim that something will likely happen if something is done, but have not one scrap of evidence that this is the case. Here’s a description of the fallacy: http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/slippery-slope.html This is a very good site to become familiar with most, if not all, logical fallacies. This slippery slope nonsense is not “the religion you (I) speak out against”. I can show how religion has led to the problems I have discussed, real examples. You have yet to show how teaching children to not “unconditionally love and accept” ideas will “if you teach them to treat people who believe in gods the way you do, often (this is not always) they will learn to treat “others” (people of different beliefs) with greater disrespect than their parents…possibly with physical violence.”

        You have also made a claim that children “want to be like their parents”. This again is not an “always” thing as you present it. In some things, yes, I did want to be like my parents. In some things, I very much did not.

        You seem to be claiming that the story of the Bible and of god is a “universal truth”. I may be misreading this “Universal Truth…I like to see the evolution of this. That’s the story of the Bible and of God.” But you cannot demonstrate this to be the case, nor have any TrueChristians before you and there is no reason to think that any TrueChristians after you will fare any better. Each generation claims to know the heart and mind of this god and have failed to show so. You have no evidence of God or Jesus, no more than any other theist of any other type can show. You can indeed claim that you “can stand firm in my belief of God and Jesus”, but so can everyone else make the same claim. This is why atheists like myself, who have concluded that there are *no* gods, just shake our heads at the lot of you. You are sure that your version is the only right one, just like you are sure that there is a god just like in the bible and there is a magical part of this god that sacrificed itself for you; and you are sure that everyone else is wrong.

        We indeed are finding out more about humanity. We have gone from superstitious nonsense like your religion/beliefs/attitudes/practices based on such superstitious beliefs, to the scientific method and debunking much of those beliefs. We don’t have nearly as many wars based on whose imaginary friend is the best or which version is the right one. We still have a long way to go to where such baseless beliefs stop causing harm.

        Again, there is no reason to think that you or I are part of any “greatest story ever told”. A Muslim can make the same claim. And I shrug my shoulders and point out that neither of you can show that your beliefs aren’t just myths.
        Many Christians, if not all, do believe that their god does their bidding. They pray for many things and claim that their god hears them and does what they ask aka “I prayed for a miracle and God heard me.” This does not oppose what the bible says. Just like my post citing bible verses about slavery, I can do the same thing showing your claims about what it says about interaction with its god. You can create a version that says one thing, I can do another. You claim only your interpretation is the right one. You cannot demonstrate that this is true. You simply wish that it is. You have yet to show that you are “getting it right” at all, any of you. So, yes, it does mean that you never get it right. You each disagree on what “right” is.

        Matthew 6-7 are the classic bits about prayer. It has people asking for things and god coming through for them. It says you can ask for anything and it will happen quickly, Matt 17 has the mountain moving as soon as you ask.

        Now, I can see that it does say that God knows what you need before you ask, in chap 6. This would put the claim that there is free will at odds with the idea of predestination. Many Christians like the free will idea; some don’t, notably the Calvinists. Chap 7 has that one can ask this god for anything, and that the answer will be positive, in that a father would not give something not wanted in place of what was wanted. The other common excuse is that one must ask for things in accordance to this god’s will. This makes asking for anything a worthless exercise.

        I believe in forgiving others, and that implies that you and I believe that they have done wrong and they have accepted that also. I also believe in letting go of anger because that only harms me, not them. No one will be punished unless humans punish them. There is no magical punishement that you can rely on, and hope will happen. I am always amused at TrueChristians who want to claim that they are so forgiving but who worship a vengeful god that is ludicrous in its over-reaction and they delight in its supposed acts of punishment. You claim to want to change the world. Your bible says you can’t, that your god must have its fill of blood and revenge. It’s so bad that after your god supposedly kills everyone that denies it and allows itself/son to rule for an “eon”, it intentionally allows its supposed arch-enemy to corrupt more people so it gets even more blood.

        I do not treat the slavers, the bigots, those that would sacrifice their children on the altar of their faith as they treat others. That is a sad lie, and only one more from you. I stand against them and show them as they are, defending those who can’t defend themselves from such things. Changing the mindset is a noble thing, but do you think that sitting and doing nothing would have stopped the genocide of the Jews? If Christians back in the 40’s would have just prayed harder, the ovens in Auschwitz would have gone out? Well, considering the anti-semitism from TrueChristians then and now, it seems that again we have Christians not sure what their god “really” wants.

        You don’t accept me, KD. If you did, you would have never said I was wrong. That’s what acceptance means. You have done your best to change my mind and if you accepted *me* that would never cross your mind. You have said that you would tell me something was true even if you doubted it yourself. That doesn’t accept me and that certainly doesn’t respect me. Respect means you think my ideas as just as good as yours. And you don’t. You have tried your best to force me to agree with you by trying to pretend I am the strawman you have created. Your respect is not worth much since you’d evidently give it to a Klansman or a Nazi. I don’t want that kind of “respect”.

        I know you’ve made your comments and stand by them. You’ve also not given me the evidence I have asked for. And thus, your comments are just as valid as every other theists.

      • Sorry, 1st Amendment not 2nd, I must be off my meds? J/K, I don’t take meds…they’re from the devil.

        But seriously…

        How unAmerican am I, mixing up the 1st and 2nd Amendments?

      • Pretty average American since most don’t know the Constitution or its amendments. I knew what you meant with no problem.

        I’m sorry, I don’t find “jokes” about mental illness funny. Those “meds” are all that keep some people sane and alive. They are very effective.

      • I have also been rethinking the “unconditional” love and acceptance. I’m fairly certain that my claim did not state the term “unconditional” but was stated that God loves and accepts everyone, but not every accepts God.

        Shame on you for taking this to mean “unconditional” and shame on me for not catching this sooner and utilizing the term in follow up arguments.

        My claim was not an unconditional love or acceptance. The love and acceptance I believe God to have is like a parents love for a child…or also that expressed between married couples. And unlike you claim…even though I’m sure you have scripture that you will use to claim otherwise (do you do all your own research or do you utilize the works of other atheists to aid you in your beliefs and arguments, but since atheists don’t have a religion or religious since you don’t share the same beliefs of those other atheists, I hope you haven’t used one of those websites that provide arguments and scriptures against theists?) God does fit the definition of 1 Corinthians 13…

        So, I will restate that the use of the term “unconditional” was not a part of my original claim. However, if I did in fact use the term, I apologize as it was poor word choice in making my claim.

      • “The reason I contest them, is not to prove I am right or you are wrong, because I understand that I could be wrong and you could be right. This is how I view unconditional acceptance.”

        “If I spread a message of unconditional love and acceptance, how is this wrong or bad?”

        Unconditional means without conditions e.g. “I love you without conditions. *Nothing* would make me cease loving you.” I’m sorry if you didn’t mean that, but that’s what the word means and TrueChristians use it all of the time. You have claimed that you are spreading a message of unconditional love and acceptance. IF you are spreading a message, this indicates that you think everyone should follow the ideal of unconditional love and acceptance. I’ve gone through this exact discussion before, having to point out how untenable the claim of unconditional love is and having the TrueChristians backing away from their claims of “unconditional love” from their god and from them.

        Parental love is not unconditional. Parental love is ideally not saying “Love me or else.” which is exactly what your god demands. If you do not love this god, you have at best death to look forward to or at worst an eternity of torture. This fate depends on the TrueChristian and what they have decided their god “really” meant.

        And more questions intimating that I am less than honest. Yay! No, KD, I do my own research since I’ve found others to be wrong. And have told them they are wrong. Yes, gasp, I know, an atheist telling other atheists that they are mistaken. Another blow to your claims that atheism is a religon. For instance some atheists take great delight in the verse from Ezekiel that has been translated (by TrueChistians) as God being against pillows sewn to armholes. Yep, makes no sense. But I think this is a poor translation (the infamous KJV) and it does make much more sense from translators who had better resources.

        God does not fit the definition of love in 1 Corinthians. Let’s take a look at what the verses say:

        4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.”

        Love is patient – Uzzah was killed instantly for touching the “ark”. The Israelites complained and god took a fit and killed a bunch of them (and god was surprised that they complained). And patient for an eternal being, what does that mean, eh?

        Love is kind e.g. of a sympathetic or helpful nature – the flood, where animals who didn’t do anything wrong were drowned. Damning every human for the supposed actions of 2. We do have that this god won’t damn children for the actions of their parents and then again, we do have that this god will do exactly that. We also have this god not so kind to men who get their genitalia damaged, he forbids them to be in the “assembly of the lord”. Deut 23.

        Love doesn’t envy – “You shall have no other gods before me.” also seems that this god is sure that there are others like it.

        Love doesn’t boast – the entire bloviated bragging in Job to a man who supposedly knows all about this god and is a faithful servant.

        Love is not proud – again Job. How dare you doubt me, I’m just the greatest.

        Love does not dishonor others – Mary was in deep trouble because of your god’s supposed actions, until Joseph married her. You’d think this god would remember what it said to do to women who were pregnant out of wedlock.

        love is not self-seeking – again Job. Also see the Pharaoh, who god used to only show off. Exodus 10.

        love is not easily angered – see again Uzzah, and David’s son, where the child is killed for the sins of the father.

        love keeps no record of wrongs – see “book of life” in Revelation.

        Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. – “11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.” 2 thessalonians. And in Revelation “He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.” “When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle.”

        Love always protects – see Revel 20 where God intentionally lets Satan out to go after everyone who believes in him. Oh and Uzzah and David’s son again. And Adam and Eve, this god either intentionally allowed the “snake” in or didn’t notice it.

        Love always trusts – destroys tower of babel because he was sure they were coming to get him.

        love always hopes – how does this work with a omnipotent/omniscient being?

        love always perseveres – this god has changed its mind at least three times on what it really wants humans to do, and millions more since TrueChristians can’t agree on what it really wants and what it will really do.

        Love never fails – this god has failed since it has taken the above three times to get down what it really wanted to do so people are “saved”. Also failed to either keep snake out of garden. Also fails in prophecy since this JC said he’d be back before the last of his audience died. Being there is no evidence of really old people around, there is no reason to think this prophecy worked. Other prophecies fail to, requiring a “second coming” to excuse all of the failed prophecies of the jewish messiah, like how *all* world leaders would respect him, etc.

      • I find it curious the claim that God has failed?

        That could have been an interesting conversation. But as you continually prove my claims about you I find having that conversation pointless. As for evidence of my claim, again your comments and post ARE the evidence. I simply didn’t want to go through, point them out, and explain why they are too you…because you would simply have another poor rebuttal.

        You also apparently ignored my comment that I never claimed unconditional love or acceptance until you referred to my comment as such…and I really can’t believe you actually went into your argument that God does not meet 1 Corinthians definition of love? I guess you’re out to prove your point regardless of reason?

        All I leave you with with is be mindful of what you teach. What you say about others reveals more about you than it does about who you “speak out” against. It reveals your beliefs, attitudes, and practices.

        So long, farewell, Club Gloating!

      • If a supposedly omniscient/omnipotent being has to take several tries at deciding on what would work to “save” people, this indicates that it is not omnipotent/omniscient. Thus the one of the main claims of the bible is shown to be untrue. Consider the story your bible tells. We have this god who allows a evil being, or a snake that can evidently walk, get into its “paradise” or doesn’t known that it got in to chat at its prize possessions. This god declares that since the humans listened to the evil being/talking snake, they need redemption because they became far too close to being like this god and the others it is apparently talking to.

        Christians claim that this redemption is by the character Jesus Christ and call it “original sin”. Jews don’t have this as far as I know. We have this being allowing humans to breed and increase over the earth. If one is to believe the bible, this would require incest, something that modern society doesn’t like very much. This god ignores humanity for some unknown amount of time and then gets offended that its progeny is breeding with humans and that humans don’t pay it enough attention, even though it’s evidently not been around. It decides that one family will survive a genocide of every living thing on the planet, humans, animals and plants.

        This family, aka Noah’s group, gets animals onto a boat that cannot be seaworthy as described. All sorts of entertaining excuses are given on how marsupials get to the middle east and how the Egyptians seems to have not noticed a flood that covers *mountains*. The flood proceeds, and supposedly the ark runs aground.Then we have Noah promptly getting drunk and then being seen “naked” by his one son (this is sometimes thought to mean that Mrs. Noah cuckholded Noah with his son). Noah, then curses a grandson for this, the curse of Ham, one of the major excuses on why those people who have darker skin are to be slaves. What a “first” family. God offers a covenant that he won’t do something like this again.

        Then we go for a undetermined amount of time (very few things in the bible can be dated). We have the tower of Babel, which this god is afraid of humans building a tower to “heaven”. We have the claims of the Exodus, which the Egyptians were evidently unaware of millions of Israelites living among them as slaves. They didn’t notice the plagues either. The Israelites supposedly leave after a series of plagues that kill all of the first born creatures in Egypt. Their god supposedly also kills all of the Egyptian army. Not one of the kingdoms that contest with Egypt notice that they lost their army.

        This god supposedly gives a very long list of commandments directly to the Israelites with Moses as his secretary. Exodus and Leviticus are direct commands from this god. Christians usually only want to give lip service to the first 10. This is supposed to keep them on the straight and narrow. And it fails. So much for a omnipotent and omniscient god giving laws that will work.

        We then get the claims of the grand kingdoms of Solomon, the supposed wisest man in the world, and David. We have nothing to show that any of these claims are true, no tons of gold, silver and precious woods and gems that built the supposed temple and palaces that held hundreds of concubines. We also have this god killing David’s son for David’s sins. Not one bit of archaeological evidence despite at least a thousand years of looking.

        We have the Babylonian captivity which is one of the few things in the bible that has even a little historical evidence. \\

        Then we get the claims of the New Testament, where we have a claimant to the position of Jewish Messiah, prophesied in the OT. Now, we have the story that rather than a human leader, this god split itself into a piece that would have to die a tortuous death to appease the other part of itself in the matter of original sin. Rather than a covenant or laws, suddenly we need a blood sacrifice. Then we have the gospels which have some very interesting differences. In some, we have a very human Jesus, weeping in Gesthemane. And in John we have no weeping, we have a JC who has no trouble with this nonsense. We also have other problems but that’s been covered in this blog, and many others before.

        So, yes, I see this god of yours as a failure, and an imaginary failure at that.

        You have yet to show that I have done any of the logical fallacies that you have claimed I have. For someone with no time to show these fallacies, you post a lot avoiding the issue. I have shown that you did indeed claim unconditional love and acceptance. Like so many of your fellow TrueChristians, you forget that this is a recording medium, KD. I can search every comment on this site for keywords and have shown that you made the claims you now insist that you never made.

        And golly, you can’t believe that I actually showed that your god fails at being the “love” 1 Corinthians describes. I’m sure you can’t believe that someone would show you in error. Please do show how I am “regardless of reason”, KD. Show me how I’m wrong. I have no problem with that at all. But it seems you cannot. You can onlhy sputter in indignation and not actually address the argument.

        All you have left me with is another great example of how TrueChristians make claims and cannot support them. I am indeed mindful of what I teach. I consider each word carefully. I do not need to run back to claim that I didn’t “really meant” things that I have written. I certainly hope that my writing is indicative of who I am. I am indeed happy with what I write, KD. And again with the claims of “beliefs, attitudes and practices.” You have yet to show that all atheists have the same ones, KD. You started with that baseless claim and days afterward, we still have nothing to support your false claim. Congratulations.

        Aw, and one more attempt at an insult. “Club Gloating”. Really? That’s what you came up with? :)

      • Hurrah!

        ” I simply didn’t want to go through, point them out, and explain why they are too you…because you would simply have another poor rebuttal.”

        Of course, KD. Of course. :) Everyone is so proud of you.

      • Club Gloating, not an insult, but how Google Translate’s you blog title…

        Just found this article about an atheist turned theist…

        http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2013/november/fox-news-highly-reluctant-jesus-follower-kirsten-powers.html?paging=off

        She said the question she was asked while she was an atheist was to have an open-mind? Do you have an open-mind?

        I know you won’t click the link because you’ve demonstrated a closed-minded belief set…You’d actually have to have an open-mind to read the article. And even did you read the article, you’d be closed-minded about her change in beliefs…you’d write it off as non-sense and have a list of excuses and reasons why she’s wrong. You’d believe the knowledge and understanding you possess is far greater than any who opposes what you believe to be true. So very naive Vel. You understand that being closed-minded is a self-defense mechanism? It’s a barrier we put up to “protect” ourselves from getting hurt. Somehow I take it that “religion” hurt you…maybe from chastising you for believing something different than the “herd?” Or perhaps as you admitted, you felt betrayed when God didn’t prove himself like you asked when you felt you needed him?

        Whatever reasons it was, coupled with finding community amongst atheists, you have closed your mind off.

        Referring to all religions as “wrong, nonsense, cults, etc.” Is no different than what Westboro Baptist or Pat Robertson says against homosexuals. You won’t believe me, but it’s the same closed minded belief of absolute certainty that what you say and believe is right. Any defense, any argument, is disregarding reality. You are like the “religions” you speak out against.

        If you don’t believe me, ask a non-biased 3rd party to review our conversation to determine if there is any merit to my claims against you.

      • KD, you are certain batting a thousand on trying to redefine words. Keep going! Soon, we’ll have newspeak.

        Wow, an atheist who turned a theist. Yep, this happens all of the time. We also have theists becoming atheists, Protestants becoming Catholics, Christians becoming Jews, Christians becoming Wicca and Wicca becoming Christians, Muslims become Buddhists, etc. So? We see that humans change their minds.

        Wow, and I did click the link. So you have again lied about me, KD. You have born false witness against another again intentionally. For all Christians claim that atheists view their god as a “vending machine” for prayer and forgiveness, your actions seem to indicate that you definitely do if you have to ask for forgiveness every time you intentionally ignore your god’s laws. Of course, you have to cover yourself and make up excuses if I did indeed click the link.

        One more question from you but poor KD, you can’t answer mine. Yes, KD, I do have an open mind. This does not mean that I believe anything anyone tells me. Let’s look at your atheist turned theist. She was raised Christian. She claims her faith was “flimsy and superficial” but she did believe. Now, would she have claimed that back then? Might have, might not. But boy, it makes such a great story now from a Fox News personality. It seems that Kirsten isn’t quite sure what she wants to call herself. She attends a Presbyterian church (Calvinist) but also calls herself an “orthodox Christian” which seems not to mean orthodox Christian like it does for thousands of them. It seems that’s she’s invented this term to avoid the term evangelical since prior Christians have loaded it with “baggage”.

        Then we have in her story that she was a close minded jerk and so was her Christian boyfriend. Oh, they can’t love each other unless the other did the same as they did. Unsuprisingly, Kirsten does not tell us what evidence is on the side of Christianity and what won her over. She also alludes that her boyfriends prayers made a change. Now, since I have had hundreds of people who have made the same prayers for me, why no change here? Is it that they didn’t pray? That they prayed in the “wrong” way? That your god likes me as I am? or is it that there is no causation or correlation to prayer and reality and there is no god?

        Oh and Kirsten had a dream about Jesus! Well, who could doubt that? :) People have had dreams about other gods and they converted. People have feelings of divine presence, of awe, of wonder and attribute them to gods. Does this make their religion just as true as yours? And yes, I would like answers to these questions but you have shown unwilling to answer my questions when they dare question your nonsense. It’s always nice to see someone like Kirsten show how special she is by claiming Jesus visited her personally. Now, here I am, having prayed mightily for help in keeping my faith when I was a Christian and doubting all those years ago. I got nothing and have still gotten nothing for the decades I have been still searching. Why is one doubting Thomas better than another, KD? Now the common True
        Christian response is that I am not “sincere” enough in my searching, that I am not praying or asking in the “right” way. Then I ask what is the right way. The TC gives me his magical formula and that fails. I ask how they know I am not sincere enough, and point out that the only evidence is that I don’t get the result they promise will come. This could also mean that they are wrong.

        Andn golly, she came back to Christianity, the religion she was taught by people who she trusted. She didn’t become a Muslim or a Wicca, or a animist from the wilds of Borneo. It has been my personal observation that people often return to their former religion when they realize their mortality. It’s sad, and a poor version of Pascal’s Wager. It’s like you all think that if you fake it you can make it. Is your god so easily fooled? It surely seems you think so.

        No, KD, I have not “closed my mind off”. That is one more lie you have told yourself to convince yourself that if I had an open mind I would simply *have* to agree with you. My mind is very open, but again, I don’t believe what people tell me just because I want to believe it’s true. You, and numerous other TrueChristians, have failed to show me any evidence that any of your versions of Christianity are true. I can show that some Christians are anti-intellectual bigots. I’m sorry if Kirsten was so shallow to think that generalizations work so clumsily to think that *all* theists are twits.

        Compartmentalization is a wonderful thing for many people, it allows people to segregate what they want to believe from the skeptical rigor of everything else in their lives. I have friends who are atheists but who believe in astrology, homeopathy, reiki, etc. They want to believe in things that don’t have any evidence to support them, just like you want to believe that you have an imaginary friend that loves you and cares for you and will make you a happy little home after you are dead.

        I have been searching for evidence for years, KD. And I haven’t stopped. I could always be wrong. But there is nothing to show that you, or any other theist, is right. You, and Kirsten, have not shown me that your understanding or evidence is any superior to mine. You have made baseless claims, refused to answer questions, etc. I know Christians can be honest, decent people. You have demonstrated that that this is not always the case.

        This is such a standard response from a TrueChristian “Somehow I take it that “religion” hurt you…maybe from chastising you for believing something different than the “herd?” Or perhaps as you admitted, you felt betrayed when God didn’t prove himself like you asked when you felt you needed him?”

        Oh yes, here’s the false claims that atheists are only atheists because they were rebels. Nope, fail on that one too, KD. I became an atheist because I started to question the claims of Christianity and found that the claims had nothing to support them, no more than any other religion. I did not “feel beytrayed”, as you again mistakenly claim. I was not overly surprised that this god didn’t answer, so no “betrayal” was to be had. It’s like knowing that Santa probably doesn’t really exist and not being particularly annoyed when you don’t find reindeer hoofprints on the roof. And it’s quite amusing that you want to claim that I closed my mind off when finding a community of atheists. Sorry, again, fail. Nope, I happily argue with atheists too. And my mind is still quite open, it just doesn’t blindly accept anything that walks by like a $5 prostitute.

        I do not only refer to all religions as wrong, nonsense, cults, I also show just how they are such things. Now, show me where Fred Phelps, Pat Robertson etc, can support what they say about homosexuals. Again, KD, you try to make comparisons and fail. I won’t and don’t believe your claims since you again cannot support them. Being close minded is saying something is true with no evidence. Please do show me where I’ve done that. Oh yes, you can’t, can you? Just like you cannot show me where I’ve made logical fallacies because you are “too busy” but of course can continue to write posts about anything but those things I ask you to support.

        Please also show me a third party that supports your claim, KD. I’m waiting.

        Addendum = You seem to have an animus towards me and that seems to have started when I dared question your version of your religion, one that you see as harmless. I may be wrong, but this seems similar to the actions of a number of theists who want the validation of atheists, that at least *their* faith/religion is okay even the eyes of the harshest skeptics. After all, who could be adverse to spreading “unconditional love and acceptance”?

        To remove that source of animus, you might be interested in reading some other atheists’ thoughts rather than my own. These present some familiar atheist arguments very much based in classical logical thinking, much better than I could ever do.
        http://adversusapologetica.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/griffin-beak-mermaid-fin-and-dragon-blood-soup/
        He also does a good exploration of a popular bit of apologetics:
        http://adversusapologetica.wordpress.com/2012/10/14/ten-reasons-to-reject-the-apologetic-1042-source-slogan/

        If you want to be a successful (or I perhaps should say an apologist that doesn’t appear that he’s never considered a single atheist argument) apologist, and not just one more preacher to the choir as many are, I suggest that you read what refutations have been written about your religion. You may have done so already, but your posts do not reflect that in my opinion. You will find that those who refute religious nonsense often do their research very well. For instance, we have Richard Carrier’s essay on the claims about Thallus’ supposed mention of the sun darkening, http://www.jgrchj.net/volume8/JGRChJ8-8_Carrier.pdf , which shows astronomical and textual information that shows that TrueChristian apologist claims are very unlikely to be true.

      • Regarding your addendum, I’m not looking for your approval of “my religion” but rather attempting to bring to light that your claims that atheism is not a religion, or in the least that atheists are “not religious” in their beliefs, or that atheism does less harm to humanity than theist religions happens to be questionable in the least. Again, look back at the very first comment I made…consider the word values a substitute for beliefs, practices, attitudes; way of life; perhaps even “religion.”

        Another interesting article you may want to check out…Atheist mega churches? http://abcnews.go.com/m/story?id=20845796&ref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F

        As for apologetics and theology, not about who’s right or wrong but about what the person believes, why they believe it, and being able to rationally defend their beliefs. I find atheists are the ones who “demand proof or evidence” beyond that which any theist provides. This demand based off the belief that the “burden of proof” is on the person making the claim or “the positive claim” is a lie many atheist believe. It allows them to have the false feeling of superiority and the premise that they are right without “feeling the burden” of their beliefs, practices, or attitudes.

        There is a new movie coming out soon, I think in March “God’s Not Dead” it looks pretty interesting. Have a good Monday!

      • the longest exit scene so far on this blog….

        You have yet to show that atheism is a religion, using the definition of religion used by me in the blog post you are so desperate to show wrong. You have resorted to use a different definition of religion, the broad one that is based on the original to describe someone’s intense devotion to something mundane.

        You have failed to show that all atheists feel the same about their beliefs, so your lies about how all atheists are “religious” are nonsense.

        You have not shown that atheism harms humanity or that religion does not cause harm to humanity.

        Hilarious article. You are desperate aren’t you? One would think you’d learn from the last time you posted an “interesting article” that they aren’t so interesting and that they don’t support your nonsense. Wow, atheists are soo impressed that the guys, two comedians, who are trying to get this going have raised a whole $50K out of a needed $800,000. Golly, “hundreds” of atheists gathering and doing…..what? Oh yes, chatting since they like to meet other atheists,listening to speakers, etc. This has been going on for years, KD. They are called conventions and the FFRF, etc have been having them and hundreds of atheists gather. So again, we have you claiming that people who like the same things mean they are religious and that means that My Little Pony fans are religious, Star Trek fans are religious etc. Of course, this is again under the broad definition of religious and not what I was originally talking about at all. Woo hoo, moving the goalposts is fun!

        Now, we can look at the website of this silliness and see what they are: http://sundayassembly.com/ Yep, people gathering together and that makes them a “church” and a “religion” per KD. Your desperation to claim that other people are just like you to excuse yourself is wonderful. However, that makes your religion no more true than insisting that Polamalu is the second coming.

        It’s hilarious that again you insist that you can change defintions. Apologetics is defined as “a branch of theology devoted to the defense of the divine origin and authority of Christianity” So, you are wrong again and again hoping no one actually questions your claims. If something needs defended, you are sure it is right and someone else’s version is wrong. You believe you are right and what others believe is wrong. Christians disagree on what is the “right” way to worship, disagree on what your god really wants, and what it really means and you use apologetics to claim that each of you are right. You all defend your particular nonsense as do all religions. You do not believe each other and want proof/evidence to believe.

        Atheists do indeed demand proof/evidence beyond what ahty theists provides since theists provide none. They claim that they have evidence but the evidence they have is the same from Christian to Christian, from Muslim to Jew to Wicca, etc. You all claim that one needs only to look at the universe to “know” that your particular religion is the only true one. You claim evidence for the particular events in your religion but cannot provide them. Your holy books are full of nonsense and contradiction. The burden of proof *is* on the person making the claim and it is not a lie, poor KD. That is accepted in legal courts, debates and discussions. You accept it too, KD, but only when convenient. You, like so many Christians, want to ignore things when it shows your belief in imaginary beings to be ridiculous. It is only TrueChristians who can’t provide evidence that wish to falsely claim that the burden of proof is on the claimant of something being true. A good example of burden of proof is described by Carl Sagan when he discusses the dragon in his garage (http://www.godlessgeeks.com/LINKS/Dragon.htm) As you can see, it is up to Sagan to give evidence for this dragon e.g. an unusual claim, just like your claim of supernatural gods.

        And the film “God’s Not Dead”. Yep, from the book of the same name. Now, KD, do you known the supposedly great arguments this book uses? Let’s see: the bible is historically accurate. Alas, no. It is not and no evidence for its claims have been found. The best that the author can do is claim that Bart Ehrman says that there could have been an intinerant rabbi, but that does not say that there is any evidence for Jesus Christ, son of God existed. He uses Strobel’s nonsense, which fails since there is no evidence of eyewitness testimony, no evidence of an empty tomb, any evidence of magic, etc. His “evidence” is that there was a church, which means that any church is evidence that the gods worshipped are just as real as yours. So, KD, are Isis, Zeus, Odin, etc just as real as your god? yes or no? Or will you refuse to answer again? The author claims that his god affected the world. Hmmm, every religion has claimed that. Islam must be true since it’s on the rise per that “logic”. He also claims that the fact atheists become theists must mean his god is real. Well, Christians become Muslims so that means that Mohammed simply must be more true than Jesus. Hopefully, you see how ridiculous this nonsense is. Again, this book/movie is great, for showing that apologetics is for defending the claims of some theists, just like the definition says. All the movie is appears to be another regurgitation of the glurge story of how a student confounds his evil professor (who per the movie write up ” demands that all of his students must sign a declaration that “God is dead” in order to get a passing grade”0. Funny how this is never shown to be actually true, but only wishful thinking by theists who find that lies are all they have to “support” their myths. Why, this movie is just as “good” as the Left Behind nonsense. It’s a wonder that good ol’ Curt Cameron isn’t in this.

        I’m glad you find such a movie “pretty interesting”. That tells me a lot about you, KD. It goes along with your claim that you would lie to others to try to get them to believe like you do. That movie sure does support that attitude.

      • Oh I see it has to be under your definition? That a religion is only if the person believes in a supernatural being or if “all” share identical beliefs practices or attitudes…which even you admit that not all theists or TrueChristians do?

        And your definition of religion is inerrant? No question about it? Once again The Boss cannot be questioned…seems your blog displays your beliefs practices and attitudes towards the religion you speak out against? Hmm…setting up your blog to pretend you are god??? I’ll take that to mean you are mocking religion or the belief in gods (which is a growing trend among atheists, this refers back to my seeking the herds approval comments), rather than you having a god complex…but who knows? And be careful your religious undertones on your mockery might display more about you than you are aware of?

        You have yet to show me that I am religious or share all the same beliefs as all TrueChristians…your little straw man arguments don’t reflect my beliefs in the least. Like I said, those are your beliefs projected on to my comments and posts…you have failed!

        When you speak out, call it what it is…your speaking out against belief in god. Against theists. Don’t use the term “religion” because of the deep emotional and mental connection people have made…like you said religion has a foul odor to it. Your ad hominem arguments against religion and belief in god are poor attempts to support your position. Like I said you behave with the same mindset as the “religions” you speak out against. Whether intentional or unintentional it displays the same mindset.

        One thing I would ask you to consider is why you have taken my comments so personally and offensive. Back to the hurt or abandonment you felt? I know you don’t like to take about it…you became very defensive when I tried to draw more about your experience with “religion” and “god” out. But you could still process through the offense rather than hiding behind a false front like you are doing?

        Burden of proof…accepted by courts, etc. Appeal to authority? In courts both make positive claims guilt or innocence…both sides have the burden of proof. One has the burden to prove guilt the other has the burden to prove innocence. This is to prove beyond a reasonable doubt amongst a jury of peers. That’s why I recommended a 3rd party to review the merits of our discussion…

      • Yes, KD, if you are going to claim that I am wrong in a post, you are stuck with showing how I am wrong using the same definition of the words I use. If you don’t, it’s just you trying to create a strawman argument. It’s always amusing to see TrueChristians complain that non-Christians do not take their bible in context and then proceed to do exactly that to my post. You have attempted to change the context of my post by trying to change the definition of religion in order to try to claim that atheism is a religion and that atheists are religious.

        In my original post, I am talking about religion as the attitudes beliefs and practices based on the worship/belief of a supernatural being. Christianity is a religion. Judaism is a religion. They share beliefs in the same god and claim to live in accordance to this god. Theists believe in magical beings, they do things based on those beliefs.

        I have indeed said that not all theists or TrueChistians share identical beliefs and practices. It is those groups that make the claim that they do so, even when it is very easy to demonstrate that they do not. Here’s a question directly to you to show my point: KD, approximately how many Christians are there in the world? Please answer this.

        Now, we have atheists who share one conclusion, that there is no god/gods. You have yet to show that we share anything else, attitudes, beliefs or practices based on the conclusion that there are no gods. Your argument is that atheists believe in the same things, from morality to how religions fail and that is not borne out by reality. I again ask you to support your claim that atheists do what you claim.

        My definition of religion is indeed inerrant. It is one of the commonly accepted definitions of the word and the one that I intended to use in my original blog post. The definition of religion that you have tried to use in place of that definition is also inerrant in that it is also a commonly accepted definition of the word. Words have definitions and they can vary. One must figure out what definition is intended by context and you have done all you can to ignore that context to advance your strawman argument.

        Please do keep making false claims about me, KD. I’m quite happy to have you demonstrate the pointlessness of your religion. I can be questioned and happy to be so. It is you who make false claims that I cannot be questioned. I also love to see you now claiming this: “setting up your blog to pretend you are god???” No, KD, I’m not, but nice attempt again to make more baseless claims. It’s always sweet to see you try to make false claims against me and then try to disguise such nonsense by saying that you don’t “really” believe in what you just said.

        I have no problem in ridiculing the belief in god/gods, because those beliefs cause harm, exactly what I said in my original blog post. I’ve been doing that for quite a long time all on my own. And ah, more desperate claims that atheism is a religion, because some atheists ridicule religion. Why yes, they do and some also don’t and don’t see a point in doing so. So again, your attempts at claiming that atheists all do something fails. Sigh.

        And please do tell me what “religious undertones” are in my “mockery”, KD. Show me this mysterious nonsense that I am somehow not aware of. This seems to be more shit thrown at a wall in hopes that something will stick, KD. More vague claims and of course not one bit of evidence. You are pleasantly consistent.

        I have shown that you are religious, KD and that you are one more TrueChristian. But please do keep denying your religion, KD. Three times is the charm, right? But let’s do this again just to show you wrong again. I have been using the definition of religion “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious(relating to or manifesting faithful devotion to an acknowledged ultimate reality or deity) attitudes, beliefs, and practices”. Now, let’s look at your own words about your religion, all quotes found here http://thebussstop.wordpress.com/ Using the search function can bring them all up.

        “It takes time and effort to understand the Bible. I see a lot of people who misuse the Bible as a source to preach their message of intolerance (i.e., religion).”

        “We must have our perspective uprooted and thrown away allowing God to plant His perspective in our hearts and minds. This is the journey I am on, learning how to trust God in planting His will and desires in me.”

        “This is a very sad and unbiblical mindset, as a Christian we should think ourselves as lower than others, we are after all on our hands in knees towards God.”

        “God want’s all people to know Him and to treat everyone we meet with the respect they deserve.”

        “Pray for the World. That followers of Jesus will be encouraged as they do the Lord’s work. That as they serve in the name of Jesus: that the blind will see, the deaf will hear, the sick will be heal, and the dead will rise.
        Pray for fellowship and unity among believers.
        Pray for those who don’t know Jesus, that God will reveal His heart and love for them.”

        So, these aren’t Christian beliefs, KD? And they aren’t religious: “a personal set or institutionalized system of religious(relating to or manifesting faithful devotion to an acknowledged ultimate reality or deity) attitudes, beliefs, and practices”? You can deny it all you want. It doesn’t change reality.

        I am speaking out against the harmful beliefs of theists. Those beliefs are always followed by actions. I speak out against their religion. I will use the term religion because it means exactly what it does, as I have shown repeatedly. Religion does have a foul odor to it thanks to what it does and what people do when having a religion. You have a religion, KD. You are stuck with it. It is your actions and the actions of those like you who have caused such deep emotional and mental connections. You want to run away from the term now, and wish to ignore your responsibility.
        Hah! Oh, now you claim that I am using ad hominem arguments. Okay, KD, show me those ad hominem arguments. Or is this one more time that you make an accusation and can’t support it? And again, you make false claims unsupported by any evidence that I behave with any “same mindset” as the religions I speak of. It’s nice to say “but but so do you” when making an argument, but you need to support that claim with actual instances of me doing something you accuse me of.

        KD, I have not taken your comments “so personally and offensive” whatever that might actually mean. You again create a strawman to address and ignore the real Vel. You again make false claims that I have felt hurt and abandoned. You make claims that I “became very defensive” when you supposedly tried to draw more about my experience with “”religion and “god””. Where is this defensiveness, KD? Show it to me. I have told you everything about my experiences with religion and god. It seems that you feel you must again create a strawman atheist since I do not fit your assumptions. For you, all atheists can’t come to the conclusion that there are no god/gods just by looking at the evidence and lack thereof. We must be damaged in some way and can’t “really” disbelieve in your god.

        Please also show me where I have a “false front”. Or is this more wishful thinking, KD?

        Your last paragraph makes no sense, KD. Let me see if I can figure it out. The burden of proof is upon the one making the claim that something happened. In a criminal court case, it is the prosecution’s burden since they must support the claim that the defendant did something worthy of punishment. In a civil court case, the claimant must show evidence that they have suffered some harm.

        I’m guessing your spluttering about “appeal to authority” is you trying to claim that I have used a logical fallacy. Please show how, KD. Show how mentioning how burden of proof is handled in various situations is an appeal to authority. And please do bring in a 3rd party to show how “great” your nonsense is. I’m waiting.

      • Oh, now your doing a better job at specifying what you are speaking out against…religions that are based off of the belief in a supernatural being. You stated all religions. It is not out of context to bring the broad definition of the word into the conversation.

        By your narrow definition of the word you are right, atheists do not believe in any supernatural beings or gods.

        But like you stated my broad definition of the word is also right. My point was never “all atheists” share the same beliefs, practices, or attitudes. Even you define it as a personal set…meaning an individual. So my broad definition of religion and religious does not require belief in the supernatural. So yes, a Pirates fan such as yourself could be considered a “religious” fan of the Pirates if the evidence supports your commitment and dedication to such a team. Or you might be a religious Star Trek follower. We typically do not refer to Trekkies as religious but many if them are!

        My comments may reflect commonly held beliefs found in Christianity. Of which you seem to claim my beliefs cause harm? Can you demonstrate this?

        That every person should be treated with the respect the deserve…you don’t agree with that?

        That we should teach tolerance rather than intolerance?

        That we should love and serve others needs?

        You don’t want to see people healed?

        You don’t want to see an end to senseless violence caused by humanity?

        So my belief that God is doing this in the hearts and minds of people all over the world is causing the world harm?

        You would rather spread a message that all religion is wrong. Which teaches the negative value of intolerance towards “religion.” That my beliefs of what Christianity is, is wrong because it teaches a “religion.” If you take out the parts I mention God, would you agree that those things are positive values to teach? Because the questions above are the meaning behind the examples you are “using against” me…

      • Oh my, KD. No, KD, I’ve been speaking out against the exactly same thing that I was in the original post. All religions, and we know the definition and context I was using the term in, are based in the supernatural. Even Buddhism, and we went over this already, KD. Again, in my original post, the definition of religion that I am addressing is the one where it is beliefs, attitudes, practices based on belief in the supernatural. Your ignorance of various religions does not change this. My “narrow” definition of the word is the original definition of the word and the other broader definitions came about by comparing the religious to others who are obsessed with something. Since I was using that definition from the beginning, your bizarre intent on calling atheist religious is amusing and based on you trying to use an alternate definition to give your argument weight. That’s called creating a strawman argument, KD. It does seem that you can be taught what logical fallacies are but the teaching doesn’t seem to stick.

        What I’m curious about is why you are so desperate to claim that atheists have a religion? The thought process I seem to be seeing is the following: KD believes that religion is bad, since he is sure that he has a “way of life” rather than a religion. Religion must be bad since people can show that religion doesn’t do what it promises and show that it causes harm. Per KD, this is only because humans are involved and it’s not the fault of his god, not at all.

        Since all religion is bad, and atheism is bad and wrong per KD, then atheism must be a religion. It seems that you just want to have one more reason to pretend atheism is bad and wrong *and* claim that atheism is just as harmful as KD’s religion/way of life. Quite a schoolyard whine “but but you’re just as bad as me, so you can’t complain about what I do.”

        Your broad definition of the word is indeed right, but again you use it in an attempt to create a strawman argument, that somehow atheists are religious just like the religions I demonstrate are harmful. It seems that you can’t quite understand that words have meanings and those depend on definition and context. To remove the definition I used and ignore the context, shows that you are not interested in addressing my actual thoughts at all.

        You claim:” My point was never “all atheists” share the same beliefs, practices, or attitudes. “Let’s look at what you said in your posts and on your blog:

        “Do atheists have a personal set or institutionalized system of attitudes, beliefs, and practices?” I of course said no, and you continued insisting we do in the following quotes.

        “Or rather are you saying all theistic religions are wrong but your atheistic religion is right?”

        “they always think they are 100% right without question to what they believe”

        “I will make a prediction that if an atheist reads this they will consider that making conversations a dialogue is just a weak attempt to avoid “losing a debate.””

        “Atheists put their faith (and possible worship) in humanity.”

        “An atheist friend of mine posted this link http://americanhumanist.org/ on Facebook. Looks a lot like a religious website to me…posted beliefs attitudes and where you can find groups of other humanists? We surely can’t ignore the amount of proselytizing atheists do today. I have no issues if you want people to believe as you, but call it what it is: a religion, or a worldview, or a way of life just like people who believe in a god.”

        Again and again, we have you claiming that atheism is a religion, that we all share the same beliefs, practices and attitudes. That means that all atheists would have to follow the same beliefs, practices, attitudes, etc, to be atheists. We do not, so your claim that atheism is a religion is false. I do love how now you want to claim now that every person’s personal beliefs is a religion and thus there are billions upon billions of religions now in the world from KD’s attempt to avoid how he’s failed. This is the best. In order to avoid admitting he’s wrong when claiming that atheism is a religion, now we have religions everywhere and anything at all means qualifies as a religion. Ah, there we go right into the vagueness that theists require. Change the meaning so your beliefs can still struggle on, no matter what. I do like how you’ve managed to make your religion about God and Jesus Christ as silly as the fascination with a television show and sports teams. I like the idea of the Gospel according to Captain Kirk. That character is certainly a better human being than this Jesus Christ character.

        Your comments *do* reflect commonly held beliefs found in Christianity. I do love how you try to claim that they only “may” reflect those beliefs. Such denial is definitely enlightening. I have already shown which of your beliefs I find to cause harm, KD. You claim that science supports your myths. That is a lie and lies cause harm, KD. Ignorance causes harm. You have tried to lie to others to make them think that science agrees with you and it does not. Science shows that there is no evidence for any of your religion’s claims. You have tried to hide that.

        You claim that prayer works. It doesn’t. Nothing supports that it does, and if you would look at the latest few posts on Dr. Coyne’s blog, you can see just how bad religion/way of life/belief harms people. Here’s a link directly to the posts on the subject of how faith kills: http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2013/11/11/religious-exemptions-from-childrens-healthcare-part-1/ http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2013/11/12/religious-exemptions-from-childrens-healthcare-part-2-medical-care-during-illness-and-one-childs-story/

        Now, I’m hoping this horrifies you and that you’d never so something like these things. But the imaginary nonsense you believe in is the same as these people do. You are hopefully editing this belief so you don’t harm your daughters. They aren’t, and they are just as faithful as you and are just as sure that they are right.

        I quoted you in these many comments and responded directly to you ““That I deny my way of living life and follow Jesus’ way of living.” Here you claim to know what JC’s way of living is. Many TrueChristians make the same claim and again, you folks don’t agree.”

        And since you don’t’ agree, you waste time and resources. You try to convert others, even other Christians, all the time wasting time and resources. And if you really want to go into the whole conversion/missionary thing, you damn millions *if* your bible nonsense is correct. That’s the harm your beliefs cause. Now, I expect you to deny you believe “those” parts so you can again deny responsibility.

        You don’t even follow you own supposed beliefs:

        “That every person should be treated with the respect the deserve…you don’t agree with that?”

        Hah, this from the person who is sure that anyone who disagrees about what his god “really” means is “misusing” the bible. Yep, lots of “respect” there, KD. This from the person who tells lies about me and other atheists. Yep, lots of “respect” in telling lies, KD. This from someone who says it’s okay to lie to people that something is true when even you aren’t sure you believe it. Lying to people is not respecting them, KD. Not even when you think it’s for “their own good”. I agree that every person should be treated with the respect that they have earned. That’s why I don’t lie to them.

        “That we should teach tolerance rather than intolerance?” I certainly agree that tolerance should be taught. Your religion doesn’t do this. The bible does not teach this. It says that those who do not agree with whatever this god wants, are damned, at best to a firey death, at worst to eternal torture. So much for “tolerance”. Again, we see that TrueChristians are all sure that their god agrees with them and they pick and choose from the bible to create the god they want.

        I do think we should love those who deserve to be loved. You see, I have conditions on love, and so does your god. I do not see that we should serve others for no reason but the selfish idea that we are going to get some magical reward. I think we should help each other, not be subservient.

        Your religion revels in senseless violence. Or have you missed that last book? Violence is caused by humanity, some of it senseless, some of it to stop worse violence. We have gotten better at that since we are getting better at realizing we are all humans, not only members of some tribe or faith.

        I do want to see people healed. We humans are always getting better at that. Your religion? Oh yes, where are those amputees with new limbs? The vets so harmed by head trauma getting up and recognizing their families? Now what excuse will you offer? The good ol’ “the healing was spiritual”?

        You may have a slightly nicer version of Christianity, but it’s still as much myth and nonsense as any other TrueChristians. You again claim that your version is the only right one and cannot provide any evidence that this is true. You still do harm and you are still quite a hypocrite when you try to tell me that the bible teaches a way of life, and then proceed to try to tell me it only teaches “good” things. I’ve read it. I know better.

        All religion is wrong, it is based on myth and nonsense. It does not describe the world as it is. It tries to claim that there is some “truth” and that only some people have it. Those people cannot show that this is the case. These people try to convince others that they do have this truth and they lie. I have no problem in being intolerant against harmful things, KD. I am quite “intolerant” of people who support slavery, who say that their religion is better than others and try to convert them, who say that one type of love is superior to another, that some people are second-class citizens because of sex or sexual orientation. Intolerance is not always bad or “negative”, KD. Tolerating harmful things just for the chance to pretend you are superior is just selfish and ignorant.

        You have no evidence that your god even exists, much less that this god can do anything including bringing tolerance, healing, peace, etc to the world. Present evidence of this, that your god is the actor doing any of this. Now, the problem is that all theists will claim the same thing for their god. Now how do we tell which god is doing this? Or that is doing other things? Was it God that helped the folks who actually survived the 9/11 events or was it Allah that helped the terrorists? How do we assign responsibility?

        Your religion doesn’t only teach those things, KD. It teaches much much more. And to deny that is rather silly since anyone can read the bible and listen to the preachers, and know that what it teaches isn’t only the happy warm kitten fuzzies that you’ve cherry picked.

      • Well Vel, you certainly showed me! Get all upset when I use a word out of context by using the broad definition…but then continually use my comments out of context.

        Not to mention throwing in your views and beliefs of what the Bible says as if it’s how I understand it or should interpret it. Or that I’m simply cherry picking the parts I like and have ignored all the parts I don’t like. While you cherry pick all the parts that sound harsh and support you beliefs of what the Bible teaches and ignore all the parts that don’t support what you believe it says. You seem very proud that you’ve read the Bible…have you studied it, have you read what historically has been taught by theologians…studied the context if the history and culture at the time it was written, asked questions why certain parts are in there, reasoned and wrestled with it. Studied the original language and tried to understand how it fits in our culture and knowledge today?

        Or do you simply, I’ve read it and now you quote it to support what you believe and against what others believe?

        I’ve not once denied their are things that are hard to understand or things that can be interpreted and used to cause harm in the Bible. Or that you’re trying to convince me that you know or understand the Bible better than I do?

        You really do not understand me or my beliefs. I would venture to say that you feel the same about me: that I don’t understand you. I’ve learned a lot about you during our conversation. You still probably haven’t watched the video of my daughter, not because I have not earned your respect but because doing so would change your views of me from religious monster to human being. You want to sit there and condemn me or the things I stand for as if you are the superior one. You use cliches and ignorance to make me fit your definitions.

      • So we still have no actual responses to my questions from KD. Not surprising. Here we go again! :)

        I do enjoy you, KD. Now you fantasize that I am “all upset”. No, not even a bit. I am indeed concerned with your actions, but upset? That would mean that I’m upset over a TrueChristian who tries to redefine words, ignore context and who has demonstrably lies. In that you are one of a dime a dozen, there’s nothing much to be upset about. I’m sorry if you need me to feel upset to feel important.

        Please do show how I’ve used any of your comments out of context. KD, if I have, you can show the comment and tell us the context it was meant in. If you can’t, then it’s just more shit thrown at the wall hoping that someone else will come up with something for you. But we know that every time I ask for evidence of your accusations, you have been unable, or unwilling, to provide such evidence. Now, I’m expecting you to claim that you don’t have time, just like you did when I asked you to support your claims that my posts are filled with egregious logical fallacies.

        I know what the bible says. I’ve read it. I don’t care how you might claim to understand or interpret it. I am going with what it literally says, not some invention of what a TrueChristian things that their god “really meant”. TrueChristians can’t agree on what that “really meant” is. That only goes to show that your supposedly divinely written/inspired book is worthless since it gives no uniform special meaning. You all think that everyone else should understand it and interpret it just like you.

        And it’s hysterical to watch you claim that I cherry-pick your bible. No, KD, I find all of it to be utterly ridiculous. I can demonstrate cherry picking by any TrueChristian, no matter what they want to “prove” about their religion and their god. Yep, I can show all of those lovely parts of the bible that not only “sound harsh” but are harsh. I think that commanding that men rape and kill women to be pretty darn harsh. I think that killing people for working on some “Sabbath” is harsh (and indeed, when is that Sabbath? Saturday? Sunday? Something new that you’ve made up?) I’m sorry you don’t and only feel that it “seems” harsh.

        I can also cherry pick just like you do. We have parts that say that doing good things will get more salvation than belief or your god’s whim, Matthew 25. We have JC saying that to be good one should give up all worldly goods, something I think could be a good thing. We have JC saying that the last shall be first and the first last, showing that there may be equality. Paul even says this, though he seems to forget he says this in later nonsense about how women should behave and how they are saved. I can also make a lovely case for both free will and for predestination. And this shows again how your bible is nothing to be depended on for any “truth”. So, I haven’t “ignored” anything, KD. I know all of your bible, not just what I was told by pastors and TrueChristians. I have read where TrueChristians say that one should lie to potential Christians because they don’t need to know the truth about how fractious Christianity is. C.S. Lewis did this in the preface to Mere Christianity: ““And secondly, I think we must admit that the discussion of these disputed points has no tendency at all to bring an outsider into the Christian fold. So long as we write and talk about them we are much more likely to deter him from entering any Christian communion than to draw him into our own. Our divisions should never be discussed except in the presence of those who have already come to believe that there is one God and that Jesus Christ is His only Son” (p.vi).” Again, I don’t have any need or desire to respect someone who intentionally lies.

        I have indeed studied the bible, KD. I’ve read also many many apologetics books, those where someone tries to say that their interpretation/understanding is the right one. I have ready many theologians, from many different ages and many different sects. I’ve studied the text and the history and the culture at the time it was written. I have repeatedly asked questions why certain parts are there and have seen TrueChristians disagree on what parts are literal and metaphor. I have indeed reasoned and wrestled with it, and have concluded that it is completely nonsense just like the myths of ancient Greece, Sumeria, Babylon, the Incan Empire, etc. I have studied the original languages, but that always amuses me when a TrueChristian demands if I did that. That only shows that you all think that your interpreters are evidently wrong. So how does any Christian know what the bible says without knowing Aramaic and Greek?

        So, now what since I’ve shown your accusations to be untrue? The usual reply by a TrueChristian is that I can’t possibly have studied the bible since I don’t agree with them. I didn’t read the “right” apologetics, or the “right” theologians. Only “right” studying is that which gets a “right” interpretation. And of course, TrueChristians can’t agree on what that “right” version it.

        You, as usual, ignore when I demonstrate something you say as false and run hurriedly to the next standard nonsense by a TrueChristian. Run to the next, KD. Maybe you’ll find something new. Or not.
        You have claimed that you know what the “way of Jesus” is, KD. “““That I deny my way of living life and follow Jesus’ way of living.” We have you sure that you know something that no one else does and that it isn’t hard to understand or interpreted wrong. You have claimed that you, and you alone, have done it right. I wonder, why a god would make a book that was so screwed up that anyone could make up anything they wanted from it? Could it be that this god doesn’t exist? That it isn’t what you claim, omnipotent and omniscient? Or that it is simply malicious? Now, here we’ll probably hear the “free will” argument, which again can be supported and contradicted from your very own bible. There is no reason to think that you know the bible better than I do, KD. There is no reason to think that any TrueChristian does. I may not understand it completely, but that does not mean that some magical being is behind it. Again, we have no idea who wrote the books of the bible, KD. We have legends but nothing concrete. We have it likely that one man, “Paul” wrote several but again, we know very little about him. We do know that none of the events he has claimed can be supported by evidence, just like the other essential events in the bible.

        I have no problem in saying that I understand you. I may not understand you completely but your own words have given me a depth of understanding. Unless you want to claim that your posts are meaningless and no information can be extracted from them? I have no idea if you understand me. I do know that you have intentionally lied about me, KD. You have resorted to creating a strawman atheist to address, not me. It’s funny how you claim that you have “learned a lot about” me in this but I somehow magically can’t do the same back. That’s lovely. :)

        And no, I haven’t watched your daughter. I find that you want to use her to be a bit creepy, KD. I don’t need to watch her to have any respect for you, KD. I don’t have respect for you , KD, because you are an intentional liar. I don’t have respect for you because you whine you don’t have time to actually provide evidence for my supposedly egregious logical fallacies but post again and again after that with more baseless accusations and of course can’t provide evidence for those either even when I say “please provide the evidence”.

        I don’t think you are a monster, KD. You aren’t that impressive. I suspect you want to pretend you are such a martyr, that the mean ol’ atheist just hates you. I don’t, so your fantasies also fail. You are just one more human being who believes in nonsense. You are like billions of others that I also don’t “hate”. You have decided to believe in something that has no evidence to support it for whatever reason you have. You may believe because someone you had real reason to trust told you this was true. Most theists of all kinds believe because of this. You may believe because you need to feel special and safe, the very best friend of a omnipotent, omniscient being. You may believe because you are desperately afraid of death; very many humans are and that’s completely understandable. There’s a lot of reasons to accept religion, but none of them are based on reality. This goes back to my original post, that at one point religion may have had some use but it no longer does. Humans don’t need religion to heal, increase tolerance, decrease violence, etc. I noticed that you totally ignored my responses to your claims that somehow you religion is the only way to do this and that only your god can do this. Why did you ignore that, KD? Is the truth so hard to accept, that your religion isn’t what you claim? It seems to be so. I’d love if your god could actually heal someone. As of now, no evidence for this at all. No more than any claim that Allah healed someone or that Krishna healed someone.

        I condemn you of things that I can, and have, shown you responsible for. You have lied and I have shown that. You have ignored my requests and I have shown that. I don’t have to be superior, I just have to have the evidence to support my words. You don’t, and I have asked you repeatedly for that evidence. And now we have one more instance of where you accuse me of using clichés and ignorance and of course, have yet to support *those* accusations either.

        So, now what will be the next accusations you will make, KD? What requests from me will you again ignore?

      • I guess the most sensible thing is for me to believe in my nonsense because it makes more sense than your 2 cents any day of the week.

        I will point out that if you believe tolerance should be taught and are then intolerant towards anyone you are a hypocrite.

        In case you were still wondering, I’m ignoring all of you requests. And suggesting you spend more time with your husband. Maybe have a few kids. Enjoy life and the beautiful mess we live in. Understand that we are all broken people and it’s okay not to be perfect. And learn that people can believe in God and not do harm. (They can even be religious or have religion)

        Before you say anything against that last part, just look in the mirror and say, “Vel, look you are about to make a straw man argument, DON’T DO IT!”

        How many more lies are you going to come up with about me Vel? I believe in God because I fear death? Far from it Vel. Perhaps you meant I fear eternal punishment…you’d still be wrong about why I believe in God. Or is it because I trusted my parents and they taught me to believe in God? Wrong again…Acceptance from the herd? Strike four, Vel. Keep trying though!

      • You of course can’t show that your nonsense makes more sense at all.

        I am also happy that you again demonstrate that your idea of tolerance means allowing anything. Tolerance is also earned, KD. I am very happy that I don’t tolerate people who advocate slavery. You seem to have no problem with them. That’s sad.

        Yep, I know you’re ignoring all of my requests. Isn’t that convenient? Then you don’t have to admit that you are a liar.

        Aw, and now you’re telling me to spend more time with my husband. Is this “uppity” woman too much for you, KD? My husband is here chuckling on how yet one more TrueChristian thinks I to pay more attention to my husband. And golly, I should have kids?

        I do enjoy life. Nice attempt again to make believe that I don’t. I am sorry that so many TrueChristians must try to pretend that everyone who doesn’t agree with them must be miserable. Alas, I’m likely just as happy as you, KD. I am not perfect and neither are you. You don’t have some magical truth, no matter how much you try to pretend you do, that you know how to follow Jesus in the “right” way.

        You have yet to show that people can believe in your god and do no harm. More baseless claims. How nice.

        And more lies. Please do show me where I have made *any* strawman arguments, KD. But of course you can’t.

        Please do show where I’ve lied about you, KD. I’m still waiting for you to actually support your claims. I did not say that you believed in God because you fear death. I would suggest you improve your reading comprehension since I said that you “could” believe because of that list of reasons.

        You make more baseless claims that we are “all” broken people. Nope, we “all” aren’t. That’s just your baseless fantasy. You want to pretend you are broken, be my guest.

        I’m sure you might fear eternal punishment. I would too, if I believed in such nonsense. That makes your religion no more than obeying a terrorist, since your religion requires the silliness of hell and the nonsense of Revelation. Now, if you don’t fear death, there are some jobs that need those who aren’t afraid of death. Teams that disarm left over ordinance from long ago wars, etc. But I suspect that volunteering for such jobs so people who are aware that they have only one life might not waste theirs is something you would not do.

        KD, you weren’t born with some concept of god. You ended up believing in what you grew up with in your culture. You’d have been a Muslim if you grew up in Iran. You’d have been a worshipper of Odin if you were born ancient Norway.

      • It’s amazing you atheists don’t have a religion because I’ve heard all these same arguments time and time again from other atheists….unless you have about a dozen blogs and post from various accounts repeatedly in comment sections online.

        Here is a question for you. If you are so opposed to slavery or things that cause harm…how active are you in stopping human sex trafficking? Do you speak out against it? Do you support groups that are actively seeking ways to aid victims of sex trafficking?

        You even said yourself that you received in the mail a thing for your local open door mission and a phone book with 10 pages of churches. Do you volunteer at the open door mission? Do you donate there? Or because the majority of the people who run it believe in God do you justify your actions of apathy? You did say you want to help people, didn’t you?

        As for the argument on the “concept of god” how ignorant. You’d be Muslim if you grew up in Iran. You’d have been a worshiper of Odin if you were born in ancient Norway…you’re arguments tend to neglect reality.

        There are a number of reasons why you became an atheist. And all of them are as disputable as why someone became a theist. The reality is that it’s a choice. People change, ideas change, everything around us is changing almost all of the time.

        The God I believe in doesn’t change. He is orchestrating everything until He gives the cue to stop. As culture changes, as beliefs change, we are either moving towards or away from the culture and belief system that God desires us to have. As our knowledge and understanding of “good” and “evil” and of God grows, we are able to see what was truly already there. Like the Higgs-Boson particle. It was always there, we just never had the knowledge or technology to observe it.

        You say God is no longer needed in the world today. That humanity can do it on their own. That’s been the story from the beginning.

        You bring up that you do not respect or tolerate people advocating slavery…is this done where you live today? Otherwise you are arguing a mute point. Yeah, it’s fun to say, but again it ignores the culture and beliefs of the current time. Now, if you are talking about people who are racist, that’s a different story and you need to work on calling things what they are…I thought we’ve been through this already with the using a narrow definition and stating “all” religion. You can argue that using alternative definitions takes your comments out of context…but when you say “all” is it out of context to use “all” the definitions of the word?

        Apparently your parents are terrorist then? Teaching you that your actions have consequences. That when you disobey them you are punished in someway…or were you spoiled and never grounded or punished? That might answer the question of how highly you think of yourself…probably also the oldest or an only child, unless you are trying to compensate for being the youngest and overlooked child? I’m sure you felt like they were terrorists when you did something that got you in trouble…but in hindsight you now realize they were only looking out for you. That they loved and cared about you. Good parents, even when they believe in nonsense, do those things Vel.

        Oh wait…but I’m lying about you again Vel. Funny, how when I say something about you it’s lying…but when you say things about me that are not accurate you’re somehow not lying?

        So, you’ve made a choice not to believe in any gods. There are no if’s and’s or but’s about it. It’s a choice. Always has been, always will be. It is up to you to live with that choice, which you seem very inclined to do. Don’t think that because you do not believe in any gods or believe you are not religious or have any religion that you are not capable of causing harm. You’ll probably say I’m using the Slippery Slope fallacy…and you’re right. You do not know what your words and actions today will bring tomorrow. You hope that by “speaking out, being disrespectful, and being intolerant” towards religion and belief in gods that it will bring good. For someone who likes evidence so much, do you ignore that you have absolutely no evidence of what 20 years from now will look like?

        So unlike your Dr. friend states…you’re hope and faith in science and atheism is no different than hope and faith in God. Time is the truest test of what is true.

        I haven’t even gone into the harm that science and technology has brought the world we live in. You want to know who is responsible for harm…it’s not religion…it’s not gods…it’s people. Whether those people believed in some sort of god or no gods at all…people are responsible. So using the actions of people to speak out against an entire group IS A STRAW MAN argument.

      • Back to this again? KD needs to pretend that atheism is a religion and for what? Well, we’ll never know because KD can’t say.

        Why yes, KD, you’ve heard the same arguments before. It’s because religion has the same failures. 2+2 equals four today and tomorrow and 5000 years from now. This still does not represent a religion, unless of course you want to claim mathematics is a religion. Again, you have yet to show that atheists have the same beliefs, attitudes and practices that are based on the supernatural. You have at best shown that any thing can be considered a religion if the definition is broad enough, and your faith is no more important than a sports team.

        And more questions attempting to claim that I can’t possibly be against slavery. Sorry, KD, you fail again. I do speak out against sex trafficking because sex trafficking is just one type of slavery. I support organizations that help those who would be victims not be victims. I support Oxfam, who makes sure people aren’t starving and fall victim. I support FINCA who allows men and women to support themselves so they aren’t victims. I support various organizations that support the education of girls so they aren’t victimized by those who would say that women are only good for sex and childbirth, Room To Read, etc. I love to read and found that reading is very very important to show the truth about the world. You know why a lot of girls can’t get to school? Because they get their menstrual cycle, and are told they are “dirty”. How sad that there are still people who think that menstruation is evil. There are many many organizations who work on this, IJM (though they seems to have trouble in distinguishing legal sex workers and those who are enslaved), the Clinton Global Initiative, etc. Now, let’s consider sex trafficking, defined as where people are enslaved to provide sex. It’s a horrible thing when a man or a woman is forced to have sex that they do not want to.

        So what is one to think about these commands directly from a god? “12 If they refuse to make peace and they engage you in battle, lay siege to that city. 13 When the LORD your God delivers it into your hand, put to the sword all the men in it. 14 As for the women, the children, the livestock and everything else in the city, you may take these as plunder for yourselves. And you may use the plunder the LORD your God gives you from your enemies. 15 This is how you are to treat all the cities that are at a distance from you and do not belong to the nations nearby.”

        “When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl’s owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. “

        So, again, yes, I do support organizations that help those who are enslaved. I speak out against it. You have yet to do so. You have yet to show where I am wrong in showing where your bible does not speak out against slavery.

        I do not volunteer at the local mission. They proselytize to their attendees and I will not support a religion that I find to be harmful. Indeed, why should I when I have been told how much Christians do for the community? I have been offered that as an excuse why churches should not pay taxes. So, I am expecting them to do what they supposedly do. But as we both see, they do not. My resources go to other non-sectarian organizations that do not require someone to listen to their nonsense. I donate to Goodwill, to the Purple Heart folks who help vets, etc. Again, you fail when you want to pretend the mean ol’ atheist doesn’t help anyone. I help plenty of people and I don’t waste money on religion.

        Please do tell me how you would have grown up Christian in Iran born to Muslim parents, having Muslim people in charge, having muslim teachers, etc. Of course, you can’t. Again, you claim I “neglect reality” but we are again left with a vague baseless claim and no evidence from you.

        I became an atheist for very known reasons to me. I realized that the stories I had been told were false. I did research. I found nothing to contradict the evidence I had that uncovered that this religion was false. I researched other religions. There was no difference in their claims from Christianity’s. Now, I’m sure you think you know why I became an atheist. Please tell me these “number of reasons” you think you know. If you cannot, it is again evidence that you have nothing to support your claims. Please also “dispute” my reasons. You say you can; do so. Or again, it’s more baseless claims on your part. The reality is that we do have choices but they are influenced in what we learned when we were very young. In case you are wondering, I do not believe in free will. I believe that we have the next best thing, the unawareness of what all influences us.

        You cannot prove your god exists, much less that it never changes. Your claim is meaningless since we have no evidence for your god at all. I could claim that the great arglebark never changes too, KD. You make the same claims of other theists. I can replace the word “God” in your long litany of claims with the name of Vishnu, Allah, Tezcatlipoca and have the same nonsense that you think is ever-so unique to your religion. Let’s have a go, shall we (some changes made to provide grammar)? “Allah, who I believe in doesn’t change. He is orchestrating everything until He gives the cue to stop. As culture changes, as beliefs change, we are either moving towards or away from the culture and belief system that Allah desires us to have. As our knowledge and understanding of “good” and “evil” and of Allah grows, we are able to see what was truly already there. Like the Higgs-Boson particle. It was always there, we just never had the knowledge or technology to observe it”. Oh yes, the Roman Catholics do the same. It’s great how this god always mumbles and then humans come up with a whole new pile of “truths”.

        Let’s go back to slavery. I find it always evil. Your bible e.g. your god never did. The only thing that changes is the religion, and it always changes in response to humans, *never* the other way around. Each TrueChristan also claims that their knowledge of their god has grown. So who do I believe, KD? Your version or theirs? You’ve yet to answer that question, KD. How do I tell who is right?
        You have yet to show your god exists, much less that it has done *anything*. I’m still waiting, KD. Humanity has done everything on their own. We’ve ignored the willful ignorance that religion has claimed is the only way. We have invented modern medicine. Now, I’m pretty sure you’ll try to claim that your god “gave” it to us. Which is just great, KD, because then that begs the question why your god held back on antibiotics, anesthesia, blood transfusions, chemotherapy, etc. Did your god just hate everyone before “giving” those life-saving things? What is your excuse?

        I do not respect or tolerate people advocating slavery. You are quite right, not much slavery going on in the US, but per your own sex trafficking question, it still is, so the point is not moot. Thanks for that. And I do love when TrueChristians insist that their god isn’t responsible for approving slavery and it was just “culture”. Poor unpowerful god, just can’t do anything about slavery but oh, if its magical box is falling over, instant death. Tsk.

        I also do not respect racists, or hmmm, sexists, KD. You know, those who would tell a woman to go tend her husband and get to having babies. :) However, we still have people who think that people who are not like them should be slaves. We still have people claim that the bible is to be followed literally, every bit of it, and well, you know that JC said not one bit of his father’s laws are to be ignored until earth and heaven depart. So what of those Christians, KD? Are they right or you? I still do not respect those who support slavery or who follow a religion that never spoke out against it, that never told slaves to resist, but only said stay where you are and obey. I’m sure that’s what those sex traffickers say “Do what you are told, stay where you are, and obey”. If I were a pimp, I’d love this “18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God.”

        Now, KD, since I am against sex trafficking e.g. sex slavery, and have supported organizations who fight against it, and have spoken against it, I am against slavers, slavery and indeed racists. They are two different words, slavery and racists, and hmmm, who were the slavers? Those who said one race is less than another and should serve them.

        My parents are terrorists? Nope. I do know that my actions have consequences. I was punished by my parents for doing something they didn’t like with a finite punishment. They didn’t threaten to kill me or torture me eternally. I know my parents exist. Now, let’s compare my parents and their punishments and your supposed god and its supposed punishments. Oh, yes, there is no evidence for your god, or that it punishes anyone or that it blesses anyone. I do love how now you insist that I must be the eldest child *or* an only child *or* a youngest child *or* an over looked child to explain your baseless assumption that I “think highly” of myself. Golly, KD, how what if I’m a middle child? The third child of 8? How about blond? A red head? Always great to see you thrash about for a “reason” why I am something you fantasize I am.

        Good parents do not threaten to kill their children if they disobey. Good parents don’t kill their children for doing something that they needed done. Good parents do not make up rules and then say if you follow the rules, surprise, you’ll still be damned if you don’t agree to the parent changing the rules. Good children do not control the minds of their children to show off. Good parents do not allow someone to harm their children for a bet and then try to make up for the harm with a brand new toy. Don’t tell grandma I hit you and you can have a new bike!

        I call out your lying when you lie, KD. I’m waiting patiently for any evidence to support your claims about me, KD. You’ve refused to give it. I have supported each accusation of you with evidence. Please show where I have not.

        I have not made a choice to not believe in any gods. I have come to the conclusion that there are no gods by the lack of evidence for them and evidence showing that claims about them and their stories are not true. You may as well say that I have made a “choice” to obey gravity or to choose to believe that a 50 megawatt laser will do a great deal of harm to a sheet of steel. Reality doesn’t involve choice.
        I have never said that not having religion makes me perfect or that I cannot or have not caused harm. Nice strawman argument there, KD. Making up things that I have never said is exactly that. And no, you aren’t using a slippery slope fallacy. That is when someone says doing one thing will inevitably cause something worse than they can prove to happen. You are right that I have no perfect idea of what my words and actions will wreak. But I do have a good idea backed with evidence that standing against slavery, racism, sexism, etc will only help. People talk about the “right side of history” and they do that for a reason. We do know things and we do know that freedom is better than slavery. We do know that equality is better than considering some people less than ourselves.

        You go back to the nonsense that TrueChristians always return to, that we somehow can’t know anything. That’s hilariously untrue, but it’s always great to watch TCs insist that it’s true when they simultaneously claim that they know all sorts of things about something that they can’t even provide evidence for. You also make the same pathetic wager that Pascal attempted to make. You want to pretend that you have the only real god and that I’m going to regret not wagering that it is real. Again, evidence?

        I trust science, I have no faith in it as you do your god. I do have hope, but again, that doesn’t require a god.

        Time is indeed the truest test of what is true. Still waiting for your god to return. How much longer, KD? Another 20 years? Another thousand years? Another 5000 for the nonsense of Revelation to happen? Another 10,000? Let’s look at the history of Christianity. We started with early Christians who were sure that JC was coming back very very soon. Then a bunch of “councils” trying to figure out what JC actually was. Then we get the RCC saying that it’s the “original church”. Of course we go onto Martin Luther who is sure that his version is the only right one, sola scriptura and all of that. Protestant churches get boring and then we get megachurches and “independent” Christians who are all sure that their variation is what their god “really” meant. And each set is sure that they are the ultimate end to Christianity, just like you, KD.

        Oh please please do go into “the harm that science and technology has brought the world”. I agree, it’s people that cause harm, and it’s people that invented religion. No gods have done anything.
        Alas, no, it is not a strawman argument to use the actions of people as examples for speaking out against an entire group when that group is responsible for those actions. Honestly, do you even know what a strawman argument is? But, since you think it is, please do show how it is.

      • Vel, really, an ad hominem by calling me a sexist…

        And a straw man? Somehow saying “spend time” = “tend to?” And “maybe have some kids” = “get to having kids?” To me spending time is things like go out on a date, rent a movie and watch it on the sofa, or even asking him to rub your feet…And maybe have some kids is only a suggestion so you can actually know what it’s like to have kids and not be completely ignorant about parenthood. If you don’t want to have kids you don’t have to…that’s why I said “maybe.”

        As for science and technology…it’s responsible for the weapon technology we have today, a more efficient and effective way that kills the “enemy.” Wars have been fought over human history for various reasons, so I hope you don’t attempt to blame religion and belief in god for every war.

        Science and technology are responsible for any number of drugs that cause harm. Yes, there are many drugs out there that are beneficial to us but as a result there are also drugs that are used to cause harm or used improperly.

        Science and Technology are responsible for cyber crimes, increases in fraud, it could also be linked to increases in sex crimes (this one’s a bit more of a stretch I’ll admit).

        Science and Technology are also responsible for a number of chemicals that cause harm. Below is an article about acgrochemicals being used in Argentina without people being properly trained. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/20/argentina-pesticides-health-problems_n_4131825.html

        You yourself even used the example of someone jumping into a ladle of molten iron to cause that person certain death. If it weren’t for science and technology you would not have been able to use such a gruesome example of a way someone could kill themselves.

        How illogical would it be to say that because some people use science and technology to cause harm therefore all science and technology is wrong? If you notice, the question is much like your entire post and comments. That because some people use religion to cause harm that all religion causes harm, is wrong, or is “responsible.”

        I’m not going to deny that people have used religion or belief in god to cause harm. I’m not even going to deny that there are parts of the Bible that could be taken that “to please or obey God that they should do those things.” The reason some Christians say others (e.g., atheists or other Christians) take those parts out of context as an argument against belief in God/Christianity or in justifying their beliefs, practices, and attitudes: Is because today we are thousands of years removed from the actual context of the culture it occurred in. If you consider something that is written today and viewed 4000 years from now, how easily do you think it could be taken out of context by a future culture?

        Faith: strong belief or trust in someone or something…you don’t have a strong belief or trust in science? You don’t hope or have faith that science and technology will do more good for humanity than it will evil, which there is no proof of what science and technology will cause 20 years from now? I am not denying that good has come from advances in science and technology. But I am also not neglecting the harm that has come as a result of it either. Science and Technology could be responsible for what leads to the end of humanity.

        Earlier you made a comment about how you know “some Christians were involved in abolishing slavery.” Do you have any evidence that supports that Christians were only a minority group in abolishing slavery? I would venture to say that the majority of those who wanted to abolish slavery had religion…the majority of those who did not want slavery abolished also likely had religion.

        I’m glad to hear you learned that your actions have consequences. You bring up that your parents gave you a finite punishment. So apparently it’s reasonable for a finite being to give a finite punishment but it’s unreasonable for a supposed eternal being to give an eternal punishment? I’m guessing you’ll try and hang your hat on the “torture” or “torment” part of the punishment, again this could be a contextual issue.

        It is a straw man argument when you extend the actions of a particular group like Westboro Baptist towards an entire group (anyone who is Christian) that are not responsible for the actions of the particular group. It is also a straw man when you misrepresent my position by using what you believe parts of the bible to say and asserting that because I am a Christian that reads the Bible that I believe those things as well. So, can you prove that you did not in fact use these straw man arguments in any of your comments? I’m rather confident that the evidence is there and you have simply overlooked it.

        I’m not trying to make you something you are not, I’m simply trying to understand who you are. Those comments are my thoughts on the possible psychological reasons for your beliefs and attitudes. In college you studied rocks, well I studied minds (Psychology).

        I’m sorry if my comments mislead you to believe that I meant that “somehow we can not know anything.” This may be another misrepresentation of what I said. But we cannot know everything with 100% certainty. And at times there are things we know but may never be 100% certain of them. I’ll give you that we can know somethings with 100% certainty…given the proper evidence…like if I hold an apple out and let go it will move in the direction towards the earth. But I cannot be certain that it will reach the ground or remain in the same state that I dropped it. For me to be certain of anything additional it would require additional evidence.

      • I see that KD has no idea what an ad hominem argument is. An ad hominem argument is when someone tries to claim an argument is invalid by citing something about their opponent that has nothing to do with the actual argument and might not even be true. For example, if I said “your argument is wrong because your mother dresses you funny” is a classic ad hominem argument. One can see more examples here: http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/ad-hominem.html I have not said your arguments fail because you appear to be a sexist man. I have shown that your arguments fail for many many other reasons.

        Again, it seems that KD has no idea what logical fallacies are. It then is no surprise that he cannot show where I have committed logical fallacies, no matter how much he claims I do.

        KD, calling you a sexist seems quite appropriate. Let’s see what you told me to do in your very own words “In case you were still wondering, I’m ignoring all of you requests. And suggesting you spend more time with your husband. Maybe have a few kids.” http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/not-so-polite-dinner-conversation-again-why-speak-out/#comment-2426 Now, I rather doubt you’d tell a man this. You might, but considering your other actions, claiming that having children changes a person, etc, it doesn’t seem likely. I will ask you a direct question: KD, if I were a man, would you have said this? Now, the answer is between you and your own conscience sicne I know I can’t trust what you say. If you don’t see how your “advice” reads as sexist, then you do have a problem. You may not have meant it that way, I am willing accept that, but it came across that way, as a classic TrueChristian bit of sexist nonsense right out of your magic book that says women should obey their husbands and that childbirth is the only way for a woman to be saved (1 Timothy 2). And it’s not only me who finds it that way. My husband sees it as such. An acquaintance at work sees it as such. If you have been reading other comments, my other commenters find it sexist and nothing more than a personal attack by someone who has nothing else.

        I do like how you now try to excuse your nonsense, by claiming that I’m wrong about your words. If you actually read my blog, you’d see that my husband and I do nearly everything together. Unlike a lot of married couples, we love to spend time with each other and do so every chance we get. All I see is you trying to get me to do anything but show you to be wrong. And alas for you, you appear to think that a real woman should spend time with her husband if she has one and that she should have children. I can understand why, your religion says plenty negative about women. That we should know our place, that we should not speak, that we should obey. Now, considering that you are a Christian, and that you think your bible tells you how to live your life, why wouldn’t you believe those parts of it that say women aren’t as good as men? Are these more parts that you are sure werent’ “really” meant by your god?

        I’ll try to educate KD again on what a strawman argument is. KD, a strawman argument is when you make up nonsense to argue against when you can’t argue against the actual words of your opponent. Now, since I can support the idea that Christians, per their religion, must consider women less than men, and you have claimed that you are a Christian, where is the strawman argument when I have said: “You know, those who would tell a woman to go tend her husband and get to having babies.”

        KD, you have made more baseless assumptions when you tried to claim that I did not spend time with my husband and that I don’t “enjoy life”. We always hang out on the couch together. Happily, we like much the same things and we love talking to each other. I already do what you think I should do, so again, you’ve failed. Indeed, we share your posts. Of course, you refuse to actually answer questions but surely you do remember when he kibitzed about your nonsense and had me ask “And as my husband has kibitzed at the moment, can you show me that Xenu didn’t send aliens to earth in spaceships shaped like DC-9s, strapped them to volcanoes and detonated atomic bombs to allow their souls to infest humans? Or is that just too silly to accept as possible? (that’s the core belief of Scientology, in case you didn’t know)” http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/not-so-polite-dinner-conversation-again-why-speak-out/#comment-2285

        And of course the nonsense about having kids was “only a suggestion”. How classic! Oooh, you want me to know how it is to have children and not be “completely ignorant about parenthood”. I’m not completely ignorant about parenthood, KD. One doesn’t have to have direct personal experience to know about parenthood, and I do know that your claims that being a parent changes you aren’t accurate. I can provide instance after instance where this is not true at all. I wonder, did you click on the links to show how harmful religion can be to children who need medical care? You may choose to be willfully ignorant but unfortunately for you, reality will always show you wrong.

        Science is the method that we discover things. Humans invented the process, so it is humans who are responsible for what becomes of those discoveries. Humans also have invented religion. Science has discovered/invented the benefits we have, modern medicine, computers, vehicles, wide-spread communications, education, etc. We have converted that weapon tech to beneficial uses, chemotherapy from chemical weapons, what used to be a network only for defense applications became the internet, etc. Drugs that are abused by humans were created to help humans. Humans are responsible for cybercrimes, not computers or technology, KD. Not unless you want to claim we have artificial intelligences. A computer is no more responsible for cybercrime than a rocket is responsible for sending a warhead downrange. Humans are responsible for it all. And it’s hilarious to watch you claim that computers are responsible for increases in sex crimes, even when you yourself realize that this is a simply ridiculous claims. You see, *that* is an actual slippery slope argument. Congratulations for constructing such a nice one!

        Wars have indeed been fought for various reasons. Desire for resources, religion, etc. Again, no dear KD, I have not and never have blamed religion and belief in god for every war. Nice attempt to try to imply I have or would. Clap-clap-clap! Now, I am a fair student of history, KD. I know that a very large number of wars were fought because of religion. Religion has often given the okay for why war is okay, that “those other people” don’t deserve the resources and we do. The entire OT has this as why war is okay (assuming that those wars actually happened and aren’t masturbatory fantasies of a desert tribe that wanted to feel special; we certainly have no evidence of them). That’s why the crusades were okay, the Thirty years war started and kept going, etc. It is only after nationalism (a writ large version of tribalism) comes about that wars become about something other than religion.

        Again, science is not “responsible” for people being ignorant about how to use chemicals. That is up to humans on their own. And ooh, it’s always going to be a train wreck when you try to use my own words against me, KD. Science and technology are not responsible for people being idiots. If you recall, my words were in response for your nonsense that “Nobody is 100% right.” I mentioned the ladle of molten iron being lethal in response to your claim that no one is 100% right in what they know. It’s just one of your many baseless and incorrect claims.

        People do not need science and technology to be stupid. It is quite illogical to say that since humans use science and technology to cause harm, this means that all science and technology should be considered harmful. But again, you use a strawman argument to argue against, KD. I never said that religion only causes harm. I said that religion causes harm and the few good things it does aren’t worth keeping it around since we have plenty of other sources for that good. Of course, if you actually did address my argument, all of your nonsense would fail even faster than it has so far. You have also been unable to show that science and technology is “responsible” for anything. Science and technology do not say do something because science and technology approves. Religion does say do “x” because some religion/god approves/wants you to. That shows responsibility of the concept for the action. Again, a TrueChristian compares apples to oranges in one more failed argument.

        You have denied that religion can be used to cause harm, KD. “By the way, your claim that all religions are wrong or in the least responsible for the harm done in the world is illogical. The most logical conclusion is that the same harm would have been done if belief in god/s never existed. Humanity is responsible for the harm done. “ You have claimed that those “other” Christians “misuse” the bible and aren’t using it “right”. There are parts of the bible that say directly that violence and harm will please god. It’s not that they can be “taken” to mean this, they *do* mean that exactly. In context and everything.

        You claim that the writings of the bible are taken out of “context” of the culture. Then that means your bible is nothing more than a product of that culture. It is no magical container of timeless truth. Your argument that a writing today could be taken out of context in 4000 years will only work if you agree that your bible is nothing more than human nonsense and contains by some omniscient/omnipotent god. Yep, a writing now could be and probably will be taken out of context, but it’s only a writing by a regular old human, nothing more. No claims of direct writing/inspiration of some magical being, just the writings of some fellow who had a grocery list (A Canticle for Leibowitz explores this). If the bible is just culture, then we have, at best, a god that is just for a group of desert dwellers who lived in ancient Palestine, and why do you it applies to you? Now, I’m guessing you’ll claim special revelation to explain how you know what it “really” means. Then we’re back to magic that has no evidence.

        Faith does mean a strong belief or trust in something. Again, that is not the definition I am using, “firm belief in something for which there is no proof” also mentioned in your bible “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. 2 This is what the ancients were commended for.” So, KD, were the ancients commended for a strong trust in something, trust that was earned from repeatable experiments? Or were they commended for belief in something that is unseen that has no evidence?

        I have plenty of hope that science will do more good for humanity that it will evil, since well that’s exactly what has happened so far. Again, we have evidence that technology and science have come up with inventions and discoveries that have helped far more people than they have harmed. But, if you have the stats otherwise, please do show them. If you can’t, then I have no evidence to base my trust on. Again, nice slippery slope argument.

        Yep, much earlier I did make a comment that some Christians were indeed involved in abolishing slavery. You know, in that post that you ignored when I showed that your bible in no ways speaks out against slavery and indeed does the exact opposite. I did not claim that Christians were a minority group or a majority group. And I know that many of these Christians were Unitarians. Now, KD, are they Christians per your belief? Many TrueChristiansn don’t believe so, and I ask you a direct question, who are Christians per your beliefs? Are Mormons? Unitarians? Jehovah’s Witnesses? Roman Catholics? Baptists? Presbyterians? Quakers? You can “venture” all you like but until you can show evidence, it’s just your guess. Now, let me lay out an argument: most TrueChristians claim that the US is a “Christian Nation” and it always has been. This would mean evidently that all or most US citizens were/are Christian. This would then mean that Christians were just as against abolition as were for it, if one is going with population. We can look at history and see things like the anti-abolition riots in the 1830s, and by the argument above, done by Christians. Jefferson Davis said that slavery was “established by the decree of Almighty God”. You can find quotes about how slavery is supported by Christianity by Bapstists and Presbyterians. There’s also the problem that abolitionists didn’t all agree on what shoudl be done. Some wanted freedom for the slaves, some wanted forced repatriation of people born in the US back to Africa (the origin of the nation of Liberia). Many churches split into northern and southern versions thanks to the question of slavery. Now, you can, like so many others, declare that any one who was anti-abolition wasn’t a TrueChristian, but that leads back to the fact that you cannot show that your version of Christianity is any more god approved than another.

        My actions have consequences, but none of any magical type. It’s hilarious to watch you declare that since your imaginary god is imaginarily “infinite” it has a right to give infinite punishment. Wow, so something that is infinite gets miffed about something that is utterly insignificant to it in context. Good to know! Your very own bible says that hell is place of torture and torment. But please do say your bible is wrong again. I always smile at that. Your poor god, getting so upset over eating shrimp, wearing mixed fiber clothing, fig trees not bearing figs when they are out of season, etc.
        It is not a strawman argument to use the WBC as an example. Again, you seem to have not one clue about what a strawman argument is. Let me explain this again. You all claim to be Christians. None of you can show that those “others” aren’t Christians. You all pick and choose and you all can’t show that any of you have the right answer. So, I am left to define you as you define yourselves. So you are all part of the same group until you can come up with some way to show me that I should believe you and not them. I’m still waiting.

        I quote the bible directly. I am not the one who is saying that I know what the bible says and that it’s not what the words on the page say. I have no “belief” in what the bible says, I know what it says. I am saying that you are a Christian that picks and chooses the bible, and you make up what you want to pretend it “really” says, just like Fred Phelps, Pat Roberston, etc. And oh my, back to trying to shift the burden of proof again. No, KD, you made the claim, you support it. Of course you can’t, and that’s why you try to shift the burden of proof. I can contentedly say that I have not used any strawman arguments. Since I have said so, it is up to you to prove me wrong. It is up do you to show me that I am lying. If you are “rather confident the evidence is there”, then you should have no problem show me it. Cut and paste is easy, KD. But I am certainly not expecting for you to actually support your false claims, your false witnessing.

        You have claimed that you can understand me but I cannot understand you from our interaction here. You have intentionally tried to make me out to be something I am not and when I call you on it, you ignore me and repeat your nonsense. You have tried to claim that I am less than human when you claim you want to humanize me by showing me your video. You have claimed that I am an atheist for reasons I am not. And it’s always great to see someone try to analyze someone psychologically through the internet. I also took some psych courses, KD. I know that analysis takes much more than posts on the internet.

        Your comments said that we cannot know anything. We can know things with 100% certainty, essentially as far as any human can know anything. Just like that ladle of molten steel will kill you without a doubt if you are in it. You claim that you know your god with 100% certainty repeatedly here and in your blog, which is usually what TrueChristians claim while insisting that no one else can know anything with 100% certainty. It’s always a lovely bit of special pleading. I can be 100% certain that your god, as described, does not exist since we have no evidence of it at all. I can also be 100% sure that Allah doesn’t exist, that Mohammed didn’t ride on a magic pony, that people don’t rise from the dead after 3 days, that the dead don’t rise out of their tombs and that no one noticed this. You know how I ‘m sure? Because as you said, we need the “proper evidence” aka evidence that demonstrates the event happened. We have none for your religion’s claims. You can indeed be certain that the apple will reach the ground. If you see an obstacle to it, then you know it won’t reach the ground. You know that it won’t take off in at a right angle a centimeter from the surface you dropped it toward. You also know that it will reach the ground in the same state as you dropped it *if* the parameters do not change. Now, one can fantasize that a tiny space ship filled with aliens will swoop in and catch it and take it away. And we get back to the idea of improbable and impossible. Do you believe that it is likely that this will happen? No? Do you assume the apple will hit? Then you do act like you do know things very well, and only pull out the nonsense about not knowing everything just when you religion comes under attack. As I have said: “I am not determined to believe I am absolutely right. You have failed to show that I am wrong. I may not be 100% right but that does not prevent you, and every other theist, from being 100% wrong about what you claim.”

        I’m waiting for evidence you are right.

        oh and congrats for ignoring my answer about how I support anti-slavery organizations. :)

      • To answer your question, if you were a guy…I would still suggest you spend more time with your spouse.

        As for sex crimes, because of the Internet, has there not been an increase in child pornography? Of solicitation of sex online. Not to mention the access that youth have to porn which is harmful and could be a possible link in cases of more aggressive and physical sex crimes later in life. (Like I said originally it was more of a stretch, but not that’s not to say it’s completely out of left field.)

        As for your anti-slavery comment, I am glad to help with giving you an example of present day slavery and to hear you are an advocate.

        As for psych analysis over the Internet, you’re right it’s not easy to do. That’s why I ran “possible” scenarios to find out more information. And saying, you took a few Psych classes, would be like me saying I took a few calculus courses so now I’m a Mathematician…

        What evidence are you looking for? For me to prove the existence of God? Or to prove that your post and comments have committed logical fallacies? I may not be familiar with the names of what fallacy is being used but I am very aware of a fallacy when I see one. (Although you might want to review what an ad hominem is?, whether your “sexist” remark was intended as a personal attack or an attack at the characteristic of my comments attempting to invalidate them as “sexist remarks”)

        The interesting thing is that I’m not saying your 100% wrong. I do find your tactics a bit offensive…like how often when addressing a comment you address it like you are giving a lecture to a class rather than addressing the person…very disrespectful, but I guess that’s your thing? And I find you raise some good points. Awhile ago you asked why I engage in debate or conversations with atheists, it’s to learn what they believe and why they believe it. If I find someone say something I do not agree I address it. not to “prove” I’m right or win an argument but to become more rounded in understanding people and the world we live in. Also to be able to state my views and opinions so who ever I’m addressing has an opportunity to view a different position on a certain topic. I try to do this respectfully and with tolerance, but I am human with emotions and sometimes my emotions get the better of me.

        I liked your Star Wars argument. It was clever. To play the antagonist, Luke’s motives were not as pure as you claim. He thought Leia was beautiful and it was not until his aunt and uncle were murdered by the Sand People and he had no home that he could go back to that he went to rescue her.

        As for your Queen Elizabeth II, one had better have evidence or be able to point another in the right direction of where to find the evidence. If you were to explain evolution to someone, you could provide the information yourself or you could provide someone where to look; a book, a blog post, or a website that has accurate information about it.

        Now you are saying you are quoting the Bible at exactly what it says, that is literal. Didn’t I mention something about atheists using the literal interpretation claim? Look into the etymological fallacy…historical fallacy…and presentism.

        I’m sure you want to be able to say I’m 100% wrong in my arguments against you. I could be 100% wrong about something like saying the Pittsburg Penguins won the 1976 World Series of Poker…I’ll readily admit that I’ve made grammatical errors, committed logical fallacies, etc…but I have not been 100% wrong about everything or times were I made an error was I 100% wrong. And there have been things that I have been right about.

        As for you claim of knowing God…I find this peculiar. And you might need to clarify what you actually mean? It seems like it might be a hasty generalization of what I or possibly other Christians believe about God?

        I also took your advice and started looking at lists of logical fallacies and see a great many of them on both sides…Again, I don’t want to take the time to point them out and believe you intelligent enough to find them without me having to “show you.” Like I said, the evidence is in the comments. And like you said, simply making an informal fallacy does not render the argument completely invalid, it may just need clarification or refining.

        I find your post also might fit under circular reasoning. another fallacy to look into about burden of proof: onus probandi.

        Finally, Richard Swineburne wrote “Is there a God?” and it addresses the omniscience/omnipotent aspect of God that you question in the first chapter.

      • I see, if I were a guy you’d still suggest that I spend time with my spouse. But I guess men can’t have children? They of course can’t physically bear them but they can bear responsibility for them. There lays the crux of your apparent sexism, KD. It appears again that you think that having children would make me different somehow. And that is the old nonsense of how women need to have children to be real people.

        Please provide evidence of your claim that there is an increase in child pornography and sex solicitation online. You seem to mistake asking questions for showing actual evidence. You also claim that porn is “harmful”. Please do show how it is and how one can verify this claim. You also make the slippery slope argument that porn “could be a possible link in cases of more aggressive and physical sex crimes later in life. Of course, you again have no evidence for this. You simply want to make claims of causation and correlation and have no evidence to support either.

        It’s great fun to watch you change your tune when it comes to asking me if I supported anti-slavery groups. You asked the questions and it seems to again try to accuse me of being less than humane. Now, that I have shown your assumptions to be wrong, you want to take responsibility for my actions. Your example was nothing I did not know about before, and again, we see that your religion does not speak out against slavery at all. Indeed, it advocates sex slavery, a cause that seems important to you.

        Yep, you tried to run “possible scenarios” to try to get an answer you wanted. Nothing new there, just fishing for evidence that you are right. It seems pretty evident that you are not a psychiatrist or a psychologist, KD. Or even a social worker. A Bachelor in General Studies in Psychology *is* taking a few classes in the subject, as well as whatever else you’d like to take, from my research on the subject on the ‘net. It is not a BA in Psych nor a BS in Psych.

        I’ve already told you the evidence I ‘m looking for, KD. But nice try to again try to avoid answering. Nothing surprising about that at all. I am looking for you to show that you version of Christianity is the true one as you have claimed. I am looking for you to support your false claims about me, including showing where I have made logical fallacies in my posts. You have claimed that I have used certain logical fallacies and now we see you trying to excuse your ineptitude by claiming that you now are not “familiar” with the actual names of the logical fallacies, when you have used those terms in your accusations.

        For all your claims of “seeing” fallacies, you have not produced a single one as evidence against me. And of course, you can’t actually show I’m wrong about an ad hominem argument. No, KD, you just try to claim I did and cannot show this. An ad hominem argument is not simply a personal attack. It is using a personal attack in order to disregard the arguments offered by an opponent. It seems that again you try to redefine words to excuse your ignorance and again fail. But if you really think that the remark that your telling me to spend more time with my husband and have children to be happy can be interpreted as a sexist remark is an ad homimen attack, be my guest. Be sure to show your work. Show me how I attacked the characteristics of your comments by noting that your words to me appear as a sexist remark. And since I have supported my claim on why it appears sexist, show me how it is an unwarranted personal attack and not simply the truth.

        You have said that I am 100% wrong, KD. You have said that you know your god exists and that I am wrong when I say that it doesn’t and provide evidence that it doesn’t.

        Oh darn, you find my tactics “offensive”. I’m sure you do when you are shown to be wrong. How dare I show KD to be wrong and offend him by doing so. And again, why should I be respectful to you? You’ve lied about me, KD. You chose to do that, and that means that any respect is gone. Considering how you have directly claimed that you pick and choose what parts of my posts to pay attention to and ignore, I have no problem in addressing the audience rather than you.

        You do try to claim you are right and you do write to win an argument. I have cited your own words, KD. You claim that others are wrong, that they “misuse” the bible, etc. Saying someone isn’t right is saying that they are wrong. Being able to state your views and opinions is stating how you think you are right and others are wrong. One can tell others that they are wrong respectfully, but telling lies about them isn’t respectful at all. You now seem to want to now create an excuse that it’s your emotions that cause you to fail so badly. No, KD, I don’t buy that. I have called you out on your actions repeatedly and you keep doing them. If this was just a matter of passion at the moment, I might agree with you. As it is, you’ve had enough time to consider what you write.

        I’m pleased you thought my star wars argument was clever. I know that luke’s motives weren’t “pure”. That wasn’t the point of the discussion. I do see that you’ve ignored the rest of my points and questions about your example of firefighters. Oh, and Luke’s aunt and uncle weren’t murdered by the Sand People. They were killed by stormtroopers.

        One indeed better have evidence that Queen Elizabeth is a reptiloid. Now, where is that evidence of your god? Can you point me to the evidence? I can indeed point others to evidence for the theory of evolution. I can point to fossils and how they all go from simple to complex. I can point to modern day examples of natural selection and adaptation. Can you show me that your god and only your god is the one that is the “creator”? Can you tell me that your version of the creation myth is the right one and not the literal one that so many of your fellow TrueChristians claim is true? Earlier you asked me what evidence do I want. Well, here you go. I want evidence that shows me that your nonsense is correct and that no one else’s is. I’ve asked this repeatedly, KD. I’ll keep asking it and you can keep trying to ignore me. A website is not evidence. Someone’s unsupported opinion is not evidence.

        I do quote the bible as exactly what it says. You have not been able to show that your interpretation of what it supposedly “really” means is any better than the literal words or the interpretations of other TrueChristians. You all use your magic decoder rings to come up with different claims on what is to be taken literally and what is to be taken metaphorically. Again, here’s an example. There is no reason to assume that you can take the resurrection literally and not take the creation story literally.

        Let’s see, what can I find about the etymological fallacy. It’s “The etymological fallacy is a genetic fallacy that holds, erroneously, that the present-day meaning of a word or phrase should necessarily be similar to its historical meaning”. Yep, that’s a good fallacy and it shows that your bible is not the magical truth you claim it to be, since we know words change in meaning and TrueChristians reassign meaning constantly. I’ve already addressed this problem with your bible, KD. You want to claim that the words meant something different back then, but you go about insisting that they means something different everytime you reinterpret them.

        I have no problem in saying that words change meaning over time. Indeed, that is largely my point, the words are the words and it is only TrueChristians who insist that they mean something different. If a book is said to be from a supernatural source, why would this be the case, KD? Or isn’t the bible supernatural in source, just a human creation? The fact that you seem to be unwilling to discuss this point indicates to me that you have no answer on why your supposedly omninpotent, omniscient god cannot make itself clear to everyone and must depend on humans to interpret it and reinterpret it for every generation, changing what this supposedly unchanging being “really” means.

        You have yet to show that any of your arguments against me are true in the least, much less 100% true. You have indeed committed logical fallacies, no surprise there since I’ve been the one to point them out. What have you been right about, KD? Your god’s existence? No evidence for that. Your claim that no one except you uses the bible correctly? Again,no evidence for that at all. That I’ve used logical fallacies? No evidence for that either despite me asking repeatedly for it and you saying that I “just don’t see” them.

        Christians claim to know their god and know what it “really” wants. You are sure that your version of this god is full of unconditional love and acceptance because that is what you’ve said. You all claim that you know this god because you think your version is the only correct one. You are sure that your interpretation is the only correct one. You’ve claimed that my interpretation is wrong, KD, that it’s too literal, that it’s not agreeing with the metaphors you think it has. That means you think yours is right. Is this clear enough on what I mean by saying Christians claim to know their god but want to claim that no one else can know something that well? I am curious to see if you claim you don’t know what your god wants or that you know only partially, which would beg the question, how do you know even that much?

        I’m glad that you are finally looking at information on logical fallacies. And you of course now can’t take the time to point them out. Just like before, KD, when you claimed you had no time to do so, but have been posting these lovely long posts about everything else. I’m quite intelligent KD, and that intelligence is what tells me that you are a liar and cannot actually support your accusations. My intelligence is what tells me that you are wrong and there are no logical fallacies. So thanks for the “compliment” and know that I see it as it is, just one more excuse

        If you want to claim I am using circular reasoning, support your claim As it is, you are again throwing shit at the wall hoping that it will stick by making more unfounded claims. You make the claim, you support it. Queen Elizabeth is a reptiloid! Trust me and don’t’ expect me to actually show evidence. Indeed, which is it, KD? Is it “As for your Queen Elizabeth II, one had better have evidence or be able to point another in the right direction of where to find the evidence” or is it “I don’t have to provide evidence of my claims.” And onus probandi, that’s Latin for “burden of proof”. It’s not a fallacy. Here are some links about it: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/onus%20probandi http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/onus+probandi http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophic_burden_of_proof “Michalos, Alex (1969). Principles of Logic. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall. p. 370. “usually one who makes an assertion must assume the responsibility of defending it. If this responsibility or burden of proof is shifted to a critic, the fallacy of appealing to ignorance is committed.”

        Richard Swineburne did write “Is there a God?” And like many apologetic books, it does address the problem of an omniscient/omnipotent god. I do enjoy his version since he, like so many TrueChristians, does his best to conveniently depower this god. The all-powerful and all-knowing god in the bible is inconvenient so those words simply must not be true, and the magic decoder ring comes out again so one can “carefully understand” this god, aka my intepretation is the right one and all others aren’t, don’t bother asking for evidence. He says that this god is described as having true free will, but then goes into the usual TrueChristian nonsense about how omnipotent and omniscient don’t “really” meant all-powerful and all-knowing. This god becomes only kinda all powerful and all knowing, and that does become a lovely oxymoron, like something being kinda sterile or kinda pregnant. This god now must makes sense to humans or it cannot exist. Swineburne decides that this god can’t know the future because it’s not “logical’ but golly this god can make prophecies? And the the bible says directly this god does future repeatedly. Again, we see Christians disagreeing on what their god is, what their god can do, if we have free will or not, and having no evidence to support their claims.

        At least Swineburne does admit that his claims are not the usual Christian or Jewish ones. He goes on to use very old and very bad arguments to claim that his god exists. God is supposedly a simple answer so God must exist? Well, that’s nice if you can show that it’s the Christian god and Swineburne is indeed only talking about that one. I personally find the concept of god and gods to be quite complicated. Which god? How do you tell? Which story is right? None have to be right but all could be wrong. Alas for Swineburne, Ockham’s razor isn’t always correct though he certainly tries to pretend it is.

        Then he goes onto try to claim that since science doesn’t know everything, therefore God must exist. “These are phenomena clearly too big for science to explain.” Yeesh. And this is supposedly “one of the most distinguished philosophers of religion today”. There is no scientific reasoning in his book contrary to what the blurb claims. Scientific reasoning is from observation and evidence. Claiming that a being that has no evidence for it, no evidence for any actions and no evidence for a need for it is not relying on the scientific method. It’s also great to watch him claim that it can only be the Christian god, and not any others. Wow. He’s also sure that there is a soul, and of course cannot show that to be true. If there is a soul, then why does harm to the physical body change people? Or are souls something else than *us* and what we are now isn’t what we’ll be in some “heaven”? I don’t know if you’ve actually read this book, KD, but Swineburne’s god is not yours.

      • You’re right I do have a general studies degree, from one of the top programs in the country that offers BGS degrees. I had a choice, I could finish a B.S. in Psychology and take 6 additional non-psych courses and 3 psych courses that were required for it or take 2 non-psych courses and 1 psych course to finish with a BGS…since I had taken time off from school to start a family and allow my wife to finish her degree. And we just had our second child, I choose the less expensive and less time consuming option. Of which, the total number of fewer Psych courses that I took was 2 (30 vs 36 credit hours). The BGS also required that I take a minimum of 15 credit hours in two other fields of study, like Math, Spanish, History, or any combination you can think of (which for the B.S. no other field was required to have more that 12 credit hours and that was a foreign language requirement).

        and one of the two psych courses was a research course. I had no desire to pursue a career in Psychology so not having to take the research course was kind of a bonus. I also never claimed that I was a psychiatrist or psychologist, the whole point of your argument was to “discredit” me…I assure you that being ignorant of what the requirement difference was between a B.S. and a B.G.S. is a poor attempt at it on your part. Like I said, the line of questions was to better understand you as a person…and also work on my deductive reasoning (mind you I don’t mind failing as I need practice to learn) There rarely ever is a sole reason someone does something.

        As for your comment about having children, I apologize for having overlooked this. The answer again is if you were a guy and made the same comments you’ve made regarding having children…I would suggest having some of your own so you can find out for yourself what others have told you or claimed about having children. Don’t try and make an argument from silence Vel.

        Anyways, since I told you repeatedly that I’m not here to debate proving god exists to you…something you’ve apparently missed time and time again…I find your inability to see this perplexing. You seem to want to focus on any topic that doesn’t actually address issues with your post where you attempt to prove “all religion” is wrong, which the argument in your post has failed on many levels. I’m sure you’ve realized this by now and that’s why you keep trying to change the subject to something else. You seem to be the one who is desperate. And seem to prove some of the comments I’ve made about you and some other atheists I’ve encountered online.

        I find you some what intelligent. But the fact that you find no logical fallacies in your post or comments looks poorly on your intelligence. Or in the least your critical reasoning. I’m sure you believe yourself to be more intelligent than me, and perhaps you are. But you sure don’t act like it.

      • You may indeed have a GS degree in “one of the top programs in the country that offers
        BGS degrees”. And that means very little, since it could be from anywhere from Drexel to some online only school. I am not saying that the BGS is worthless, but it does not have the focus of a BS or BA in a field. As you have demonstrated, it is not as thorough. And it was your choice to decide to have a family and children and not to finish a BS. I have seen the same choice in my own family, where my sister in law decided to have children rather than taking 2 more courses to finish her masters in speech path and then not being able to use that degree to at least reduce the debt that she incurred. Everyone who gets a degree has to take courses in fields other than their major, so your claims are nothing different than what I had to do.

        It’s interesting that you had no desire to pursue a career in something that you focused on in your BGS. I had plenty of research courses, again nothing new or surprising in your degree or classses. My profs, one in particular Dr. Ernisee, was all about research and writing. We had to do our own work, and our own research. One of Dr. E’s infamous tendencies was to give us a list of 20 essay topics and then say he would pick three for our midterm or final, as the case may be. I know what a BS and a BGS require and again your claims of ignorance are hilarious.

        The line of question were indeed very likely intended for you to try to better understand me as a person and you were only looking for the person you needed to me to be. Otherwise, the questions would not have been so sad at their attempts at getting a certain answer. Watching your questions was like watching someone who thinks they are being funny asking “have you stopped beating your wife yet?” To a question, they were all attempts at getting an answer you needed to create your ideal inhuman atheist and to pretend your version of Christianity was above reproach. Who could speak against unconditional love and acceptance? Well, as you saw, an atheist that knows that your religion is anything but such things.

        Ah, now it’s also for you to work on your deductive reasoning. As you’ve said, people rarely every have a sole reason for doing something, but every guess you’ve made about me requires you to assume such a bit of nonsense. You’ve failed on *every* accusation you’ve made about me, having no evidence to show your claims true. And that is more than just failing, that is showing that you have no clue on what deductive reasoning actually is. Your premises have been wrong e.g. claiming that I have used logical fallacies. You have no evidence to support your premises. Thus your conclusions cannot be right, per deductive reasoning.

        Oh and again you suggest having children so I can “find out for myself” what others have told me about children and having them. Sorry, again I have no need to do this since I can see for my own eyes that having children does not change people. KD, I have shown you instance after instance where people kill their own children, abused them, abandoned them, etc. Per your claim, if having children changed people this would be impossible. It, so very sadly, is not the case. First, I am not making an argument from silence and you again show that you evidently know nothing about what actual logical fallacies are by your repeated mistaken invoking them when they are not in evidence. I know that having children does not change someone, and that is based on plenty of evidence. No silence at all. Second, again, you make the mistake by assuming an argument from silence always fails. It does not. I know that TrueChristians are desperate to hope this is the case since the argument from silence is a very strong argument against their imaginary friend. But alas, it is not true. Now is about the time for you to complain about wiki entries.

        Sorry, KD, but telling someone that they are wrong and you are right is an attempt to make a positive claim and you have offered your arguments. That’s a debate, KD, no matter how many times you want to try to redefine a word. You have claimed your god exists, KD. I have shown how that fails and I am definitely certain you would not want to actually try to prove your god exists. You’ve done all you can to insist that you don’t want to debate, and I know this. You want to present your nonsense with no rebuttal, so you want to pretend that I’ve offered nothing against your nonsense. There’s nothing “perplexing” about that at all.

        Again, you make one more false claim about me and of course present not one scrap of evidence to support your claim. Show me this attempt to focus on any topic that doesn’t actually address issues with my post. You have yet to show that any religion is right at all, KD, so my claim that all religions are wrong and my evidence supporting such a claim still stands. More claims that my arguments “fail on many levels” but where is the evidence of this KD? Let me guess, with the evidence that I have used logical fallacies in my posts? Since you have yet to show that evidence, claiming that you have no time and that if I just were smart enough I’d agree with you (“I also took your advice and started looking at lists of logical fallacies and see a great many of them on both sides…Again, I don’t want to take the time to point them out and believe you intelligent enough to find them without me having to “show you.” Like I said, the evidence is in the comments.”), your claims fail again.

        No, dear KD, I have not “realized” anything you have said to be true. It’s so cute to watch you insist that just as soon as I’m smart enough, I’ll realize that my arguments have “failed on many levels”. Of course, no evidence from you showing this, we only have you implying that only smart people agree with KD. No, I’ve not changed the subject. But again, KD, if you can show where I’ve tried to do that, I’d be happy to acknowledge it. But I rather suspect that you have no more evidence for this than those mysterious logical fallacies, those failures on “many levels”, etc. Many many vague baseless claims and not one actual cut and paste showing me doing any of it.

        Please do show me that I’m “desperate” too, KD. And also show me how anything I’ve said “proves some of the comments” you’ve made. How about one that shows that atheists all believe the same things and have a “religion”? You know, the claim you’ve made right off and *still* haven’t been able to support?

        Aw, KD finds me “somewhat intelligent”. Alright! That is the best thing you could have said, KD. Yep, I get the bonus of having you saying outright that the only way I could possibly be really intelligent is by agreeing with you. No evidence that my critical reasoning is faulty, just more baseless claims. No cut and pastes, nothing. KD, tell me how I can act like I’m intelligent. Oooh, maybe agreeing with you? :) Thanks, KD. It would be hard for it to be better than this.

      • P.S. Just an observation and not necessary for a response: Probably the most amusing thing is that you’re claiming I’m trying to paint you as an “ideal atheist” and making baseless claims to do it, which the evidence is contrary. AND you’re making baseless claims about my comments and what “TrueChristians” believe to make me into your “negative view” of religion and belief in god.

        The fact that the evidence shows that you are doing exactly what you are claiming I am doing is almost too much. And that the evidence supports my claims only makes it worse.

        You’re like Tiger Woods if he tried telling Elin that he didn’t cheat on her and he wants to get back together with her.

      • I am always pleased when you insist that no response is necessary. That tells me that one definitely is necessary. I wonder, do you really believe I’d put up with more false claims about me just because you say that I shouldn’t respond to those claims? Silly KD. :)

        Again, we have more baseless claims from you about me. Please do show me a claim of mine that is baseless, KD, and support your position with evidence. You see, KD, simply repeating what I have said as an attempt to attack me doesn’t quite work for you since I do cite examples when I make claims. You do not.

        Show me this “evidence” you claim is there. Still waiting. Show me how this evidence, that you cannot evidently show since we seen none again, makes “it worse”. Or will your response again be that you have no time to do so and if I were just intelligent enough, I’d agree with you?

        And oh, what a lovely failed analogy. Hmmm, what you seem to be saying is that I am a liar since you are trying to compare me to someone who has lied, Tiger Woods. Do show us where I have lied, KD. Since you have made the claim, support it. Or is this just you continuing to bear false witness against me? I have no problem with that. You can make false claims again and again. I do take great delight watching a Christian show me repeatedly that his religion fails.

      • Let me make another observation and comparison.

        When you speak out against something you believe is wrong, it will be viewed like Malcolm X, the Black Panthers, Westboro Baptist, etc.

        When you stand up for what you believe is right, it will be viewed like Martin Luther King Jr, Rosa Parks, or Abraham Lincoln, etc.

        I do encourage you to review our entire conversation. To take a moment and look at it objectively rather than subjectively. Once you’ve done it once, do it again. Take another moment, collect your thoughts removing all preconceived notions of what you are about to read and read it again. And again, and maybe one more time. Don’t look at it like a debate or an argument that you’re trying to win. Look at it like it’s a conversation. Read what is being said without presupposing what is meant. Now after you have done this about 20 times, re-reading, studying, looking at it through KD’s eyes, sit and think through it rather than responding to it; then come back and tell me what you found. Take your time on this. If it helps, consider it research for an essay: Vel’s encounter with an incorrigible theist…stop arguing and trying to prove something and start thinking.

        Meditate on what KD is trying to say not what you believe all TrueChristians believe. You might have questions, don’t be afraid to ask. I’m here to clarify what was meant by something I said, I don’t want you to have a wrong impression about what was meant.

      • I’ll take care of your longer post in a bit. These observations and comparisons are just great, KD.

        I do love your increasing assurance that you and only you are right. Shucks, since KD declares that my posts will be viewed by Malcolm X, the Black Panthers, the WBC, it will come true! Quite a lovely prophecy, KD. I’m impressed.

        I’m more than happy to be compared with Malcolm X and the Black Panthers. It seems that you think that they had nothing to complain about back in the 50s and 60s. Why, they should have just accepted being considered less than human and/or second class citizens who had to ride in the back of the bus and not sit with those good white people. Alas, it seems that you forget that Dr. King and Ms. Parks were speaking and acting against the same things that Malcolm X and the Black Panthers did. Same with President Lincoln, he did something about the injustice he saw.

        It’s rather disgusting that you want to pile all of them with the vermin at the Westboro Baptists but please continue to do so. Your actions are wonderful examples of what a TrueChristian does. If one actually looks at the Christian bible, it does say that accepting homosexuals will cause harm to those who accept them. It seems that Fred Phelps et al are more Christian than you, KD. Of course, again we can see that Christians don’t agree on what their god “really” wants or what their bible “really” says. You all claim to be the only “right” ones and have yet to show that your god exists and supports only your interpretation.

        I stand up for what I believe is right *and* I stand up against those things I believe are wrong. I don’t listen to those who say sit down and shut up, don’t rock the boat.

        I have reviewed our entire conversation, KD. We see a TrueChristian who has made baseless claims again and again. When I have asked for evidence to support such claims, we have you claim that you don’t have time and if I were “intelligent”, I’d see what you claim is there. Of course, when I ask again, you can’t show me those things that are supposedly so “obvious.”

        Now we have you claim that only you are looking at our discussion “objectively” and of course can’t support that claim either. You make again the same tired old claim that if I just read it again and again, I simply *must* come to the same conclusions as you. Alas, KD, that hasn’t happened yet and will not. I’m guessing that you’ve been praying really hard to make this happen. I always hear the nonsense “I will pray that God will show you the way and open your heart” or some such similar nonsense. And your prayers have failed, just like the prayers of every other theist. It’s the same nonsense claimed when a Christian wants to claim that everyone will agree with them on what the bible “really” means as long as they “collect their thoughts”, “remove all preconceived notions”, “look at it objectively”, look at it as something it isn’t, etc. Sorry, KD, our discussion is a debate and an argument, just like your bible is a compilation of stories from people a couple of thousand years ago who did not have the same magic decoder ring as you do now.

        It’s always so cute to watch you lie again and try to claim that I haven’t “really” thought about what I have written, that if I only honestly did this, I’d agree with you.

        This has been Vel’s encounter with just another theist who makes baseless claims and who insists that he’s the only right one, that Vel can’t possible be honest, thoughtful, objective, taking time, etc. All of your claims above are dependent on your lies about me, KD. You have yet to show me dishonest, less than thoughtful, subjective, etc. You only pretend I am and hope others believe you. KD, all of the time in the world will make your nonsense no more “right”. All you appear to be doing is just trying to delay the inevitable. If I would reread our discussion 20 times and still say you are full of nonsense, I suspect it would then be a request to read it a 50 times, a 100 times, a thousand times, unto the heat death of the universe just so you could claim that I might “someday” agree with you.

        What KD has been trying to say is that he’s right and everyone else is wrong, including other Christians. I know many, if not all, of the variants of what TrueChristians claim to believe. All of it has failed and none of you can show you are any more right than your fellows or anyone else. I am sure you really wish I would stop showing you wrong. Not going to happen. And I do that while thinking, so your attempt to claim I am not thinking fails again. It’s always great to see you to try to define “thinking” as those that agree with you.

        It’s hysterical that you now encourage me to ask questions “You might have questions, don’t be afraid to ask. I’m here to clarify what was meant by something I said, I don’t want you to have a wrong impression about what was meant.” It’s so great to watch you try to rewrite history in a written and recorded medium here in my blog. You now appear to be trying to pretend I haven’t asked questions and that I haven’t asked for evidence. I have done so repeatedly and most of the time you’ve ignored those questions (you indeed claimed that you intentionally have ignored them “In case you were still wondering, I’m ignoring all of you requests.”

      • I’m not criticizing you for your choice, KD. I am telling you that your claims about your experience in Psychology aren’t impressive and your attempts at analyzing someone through the internet are nothing unique nor are they correct. You have not demonstrated that you know more than people with a BA or BS in psychology (“I assure you, with my degree I know more about Psychology than people who have a BS or BA in the field.”) , and that’s the usual exaggeration I would expect from you. It’s always amazing on how suddenly you are sure that you know more and better than people who have studied more than you or have studied subjects longer than you. I’ve looked at UNO and I know that your claim is more than a bit silly. And golly, you took a prob and stats course. Yep, many college grads do that, including me. I took mine from the Mathematics Department, whoop-de-doo. I switched majors too, from biology, to psych, to library science and finally geology. Had a lot of credits that weren’t accepted in the major I ended up with. Oh well. And nice trying to claim I used the moving the goalposts fallacy. Care to show me how? Oh yes, you are “ignoring” my requests.

        A BGS degree is a creation that allows more disparate credits to count for a degree. So yes, I do think they can be less difficult than BA/BS.

        And again, we have you claiming that I have “misquoted” you. Show me where, KD. I do know that you are certainly not “big” on research. It is a pain when the research doesn’t support you, isn’t it? Far “too structured” if you can’t change definitions and make baseless claims. It’s far too cramping when someone actually expects you to have evidence for your claims, eh? 

        “When exactly did I “claim having children would change you?” I did no such thing.”

        Seems like someone needs to read and re-read our discussion.  Here you are claiming that I am “naïve” to think one doesn’t change when one has children:

        “On not changing when you have children…it’s naive to think you won’t. It’s also one of those arguments from ignorance.” http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/not-so-polite-dinner-conversation-again-why-speak-out/#comment-2369

        Nice attempt to revise history but like most attempts at that, it has failed. I do agree, some things in life it is better to experience one’s self.
        And knowing that people do not change when they have children is one of those things I know from experience with those people who do not change.

        I have no idea what the heck you mean that my supposed argument from silence came from “your comment about not mentioning the part about if you were a guy I’d tell you to spend time with your spouse but not to become a parent”. So, here I can request clarification like you say I should. Please proceed to clarify. Or will you ignore this request too?

        KD, I’ve always known you were a guy. And, yes, I’d find the same silly recommendations that I should spend more time with my spouse and have children just as ridiculously sexist from a woman. You think women can’t be sexist and anti-femist? Yes, they can, especially Christian ones. Phyllis Schlafly is a great sexist twit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phyllis_Schlafly .

        My conscience is quite fine. Yours?

        Alas, KD, yes you do have to show evidence to prove your claims. No wonder you find actual research so pesky. Again, we see more baseless claims from you that I somehow have used “bogus claims”. Of course, you are unable to show any. I’ve already shown you that you used the terms unconditional love and acceptance. Oh and now it’s my fault that I may have used them before you? Tsk, KD is unable to use words on his own. Alas, the claim is false as usual.

        ““If I spread a message of unconditional love and acceptance, how is this wrong or bad?”
        “If I did not unconditionally accept or love you, my words would be negative towards your beliefs, practices, and attitudes.” http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/not-so-polite-dinner-conversation-again-why-speak-out/#comment-2369
        “Guess what. I accept you even though I believe you are wrong. I question what you believe and state what I believe that differs from you. You believe respect must be earned, I believe respect should be given. I do not reject your ideas, beliefs, practices, or attitudes. This however does not mean I cannot contest them. The reason I contest them, is not to prove I am right or you are wrong, because I understand that I could be wrong and you could be right. This is how I view unconditional acceptance.”
        ““You also misrepresent my comments of unconditional love and acceptance. Like my invitation to view the video of my daughter…I invited unconditionally the opportunity to meet my family on a more personal level.””
        “God loves and accepts everyone” is this not unconditional love? I know it does not say this exactly but how do you define unconditional love if not this way? Does your god supposedly love and accept everyone or not?
        “I will teach them to love others, even when they disagree. I will teach them not to condemn anyone, not to judge, not to ardently believe they are always right and someone else is wrong.” http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/not-so-polite-dinner-conversation-again-why-speak-out/#comment-2328 Where are your conditions here, KD? Is this not unconditional love when you say love no matter what, do not condemn no matter what? Do not judge no matter what? You say you are trying tofollow in the footsteps of your suppsoed savior, is this not how you are doing it?

        All you seem to be doing is trying to claim you didn’t say “exactly” something, when you did say it in another version. You did use the word uncondtionally correctly, KD, without my prompting, so trying to blame me for your using the word and knowing how to use the word is amusing. ““You also misrepresent my comments of unconditional love and acceptance. Like my invitation to view the video of my daughter…I invited unconditionally the opportunity to meet my family on a more personal level.””

        Thanks for showing me my own quote ““You have yet to show that any religion is right at all, KD, so my claim that all religions are wrong and my evidence supporting such a claim still stands”. So what about this? Where is the evidence to show that any religion is right at all? My claims that all religions are wrong, and the evidence I have presented for them still stands since you have yet to show anything to refute that evidence. No evidence for your side and no evidence against the evidence that supports my side.

        I have also not shifted the burden of proof. The claim “God exists and my way of knowing it is right.” Is the basic theist claim. I have shown that there is no evidence that your god exists, that there is positive evidence that events that are not the events in your bible happened. You indeed must show a religion right to show that my claim that all religions are wrong. We need one instance that I am wrong and my evidence fails. Let me put this another way. There is a claim made that no humans can survive in space without a space suit. All evidence supports this. If the claim is made “yes humans can survive in space without a space suit” then we need at least one instance to show that this is true against all of the evidence that says it is not.

        You have to show that my claim is illogical, not just claim that it is. It is indeed your burden of proof to show that illogic, just as it is your burden to show that your god exists, that your interpretation of your god/bible is the only true one, etc. You have made the positive claim “X is this way”. I have made the claim that all religions are wrong and I have supported that claim with evidence. All religions claims fail. All religions claim to have the truth but cannot show that some invisible being exists or approves of them. Can you show me my claims are illogical? Can you show those logical fallacies you claim I use? At this moment, the answer to that is evidently “no”.

        This is agreat quote from you. While it’s not false, it does ignore quite a bit and misrepresents many aspects of religion (isn’t that considered a straw man argument?).” So, we have evidence that is true, e.g. “not false” on my side. You claim that I have ignored “quite a bit” and have misrepresented “many aspects of religion”. What have I supposedly ignored, KD? What have I misrepresented about religion? Again, a strawman argument is defined here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man Now that we know what we’re talking about, surely you can show how your claim is true. You have claimed that I only focus on the negative examples of religion and how it fails. Why yes, I do, since we have no positive examples of when religion promises work. You seem to claim that there are positive examples. And I have already said that religion has had some benefits “It is my opinion that religion may have served some purpose, but, like tribalism, does no longer. We do not need a small group of people who will keep us from being eaten by tigers because they believe that their magical spells/prayers will keep the tiger away. We also do not need to think that the “other” is always a threat, something that tribalism and religion are based on.” The fact that there were very likely benefits to religion does not mean that it is wrong.

        KD, you’ve said that I would have grown up to be a Muslim in Iran, not an atheist, but you claim that everything is a choice *and* claim that your god is changeless. Is it a choice or not? If one only becomes religious from one’s culture, that is evidence that there is no magical being or “eternal truth”. If we can change our minds after being inculcated by culture, this means we have seen problems in the claims of magic and truth. We have used our intellects to look at evidence and changed our minds. We may accept another false claim in the place of a prior one that we now believe false, but that doesn’t make either of them right. Not unless we have evidence that they are.

        You then claim that my beliefs etc “come from a nation that is predominantly Christian”. Again the question to be asked is “what do you mean by Christian? Roman Catholicism, WBC, Jehovah’s Witnesses? I know full well that all of those sects and more do not agree so how can I get anything uniform from them? The majority of what I find valuable and worthwhile are not Christian ideals. You see, KD, the bible has nothing of democracy, of freedom for all, etc in it. We are back to the fact that your bible fails to *ever* speak against slavery( when is selling your daughter *ever* a good thing?). All we have from the bible is obey whoever is in charge, no matter what (would you automatically obey a command to kill your child? The bible say to do so.). I did not learn from Christians, I learned from Americans.

        I wonder, how does one “act” intelligently? Oh and the more I respond, you claim that I sound “less intelligent”. Must be all of that showing you are wrong again. That would tend to make me “less intelligent” to someone who was sure that only those who agree with them are intelligent. It is very nice to see the classic defense of trying to get an opponent to sit down and shut up to win an argument.

        You did say that if I disagree with you I am not intelligent. I do get so tired of TrueChristiansn who think they can be clever if they can claim that they “never said” the exact words. Here’s what you said “I also took your advice and started looking at lists of logical fallacies and see a great many of them on both sides…Again, I don’t want to take the time to point them out and believe you intelligent enough to find them without me having to “show you.” Like I said, the evidence is in the comments.”),”Since I have not found them, am I not intelligent? Here you can “clarify” again, KD. What did you mean, if not claiming that only the intelligent can find your supposed fallacies that you cannot show?

        I am indeed knowledgeable and intelligent. And hilarious, we have again another sentence quite similar to the one cited above: “I’m sure you can think of my ways that you can demonstrate intelligence without me having to provide them for you.” Ah, but if I can’t, then I am not intelligent as you try to imply. I have shown my intelligence, by taking your claims, demonstrating the arguments against them, doing the research to do so, etc. That demonstrates “the ability to learn and understand things”. Now, I ask you, do you disagree?
        I did not have the premise that theists and religions were only negative. I said that served a purpose and that this purpose was over, that the positive values of religion could be gotten other places without the negative nonsense that religion teaches. I’ll quote myself “ It seems that the negative effects always outweigh any supposed benefit that religion can bring.” And “But our intellects can override those base urges and our humanity takes care of the rest, since humans can be demonstrated not to *need* religion. In my observations, religion is thought to fulfill a lot of wants, the want to believe that we have some knowledge of how the universe works, that something big and powerful cares for us and that this being will also do our bidding. Humans love to believe that they know everything and that other humans hold them in esteem. But those beliefs are wrong and can be harmful, for instance doing something stupid, like denying medical care to your children because you think your imaginary friend will heal the child. If people are taught that religion and its promises and claims are false, which they are, people will cease to place value in religion when they see it does not fulfill any wants at all. Science doesn’t promise what it doesn’t give, like religion consistently does.”

        So you have addressed a premise that was not mine. I’ve told you this before. You also are showing again that you have an ideal of unconditional love and acceptance. “Let’s explore this a bit more. You find that it is okay for you to be intolerant or disrespectful towards certain groups or people who do not agree with you, but how do you feel when they are intolerant or disrespectful towards you?”

        So, again it seems you have no conditions on your acceptance and respect for others. If someone is intolerant of what I find important, then I know that they are not worth respect. If they are disrespectful toward me because of what I find important, I know that they are not decent humane people. I am not hurt by their opinions at all. Their opinion is just that, and backed by baseless claims.

        You ask what I require of someone or something to earn my respect. I require them to treat others equally. I require them to think critically. I require them not to tell lies. I find my respect worthy to be earned because of those requirements. If you don’t require those things, KD, why is your respect worth anything?

        I am not “very ignorant” of what you believe. Unless your posts and your blog are utterly false. Are they? Sometimes I do have to admit that I think you must be a Poe, but that’s not the way to bet. And hilarious, another theist trying to claim that the poor atheist has no idea what she actually believes and thinks. I do wonder, how do you think you know what I think better than I do? Oh yes, must be that really accurate internet analysis. I may indeed believe something that are not true. That’s why I always look for the evidence and facts.

        Time is not the “truest test of what is true.” That doesn’t even make any sense. How can the passage of time test if something is true? Now, having time to find evidence can make the case for something to be true. Let’s consider your religion. We’ve had claims that it is true and that the events in it are real. It’s been how long now since people have been looking and not finding anything to support your claims? Over two thousand years evidently. And still nothing. No evidence for this god as the “Creator”. No evidence for any of the essential events. No evidence of the supposedly grand kingdoms of David and Solomon. We have no evidence of other religions either, just like yours. No evidence of the nonsense from the Qu’ran. Nothing supporting the claims of celestial wars from the Hindu myths, etc. We have claims about every 50 years or so that your god is coming back “real soon now”, and they all fail, despite the claim of your bible that this savior will be back within a generation. The claim of the JWs that JC came back but was “invisible” is one of the classics. How much longer do you think your religion can last if there is nothing supporting it? Several thousand years like the ancient Egyptian pantheon? A few years like the People’s Church? The various sects of Christianity that have come and gone? In case you didn’t notice, here are more questions that you’ve asked for.

        edit: I’ve redacted the info about what Christian sect I was raised in. it might have gotten out before I removed it but I do want to see what KD’s “deductive reasoning” was to call me a Roman Catholic.

      • Which Vel am I talking to? The one who agreed that “Time is indeed the truest test of what is true.” or the one that claims it makes no sense? Yes, I’m not providing a cut and paste or a link to it, but you seem to want to re-write history and contradict yourself.

        On child rearing. Do you truly believe that your perspective on what it is like to have children and what parenting is like will not change if you had your own kids?

        Yes, I know women can be sexist. For a woman to be sexist it would be towards men…like suggesting the man is treating someone differently because they are a woman and not a man…as you have done. And they can be anti-feminist. Which is why I asked the question, that you would view the comments I made had I been a woman as anti-feminist.

        As for argument from silence. I commented about “spending time with your husband” but did not include the part about “having children.” So you raised the argument that I was still sexist because I only responded to the spending time but not the having children. Which again was a false claim and a poor argument from silence. As I pointed out, had you been a guy I would have made the exact same comments. To suggest that I only made those comments because I was a guy reflects more on you being sexist than it does me. “That because I am a guy I must believe this woman to only be worthy if she ‘tends to her husband’ or ‘has children.'”

        Surprised you haven’t commented that my comments towards your intelligence must come from me thinking because you are a woman then you are less intelligent then me a man. Had you made such comments you’d be wrong again like you were about my comments about spending time and having kids, but then again, you are trying to paint me as your ideal negative Christian…that because I believe in God and the Bible says all these things negative towards women than I must believe women to be inferior to men…how naive Vel.

        All your cutting and pasting shows is that you can cut and paste. It does not show that you understand what is being said. And when you raise arguments off of what you believe it to say you take what is actually intended out of context. Like taking part of a quote: “God loves and accepts everyone…” and neglecting “…but not everyone accepts God.” Which is not unconditional love or acceptance. That is why I made the corrective statements shame on you for taking it as such and shame on me for continuing the use of the word unconditional after you began using it. Do I need to explain to you how “God loves and accepts everyone, BUT not everyone *loves* or accepts God,” is NOT an example of unconditional love or acceptance?

        So by your statements on equality, tolerance, and disrespect. I can state that you (Vel) being intolerant of my (KD) views and beliefs means you are not worth my respect. And you (Vel) being disrespectful towards what is important to me (KD) means that you are not a decent humane person. And you (Vel) couldn’t actually believe that everyone should be treated equally otherwise that would mean you believe someone who commits a crime should be treated with equal punishment. Like a thief who steals bread to give to the homeless should be treated like a murderer. No, you put conditions on equality and the treatment of others.

        You in effect are saying that “one must agree with you” to be worthy of your tolerance, to be treated as an equal, or to have your respect. I’m fairly certain I stated this a long time ago, but it is nice to hear you finally admit it.

        When I say, I give my respect to others. It is only after they have demonstrated that they are not decent human people, they are intolerant or disrespectful that they lose my respect. People do not have to “earn” my respect, I already respect them. But that doesn’t mean I will not lose respect for someone based off of the actions and treatment of others. Like I said, if their views prove to be negative or wrong, I will question them. I will challenge them. So I do have conditions for someone to “keep” my respect but I do not believe myself better than someone that they must “earn” it.

        I am so glad you posted your own post in this comment. It IS shifting the burden of proof when you believe that the critic must prove a religion “right” to disprove your claim that all religions are “wrong.”

        Your premise is that you are setting out to prove that all religions (or perhaps all beliefs in gods) is wrong. Which would suggest that only atheism is right??? But that’s beside the question. First, I commented that starting your post like this is dangerous as you will likely commit circular reasoning…or that what you say next will be related to your premise and thus prove your premise. It’d be like someone claiming they are going to prove the Sun is the center of the Universe and give the reason that because the Sun is the center of our Solar System therefore it is the center of the Universe. Mind you, this is a very simplified argument, but it is to suggest that the reasons given do not prove the claim being made.

        You use an example that because someone might neglect medical treatment because they believe god will heal their child, thus causing harm to the child is evidence against all religions. It says nothing against the numerous religious people who seek medical treatment. So the belief that one should neglect advanced medical treatment might be wrong but that does not prove the religion itself is wrong.

        You claim that people believe (X, Y, or Z) without any evidence that all religions believe those things or that those things are in fact negative.

        You attack that people have religion because they want to feel they have an understanding of how the universe works, that they can have a powerful being care about them, or that the power being does their bidding. All of these are false premises and are oversimplifications of what religions believe. The last one that “god does a humans bidding” is overtly false, you’ve essentially stated that god is Aladdin’s genie.

        Let’s see, your attack on people wanting to understand how the universe works. This comes from science providing us with evidence for how it works. It says nothing against a Creator God. You will criticize this next comment but you seem to be overly critical of everything that I say. Science is a tool used by humans to uncover what God has already done. Even Stephen Hawkings stated, “If we do discover a theory of everything…it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason—for then we would truly know the mind of God.”

        You attack on people believe a god cares about them. This is contrary to many of historical god beliefs. The majority of “religions” like Ancient Egypt, Greece, etc. is that “the gods” despised humans and made them do the work they do not care to do or that was beneath them. In Christianity, the belief is that God works alongside humanity, that humanity is is prized possession and the apex of his creation, that while humans are not equal to God they are equal to one another, and he has given us the world we live in to be ours and make of it what we will. He allows us to make mistakes and learn from them as any good parent would do.

        Finally, you compare religion to tribalism. This seems to attack the necessity of religion again not a proof that any religion is wrong, simply that it may not be needed in advanced societies today.

        So, your post does not prove any religion wrong. It may prove that people have beliefs that are harmful or that some of the beliefs held in religion may not be necessary but you have failed to prove all religion (or belief in any god) wrong. This is why I stated that your comments may not be false, that there is truth in them. But it does not make your entire claim true.

        As for all your “proofs” that I’m wrong. No you haven’t, you just believe that you have proved me wrong. That’s why I asked you to review the entire conversation 20 times and look at it critically. Stop thinking that you are right and start examining the evidence for your self. This is also not saying that I was right about everything. I can readily admit that. You seem to be the one incapable of accepting that you might be wrong about certain things.

        And please, do review the entire conversation. There are trends like the one you cited above about wording something in a similar way as a previous comment made. You seem to take each comment at a time and miss the direction of the entire conversation. Aside from the occasional side track, the direction is intended to go back to your claim from your post. I’ve intentionally neglected your questions and comments that have tried to shift the burden of proof that I must prove my “religion” or “belief in god” true to prove your claim that all are false. The fact that I’ve stated to you about 5 times now to review comments and ask questions pertaining to what was said is perplexing that you still haven’t caught on. You still seem to believe the argument is about something that it is not. You still seem to believe that you have not made any logical fallacies even though I’ve pointed out a number of them, mind you some are more questionable than others but that does not make them lies.

        The Tiger Woods analogy. Perhaps, I should have stated that you are acting like Tiger Woods if when he was confronted by Elin about cheating on her, told her: I went to all the women I supposedly cheated on you with and could not find any evidence that I did in fact cheat on you. It was to use an analogy of your claim that there is no evidence to support my claims that you have done as I’ve stated. No either you are lying about going back and reviewing the entire conversation or you are ignoring the facts. Simply stating that I must show you where you made logical fallacies is not proof that you did not commit them. Like I said, the evidence speaks for itself.

        The necessity for me to have to go through and explain this to you or “show you” where by cutting and pasting takes time away from my life. It takes time away from spending time with my wife and my kids. So yes, for me to use the excuse that I do not want to continue this conversation for that reason does not make my claims any less true or yours any more true. It has been my choice so I cannot blame you for it. But to continue this conversation would become increasingly pointless.

        So, while you can continue to believe in the non-sense that you believe about religions and people like KD, it does not make you right about what you believe. There may be parts that are true but there are parts that are not true. Or some of what you may believe as true is indeed false. You can argue until you are red in the face and still be wrong.

      • Unsuprisingly, KD, you’ve chosen to misrepresent what I have said. Let’s look at my quotes about time and truth. I’ll provide the cut and pastes since you refuse. I wonder why you refuse. Hmmm, could it be that what would be cut and pasted would not support your claims? Seems so. I’m not afraid to show evidence to support my arguments.

        “Time is indeed the truest test of what is true. Still waiting for your god to return. How much longer, KD? Another 20 years? Another thousand years? Another 5000 for the nonsense of Revelation to happen? Another 10,000?”

        And

        “Time is not the “truest test of what is true.” That doesn’t even make any sense. How can the passage of time test if something is true? Now, having time to find evidence can make the case for something to be true. Let’s consider your religion. We’ve had claims that it is true and that the events in it are real. It’s been how long now since people have been looking and not finding anything to support your claims? Over two thousand years evidently. And still nothing. No evidence for this god as the “Creator”. No evidence for any of the essential events. No evidence of the supposedly grand kingdoms of David and Solomon. We have no evidence of other religions either, just like yours. No evidence of the nonsense from the Qu’ran. Nothing supporting the claims of celestial wars from the Hindu myths, etc. We have claims about every 50 years or so that your god is coming back “real soon now”, and they all fail, despite the claim of your bible that this savior will be back within a generation. The claim of the JWs that JC came back but was “invisible” is one of the classics. How much longer do you think your religion can last if there is nothing supporting it? Several thousand years like the ancient Egyptian pantheon? A few years like the People’s Church? The various sects of Christianity that have come and gone? In case you didn’t notice, here are more questions that you’ve asked for.”

        This started from your words “You’ve stated you believe ignorance to cause harm…you are very ignorant of what I believe. Of what people who do not share your views believe. You may even be ignorant of what you yourself believe, even though you will likely not admit this. What I mean by that is that, you may believe something even though it’s wrong (Time is the truest test of what is true).” And “So unlike your Dr. friend states…you’re hope and faith in science and atheism is no different than hope and faith in God. Time is the truest test of what is true.”

        I certainly could have done better in clarity but I have not materially contradicted myself. Both, in context, show that time is what happens when looking for evidence. We are waiting for the evidence that your god exists by its supposed return. The return has not happened though Christians have claimed it has already or it will “real soon now”. We also have had millennia pass with no evidence of your god or the supposed events in the bible at all being found. You may claim that I have contradicted myself. It still won’t be true. We have no evidence that you are not wrong in your claims that your god exists. I will restate what I mean “Time is not the “truest test of what is true”. Time in and of itself makes nothing true. Time is what passes while claims of evidence are being made and people try to find the evidence. If time passes and we have no evidence despite the very hard work by those who think they can find it, this demonstrates that the premise is very likely false. If time passes and prophecy is not fulfilled in a time period that seems to be indicated by the prophecy e.g. that the events will come true within a human generation, this also shows that the premise is very likely false. If changes have to be made to the prophecy, by claiming that something doesn’t “really” mean what it appears to, then the premise is very likely false since the goalpost are being moved.

        KD, if I didn’t truly believe it I would not have said it. Despite your hopes, repeatedly asking the same question will not get a different answer. I’m waiting for you to show me your claim is true and mine is not, yet you still avoid that and keep asking.

        Yep, I know that my perspective on what it is like to have children and what parenting is like will not change if I had kids. You make this claim again and again, and I’ll ask you. What about the process would cause this change? You seem to think you know that this occurs, so tell me the mechanism. I know that my perspective on many things doesn’t need me to directly experience things to know my position on them. I do not need to have sex with a woman to know what it very likely will be like. I do not have to climb Mt. Everest to know that it will be difficult, cold, exhilarating, etc. This insistence that I will somehow “know” things better is also at odds with the claim that we cannot know things (some or all) even with evidence. It seems that you wish to have your cake and eat it too when it comes to objective knowledge.

        You evidently did not know that women can be sexist if you asked me if I would feel differently if a woman asked what you did. A woman can be sexist toward their own sex, as men can also be. Being sexist is deciding that the sex is a stereotype and that all of one sex or the other must fit into that, with predjudice being based on that. It is not being anti-feminist, which would indicate that one thinks that feminists were wrong, not that all women should be one thing.

        You said that you thought I should have children. Let’s look at your original quote “In case you were still wondering, I’m ignoring all of you requests. And suggesting you spend more time with your husband. Maybe have a few kids. Enjoy life and the beautiful mess we live in. Understand that we are all broken people and it’s okay not to be perfect. And learn that people can believe in God and not do harm. (They can even be religious or have religion).” Again, I see you trying the good ol’ TrueChristian tactic in claiming that since you didn’t say exactly what I said, that you can’t be held accountable for what you meant. As you have been shown repeatedly, arguments from silence can be very valid. You responded to only one part of my criticism and did not respond to the other. Arguments from silence are built on what one can reasonable expect someone to have commented on. It is suspect that you did not answer both since there was no reason not to answer both *unless* there was some problem with answering the latter point. You have claimed that you would have made the same argument if I were a guy, which may or may not be true, KD. I cannot know. As for what reflects on whom, please do show me how I was sexist. It is not that your sex is under question for your actions, it’s your religion. Your religion says that for a woman to be worth anything, she must have a husband and have children. You may ignore those parts of your religion but they are part of your holy book, as valid as “love one another” if one isn’t cherry picking.

        I’m sure you are surprised that I am not doing what you mistakenly assume. That’s why your claims don’t match with reality. No, KD, there is no reason to think that your maleness has anything to do with you making false comments about my intelligence. That’s just you. You aren’t an ideal negative Christian. You are just one in a million of the same who want to believe in some things from their religion but not others.

        Oh and more claims that I “don’t understand what is being said”. Again, no evidence of this, but just vague claims that you know ever so much more than me, that your version is the only “right” one. And of course, you’ll likely deny every claiming this. I of course did not taking part of a quote as you tried to demonstrate. That is quite a sad little lie, KD, and so pathetically easy to show as intentionally false.

        Please do show me how pasting “God loves and accepts everyone” and not pasting “but not everyone accepts God” changes the fact that you have claimed that your god has unconditional love. I did not say that everyone had unconditional love. If your god loves and accepts “everyone”, there is nothing that would preclude its love and acceptance, no conditions to be found. Thus, God has unconditional love. “But not everyone accepts God” is not referring to God at all, this shows that everyone (e.g. humans) do have conditions on their love and acceptance. Thus, humans do not have unconditional love. The conjunction “but” indicates a change between two conditions and yours did exactly that. Let me ask a clarifying question, one that you said you would answer. When you invited me “unconditionally” to visit you and your family, what does “unconditionally” mean in that sentence?

        I have no problem being intolerant of what you believe, KD. I don’t care about your respect, KD. It has no value at all to me. What do I care about the “respect” of someone who equally gives it to people who would enslave others, etc? What you consider a decent humane being is also meaningless to me.

        Wow, nice lies, KD. No, KD, I have never said that people should be punished equally for disparate crimes. Please do show me where I even implied that. Now, I can show that your religion/god says this is okay. Death is required for being an adulterer. Death is required for working on the “Sabbath”. Death is required for worshipping idols. Death is required for not screaming loud enough if one is being raped. Death is required if you are a stubborn son. Etc, etc. It’s so cute to watch you try to twist my words. Keep on doing so, KD. It is a great example of how a person claiming to be a Christian is meaningless compared to their actions. Yep, I am indeed saying that to get my tolerance and respect and treatment as an equal, you have to do and act as I find acceptable. You seem to think I’ve never admitted this before and take some pride in imagining that you had something to do with me saying this. Alas, you aren’t nearly as important as you think.

        Oh now, we have KD saying that he takes his respect away from people *after* they’ve demonstrated that they are not decent humane people, that they are intolerant and disrespectful to others. So people have to do things to keep your respect but not to earn it. That’s great, KD. So you do have the same conditions as I do it seems.

        No, it is not shifting the burden of proof when I require that you show your claims are true, that your god exists. You have made a positive claim that something is true. If I say that there is a teapot circling Zeta Retculi, then I must show that this is true. If I cannot, then you have no need to believe me. As I have no need to believe you. You claim that your religion is the only right one, KD. You have repeatedly stated that everyone else is wrong, again, a positive claim about the state of reality. If you cannot show this to be the case, then again your claim is baseless. If I can show your religion to be false, by showing that the events claimed by it did not occur and other events did in their place, that prayer does not work, that your god has no more evidence for its existence than others, then by claiming that I am wrong, you must present countering evidence. Saying “Nuh-uh” isn’t evidence.

        How is my premise that all religions are wrong/all belief in gods wrong, KD? You can say it is but until you show how it is wrong, your words are again meaningless. You need to add “is wrong *because*……”. You have claimed that I will “likely commit circular reasoning”. So have I, KD? Or is this one more prediction of yours that has failed? Atheism is right in that gods have not been shown to exist. As soon as you have that evidence, KD, I’d be happy to consider it. Show me evidence that your god exists and that the other gods don’t, since the arguments you use for your god are largely the same that are used for the existence of every other god. Please do show me how I argued anything even vaguely similar to your silly claim that someone would prove that the sun is the center of the solar system and thus is the center of the universe. I’m waiting…..again.

        People *have* neglected medical treatment because they believe god will heal their child. Nice to see that you seem to still be ignoring that this is the facts of the matter. Causing harm to the child shows that religion causes harm. In that there is no evidence for the gods exist at all, that all prayers for healing fail, this is why religion is wrong *and* harmful.

        Yep, lots of religious people seek treatment. I suspect you’ve taken your girls to the doctor for antibiotics among other things. But your bible says that prayer will heal them and doctors aren’t needed. Per your bible, if anyone is sick, one is to take them to the elders who will anoint them and then heal them. Why don’t you just do that, KD if your bible is to be believed? Why spend money on modern medicine when a prayer is claimed to work without fail? The common excuse is that God gave us medicine and we should use it because he did. Which begs the question, why didn’t your god give the same medicine to those who had the poor timing to be born before antibiotics, anesthesia, blood transfusions, chemotherapy, etc? I’m asking a question, KD. You said you’d answer them. Or are we back to you ignoring my requests again when they are inconvenient for your nonsense?

        Every belief by theists about their gods and religion have failed, KD. If you have evidence otherwise, please show it.

        I do not attack religion because people want to feel like they have an understanding of the universe. Fail. I attack religion because they claim to have the only understanding of the universe and it is demonstrably wrong. Their claims that they have some powerful being tending them is also demonstrably wrong.

        But let’s just look at Christians, at your religion. Christians claim that this power does their bidding, KD. How many hits do you get if you google “my prayer was answered”? as of this afternoon, 328,000 and this isn’t counting all of the claims, this is only going for websites that literally say “my prayer was answered”. They claimed that they asked for something and that god did as they asked, e.g. their bidding. Now, if you want to say all of these folks are lying, I’m okay with that, as long as you can provide evidence of it. I think they are because all of their answered prayers are self-editing and/or pure coincidence and people preening about how important their god finds *them*. What do you think?

        Your religion says “ask and you shall receive” no qualifications given. Your religion claims that your god created the universe. Christians claim that they “know” that their god “loves everyone” just like you have claimed yourself. Yep, I have declared that Christians, and other theists have claimed that their gods are Aladdin’s genie, because that’s what *they* say. You claim I have oversimplified religion. This seems to me the usual claim of a TrueChristian who is sure that his religion is far more “sophisticated” than “those others”. Of course, you can’t show that even your apologetics are any better than those others. Take for example, the modern Christian addition to how prayers are answered. You now add that God may say no or give you something else that is better for you or for it. But the bible says nothing about such things; those excuses are created to avoid the problem of a god that was made up by a culture considerably less aware of reality as it is.

        The sciences, through the scientific method, have shown us how the world works. Christians have claimed to know this and science has shown them wrong every single time. Your myths have said that this god created light before light sources. It mentions nothing about the likely expansion of the universe. It assumes a steady state universe, never changing just like the ignorant ancients did. Your claim that science is a tool used to discover what God has already done is hilarious. (your God? Really? Not Tezcatlipoca?) For instance, your bible has claimed that your god keeps hail in magical storehouses. We know that this is simply silly. I know, you’ll claim “that’s a metaphor” but then are the other parts of the bible just metaphor? Again, how do you know, or are you retconning the bible to match what we know now and ignoring the context? It seems that you are.

        The entire quote from Dr. Hawking: “If we do discover a complete theory, it should in time be understandable in broad principle by everyone, not just a few scientists. Then we shall all, philosophers, scientists, and just ordinary people, be able to take part in the discussion of the question of why it is that we and the universe exist. If we find the answer to that, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason — for then we would know the mind of God.” – Black Holes, Baby Universes and Other Essays, 1993

        “We shouldn’t be surprised that conditions in the universe are suitable for life, but this is not evidence that the universe was designed to allow for life. We could call order by the name of God, but it would be an impersonal God. There’s not much personal about the laws of physics.” – “Leaping the Abyss”, Reason Magazine, April 2002

        Hopefully, you do know that Dr. Hawking is not talking about the Christian God and no he does not agree with your nonsense.

        “We are each free to believe what we want and it is my view that the simplest explanation is there is no God. No one created the universe and no one directs our fate. This leads me to a profound realization. There is probably no heaven, and no afterlife either. We have this one life to appreciate the grand design of the universe, and for that, I am extremely grateful.” – Curiosity: Did God Create the Universe?, Discovery Channel, 2011

        You claim that I attack people because they claim that a god cares about them. I attack them because this claim is wrong and I feel it leads to people ignoring their responsibilities.

        I do love how you use quotes around religion when referring to the religion of the Ancient Egyptians. It was a religion just like yours, full of baseless claims and nonsense. I happen to known a fair amount about that religion and I don’t recall anything saying that the gods despised humans. The closest I know of is when Sekhmet was created by Amon-Re to punish mankind for disobeying him. Bes was the protector of children. The gods made the Nile flood to benefit man. For you to claim that they despised humanity is false. The Gods of ancient Greece and Rome are the same. We even have gods falling in love with humans. Prometheus stole fire *for* humans because he created them. KD, you need to research things before you claim them true.

        Your version of Christianity isn’t the same as other Christians. In this, again you show you think only yours is the correct version. What shows that God “works along side humanity”? We have God threatening humanity, punishing man for disobeying him, punishing man for not accepting him/his son as “messiah”, destroying man’s works, etc. We have this god killing humanity in the end, except for those who obeyed him and those were chosen supposedly before they were born. Humanity is no more a prized posession to this god than they are to the other pantheons. We also have that humans are not equal to one another through out the bible. If they were, there would be no slaves approved by this god. At best, we have one instance that those in Christ are equal to one another and that’s it. Even that is shown to be ignored when it comes to women and men, where men obey god and women obey men, a lovely example of second-class status. There is nothing that says that this god will allow us to make mistakes and learn from them. If this god intervenes at all, and he has per the bible, this means that humans are being interfered with. Every miracle that occurs that negates the choice of someone (as you know I do not believe in free will) by this god’s interference, every battle that has the outcome changed, every pharaoh that has his will hardened for him, shows your claim to be wrong. If you want to say that the bible is wrong, that is fine but again how do we know that parts could be true since we have no evidence to support *any* of it.

        I do compare religion to tribalism. It is a group of people who have decided that they are the most important, that they deserve land, resources, etc because of who they are. I know that this does not in and of itself show that religion is wrong. Tribalism is just as ridiculous as religion.

        My post does show that religion is wrong and I have cited evidence of that, KD. It shows that no beliefs of religion can be shown to be true and thus they are useless at best and harmful at worst. I have shown your claims wrong with evidence. You have not contested them with counter evidence, only claims that you are right. We have no evidence of any of your religion, nor that your particular version is the true one.

        Here we go again with your command to look at the discussion and golly if I do, I’ll come to the same conclusion that you have if I’m intelligent enough. I have read our discussion and it still comes out as your religion is nonsense and myth. I have examined the evidence for myself and, shock!, I have come to a different conclusion than you and can support that conclusion with evidence. I’m still waiting for yours. You keep insisting that if I just look long enough, I’ll admit that I am wrong. That assumes I am wrong and you have yet to show that to be true. Again, you throw shit at a wall and hope that some of it sticks without doing any work. You again lie about me when you claim I cannot accept that I might be wrong. I’m not the person saying if you just read nonsense over and over again you’ll realize I’m “right”.

        Hmmm, claims of “trends”. So, show me these trends, KD, don’t just make vague claims. Show me how I “miss the direction of the entire conversation”. But no, you won’t, you’ll just hope that someone takes your word without actually looking at the conversation. I know you’ve tried to avoid the burden of proving your own claims and it’s cute every single time you try it. Poor KD, keep telling me to review the comments again and again, in the hopes that I’ll suddenly agree with you. Like I said, if I review them another 20 times, will that magically change things since I haven’t changed yet? And where have you pointed out a “number of logical fallacies”? Hmmm? Weren’t you ignoring my requests? So when did this happen? Where are these fallacies, KD? I’m still waiting. Accusing me of making logical fallacies and never showing where they are as you have insisted you won’t does make your accusations lies since you cannot show them to be true despite the numerous times I’ve asked. Remember the times you said you had no time? If I couldn’t find my own fallacies that commented poorly on my intelligence? Ah, good times.

        Oh and now the Tiger Woods analogy has changed. It still fails since I have not done as you said, I have not claimed that I have looked for evidence and not found any because I chose not to accept it. I have not found any evidence because there is none to support *your* claims, KD. You claim there is evidence and surprise! Haven’t been able to produce it. Tsk. And claiming I am lying about reviewing the conversation since I don’t agree with you now. This is pure gold “No either you are lying about going back and reviewing the entire conversation or you are ignoring the facts”. I must be ignoring the facts that you can’t present since I still don’t agree with you. How expected. Your consistent refusal to show me evidence of your claims is indeed evidence that you can’t provide it. It may not be “proof” but just like many conspiracy theorists, when asked for evidence of their claims, they suddenly can’t provide it.

        Yep, here we have again that you don’t have time to show evidence but golly, you have time to write hundreds of words. Poor KD, that evidently doesn’t “take time away from” your life, but cutting and pasting magically does.  Funny how that works. I’ll just let your own words speak for you, KD.

        You have chosen to take this time away from your kids and wife. It’s good that you at least can accept that. It’s a pity that you had to whine about it to me. You are the one making claims, no one else, KD.

        You may leave the conversation at any time. No one cares if you continue. It’s always fun to see you insist that the conversation is “increasingly pointless”. It’s so convenient to claim that, isn’t it? Especially when your claims still have no evidence and you add even more false claims to the ones that already exist. You have still not shown me I am wrong, and you are more than welcome to declare victory and leave. You’re not the first or will you be the last theist who has done exactly that.

        Oh, and to finish up something that I knew you wouldn’t address. I asked you to tell me what evidence you have that I am Roman Catholic? That’s what determines if you are right or not, evidence not wishful thinking or hoping I was one of those Christians who “misuse” the bible. Tell me your deductive reasoning on coming to that conclusion. Because you are so very wrong in your guess on what sect I was raised in. Are you ready for it? I was raised Presbyterian, good ol’ Calvinist predestination believing Protestants. Now, why were you so very wrong?

      • I hope you haven’t missed my absence too much. I’d like to share a story with you.

        I had been dating a girl for a month and a half. I was head over heels for her. I had prayed one night that I wanted to marry her. If it was God’s will.

        Then December 20, 2007 came along. I had a meeting with a Staff member of the College Ministry that I was involved with. We planned on meeting at the mall but something came up and he couldn’t make it. So I had some time and decided to wander around a little bit.

        I guess God took me seriously…as I was praying I was led to a Jewelry store. I figured I could find out about the 4 C’s of diamonds and get an idea of price of rings. I sat down with the sales woman and she explained what Cut, Color, Clarity, and Carat all meant and gave me pricing on a diamond and ring setting. The whole time I’m praying that God is leading me during this whole process and that as I’m looking at these diamonds and ring settings that He shows me the ring for the woman he desires me to marry.

        Well, the sales woman was good. And the store had a good deal going on. And I walked out having bought an engagement ring…

        A little over a week later. I’m watching a movie with my girlfriend and our conversation turned to marriage. We had both felt like we could see ourselves getting married one day. This was the first time we had this conversation with one another. As the days went on we talked about getting engaged and planning for a wedding. I asked her to start looking at rings and what she would like so I had some ideas of what to get her (she had no idea I had already bought a ring).

        One night, when I got to her place she had been studying up on diamonds and looking at rings. I go with her and she pulls the ring setting that she liked up and started by saying “I don’t know how much you are looking to spend on a ring, I like this ring setting…but I don’t like the diamond…I would like it in this cut, color, clarity, and carat.”

        After she was done showing me I excused myself and went in the bathroom. I began to cry over the ring she had picked out. We loved each other, we both wanted to get married to each other…but our first commitment was to honoring God. and I had made a vow to God when I bought the ring. That I would wait to marry the woman who the ring I bought was intended for.

        So, I sat in the bathroom and cried. I was overwhelmed.

        You see, the ring setting she showed me, the cut, color, clarity, and carat of the diamond she desired and described was identical to the ring God led me to buy in the store that day.

        My wife’s wedding ring is more than a token of our love for one another, more than a symbol of our commitment to one another. Her ring, for me, is evidence of God’s love and grace. Of God’s promises and His answer to prayers.

        I will answer one other request of yours. If you read carefully, I stated that I was still leaning towards Roman Catholic. Which means that I had begun to have doubts that you were raised Roman Catholic. I used the “leaning towards” as an analogy to display why when used an argument from silence “that because I responded to one part (spending time with your husband) but not a second part (having kids) therefore I was still being sexist and must believe certain things about you because you are a woman.”

        It’s unlikely that you would believe me when I say, my second inclination when I wrote “still leaning towards…” to your Christian upbringing was Presbyterian.

        As for your belief that I was walking away and felt like I “won an argument.” You yet again missed the point. How many times do I have to explain I didn’t come here to “win an argument.” My comments are more than enough evidence of that. This dialogue became pointless because that seemed to be all you cared about, which is also what my post on Atheists was about.

        Like, I’ve said. re-read the comments. Stop looking at it like I’m debating or arguing with you. Use as much critical reasoning as you have and really look at the conversation in a different light or from a different perspective than you already have. You might be surprised at what you find. Or you might unsurprisingly not be surprised…I don’t know?

        I wish you the best in your life’s endeavors.

      • No one missed you at all, KD. You are interchangeable with so many other TrueChristians. Like so many TrueChristians before you, you think you can post your nonsense and try to ignore the fact that you ran away without answering questions put to you. You come back again and again sure that you “finally” have something useful to tell, but forget that you said that you were leaving. I wonder, have you been praying and have you come back to see if you’ve gotten any results? No, KD, you, and your imaginary friend have failed again.

        Let’s take a look at your most recent post. We have the requisite claim that the TC has prayed to their god to agree to what the TC wants. Golly, KD, you were supposed “led” to a jewelry store. Hmmm, but you were in a mall, and most, if not all malls have jewelry stores. No magical intervention needed there at all. You were thinking of marriage, again no god needed at all. I do love how such arrogant and needy people like you are sure that your god takes an interest in everything you do, but golly if someone else prayed and who really needed it, to save a loved ones life, to provide food for their family, and didn’t get a positive answer, well, they were praying wrong or their god didn’t want them to get what they asked for.

        It’s so cute that you want to claim that your god helped you pick out a diamond. I never got an engagement ring, my husband just looked at me and said “you know I want to get married to you, right?”. I didn’t see the point of the waste of money on a little piece of carbon mined in questionable conditions. And KD, jewelry stores always “have a good deal”. That’s how they get people to waste money on useless things.

        Now, your store has all of the hallmarks of pure false glurge. But let’s assume it’s true. You say your wife asked for specific cut, color, clarity and carat. So? Again, your invocation of god is dependent on things that are easily explained. Women are marketed too, as were you when you picked the ring out. It’s no surprise that your wife wanted a certain thing and that you were encouraged to buy a certain thing. Your god is reduced to coincidence and parlor tricks.

        Now, let me ask you: would you accept your story if it invoked Allah or the Wiccan Goddess or any other of a hundred thousand gods? Why or why not? I’m going to predict we’ll never get an answer to that. Perhaps you’ll surprise me.

        Your wedding rings may be a token of your love and a symbol of commitment. They are not evidence of any god’s intervention, no matter how much you want to pretend. Or do you accept every other claim about such things are true even if they are about other gods? Golly, KD got his “prayer” answered but screw anyone who actually needed help.

        Oh and I get one more baseless accusation, evidently for old times’ sake. Now you want to claim that I have not read “carefully”. Aw, now you want to claim that you weren’t “really” claiming that your deductive reasoning wasn’t accurate in claiming that I was Roman Catholic. It’s hilarious to see you claim that “leaning towards” is now an analogy. It seems that you have no idea what an analogy is, KD. An analogy is when things are compared as alike in someway. Your claim makes no sense when you say that you somehow used “leaning toward” as an analogy “I used the “leaning towards” as an analogy to display why when used an argument from silence “that because I responded to one part (spending time with your husband) but not a second part (having kids) therefore I was still being sexist and must believe certain things about you because you are a woman.” You claimed that your deductive reasoning told you I was a Roman Catholic. I asked you repeatedly what this reasoning entailed. I’ll ask again: what about deductive reasoning told you that I was a Roman Catholic?

        And it’s even more hilarious that you now want to claim that your second guess would have been Presbyterian. First, your claim makes no sense Presbyterian since golly, they are ever so close in what they believe :) (deductive reasoning means you look at evidence and I do wonder how this evidence could have given you such diametrically opposed results) and second, I have no reason to believe anything you say since you’ve said so many false things. It’s also great to see that you still haven’t a clue about arguments from silence.

        I don’t care how many times you say you weren’t here to win an argument. It’s not true. You came here to claim I was wrong. I showed how your claims were false. You claimed you had evidence. I asked for it. And then that’s when you, like so many other TrueChristians decided you weren’t “really” here to debate the quality of your claims which meant you didn’t have to provide any evidence. You even did me the great service of saying directly that you were ignoring what I asked. Your comments are good evidence, but not for what you think. They show that you did come here to claim you were right, and you couldn’t provide any evidence to support that. You thought you had the only correct answers and didn’t think anyone *could* debate or argue with you.

        You again make false accusations. You now want to try again to claim that I am not using critical reasoning because I’m not agreeing with you. Okay, KD, show me where I haven’t. Oh yes, you’ll tell me it’s there if I just honestly look for it, right? Why the evidence is right there along with the evidence that I somehow used logical fallacies that you can’t find and show me. Tsk.

        You depend on bearing false witness about me and I do enjoy seeing a TrueChristian do that repeatedly. It tells me that even you don’t actually believe in what your bible says, because you don’t follow it when it’s inconvenient. You claim that I need to look at the discussion aka argument aka debate we have had with a “different perspective”. Again, another typical TrueChristian claim, that if I just look at it like they do, I’ll of course agree. No, KD, I’m not going to look at your nonsense in any other way than to compare it with reality. You lose every time. And that is no surprise at all.

        KD, I’m still waiting for you to show that your particular interpretation of the bible is the only “right” one. I’m still waiting for you to show me that all other religions are wrong. I’m still waiting for you to back up your claims that I have lied. I am still waiting for you to show me where I have used logical fallacies. You keep slinking back with nonsense but you can’t actually support your claims.

        Keep coming back, KD. You serve as a lovely example of just how unpleasant Christianity and religion do make people.

      • Unsurprisingly Vel, misses it again. Yes, you hit the nail on the head…READ MORE CAREFULLY.

        My analogy was not simply “leaning towards” you have to read the whole bit. Just like “God loves everyone, but not everyone loves God.” You can’t pick and choose one part and try and argue it, you have to take the whole part.

        Unsurprisingly, you rationalized away the story of my ring to devoid God from it. You seem to have a very simple and fundamental way of looking at things. Yes the diamond could be rationalized away as “marketing,” I didn’t mention that she showed me a lower quality diamond that she would have been just as happy with. You see, she showed me a preset ring that she wanted. But the quality of diamond in the preset was less than what she desired. The ring I bought her was not a preset diamond so it matched her desired quality.

        The story of your husband’s proposal is essentially how the conversation went with my wife when we decided to get married to one another.

        And how do you explain the ring setting. How she picked out the exact same setting that I had bought weeks before? Marketing? Coincidence?

        You seem to be asking a very silly question about “invoking” any number of hundreds of gods. I can only assume this comes from your belief that you as an atheist simply believe in one less god than me as a Christian. The whole thing is quite comical. Of course you could be mistakenly interpreting my belief in God to mean that means I do not believe any other gods to exist. The Bible mentions other gods than God. You’ve read it, you should already know this?

        So, your question of invoking “other gods” would be determinate on my personal beliefs and prayers. I did not invoke Allah or the Wiccan Goddess, but had I and the result came out as it did, my faith or belief in said gods would be reinforced.

        However, that is to sell belief in God extremely short of reality. As belief in God is not determinate of receiving desired outcomes. You do realized that the prayer Jesus teaches his followers to pray is for God’s will not their own?

        Back to the deductive reasoning. Initially I based the Roman Catholic off of a comment you made that seemed that you belief that Heaven is based on a person’s works. If you find the first time I mention you being raised Catholic you might be able to see in your comment where I would be led to believe that?

        But the claim that my second inclination of you be Presbyterian came as a result of my doubting you were raised Catholic. You believe that Catholics and Presbyterians are wildly different sects, how silly. But as the conversation continued you being raised Catholic didn’t seem to fit your comments. Presbyterian does.

        While you believe you understand my beliefs, you likely have no idea what sect I was raised, or that through high school and my early college years I stopped believing God existed. Like you, my parents allowed me the freedom to be open minded and make choices regarding my beliefs. It’s a generational thing. I say that because I picture you in your mid 20’s. I could be wrong, but I would venture that you are approximately 24-26 years old and have been married for approximately 2-3 years to the husband you ardently love. I could in fact be way off in my assessment of your age and length of marriage but that’s why I prefer conversation versus an argument.

        If you re-read and understand that “my claims” are statements of my beliefs. No where do I claim that what I believe is absolutely right, quite the opposite if I recall. When you took my comments as an argument to “prove you wrong” you were mistaken. Your desire to be “right” in what you believe and even more the belief that your logic and justification of those beliefs is flawless is highly questionable.

        You could say that my presence here is my being an “unpleasant Christian” but the reality is, you’ve been quite an “unpleasant Atheist.” Now, considering I came to your blog and started questioning your logic and beliefs must in some way give you ‘the right” to be unpleasant will be taken into consideration.

        I will again reiterate that my claims have never been intended to say my beliefs or interpretations are the “only right ones.” That again is your projected beliefs about me and other Christians. I actually find your reference to me as a True Christian highly offensive. I understand why you do it and where it comes from but it’d be like me always referring to you or other atheists as Atheist Fools. E.G., Now Vel, like all other Atheist Fools…

        Unsurprisingly, you are demanding of evidence of my claims. That I must show you this evidence for there to be in fact be evidence…you realized that one of the reasons I have not cut and pasted evidence of your logical fallacies is because it is the same response I gave you when you demanded evidence of proof that God exists. My response to both these questions is the same…the evidence is right in front of you…this comment will be met with the ever tired “proof that which God exists? Allah? the Wiccan Goddess? etc. Please if you have evidence that I’ve stated those gods do not exist please show me?

        Why would I need to show you that all other religions are wrong? That was the premise of your post. You are still trying to get me to prove that my beliefs are right, in fact that they are the only ones that are right. That would make me like you Vel. That’s actually what your post is about. Proof that your views are the only right ones, justification of your belief system. I thought I tried to cover this with you a long time ago. But you go back to someone else needing to provide evidence that your beliefs your justifications are wrong…that they must provide evidence that you are wrong. And you demand they do this by proving that they are right?

        As for religion, you know that I am Christian. Outside my belief in God, what other aspects must be met for me to be “religious?” I’m sure you have a list. Religion is not based solely on belief in God as you try and claim. So please you claimed that I am religious or have religion, so please let’s examine this?

        Of course, as we examine it, remember my claim that you are just as religious minus belief in God as I am.

      • “Of course, as we examine it, remember my claim that you are just as religious minus belief in God as I am.”

        Why yes, that claim that was shown to be based on you intentionally ignoring the definition of religion in context of my post. You still have yet to answer my question “why is it so important to you to claim that atheists are “religious?”

        So, why is that, KD? Why do you have to claim that others are religious when they are only in the later widened definition of the term that makes many people “religious”? You are religious:
        1: relating to or manifesting faithful devotion to an acknowledged ultimate reality or deity 2
        : of, relating to, or devoted to religious beliefs or observances 3a : scrupulously and conscientiously faithful b : fervent, zealous

        At best, you can claim that some atheists are 3B, not all. And guess where the word zealous comes from? a term that comes from the Hebrew meaning jealous on behalf of a god. So, we can see that the word religious, and at least one of its synonyms is directly related to worship of the supernatural. You are certainly religious as is every other theist in the world.

        I’ll be back to the rest of your nonsense soon.

      • So let me ask you a few questions:

        Are you not faithfully devoted to or acknowledge an ultimate reality? That there is no god is an ultimate reality…no life after death…etc.

        Are you not devoted to “religious” beliefs or observances? (consider religious to be an ambiguous term in this part of the definition that does not require belief in the supernatural). Do you not blog about your beliefs on a regular basis, do you not research and find evidence to support your claims and your beliefs?

        Are you not scrupulously and conscientiously faithful (in your beliefs, attitudes, or practices)? To answer this one for you…yes you are. Of course, you again have to understand that faithful does not mean “faith” but that you are “devoted” like in definition #2.

        Are you not fervent or zealous (in your beliefs, attitudes, or practices)? Again, the answer that should come out of your mouth is yes. Any other attempt to “rationalize” or change the definition of the word will fail.

        Be mindful of your responses because the evidence of you blog and comments is that you do in fact meet all of these requirements. I actually find the definition you’ve provided to demonstrate earlier comments I’ve made regarding being “religious.”

        Of course, when you try and change the definition of the word to mean only one thing, that is requiring the belief in the supernatural (as you are so desperately trying to do in expanding 3B). You have very well failed.

        You can deny it all you want. You can claim I’m “stretching” the definition. You can try and argue your way out of it, but maybe, just maybe, the truth will set in that you are as “religious in your beliefs that there is no god” as any “religious” person is with their belief in a god.

        As you will attempt to state that “not all atheists” share the same beliefs. You ignore that not all theists share the same beliefs. To be religious by the definition that you’ve provided it is not required for “all atheists” to fit into a mold, just as you do not require “all theists” to fit into a mold outside of the belief in the supernatural. So, yes, again, you are very ignorant in your beliefs. And you really need to work on your reading comprehension and critical reasoning. Like I said, asking questions rather than making comments will help you learn AND understand better. Rather than being just another Atheist Fool.

      • Oh, KD. I did read it carefully and alas, it still hasn’t changed its meaning. You keep trying to claim I haven’t read your posts carefully enough or in their entirety, and you are still lying. I have and you still fail.

        I have not rationalized away your story. I have shown that it is garbage as evidence when you want to impress me and pretend that your god is real and it answers *your* prayers. As other have already said in my blog post about your glurge, we’ve all heard the same stories from all sorts of theists and there is no reason to believe any of you. I’ll ask again, KD, why should I believe your nonsense and not the exact same story invoking a different god than yours? You want me to accept your nonsense as evidence, but you do not accept the same nonsense as evidence for another religion and its deity/force.

        I do like how you keep finding new details. Oh, so she didn’t ask for exactly the carat and quality you bought, like you said. “I didn’t mention that she showed me a lower quality diamond that she would have been just as happy with. You see, she showed me a preset ring that she wanted. But the quality of diamond in the preset was less than what she desired. The ring I bought her was not a preset diamond so it matched her desired quality.”

        But you said “You see, the ring setting she showed me, the cut, color, clarity, and carat of the diamond she desired and described was identical to the ring God led me to buy in the store that day.” So, we have you buying a diamond ring. We have you asking her to show you a ring that she would be happy with. She did and now we have the claim that she showed you a diamond that was of lower quality than the one you got. So your ring wasn’t identical to what she showed you. I’m not trying to bust your balls here, KD, but you aren’t telling the truth. You are adjusting it to match what you want to believe. I am amused that those who aren’t supposed to value things in this world go out of their way to get “better” diamonds. “I don’t know how much you are looking to spend on a ring, I like this ring setting…but I don’t like the diamond…I would like it in this cut, color, clarity, and carat.”

        Do you think I’m ignorant of ring settings, KD? They don’t vary that much and again marketing is just as much a reason to think she picked one out of a hundred. I’ll ask a few more questions. You obviously got a single stone setting. That narrows it down. Did you tell her how much you were willing to spend? That would narrow it down again. Did you offer any opinion on what you liked? Again, let’s replace the god in your claim. Believe it wholeheartedly now?

        And you hid in a bathroom to cry about this? Really? You didn’t rejoice to the heavens that this happened? I sure would have. This woman is supposedly as devoted to your god as you and you didn’t tell her right away? When did you tell her? Or is this again just nonsense and she would never recognize the events described?

        An atheist does believe in one less god than a Christian. Or do you believe in other gods, KD? Do you? I wouldn’t blame you if you did, since your god itself said that there were others just like it (Exodus 20:3). And shock of shocks, you are disagreeing with other Christians who insist that there are no other gods. Now, KD, who is right? And how can we tell? You? Deuteronomy 4:35 “35 You were shown these things so that you might know that the LORD is God; besides him there is no other.”Deut 32:39 where your god itself makes this claim ““See now that I myself am he! There is no god besides me.” Isaiah 45:5 “I am the LORD, and there is no other; apart from me there is no God.” 1 Corinthians 8: 6 “6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.”

        Did someone forget what Exodus said? Tsk. But yes, the bible says that there are other gods. Moses and Miriam were sure Exodus 15 “Who among the gods is like you, LORD?” Exodus 34? Judges 11? Psalm 82 where your god says all humans are gods (and no not all bible interpretations have “gods” with scare quotes)? John 10 where JC quotes Psalm 82?

        Again, we see that your bible makes no sense. Yep, KD, thanks for demonstrating again that Christians do not agree.

        I did not ask if you invoked other gods. I said this “Now, let me ask you: would you accept your story if it invoked Allah or the Wiccan Goddess or any other of a hundred thousand gods? Why or why not? I’m going to predict we’ll never get an answer to that. Perhaps you’ll surprise me.” I asked if *someone else* used your story as evidence of their god, would you believe in those gods and that they did exactly as you claim your god did?

        Now, again, would you accept such a story as evidence for another god if some other type of theist made the same claims you have? You can even answer on my newest blog post that allows everyone to subs to my blog to read your claims.

        Belief in your god is determinate on receiving desired outcomes. Because if there was no resurrection, no miracles as you invoke or any nonsense like Revelation claims to predict. Jesus does not say to only pray for god’s will. Your Jesus says that anything prayed for will be answered positively and quickly. I’ve heard the excuse before that prayers are only for God’s will. And that is hilarious. So, you pray for something, “only if it is God’s will”. So why pray at all if the only things that will happen are already determined? If the events aren’t already determined, then your god is less than the omnipotent and omniscient being that Christians, and the bible, claim it is. (Acts 1, Psalms 139, Jeremiah 23, 1 John 3).

        Well, KD, your deductive reasoning is valid based on a very narrow bunch of evidence, but you aren’t paying attention to your entire bible, and indeed you have yet to show that Roman Catholics are any less right than you are in your claims about Christianity. Your bible says that works are indeed important. Indeed, JC himself says that works are what allows him/god to separate the “sheep” from the “goats”. And do Roman Catholics even believe that getting to heaven is based on works? Bummer, Catholics say that they don’t teach that heaven is based on a person’s works: http://www.catholicscomehome.org/salvation/

        Catholics and Presbyterians are indeed “wildly different sects”. Hmmm, we have predestination and not. We have the virgin mary and not. We have saints and not. We have each claiming the other will go to hell. We have Protestants and Catholics burning each other to death over their differences. In claiming that they aren’t “wildly different sects”, it seems that either you know nothing about Catholicism and Presbyterianism or you are lying again. And how do my comments fit being a Presbyterian? Nice vague claim that they do but I want more. How do they do so? Or are you lying again?

        KD, I know your beliefs. You’ve told me them. And you are like every other Christian in making up all sorts of shit and claiming it’s “Christian”.

        I’m flattered that you think I’m in my mid-20s. If you would actually look at my website, you’d know that I’m in my late 40s. Looking for facts does help when you are trying to learn about something. I’ve been married for, are you ready? I was married in 1991. I lived with my husband for 2 years before that. I’ve been married officially 22 years plus and have been with the same man for 24 years. Do you get the idea that you have no skill at deductive reasoning? I certainly have.

        Your claims are claims of being right in what you believe. Yes you have claimed that you are absolutely right when you have claimed that others are wrong. If I say “Those who say that grapefruit are purple are wrong, they are yellow.” I am making a statement that I am right and they are wrong. You have said that other Christians are wrong. You have said that I am wrong. I have called you on their claims and have demanded evidence of these claims. You have yet to provide that evidence. You now want to claim that you were only making statements of your belief. That is not true. You have claimed that people have misused the bible and you have yet to show how you somehow “know”. When you come onto my blog and say I have to be religious and that other Christians are wrong, then yep, KD, you came here not trying to say that “I believe this and I could be wrong”. Nice try to rewrite history but it always fails in a recorded environment. You have yet to show that my logic is wrong, that I have used logical fallacies and that I have ever said I’m always right.

        Yep, you are an unpleasant Christian. I’m sure you think I’m an unpleasant atheist because I’ve called you on your false claims. You have yet to show that my logic is questionable, KD. I’m still waiting. Where are all of those logical fallacies that you’ve claimed I’ve committed? You’ve repeatedly claimed that if I just look they are there but you can’t point them out yourself.

        I don’t care if you find anything “highly offensive”. You are one more TrueChristian, defined as one more Christian who has claimed that other Christians are wrong and who can’t show that they are right. Again, you have said that other Christians have “misused” the bible, but you cannot show that your version is any more “right”. And to say that they are wrong, you have to think you are right. If you don’t think you are right, what do you have to compare their supposed “wrongness” to, KD? You can refer to atheists as “Atheists” but that’s incorrect. No one does it except people who don’t realize it is a general noun and is not capitalized. The term “TrueAtheiststm” is grammatically a title, which is not a general noun.

        Call me an “Atheist Fool” if you want. Please please do. You know, because calling someone a fool (Matthew 5). Oh but you didn’t actually call me a fool. But how interesting that this does come up so easily…

        I do demand evidence for your claims. Now, let’s look at what you said “That I must show you this evidence for there to be in fact be evidence…you realized that one of the reasons I have not cut and pasted evidence of your logical fallacies is because it is the same response I gave you when you demanded evidence of proof that God exists.” You have claimed that I have used logical fallacies and said if I read my posts I could find them and thus you could cut and paste them. You have not. Yep you have to show evidence for people to know that there is evidence. Just like in a court case, if you say that there is evidence that your client is innocent, you have to produce it for anyone to believe you. There is no evidence in front of me, so where is it, KD? Like every other theist, you claim that the evidence is right in front of me to prove your gods existence. A Muslim would tell you the same thing. Why don’t you believe them wholeheartedly as you expect me to believe you? Ah, yes, another question that you will ignore. I’m glad that you told me that is exactly what you intend to do. Please also do show me that Allah and the Wicca Goddes s does exist, KD, since you claim that they both do. I’m waiting. You’ll be hailed far and wide if you can show that they do exist. Can you? You say that you’ve never claimed that those other gods didn’t exist. So, I’m guessing you don’t believe in the Nicene Creed now? “We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of all things visible and invisible.” “Credo in unum Deum, Patrem omnipoténtem, Factórem cæli et terræ,” Hmmm?

        You need to show me that all other religions are wrong because you say that only yours is right (see above). Again, you said that other Christians misuse the bible “I see a lot of people who misuse the Bible as a source to preach their message of intolerance (i.e., religion).” . How do they do so and how do you know if you aren’t sure your ideas are right? And again, we have you lying about me. No, KD, I support my claims with evidence, I do not claim that they are true with nothing but my words. Yep, I do demand that you prove you are right and that your claim that everyone else is wrong is also true. Let’s look at one of your quotes “You see, religion is a man-made construct it was never part of God’s plan for humanity.” So, we have KD sure that he knows best. But it seems that even KD’s god has no problem with religion, “26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. 27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” – James 1.

        You’ve said “I don’t preach about following me or some sort of doctrine.” Hmmm. Doctrine – a principle or position or the body of principles in a branch of knowledge or system of belief. Aka “I want people to follow Jesus. This does entail in finding a Church, that is other followers of Jesus. It does mean reading and studying the Bible, rather than accepting what someone else says about it as true. “
        Keep going, KD.

        Now, I’m guessing you’ll be insisting that this blog is “pointless” again.

      • It’s quite comical that you believe I “nudged” my wife into picking out the same ring I had bought her. I had absolutely no input in her picking out a ring or a diamond. I asked her to look at start looking at rings and let me know what she found and would like. That is the extent of the influence I had on her decision.

        As for your marketing claim, you and your husband could test your theory. All you have to do is separately look online at rings and each of you pick one out. He chooses the ring he thinks you will pick out and you choose a ring…the great thing is you won’t have to spend any money on it to test the theory. Now remember, no input from one another about what Jewelry store website to go to or what type of diamond or ring setting to choose. See what 24 years and Jewelry store marketing makes it possible for you both to pick out the same “engagement” ring for you.

        You have a distinct advantage. You’ve been together for 24 years. My wife and I had known one another less than 1 year and only dated for 1 1/2 months when we picked out the same ring. So please test your theory and let me know the results. I’d say go ahead and you can each pick out 3 different rings/diamonds go ahead and write it down the cut/color/clarity/carat/ring setting. If any of the 3 you both choose match exactly to one the other picked out I’ll accept your claim that marketing played a role in us picking out the same ring. All 6 variables have to match identically. This stone shape/cut/color/clarity/carat/ring setting. If one ring matches 5 out of 6 variables the other puts down…it fails.

        You have cut there are 4 categories of cut. You have 5 categories of clarity. You have 5 shades of color. And you have realistically 4 choices for “approximate” carat weight. And you have lets say 20 ring settings to choose from. This alone allows for 8000 different combinations of rings. Not to mention the stone shape: Princess, Round, Pear, etc. which accounts for 10 more options. We are now up to 80,000 possibilities. And that’s limiting it to 20 ring settings. Still believe marketing plays that big of a role in picking out a diamond ring? That would make it 1/160,000 chance that two people pick out identical rings matching all 6 characteristics. A little higher than your 1 in 100 theory wouldn’t you say. By giving each of you 3 chances that reduces the probability to 1/26,667…still like your odds?

        Put your theory to the test if you are still confident in your claim that marketing played such a heavy role. However you want to test it, but any and all “diamond rings” must be picked before you show the other the options.

        Remember, no discussing rings, diamonds or cost. The test is you each sit down and pick out up to 3 diamond rings for you Vel. You pick 3 that you like and he picks out 3 for you.

        Let me know the results.

      • KD, you claim that you had “absolutely no input” in your wife’s picking out a ring or diamond. You asked her to look at rings. Again, did you tell her how much you could spend? You said she asked this. Did you tell her? Your story changes, KD. You claimed that she wanted exactly what you bought, but when I questioned that, you claimed that she was initially okay with a different ring, so by your own claim, your choice of ring failed since it did not match that 1 out of 6 attributes. Again, you may have not done anything, for I did not say you definitely did. And yes, marketing can influence you and your wife.

        Rings would fail rather dramatically for both my husband and I as a comparison since we don’t care about rings. But how about books? I know what he likes and he knows what I like. Already we have narrowed the field. Did you have absolutely no idea what your girlfriend would like? On Amazon, there are millions of books in thousands of different genres. But my husband knows what I like, so a very large percentage are already eliminated. We fell in love since we both like similar things, so we already have a common base. We could have done the same thing when we first met. So again, your claims of knowing your wife a very short time again does not make your choice of ring anything miraculous and evidence of your god’s existence. When we were growing up, we did not know each other but we did go to the same book store. We inadvertently drove each other nuts because we would be buying the same comic books and we would each miss an issue since the other bought it. Now, what was the odds that we both liked the same comic books at the same time? Oooh, it must mean that Thor is real!

        I do love how now you prate about my age and length of marriage as if you knew all along. That’s just precious.

        Unsurprisingly, your idea of how odds work are just like how ignorant creationists think they work. You ignore any other conditions that doesn’t get your supposed tornado in a junkyard. As I have shown above, we have environmental factors, that you already share much in common, you have marketing, you have an established ability to pay because your girlfriend knows your lifestyle and history, etc. For your calculations to have any meaning, you need to take those conditions into account. Did you? Evidently not since you only used the numbers about the variety of variables in the ring, not anything else.

        In creationism, the same thing happens. The creationist wants to pretend there are no conditions that influence their ludicrous claims of how it is “unimaginable” that life could have started from inorganic origins without their particular gods. They wish to pretend that the universe is utterly random when it is not. You want to claim that it is impossible for you to have gotten a ring that was similar to what your wife chose. It is not. It may be unlikely, but again, that is still no evidence for your god. Or anyone else’s god.

        Now, let’s go on to your next comment and see if you actually answered my question: This story is similar to so many others e.g. the theist claims that their god answered their prayer positively. It was offered to impress an atheist with how “real” this god was and how it did things. Would you accept this story if it invoked Allah or the Wiccan Goddess or any other of a hundred thousand gods? Why or why not?

      • You seem to have slunk back from responding to my questions on your post about my story and my post about your claim…is that because you’ve realized that you ignorantly ignored any possibility that you’ve failed?

        As for your question about the variables, yes in the comment you responded to on here I only took the diamond/ring variables. If you read my post on my blog you will see additional variables which account for marketing and preferences. I knew almost nothing about the type of ring she would like. We had never really talked about rings or jewelry.

        As for your claim that the ring I choose did not match the ring she showed/described to me, you ignore the content of the story. You hinge your argument on what she showed me and not what she described to me.

        The ring she described matched all qualities. As for your claiming that I’m referring to this event as a “miracle” please do show me where I state this exactly? Your assumption that because God answered my prayer therefore I must believe it to be a miracle is quite comical. Also a baseless assumption made from your fanciful thinking about theists.

        Now, we are talking about creationism. Please do explain how theists believe that everything is random? The Big Bang theory and Theory of Evolution are the theories that believe where we are at today is based off of randomness. Creationist theories actually are the opposite of what you say. They are based off of creating order out of chaos (i.e., randomness). Seems like someone needs to use a little more rationale when speaking their mind.

        I’m still waiting for your responses to my questions Vel. About your religious practices, how you said 1%, and about your ability to understand logical reasoning???

        Please come out of the hole you slunk into to discuss these matters? I’ll be happy to explain them further to you since you don’t seem to grasp the concepts I’ve been sharing with you? Or you can just continue to remain in your narrow minded beliefs and keep seeking attention from people who are as narrow minded as yourself.

        As for this post, the one about all religions being wrong. It doesn’t justify your beliefs practices or attitudes. You have simply tried to find a way to justify your discriminatory practices and attitudes against “religion.” Are you now beginning to see why I compared you to Westboro Baptist? Because they discriminate against others based on sexual preference.

        Maybe next time someone comments on your blog you should be a little more respectful even when they hold different beliefs than you. It’s unlikely that you will, that’s why I say you’ve justified your beliefs, practices, and attitudes (like the religions you speak out against), albeit with what you consider “perfect” logic rather than belief in gods. Either way, your justification of your b, p, a’s are no better than those of someone who uses a god to justify negative b, p, or a’s.

        It would have been better if you were 24-26 but being 47 and continuing to hold onto such unjustified b, p, and a; and trying to pass it off as you’ve come to this profound logical conclusion is utter non-sense.

        More questions for you that you likely won’t answer. Are you beginning to see the intent of my comments on this post? Or do I have to explain myself further in order for you to understand?

        Perhaps you should start a school: Club Schadenfreude’s School for Atheists Who Don’t Read Good or Use Logic Good Too.

      • Oh this is prime stuff. “you’ve ignorantly ignored any possibility that you’ve failed.” No, KD, I’ve not realized that you’ve been right along. I think you need to pray harder. I guess I haven’t answered quickly enough. Not in any hole, no excuses of how I have no time to respond, no excuses of how this blog is “pointless” and how I’m not going to post anymore. 
        I do love the variables you supposedly used to arrive at a number. Now, how did you assign values to these variables, KD? What were those values so we can see your work? Your embellishing of your story on your blog is lovely. Amazing how much needs to be added to make it seem more valid. Funny how that was all ignored until I started pointing out the problems with your intial claims.

        It was not my claim about the rings not matching. It was yours. I posted the content of your story so I rather doubt I ignored it and anyone can read it. Nice claim though.
        Oh and now you want to play the “I didn’t say exactly that” game that so many Christians love to play. “As for your claiming that I’m referring to this event as a “miracle” please do show me where I state this exactly? “ Let’s see, KD, what did you say. “The whole time I’m praying that God is leading me during this whole process and that as I’m looking at these diamonds and ring settings that He shows me the ring for the woman he desires me to marry.” So we have an event that required your god’s intervention. Now, how is the world miracle defined? Oh yes “1. an extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs; 2. an extremely outstanding or unusual event, thing, or accomplishment “ – merriam-webster.com

        And what did you say on your own blog: “Was our belief in the Almighty God, the creator of Heaven and Earth, a central figure in our relationship and our decision making process? Absolutely. Was their divine intervention? Well that depends on what you believe…” Oh aren’t you coy! And “Her engagement ring stands as a testament to our Faith and to God’s proof of His love and what it means to listen and obey God’s voice.” Restated here as “My wife’s wedding ring is more than a token of our love for one another, more than a symbol of our commitment to one another. Her ring, for me, is evidence of God’s love and grace. Of God’s promises and His answer to prayers.”

        Please do deny things, KD. Doesn’t matter to me. It’s between you and well, you. You’ve insisted that it wasn’t coincidence. Indeed, you went to entertaining lengths to show how impossible it would be for this to have happened. Shucks, it wasn’t a miracle at all, was it? It was indeed just coincidence, no god needed, no evidence of your god answering prayers or love or grace.

        Yep, I mentioned creationism. I was not as clear as intended. My apologies. I should have clarified that theists want to pretend that the universe is utterly random when it comes to evolution and the BBT. I know that they do not believe that the universe is random, they think that their god, whichever it is, is in complete control. What I said was this: “Unsurprisingly, your idea of how odds work are just like how ignorant creationists think they work. You ignore any other conditions that doesn’t get your supposed tornado in a junkyard. As I have shown above, we have environmental factors, that you already share much in common, you have marketing, you have an established ability to pay because your girlfriend knows your lifestyle and history, etc. For your calculations to have any meaning, you need to take those conditions into account. Did you? Evidently not since you only used the numbers about the variety of variables in the ring, not anything else.

        In creationism, the same thing happens. The creationist wants to pretend there are no conditions that influence their ludicrous claims of how it is “unimaginable” that life could have started from inorganic origins without their particular gods. They wish to pretend that the universe is utterly random when it is not. You want to claim that it is impossible for you to have gotten a ring that was similar to what your wife chose. It is not. It may be unlikely, but again, that is still no evidence for your god. Or anyone else’s god.”
        The BBT and the TOE are not based on randomness, but creationists want to pretend that so they can come up with ludicrous statistics on how unlikely it is for life to originate (see tornado in junkyard/Hoyle’s Fallacy here: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Hoyle%27s_fallacy ). You really should learn about things you are sure are wrong. Then you’d known what you were talking about. The BBT seems to be constrained by what we know about physical laws. The TOE definitely is. Things happen predictably and thus, not randomly. We have no Dr. Seussian creatures popping up in environments they are not suited for.

        And you haven’t a clue what randomness is, do you? You claim that “order out of chaos” is (i.e. means that is) randomness. It isn’t. When something is random, it is without direction, aim or course.

        Creationist myths are not theories since they cannot be tested. They are baseless claims that have nothing supporting them except stories that again have nothing showing that they actually happened. Theist creationist cannot agree on what they want to claim “really” happened. Should first creation account be considered the real one or the second? Should they be considered literal or metaphor? Did the god/s use evolution or not? Was earth only formed a few millennia ago or billions of years? Since there is no evidence for any variant of these, there is no reason to accept any of them, be they yours or some other religion’s claims.

        I have shown that I have no religious practices here: http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/not-so-polite-dinner-conversation-again-why-speak-out/ just Ctrl+F and search for the terms religious and religion. You’ll see all of my responses.
        I have answered the 1% nonsense here: http://thebussstop.wordpress.com/2014/01/12/less-than/comment-page-1/#comment-35
        And I have shown that I do indeed know a fair amount about logic and logical reasoning, above. Your turn: This story is similar to so many others e.g. the theist claims that their god answered their prayer positively. It was offered to impress an atheist with how “real” this god was and how it did things like answer your prayers. Would you accept this story if it invoked Allah or the Wiccan Goddess or any other of a hundred thousand gods? Why or why not?

        And aw, more insults. It’s so worth it to see them, KD.

        All religions are wrong until they can be shown correct and that they reflect reality. I’ve been waiting for you, and others to do this. Can you? If something is wrong and harmful, then I have all of the justification I need to stand against them and demonstrate that they are wrong. There is nothing wrong with having some sense of discrimination (in this case defined as “to notice and understand that one thing is different from another thing : to recognize a difference between things”) on that which is wrong *if* you can support that it is indeed wrong/harmful/ludicrous. You claim that I discriminate against religion like the Westboro Baptists are discriminatory against sexual preference. Hmm, let’s look at that attempt to draw similarities. I point out that your religion has nothing to support its claims and provide evidence that shows your myths could not have happened as claimed and that your god cannot exist as described. You have yet to provide any evidence for either god or biblical events. The WBC says that soldiers are killed because the US tolerates homosexuals. They provide no evidence of this causation. So, KD, please do explain how I am no better than the WBC and show examples. I write a blog about how religion fails, and this is discriminatory how? again, you’ve said that you somehow know that others “misuse” your bible, so it seems that you think you have a means to discriminate too. What else do you think I do to be discriminatory? But of course, you could go back to ignoring my requests just like you said you do.

        You deserve no respect, KD. You gave that up when you first lied. Your beliefs deserve no respect because there is nothing that says they are right and everything else is wrong. You could stamp your feet and demand that I respect the ancient Greek religion and I would still have no reason to do so. You have claimed that there are other gods but of course now will not support that claim with evidence.

        I do love your attempt to invoke my age. That’s just great, KD. Still waiting for your evidence that your claims are true. Yep, I’m 47 and no, I don’t agree with what KD claims is true and what KD claims exists with no existence. Your claims of my logical fallacies are as well supported as your claims of your god.

        I’ve answered your questions, KD. More lies on your part. And again with the baseless insults! Just perfect. Again, please do show where I don’t use “good logic” or that I “don’t read good”, KD. The fact that I can show you wrong and that I disagree with you is no evidence of either claim by you. It is wonderful to see you having nothing else better to respond with.

      • Here, I’ll make your marketing claim even easier for you. Go to a Jewelry store website…pull up a page that has like 20-25 rings on it. Choose one and then ask your husband to look at the 25 rings…give him no hints or clues and ask him to pick the one he believes you chose.

        That’s a 1 in 20 or 1 in 25 chance he’ll pick the same ring as you. Do you think he can do it?

        Like I said, the ring that my wife and I both chose independently of one another had far more than 20-25 choices as I’ve already explained in my previous comment.

        While it’s not random like winning the lottery, you do understand that your “marketing” claim ignores that both of us picked out identically matching rings independent of what the other picked. And while she showed me a ring that didn’t match her desired ring/diamond combination the ring I had bought matched it exactly. Do I really have to go over this again with you to demonstrate why your claim against my story are unsupported?

        You got one thing right in your comments. You are very ignorant on your claim. Again, you can try and rationalize or come up with pathetic attempts to “discredit” my story, or should I be like you and call you a liar. Because apparently you seem to believe that you know the story of my wife’s engagement ring better than I do. Or that in some way I must be fabricating the details by “adding” additional comments to explain it in further detail. You may believe that you are being clever in your responses but you actually sound quite foolish.

        As for reading carefully, you have very evidently not demonstrated this. What you have demonstrated by your cutting and pasting is that you can cut and paste something I said. As for your understanding of what was said and your responses to my comments they are wildly far fetched from being remotely close to the intended meaning.

      • Again, KD, your test again doesn’t show anything other than my husband does know what I like. No god needed. And still plenty of factors that you did your best to ignore in order to make up a “miracle” for yourself.

        I am glad that you do realize that your choice and her choice were not random. You did not pick out identically matching rings if she initially picked out one that did not match the one you got. You said that she was okay with a diamond of a lesser quality. IS this true or not?

        I never said that I was ignorant in my claim. So again, you are lying about what I “got right in your [my] comments”. Nice one! Your story is one more bit of glurge created to try to show your god exists. I can show exactly why your story is nothing more than coincidence at best and a complete fabrication at worst. Both instances show that your story does not support that your god exists.

        And again, I do like when you claim I’m “foolish”. It’s so fun to watch you again insist that I have not read your post carefully, and again you cannot demonstrate this to be true other than saying I’m somehow “wrong”. You have claimed, like many TrueChristians, that my responses are “wildly far fetched from being remotely close to the intended meaning.” But you have yet to show this true, just like you have yet to support any of the baseless claims you have made about me. Again, where did I say anything about “1%”? Where have I made those logical fallacies that you claim?

        Let’s go on to your next post to see if you’ve answered question: “This story is similar to so many others e.g. the theist claims that their god answered their prayer positively. It was offered to impress an atheist with how “real” this god was and how it did things. Would you accept this story if it invoked Allah or the Wiccan Goddess or any other of a hundred thousand gods? Why or why not?”

      • And a hypothetical question…

        On 9-11, you have 3 firefighters. One is Christian, one is Muslim, and one is an atheist. Each are first responders and saved 100 people from the Towers before the towers collapsed. Are their actions equal despite the difference of their beliefs or reasons they became firefighters?

        You seem to be arguing that a Christian or Muslim firefighter in the above scenario would be causing harm because they believe in a god. Of course, now you will just say that you’re not arguing that at all but about what their belief teaches. If the Christian became a firefighter because he believed God wanted him to, or same for the Muslim, does it make a difference in their actions? Are not all of their actions “good” or “positive?”

        As for showing you proof or evidence of where you make mistakes in your arguments. I am not required to show you, even when you ask. The proof and evidence is there whether I point it out to you or not, you simply don’t see it. Likely because you want to believe you’ve raised a perfect argument against theism and the belief in god. Or that somehow your argument justifies your beliefs practices and attitudes…it doesn’t.

      • And my goodness, another question from KD, but when I ask questions, I get no answer or evidence.

        The actions of the firefighters are equal in that they helped people. Their intentions may not be equal if they had ulterior motives other than simply helping people. Let’s take a look at saving someone and the motives behind it. Luke Skywalker wanted to save Princess Leia because he thought he was in trouble and needed help. Han Solo decided to help save Leia because he was offered money. Who is the selfish one here? Were Han’s intentions harmful if he only cares about money? Was his actions good or positive if he only wanted cash? The results of the actions would be positive and good; the actions themselves?

        I am not arguing that a Christian or Muslim firefighter would be causing harm if they saved people. Wow, but you are totally desperate to try to claim that. If they were only helping people because they would get a reward, do you see how that can cause harm? To require a fee to do something? I would rescue someone without being promised a reward. I would do it from empathy. I do not need a reward. The religions of Christianity and Islam promise a reward if one believes in a certain way. Of course, what that way is becomes the problem since they do not agree, not between religions or between sects of both religions.

        KD, I don’t know your history but you do have to show evidence for your claims. You have to show them all of the time, when you make any claim. You are indeed not required to show me evidence to support your false claims against me, but that’s the only way anyone will believe those claims. You can rant and rave, call me whatever you’d like and it makes no difference if you cannot prove it true. Just claiming that the proof and evidence is there doesn’t make it magically so. It’s like claiming that Queen Elizabeth II is a reptilian alien and insisting that the proof and evidence is there, but people just “don’t see it”. Those people who claim such things don’t have proof or evidence either, KD, just like you. You find yourself in excellent company, KD. I congratulate you.

        And what beliefs and attitudes do I think my argument “justifies”, KD? Hmmm? I do so want to know what a psychic person can see in my mind. Really, if you can tell me what I think, you are certainly being wasted in the job you’re in.

      • Although, further Google Translate research shows you likely meant the title of you blog to mean…Glee Club. Wildly different translations depending on how one takes the German you are using. Club Schaden Freude = Club Joy Harm, Club Schadenfreude = Club Gloating, and Clubscadenfreude = Glee Club…just saying you gotta love the German language!

      • For someone who was leaving and still can’t show any logical fallacies on my part because he’s too busy, you sure do post a lot. Again, your actions bely your words.

        ah, you can’t spell either. Schadenfreude, KD. Not Scadenfreude. I guess to your thinking “lie” and “lye” must mean the same thing if you want to make up such nonsense. Why, all Christians then must hate a nice soft slipper fabric, satin, rather than a magical being, satan, by your “logic”. :) How nice.

        Gloating: to observe or think about something with triumphant and often malicious satisfaction, gratification, or delight

        Now, if you think I have a valid reason to gloat, hmmmmm

        Schadenfreude: enjoyment obtained from the troubles of others

        Gloating is satisfaction that can be from my own actions *or* from the actions (including the troubles) of others. Since I do not have any malice toward you, this definition is about half-right.

        You didn’t do too badly, KD, until you decided that you must claim that I “likely meant the title” of my blog to mean a glee club. From a decent reference to something showing that you might be afraid of glee clubs and think that calling my blog a glee club is an insult. I have been in choirs and don’t find being a glee club something bad. I can muse about why you might find it bad.

        You’ve give me even more schadenfreude at your ineptitude at attempting to be insulting.

        Oh and for Google translate thinking I mean something else? No, KD, that’s not how search engines work. It thought *you* were in error, as the person looking for the translatoin and might have mean scadenfreude instead of schadenfreude. It gives possible alternatives, not what is “likely”. Nice attempt to appeal to authority.

      • here is one more quote that shows that you do indeed know what unconditional means and how it should be used:

        “You also misrepresent my comments of unconditional love and acceptance. Like my invitation to view the video of my daughter…I invited unconditionally the opportunity to meet my family on a more personal level.”

      • I’ve already shown you that I know all of the definitions of religion, KD. Repeating this is amusing, but does nothing to show that you don’t follow a religion and that somehow atheists do. And oh my, capitalization the word “religion”. I have no idea why you would do that other than to again try to cast aspersions on that activity that you partake in.

        I do enjoy seeing one more TrueChristian make claims about atheists that they cannot support. Please do show where atheists worship humanity. Yes, I know you said “possible worship”, but we both know that you want to claim that we worship humanity. Please do show how me, an atheist, worships humanity since you wish to claim that all atheists believe in the same things. Be assured that this atheist knows exactly what she thinks and why, belying your “wonderings” if atheists know anything about themselves. In that you want to expand the definition of worship, please do show where I have an “excessive admiration for someone”. I also don’t put atheism as something that I place supreme importance in. I happily have my love for my husband in that place of supreme importance. As a former Christian, I know exactly where Jesus Christ put concern for one’s family….

        You also seem to confuse the terms faith and trust. Faith, as we know your bible says, is “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” I do not have such a thing in humanity, and I can comfortably say that no atheists I have met have this either. I do have trust in humanity that they will usually do the benevolent thing, and I also know that some will not. That is trust, based on observation of reality. So again, we see that your claims are baseless and simply made up to try to claim that atheists are just like you.

        Considering how you have attempted to claim you do not have a religion, I have no problem in showing that you need lessons in critical reasoning and logic. You make baseless claims consistently. You have stated this “Atheists tend to make as many logical fallacies as theists during their arguments, they just irrationally believe that they aren’t.” So, prove this claim, KD. As it stands it is a baseless claim by a TrueChristian, who again wants to pretend that everyone is just like him.

        You also try to claim that “As for critical reasoning, taking a portion of what someone says and defining what you believe they are saying is a poor display of critical reasoning.” Where have I done that, KD? I have indeed pulled your very own quotations from your blog. You have yet to show that I am wrong in what I have determined you are saying. Critical reasoning consists of analyzing the source, context, and determining what the logical result would be. Please be my guest to tell me exactly what you meant by those quotes I have selected. I have no problem if you can show that I was wrong. No one is perfect, including me. If you wish for me to support my conclusions, I can pull more quotes from your blog. Do you wish me to do that? Or will you insist that no matter how many I pull, that I still am wrong? Then, it’s rather pointless and I have no problem with our readers reading your blog on their own and drawing their own conclusions based on your own words.

        I don’t care if anyone else thinks I have won or lost an argument. I am content to be assured of my arguments and have shown how your claims are wrong. If you want to claim that I am “refusing to listen”, that is your prerogative, but as can be seen, I have listened to your arguments, have analyzed them and have presented where they have failed. For example, you have claimed it is “religion” at fault, and that Christianity is not a religion. I have shown that it is. You have claimed that you do not think you are right about your beliefs, and I have shown that you do indeed think your beliefs are the only correct ones. I’ve debated many TrueChristians before and I know how denial of reality is very much part of their lives, from their belief in a magical being that has no evidence to support it, to making false claims that I am not “listening” because if I just “honestly” listened, then I would agree with you.

        And ah, so concerned with the size of the ladle of molten iron. They are not called “vats”. The only ladle of molten of iron that exists is that which you find in a iron or steel mill (please note context to determine appropriate definition) and are called ladles. I am content to see you avoid answering the question to quibble about the size of the ladle. I note that a human cannot “jump into” a cup sized ladle of anything, so your rather silly reply is meaningless. Incidentally, ladles in an iron/steel mill hold quite enough to kill you, even the smaller ones. It still stands that I am 100% correct. But let’s take another example: I know that if a human drinks a liter of prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) of 5000 PPM concentration, they will die. Now, your bible says that this won’t happen if you believe hard enough. It’s 100% wrong, and I am 100% right.

        KD, I did not say that religion was responsible for “the harm in the world”. I have said that they do more harm than good and you have created a strawman argument, intentionally or unintentionally, by claiming I have said something I have not. You have yet to show that any religion is “right” in what it claims. There is no logical reason to assume that if there were no religions that there would be the same amount of harm in the world. To have a logical reason you need to support it. Why would this be, KD? Do you have evidence that humans are worse without religion? Now, here’ s where most TrueTheists will try to invoke Hitler, Pol Pot, Mao, Stalin, etc, and will merrily forget that these men were megalomaniacs and of various theistic/atheistic tendencies.

        But…. You say that “Humanity is responsible for the harm done.” Now, I do agree with you in a way. Humanity is responsible for inventing gods and doing harm in their name. If there were gods, we would see their hand in everything, including evidence for events they supposedly caused and controlled, but we do not. We do see humanity’s though. I also have not claimed that humanity would get over its stupidty and live happily ever after as long as we did not have religion. Another false claim by you. You seem to like to argue against a figment of an atheist you have made up. A real atheist isn’t that, KD. You’ll always fail when you refuse to acknowledge that atheists do know what they are talking about and why they conclude that there are no gods.

        You have claimed that all religions except yours are wrong. “I do not believe the Bible to teach religion but a way of life with a creator God who loves and desires humanity to choose him as opposed to doing it their own way.”and “Life is about God, life is from God, and life is to God. God is everything.” You are sure that the bible is correct and that what it says is correct the way *you* interpret it e.g. “God want’s all people to know Him and to treat everyone we meet with the respect they deserve.” (which can be shown to be wrong by citing scripture too), that the belief in Jesus Christ as savior is the only way not to be damned to an eternity of torture/death in a lake of fire. Now, if you don’t believe in that, I want to see you say that.

        My criticism is against *you*, KD, and the religion you claim to follow. It is not against “religion” so you can avoid responsibility. You have claimed “You see, religion is a man-made construct it was never part of God’s plan for humanity.” When we can see that religion was indeed evidently intended by this god, if one believes the bible’s claims. Indeed the books from Paul, have all about how to a “3. Action or conduct indicating a belief in, reverence for, and desire to please, a divine ruling power; the exercise or practice of rites or observations implying this. 4. A particular system of faith and worship. 5. Recognition on the part of man of some higher unseen power in control of his destiny, and entitled to obedience, reverence, and worship; the general mental and moral attitude resulting from this belief, with reference to its effect upon the individual or the community; personal or general acceptance of this feeling as a standard of spiritual and practical life.””

        You claim that you think some religions teach positive values and are good for humanity. Which are those, KD? As a Christian, do you believe that acceptance of JC is the only way to save humanity? You have said “The question we must ask ourselves when looking in the mirror everyday is “Am I following Jesus or not?”” This certainly seems that you think that JC is the only way. Which religions are the ones that teach negative and are bad for humanity?
        Oh and just how does one follow Jesus correctly? Is it the JC that says that anyone who helps someone else is fine in his eyes? Or is it the JC that says that those who do not accept him as king should be brought before him and killed? Should we accept JC who said that *all* of his father’s laws are still in force, include killing people for working on the sabbath (and when is that actually?) or do we follow the version that modern Christians have invented that allows them to ignore the hundreds of commandments that are inconvenient? Should we accept JC who said that everyone is equal or Paul who said women are second class citizens, only to be saved with childbirth and who said that various types of people deserve death? Which version have atheists supposedly taken to do this: “cheap knock-off version of following Jesus and tell others its the cure to religion”?

        You have claimed “No where did I ever claim that I am a “TrueChristian” and that only my version of Christianity is correct “ Here again, we see you claim that anyone who does not interpret the bible like you is wrong “It takes time and effort to understand the Bible. I see a lot of people who misuse the Bible as a source to preach their message of intolerance (i.e., religion).” And here “Jesus gives us a choice, follow Him or don’t follow Him? It’s as simple as that. “ Where you are certain that free will is the TrueChristian way, not predestination, or any other version of Christianity, all just as well supported by scripture.
        Why would you have been a “very different person” than you are today, KD, if you hadn’t accepted the religion you were brought up with in this culture? I always hear these claims of how “awful” people were before they accepted a religion. It makes a lovely story. It also begs the question why your god doesn’t do this for everyone, and eliminates a lot of grief in the world. How much harm did you supposedly cause before you found this god? And ho much could it have limited if it treated everyone as a Doubting Thomas and provided the evidence that it must know (being omniscient and all) that everyone needs. I suspect your answer will be “free will” but your bible does not support that as your god’s MO.

        You ignore parts of the bible you don’t like. I can show that, or have you killed people for working on the Sabbath? You claim that you “take the time to make sense of them”, and again that’s what all theists say they do when they come to the conclusion that their answers are the only right ones. I can also say that I have taken the time to make sense of the stories in the bible, know original terms and how things have been translated and I have gotten an entirely different answer than you. I’m sure that Fred Phelps has also taken the time to make sense of the bible and has come up with different answers than you. So has those people who believe in universal salvation, who believe in predestination, etc. Each claims to know what their god “really meant” in light of the current culture and unsurprisingly all of these “truths” change from generation to generation. You claim to know what your god wants, and then claim that “I’m not the judge, God is.” But all you have is what you claim that this god wants, again without any more evidence than what another theist has. You have claimed that other Christians are wrong. I’ve repeatedly quoted you insisting that you and only you are right. Just look upwards to the preceding paragraphs. You have said that others “misuse” the bible, and therefore are claiming that you do not.

        KD, you have not presented your claims as only thoughts and possibilities. There are no qualifications of what you say indicating this. What I read, and what I have quoted, show a certainty of what you think is the “truth”. You may not mean it to read like that, but when you say “God is X.” not “God may be X.” that reads as your being sure of what you claim. If you believed that one just has to help others, be honest, live simply, etc, that’s one thing. If you say “you must follow Jesus’ way” that’s something else entirely, especially since we have various concepts of Jesus all found in the same complilation of books all claiming to be the “truth”.

        This claiming of “truth” is what I find most harmful since these claims are unsupportable and that they are used to give reason to actions.
        My friends cover the full range of Christian, to pagan theist, to agnostic to atheist. So, say it’s about 25% each for those very broad categories. And yes, KD, I do allow for competing worldviews, as you can see on my blog where I let people like you post. However, I do not disrespect my friends by not holding them accountable for what they claim. You make a claim, you support it, especially if it has a likelyhood of causing harm. And I just have to laugh with your attempts at assumption that I simply must be such a ignorant, thoughtless person since I’m an atheist. No, KD, I do not accept worldviews like mine without question. I constantly look for reasons I may be wrong because if I am wrong and reality is something different, I want to know. Something that you seem to yet accept is that atheism is nothing more than lack of belief in god/s. I have gone after other atheists with hammer and tongs if we disagree on other things. And I do not rely on herd popularity to keep a belief. I have reached the conclusion of atheism since there is no evidence for your god or any others. I ask you, how have you decided that you believe in this particular god and not another? Consider those reasons, and then consider that I very likely hold those same reasons or similar ones for just one more god than you.

  2. I respect your beliefs about the human nature, but I disagree with your approach in trying to “disprove” religion. If it can’t be proven, how could it be disproven? All anyone from a scientific viewpoint can really claim is that they have not been able to find enough evidence to support it. A lack of evidence currently doesn’t “prove” that it is false.
    And while I agree that much of religion demonstrates some of the negative characteristics you explained, I believe that it is ignorant to claim that every religion has to be blamed for the mistakes of all other religions. By lumping every crazy belief together, you set up a straw man of what any particular individual’s beliefs might be. That doesn’t seem like a scientific approach to me.
    I’m okay if you don’t believe in a religion. But I hope you would at least respect the beliefs of others, realizing that science is one of many methods of finding truth (the scientific approach coming from the Ancient Greeks).

    • Well, analternative method, it’s no problem in disproving the claims of religion. Let’s take one of the claims of Christianity, that there was a magical flood that their god made happen. There is not one scrap of evidence for this. The lack of evidence *and* evidence to the contrary, show that the claims of the bible are wrong, at least in one instance. Add this to all of the times that claims cannot be shown, and where we can show evidence that shows something else happened instead.

      That’s why theists have to create vaguer and vaguer versions of their gods. An attribute claimed for a god must be supported and that is where theists get into trouble. And how long must theists claim that the evidence will be found? Thousands of years? That’s what you are looking at when it comes to Christianity and they’ve failed. I’ve investigated a lot of religions and they all fail in their claims, from Asatru to Wicca to Zoroastrianism.

      I’m not blaming every religion for the failures of others. I am blaming each religion for its own failures. Every belief is “crazy” to everyone who doesn’t share it. Shinto is as silly as Christianity is as silly as Judaism is as silly as Buddhism is as silly as Islam is as silly as Wicca ad infinititum. If you can come up with one religion that isn’t “crazy”, I ask to share it and tell me why it isn’t “crazy”. I will say that you have created a strawman yourself when you have claimed I have made an argument that I have not and have made a much easier argument to confront.

      I can show evidence that an elephant exists. I may not be able to prove it in the sense of mathematical proof, but are you going to tell me an elephant doesn’t exist since I can’t? I also can show evidence that a silver tea set doesn’t orbit Zeta Reticuli, but I can’t visit there to make 100% sure. Are you going to tell me then one must exist? And as my husband has kibitzed at the moment, can you show me that Xenu didn’t send aliens to earth in spaceships shaped like DC-9s, strapped them to volcanoes and detonated atomic bombs to allow their souls to infest humans? Or is that just too silly to accept as possible? (that’s the core belief of Scientology, in case you didn’t know)

      I would ask you, what do you think a “scientific approach” is? It seems that you may not quite understand what the scientific method is. I have no need to respect nonsense and I do not respect religion ever. I can respect people, but I do not respect baseless claims of “truth” when they all fail. And the scientific method was in its infancy with the Ancient Greeks. You may want to take a look at what it consists of now. You claim that other methods have found “truth”. What are those methods? And what “truths” have they found?

    • There is no ‘alternative method’ for seperating the true from the false but reason and unambiguous evidence. None. The scientific method just it systematic.

      I lump every crazy belief together with every religon(or the false claim the Christianity is not a religion…which is just bold faced special pleading) under the simple fact that when fantastical claims are made, I expect hard evidence. This isn’t a straw man…it is what they have in common: A claim that flies in the face of what I see day to day and no unambiguous evidence.
      Ghosts, Ufo abductions, Psychic powers, Jesus…all the same.

    • My experiences do not negate that religions are full of lies. My “approach” is well understood by me. If it has limitations, then you are asked to explain them, not rely on some link.

      I will ask you again “You claim that other methods have found “truth”. What are those methods? And what “truths” have they found?”

      Can you answer this, AAM? What are these truths you claim are found by other methods? I would say that it seems that your claims of other ways of “knowing” are as false as any other person claiming magical knowledge. You cannot show these truths when asked directly, it seems.

  3. …many theists want to claim that they have no religion, only a “relationship”.

    Tell evangelicals you’re friends with an invisible six-foot rabbit and they’ll call you insane. Tell them you’re friends with a cosmic Jewish zombie and no one bats an eye. :)

  4. Looks like your new friends could use a lesson or two in how to think critcally, how to form a logical conclusion….and how to not commit logical fallacies. (which I suppose would follow from learning how to form a logical conclusion) Having seen the magnitude of the condition, I seriously doubt any improvements in the near future.

    • They certainly could use an education in how to think critically. Unfortunately, many people don’t get that and default to believing what they have been told by people that they have some reason to trust, no matter if those people cannot support their claims.

      It is very tempting and addicting to believe that one has magical secret knowledge of the world’s “truths”, that one has a magical invisible friend that will do everything for your benefit and that will change reality to your whims (aka prayers). It is probably one of the hardest things in the world to realize that people have lied to you, whether intentionally or unintentionally out of ignorance. Most theists have so much of their self-worth wrapped up in their beliefs that is it very hard for them to admit that they are wrong.

      • It reminds me of the whole aspect that conspiracy nuts now attack the term ‘conspiracy theorist/nut’ as just a pejoritive term used by people who automatically and unquestioningly believe the ‘official story’

        rather than, say, actually come up with a reasonable argument

  5. True Christians unite:

    John MacArthur Sends 500,000,000 Charismatics to Hell

    The sermon (Love the top-page slogan: “No hyper-preterist heresy here.”) from 18:10 on is worth watching just for the vitriol. He likens charismatics to deceivers, false teachers, money-making opportunists, pagans, blasphemers and demon worshipers. Also notable is his complete lack of compassion/empathy for Aaron’s sons, Nadab and Abihu (Levitus 10), and the people slaughtered for worshiping God the “wrong” way in Exodus 32.

    • Thanks, Ron. That’s a perfect example of how TrueChristians are always sure that those “others” are wrong and will, of course, go to hell for being “heretics”. It also shows how “shocked” other TrueChristians are that someone would say that they are wrong, when failing to notice that they do the exact same thing.

  6. They have been conditioned to believe that doubt is the road to hell. Plus the fact that their entire social network is church, and people of the church. 1.They fear hell. 2.They fear losing their social network. 3.They fear education, education leads to to doubt (see #1) 4. They fear death. (which is odd considering that they are in a death cult) Fear apparently is a powerful tool, couple that with CD and DKE and you got yourself a fundamentalist.

    • Well, with KD, he supposedly does doubt. He’s claimed that he only hopes his choice of religion is the right one. So, he may honestly doubt or he may be blowing smoke to appear more reasonable.

      The fear of hell, losing ones friends and admitting that one is wrong is very powerful. It is, I agree, odd that Christians fear death as much as they do. I’ve occasionally thought it was a symptom of an unconscious acknowledgement that they in fact aren’t sure at all that their myths are true.

  7. Pingback: Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – a primer on what you might not want to say in an online discussion, Baker’s Dozen edition | Club Schadenfreude

  8. Pingback: Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – a Christian commenter comes slinking back, and a question: why believe one and not the others? | Club Schadenfreude

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