I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, 'wouldn't it be much worse if life *were* fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them?' So now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe. – M. Cole
Hello from under Winter Storm Petra! We have about 5 inches of snow and we’re supposed to get ice on top of that.
If you’ve been following my blog, you may know that I dabble in art, specific alcohol inks. Here are two pieces. The top is a lap / bed tray (the kind with little legs) that I found at a thrift store. It was originally a pale blonde wood, which I painted black. The bottom was white melamine, a nice slick surface for the inks to flow around on. After they dried, I sealed it and then put a layer of resin on top of it for durability.
The second is a lazy susan I found on the same thrift store adventure. It is also ink and protected with resin. My one cat, Tezcatlipoca, is investigating it.
Let us all welcome “The Majesty’s Men”, a Christian website that seems be, well, interesting. This is from their gravatar page. Their website hasn’t been verified by ICANN yet. They do have quite a nice logo, if rather a bit over the top, something like I’d expect in a Dan Brown novel or perhaps on Warhammer 40K power armor.
This was bouncing around in my head while I couldn’t sleep last night.
The claim that atheists *must* be nihilists or aren’t being atheists “correctly” – this fails since “dude”, and WLC (William Lane Craig, a very inept conservative Christian apologist and philosopher), have yet to show that subjective morality or meaning in life is somehow not as good as claims of “objective” morality. It also fails since Christianity has no objective morality either. The idea of good and bad is not separate from their god, which it should be to be objective. They only have might equals right.
The claim that Jesus Christ must be historical – There is no evidence for magic/supernatural/divine events or beings. WLC fails hilariously at this when his entire basis for his claims is that an empty tomb existed. He can’t show that the tomb exists nor that it was ever magically empty. The possible itinerant deluded rabbi is not the being that Christians claim to worship. “dude” and conservative Christians are so desperate for any evidence that their magic friend exists, “dude” et al accept claims that do a fair job in showing that their magic being never existed at all. Something else entirely did, like every other supposed magic event in the bible.
The claim that complex things must have creators but that this god doesn’t need a creator – this one is great since it’s again nothing more than special pleading. “dude” and his fellow believers have to claim that this god is intelligent, can affect this world, has to exist outside this world, cares about each and every believer, controls the universe in detail, but somehow this being is “simple” to fit the definition conservative christians invented in their need to have a job for their god (Plantinga’s argument that God is simple because his god has no “parts” and is a ghost is one of the most ridiculous). This is why Dawkin’s ultimate 747 works; it shows the utter contradiction in what theists claim. This is where claims that Dawkins and other atheists don’t study the “sophisticated theology” correctly fail so well. Those claims are nothing more than the desperate moving of goalposts by Christians who fancy themselves more intelligent and intellectual than their fellow Christians and anyone who doesn’t agree with them.
The claim that philosophy, aka a baseless opinion usually started as “what if people were like this, then “x” should be true”, reflects reality – This is a belief that a lot of freshmen in college fall into when they find someone who agrees with them and they seem to be an authority figure. Occasionally a philosophy does get something right. However, how many philosophies have died because reality doesn’t reflect them? Most, and new ones keep being invented, like that anti-natalist nonsense. And what evidence do the philosophers have that their claims are true, for instance WLC’s philosophy about atheists must be nihilists? Very little if any at all; but they sure hope that people will agree with them and give them the external validation they crave. There are atheists who are nihilists but there is nothing to show that atheism causes nihilism or requires nihilism.
Indeed, my very existence and the existence of happy atheists all over the world, shows that these Christians’ philosophical navel gazing is simply wrong. It seems that since many theists try to claim that anything that can be imagined has to exist e.g. the ontological argument that if their version of a creator god can be imagined it must exist, that they believe that their thoughts *all* have to be true. That they don’t seem to understand that human can imagine many things that are not real is rather bizarre version of solipsism aka anything I can think of is real and everyone else has to be wrong.
In the end, all theists like “dude” has is that he wants to believe something. He’ll accept anything he thinks supports the idea that he has the secret to how the universe works, and he is best friends with its creator.
This weekend was another cooking weekend. Here in the US, we have a three day weekend this weekend for President’s Day, a holiday that was to cover both Washington’s and Lincoln’s birthdays.
In addition to beef stew (our recipe can be found here), I made a lemon chiffon cake and also tried a new bread recipe.
Chiffon cakes should get more attention. They are essentially a cake with a lot of eggs, similar to angel food cakes, but they have oil and egg yolks in them. They are richer than angelfood, and moister. For a comparison that seems like damning with faint praise, they have the texture of a fresh Twinkie (a snack cake here in the States), with a moist spongy texture. The recipe I used was from The Cake and Pie Bible Rose by Rose Beranbaum. I am generally loath to publish recipes in books, but if a friend asks me for it, I can share.
You’ll see that it was made in an angelfood cake pan, one with the center post and bottom that is separate. I hadn’t even known that those existed until my husband told me his mother had one. I found one at a flea market. The batter is a little looser than angelfood batter so you can see the cake stalagmites that formed on the bottom from the batter seeping out a bit. This type of cake, like angelfood, has to be cooled inverted. Of course a chunk stuck to the pan. Oh well.
The bread was this, Tuscan Bread with Herbs. It is a fairly wet dough, and it took about ten minutes of mixing/kneading in my kitchenaid. The dough got a silky sheen to it once done. For some reason, it took forever to get any color to it on the crust. The crust was a little hard on the bottom, since I baked it on a pizza stone. But it went very well with the stew to soften the crust in the broth.
We watched Priest last night on the SYFY channel. Not a bad movie and I really like Paul Bettany (I first saw him in A Knight’s Tale, which I love) and Karl Urban ( I saw him first in the Xena series). Plot holes that one could drive a star destroyer through, but so many fantasy movies do that. Also watched a part of an episode of Riverdale, this bizarre Buffy like version of the old Archie comics. They had a role-playing game called “Griffins and Gargoyles” that was taking over people’s minds. It was like watching a Chick tract (a very dumb conservative Christian who wrote lies as religious tracts). Of course, this world has real demons so it makes a little more sense.
Two possums are now visiting our yard. That’s what I get for making a box for feral kitties to sleep in. 🙂
(as always, if you follow me for food, wine and art posts, you may want to skip this post. Any “not polite dinner conversation” posts are about politics and religion)
I haven’t poked fun at Christian attacking their fellows as being wrong in a while. It’s such a good way to know that Christianity is nonsense, I’m going to indulge myself.
I’ve been crossing swords with “dude” who is a classic Christian who is quite sure that he and only he has the right version of Christianity. This whole thing started when he made the usual claim that atheists simply must be nihilists. I found his post on one of my common tours around the WordPress community looking at posts that mention atheism or atheists. He used no more than William Lane Craig’s argument, which fails as soon as you know that there are atheists who aren’t nihilists e.g. most of us. It ends up that this claim is nothing more than a baseless assertion, since neither WLC or “dude” can show why the lack of belief in a god must require people to think that life has no meaning. And yes, they of course try to excuse their failure by saying that there is somehow a difference between “subjective” meaning and one given by their version of their god. To watch a conservative Christian insist that they and they alone know how an atheist should “really” act is rather pitiable. It’s such a need for making up reasons why said Christian is ever so better than anyone else. Alas, a happy content atheist is all that is needed to know that their claims are wrong. A glass of wine, a good meal with friends is all that is needed to show that at least some Christians lie.
We ended up with him trying to insult me and then when called on it, he offered just the cutest excuses on how he didn’t “necessarily” insult me. It’s always fun when it seems that these Christians think that their god is dumber than the average human to believe that. I’m happily paying out as much rope as he wants to hang himself with it (figuratively of course).
As my title says us atheists haven’t heard a “clear logical defense of Christianity”. At least that’s what good ol’ Ray Comfort says. He wants Christians, and atheists, to come to his failing Ark and listen to what he claims to be this unicorn, since, no, there isn’t any such thing as a “clear logical defense of Christianity”. Even Christians can’t convince each other that they have the “right” answer and the “right” Christianity.
Now, this supposedly will be a 5 day conference over Easter weekend “This five-day conference also features a Good Friday service with our President, Emeal (“E.Z.”) Zwayne, and a free Easter sunrise service on Sunday morning, which you can attend even if you can’t make the conference!” and will have the Answers In Genesis people there too. I wonder, can we have a fight between old earth Christians and young earth ones? For this being a “five day conference” you get a total of 14 hours of rehashed stuff, maybe seen Ken Ham for two hours (or pay an extra fee as is likely) and the rest is movies and preaching, or expecting you to get your own food since that’s not covered either.
Now this “priceless” bit of nonsense is: $500 for a family (only families that are approved of AIG, of course, and only one child gets to eat free per adult who buys food at the museum), or $250 for a couple or $199 for a single person. This is of course not including lodging, and gee, you get tickets to see something you’ve probably seen before, the failed Ark. Of course, there is an upcharge for “certain events” not defined. Oh and we mustn’t forget the 20% off of the crap in the souvenir shop.
One of the speakers is Jason Lisle, who actually has a PhD in astrophysics, and not so strangely has not published one paper on how that idiocy happened, but plenty on how the sun actually works. So much for that long promised “evidence” for creation that AIG, and other peddlers of lie claim to have “real soon now”. They also have one other scientist, Georgia Purdom, who sadly has a PhD in molecular genetics, but has chosen to study “She seeks to understand the original, created, “very good” roles of bacteria in the pre-Fall world and genetic mechanisms that have led to their adaptations and pathogenicity in a post-Fall world.” It appears she is studying evolution, but well, don’t all it that, and well, hers has to be by magic. It is no surprise at all that neither publish in peer reviewed journals anymore. They know that their creationist nonsense won’t pass muster, so they hide in creationist magazines.
So, we have Living Waters charging more money for what they’ve said before, and what has failed before. I’d be happy to give an education on creationist claims to any one who wants it entirely for free. For you see, Ray won’t be saying anything new; Ray has published the same stuff for decades, and the last time he wanted to educate atheists, he tried to put a certificate for a Subway sub in his book just to get people to take it, wasn’t allowed and failed miserably (he did give the certificates to the homeless after being shamed into it). They just want your money for their “megaconference”. I have run conferences. If you need more than 15 minutes between topics, then you are just padding things to charge more.
Nothing like TrueChristians(tm) cheating each other.