Communism = Atheism = Relative Morality


CommunistFashions

Above by Michael Ramirez of Investor’s Business Daily, 26 June 2007

CheGuevaraShirtCost

Above by Red Planet Cartoons. The bearded guy so prevalent on shirts is the same one who said“If the nuclear missiles had remained we would have fired them against the heart of the U.S. including New York City. The victory of socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims.”

     liberal_idiot

Above via Moonbattery

How many million? One hundred million. A breakdown here.

If you want some gruesome photographic evidence of the above massacres: Here at Moonbattery

Links regarding Communist-sponsored mass murder: This comment.

The following statements will be offensive to some, and the line of reasoning may be challenged. But I find the logic to be whole.

Communists are de facto atheists. Atheists believe that there is no God – no higher power per se.

If there is no higher power, morals and ethics are determined by man himself. Where there is no God, man makes himself god.

Therefore, morals become relative to the situation. There is no absolute definition of right or wrong – it depends on the viewer, the culture or the majority decision.

The killing of millions therefore cannot be condemned as ‘fundamentally immoral’ if there is no fundamental on which to base a definition of wrong.

If survival of the species is the determinant in a genetic code of morals, then it can be argued that killing 10 million humans is moral if it preserves the life of 100 million humans.

And if there are no longer any morals to offer restraint, then the monster within will be freely unleashed… Like in the case of that most famous of revolutionary poster-boys, Che kill-everyone-out-of-insurgent-hate Guevara.

Similarly, if homosexuality is not considered immoral, there are no moral arguments against bestiality.

If both the human and the animal willingly participate in sex and enjoy it, what protest can be made? That it is unnatural or non-procreative? The same can be also said of homosexuality.

Yet you will be hard pressed to find openly professing supporters of zoophilia, even among PFLAG and other LGBT groups. Is bestiality not yet a socially acceptable lifestyle?

Judging by such standards, I guess certain European nations where animal kinkiness, prostitution, drugs and euthanasia are legal are more advanced civilizations than America.

In conclusion, this is what I am getting at: It is not that atheism is by definition immoral. It is that by definition, atheism cannot have absolute morals, only situation-relative ones.

Right and wrong are no longer set in stone, but always in flux.

See also my post Morality: Of Absolutes and Relatives.


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215 Responses to “Communism = Atheism = Relative Morality”

  1. Brian Westley Says:

    Religion has no absolute morals, either, only humans who claim to speak for god(s). Is polygamy moral or immoral? The answer depends entirely on what god the person asked follows. Since gods never show up to settle such questions, we’re still stuck with humans arguing with other humans. Religious arguments are just invalid arguments from authority, since anyone can say anything about what god(s) want.

  2. Scott Thong Says:

    Granted. But within a particular belief system (at least, for the theistic ones) the set of moral codes and laws is treated as absolute – given by an absolute authority and meant to be absolute and not open for rewriting.

    As to which religion is right about the set of moral laws, that is a question for apologetics. See my myriad posts in the category Apologia tou Kristou for various reasons why I believe Christianity to be uniqeuly true from an objective, factual and historical assessment.

    Particularly relevant on historical reliability:

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2006/08/16/isaiah-in-the-dead-sea-scrolls/

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2006/11/25/was-the-bible-changed-reasons-why-it-could-not-have-been/

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2006/11/24/when-were-the-gospels-written-internal-evidence-from-acts/

    On inexplicable foreshadowing of New Testament themes in the Old Testament:

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/01/26/hidden-revelation-in-the-genealogy-from-adam-to-noah/

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2006/11/10/a-cross-to-the-promised-land/

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2006/12/14/christ-as-god-in-the-old-testament/

  3. Brian Westley Says:

    “But within a particular belief system (at least, for the theistic ones) the set of moral codes and laws is treated as absolute – given by an absolute authority and meant to be absolute and not open for rewriting.”

    Yes, that’s one of the absolute worst things about religious belief systems.

  4. Scott Thong Says:

    Agreed where the the religious texts says things like “Kill all non-believers” or “Sacrifice your newborn babies on the altar of Molech”.

    But how about when it says things like “Love God and humans”, “Value innocent life” and “Give up your life for the sake of others” ?

    At least with such definitive guidelines, we have a solid foundation to stand on when it comes to issues such as eugenics, racial cleansing and abortion (i.e. “Sacrifice your unborn babies on the altar of selfish liberal secular humanism”).

    So the crux of the debate is this: Is it better for us to have absolute guidelines that have been set by an all-knowing, all-wise, immortal, timeless, perfect and infallible God who designed us and our entire universe in the first place?

    Or is it better for us short-lived, arrogant, cliqueish, bigoted, self-centred, small-minded, under-exposed and often moronic humans to decide for ourselves what is best?

    You certainly can’t tell Stalin or Mao that sacrificing your own populace for the greater future is wrong because God says so. Where there is no God, Man is his own god.

    Nor can you convince an aborting mother that it is wrong to let doctors stab her babies’ brain with scissors if she believes that life has a relative value.

    What guidelines do atheists adhere to, if any? Contemporary culture or the majority? I suggest that we do not call for a global vote on what should be considered moral – the billion Chinese swing vote might decide that nonCommunists are expendable for the greater future good of the human species.

    More likely, it is whatever each individual thinks constitutes ‘moral’. I venture that there is little agreement between different atheist/humanist individuals or groups, since there is no overarcing set of beliefs or rules.

    So then… Let’s say I think euthanizing the chronically unemployed, terminally sick, criminals and old people is MORALLY superior to letting them slowly drain away society’s resoruces. Go ahead and tell me why I am MORALLY wrong.

  5. Brian Westley Says:

    Let me ask you – should homosexual acts between consenting adults be illegal?

  6. Scott Thong Says:

    I use the term Christian here, but you may replace it with whichever religion or philosophy of your choice.

    IM own HO, people who do not profess to be Christians should not be bound by the rules, laws and norms of Christianity. Ergo, homosexuality between consenting adults should not be made illegal through the secular laws of the nation.

    They may also have civil unions, but not marriage in a Christian church – marriage being defined as a union ordained and blessed by God and accepted by the Christian community.

    However, point 1: If there exist separate sets of rules and laws for different philosophical beliefs, how do we ensure that the laws are fairly implemented?

    This is a problem in Muslim majority countries where nonMuslims are subject to the secular court, but Muslims are subject to the Sharia court. Thus one argument against the right to renounce religion and become apostate is that a Muslim who commited a Sharia-but-not-secular crime can just renounce Islam and get away free.

    Point 2, the open demonstration and acceptance of homosexuality will have an influence on the rest of the populace. It is undesirable for Christians to have their children surrounded by LGBT friends who will be a big influence on their choices.

    If that does not sound like a valid argument, note that lawsuits are brought against Christians who protelyse where they are unwelcome. If we similarly consider homosexuality a belief/lifestyle, should not protelysing by the LGBT community also be kept out of where it is not welcome?

    Point 3, one which you likely will not consider valid, however I will state it anyhow. In the history of the nation of Israel, the immorality of the people’s behaviour eventually brought ruin to the nation. God gave them repeated warnings, but they kept telling God to stuff it. So God removed His protection from the nation, and bigger empires came and crushed Israel.

    If we apply this notion of righteous/unrighteous living, then even if the Christians stay to themselves doing all their holy stuff, the God-displeasing actions of the rest of the community and nation could still lead to the downfall of everyone.

    (That was one argument on 9-11 you know. When people asked, “How could God let this happen?” the response of some was the immorality of the nation had caused God to remove His protection from it.)

    Therefore, taking all the points together, in the practical reality it is undesirable for Christians to allow unGodly behaviour – such as homosexuality, bestiality, abortion, free sex, etc. – to be legalized.

    To accept such activity would be to encourage it – which is morally irresponsible, would end up influencing the weaker-willed of the believers, and might bring God’s judgement upon everyone ala Sodom and Gomorrah.

    So while from a human viewpoint I do not think homosexual acts between consenting adults should be illegal, from a spiritual and practical viewpoint it cannot be permitted.

  7. Brian Westley Says:

    I see, you’ll just be a reluctant totalitarian and outlaw everything that your religion “cannot permit.”

    I’m glad you have no political power.

  8. Scott Thong Says:

    Well, I believe in true neutrality and objectivity. After all, who’s to say that I am correct in believing Christianity to be right? I could be gravely mistaken.

    Therefore to better ensure fairness, I always put myself in the other party’s shoes.

    How would I feel if the LGBT community were the majority, and implemented laws stating that pure heterosexuality is illgeal – every person must have non-straght sex at least once before gaining citizenship? (Not too far fetched – many countries today de facto disallow Christians or any other non-Communist/Muslims from pactising their beliefs.

    But look at it from this point of view: That Christianity’s claims are right, and persisting in ungodly, immoral behaviour will result in suffering and eternal damnation.

    If that’s the case, would it be morally, ethically, socially and humanly responsible to just let the LGBTs be? Staying inside our churches all cosy and shielded from the outside world?

    In real life, you can be held negligent if you just stood by as a young child drowned, or set itself on fire. It is similarly irresponsible to let the unknowing, unbelieving masses march off to doom… In fact, it’s worse, since eternity and infinity are added into the mix!

    But of course, this assumes that Christianity is correct about all of this. As I said before, that’s a question for apologetics. I’ve previously given links to my posts on several reasons why I believe Christianity to be uniquely correct.

    On a related note… I personally know Pastor Edmund Smith, who was once a truly flamboyant gay. He turned to men for sexual love because he did not receive love from his father.

    But after many deeply disappointing relationships, he found that Jesus and God the Father offered pure, complete, unconditional and unselfish love. The love of a Man, though not sexual.

    Edmund Smith converted to Christianity and renounced his former life of sin, and he found more manly love from fellow believers. It turns out that men can love one another deeply and intimately without any sexual overtones at all! (Similar to how guys can love girls as sisters, though it’s easy to cross the line.)

    Today he is hapily married with one child, and runs a ministry for LGBTs called the True Love Ministry. It doesn’t force people to stop being gay or tell them that their lifestyle is wrong. By loving and caring for them unconditionally, some eventually come to know the source of the love – a God of true love. And this God of true love knows what is best for them – and it is not a homosexual lifestyle.

    You can find Edmund Smith’s blog at the Blogroll on the right side of my main page, or go direct to Real Love Ministry at http://www.r-l-m.com/

  9. Brian Westley Says:

    “Well, I believe in true neutrality and objectivity.”

    Well, no you don’t. You think your theology should be law. And I’m sure if your theology radically changed, you’d insist that everyone obey your new theology.

  10. Scott Thong Says:

    What I meant by that was, I believe that true neutrality and objectivity, based of fact and reason and logic, should be used to determine what philosophy and worldview is correct and true. Once that has been determined, I adhere to it. Every once in a while, I reexamine my stand and requestion my beliefs according to new evidence.

    I can honestly say that if evidence beyond reasonable doubt were produced that showed Christianity is wrong or fake – such as ancient documents from BCE that show the New Testament is a modified rip-off – then I would reconsider and even reject Christianity.

    Can you say the same for your own views, Mr. One Sentence? What are your philosophies anyway? How did you come to adhere to them?

    I dare say that I chose and continue to choose my philosophy more neutrally, objectively, logically and factually than you.

    Refute me. I dare ya.

    PS. No, I do not think that my theology should be law and everyone should adhere to what I think is right. I admit to having a sadistic and vindictive streak – those who reject Christ’s offer of salvation can go ahead and be condemned to an eternity away from the source of all goodness, niceness, love and joy, and I’d say serve ‘em right, thats what they always wanted. (That makes me a rather uncaring, selfish Christian.)

    And all that aside… In the bottom line, God’s word IS law. Sin leads to suffering, death and eternal lostness whether you or PFLAG or whichever politicians disagree about it. Votes and revolutions aren’t gonna change the fact that if you do’t want to play by God’s rules, then God’s isn’t gonna play with you.

  11. Brian Westley Says:

    “What I meant by that was, I believe that true neutrality and objectivity, based of fact and reason and logic, should be used to determine what philosophy and worldview is correct and true. Once that has been determined, I adhere to it.”

    But you go BEYOND that. You require that everyone else obey YOUR opinion of what is true. That’s tyranny.

  12. Scott Thong Says:

    *Sigh* Little boy, please listen closely.

    Nowhere did I state that I intend all people, regardless of personal beliefs, to be forced to obey God’s laws as revealed in the Bible. Show me where I said that.

    What I believe is that if you want to call yourself a Bible-believing, God-loving Christian, then you have to obey God’s laws. No gay ordained ministers. No visits to the prostitutes. No voting for laws that allow abortion and same-sex marriages. (Note that I said VOTING – us Christians do believe in democracy, especially the Baptists who vote on every little church decision.)

    And if you’re not Christian, then you can just go ahead and be intimately penetrated by your same-gender giraffes – just keep that stuff out of our sight and hearing.

    Even God Himself does not force His laws on people. Sure, it breaks His heart to see people willingly fling themselves off the deep edge. But if He wanted perfectly obedient servants, He’d have made robots instead of sin-capable humans.

    Besides, truth is NOT a relative thing! What do mean, my OPINION of what is true? If it is true that gravity makes objects fall to the ground, disbelieving it does NOT allow us to fly! If it is NOT true that a Thai transvestite is a woman, then by golly he has a Y chromosome even if he looks like a total babe!

    So is it tyranny to be subject to reality?

    Similarly, if God’s existence and His laws as stated in the Bible are true, there is no escaping form that fact in the end. What you or I opine about it does nothing to change the fact. When we are all dead, we will see if my assumption is correct, no?

    Heck, EVERY SYSTEM OF LAW forces itself on some people. No law is fully accepted and agreed upon by every single citizen. I for one think many of the traffic rules are pooh. But I still have to follow them regardless or face a fine. By your definition, does that make the city council tyrannical?

    And I shall turn your argument back onto atheism – Would it be tyrannical to force all school students, regardless of belief, to study the Bible? And force them to take exams on Applied Christianity that determine their graduating grades?

    I’m sure you’ll think that’s EXTREMELY tyrannical.

    But that is EXACTLY what is happening in schools today… Only the belief being forced upon everyone is Darwinistic evolution. What does evolution teach? That all life was formed and evolved without the influence of any outside factors. It was all accomplished through random chance.

    No outside influence. In other words, NO GOD. That’s atheistic teaching right there. No other purported scientific theory requires atheistic assumptions.

    Students can’t even raise the idea of there being an influencing, guiding force directing evolution. The understanding, fair-minded, totally non-tyrannical atheists do not even allow Intelligent Design to be taught alongside as an alternative.

    And don’t get me started on the LACK of hard evidence for macro-evolution, something that other theories such as General Relativity and quantum physics and spherical Earth possess in abundance. Science nothing, evolution is an athiest philosophy with less observable proof than the Bible’s accounts of historical events.

    Then again, the proofless blind faith of evolution fits in PERFECTLY with other utterly proofless ’scientific’ ideas as spontaneous generation and the steady-state universe. Which have been decisively disproven by Pasteur and the Big Bang expanding universe, by the way.

    So how come evolutionists still cling to the spontaneous generation idea that produced the first DNA molecules from nonliving chemicals? They say that single-celled bacteria were the first life forms on Earth.

    But do you know how crazily complex even a single cell is? With all the nucleus, flagella, cell membrane, vacuole? I’m a Biology grad, I know! For a non-layman to imagine a whole bacterial cell forming from random chemicals, well, that’s mythology right there!

    Such theories as the above were/are firmly embraced by atheists, because they offer an escape to a reality that doesn’t need a God. If the universe simply always existed, they wouldn’t need God to have started it. If life could spontaneously arise from nonlife, well, no need for God to create it then!

    It strikes me, sir, that atheists are the ones who are truly blind-faithed, proud, illogical and – yes – TYRANNICAL.

    Or do you forget Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Phnom Penh, Castro, Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il? One of their favourite pastimes was killing religious believers and destroying churches.

    And so-called democratic, tolerant atheists in the West ban prayer from schools, carrying Bibles, wearing crosses and even nclduing Christ in Christmas. Atheists hijacking and subjugating the personal activities of Christians and a Christian religious celebration. There’s your TYRANNY right there.

    You know, little boy, I do believe you have no greater agenda than to heckle me and look for a fight. You probably don’t even read my entire comment essays, just scan through wihtout contemplating, and then repeat your same tired point AGAIN.

    It is also very convenient that you do not state your own views for comparison. What laws do YOU think we should follow? Are they just as ‘tyrannical’ as mine?

    Or perhaps you feel that not having any laws is best. Everyone should follow their own rules and definition of what is right and wrong.

    If that were implemented, watch and see and your neighbours ransack your house in the name of ’sharing’, rapists terrorize the streets in the name of ‘free love’, and the police ignore you and go bowling as suits their mood.

    That, good sir, is one theology of what hell is like – a place where everyone is free to do their own thing, their own way. No God’s laws or rules. Unfortunately, everyone else is also trying to their own thing to, at the expense of others. And so chaos and disorder reign.

    Ah, I tire of this. Go and bring someone who is well educated, deeply read and experienced in sensible debating. A least he will stimulate my mind with new ideas and thoughtful arguments. Who knows, he might even convince me on some of the positive points of his philosophy.

    Whereas you, little boy, fit a message board better with your non sequiturs and – quite frankly – uninformative comments. Prove me wrong and try harder with your next one.

  13. Scott Thong Says:

    However, I do want to thank you… Your prodding gave me the necessary motivation to flesh out and put into words my polemic against atheism, that until now has been gestating in my mind.

    As iron sharpens iron, sometimes jelly can inexplicably mould steel…

  14. Pallawish Says:

    Sure, Atheism is relative morality, but if you believe in objective morality from some place such as the bible.. well then why don’t christians obey the laws on mildew in the old testment, or laws of unclean bodily discharge? God wanted it to be obeyed, who are you to say that it doesn’t matter?

  15. Scott Thong Says:

    Simple, because we are not Jews. I happen to be a Chinaman. Oh, velly nice-o meeta you!

    “And when a stranger shall sojourn with thee, and will keep the passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as one that is born in the land: for no uncircumcised person shall eat thereof. One law shall be to him that is homeborn, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among you.” – Exodus 12:48-49

    So unless an individual is Jewish, he/she should not partake in the Passover. Some claim that Gentiles are “spiritual” Jews, but in the flesh and blood they are not. The Jews are special people in God’s eyes; this is irrefutable. Again, Gentiles are not Jews; therefore they are not bound to keep all tenets of the Law of Moses. When Jesus partook in Passover, He always did it with His fellow Jews; no Gentile ever participated.

    The above two paragraphs were taken from Point 7 of http://ahnsahnghong.tripod.com/id21.html which I had just happened to be reading. (Coincidence or God-incidence!) It’s about the Passover, but basically explains the gist of why Christians do not follow Mosaic laws.

    Or take these verses from Jeremiah 31:31-34…

    31 “The time is coming,” declares the LORD,
    “when I will make a new covenant
    with the house of Israel
    and with the house of Judah.

    32 It will not be like the covenant
    I made with their forefathers
    when I took them by the hand
    to lead them out of Egypt,
    because they broke my covenant,
    though I was a husband to them,”
    declares the LORD.

    33 “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel
    after that time,” declares the LORD.
    “I will put my law in their minds
    and write it on their hearts.
    I will be their God,
    and they will be my people.

    34 No longer will a man teach his neighbor,
    or a man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’
    because they will all know me,
    from the least of them to the greatest,”
    declares the LORD.
    “For I will forgive their wickedness
    and will remember their sins no more.”

    That’s what the New Testament of Christianity is… A new covenant, a new promise, a new set of rules to live by.

    Other people have asked and answered your question before. The first three Google hits net me these links:

    http://everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=1173957

    http://www.lavistachurchofchrist.org/LVarticles/WhyWeDontFollowtheOldTestament.htm

    http://www.decapolis.com/faith_/pages/DoWeFollowOldTestamentLaws.shtml

    And this amusing article explains why even modern JEWS, even the Ultra-Orthodox branch, seldom follow the OT laws for Jews!

    http://www.win.net/ratsnest/archive-articles-4/fog0000000021.html

    Most Christians are un-circumsized Gentiles. But we obey the ultimate law that Jesus gave us: To Love God and love man. See http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/03/29/response-to-the-letter-to-dr-laura-on-homosexuality/ and http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2006/09/27/two-loves-in-balance/ for some exegesis.

  16. Liam Says:

    Yes, thank you for the comment about a new covenant. Ask a Christian about Christianity, and you’ll get a straight answer. Some of those rules in the OT dealt with issues relevant only at the time and place where they were given.
    In my view, the issue is entirely laid to rest for those who believe in modern revelation. If one believes that God once spoke to Hebrews and gave them a law suited to their time, what stops Him from revealing things to us suited to our time? Here there is controversy among Christian sects, but I think we can all at least agree that no good father stops speaking to his children, and we hold God (according to scripture) to be the Father of mankind. This is the point of many present-day believers: “That God speaketh, not [merely] spake…”
    So who are we to say that an old rule doesn’t matter? Pallawish’s point is valid, but he ignores another critical and related question: who are we to retain rules that God has revoked?

  17. Scott Thong Says:

    Good point to bring up, Liam.

    The difficulty and controversy surrounding the idea of modern revelation is this: Who is the source of authority to whom God has genuinely revealed His word?

    The Roman Catholic Church (RCC) would say that the Popes, as God’s representative on Earth, is the authoritaty on new doctrines. In deciding about a new revelation, he is considered infallible – incapable of making a mistake.

    After all, the line of Popes is considered to go back all the way to Peter, assumed to be the leader of the Apostles and thus the early church.

    Various cults would say that their founder is/was the source of new revelation, and cannot be challenged.

    The mainstream Protestant belief is that no mere man is infallible – to be so would be mean he is without the corrupting taint of sin. And while all who put their faith in Christ are cleansed of their sins, that does not make us perfect. To wit, since there are no perfect people around, there is no perfect (and binding) new revelation.

    This is one of the bigegst contentions between the RCC and non-RC churches – whether the Pope is a doctrinally infallible, or even the rightful head of all believers.

    After all, where does it say that Peter was the official leader of the church? Or that Jesus meant there to be a string of successive leaders who hold full power and authority? Aren’t we supposed to have God as our direct authority, and hence, obey the word of God in form of the Bible?

    That’s the mainstream Protestant belief – the Bible, and only the Bible, is the source of autoritative revelation. One line of reasoning against modern revelation laying down new, binding laws are the third and fourth last verses of the Bible:

    “I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book. And if anyone takes words away from this book of prophecy, God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.” Revelation 22:18-19

    Thus if one is of the conviction that only the Bible should be the basis of Christian conduct, then no new laws after the last verse of Revelation should be accepted.

    This is one argument against the aforementioned infallibility of new doctrine as revealed by Popes. Another of the biggest disagreements between Roman Catholics and Protestants is the addition of new rules and doctrines not present in the Bible (such as the Sacramaents which the RCC claims are necessary for salvation).

    This of course does not apply to (extra)ordinary everyday revelation… God speaking to us and the Holy Spirit guiding us. God’s personal will for each of us is more like the case of Jonah, IMO.

    My own experience is that it is immeasureably comforting and assuring knowing that God has made clear His will for me. My current job and my upcoming marriage are based firmly on specific signs from God (skills and love aside). Thus I worry not at all about whether I will have provision, or whether I’m marrying the right person, or it will all last.

  18. Jamie Says:

    Whatever new revelation from above, it must be 100% based on a principle given in the Bible. From the first ever revelation after the NT was given even to today’s theology of the Cultural Mandate, every single true revelation was drawn from a principle spoken in the bible.

    A revelation is never private: It is always open to scrutiny and to discussion and prayer among different groups of elders/leaders.

    In my view, while things like the Sacraments are not necessary for salvation, they should be observed out of respect for God’s command to do it in remembrance of Him. Furthermore, there is a supernatural power in the breaking of the bread and in the wine which many Protestant churches seem to have lost hold of. In a nutshell, things like speaking in tongues, the Sacraments and water baptism are necessary although they don’t save you. They allow you to fulfill either 1) keeping God’s commandments or 2) fulfilling all of God’s plans for you.

  19. NAND Gate Fetishist Says:

    “And all that aside… In the bottom line, God’s word IS law. Sin leads to suffering, death and eternal lostness whether you or PFLAG or whichever politicians disagree about it”

    YEAH! GOD’S LAW! Eternal Hellfire for all who wear cotton/polyester blends! Rayon and spandex?! Don’t come near my children you heathen! Crop Rotation is evil and should be punished by a lake of fire!

  20. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Actually communist regimes had absolute morality. They were not relativists in any sense of the word. A good person was one who obeyed the authorities, was an informer and stood ready to oppose enemies of the revolution. Interestingly communist morality was similar to christian morality (homosexuality is illegal in Cuba). So saying atheism and communism and relative morality are the same isn’t true. Plus you have communists that weren’t atheists so that is another stake in your arguement.

    So you’re saying there is no reason to condemn bestality, but your condeming it? Isn’t that like saying you have no reason to hate black people, but you hate them anyway?

    Europe is more socially advanced in some ways- the US doesn’t have a monopoly on all that is good in the human race.

    The only thing in your whole tirade that is true is that it is hypocritical for people to wear procommunist clothing in the US.

  21. Samuel Skinner Says:

    I like that “God’s word is law” by the way. Well, so is the Furher’s. I also don’t get what you mean by absolute morality. You seem to believe moralities goal is to obey God. Since he doesn’t exist that would be hard. I think it means to fullfill your duties and obligations to the rest of the human race in order to achieve the best results possible. Probably should look at a dictionary first though…

  22. Scott Thong Says:

    Seeing that as I also am uncircumcized, do not sacrifice young male goats for my sins and regularly eat pork, I just might be joining you down there Fetish mate…

    Oops, I forgot, I’M NOT JEWISH lol!

  23. Scott Thong Says:

    So you’re saying there is no reason to condemn bestality, but your condeming it? Isn’t that like saying you have no reason to hate black people, but you hate them anyway?

    Actually, what I’m saying that if humans can define what is moral or ethical based on the situation, then anything is permissible if enough people agree to it. But that’s not what I subscribe to.

    Intellectually, I am supportive of civil rights for homosexuals… But religiously, I do not believe that Christianity supports homosexuality. Glad I’m not the President with a bill in front of me…

  24. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Your not a moral person if the only reason you aren’t commiting immoral acts is because you lack the power. In fact you seem to have no idea what morality is- I’ll give you a hint- it isn’t mindless dogmatism. Then you’re a utopian commie… or a facist… or a fundie. You can say their is an absolute morality, but unless you can defend it you’re just blowing steam.

  25. Scott Thong Says:

    Your not a moral person if the only reason you aren’t commiting immoral acts is because you lack the power.

    I have to agree with you here. Most conservatives support strict laws banning things like homosexual marriage, or even homosexuality itself, because it is immoral.

    Yet if people were not even allowed to choose between accepting or rejecting something immoral, then they are not acting morally – they are simply being forced to obey the law!

    This is the same argument for why YHWH did something so ‘provocative’ as place the forbidden tree in the Garden of Eden. Didn’t He know that its presence would tempt Adam and Eve?

    But if YHWH had not allowed for SOME way for Adam and Eve to CHOOSE to rebel… How would they rebel, practically? “You can sin if you want to… But I didn’t give you the ability to!” They might as well be robots.

    But on the other hand, if immoral behaviour is openly permitted or even encouraged, then the reality is that it will influence people to behave in that same way. Put a porn shop in a school, and tell me that it doesn’t unnecessarily provoke the schoolboys.

    Or for an apt illustration or temptation/provocation, see the classic Ren & Stimpy sequence, The History Eraser Button: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=History+Eraser+Button

    So it’s one thing to ban all possibilities of immorality, but it’s another thing to drown people in sources of temptation.

    My philosophy is that things aren’t pure black or pure white, but red – just as blood is not made of pure salt or pure water, but requires a specific combination of both (and more), every problem has a solution with a precise measure.

    On absolute morality, this particular Christian’s logicking is: If the Bible is proven accurate and true on things that can be proven (e.g. historical events), then what it says about things that can’t be proven (e.g. existence of God, God’s law is the best way) can be inferred to be true as well.

    Hence, if God and His laws are true, then the morality He instituted is absolute – they do not change by democratic vote.

  26. Samuel Skinner Says:

    If Marx’s guide to the revolution is accurate than his depiction of morality is accurate and you can achieve an absolute communist morality throught the correct interpretation.
    Why would you put people into a situation where they can rebel without telling them the consequences? We would do it to test someone so that we could know later on if they are trust worthy- God doesn’t have that problem. He can read minds, remember? The bible hasn’t been proven accurate- well, any more accurate than the Illiad and the Odessy. Or the Vedas or the Koran… Morality doesn’t get instituted by democratic vote- it isn’t moral because it is written down either. Do you think gravity works because we agreed to obey gravity or because people wrote down “Fg= m1+m2 times G over r2? No it exists as part of our universe! You can find out morality- it is the best actions, the right things to do to ensure happiness.

  27. Scott Thong Says:

    Why would you put people into a situation where they can rebel without telling them the consequences? We would do it to test someone so that we could know later on if they are trust worthy- God doesn’t have that problem. He can read minds, remember?

    Well, firstly God did tell Adam and Eve that “you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”

    The apparent paradox of God’s omniscience VS man’s free will is an age old and much debated topic. I can’t do justice to it in a short comment, but here’s one of my own original explanations:

    The future exists as an infinite number of potential outcomes. Each different action now results in another set of infinite outcomes, whose actions leads to more sets of infinite outcomes, etc. Your basic quantum multiple universes theory that superhero comics are so fond of using.

    With infinite-times-infinite-to-the-power-of-infinite outcomes, it is impossible for us to comprehend even one possible future for our existence. We can’t even finish reading one book, let alone the library.

    But God, being infinitely all-knowing, knows the entire storyline of EVERY POSSIBLE outcome. He knows the plots and endings of EVERY book in the entire library. That is how He is omniscient.

    But the outcome has not been decided yet – humans, with their God-give free will, are still choosing the words and pages that go into the book that will actually reach the public distribution stage. Thus the future doesn’t exist yet, as it is still being determined by our choices.

    So the future is not chosen yet, but every possible combination for every possible future is known to God. That is how God’s sovereignty and human free will can coexist, in one way of describing it.

    ———————–

    Do you think gravity works because we agreed to obey gravity or because people wrote down “Fg= m1+m2 times G over r2? No it exists as part of our universe! You can find out morality- it is the best actions, the right things to do to ensure happiness.

    The main difference I see between physical laws and moral laws is that the former can be objectively determined and proven. Fire is hot and will burn us no matter what our opinion or vote may be.

    However the latter is often considered subjective (i.e. relative).

    A simple and divisive example: Abortion.

    Is it less morally correct to end the life of an unborn child? Or is it less morally correct to force a woman to carry and bear a child she does not want? Liberals favour the woman’s freedom of choice, conservatives favour the unborn child’s right to life.

    So even for just one example, we find no consensus on what is ‘The Universal and Objective Law of Abortion Rights’ that is already determined no matter what we feel.

    If Joanne says that it is ‘clearly wrong’ to force women to support a parasite for 9 months, then a lifetime after that as a dependent, I can retort that it is ‘clearly wrong’ to murder a baby without giving him any say in the matter.

    And that is what I mean by relative morality – nobody can say that he is definitely right or wrong if there is no standard manual, no Universal Constitution to refer to.

    For Bible-believing fundamentalists, the answer should be clear: Life and soul begin in the womb according to several verses of scripture.

    The Bible says fetuses and even embryos are human life, and the Bible is the word of the Creator of the universe and all life. Therefore babies must be preserved – Roe vs Wade, public opinion and pro-choice protest marches are irrelevant.

    That’s what I mean by absolute morality – there is a standard manual and Universal Constitution we can all refer to. The only matter is WHAT is the Universal Constitution, but that’s another debate.

    ——————————

    The bible hasn’t been proven accurate- well, any more accurate than the Illiad and the Odessy.

    IMHO, the Bible is more historically and textually verified than other ancient manuscripts. I admit, it’s a work in progress, but evolution was accepted long before the necessary evidence was found.

    Here’s a starter:

    The Cyrus Cylinder – Not Isolated and Not Vague Verification of the Bible’s Historical Account

    Which has links to more.

  28. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Funny, I seem to remember Adam and Eve not dying. I guess God lied.

    Free will and omniscience is a paradox the same way Star Trek has many paradox’s (telepathy, transporter, Federation, empires, replicator, etc…)- it can’t be resolved. If god is all knowing he will know the path we take. If he doesn’t he isn’t all knowing. It is that simple.

    Morality is determined by the fact we are human. The Bible is not the word of the creator. even you a Christian should know that. The bible is what the Jews recorded and what the apostles said. The bible never discusses abortion. I know this because there are pro choice Christians- for a work of absolute morality it sure defends on subjective interpretation.
    There is another problem, the fate of all command morality- would you kill children if the bible commanded it? If yes you are immoral, if no then there is another source of morality. We don’t need holy books- we can examine this other source and find a universal standard.

    Of course fetuses are human life! All living things that have our geonome are human life. It is a question of scientience- we feel no guilt when we scratch ourselves, even though it causes the deaths of thousands of cells.

    Sorry to disappoint you, but the Bible is multiple books. And here is where it gets tricky- which books to include? The bible is not more historically verified. My evidence is modernism; a Catholic attempt to show faith can be reconcilled with reason. It was declared heretical when they relized how many errors the bible has. The bible has multiple instances of blatent contradictions- for example has two entirely different sets of listed ancestors, the prophecy doesn’t refer to a virgin (its a mistranslation), Judas dies by two different methods, etc. There are sites entirely devoted to places where the bible completely and flatly contradicts itself.

  29. hutchrun Says:

    Talking of Adam and Eve, this was a most interesting perspective (it`s in a few installments – scroll down):

    Serpents of desire: Good and evil in the Garden of Eden — Beauty and the Beast

    http://www.jewishworldreview.com/1104/fohrman7.php3

    Got me thinking on this too:
    “Bernadette claimed that “monsters would be spawned” and this would be the catalyst that would make humankind rise up against such science and those practicing it.”

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1307508/posts

  30. Scott Thong Says:

    Funny, I seem to remember Adam and Eve not dying. I guess God lied.

    Uh, then how come they aren’t still around and telling us stories about washing machines made out of boulders on Martha Stewart today?

    They died a spiritual, relational and emotional death immediately. And as sin took its mutative toll on their physical bodies, eventually:

    And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died. – Genesis 5:5

    Quite hard to misinterpret that, if you ever bothered to read through the literatire you are so avidly attacking.

    Satan was the one who lied when he told Eve, “You will not surely die.”

    —————–

    Free will and omniscience is a paradox the same way Star Trek has many paradox’s (telepathy, transporter, Federation, empires, replicator, etc…)- it can’t be resolved

    I think you are confusing paradox (two things which cannot exist simultaneously, yet appearing at the same time) with improbable/impossible fiction.

    For example, the Star Trek replicator is possible in theory – simple combine molecules of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen into a carbohydrate and eat it.

    Whereas “That is a pure gold bar made out of pure mercury” is a paradox, it’s nonsensical – either it’s pure gold or it’s pure mercury or it’s neither, but not both.

    —————–

    The Bible is not the word of the creator. even you a Christian should know that. The bible is what the Jews recorded and what the apostles said.

    Sorry to disappoint you, but the Bible is multiple books. And here is where it gets tricky- which books to include?

    Fortunately, I know MORE than that. The Bible is what Jewish and non-Jewish writers recorded, yes, but they were led by the spirit of God. It does in fact contain a record of things that God (and Jesus) said directly to His people.

    It may seem like many books, and it was written by many people. But these dozens of writers in three languages and from vastly separated places and times managed to – coincidentally? – write towards one goal, that is God’s plan for mankind.

    “You have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. – 2nd Timothy 3:15-17

    It’s not so much God the CEO saying: “Hey secretary Moses! Write down: Appointment at 8 pm!”

    It was more of God prompting Moses to feel: “Hey, maybe it’d be good to write down what we were doing in the Sinai desert all these years. And I’ll go ask God what the beginning of the world was like too.”

    ———————-

    The bible never discusses abortion. I know this because there are pro choice Christians- for a work of absolute morality it sure defends on subjective interpretation.

    There are also those who claim to be Christians who are pro-homosexuality, members of the KKK, the latest prophet of God, Jesus reincarnated, in communication with alien overlords from outer space…

    So you’re right on the subjective interpretation. But that’s our own shortcoming, not proof that an objective morality does not exist.

    And as for the non-discussion of abortion, the Bible infers it very strongly:

    “You shall not murder.” – Exodus 20:13

    For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. – Psalm 139:13

    This is what the LORD says— he who made you, who formed you in the womb, and who will help you. – Isaiah 44:2

    “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.” – Jeremiah 1:5

    —————————-

    There is another problem, the fate of all command morality- would you kill children if the bible commanded it? If yes you are immoral, if no then there is another source of morality.

    If God (not the Bible) commanded that children be slaughtered (and He has before, such as the killing of all Amalekites during the taking of the Promised Land), then I could not argue – because God is the creator and owner of life.

    Why is it wrong for me to kill another person? Because I do not own or have any right to his life.

    So why was it okay for God to kill everyone in Sodom and Gomorrah or command the Israelites to kill all the pagans? Because He created that life in the first place.

    The ‘victims’ started with nothing, paid God nothing when He gave them 60 years of life – do they have a right to complain when God reclaims his property?

    “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” – Job 1:21

    Of course, this does not give ANYONE license to commit murder in the name of God. After all, how can they prove in a human court of law that God REALLY spoke to them? There are no independent witnesses.

    See this sarcastic response for clarifications of Talmudic law.

    ——————-

    Of course fetuses are human life! All living things that have our geonome are human life. It is a question of scientience- we feel no guilt when we scratch ourselves, even though it causes the deaths of thousands of cells.

    An apt comparison… Until you realize that even by the first Trimester, when most people can even know they are pregnant and abortion is completely legal, the baby has a skull, ribs, face…

    11 weeks fetus with arms, legs and ribcage

    I challenge you to view even the first two pictures through that link, and tell me again how fetuses are equivalent to skin cells.

    By your definition, I wouldn’t mind having my skull hacked open with scissors and my bran vacuumed out either – I’m just an extra-large collection of cells.

    I’m also quite sure the baby wouldn’t mind losing a few skin cells. Just as long as he or she doesn’t lose his or her LIFE, he or she can grow new ones.

    ————–

    The bible has multiple instances of blatent contradictions- for example has two entirely different sets of listed ancestors, the prophecy doesn’t refer to a virgin (its a mistranslation), Judas dies by two different methods, etc. There are sites entirely devoted to places where the bible completely and flatly contradicts itself.

    There are also sites devoted to refuting those claimed contradictions, which I have covered before.

    101 cleared-up contradictions in the Bible

    The three alleged contradictions you cited I can even debunk offhand.

    1) I assume you are referring to the ancestors of Jesus as listed by Matthew and Luke. It’s quite simple to explain if you bothered to spend any time looking at it instead of recycling other people’s remarks: One lists the lineage of Mary, mother of Jesus. The other lists the lineage of Joseph, legal human father of Jesus.

    2) The Hebrew word ‘ammah’ can mean either ‘young woman’ or ‘virgin’ (I’m sure you can see the similarities in meaning there). But why would ANYONE feel that a ‘young woman’ getting pregnant be at all miraculous, let alone a miraculous fulfillment of prophecy by the Messiah? Even the Jews of Jesus’ time understood the prophecy to mean ‘virgin’.

    3) In Matthew, it says Judas hanged himself after throwing the silver pieces he got for his services at the Pharisees. In Acts, it says he used the silver to buy a field, fell headlong in it and his guts burst open.

    But you just have to watch the Passion of the Christ to see how simple it is to find an reconciliation between the two accounts: Judas hangs himself from a tree over a cliff edge. Much later, the rope snaps or is cut, and he falls hundreds of feet down and his rotten guts splatter out.

    The Pharisees got the silver, but didn’t want the blood money in their coffers, so they used the money to buy the field where Judas’ body fell into as his burial ground.

    See? Just a little thinking, and it is sorted out almost immediately.

    You may think that Christian fundamentalists are religious bimbos, but we have to deal with criticism, skepticism and mockery every day. That certainly helps to sharpen our minds, our doctrine and our beliefs by kicking out the lint from our ears.

  31. Jamie Says:

    “You can find out morality- it is the best actions, the right things to do to ensure happiness.”

    Whose happiness are you talking about? What if my happiness involves taking away all your happiness and vice versa? How indeed is one supposed to judge whose right to happiness is greater and thus more moral?

    You can talk all you like about doing the “best” actions, but my “best” is quite likely to be different from your “best”. So whose best do we use?

  32. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Well my mind may not be perfect, but I am a better person that you. Why? Ever heard of the Nuenberg defense? I was only following orders from God…

    Seriously you can point out problems with discovering morality, but the basic truth is command morality is immoral.

    To Jamie- depends on the circumstance- if the cost of you not getting what you want is significantly higher for you than me, then you get it (or vice versa) if the cost is equal than we bargian or get some method to come to an agreement. If it is life one death other, then coin toss or most probable survivor.

    As for the prophecy there is a problem with that: it is refering to a different child and it’s by a false prophet. So it doesn’t refer to a virgin birth.

    Yep criticsm does help sharpen doctrine. The problem with saying lineage is one parent and tone is the other is three fold. First Jesus isn’t born of Joseph so you can’t count him, second the number of relatives are off by about twenty (one list is shorter than the other) and finally Jews trace ancesty down the mother line, no the father’s. You can rationalize what you want to, but then it makes less and less sense (hint- you can only die once).

  33. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Well there is a problem with “the bible is a moral standard”. Either you accept the old testament (proable), which is evil, you use the new covenant arguement, which implies gods rules aren’t constant, or you claim you have to interpret correctly, which implies it isn’t absolute.

    I was thinking and I realized something deeply disturbing. Your criticism of the deaths in communist states isn’t because they killed people, because you yourself stated if god asked you to kill, you would. No, your object is that they did it without permission from god. In short things aren’t immoral if they kill, harm, maim, kill, or by their consequence or even their intention. They are only wrong if god says so.

    Where I come from we have a word for people like you- Evil.

    Is there anything I’m missing or is this the perfect example of Harris’s statement “there are some beliefs so dangerous it would be ethical to kill people for holding them”?

  34. Scott Thong Says:

    heard of the Nuenberg defense? I was only following orders from God…

    Which I already described as being inapplicable in a court of law, even if all the judges and jury were fundamentalist Christians.

    How can I prove that God spoke to me? What witnesses were there? Moses had hundreds of thousands of witnesses – how do I prove that I didn’t make up a lie about hearing God to get myself out of trouble?

    ——————

    As for the prophecy there is a problem with that: it is refering to a different child and it’s by a false prophet. So it doesn’t refer to a virgin birth.

    You’ll have to clarify that one for me, because I’ve never heard that accusation before. Doesn’t refer to virgin birth I’ve already addressed, but false prophet? Since when has Isaiah ever been accused of that?

    More info or link?

    ——————

    First Jesus isn’t born of Joseph so you can’t count him, second the number of relatives are off by about twenty (one list is shorter than the other) and finally Jews trace ancesty down the mother line, no the father’s.

    Jesus is not born of Joseph, true. But Joseph is his legal parent.

    Notice how Luke 3 carefully words it – ‘He was the son, so it was thought, of Joseph’.

    And see how Matthew 1 words it – …and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

    You can see how they take pains to acknowledge and even make clear that Joseph is only LEGALLY the father of Jesus, not biologically, as Joseph married the human mother of Jesus.

    The geneaology list does not mention every single member in the line, simple as that. But even if it DID, who’s to say one line didn’t have children at a younger age than the other? Even in modern times, a nephew can be older than his blood uncle!

    And where did you get the tracing down the mother line thing? In the Bible, all geneaologies mention the fathers and sons – there are very few women even mentioned by name!

    In any case, Luke listed both the mother’s and father’s geneaologies to show that Jesus was descended from King David, both genetically (Mary) and legally (Joseph).

    ——————-

    Well there is a problem with “the bible is a moral standard”. Either you accept the old testament (proable), which is evil, you use the new covenant arguement, which implies gods rules aren’t constant, or you claim you have to interpret correctly, which implies it isn’t absolute.

    This alleged problem is cleared up even by the apostle Paul way back in the 1st-Century. Basically, the Old Testament laws and rituals were all incomplete previews of the perfect plan – Jesus.

    For example, in OT law, any sin must be atoned for with the blood of a sacrificial animal. Because it’s just a mortal animal, the next time a Jew sins, he must sacrifice again.

    But Jesus died on the cross willingly, giving His own blood as a sacrifice for all our sins. As a sinless person, His sacrifice was perfect – no repeats necessary. As God in the flesh, His sacrifice was infinite – every person can be cleansed by it.

    So when Jesus came and died for us, we entered into a new covenant, a new agreement, a new set of laws. Testament means the same as covenant, didn’t you know? So Old Covenant, New Covenant.

    More in-depth explanation of foreshadowing at Response to the Letter to Dr. Laura on Homosexuality, which explains why Christians don’t stone people to death anymore.

    Meanwhile, this link briefly explains the history of why Judaism doesn’t stone people to death in modern times.

    So in conclusion, I do not follow the Mosaic laws of the Old Testament that were meant for Jews. We are actually forbidden from following those laws unless we get circumcized and join the Israelite community, did you know?

    Example: The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “These are the regulations for the Passover: “No foreigner is to eat of it. Any slave you have bought may eat of it after you have circumcised him, but a temporary resident and a hired worker may not eat of it. – Exodus 12:43-45

    (I expect you to come in whining about slavery beign sanctioned by God, but trust me – I am well prepared.)

    Nor is God fickle and changing – He already had everything planned out, but revealed Part 1 to Moses and Part 2 through Jesus.

    And I believe that my interpretation is correct.

    ———————–

    I was thinking and I realized something deeply disturbing. Your criticism of the deaths in communist states isn’t because they killed people, because you yourself stated if god asked you to kill, you would. No, your object is that they did it without permission from god. In short things aren’t immoral if they kill, harm, maim, kill, or by their consequence or even their intention. They are only wrong if god says so.

    Where I come from we have a word for people like you- Evil.

    Now you finally reveal your true form – a plain old mud-slinging troll. I was suspecting as much as your arguments – well thought out and coherent at the start – began to unravel into shallow, easily-countered attacks on the Bible.

    Firstly, I condemn the Communists for being wanton murderers – and then JUSTIFYING that murder as “For the greater good, btw, religion sucks.”

    My defense that morality is defined by God is simple – My God is holy, pure, perfect, just, merciful, kind, wise, all-knowing, and loving. He is GOOD in the most perfect understanding of the word. Whatever He commands MUST BE GOOD by definition.

    So would He ever command me to kill a person who has different religion or political beliefs? No. That’s the Communists – who are overwhelmingly atheist and disdain all forms of theistic religion.

    Would He ever command me to kill a baby in the womb by stabbing its head open with scissors? No. That’s the liberals – who are overwhelmingly unserious about religion and mostly agnostic.

    (Or did you REFUSE to look at the abortion links I gave? Here they are again: http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=51268511&blogID=322352919

    Tell me that those are not babies, but merely lumps of cells.)

    You can call me evil in THEORY, but liberal atheists are the actual ones who are evil in PRACTICE.

    Which counts for more? In secular law, intent to kill is a far lesser crime than actually carrying out murder.

    And for the record, I never stated it so bluntly that ‘If God asked me to kill, I would’.

    First I would use my God-given mind to ponder over whether God really spoke to me. I would also check it out with others, because as I have said many times, it takes independent witnesses to confirm that I am not being schizophrenic.

    Then I would use my God-given heart to ponder over whether the loving and just God I worship would ever command a despicable act. Does it contradict His words in the Bible, such as ‘Love all man as yourself’, ‘Thou shall not commit murder’, and ‘Love your enemy’?

    And I would also remember that God commanded through Paul to be obedient to the rulers of humans, including their laws. Which forbid me from killing anothr human, even if God’s law didn’t forbid me already.

    So you can see how your accusation is shallow and childish. It doesn’t take into account the full knowledge of the Bible that mature Christians have.

    Not everyone just skims through holy books and religion, just looking for flaws, like you do. Some people actually understand what they’re reading.

    God is not an imperfect, selfish, pompous mortal like Stalin and Mao, or Guevara (whom I suspect you admire, as most Lefties do). That is why I say that whatever God commands is perfect and cannot possibly be wrong.

    ——————

    Is there anything I’m missing or is this the perfect example of Harris’s statement “there are some beliefs so dangerous it would be ethical to kill people for holding them”?

    There are better examples… People who would ACTUALLY KILL YOU because you don’t follow their religion or laws. And Christians in the modern age, no matter what you want to believe, seldom do that anymore.

    But you liberals seem so gung-ho about bashing Christians while supporting the ones who actually murder non-believers! How insane and denial-of-reality is that??!!

    ———————–

    In conclusion, I must say that your criticisms of the Bible are quite… Well, noob. No offense. But the slightest browsing would have turned up both the answers to your allegations, and more valid and difficult ‘problems’ with the Bible.

    And by resorting to smear attacks, well, the religion of Humanistic Liberalism does not forbid that in its holy book of Darwinistic Evolution.

  35. Brian Westley Says:

    My defense that morality is defined by God is simple – My God is holy, pure, perfect, just, merciful, kind, wise, all-knowing, and loving. He is GOOD in the most perfect understanding of the word. Whatever He commands MUST BE GOOD by definition.

    So tell me little boy, killing all the inhabitants of Jericho (including children) was good? If you were a soldier serving under Joshua, you would have cheerfully beheaded eight-year-olds?

  36. Jamie Says:

    “To Jamie- depends on the circumstance- if the cost of you not getting what you want is significantly higher for you than me, then you get it (or vice versa) if the cost is equal than we bargian or get some method to come to an agreement. If it is life one death other, then coin toss or most probable survivor.”

    You are espousing moral relativism again. That is an incoherent position, as are all relativistic positions.

    Honestly, can’t you see that your recommendations simply cannot work? There is no way for you to understand how significant a cost something is to me, and vice versa. To what yardstick do we measure these costs? Who, again, should decide whose cost is significantly higher? What do you mean by significantly higher? 0.1 points higher on an arbitrary scale? 0.001 points? 0.0000000001 points? A million? Who’s to decide this arbitrary scale in the first place?

    Therein lies the problems with your brand of morality. Highly inconsistent, totally incoherent as is all relativism.

  37. Scott Thong Says:

    So tell me little boy, killing all the inhabitants of Jericho (including children) was good? If you were a soldier serving under Joshua, you would have cheerfully beheaded eight-year-olds?

    As usual, a much repeated and therefore easily familiar to respond to accusation.

    So, responses:

    1) God is the creator, giver and owner of life. Therefore it is wholly in His right to take back the life he gave to people – the life they never paid Him for, and didn’t even appreciate Him for. God did something like this before, with Sodom and Gomorrah, and even the Great Flood. Only with Canaan, He used soldiers instead of fire and water – but the authority is the same.

    2) A hundred-thousand strong army sloooooowly headed towards an enemy town would have been ample warning to evacuate the women and children, leaving only the fighting men and stubborn citizens. Thus, when a city such as Jericho fell, only the warriors were slaughtered.

    3) While the Israelites were traversing the desert and Canaan, various tribes attacked them without provocation. They often would launch ambush raids on the rear of the camp, killing the stragglers – i.e. Israelites who were weak, old or otherwise slower to travel. Thus they first declared war on the Israelites. The Amalekites for one attacked Israelites for 400 years before the Israelite’s responded!

    4) God commanded the Israelites to first offer peace. If that was rejected (i.e. The Canaanites say, SCREW PEACE WE GONNA KILL YOU ALL) then they were to force the enemy to retreat out of the land. If battle continued to the end, they were to kill the men but spare the women and children. Whether the Israelites obeyed that command or whether they murdered the children is their fault, not God’s.

    5) The Canaanites were not exactly innocent people – they practised incest, bestiality and child sacrifice (*cough* ABORTION *cough*). Taking into account the thousands of murders they would have committed over the centuries before the Israelites arrived, their very culture had to be wiped clean so that future generations wouldn’t follow in those abominable practices. (However, the disobedient Israelites did NOT kill all the Canaanites – and soon took up those same evil habits, thus dooming Israel from the start to the same fate.)

    See also:

    http://www.christian-thinktank.com/qamorite.html

    http://www.christian-thinktank.com/rbutcher1.html

    Kudos to Lee Strobel for his research and interviews in A Case For Faith, which adresses the question of God commanding the slaughter of the Canaanites and other objections.

    Oh, and PS…

    NOOB.

  38. Scott Thong Says:

    Samuel, as Jamie says, that is the problem when we have no concrete form of moral absolutes (e.g. the Bible).

    Let’s say I want to kill you against your will, harvest your organs and use them to transplant into ten sick people, thus saving their lives. Is that morally wrong?

    I can say, “No it is morally right. Ten people are saved for the cost of just one life.” You would then disagree.

    In a subjective and morally relative world, neither of us has any authority to say “I am right and he is wrong!” We can only call for a vote. Then ten sick people would, unfortunately for you, vote for my organ-harvest plan.

    And if 2 billion Communists vote that the death of 100 million victims was morally right to build a utopian future, that would make it moral?

    If we do not have a solid basis, an unchanging guide to tell us what is ALWAYS right and ALWAYS wrong, then how do we tell what is an ABSOLUTE moral value? Everyone else has their own, equally valid opinion too.

    You have repeated several times that we can just ‘know’ what constitutes a moral right. But can you suggest how we would ‘know’ this? What process or procedure to follow? How to tell who is insane and who is selfish when they disagree with your ‘knowing’?

    Or are you the ABSOLUTE authority on what is definitely, undeniable, inarguably a moral right, and dismiss your critics as evil and illogical… Just as Stalin claimed and did?

  39. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Are you familiar with Kant’s “people are not to be used as ends?” You see morality is complicated if only because complete and total utilitarianism doesn’t work- people are more complicated and less rational. If you are actually familiar with some of the writing about this you could learn something (brief summary- the grater good is usually more comlicated than situations like this. It is good for the people being saved, but bad for everyone else who could be harvested at any time and dammit, just use your mind.)

    I don’t see how I am advocating subjective ethics- I agree with Harris’s position- there is one reality, one set of physics and one best set of ethics. Gravity isn’t determined by a vote and neither is right and wrong.

    The problem with your absolute moral value is it changed. Stone people? The Jews did in accordance with god’s law. But they they don’t anymore… Why do people continue to insist they have absolute moral value given by divine right. You want to see absolute moral value? read Burtrand Russell or learn about George Washington. They aren’t perfect but they did the best they could.

    I also like your “creator can destroy creation”. Guess abortion is okay- as is infanticide.

    Well you see, most people are sane. You obviously are the exception, but most people have a moral sense, empathy and the ability to reason.

    You can tell when someone is insane or selfish based on what they say and do. It really isn’t that hard. They might be very good at decieving people so you would need to look into their past.

    Yes!! I did it! I got you to contradict yourself! The title of this post and your arguement is that atheism leads to realitve morality and communism, but you just stated that Stalin had absolute morality!

  40. Scott Thong Says:

    I agree with Harris’s position- there is one reality, one set of physics and one best set of ethics. Gravity isn’t determined by a vote and neither is right and wrong.

    So how does Mr. Harris propose we determine this best set of ethics experimentally? Einstein’s gravity was by determined by mathematical formula and proven by experiments such as observing the bending od light by the Sun.

    What physical laws determine whether, say, abortion is morally right? Or what age boys and girls should be before they can have sex? Or whether I have the right to commit suicide?

    Your notion that an objective set of morals laws (yet excluding the Bible) is sooooo easy to find and can be written out in ISO:9002 compliant standard language is incredibly naive. Childish, even, I’m sorry to have to us the word.

    But SERIOUSLY – how do we determine the Perfect Moral Laws without resorting to culturally-biased philosophy, voting or force? Don’t just assume that the Laws are out there, floating in space, and we can all find them without even trying.

    ——————–

    The problem with your absolute moral value is it changed. Stone people? The Jews did in accordance with god’s law. But they they don’t anymore… Why do people continue to insist they have absolute moral value given by divine right.

    I wonder why I bother putting links if you’ll just ignore them. So here instead is an excerpt from http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/03/29/response-to-the-letter-to-dr-laura-on-homosexuality/ :

    Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ. – Colossians 2:16-17

    The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming — not the realities themselves. – Hebrews 10:1

    For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant. – Hebrews 9:15

    And for modern Judaism, an excerpt from http://www.win.net/ratsnest/archive-articles-4/fog0000000021.html :

    Q: I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?

    A: You are forbidden to kill him yourself. The death penalty may only be administered by a court of 23 ordained rabbis (see tractate Sanhedrin). Since there are no genuinely ordained rabbis (and won’t be until Elijah returns), no competent court can be convened.

    So as anyone who has more rational brains than polemic bigotry can see, Christians have good reason not to practise Old Testament laws. Or for that matter, Jewish laws.

    What has changed is not the absolute morality – God is still the boss, and what He says goes. Only we have matured as spiritual people, and no longer need to be put to bed at 10pm. It is we who have changed, but God is still the source of absolute morality.

    Sorry if I confused you over what my stand is.

    But you are trying to force me to adhere to Old Testament, Mosaic, Jewish laws because you can’t find any valid arguments against modern Christianity, aren’t you?

    ———————-

    I also like your “creator can destroy creation”. Guess abortion is okay- as is infanticide.

    The actual point is that no human should be permitted to commit murder – especially against babies, in the womb or outside – since no human is the author of life, the giver of the soul, or the master of all creation.

    ———————-

    Well you see, most people are sane. You obviously are the exception, but most people have a moral sense, empathy and the ability to reason.

    What was I saying about the usual liberal tactics? “If you can’t argue coherently, slander!”

    My point that you believe yourself to be the absolute authority on what is moral, and that you considereveryone who disagrees with your definition of morality as insane, has just been proven by your remarks. Thanks!

    ———————-

    Yes!! I did it! I got you to contradict yourself! The title of this post and your arguement is that atheism leads to realitve morality and communism, but you just stated that Stalin had absolute morality!

    ………… Someone who has more mercy for fools than me, please explain the concept of sarcasm to this pitiful person.

    For the record, this is what I said (and I did not edit it afterwards):

    Or are you the ABSOLUTE authority on what is definitely, undeniable, inarguably a moral right, and dismiss your critics as evil and illogical… Just as Stalin claimed and did?

    Claimed. It’s a small word, you must have missed it due to sleep deprivation and tired eyes.

    Sigh. The more you rant, the less coherent your babbling. Is it my fault for replying with too much information?

    Do yourself and us a favour – go to sleep, catch up on your rest, then when you’re mind is fresh you can come back and try again.

    If you’ve been awake a few days straight, that would satisfactorily explain the decaying standard of your comments since the first few ones that were actually quite readable.

  41. Brian Westley Says:

    Ah, as I suspected, you WOULD kill children if you thought your god ordered it. Yeah, real ‘moral’ there…

  42. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Several things
    1 It is quite clear the author of this post is insane and possibly dangerous individual. He is perfect rational- just completely disconnected from reality.
    2) Brian your reply says Febuary first, while my calender says today is January 31st. It is 12 AM here- are you across the dateline or something?
    3) Absolute morality refers to claims. It doesn’t have to be true- only absolute to be absolute morality.
    4) In the US being a liberal is only an insult in the red states. And slandering is a staple Republican tactic (and nutty leftist too).
    5) I don’t consider people with different views insane- I consider people who have absolutely no moral foundation other than obedience and who defend evil as insane.
    6) It isn’t slander if it is true.
    7) Yes, I am slightly sleep deprived. Curse you and your accurate insults! What’s next- I’m not black enough? Yes it is random, but slandering someone and then claiming that they slandered you is hypocritical.
    8) Determining ethics is tough. But we can determine some ethics the same way Galileo deduced that weight of a body doesn’t affect acceleration due to gravity- thought experiments. The rest I will have to think about.
    9) Absolute morality, by definition doesn’t change and applies equally to all people at all times. You can’t just redefine words to mean what you want them to.
    10) Moral rules aren’t out in space (I’m not a fracking Platonist)- but you can fnd them the same way you find rules for economics. I’ll give you a hint- it involves both studying and people.

  43. Scott Thong Says:

    Ah, as I suspected, you WOULD kill children if you thought your god ordered it. Yeah, real ‘moral’ there…

    Sir troll Westley, I shall merely copy-and-paste from one of my earlier replies to Samuel Skinner. Which you obviously did not read.

    ———–

    First I would use my God-given mind to ponder over whether God really spoke to me. I would also check it out with others, because as I have said many times, it takes independent witnesses to confirm that I am not being schizophrenic.

    Then I would use my God-given heart to ponder over whether the loving and just God I worship would ever command a despicable act. Does it contradict His words in the Bible, such as ‘Love all man as yourself’, ‘Thou shall not commit murder’, and ‘Love your enemy’?

    And I would also remember that God commanded through Paul to be obedient to the rulers of humans, including their laws. Which forbid me from killing anothr human, even if God’s law didn’t forbid me already.

    So you can see how your accusation is shallow and childish. It doesn’t take into account the full knowledge of the Bible that mature Christians have.

    ———–

    But let me put it in the most practical way possible.

    You accuse Christians of being WILLING to kill children IF they thought God commanded it.

    But meanwhile, thousands of babies are ACTUALLY murdered every day by liberals whose onlly justification is their own vain and selfish authority.

    Who is the immoral one here? Practically, not theoretically?

    I can tell you this, it wasn’t Bible believing, fundie Christians who did the following:

    http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=51268511&blogID=322352919

    Keep on justifying your own moralness by convincing yourself that Christians are the real evil people. I bet it makes you feel better about the tiny fingers, toes and face that are staring up at you from a pool of blood outside the abortion clinic.

  44. Scott Thong Says:

    5) I don’t consider people with different views insane- I consider people who have absolutely no moral foundation other than obedience and who defend evil as insane.

    Well when we’re such foolish, unwise and self-centred sacks of mental and emotional problems as we are, I wouldn’t trust us puny humans to decide what is REALLY good or REALLY bad. If God is real and He is holy and perfectly good, then why not trust His judgement instead?

    I would consider people whose moral foundation is based on what they feel is right at the time to be supremely arrogant. For example, when did you decide that abortion is morally good? What about before that time, did you think it is morally bad? How long before your mind is changed again?

    I repeat my statement that everyone has totally different opinions on morality, and unlike the competing theories of Relativityand Aether, no experiment exists to prove anyone’s opinions wrong or right in a way that everyone will accept as cold, hard, objective fact.

    —————-

    6) It isn’t slander if it is true.

    But remarks like “He is insane, evil and a total religious nutcase!” are opinion, not fact. Therefore your accusation cannot and will not be proven true by means of psychiatric examination, and is still libellious.

    —————-

    7) Yes, I am slightly sleep deprived. Curse you and your accurate insults! What’s next- I’m not black enough? Yes it is random, but slandering someone and then claiming that they slandered you is hypocritical.

    Your race or colour preference has no effect on your ability to write meaningful comments, while a lack of sleep does. I am merely observing that your quality of remarks seems to have deteriorated over time.

    ——————

    8 ) Determining ethics is tough. But we can determine some ethics the same way Galileo deduced that weight of a body doesn’t affect acceleration due to gravity- thought experiments. The rest I will have to think about.

    Galileo later carried out a real experiment to prove his theory. Then in order to verify it, others repeated his experiment and found that they got the same results. If they hadn’t, it would still be a completely theoretical notion.

    I don’t see how this can possibly be repeated for something as vague as ‘what is moral’. Morality is not a physical quantity to be determined. It can’t even be inferred from the number of deaths that occur as a result of an action.

    Morality is a philosophical concept, and there is no way to prove philosophy. If there were, Christianity would be a recognized science and an empirically proven fact.

    ——————–

    9) Absolute morality, by definition doesn’t change and applies equally to all people at all times. You can’t just redefine words to mean what you want them to.

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Absolute_morality :

    Moral absolutism is the belief that there are absolute standards against which moral questions can be judged, and that certain actions are right or wrong, devoid of the context of the act.

    “Absolutism” is often philosophically contrasted with moral relativism, which is a belief that moral truths are relative to social, cultural, historical or personal references, and to situational ethics, which holds that the morality of an act depends on the context of the act.

    It seems that you and I are actually both moral absolutists. The difference being that you believe that the perfect morality is out there to be discovered scientifically, while I believe it is dictated by an infinitely perfect God.

    I don’t see how I changed the meaning in my comments at all. According to both the OT and NT, some things are always wrong. It is just the punishment for those things that changes, and how we can be absolved of the punishment that is different – the root right/wrong is still absolutely there.

    ———————-

    10) Moral rules aren’t out in space (I’m not a fracking Platonist)- but you can fnd them the same way you find rules for economics. I’ll give you a hint- it involves both studying and people.

    Wow, BAD choice of example there mate!

    First up, there are dozens of competing schools of economic thought which cannot even agree on the theories to use. Next, none of them can definitely prove that their theory is correct by experiment.

    If economics were hard science, we wouldn’t keep having crashes that were completely unpredicted by the prevailing theories. The so-called ‘rules of economics’ keep on being defied. (You don’t see people breaking the law of gravity every day.)

    Human behaviour is just too non-linear. Predicting the economy is like predicting the weather – pure luck!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economics#Is_economics_a_science.3F

    Perhaps when we are omniscient enough to subjugate chaos theory to our wills, we can make economics a solid science. But until then, economists cannot predict the results of a single day at the markets the same way engineers can predict the results of a car hitting a tree at 50 km/h.

  45. Samuel Skinner Says:

    5 Humans are all we have dude. Beside I am a person and I seem to have no trouble at all judging your comments to be unambiguosly evil. It isn’t extrodinarily hard with someone as blatent as you.
    6 Insane- detached from reality
    Evil- willing to do things that involve hurting and killing nnocents for own benefit
    Total religious nutcase- defends previous two as holy
    7 The “not black enough” was a joke about treatment of Obama. It doesn’t have anything to do with black people, although it is partially about African Americans.
    8 Actually morality can be measured. The goal of morality is to make people happy. There are probably more nuanced definitions, but that is what is at its core. Since we know what makes people happy we can build on that.
    9 Simple- you happen to be wrong, and you just admited your arguement is wrong. Atheism doesn’t lead to relativism because I am an atheist and not a relativist.
    10 It is true people don’t agree entirely on economics. You know what? Some of those people are quacks- just like global warming deniers. Most of the basics in economics are agreed upon. Since morality is an infinately simpler subject I don’t see why it should be harder.
    Current economic does include and explain said crashes. Unfortunately not living in a command economy means the government can’t control the business cycle- that is the job of the Fed.
    The reason that economists will never be able to predict the markets is that said predictions are always factored into the markets.

    I think the main problem is that you have no idea what the words morality, evil, etc mean and in the case of morality, what its purpose is.

    Also three more things
    1 Where the heck did the smily come from?
    2 You never deny that you would do anything god commanded
    3 You claim abortion is baby killing. We here in non-facist countries recognize the first step towards facism is redefining words. For those of you unaware it isn’t a baby- it’s called a fetus until it is born; then its a baby. It falls under- words have meaning.

    Finally I find scary “obey the laws of the state”. Are you really a facist, or are you just creepy? Because I just finished reading American Facism and you fit the bill.

  46. Scott Thong Says:

    8 Actually morality can be measured. The goal of morality is to make people happy. There are probably more nuanced definitions, but that is what is at its core. Since we know what makes people happy we can build on that.

    So if it makes me unhappy that I see babies being butchered in their mother’s wombs, abortion is immoral? It’s back to opinions and relative definitions again.

    Happiness as the ultimate goal is actually called hedonism.

    —————–

    9 Simple- you happen to be wrong, and you just admited your arguement is wrong. Atheism doesn’t lead to relativism because I am an atheist and not a relativist.

    Atheism cannot have moral absolutism, because it does not believe in anything absolute. There is no God, only humans who only have a relative say in matters – no person can choose what is right for other people, according to moral relativism.

    ——————–

    10 It is true people don’t agree entirely on economics. You know what? Some of those people are quacks- just like global warming deniers. Most of the basics in economics are agreed upon. Since morality is an infinately simpler subject I don’t see why it should be harder.

    HA HA HA HA HA!!!

    Oh man you are SUCH a noob! You still believe in global warming? Do you even read the news?

    Record snow in US, Brazil, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia

    ‘All-Time’ High Antarctic Ice

    100 Scientists Dissent Global Warming

    CO2 levels are caused by rising temperature, not vice versa

    35 Scientific Errors in An Inconvenient Truth

    Data showing rising temperature comes from sensors placed next to barbeque grills, hot air vents, parking lot tarmac under the sun

    This is gonna lead us to a whole new set of discussions lol!

    Seriously, have you ever even looked at the facts instead of just absorbing what the weekend news reports?

    ————————
    I think the main problem is that you have no idea what the words morality, evil, etc mean and in the case of morality, what its purpose is.

    Perhaps my definition of morality is different.

    I define morality as the set of laws and guidelines for human behaviour as lined out by YHWH, in order to make us holy and sinless in His sight, through loving God and fellow humans, which leads to true peace and joy – not fleeting pleasure that passes for ‘happiness’.

    ———————–

    1 Where the heck did the smily come from?
    2 You never deny that you would do anything god commanded
    3 You claim abortion is baby killing. We here in non-facist countries recognize the first step towards facism is redefining words. For those of you unaware it isn’t a baby- it’s called a fetus until it is born; then its a baby. It falls under- words have meaning.

    The smiley is caused by WordPress automatically reading 8 and ) as a smiley command, 8)

    I do not deny that I would disobey God’s command, but I give the caveats that:

    A) I would seriously question if I really heard God’s command, and

    B) God would never command something that is immoral (by His standards, not relativistic human standards) so no problem there

    Abortion is ending the life of a human ‘fetus’, which would have grown into a full ‘baby’ if it had not been murdered. By a few weeks, the ‘fetus’ already has recognizable human features.

    I agree that fascism loves to redefine words. In fact, it’s standard liberal Newspeak to use labels such as ‘pro-choice’ to avoid the gruesome reality of technical language that would make people realize what abortion really is.

    For example:

    “Abortion – The skull of the 16-week old human is pierced with a pair of scissors and pried open. A vacuum is then placed into the skull cavity and the brains of the 16-week old human sucked out. The rest of the 16-week old human’s body is then cut up with the scissors and the entire 16-week old human is removed from the motehr’s womb.”

    How come in ‘non-fascist’ countries, it is wrong and immoral to execute a convicted serial killer, but it is good and moral to kill unborn humans who have never committed a crime?

    ——————

    Finally I find scary “obey the laws of the state”. Are you really a facist, or are you just creepy? Because I just finished reading American Facism and you fit the bill.

    As opposed to the anarchist dogma of BREAK THE LAWS AND SPREAD CHAOS? So I’m a fascist for not committing immoral crimes such as murder and rape – which the laws of the state are put into place to prevent?

    Or don’t you obey the laws of your country?

    Waitaminnit, aren’t Liberal Democrats the ones who want to FORCE people to pay more taxes and FORCE them to use only socialized healthcare?

    Chaotics, haters of order and speakers of doubletalk because they do not wish to have their behaviour defined as wrong.

    Ethical Alignments of Chaotic Liberals and Lawful Conservatives

  47. Brian Westley Says:

    Sir troll Westley, I shall merely copy-and-paste from one of my earlier replies to Samuel Skinner. Which you obviously did not read.

    Yes, I did read it, and if all your objections are fulfilled, you would go out and kill children if you sincerely thought your god wanted you to do that.

  48. Scott Thong Says:

    You speak in theory again, because all my objections will never be fulfilled. What, you think I’m Anakin from Revenge of the Sith or something?

    Meanwhile, libs like you actually kill babies every single minute of every single day.

  49. Scott Thong Says:

    Having been repeatedly soundly trounced, Samuel Skinner now attempts to smear me on various blogs as a supporter God-commanded baby killing.

    http://friendlyatheist.com/2008/01/31/that-looks-quite-circular/

    http://www.shelleytherepublican.com/2008/02/01/what-is-atheism-2-atheist-family-life.aspx

    Likely he just runs a search on ‘atheism’ and proceeds to troll-bomb wherever he clicks. Not having his own blog, he did not realize how easy it is to find out just where he’s been referring me to.

    Too bad he always gives a link to one of my comments where mention of my child-murder just happens to be absent, amidst the other comments where it is at least alluded to, such as my comment immediately before that one.

    Congrats, Skinner! You exemplify the liberal Moonbat left! Lol!

  50. wits0 Says:

    Scott, there’s no such thing as absolute morality possible in a relative existence but there is a generally agreed code of ethical conduct which many different societies share. This would be the Golden Rule of mankind. There is no need for a believe in a monotheistic God to follow that. A monotheistic religion can also fail to live up to the Golden Rule despite all great claims.

    I agree with you that abortion is morally wrong for the life it takes but than again the moment of time when life (by way of individualized consciousness actually enters the fetus)appears, varies. Only a real seer van tell. Therefore, for the sake of safety, except for exceptional circumstances, abortion is not good.

  51. anonymous Says:

    Communists are de facto atheists. Atheists believe that there is no God – no higher power per se.

    You forgot the part saying that an atheist is not automatically a commie, though. I´m an atheist. I can´t stand commies. Communism is by itself a flawed idea and will never work, it ignores the human nature.

    It is not that atheism is by definition immoral. It is that by definition, atheism cannot have absolute morals, only situation-relative ones.

    Yet normally, every human has this funny little thing called a conscience. Nice thing that nature/evolution/pick your favourite deity has gifted us with. Not 100% perfect but normally working like a charm.

    Granted. But within a particular belief system (at least, for the theistic ones) the set of moral codes and laws is treated as absolute – given by an absolute authority and meant to be absolute and not open for rewriting.

    Well, that ain´t christianity for sure. There have been more people killed by christians “in the name of god” than by anything else. (Communism being the only possible rival in that category.)

  52. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Err… I think someone is completely disocciated from reality. Liberal moonbat left? Okay- I’m from California where people come in three flavors- leftist, selfish bastard or hippie.

    Once again you continue to condone genocide and murder- you still haven’t responded, just danced around the issue like a politician with their shoes on fire.

    For the last time abortion isn’t genocide or murder. You can redefine words, you… Jainist fundy, but abortion kills fetuses who aren’t accorded full human rights- something about being nonsentient. And before you get into “why don’t we kill retarded people” (another one of his posts) the answer is because it is possible to repair them and there is the fear one day we could end up like them and so we feel empathy.

    In addition this post is about absolute ethics. Responding to accusations of murder, by stating “you do to” simply means you aren’t ethical by even your own standard.

  53. Scott Thong Says:

    I’m back.

    —————————-

    Replies to wits0

    I agree with you that abortion is morally wrong for the life it takes but than again the moment of time when life (by way of individualized consciousness actually enters the fetus)appears, varies. Only a real seer van tell. Therefore, for the sake of safety, except for exceptional circumstances, abortion is not good.

    wits0, I believe this conundrum would be greatly cleared up if people knew how early a ‘no humans rights fetus’ already looks like a miniature human being:

    http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=51268511&blogID=322352919

    There is no way that that can be mistaken for ‘just a clump of cells’, even at just 11 weeks – the First Trimester, and totally legal for abortion!

    Those who continue to argue that life starts at any point later than actual conception are intentionally deluding and twisting the facts.

    Simple comparison: An ovum or a sperm cell or a skin cell will die after a few days if left on its own, or placed in a womb.

    Whereas a fertilized egg will grow into an embryo, then a fetus, then a baby, then a fully sentient human if placed in a womb and not stabbed in the head with a surgical knife.

    Therefore, abortion is preventing a human being from having the chance to live.

    ——————————–

    Replies to anonymous

    You forgot the part saying that an atheist is not automatically a commie, though. I´m an atheist. I can´t stand commies. Communism is by itself a flawed idea and will never work, it ignores the human nature.

    Totally agree with you there, in that atheists (spiritual philosophy) are not automatically communists (political philosophy). And also that Communism cannot work because humans are selfish, lazy and moronic B*stards.

    Well, that ain´t christianity for sure. There have been more people killed by christians “in the name of god” than by anything else. (Communism being the only possible rival in that category.)

    Sorry to interject, but:

    Extremists of ‘a certain religion’ kill more people EVERY SINGLE YEAR in this modern age than were executed in the entire 350 years of the Spanish Inquisition.

    Extremists of ‘a certain religion’ kill more people EVERY SINGLE DAY in this modern age than the Ku Klux Klan has lynched in the last 50 years.

    http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/

    The left loves to demonize Christians like we’re about to rise up and burn them at stake any day now. But how many fundamentalist Christian attacks have there actually been these past few decades?

    Strangely, they simultaneously support ‘a certain religion’ in the name of multicultural tolerance, to the point where they even go to the point of sacrificing their cherished ‘Separation of religion and state, and no religion in public areas, and no sponsorship or public funding of religion’ to pander to ‘a certain religion’.

    Here are many examples in the USA: http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/07/24/american-civil-liberties-union-religious-bias/

    There are also some who are of the opinion that the Mother-Gaia-worshiping Green movement has killed even more than Stalin’s Commies with their banning of DDT.

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/10/19/rachel-carson-environmentalist-queen-of-green-genocide/

    ———————————–

    Replies to Samuel Skinner

    Err… I think someone is completely disocciated from reality. Liberal moonbat left? Okay- I’m from California where people come in three flavors- leftist, selfish bastard or hippie.

    Here’s where absolutes and relatives come in: In California, almost everyone supports the same view as Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party, and that is normal. But to Southern Baptist states, Californians are flaming liberals and lean so far left, they give the Tower of Pisa a run for its money.

    Once again you continue to condone genocide and murder- you still haven’t responded, just danced around the issue like a politician with their shoes on fire.

    Fine, I’ll say it outright: I DO NOT CONDONE MURDER OR GENOCIDE. If ‘God’ asked me to do it, I would not – the same conscience He gave me and the same commandments He uttered would not allow me to.

    For the last time abortion isn’t genocide or murder. You can redefine words, you… Jainist fundy, but abortion kills fetuses who aren’t accorded full human rights- something about being nonsentient. And before you get into “why don’t we kill retarded people” (another one of his posts) the answer is because it is possible to repair them and there is the fear one day we could end up like them and so we feel empathy.

    Dear readers, can you see the INCREDIBLY BLATANT DOUBLE STANDARDS here?

    Retarded people CANNOT be killed, because they can one day be fixed by medical advances and also because we may one day be that way too, so we must have empathy.

    But fetuses CAN be killed, even though with no medical interference at all they would grow into fully aware people will full human rights, in a matter of months. Need I also remind you that we were all fetuses ourselves – yet Skinner does not seem to feel any empathy for them.

    I believe the real reason that liberals can still argue for abortion is that the abortionists and pro-abortion groups like Planned Parenthood intentionally do no let the mother see the child, the ultrasound, the dead body… Or even think of it as a human life.

    Once upon a time, blacks were not granted full human rights. Neither were women. Way back when in Ancient Greece, atheism was punishable by death. But did any of these things make them NOT human?

    Similarly, just because the words in a binder full of papers says “Fetuses have no human rights”, does this change the fact that they ARE IN FACT HUMAN BEINGS?

    Who even decided that fetuses do not get human rights? Why… Could it have been the same people who want to have abortions freely?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roe_v._Wade

    Why yes! It was! As long as the mother feels even slightly anooyed that she is pregnant, she can kill the baby to end the ‘emotional pain’ she feels!

    Let me clarify: THE BABY IS MURDERED NOT BECAUSE OF MEDICAL NEED, PHYSICAL PAIN OR A LIFE THREATENING SITUATION – BUT BECAUSE THE IRRESPONSIBLE MOTHER SIMPLY REGRETS NOT USING A CONTRACEPTIVE.

    They have arms, legs, rib cages, beating hearts, a skull, a face, a brain. They are NOT a tiny clump of undifferentiated cells by the time the woman even KNOWS she is pregnant!

    If you’re gonna define a fetus as not-yet-human, then let me put it this way: Abortion is the act of rushing to kill a fetus before it legally becomes a human with full rights.

    ———————–

    I will state it again: Christians are repeatedly accused of PERHAPS, MAYBE, MIGHT, INTEND TO, POTENTIALLY, POSSIBLY, HOPE TO, THERE IS A CHANCE, EVENTUALLY COULD kill people, children and babies because they THINK their God commands them to. Yet nothing even remotely like this has happened in centuries.

    Meanwhile, these same liberal smear-mongers murder young human beings in the wombs of their mothers – supposedly the safest place in the world, with the most loving person in the world – under the pretext that the babies are a few months away from gaining ‘full human rights’ and therefore are not, in reality, human.

    Millions of babies. Every single year.

    Alleged, purported, unproven Christian intention to commit genocide… Versus thousands of actual and real infanticides every single day.

    (I ask you, is it SO DIFFICULT for liberals to just USE that damn condom that they so champion as the saviour of the world from HIV/AIDS?)

    I’ll end with this joke from
    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2008/02/01/moonbat-jokes/ :

    A pro-choice, 30-year old, liberal Moonbat was looking through a yard sale when she found an antique lamp. As she rubbed clean to see if it would make a good bong for smoking weed, a genie appeared out of it.

    The genie said: “I will grant you one wish. Name your heart’s desire, and it will come true!”

    Without hesitation, the Moonbat commanded: “I wish that every woman could freely choose to have an abortion!”

    The genie snapped his magic fingers, altered time and space, and POOF!…

    The Moonbat’s mother had an abortion when she got pregnant 31 years ago.

    See how YOU like having a vacuum stuck in your brain, Skinner.

  54. wits0 Says:

    Scott: “I believe this conundrum would be greatly cleared up if people knew how early a ‘no humans rights fetus’ already looks like a miniature human being.”

    But from appearance wise, so does the fetus of a dog, e.g., during the earlier stages also look like a human one. ;)

  55. Scott Thong Says:

    I think you mean embryo, not fetus. And the dog fetus grows up to be a -suprirse! – dog. Any guesses what the human fetus grows up to be?

    Compare this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recapitulation_theory#Haeckel.27s_theory

    With the babies from (the oft reposted link):

    http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=51268511&blogID=322352919

    In any case, Haeckel’s theory has been found to be both disproven and the evidence debunked as intentionally falsified by the author.

    http://hastenministries.blogspot.com/2007/01/evolution-redefined.html

  56. wits0 Says:

    Yes, embryo. ;)
    Scott: “Any guesses what the human fetus grows up to be?”

    Sometimes leftards! :D

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  58. Ghoulslime Says:

    The joke is on you, assclown:

    http://ravingatheists.com/forum/showpost.php?p=468486&postcount=1

  59. Scott Thong Says:

    LAUGH.

  60. Scott Thong Says:

    So… Samuel Skinner, and probably most pro-abortion supporters, consider killing a baby in the womb as moral and ethical simply because they are ‘fetuses’ and not ‘baby humans’ and therefore have no human rights.

    So tell me how abortion makes the distinction between ‘nonhuman fetus’ and ‘survive-able human baby':

    Times Online Britain – Fifty babies a year are alive after abortion

  61. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Back to the topic of this post: morality. If you want a respnce to your abortion stance use google- it will take too long otherwise. (however if you keep posting on it, I may respond- mostly I hit atheism and atheist from google. My reason is in the 8th paragraph.)

    Scott started out this post stating that only religious people can be moral and that atheism leads to communism (and Stalinism or Maoism). His arguement seemed to be a combo of “you need God for an absolute morality” and “since the bible is written by the creator of the universe it should give us a moral guide that, we having flawed reason can’t get”. I immediately attacked him with “if god asks you to kill a bady would you do it?”. Scott’s responce- I’d check with my friends to insure I’m not crazy.

    That is… disturbing. I proceded to accuse him of being nuts (as did another poster) and copied the url on other sites so that some one else could kick so sanity into him. Fortunately Scott had a new responce by then- you do it to (aka abortion). Trust me abortion would take a long time to go over how you are wrong, but that isn’t the important part. The important thing is it is a “well you do to” responce”. In short he was admitting he would do it.

    Fortunately after calling me a troll and liberal moonbat, Scott realized he needed a clear responce.
    Fine, I’ll say it outright: I DO NOT CONDONE MURDER OR GENOCIDE. If ‘God’ asked me to do it, I would not – the same conscience He gave me and the same commandments He uttered would not allow me to.

    Okay you completely changed your standard. Now Scott is embracing relative morality as the reason why he wouldn’t do these crimes. First not everyone has a conscience and second not everyone subscibes to the same interpretion (or version) of the ten commendments (or bible for that matter). In addition Scott’s defense against the old testament is that as people matured they were given more mature moral principles to follow (I put it badly, but you get the idea).

    The problem with all this is that it isn’t actually absolute morality. If different people are held to different rules at different times and if the rules are principles or your conscience- it isn’t a universal standard. We know this for the simple reason that Christians disagree on moral and ethical issues and have disagreed for the last 1400 years.

    In short Scott’s entire arguement falls flat.

    Finally a degression- I won’t be able to write all I want to, but I wish to make this perfectly clear. Scott implied that I am pro-Islam. Now I’m not sure what my position is, but it is definately not an anti-American leftist. The reason I fight against theist nonsense from Scott is that without getting rid of faith and all the madness of theism we can not possibly stand against Islam. I regard theists as traitors- people who are unwilling to think and risk the heartache and difficulties of changing their mind and thus expose our nation and my fellow citizens to the possibility of losing to the Muslim world. Make no mistake- we are currently fighting against people who really and truely believe in the faith- Islam- and are willing to die, but worse kill for it. Scott’s position is simple-these people are our enemies- honor killing, killing apostates, not being able to have democracy because the insane level of reactionaryness and antisemetism amoung the populance. With that I agree. But Scott doesn’t come to the logical conclusion- he would rather believe that there faith is wrong than admit faith itself is flawed. And as long as he is unwilling to see past that he will be unable to come up with a better arguements than “they have the wrong faith”. Saying that murder and the like are wrong he feels he must have a god… but what if their crimes are following the commendments and their consciences?

    The fact is Scott needs absolute ethical standars, standards which he cannot get from faith, but only through evidence, logic, reason and empathy. He can claim all he likes that theirs is a false religion, but the fact of the matter is the Koran is no more or less consistant and logical than his bible. Choose. Do you want morality or your faith? Because only by double think can you have them both… and then you become exactly like your opponents.

  62. NAND Gate Fetishist Says:

    First of all, don’t ever call me “mate”

    “Seeing that as I also am uncircumcized, do not sacrifice young male goats for my sins and regularly eat pork, I just might be joining you down there Fetish mate…

    Oops, I forgot, I’M NOT JEWISH lol!”

    BUT… jesus was a jew, and stated that “I come not to destroy the (Jewish) law, but to enforce it. not one iota of the law shall be subtracted from or added to, that will be so until the end of time” (it’s a paraphrase, but you’ll still find something to that exact effect in the new testament). Also, the uncircumsised will not go to heaven, according to your precious New Testament. In fact, noone “defiled” by a woman is allowed into heaven, in your heavily patriarchal, mysoginistic, antisemiticm antiarabist religion

    I also take offence at “On absolute morality, this particular Christian’s logicking is: If the Bible is proven accurate and true on things that can be proven (e.g. historical events), then what it says about things that can’t be proven (e.g. existence of God, God’s law is the best way) can be inferred to be true as well.” however, the things in the bible can be proven to be false. The irrational number pi was unknown to it’s authors: the substitute was 3:1 – this is clearly proves that it is not the divinely inspired writing of an omniscient god. Bats are described as birds (instead of mammals), long hair is described as a shame unto a man. You will need to state in what way you think that the bible is proven to be accurate, before you make nay such assertions. The onus of proof lies with you.

    “Your basic quantum multiple universes theory that superhero comics are so fond of using.” – well, somebody citing comic books as a reference certainly doesn’t need to have his thinking or assertions questioned or challenged in any way! Seriously, if you think, as you assert, that comic books accurately portray any scientific theory (let alone philosophical conundrums about the nature of cause-effect relationships) then you REALLY need a better edyoocashun.

    “So even for just one example, we find no consensus on what is ‘The Universal and Objective Law of…” – yes and no. For the particular example you give, there is no consensus. On other matters, this may not prove to be the case. Your understanding of philosophy is so rudimentary, I could have debated it as an elementary school-child (and I was no wunderkind)

    You would think, wouldn’t you, that if the joos had ever been in bondage in egypt (a society widely renowned for recording everything, even the number of cats owned by it’s ordinary citizens) – they would have mentioned it in multiple instances, in clear terms. YET, no record of their tenure in egypt exists. This is similiar to accounts of jezus’ life.

    “Testament means the same as covenant, didn’t you know? So Old Covenant, New Covenant.”

    American Heritage Dictionary: “Testament:Something that serves as tangible proof or evidence: as in “The spacious plan of the city is a testament to the foresight of its founders.”” It is a covenant to the foresight of its founders?

    Besides which, christianity is a made up religion based on falsehood. Just like all of them! Tada! You can’t prove me wrong, so I wind . okay, Herewego:

    “Covenant: n.

    1. A binding agreement; a compact. See Synonyms at bargain.
    2. Law
    1. A formal sealed agreement or contract.
    2. A suit to recover damages for violation of such a contract.
    3. In the Bible, God’s promise to the human race.”

    “Nor is God fickle and changing – He already had everything planned out, but revealed Part 1 to Moses and Part 2 through Jesus.” Why would part 1 contradict part 2 (or rather, the other way around?) To me this proves the imperfection of god. Well, it would, had good first been proven to exist!

    “Which counts for more? In secular law, intent to kill is a far lesser crime than actually carrying out murder.” – if this is the case, why is the act of planning a terrorist attack considered to be as bad as actually carrying one out? The punishment is the same, so we must assume the intent is as bad as the actual act.

    I for one, propose that you do not follow jewish law BECAUSE YOU DO NOT WANT TO. That’s all you are really interested in – doing exactly as you want to. It is evident from your writings that you engage in no behaviour or thinking that is outside the bounds of what you yourself wish to believe to be true and right (No shit we all do, but at least most of us aren’t as righteous about it as you are! Get off your high horse! Be ever humble, ye of the christian flock!). To all those reading this, I would advise you – be careful of those who seek to destroy/vanquish evil – they invariably become it.

    I didn’t have enough time to make this airtight, but just be more critical of the things you say

  63. Scott Thong Says:

    Now Scott is embracing relative morality as the reason why he wouldn’t do these crimes. First not everyone has a conscience and second not everyone subscibes to the same interpretion (or version) of the ten commendments (or bible for that matter).

    We know this for the simple reason that Christians disagree on moral and ethical issues and have disagreed for the last 1400 years.

    Actually, I haven’t embraced moral relativity quite yet. God’s absolute moral standard is veeeeeeerrrrryyyy simple: If you sin, you die.

    So the Canaanites sinned (majorly), and they deserved to die. God used the Israelites to kill them off in accordance with His absolute justice – and He didn’t use me, so no ethical conundrum there.

    And I have sinned, I deserve to die. Luckily, Jesus died in my place.

    Repeated again: God’s moral standards are absolute. Different understanding and application by Christians does not change God’s absolute standards, it merely reflects our futilely flimsy wisdom.

    Comparison time:

    God says to Moses, “Murder is bad.” Moses writes it down.

    Christian A reads Moses’ diary, says: “Hey murder is bad.”

    Christian B reads Moses’ diary, says: “Murder is bad but fetuses are not humans so let’s abort some, even if sometimes when they’re aborted they survive and it becomes Murder One.”

    Does all this debate this change what God intended? Compare to:

    Force = mass x acceleration

    Physicist A says: “Yeah, Newton was right.”

    Physicist B says: “Newton’s a nutter.”

    Does this change the laws of physics?

    Ergo, whatever Christians may THINK, God’s laws are still there, as unchanged as ever.

    ————–

    Scott implied that I am pro-Islam.

    Wut? Quote me on it. I can’t find it nowhere.

    However, I do accuse the liberal left of vapidly pandering to Islam, while at the same time attacking Christians on the grounds of ‘separation of church and state.’ Which to me, is incredible hyposcrisy.

    While Congress is busy passing yet another law condemning the Old Testament as ‘hate speech’, someone will be sneaking suitcase nukes into Capitol Hill… And it won’t be Christian fundies.

    ———————

    And as long as he is unwilling to see past that he will be unable to come up with a better arguements than “they have the wrong faith”. Saying that murder and the like are wrong he feels he must have a god… but what if their crimes are following the commendments and their consciences?

    That is exactly my point! If you do not believe that there is an absolute moral standard and every other moral standard is wrong, who are you to say that the terrorists are behaving immorally?

    You say they are immoral to kill nonbelievers, they say you are immoral to even be a nonbeliever. What makes your idea of morality any more correct than theirs, when it is all based on culture?

    ON WHAT CRITERIA DO YOU JUDGE THAT THEY ARE WRONG AND YOU ARE RIGHT?

    That is my entire argument… That from an atheist point of view where we all descended from blobs of bacterial goo and created our own morality, no one culture has the right to say “I am correcter than you!” to another culture.

    A Christian can simply say, “Because the Bible says so!” What can you quote? A non-existatn scientififc study to find the quantum physical laws of ethics?

    ———————–

    He can claim all he likes that theirs is a false religion, but the fact of the matter is the Koran is no more or less consistant and logical than his bible.

    I seriously beg to differ. At the risk of being fatwaed, I contend that the Bible’s alleged inconsistencies and scientific flaws can be explained away while… You get the picture.

    The way I see it, only one of the following can be correct: Atheism, Christianity, Islam, etc.

    The equation is NOT ‘Atheism VS every religion’.

    ————————

    And as for abortion… Say it how you want, cite whatever laws you wish. The law I adhere to is the law of YHWH – absolute and unchanging.

    If this were the 1930s, abortion would be illegal and you would be unable to argue that fetuses = no human rights. I would say abortion is wrong as it takes away a human life.

    Now that it’s the 2000’s, abortion is legal – even up to 24 weeks when the ‘no human rights’ fetus can survive outside the womb! You can now argue that abortion is moral, because human law says so. But I still say abortion is wrong, as it takes away a human life.

    THAT is what I mean by absolute morality. No matter what you or I or Osama may say, what God said stands for all time.

  64. NAND Gate Fetishist Says:

    I beg of you money. To be precise, 120 Us dollars. If you agree to this, you are in accordance with your scriptures; if you refuse, you will find you are in violation of those scriptures you claim are infallible… If you agree, I will give you my PayPal information, and I will know that there is some merit to christian teachings, because their followers truly follow it. If you do not complete this act, I will suggest you not ask anyone to follow a system that you yourself do not believe in. Read Mark and Luke if you are interested in where I get this idea from.

  65. Scott Thong Says:

    What am I doing discussing Bible exegesis and hermeneutics with amateurs like NAND Gate Fetishist who get their knowledge third-hand off discussion boards?

    BECAUSE IT’S FUN TO PWN NOOBS!!!!!

    ——————

    BUT… jesus was a jew, and stated that “I come not to destroy the (Jewish) law, but to enforce it. not one iota of the law shall be subtracted from or added to, that will be so until the end of time” (it’s a paraphrase, but you’ll still find something to that exact effect in the new testament).

    And He did fulfil it – by becoming the final sacrifice that released us humans from the OT Mosaic laws of sin, and put us under the NT law of the Spirit of life (grace).

    Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. – Romans 8:1-2

    And as I recall, Jesus only had spiritual children (Dan Brown fiction aside, lol) – so I’m not genetically related to Jews at all.

    ——————–

    Also, the uncircumsised will not go to heaven, according to your precious New Testament. In fact, noone “defiled” by a woman is allowed into heaven, in your heavily patriarchal, mysoginistic, antisemiticm antiarabist religion

    Oo you’re such the Bible expert. Quote me the verses that say that. While you’re at it, you may want to pre-emptively shoot down all the verses I will respond with that show up your shallow understanding of Bible exegesis and hermeneutics.

    Paul says the EXACT OPPOSITE of what you claim:

    Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. – Colossians 3:11

    …there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith. Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Not at all! Rather, we uphold the law. – Romans 3:30-31

    Was a man already circumcised when he was called? He should not become uncircumcised. Was a man uncircumcised when he was called? He should not be circumcised. Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. Keeping God’s commands is what counts. – 1st Corinthians 7:18

    And I can’t find where the Bible says woman = damned.

    Perhaps you mean the verses that mean ‘Whoever is sexually impure = damned.’ Which applied also to man-man sex, woman-woman sex, human-animal sex, and in fact ANY sex outside a man-woman marriage.

    Lol noob repeating what he heard on Radio Free Polemico!

    ——————

    however, the things in the bible can be proven to be false. The irrational number pi was unknown to it’s authors: the substitute was 3:1 – this is clearly proves that it is not the divinely inspired writing of an omniscient god.

    Did it ever occur to you, expert artisan and experienced metalworker that you are, that there exists no bowl on Earth that has ZERO THICKNESS? The last time I looked, bowls have greater circumference on the outside than on the inside.

    He made the Sea of cast metal, circular in shape, measuring ten cubits from rim to rim and five cubits high. It took a line of thirty cubits to measure around it. It was a handbreadth in thickness, and its rim was like the rim of a cup, like a lily blossom. – 1st Kings 23, 26

    The Bible actually says, pi = about 3.14:

    Using eighteen inches for one cubit, we have the following:

    outer diameter: 10 cubits, or 180 inches
    outer radius: 5 cubits, or 90 inches
    inner circumference: 30 cubits, or 540 inches

    To find the “Jewish” or “Bible” value for pi, we need to have the inner radius. Once we have that value, we can plug it into the formula for the circumference and compare with the given circumference value of 540 inches.

    Since the thickness of the bowl is given as one handsbreadth, then the inner radius must be:

    90 – 4 = 86 inches

    Let’s do the calculations:

    inner radius: 86 inches
    inner circumference: 540 inches

    The circumference formula is C = 2(pi)r, which gives us:

    540 = 2(pi)(86)
    540 = 172(pi)

    Solving, we get pi = 540/172 = 135/43 = 3.1395348837…, or about 3.14

    What, are you gonna jump on the case of the ancient Jews for not filling the entire Bible with the sentence, “And Hiram declared, pi = 3.14285714285714285174….”?

    Even if ZERO THICKNESS bowls existed, and the Jews actually made them (since the bowls desribe were actually made), it could simply be that the Jewish scribes left out some numbers by mistake or convention – which also explains the different numbers of people recorded in censuses.

    Human mistake, not God’s mistake. No one ever claimed that the Bible we have today is mistake-less, only that God’s original word is perfect and His important commands and plan for humanity are still correct in our Bibles.

    ———————————-

    Bats are described as birds (instead of mammals), long hair is described as a shame unto a man. You will need to state in what way you think that the bible is proven to be accurate, before you make nay such assertions. The onus of proof lies with you.

    Here is where noobs really shouldn’t even go near a schoarly discussion. If you read the original Hebrew, you would know that the the word translated to the English ‘bird’ below…

    ‘These are the birds you are to detest and not eat because they are detestable: the eagle, the vulture, the black vulture…the stork, any kind of heron, the hoopoe and the bat. – Leviticus 11:13, 19

    Actually means ‘winged creature’ in Hebrew:

    The problem is not one of biological classification but of semantics and translation. The Hebrew word in Leviticus 11:13-25 is “oph”. (G V Wigram, Englishman’s Hebrew and Chaldee Concordance, Bagster & Sons, pp 911-912)

    In a similar passage in Deuteronomy 14:11-20 the word is “psippor” in verse 11 and “oph” in 19-20. (Wigram p. 1079) Neither word completely corresponds to the English “bird” or “fowl”.

    “Tsippor” is used of birds and bats. “Oph” also refers to birds and bats. However, when “Oph” is qualified by the word “creeping things” (Hebrew = “sheretz”; Wigram p. 1327) it refers to insects.

    If we translate “oph” and “tsippor” as “flying creatures” or “winged creatures” the skeptic’s complaint is answered since both birds and bats are winged creatures!

    Long hair as shame unto a man doesn’t really count as ‘objective science’ d00d… It was the culture at the time anyway.

    Which, I may add, is preferable to a culture where long-haired hippies get stoned on their bongs and throw their own poop at the people who actually fight and die to protect them from terrorists and Red Commies.

    Yeah, calling you d00d is way better than ‘mate’. Thanks for the indirect tip.

    —————————-

    “Your basic quantum multiple universes theory that superhero comics are so fond of using.” – well, somebody citing comic books as a reference certainly doesn’t need to have his thinking or assertions questioned or challenged in any way! Seriously, if you think, as you assert, that comic books accurately portray any scientific theory (let alone philosophical conundrums about the nature of cause-effect relationships) then you REALLY need a better edyoocashun.

    Here you are just just being facetious. I see nothing wrong with stating the fact that a REAL PHYSICS THEORY is commonly used in comic books.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiverse

    The real person needing ‘edyoocashun’ is you, blur d00d, for not knowing that multiple-realities is a serious scientific theory!

    SO IGNORANT NOOOOOOOOOOB!!!!!

    I have to bring you to my kid cousin’s show and tell class and let the Internet-savvy kindergarteners have a good laugh!

    —————————

    Your understanding of philosophy is so rudimentary, I could have debated it as an elementary school-child (and I was no wunderkind)

    You seriously prove your point in brackets with the wunderness of your entire comment. ZING!

    —————————

    You would think, wouldn’t you, that if the joos had ever been in bondage in egypt (a society widely renowned for recording everything, even the number of cats owned by it’s ordinary citizens) – they would have mentioned it in multiple instances, in clear terms. YET, no record of their tenure in egypt exists. This is similiar to accounts of jezus’ life.

    OH MY MORGAN FREEMAN SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOBB!!!!!!!

    Pick up a book sometime will ya!!!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Jews_in_Egypt#Ancient_and_BiblicalIn the Elephantine papyri, caches of legal documents and letters written in Aramaic amply document the lives of a community of Jewish soldiers stationed in there as part of a frontier garrison in Egypt for the Achaemenid Empire.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyksos

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historicity_of_Jesus#Greco-Roman_sources

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historicity_of_Jesus#Jewish_records

    ——————————

    “Testament means the same as covenant, didn’t you know? So Old Covenant, New Covenant.”

    American Heritage Dictionary: “Testament:Something that serves as tangible proof or evidence: as in “The spacious plan of the city is a testament to the foresight of its founders.”” It is a covenant to the foresight of its founders?

    Besides which, christianity is a made up religion based on falsehood. Just like all of them! Tada! You can’t prove me wrong, so I wind . okay, Herewego:

    “Covenant: n.

    1. A binding agreement; a compact. See Synonyms at bargain.
    2. Law
    1. A formal sealed agreement or contract.
    2. A suit to recover damages for violation of such a contract.
    3. In the Bible, God’s promise to the human race.”

    Why did you just prove me correct on the fact that Testament = Covenant = Agreement = God’s promise = Law of God?

    Besides, I’ve been proving you wrong all throughout my comment. So I ‘wind’.

    ——————————-

    “Nor is God fickle and changing – He already had everything planned out, but revealed Part 1 to Moses and Part 2 through Jesus.” Why would part 1 contradict part 2 (or rather, the other way around?) To me this proves the imperfection of god. Well, it would, had good first been proven to exist!

    How do they contradict one another? Be specific, and remember to note the first verse I quoted to you and also this explanation of why Christians don’t follow Mosaic law.

    ——————————–

    “Which counts for more? In secular law, intent to kill is a far lesser crime than actually carrying out murder.” – if this is the case, why is the act of planning a terrorist attack considered to be as bad as actually carrying one out? The punishment is the same, so we must assume the intent is as bad as the actual act.

    WTF do you get your unreality from?

    Planned but not carried out:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2000_millennium_attack_plots#LAX_bombing_plot – In the year 2000, Al-Qaeda attempted to bomb LAX during the millennium holiday, although the bomber was caught at the U.S. port of entry. Ahmed Ressam was sentenced to 22 years in prison.

    Actually carried out:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zacarias_Moussaoui – On May 3, 2006, the jury reached a verdict: that 9/11 plotter Zacarias Moussaoui be sentenced to six consecutive life terms in prison without the possibility of parole.

    ————————–

    To all those reading this, I would advise you – be careful of those who seek to destroy/vanquish evil – they invariably become it.

    To all reading this, would you rather mix with people who embrace evil without a struggle?

    From your mention of terrorism and your quote about vanquishing evil, let me a make a guess: You think Bush is the world’s worst person, don’t you?

    ————————

    I didn’t have enough time to make this airtight, but just be more critical of the things you say

    d00d, your comment is so air-loose, the entire Earth would lose its atmosphere if you were in charge of designing gravity.

    ———————

    I beg of you money. To be precise, 120 Us dollars. If you agree to this, you are in accordance with your scriptures; if you refuse, you will find you are in violation of those scriptures you claim are infallible… If you agree, I will give you my PayPal information, and I will know that there is some merit to christian teachings, because their followers truly follow it. If you do not complete this act, I will suggest you not ask anyone to follow a system that you yourself do not believe in. Read Mark and Luke if you are interested in where I get this idea from.

    Oo oo! I know where from!

    FROM THE HYPOCRITICAL BAD MEN WHO WERE ALSO NOOBS AT THEOLOGY WHEN THEY TRIED TO TEST JESUS WITH PAYING TAXES TO CAESER LOL!!!

    What I believe in is that you are not making any sense at all here. If I bet money, I am a good Christian? How could every pastor whom I ever talked to have lied to me about this fact? I submit to your will, O Banker of Nigeria!

    Vague allusions to Scripture that you yourself never read, try to understand or quote do not a skilful debator make.

    BUT THEY SURE DO MAKE A MASTER DEBATOR HYUK HYUK HYUK!

    ———————

    Honestly, you’re so noob at Christian theology! You come with the most usual (and most shallow) polemic attacks, and you expect that someone as combative as myself has NEVER come across them and NEVER learnt how to easily debunk them?

    At least browse some dedicated anti-religion sites. Even the Muslim anti-Christian polemic sites are more in-depth than you.

    God forgive me, but I love atheist baiting!

    But honestly… I don’t know why I bother posting this research. Trolls never bother to read the refutations, they don’t want to learn, they just want to remain in the dream world where they are correct and go pick more fights.

    Despite our head-butting, I like Skinner much better in terms of debating (yes, that is an actual compliment to Skinner). You’re fun, but way too noob.

  66. NAND Gate Fetishist Says:

    Ad-hominem ad-hominem ad-hominem. My turn to engage in your own low-brow tactics. You’re childish, and by investing time in apologetics you are ultimately engaged in a waste of time.

    = me is teh winnor lol b00b

    Also, I will never have to spend my life being devoted to the subjugation of my cognitive dissonance. Yes, it is true, some people will never leave the fold. Instead of debating those people, I simply move on and find others who are smart enough to leave. When it truly comes down to it, I’d much prefer to engage in the study of programming languages or physics than the buy-bull. But keep trying to hurt people dood, you make christinsanity look so good. I don’t expect much of retards, and I don’t expect much of morons – so I don’t expect much of you.

    PS – Gerog Bush is no better or worse than any other politician. I don’t know why you assume I hate him. But then, I can’t fathom what could possibly make you so immature.

  67. NAND Gate Fetishist Says:

    Also, where did I state that I am an Atheist? I am a non-practicing Pagan, d00d. Yet another sign (of your jumping to conclusions and anti-atheist bigotry/fervor).

  68. Scott Thong Says:

    You’re childish, and by investing time in apologetics you are ultimately engaged in a waste of time.

    And you did not acknowledge or adress a single one of my rebuttals of your headlong attacks on the Bible’s veracity.

    If you mean that I am wasting my time by trying to convince you that your attacks are off-kilter, then you are correct.

    But apologetics is a good investment of time if it convinces me and others than Christianity is not a philosophy based on avoiding truthful criticism, but on adressing it.

    I believe I have done a good job here. All your puny attacks have bounced off my wicker shield. WICKER I SAY!!!!!

    ——————

    When it truly comes down to it, I’d much prefer to engage in the study of programming languages or physics than the buy-bull

    And yet, you did not know that ‘multiverse’ is not a make-believe invention of Marvel Comics. So what are you doing here rather than ‘debating’ (HA HA HA) on some global waming blogs?

    ——————

    Instead of debating those people, I simply move on and find others who are smart enough to leave.

    I’m not going to leave my own blog, man.

    ————————-

    Ad-hominem ad-hominem ad-hominem. My turn to engage in your own low-brow tactics.

    But keep trying to hurt people dood, you make christinsanity look so good. I don’t expect much of retards, and I don’t expect much of morons – so I don’t expect much of you.

    First you started the ad hominems:

    heavily patriarchal, mysoginistic, antisemiticm antiarabist religion
    you REALLY need a better edyoocashun.
    (Why the intentionaly mocking misspelling?)
    Your understanding of philosophy is so rudimentary I could have debated it as an elementary school-child (and I was no wunderkind)
    be careful of those who seek to destroy/vanquish evil – they invariably become it.

    Then you escalate it. And you have the nerve to quote logical fallacies at me? What have I done to show I am a retard or a moron that is not based on you subjective, relative opinion?

    Whereas the proof of your noobness is evident from the ease with which I refuted your shallow, ‘Popular Polemics’ accusations against the Bible.

    Because seriously, in non-ad hominem terms… Your knowledge of Christian scripture, intepretation and apllication is only on the level of a beginner. Worse, a beginner with a bone to pick.

    —————-

    Also, where did I state that I am an Atheist? I am a non-practicing Pagan, d00d.

    Also, I will never have to spend my life being devoted to the subjugation of my cognitive dissonance.

    Yet another sign (of your jumping to conclusions and anti-atheist bigotry/fervor).

    Oh sory, mai bad!

    But if you are not atheist, then what are you doing on this blog post? No anti-pagan sites to troll?

    And if you aren’t atheist, aren’t you subject to cognitive dissonance as atheists contend all religious believers are? Or are you agnostic?

    And if criticizing atheism makes me a fevent bigot, what does that make you when you come with your (totally disproved) attacks on Christianity and the Bible?

  69. NAND Gate Fetishist Says:

    You’re so out of touch man.

    “All your puny attacks have bounced off my wicker shield. WICKER I SAY!!!!!”

    That’s great, but I would say the shield is made up of arrogance, ignorance, self-righteousness, and a lack of experience with the real world. Mr. High-and-mighty High-school-student.

    What I said was not that the multi-verse hypothesis was from marvel comics and marvel comics alone, what I said was that your reference to the “theory” in light of comic books was stupid. It also doesn’t fit within a theological framework.

    “Because seriously, in non-ad hominem terms… Your knowledge of Christian scripture, intepretation and apllication is only on the level of a beginner. Worse, a beginner with a bone to pick.” – that’s actually a compliment. Many thanks.

    The simple fact is son, you are unable to distinguish fact from opinion. It is your burden to be an immature ass for the rest of your life. Not mine.

  70. Scott Thong Says:

    What I said was not that the multi-verse hypothesis was from marvel comics and marvel comics alone, what I said was that your reference to the “theory” in light of comic books was stupid. It also doesn’t fit within a theological framework.

    Says the person who doesn’t know theology. Can you point out to me any specific point at which my Multiple Alternate Futures description fails to fit within Christian theology? If not, your accusation is a baseless dud.

    Have you ever heard of the term illustration, parable or allegory? The whole point of parables is to connect to the audience in a way that they understand. Obviously, you did not get connected to – but that doesn’t mean other people won’t too.

    ———————–

    “Because seriously, in non-ad hominem terms… Your knowledge of Christian scripture, intepretation and apllication is only on the level of a beginner. Worse, a beginner with a bone to pick.” – that’s actually a compliment. Many thanks.

    You are welcome.

    ———————–

    The simple fact is son, you are unable to distinguish fact from opinion. It is your burden to be an immature ass for the rest of your life. Not mine.

    If I don’t call you mate, you don’t call me son. ‘Father’ would be more appropriate, as I know more theology and Christian Scripture than you, Or call me ‘Uncle’ in reference to how I repeatedly answer your attacks, yet you avoid adressing mine.

    I contend that you are the one unable to discern fact from opinion. Note that the following points which I have previously brought up fit the definition of FACT:

    Multiverses is an actual physics theory.
    The Hebrew word translated as ‘bird’ is more accurately translated ‘winged creature.’
    The value of pi described in the Bible is closer to 3.14 than a round 3, when taking into account the width of the rim which is ‘one handbreadth’.
    Both Jesus and the Hebrew presence in Egypt are attested to by historical sources (Jesus better than the Hebrews in Egypt).
    Your various quotes of allegedly offensive Bible verses are out of context, misinterpreted or do not even exist.
    You do not quote actually existing Scripture, only allude to the existence of certain vague verses.
    Being convicted of plotting a terror attack receives non-equal punishment to actually carrying out a successful terror attack.

    Are these absolute facts, or relative opinions? If they are merely opinions and not facts, then tell me why they are so. Or is it your opinion that these facts are merely opinions?

    Do you actually answer any of my questions, ever? I note that you have not refuted, or even attempted to refute, any of my points on Scripture, evidence or contemporary events.

    I contend that you are the immature donkey here… You come in with ineffective guns blazing away at my beliefs, ad hominem me then accuse me of starting it, and call me arogant while putting on – surprise! – an air of arogance.

    Look at it objectively – I have my own opinions, and I defend them. You also have you opinions, some of them on Scripture and my ideas, and I defend Scipture and myself as best I can.

    Why does this make me an immature a$$? Explain how, and how the criteria you use to judge me does not condemn yourself at the same time.

    (You can take the “Well I’m an a$$ but so are you” route, but I’ll contend back.)

  71. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Well, this baby exploded out of control. Anyway to adress Scott.

    You condone genocide… again. Remember moral absolutism? I doesn’t matter when, where or who does something, it is wrong. You continuosly contradict yourself here. Either it is wrong for people to do sopmething, no matter what God commands or god determines what is good and evil- which leads to baby killing. The problem with saying they sinned is the fact that they had no idea that they sinned. It is a bit like the feds bursting into your house and shotting you for pirating music. They had no reason to believe they were sinning, nor any warning. By your own standards the act was immoral. Except of course you have no standards.

    You say there is an immutable law of God agaist abortion. Got bad news for you- abortion was both legal and okay until the 1830s. SO your absolute stance only convers 140 years compared to the 600 Protestants had to differentiate from the church. The reason abortion was banned wasn’t moral issues- it was the classic men are bastards- doctors claimed only they had the right to decide if a women can get an abortion. Oh, women weren’t allowed to become doctors either. You get the picture.

    Since you refer to me as a leftist and you accuse leftists as being wimpy on Islam, I felt the need to defend my sanity credidentials.

    When you say contradictions can be “explained away” I have bad news for you- Islam does the exact same thing. The fact that Islam makes as much sense as Christianity is shown by the fact people convert back and forth (not so much in the muslim world- they kill apostates). Although Christians are unlikely to smuggle a nuke into DC (not impossible though- read the handmaiden’s diary) Christians are more likely to turn the US into a police state and trigger WW3. Which could concievable end the human race. So they are both worth opposing.

    Atheism by definiton is in conflict with all religions. There isn’t some favored place for Christians and atheists to team up together.

  72. Scott Thong Says:

    You condone genocide… again

    You accuse me of this… again.

    I suggest you be more specific, and quote what I said that you construe as supporting this-or-that-cide. Otherwise, I will just assume you are mistaken or trolling.

    ——————————–

    You continuosly contradict yourself here. Either it is wrong for people to do sopmething, no matter what God commands or god determines what is good and evil- which leads to baby killing.

    There is no contradiction. As I have said before, whatever God says, goes.

    If we think that what God decides is moral or immoral is off kilter, who are we finite, few decades of life experience mortals to argue and say that WE know better?

    And please cite me even ONE case of babies being killed in the name of the Christian God in the last 100 years.

    ——————————–

    The problem with saying they sinned is the fact that they had no idea that they sinned. It is a bit like the feds bursting into your house and shotting you for pirating music. They had no reason to believe they were sinning, nor any warning.

    If you’re referring to Sodom, Gomorrah, Amalek and Canaan – it wasn’t as innocious as Kazaaing. They were rapists, incestuous, animals rapists, child murderers (the real ones), pillagers, enslavers and genocidal.

    Thus your comparison is inaccurate. A better comparison would be, the feds burst into the house and shoot The Baytown Cannibal as he attempts to rape, cook and eat a young girl.

    Can you argue that the feds were wrong to shoot first, even if the maniac were certifiably insane and genuinely believed he was doing the girl a favour?

    And aren’t you the one who suggests that all people have an innate sense of some absolute morality that is ingrained into the very fabric of reality itself?

    ——————————–

    By your own standards the act was immoral. Except of course you have no standards.

    My standard is that God makes the rules. I would think you’d have gotten that by now.

    ———————————-

    You say there is an immutable law of God agaist abortion. Got bad news for you- abortion was both legal and okay until the 1830s. SO your absolute stance only convers 140 years compared to the 600 Protestants had to differentiate from the church.

    Again I reiterate… What God says stands, no matter what different things Christians have done or supported.

    Christians have supported many shameful things in the past… Racism, misoginy, religious persecution… But that’s their fault, not God’s fickleness.

    ———————————–

    When you say contradictions can be “explained away” I have bad news for you- Islam does the exact same thing. The fact that Islam makes as much sense as Christianity is shown by the fact people convert back and forth (not so much in the muslim world- they kill apostates).

    Have you actually read the Koran and Hadith? I know you’ve at least scanned through websites written by people who scanned through books that attack the Bible.

    Seriously, some ‘explanations’ are totally unsatisfactory! Think for yourself, how does one explain away:

    The first people being 80 feet tall?

    The Earth being supported by an angel who stands on a giant tortoise?

    A baby looking like whichever parent has ORGASM first?

    All creation being made (paradoxically) in both 6 days only and 8 days only?

    And no, it’s not the Bible saying those things!

    So do go educate yourself on that matter. True, you’ll probably still think the Bible is full of hogwash… But IMHO, stuff like ‘the value of pi to sixteen decimals’ has nothing on the REAL pros of not-making-sense.

    And as I said earlier, disproving the claims of one religion does not make Christianity disproven.

    ————————————

    Although Christians are unlikely to smuggle a nuke into DC (not impossible though- read the handmaiden’s diary) Christians are more likely to turn the US into a police state and trigger WW3. Which could concievable end the human race. So they are both worth opposing.

    ‘Scuse me, but last I heard…

    Hillary Clinton (liberal Democrat) was the one who said “We’re going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good.” Whether we like it or not.

    John Edwards (liberal Democrat) was the one who promised to force people to take mandatory health checkups.

    The Democrats were the ones who wanted to pass laws forcing everyone to join universal healthcare, no matter their opinion.

    Al Gore (liberal Democrat) and like-minded greenies were the ones calling for worldwide taxation and punishment for carbon emissions and that parents be fined for having children.

    Liberal Democrats were the ones calling for personal firearms to be banned – and when the police state comes, how will an unwilling civilian say ‘no’?

    Liberal Democrats are the ones who are proposing that overweight people be banend from eating at restaurants.

    Liberal Democrats are the ones who are in favour of more and more government intervention and control… The police state that their role model, Soviet Socialist Utopia, refined to an art.

    Do you deny that Conservatives want LESS government meddling?

    ————————————-

    Atheism by definiton is in conflict with all religions. There isn’t some favored place for Christians and atheists to team up together.

    True, atheism may be in conflict with all the different religions. But that doesn’t mean that the different religions get along all palsy either.

    And disproving the claims of one religion doesn’t do natch to disprove any of the others. Hence, I can say that a certain religion has logical, historical and scientific flaws yet maintain that Christianity doesn’t.

    And may I add… Teaming up doesn’t mean automatic friendship.

    The British and the Russians were ideologically opposed. Yet they teamed up to fight Nazi Germany, for their own benefit. After that, they went back to antagonism.

    Nowhere in the Bible is forcing nonChristians to convert allowed, condoned or commanded. So if a fundie gun nut forces baptisms on you, he’s being a bad Christian.

    Whereas a certain other religion clearly commands that its members do not befriend Jews or Christians, that nonbelievers must be atatcked and slain until they submit, and especially that all pagans and atheists must be killed – no mercy.

    Which is the more serious threat to American freedom? Just open up a newspaper. You won’t be reading, “Christian fundies bomb market!” or “Protestants behead journalist on Youtube!”.

    You do know these things, don’t you? Do you believe that they will just sit back and take a break while the ACLU systematically removes all traces of Christianity from the country, just because they hate the Crusaders too?

    Or perhaps you are here because it’s easier to argue with someone who WON’T go to your house and stab you with a box cutter for being an infidel?

  73. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Genocide= exterminating a group of people based on ethnicity. Saying God used the Israelis to kill and entire tribe because they sinned against him would count as genocide.

    Baby killing… how about Nigeria? Cause they are killing kids for witchcraft. Fortunately the Christians helped prevent it from spiralling out of control by targeting the kids. When was this? Ceck the Guardian article about it- it was in this decade (or possible now).

    For the sinned part you have the writings of the people who killed them. Yep, they are definately unbiased. Along with the fact you said all mankind has sinned- means it doesn’t matter what their actions were- it would be okay to kill them.

    God makes the rules is obedience. Standards don’t rely on an authority figure.

    If Christian’s were wrong in the past how do you know you are correct now. I know using things called reason, evidence and empathy. You seem to parasite of societies morality, going as nutty as you can without being locked up.

    No the bible has equally nutty things (god doesn’t make the universe immediately for one- heck Mardok does it faster). Not to mention they have explanations (It’s a miracle being my favorite). Also I doubt those are from the Koran- if you really were citing nuttiness you wouldn’t have been able to miss Jennies. Yeah, they are in there- and Muslims still believe in them. There is a whole body of writing about them.

    Taking things away for the common good is the purpose of the government. Taxes, military spending. If you don’t like it, don’t vote for them. Don’t assume they are evil.

    Universal healthcare means it covers everyone. Whats next? The evils of universal taxation?

    If carbon is considered a pollutant, than it should be regulated- just like mercury and lead. Otherwise the US could come to resemble a forge world, which sucks for those of us without gas masks.

    At this point in the game the military has tanks and apaches. if the gov cracks down do you think a wimpy pistol will stop them? You need to argue it reduces crime (I think people are still arguing if that is true or not- probably true though)

    The Banning fat people from eating is Missouri- its a red state so it was probably a republican law.

    Actually since most religions have similar reasons to believe in them, disproving one does hit all the others.

    I’m not going to team up with the Christians! I’ll go with the Sikhs- they make great air marshals.

    ACLU isn’t removing all traces of Christianity in this country- they are removing all endorsement by the gov- as mandated in the first amendment. Say what you want it is supposed to be the law of the land.

    You haven’t read the God delusion, have you? He talks about an incident in Italy where the took away a kid because he was baptised at birth. I know, not “True Scotsman”.

    Ever heard of the Christians who shot abortion doctors? Once you justify one murder…

    Also I believe the origional writing is “Thou shalt not murder”. Unfortunately murder meant unlawful killing. In short- it is wrong to kill people whom it is illegal to kill. Relative morality.

  74. hutchrun Says:

    The proposal is on the loony San Fran Super Tuesday ballot today. No surprise, as the unofficial motto of Frisco is no longer, “Home of Rice-a-Roni.” Now, it’s: If it ain’t broke, “fix” it. Gives new meaning to the movie title, “Escape from Alcatraz,” and not in a good way. Those proposing this idea claim that a global peace center on Alcatraz would draw even more tourists than the former prison. Um, maybe a mental institution is more appropriate for the island . . . to house these delusionally afflicted.

    A better idea: Make Alcatraz a prison for international peace activists. That combines the best of both ideas. Better yet, make it a prison for international peace activists and Gitmo detainees to battle it out for positions as martyrs for Allah. Then, it would make an even more spectacular tourist attraction. And libs would finally get their wish of closing Gitmo.

    http://www.debbieschlussel.com/archives/2008/02/stupid_liberal.html#comments

  75. Tickler Says:

    My regard for ACLU has plunged. Their love for the propagation of Islam, and steadfast downgrading of Christianity is bias in my eyes. Reminds me of ratatouille and these fellers:

    PETA a/k/a PUTAh (People for the Unethical Treatment of Animals and humans) is upset that China doesn’t treat rats nicely.

    http://www.debbieschlussel.com/archives/2008/02/quote_of_the_da_5.html#comments

  76. Tickler Says:

    In a Nation gone mad, whales/dolphins are more important than Maritime Security:

    The 36-page order issued late Monday means the Navy will have to follow Cooper’s previous injunction forbidding the use of powerful submarine-detecting sonar in areas where whales are abundant, such as within 12 nautical miles of the coast and in the waters between Santa Catalina and San Clemente islands.

    That January order also will require the Navy to shut down sonar when whales or other marine mammals are spotted within 2,200 yards of vessels or under certain sea conditions that allow the powerful sonic blasts to travel farther than usual. This type of sonar has been linked to panicked behavior and mass deaths of whales in the Bahamas, the Canary Islands and elsewhere, although never off Southern California.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-sonar5feb05,1,5010590.story?ctrack=1&cset=true

  77. Scott Thong Says:

    Genocide= exterminating a group of people based on ethnicity. Saying God used the Israelis to kill and entire tribe because they sinned against him would count as genocide.

    Can’t disagree if you define it that way… But that’s God, not me. And He’s done ‘speciecide’ and ‘lifecide’ by wiping out most of the life on Earth He created with the great flood.

    ——————-

    Baby killing… how about Nigeria? Cause they are killing kids for witchcraft. Fortunately the Christians helped prevent it from spiralling out of control by targeting the kids.

    Simple query: Were these people obeying God’s absolute moral law, or their own hugely flawed misinterpretation of it?

    They are being as Christian as a KKK racist ignoring Paul’s ‘Neither Greek nor Jew’, or Hitler combining it with pagan mysticism.

    ————————–

    For the sinned part you have the writings of the people who killed them. Yep, they are definately unbiased. Along with the fact you said all mankind has sinned- means it doesn’t matter what their actions were- it would be okay to kill them.

    Wait, don’t you believe that all the Bible is made up anyway?

    You obviously don’t know anything about the high standards the Bible’s writers were held up to – lie and you get shown up, kicked out, stoned, or struck with horrendous plagues by God.

    And you are spot on on everybody sinning and deserving to die. The fact that NOT all of us are being smited by God is a mercy, a gift and a favour – those whose lives the Giver of Life takes away have no basis for complaint. Neither will I if God drops a meteor on me.

    ————————–

    God makes the rules is obedience. Standards don’t rely on an authority figure.

    Finally! Do you get what I mean by ABSOLUTE authority now?????????

    —————————

    If Christian’s were wrong in the past how do you know you are correct now. I know using things called reason, evidence and empathy. You seem to parasite of societies morality, going as nutty as you can without being locked up.

    Reason? You mean those randomly triggering electrical signals that substitute for a conciousness in soul-denying naturalism?

    Evidence? I don’t recall any having been brought up – just opinion.

    Empathy? So much for the irresponsible mothers who couldn’t be bothered to use a condom, so little for the guiltless baby who is head-bashed, ripped out and left to struggle for life for an hour at 24 weeks old.

    —————–

    No the bible has equally nutty things (god doesn’t make the universe immediately for one- heck Mardok does it faster). Not to mention they have explanations (It’s a miracle being my favorite)

    I’ll put it simply: Bring on any criticism of the Bible you stole from some site. I can refute your argument as flawed.

    Let’s start with miracles: You obviously discount them from the start. Is that objectivism? Deciding what your result will be before looking at the evidence?

    And your bringing up the account of Creation… How is that contradicting itself or modern science? Particularly if you had to debate a Christian who interprets each day as a long, unstated period of time.

    As compared to easy-to-see contradictions as in the next response…

    —————————–

    Also I doubt those are from the Koran- if you really were citing nuttiness you wouldn’t have been able to miss Jennies

    Koran and Hadith. Here’s a few (but I forgot, you don’t read my links):

    6 or 8 days of Creation? – http://www.answering-islam.org/Quran/Contra/i010.html

    Does baby look like whoever orgasmed faster? – http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/bukhari/060.sbt.html#006.060.007

    Scientists prove that Adam was 90 feet tall! – http://stderr.org/pipermail/tariqas/2001-December/001645.html

    Discworld turtle cosmology is wrong – It’s actually a fish! – http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/whale_nun.htm

    ———————-

    Taking things away for the common good is the purpose of the government. Taxes, military spending. If you don’t like it, don’t vote for them. Don’t assume they are evil.

    Apply this to your own assumptions of Conservative Republicans – the same Christians you criticize for their ‘police state’.

    ————————

    Universal healthcare means it covers everyone. Whats next? The evils of universal taxation?

    That is exactly what a police state is all about – the government controlling everything, no matter what the people’s opinions are.

    And the point being, you are smearing Christians as being likely to bring about a police state when your own liberal Democrats are already pushing totalitarianism in Congress!

    ———————–

    If carbon is considered a pollutant, than it should be regulated- just like mercury and lead. Otherwise the US could come to resemble a forge world, which sucks for those of us without gas masks.

    Global warming is a whole another topic, meant for another time and place, but with a similar defeat for anyone uneducated in the REAL facts (not Al Gore’s intentionally misportrayed, cherrypicked data).

    —————————

    Actually since most religions have similar reasons to believe in them, disproving one does hit all the others.

    This shows that you know even LESS about other religions than you do about Christianity. And you still consider yourself capable of maturely criticizing Christian theology and the Bible?

    Plus it only addresses some theological or logical arguments, but not the completely separate historical evidence for the narratives of each particular religion.

    ————————

    I’m not going to team up with the Christians! I’ll go with the Sikhs- they make great air marshals.

    If I were a barking liberal Moonbat, I’d bring a lawsuit for racism on you for that discriminatory and stereotyping remark.

    ————————-

    ACLU isn’t removing all traces of Christianity in this country- they are removing all endorsement by the gov- as mandated in the first amendment. Say what you want it is supposed to be the law of the land.

    Then why is Islam being propogated in public places, even by the government, even using public funds? Led by that champion of hypocirtical bias, the ACLU.

    http://www.blessedcause.org/Antichrist%20ID/ACLU%20attacks%20Constitution.htm – ACLU supports pro-Islam books

    http://my.opera.com/cbjohnso/blog/show.dml/204169 – ACLU supports teaching Islamic theology and copying Islamic rituals in public school. Correlated by Snopes – http://www.snopes.com/religion/islam.asp

    And tons more cases of dressing like Muslims, bowing in Muslim prayer, Muslim foot baths being installed at taxpayer expence, etc at http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/07/24/american-civil-liberties-union-religious-bias/

    The ACLU seems to be fanatically and narrowly focused on targeting Judeo-Christianity, while letting any other belief system run rampant. Any wonder its nickname is the Anti-Christian Liberal Union?

    And what if the law changes to make atheism illegal? “Say what you want it is supposed to be the law of the land”?

    Seriously, do you just particularly dislike Christians, or are you actually that blind not to notice who is really taking over America bit by bit, who will really impose a police state, who will really carry out genocide of all who disagree with them?

    Hint: They don’t debate liberal atheists over legal rights, they behead them.

    ———————-

    You haven’t read the God delusion, have you? He talks about an incident in Italy where the took away a kid because he was baptised at birth. I know, not “True Scotsman”.

    You’ve read history, right? It talks about how Stalin killed millions for being insane enough to choose their own preferred religious beliefs.

    As good an example as your Scotsman one.

    ————————–

    Ever heard of the Christians who shot abortion doctors? Once you justify one murder…

    Ever heard of the abortion doctors who routinely kill babies who could survive outside the womb (called premature babies when they are actually wanted by their mother), if only they weren’t killed kicking and struggling for dear life?

    Once you rationalize all the millions of babies as not-human…

    —————————-

    Also I believe the origional writing is “Thou shalt not murder”. Unfortunately murder meant unlawful killing. In short- it is wrong to kill people whom it is illegal to kill. Relative morality.

    Murder in the Bible means any human killing any human without sanction for God. In short, it is wrong to kill people unless God decides otherwise. God decides what constitutes law, and therefore what is or is not illegal.

    Absolute morality.

  78. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Main point- DO you ever respond to my statements or do you like Ad Honiums that much?

    First off you seem to be completely unclear about absolute morality. Absolute morality is something that applies to everyone at all times and all places. It may encapsule different judgements based on intention and maturity, but it applies to everyone- even God.

    You seem not to grasp that; you confuse obedience with morality. I will say this slowly- You need a standard of morality before you can say god is an authority figure on morality. If you don’t have a standard it is mindless obedience.

    Flawed misinterpretation? How do you know?

    High standards in the Bible- offering your daughters up for rape will get you out of Sodom alive.

    Brain firings aren’t random. If they were you’d be having a seizure. If material objects couldn’t get correct results computers couldn’t work. So we can reason (Computers can’t do other stuff because it is more complicated- “fuzzy” thinking is harder.

    Evidence- See Nigeria witchburnings

    Empathy- reason why to be good. Doesn’t the Catholic Church condemn birth conrol as a sin?

    So you can explain everything as a “non-literal translation” that only you are priviledge to know? How about the ones from the link I had?

    I didn’t say the Koran wasn’t insane- I said you hadn’t read their explainations.

    You are basically saying “they are the same”. Well, they aren’t. As you can see from this post some people get their answers from faith and others from evidence. Evidence consistantly works better. The fact if the matter is we live in a republic, where elected officials are bound by the constitution to not do what they are currently aiming to do.

    Government by definition is involuntary. A police state is when the government surpress all dissent.

    Great you even have your own set of “facts”. Let me guess there is a conspiracy to supress them- right? And if you look at them just right…

    Theology applies to all religions, as does miracles (which is why I reject them as proof), etc. Historical proof is the only difference in arguements and obviously it sucks- why else would I be an atheist?

    The Sikh comment was a joke you idiot. Obviously you didn’t go to a good middle school. To recap- for Sikhs one of the requirements of their faith is to carry a knife on hand at all times.

    The ACLU thing is odd. However I am both not a member and openly antitheist. So it doesn’t apply to me.

    You really haven’t read the book have you? He devotes sometime to your “Stalin is an atheist” responce. I’m not claiming all atheist are good- I’m claiming people don’t commit atrocities in the name of atheism. If you read about Stalin you’ll notice he commited his crimes for communism, the revolution and the Soviet Union. It is a bit like saying people with mustaches are evil because Hitler, Stalin and Hussein had mustaches.

    Once you decide fetuses are not sentient you have abortion. Once you say it is okay to break the law because “my interpretaion is right” you have civil war. Funny part is you don’t say how he is wrong.

    You don’t show how your statement is true or at all related to the intention. Did you even look at the link?

    The basic problem you have is that you have declared god’s laws to be absolute- but only you have the correct interpretation. How do you know your interpretation is correct and others are incorrect? This is not absolute morality- it is relative morality, where everyone is claiming they alone have the perfect standards, and you cna’t critize any one because they all used the same method.

  79. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Opps- looked up your profile, so you didn’t go through the American middle school system. Still, I think you’d know about the neighborhoods religions… or maybe it is because the joke requires a referance to an American legal ruling (Sikhs are allowed to carry knives everywhere). Sorry for the slander. (remember Sam- not everyone is an American) And lest you get miked impression I don’t consider Sikhism any more sane than any other faiths. But they aren’t a problem to those of us not living in the Indian sub continent.

  80. wits0 Says:

    IMO Scott, Noah and the Great Flood could not be taken to be a world wide event. If Noah had to save every pair of land animals and the continents have already separated at that time, how could the American buffalo pair have made it across the ocean and afterwards return back to their natural habitats? I can imagine that it was an event within a local continent.

  81. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Actually there is atheory about that- A major flood occuring in the Black Sea region. Or it could be completely made up- other cultures in Mesopotamia also had similar mythology. Regardless I don’t try to hit Christians on biblical contradictions- that is the job for ex-christians.

  82. wits0 Says:

    Pointing out what is plausible and what’s not quite in ANY scriptures, Christian or otherwise, is not tantamount to hitting out at them.

    Somethings simply can’t be taken literally and other things, so evidently expected are never stipulated clearly by any of them. Namely that the Earth is spheroid is never stated. But at least only one claims implicitly that the Earth is flat!

    Surely Mount Meru of the Buddhist is an abstract thing and not a literal one in Earth.

    No, it’s not necessary to be an ex, to delineate what’s symbolic from what’s physically real.

  83. Samuel Skinner Says:

    You can’t take what we consider metaphorical and real from what we know now- you have to do it from what the person who wrote it thought. Other wise you get the relativism Scott attacks in this post.

    For example, Solomon and the baby is almost certainly a parable (it has all the traits of a good story- and all the subtle hints of a vieled warning to his enemies- mess with me and I will cut the country in half). On the other hand the creation story was probably meant literally, along with the other explanatory stuff.

    The only reason I brought up the possible origions of the flood story is it distinguishes between myth and legend. Myths are made up- legends have a grain (or more) of truth in them.

  84. hutchrun Says:

    “On the other hand the creation story was probably meant literally..” samuel Skinner.

    I think you`ll find this interesting:

    At face value, it seems almost as if the Almighty reached into His celestial grab-bag of consequences and randomly doled out lightning-bolts: “Let’s see, Adam? You’re the one who works the fields around here — OK, no more easy street for you. From now on, you’ll have to work to get harvest out of the land. Eve? Right. You’re the one who bears children — let’s make that a little tougher. And the snake? He’ll crawl on his belly and eat dust, and there will be eternal hatred between his progeny and those of Eve. While we’re at it, death to everybody; nobody gets to live forever anymore. And one last thing: Exile. Everybody out of the pool.”

    http://www.aish.com/literacy/exploring/The_I_of_the_Beholder_Serpents_of_Desire3_Part_9.asp

  85. wits0 Says:

    A concept is an abstraction derived from perceptions. It is a certain specific feature of a perception that can be carved out as a separate and distinct entity; a definable and distinctive feature that our mind can identify.

    Perception improves as (scientific)knowledge grows and thge concept of things must change(hopefully for the better). Even what started as a parable should become more cogent as consciousness improves. The growth of the consciousness of Man and his mental evolution is inexorable. Everything changes and understanding is not left forever in a comfortable coccoon because intellectual inertia is seemingly absolutely desirable for some.

    There is little hope of selling the Adam and Eve thing literally today except to children. King Solomon can’t be “the wisest of man” because the partisan hype said so. He was a randy and clever king, whose randiness eventually helped caused the decline of his kingdom.

    Moses’ Elohim and almost all associate miracles can often be explained away in the light of modern science knowledge. A burning bush was easily a holographic projection. For the East wind to blow all night just to part the Red Sea is an inconceivable for the real God to employ in order to part it. And then that strange desire of Moses to want to see the ‘Glory of God’ suggests that his actual understanding of what’s God is wanting as a Conception. I do not, however, dispute that Jesus miracle of turning water to wine – this was not a scientific substitution but a derivation of supernormal mind power that is known to other East Asian (esoteric ) teachings and traditions.

  86. Scott Thong Says:

    Just some brief responses, because I’ve learned that responding point by point is a waste of time – Skinner just picks out the parts he wants to remark on, ignores the rest and brings up new points.

    ——————–

    1) High standards in the Bible- offering your daughters up for rape will get you out of Sodom alive.

    Just because the Bible records something, doesn’t mean that it condones that action. Lot’s cowardly actions were not approved anywhere in the Bible. Besides, what got them out of Sodom unharmed was the angels blinding the attempting rapists.

    Using this same, terribly flawed logic, one could also claim that the Bible condones sinning, blasphemy, going to hell, siding with the devil, betraying your closest friends, adultery followed by killing the husband and rejecting Jesus… Simply by ignoring the fact that all the above actions are CLEARLY CONDEMNED by the same Bible.

    And of course, everyone knows that the Bible proclaims atheism because Psalm 14 says that “There is no God.”

    Samuel Skinner is either utterly unfamiliar with the most basic of Bible narratives (see his remark that Adam and Eve didn’t die), or intentionally uses misrepresentions to make the Biblical narrative seem depraved. Which is it? (Prediction: No response unless I goad him in this very manner)

    And what comparison does he have for atheism? None whatsoever – as atheism has no guidelines that can be claimed to be inspired by an absolute source.

    Sincere suggestion: At least read the book that you want to criticize. Don’t rely solely on second-hand polemic message boards.

    ————————

    2) On Noah’s Flood remarks…

    I’ve discussed the appearance of flood myths in various cultures before. Basically, the fact that every culture has its own version of a Great Flood actually attests to such an event actually happening, rather than such an event never having happened.

    And comparing all the different flood mythologies, the Bible’s is the most practical and realistic, which attests to its being closest to the historical happening.

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/12/28/living-life-like-an-atheist-or-a-christian-wanna-bet/#comment-22341

    ———————-

    3) First off you seem to be completely unclear about absolute morality. Absolute morality is something that applies to everyone at all times and all places. It may encapsule different judgements based on intention and maturity, but it applies to everyone- even God.

    Isn’t that what I have been repeatedly saying? That absolute morality means no matter where or when, there is a set of absolute morals that applies to everyone – regardless of cultural background?

    Again I reiterate MY definition of absolute morality: God has an unchangeable, undebatable, unvoteable set of moral codes. He has revealed them in the Bible. We try to interpret them as best as we can. Over time, our understanding and interpretation changes – but God’s absolute standard DOES NOT CHANGE, no matter how stupid we may be.

    Again I compare: Civilizations over time have had a different concept of matter. The Greeks thought it was comprised of four elements, later scientists proposed atoms, today it is quarks and gluons. But opinion does NOT change the ABSOLUTE FACT of matter – no matter what the current definition of it.

    And to be clear, I never claim my specific interpretation to be correct over all others – just that I am personally convinced that it is correct, based on evidence.

    And again, whatever I may believe DOES NOT CHANGE what God has actually set, no matter how idiotic my conviction turns out to be.

    —————–

    4) I can’t argue with you effectively because there is no substance behind your words. I can state what I believe and why- by contrast you can only parrot like a communist or libertarian.

    Back up your statement, the way you never do and I often do. Many of my retorts I just thought up on the spot after reading your comments.

    ————————–

    5) On that Sikh ‘joke’… It’s strange that Samuel claims to live in America, yet has no clue as to how prevalent litigation for racially-discriminatory remarks is in America.

    —————————-

    6) He devotes sometime to your “Stalin is an atheist” responce. I’m not claiming all atheist are good- I’m claiming people don’t commit atrocities in the name of atheism. If you read about Stalin you’ll notice he commited his crimes for communism, the revolution and the Soviet Union. It is a bit like saying people with mustaches are evil because Hitler, Stalin and Hussein had mustaches.

    Yes, but what is there in a mustache that influences people not to commit evil? As opposed to, say, their moral upbringing and inspiration?

    Belief in a traditional religion has a deity-given moral code. Atheism has whatever you think = right.

    Or put it another way – Where did Stalin get his astounding moral code that let him sleep peacefully every night after sending another thousand to their executions? ‘Cos it certainly wasn’t religion’s ‘Thou Shalt Not Commit Murder’.

    People don’t commit atrocities in the name of atheism as far as we know and as far as abortion doesn’t count as murdering babies in their mothers’ wombs.. But it has played the silent partner in rationalizing plenty of deaths that non-existant gods do not forbid causing.

  87. Samuel Skinner Says:

    1 Since the bible is supposed to be a moral guide book (at least by some people) and since god considers Lot a good man (he gets him out of the city) I think we can argue that action is condoned and depraved.

    2 The part about mythology and legends was me getting sidetracked. Other Mesopotamian cultures have flood stories- I don’t believe other regions also have similar tales. I was just wondering if the story was based on an event or was written as an explanation- legends and mythology respectively.

    3 Absolute morality means you don’t get to do your own personal definitions. It applies to everyone remember? Also, if we have no idea what the code is it is useless trying to force people to fit your code. How do you know your interpretation of the bible is more accurate than mine?

    4Well, in your post you slander me claiming I ignore your strong arguements. Although I dropped out of the biblical arguing because I don’t have backgroung in it (and you were rationalizing like crazy). As for lack of substance- your absolute morality. You fragrantly admitted that you are using your interpretation- basically you have a position indestinuishable from relativists. The only difference is you believe there is an absolute standard “out there”. You still don’t seem to grasp the concept of absolute morality.

    5 Sikh’s are a religious group, not a race. Plus positive remarks aren’t considered discriminatory, just sterotypical.

    6 Pro choicers are mostly theists (atheists are 6% of the population here). Atheism doesn’t come with a moral code. So it is just like the mustache.
    Stalin got it from communism you blockhead. He was a bloody commie. Commie, commie, commie! Have you gotten it yet.
    People have commited atrocities in the name of a diety given moral code. Repeatedly. Iran just sentanced two women to death for adultry. But remeber- it’s their “interpretation”.

  88. Scott Thong Says:

    1 Since the bible is supposed to be a moral guide book (at least by some people) and since god considers Lot a good man (he gets him out of the city) I think we can argue that action is condoned and depraved.

    Biblically illiterate as usual. Using your contorted logic…

    God saved Jonah from the great fish after he disobeyed and ran away, leaving Nineveh to its doom… So the Bible condones diobeying God and selfish racism.

    God made David the ancestor of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, after David committed adultery with Bathsheeba and his whole family was thrown into chaos by his sons fighting for the throne… So the Bible gives a thumbs up to extramarital affairs and family feuds.

    God offers salvation to all sinful, depraved, evil humans through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ… So God likes murder, rape, blasphemy, stealing, atheism, lying etc etc etc

    Do you see the illogicity of your selective interpretation here, where you ignore the entire lives of Biblical characters and focus on on the flaws? So God showing mercy to a sinful man must means God likes sin. What person DIDN’T commit sin in the Bible?

    ——————–

    2 The part about mythology and legends was me getting sidetracked. Other Mesopotamian cultures have flood stories- I don’t believe other regions also have similar tales.

    I wasn’t solely adressing you about that, but on other flood narratives in non-Middle Eastern cultures:

    China, India, Andaman Islands, Indonesia, Australia, Greece, Germany, Ireland, Finland, Aztec, Chibca, Inca, Maya, Hopi, Caddo, Menominee, Polynesia.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deluge_%28mythology%29

    ————————–

    Absolute morality means you don’t get to do your own personal definitions. It applies to everyone remember? Also, if we have no idea what the code is it is useless trying to force people to fit your code. How do you know your interpretation of the bible is more accurate than mine?

    Let me put it this way: I believe that abortion is selfish and wrong in God’s eyes. Jojo does not believe so and has tons of them. One day we both die, and it turns out that God is real and considers abortion a sin. It doesn’t matter what our opinions were – God frowns on abortion, period (in this scenario at least).

    Thus absolute morality applies to everyone, no matter what they or their culture may say… Or how long it takes for judgement to catch up to them.

    And I know my interpretation of the Bible is more accurate than yours because your Bible knowledge isn’t much to begin with.

    As for how I know my interpretation of the Bible is more accurate than other people who have actually held a Bible in their hands and turned the pages… That’s where Bible studies, exegesis, hermeneutics, Hebrew and Aramaic and Greek language studies, history and archaeaology come into play.

    ————————-

    4 Although I dropped out of the biblical arguing because I don’t have backgroung in it (and you were rationalizing like crazy).

    So why are you still attempting to criticize the Bible like a pufferfish attempting to flop across the Sahara?

    You fragrantly admitted that you are using your interpretation- basically you have a position indestinuishable from relativists. The only difference is you believe there is an absolute standard “out there”. You still don’t seem to grasp the concept of absolute morality.

    Don’t you also believe that there is an absolute standard out there? Where IS your absolute concept to be found, anyway? It ain’t some religious book, that we know.

    I believe that there is an absolute standard out there, so how do I not grasp the concept of absolute morality?

    ————————-

    5 Sikh’s are a religious group, not a race. Plus positive remarks aren’t considered discriminatory, just sterotypical.

    Ever tried to point out flaws in the religion of Islam and Sharia law in public? Or Hindus? I advise you not to act yourself in real life public. Trust me on this.

    ————————-

    6

    Pro choicers are mostly theists

    And so are pro lifers, and murderers and policemen, and drop outs and teachers, by the simple fact that there are so few non-Communist bloc atheists around. Your point?

    (And btw… Why are the majority of atheists Communists and vice versa? They are not necessarily the same thing, but what connection makes it easier to adopt Communism if one is an atheist, or to demand atheism at gunpoint if one is a Communist?)

    Stalin got it from communism you blockhead. He was a bloody commie. Commie, commie, commie! Have you gotten it yet.

    And if he had believed the Bible, he likely wouldn’t have been so carefree as he broke the Sixth Commandment every hour.

    People have commited atrocities in the name of a diety given moral code. Repeatedly. Iran just sentanced two women to death for adultry. But remeber- it’s their “interpretation”.

    I believe we were talking about Christianity here, as I do not defend the actions of other religions. Why not bring up child sacrifice to Molech or the devil while you’re at it?

  89. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Well, that is a bit like saying “yes he was an evil bastard, but he did a good deed! That counts right?”
    Jonah was punished by God= doesn’t condone
    It isn’t showing mercy that is the problem- it is saying that these people are good. They aren’t.

    Huh- guess I was wrong about the prevalece of the flood legend. However I do believe that only in Mesopotamia does it involve an ark, one family and packing it full of animals.

    This.. hurts. You are claiming your version of morality is closer to gods rules. There a a couple problems.
    1 Still no absolute morality and still command morality.
    2 Uh… the bad stuff? Stoning and the like? Or do you have rationalizations for that. If so, why isn’t homosexuality rationalizable? Or murder?

    I stopped criticing specific inaccuricies.
    What the heck is “absolute standard out there mean”? The universe doesn’t care, comets can’t commit crimes and toilets aren’t staring at you.
    Just because you claim you are an absolute moralist doesn’t mean you are. Absolute morality is
    Rules that apply to everyone, at any time or culture. Your position on the old testament rules contradicts this.

    I live in the US, which unlike Indonesia isn’t an oppresive country. You can speak out against those things (and people do)- it is the beauty of free speech. I fell sorry that you don’t have that benefit.

    The reason communists were atheist is the same reason Christian Democrats are Christian. It is part of the philosophy- rejection of the supernatural on the grounds it is a tool of the capitalist classes. It is important to note that only the party was atheistic- the population may or may not be religious (see China for an example).

    So theists don’t kill? But you just said theists comprise the majority of the population and thus murderers and the like… or were you refering to the odds? Bad news for you- in the US at least atheists are about 6% of the population… and .1% of the prison population. It is mostly due to being better people than theists. Kidding- a large part is due to the fact they are better educated and more intelligent.

    Because the same way you justify your religion is the way they justify theirs.

  90. Scott Thong Says:

    Well, that is a bit like saying “yes he was an evil bastard, but he did a good deed! That counts right?”

    Well, you are saying, “No matter what good qualities he has, he did one thing wrong in a very pressuring, very panicking situation so that makes him totally evil and depraved.”

    Jonah was punished by God= doesn’t condone
    It isn’t showing mercy that is the problem- it is saying that these people are good. They aren’t.

    And who said he was good? Even after giving in and going to preach in Nineveh, Jonah was angry and sulking that God chose to give Israel’s enemies a second chance.

    ——————-

    Absolute morality is
    Rules that apply to everyone, at any time or culture.

    Then how does this go: The absolute moral law is to love God and to love your fellow man. This applies to all humans, and breaking this law is punishable by eternal damnation by God. Any subtleties are secondary to this precept.

    Any objections on the grounds of internal logical consistency there?

    ————————-

    I live in the US, which unlike Indonesia isn’t an oppresive country. You can speak out against those things (and people do)- it is the beauty of free speech. I fell sorry that you don’t have that benefit.

    …Malaysia, you isolationist! It says so at the very top of About Me!!!

    I agree that the US is less oppressive than most Third World nations, including Malaysia. However, certain parties such as the ACLU, Scientology and Religion of Perpetual Outrage groups are using massive litigation to stifle criticism of their ways.

    ———————-

    So theists don’t kill? But you just said theists comprise the majority of the population and thus murderers and the like… or were you refering to the odds?

    I was referring to the fact that claiming the majority of pro-choicers are religious doesn’t mean that religion generally condones abortion. You have to look at the overall percentage of religious believers these pro-choicers comprise.

    Bad news for you- in the US at least atheists are about 6% of the population… and .1% of the prison population.

    Just because someone CLAIMS to be religious, it doesn’t mean that he or she is.

    You are probably not familiar with the concept of nominal Christians, but they are basically people who claim to be Christian, yet have never read the Bible, do not attend church except for Christmas and maybe Easter, have no idea what Christian doctrines are all about, and follow their own personal version of what Christianity means anyhow.

    If John McCain is a RINO – Republican In Name Only – then such Christians are CINOs. McCain supports amnesty for illegal immigrants, more taxes, and being gentle to terrorists even as he runs on the Republican ticket. Nominal Christians have no idea what salvation actually requires, have not read a single Bible chapter, and basically pick and choose the parts they like (which may not even really exist in Christianity) while chucking the rest.

    These people will tick ‘Christian’ on a poll sheet, but that does not make them real Christians representative of the faith – any more than me ticking the box marked ‘No Religion’ on my way to church makes me a real atheist.

    I respect the right of any person to choose their own beliefs, even if it is belief in magical pink unicorns. I may not agree with the logic or factual basis of those beliefs, and maintain the correctness of my own beliefs.

    But if my own beliefs are convincingly proven wrong to me, I will change my viewpoint accordingly.

    ———————-

    A challenge to you: We’ve mostly been attacking the bad deeds of atheism or religion so far. Let’s try the positive side of things.

    Name three good things that have been achieved by atheism throughout human history.

    I’ll name three for Christianity first: Turning the bloodthirsty Viking marauders into Scandinavian lambs; phasing out tribal warfare and cannibalism among various jungle tribes in Asia, Polynesia and the Americas; and humanitarian/missions works in developing nations worldwide (e.g. Mother Teresa, World Vision, Salvation Army)

  91. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Okay… so offering your kids up for rape is the first thing that darts through your mind when you have an angry mob at the door?

    God isn’t condoning Jonah’s actions- he is using him. He also doesn’t save Jonah from a town he is about to obliterate because they are decadent.
    Come to think of it, why did god choose Jonah? Why not cut the middle man and go to the town and say “listen- we need to talk”.

    Er yeah. That isn’t morality for one. Morality involves actions between people. You just said a person is moral based on… how they feel. Then there is the problem that god doesn’t exist, and the fact that you have just labeled almost everyone on Earth (who doesn’t believe in God- they love a different god) as immoral.

    Er… I don’t know what you are talking about. Say what you will about “eroding free speech” the fact is we got a man running for president who is off the rails- Hucklebee. You are right that you can’t say certain things in polite company, but it isn’t “the evils of PC” (well, mostly not). There are just somethings that if you say people will assume you are a bigot or an idiot.

    But I was showing it is possible to be a believer and to conflict about significant issues, going so far as to be diametrically opposed.

    About nominal Christians… yeah they are “No True Scotsmen” either. Read up on that fallacy- you commited it right there. In addition that still means atheists are more moral people than “nominal” believers.

    Three good things done by atheism? You know I can’t for the same reason I can’t name three bad things done by atheism- it is simply lack of belief! This may not have reached you yet. But it is the same reason you can’t commit god deeds because you don’t believe in Bhaal.

    To be fair I will name three good things done by outspoken atheist.

    Thomas Paine- wrote Common Sense, helped the French Revolution and tried to prevent Louie the 14th from being executed. Instumental in the success of the American Revolution.
    Carl Sagan- massive science populizer, helped illuminate danger of an all out nuclear war, involved in SETI.
    Lincoln- this man needs no introduced (although he might have been a diest; not sure)
    Voltaire-Critic of everything bad in the old regime. Helped lay the foundation for the Enlightenment and for French Secularism.
    Issac Asimov-Favorite author. Not necesarily a good deed, but I love his book’s nonetheless.
    There is more- just type in famous atheists.

    The three things you name for Christianity don’t count. It isn’t because I am an asshole (although I can be)- it is that they aren’t actually true. The Viking raids were not caused by paganism and were not solved by Christianity- the Vikings declined when their enemies grew strong enough to defeat them.

    As for phasing out cannibalism and tribal warfare, that once again isn’t something you can claim in Christianities credit. Islam managed to do similar feats as have almost ever other revealed religion. Fact is aside from the faith there were the soldiers who were very instrumental in ending violence. Or do you think that the natives were just yearning for the light to be imposed upon them?

    Only Christians do humanitarian aid? What about the Red Cross? Heck, what about Bill Gates and Warren Buffet? And read “the Missionary Position” it deconstructs the myth about Mother Teresa.

    Basically the problem with all your “good things from Christianity” is the basic problem with atributing good deads to a religion- if it is true that people do good deads based solely on being Christian, there should be evidence for it. There isn’t. The countries that have the highest standard of living, are the most peaceful and give the most to charity are nations with a large portion of the population that is atheist. Meanwhile one of the worlds most religious countires, Nigeria, is a land out of the Middle Ages.

  92. Scott Thong Says:

    God isn’t condoning Jonah’s actions- he is using him. He also doesn’t save Jonah from a town he is about to obliterate because they are decadent.

    Okay, okay… While I respect your logicking and philosophical skills, I seriously have to ask you not to discuss anything about the Bible until you actually try reading it.

    Jonah doesn’t die in the narrative. The town of Nineveh doesn’t get smashed till many generations later.

    ———————

    Come to think of it, why did god choose Jonah? Why not cut the middle man and go to the town and say “listen- we need to talk”.

    I dunno. Maybe cos they would listen to this enemy-race prophet who dares walk into town and denounce their entire civilization?

    Look at the flip side – If God came and spoke to you face to face, with thunder and lightning, wouldn’t you dismiss it as a trick or illusion or hallucination… Because God doesn’t exist, period?

    ————————

    About nominal Christians… yeah they are “No True Scotsmen” either. Read up on that fallacy- you commited it right there.

    I contend that I have not commitetd that fallacy. The difference is that there is no clearly defined, widely accepted definition of a ‘Scotsman’. But there is a clearly defined, widely accepted definition of a Christian as stated in the Bible.

    The standards laid out in the Bible to be considered a ‘True Christian’ are much stricter than just saying ‘Jesus is my Lord!’. Jesus Himself warns against words-only ‘Christians’.

    You can be a true atheist just be not believing that any gods exist. But to be a true Christian requires much more than that.

    ———————

    I’ll give you your good atheists, but reverse your ‘No True Scotsman’ on you… You’re assuming that every good event that religion was involved in was successful DESPITE religion, not BECAUSE of it. (It’s a standard atheist mentality.)

    You therefore have the conviction that ‘No True Religion’ would ever accomplish anything good, because your definition of religion = bad thing.

    ————————–

    The countries that have the highest standard of living, are the most peaceful and give the most to charity are nations with a large portion of the population that is atheist. Meanwhile one of the worlds most religious countires, Nigeria, is a land out of the Middle Ages.

    Aren’t the populations with the highest percentage atheist (at least nominally atheist) Soviet Russia, North Korea, Mao’s China, Cambodia? Russia and Cambodia because they actively murdered religious believers.

    And Nigeria has a large Muslim population, which farnkly does not like sharing turf with unclean, kaffir unbelievers.

    To differentiate between the different religions, compare Christian-majority nations (Europe and America before secular humanism) to Muslim majority nations (Middle East, Pakistan, Afghanistan).

    ———————

    A new discussion topic, one I don’t think you’ve answered yet: Since you believe in absolute morality but not any absolute gods of religion,

    1) Where do you get your moral code from?

    2) If it is from the current society, isn’t that completely relative morality? What if you had been born in Medieval Arabia, would you not then consider killing female babies a moral act?

    3) Where is this absolute morality from, how is it defined, by whom?

  93. Samuel Skinner Says:

    I’m not saying god obliterates the town at the time- I’m saying he is sending him to the town to fix them. God has a propensity of killing things that aren’t working right (Flood).

    I respect evidence. And that doesn’t answer why he didn’t show up except usually to isolated individuals. Plus he doesn’t need to impress anyone- he’s God. As for the “you wouldn’t believe your eyes- well duh, not immediately. I mean God does violate multiple logical rules- it is hard to see how he is concievable. However, if I see the square circle I will change my mind.

    Okay… you just made it impossible to tell who is a christian- or any other ideology. After all the requirements for most ideologies is simply that you claim to follow them. If there is a standard in the bible and it is subject to interpretation… How do you know then that any are “True Christians?”

    Well, duh. I will admit there are exceptions- obviously believing god is on your side or you will be given immortal life is a powerful boost to act. The problem is that there is no… discriminator system. Good deeds and bad deeds are both impeled.

    However the reason I implied that is because people tend to attribute everyhing good ever to christians. The university system, abolitionism, freedom, democracy, love, toothbrushes, you get the idea. The fact is these ideas are indeppendent of Christianity (although to be fair they are incompatible with many religions including literal Christians).

    Believing something because you want to believe something leads to actions that are disconnected from reality, which IS bad.

    Nope. The party in the Sov Union was atheist. The population may not have been, but given the spread of cults after the fall I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the USSR was not a breeding ground for critical thinking. China is over run with religions- the party has officially integrated

    http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/200611/28/eng20061128_326018.html

    religion into their doctrine. Yes the Chinese may have officialy become the first openly evil country. North Koreans believe their leader is divine. Cambodia I don’t know about- however I do remeber they targeted anyone who wore glasses- they were extremely anti-intellectual.

    You are right about Muslims vs Christians. That wasn’t what I was refering to though- I was talking about the witch hunts.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/dec/09/tracymcveigh.theobserver

    There are no Christian majority nations. You can’t have it both ways- people who are nominal christians can’t be counted to make up a Christian nation.

    Where do I get morality from and why is mine absolute? Wiki- always wiki

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moral_absolutism

    Seriously though my morality appears to be innate. The justification and ability to critize is external.

    Despite what you may have heard, one of Muhhamed’s better actions was to ban female infanticide. However your question of “would you condoned or carry out this” is a valid question. However there are people throughout history who have held themselves to a higher standard. Ignersol. Wilberforce. Thomas Paine. George Washington. Flavius Aetius. There have been people who were better through out history, although some of their shine was probably added on afterward. However the point of absolute morality is that you can critize something no matter the date or place.

    You see absolute morality comes from a place, a great shiny place… just kidding. Absolute morality is quite simply comes from people. It isn’t defined by them, but it is based on them. A system that denies the importance of people quite simply isn’t morality. If you want someone more coherent go to Daylight Atheism. He is a much better writer than I am and he is going to write a book about that subject.

    You may have noticed I essentially dodged the matter. That is true- I didn’t want to leave sentances you can exploit- it is impossible for me to rationalize… er explain them in real time.

  94. Scott Thong Says:

    I’m not saying god obliterates the town at the time- I’m saying he is sending him to the town to fix them. God has a propensity of killing things that aren’t working right (Flood).

    You ought to clearer with yoru words then, as your sentence:

    God isn’t condoning Jonah’s actions- he is using him. He also doesn’t save Jonah from a town he is about to obliterate because they are decadent.

    Seriously led me off in the total opposite understanding as your clarification.

    ———————-

    Okay… you just made it impossible to tell who is a christian- or any other ideology. After all the requirements for most ideologies is simply that you claim to follow them. If there is a standard in the bible and it is subject to interpretation… How do you know then that any are “True Christians?”

    If the requriement for an ideology is to simply claim I follow it, then picture this: Johnny goes on a rape and murder spree, targeting abortion doctors, critics of megachurches, and publicly avowed atheists. When captured, he says that he believes that no god exists. So he’s an atheist.

    You see how just claiming something and not acting it does not count as true ideology in common sense, real world terms.

    The problem of Bible interpretation is a huge one – that is why Christian groups cannot just shut down pro-homosexuality, pro-abortion or all-religions-in-one churches, as each claims to be really Christian.

    But each interpretation relies on logic and rationale, which gives us a way to discern which is accurate and which is faulty.

    ————————

    However the reason I implied that is because people tend to attribute everyhing good ever to christians. The university system, abolitionism, freedom, democracy, love, toothbrushes, you get the idea. The fact is these ideas are indeppendent of Christianity (although to be fair they are incompatible with many religions including literal Christians).

    True, but to be fair, critics will attribute every bad thing to Christianity such as the Crusades (which were also highly political), Inquisition (more power struggles) and witch hunts (public paranoia and personal gain).

    The truth is, religion or nonreligion are seldom the direct motivators of human achievement/notoriety… But sometimes they are, and often they contribute strongly to the formation of the person’s or society’s values. It isn’t called the Protestant Work Ethic for no reason – many Protestants ‘just happened’ to believe in hard work and savings.

    —————————

    That wasn’t what I was refering to though- I was talking about the witch hunts.

    I’ll bing in that old Scotsman, and quote “Thou shall not commit murder”, “Love thy neighbour and thy enemy”, and “Love all mankind as yourself” which these hysterians apparently don’t have in their Bibles.

    Are these Nigerian ‘evangelical pastors’ actually servants of God, or are they just in it for the power, money and murder kicks?

    It’s back to the ‘Claim to be Republican but support Democrat policies’ thing again. Or are the KKK the true Christians of the world?

    And for the record, the Spanish and Italian Inquisitions (which were not actually as horrific as popularly perceived) actually prevented mass witch hunt hysteria from starting in those countries – because the Inquisitors were theologically trained, and knew to differentiate between baseless accusations and the real ability to witchily teleport out of a holding cell.

    —————————

    There are no Christian majority nations. You can’t have it both ways- people who are nominal christians can’t be counted to make up a Christian nation.

    It is sad, but true. The true ‘Kingdom of God’ is a spiritual one that links all real Christians, wherever in the world they may be.

    ————————–

    Absolute morality is quite simply comes from people. It isn’t defined by them, but it is based on them. A system that denies the importance of people quite simply isn’t morality.

    I agree on the last sentence. It is just, what is truly important to people is always so different and changes with the times.

    —————————

    You may have noticed I essentially dodged the matter. That is true- I didn’t want to leave sentances you can exploit- it is impossible for me to rationalize… er explain them in real time.

    Now now, while it is fun to ‘exploit’ loose threads, my real aim is actually to defend my stance and beliefs.

    And as for your jibe at ‘rationalizing’… If I argue rationally and reasonably, isn’t that better than being irrational?

  95. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Sorry about that- the written word isn’t my first tongue.

    If Bobby doesn’t believe in a god he is an atheist. He may be acting in the manner of a far-right wing nut, but he could simply be insane or think religion is important to keep the proles in line.

    The defernce is that some of those things are the fault of Christianity- the idea that faith and reason is to be avoid is a virtue is an important compentant of political philosophies such as facism. A better example would be the one Dawkin’s gives where something evil is done for an explicitly (and only for) religious reason. It is the taking of a child from his parents because… he’s been baptized! So, he isn’t a Jew now- he’s a Catholic. It is worth noticing that people around the world (this was in the 1830s) were disgusted (the papacy is after you!), but Catholics defended this action. Then of course there is the whole Christian history of anti-semitism- although the Romans and others didn’t like the Jews they only killed them when they stood in between them and conquest. By contrast Medieval Europe simply dumped them out. They were banished from Spain in the 1490s, relatively tolerant compared to England and France 1100s and 1200s respectively. I’ll be fair to the papacy though- when the black plague broke out the current pope asked that people not kill the Jews. However, things got ugly and they ignored him…
    Saying the church is always evil is an overstatement, but usually when they do things that can’t be justified on secular grounds they are doing something evil.

    The Spanish inquistion wasn’t as evil. I know. It isn’t atheist propaganda though- it is English propaganda. And your statement they keep witchhunts at bay is a load of bull. The Spanish inquistion wasn’t formed to deal with witches- it was formed to deal with Muslims and Jews who claimed to be Christian.
    As for the witchtrials I was refering to the madness in Northern Europe. I don’t think the inquisition lidded it in the south- there were no witch trials in Hungry (need to check- could be wrong).
    Well, how do you know? I mean Nigeria is an extremely pious country and at least some of them must be sincere. And since you happen to believe in the power and reality of witchcraft, so do they.

    Than you admit that there are Muslim majority nations, but no Christian majority nations? Isn’t that like saying “pure” Christianity was never put into action? And why do you sound like a commie when I say that?

    I know what people consider important changes, but part of the reason is they get the previous need fullfilled. People today won’t list “not being eaten by wolves as important, while people in 14th century Paris will (the black plague depopulated the city that badly), but the fact is people today aren’t hip to being eaten by wolves. It sort of builds up.
    The only downside to thinking like that is people become… soft. Complacent. Appeasers. They feel entitled to all the previous freedoms and don’t understand why they can’t have them all. You know what I’m talking about. Europe. It isn’t necesarilly their welfare state that is the problem as much as burying their heads in the sand like ostriches. Personally you remind me of Hucklebee. He may be completely of the wall in regards to almost everything, but when it comes to Islam he is dead on. Islam is a religion of peace the same way communism is an ideology of peace- once the unbelievers are dead peace will follow.

    The reason I don’t state where I get more morality and ethics is because it is internal. The justification I get elsewhere. So far morality breaks down into “what’s best for me, my family, my country and humanity?” Not so helpful, but… I know! Ask me questions and you can deduce how I get my morality based on the answers! Heck, that’s what I have been doing to you!

    I have to explain the rationalizing comment. Theories need to have an explanatory power about the world. They need to be something that can be useful. If a theory, no matter what, can be rationalized, no matter the result, then the theory is useless because it is unfalsible. Rationalizing in this case refers to the act of trying to make something unfalsible. The problem is everything needs to be falsible or else there is no way of choosing between it and other unfalsible theories.

  96. Scott Thong Says:

    If Bobby doesn’t believe in a god he is an atheist. He may be acting in the manner of a far-right wing nut, but he could simply be insane or think religion is important to keep the proles in line.

    What I meant was, Bobby obviously is a religious fanatic – going to six different religious institutions over the week, sacrificing bulls in his backyard, painting Chtulhu-ian Elders on his bedroom wall, and regularly calling on the spirits of the ley.

    But when he is caught for his murder spree, he claims “I am an atheist.” Does that make him a real atheist? Or is it just a misleading claim?

    Similarly, if someone claims he is a Christian but does not read the Bible to find out what Christianity is all about, is he really a Christian? Or is it just a misleading claim?

    ————————–

    The defernce is that some of those things are the fault of Christianity- the idea that faith and reason is to be avoid is a virtue is an important compentant of political philosophies such as facism.

    I have to agree with you there that people throughout history have often been motivated by religious fervor to do flagrantly wrong things. But people also are motivated to do wrong by political leanings, philosophical belief and personal conviction.

    A better judgement would be whether the religion itself proscribes such wrongful behaviour as child snatching and anti-Semitism. As I see it, Christianity is meant to discourage and condemn all behaviour that hurts others.

    —————————-

    Saying the church is always evil is an overstatement, but usually when they do things that can’t be justified on secular grounds they are doing something evil.

    So your definition of ‘evil’ is ‘wrong by secular standards, no matter what religion may say.’

    Funnily enough, the religious definition of ‘evil’ is ‘wrong by religious standards, no matter what the secular world ay say’.

    —————————-

    The Spanish inquistion wasn’t as evil. I know. It isn’t atheist propaganda though- it is English propaganda. And your statement they keep witchhunts at bay is a load of bull. The Spanish inquistion wasn’t formed to deal with witches- it was formed to deal with Muslims and Jews who claimed to be Christian.

    Glad you know more than most people about the history of the Inquisition. Yup, it was demonised by the English (Protestants) who were at war with the Spanish (Catholic). So the writers of the day protrayed the Catholics as always having been cruel to Protestants in order to rile up the public fervor.

    Yes, it was originally formed to judge on heresies – but the institutions and protocols it put into place happened to come in handy when the witch mania started later on and spread throughout Europe.

    Basically, the well-trained Inquisitors knew to differentiate between true heresy (e.g. blaspheming God unrepentantly) and baseless claims (accusing your business rival of witchcraft, yet providing no proof).

    http://www.crisismagazine.com/october2003/madden.htm

    Find the word ‘witch’ to get to the section.

    —————————–

    Well, how do you know? I mean Nigeria is an extremely pious country and at least some of them must be sincere. And since you happen to believe in the power and reality of witchcraft, so do they.

    They may be religiously motivated, but it doesn’t look like the kind of religion I see in the standard sane church every week. I’ll take ‘No True Scotsman’ for $800, Alex.

    Well, on the power and reality of withcraft, you are assuming that of me… But you assume correctly. I do believe that ‘magic’ exists, bu not the Harry Potter or Enchanted Hollywood/fairytale stuff.

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/07/30/what-is-the-source-of-magic-in-the-real-world/

    According to Christian understanding, magic deals with the mind, emotions and spirit – things that science can not even find a basis for, so no surprise that it isn’t proven empirically.

    And by no means are Christians meant to kill witches on sight. How do you even prove a person is a witch or High Necromancer of Vecna? There’s no process of inquiry for it.

    In fact, the only time where a ‘witch’ appears in the New Testament is Simon the sorceror. And he was convinced, of his own free will, to give up his charlatan ways by the peaceful example set by the Apostles – which surely did not involve machetes.

    So if some evangelical Nigerians are running amuck in the name of my God, I cannot defend their actions. If I were Billy Graham, I’d be over there slapping them sensible right now.

    ———————————

    Than you admit that there are Muslim majority nations, but no Christian majority nations? Isn’t that like saying “pure” Christianity was never put into action? And why do you sound like a commie when I say that?

    There are Christian majority nations, but I don’t think that there are any run on Christian theological laws other than the Vatican City.

    Well, in their defense, the Commies never got their true utopia started. If everyone were selfless, hardworking, just and fair, Communism would be the best political system possible.

    Unfortunately, people just happen to be even WORSE b*stards under Communism. Particularly if they are denied their Opiate of the Masses hat brainwashes them into thinking an all-powerful, angry god will smite them for doing bad things.

    ———————————-

    The only downside to thinking like that is people become… soft. Complacent. Appeasers. They feel entitled to all the previous freedoms and don’t understand why they can’t have them all. You know what I’m talking about. Europe. It isn’t necesarilly their welfare state that is the problem as much as burying their heads in the sand like ostriches.

    Good fellow, what do you say we put down our harsh words, sign a Treaty of Alliance, and get back to endless philosophical debating only once the physical threat of Wordlwide Jihad Death has been snuffed out?

    …Is what I would say if you and I were political leaders of our respective nations.

    ———————————-

    Personally you remind me of Hucklebee. He may be completely of the wall in regards to almost everything, but when it comes to Islam he is dead on. Islam is a religion of peace the same way communism is an ideology of peace- once the unbelievers are dead peace will follow.

    Actually, I was rooting for Fred then Mitt. Yes, Mitt is a Mormon and Protestants consider them a wacky cult. But he is strongly Conservative, and very anti-terror, which for a guy who doesn’t even live in the States has the most relevance.

    ———————————–

    The reason I don’t state where I get more morality and ethics is because it is internal. The justification I get elsewhere. So far morality breaks down into “what’s best for me, my family, my country and humanity?” Not so helpful, but… I know! Ask me questions and you can deduce how I get my morality based on the answers! Heck, that’s what I have been doing to you!

    But what is the source of morality? If it ultimately comes down to just ourselves, then how can we know that in a different time and place, we wouldn’t have come to completely different conclusions about what is moral?

    ———————————–

    I have to explain the rationalizing comment. Theories need to have an explanatory power about the world. They need to be something that can be useful. If a theory, no matter what, can be rationalized, no matter the result, then the theory is useless because it is unfalsible. Rationalizing in this case refers to the act of trying to make something unfalsible. The problem is everything needs to be falsible or else there is no way of choosing between it and other unfalsible theories.

    My bad then. What I had meant was that I was explaining the basis for my beliefs and defending the morality of the Bible in a rational manner, as opposed to rationalizing them as justified no matter what.

    I believe my explanations are falsifiable using standard examination of language, history and internal consistency.

    —————————–

    I’ve found a succinct way to say what I’ve been trying to say in this entire post. From http://deeperwaters.wordpress.com/2008/02/13/preliminary-thoughts-on-richard-dawkinss-the-god-delusion/ modified from the Argument From Beauty:

    “It’s simple. Either morality rests on something outside of us and is therefore objective, or else it is subjective and nothing is truly moral.”

    Or another from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theonomy#Definitions

    “There is no alternative but that of theonomy or autonomy.”

    Theonomy = God is the only source of ethics
    Autonomy = Each person is his/her own source of ethics

    Simply put, either ethics come from an absolute source (e.g. God) or they are invented by humans themselves (e.g. relative to the situation and culture).

    ——————————

    PS. It’s so much nicer when we aren’t shouting each other down. Agreed?

  97. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Will respond when not tired… screen blurry agvc….

  98. Scott Thong Says:

    No prob, take your time. Gives me a rest too.

  99. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Is it just me or are we beginning to reach the nets storage capacity? How many pages have we run through.

    Okay, atheism is not believing in any gods. If you believe in any gods you aren’t an atheist. Now Billy has done actions that only make sense if he is a believer. Or nuts. But there is no criteria you have to have to be an atheist. Just know that hating god, devil worship, praying for divine aid and the like automatically exclude you from the list of atheists.

    The difference though is that ideologies are easier to combat- libertarians aren’t a real threat aside from their bombing campaigns (the “pure” libertarians are essentially anarchists) and communism has been discredited by the fall of the Sov Union. Although the leftists are making a come back in South America, they aren’t going full fledged communism. Ideologies, by necesary have to be in the real world. By contrast religious ideals stipulate the supernatural and attempt to make themselves unfalsible, while at the same time attempt to claim power in the real world. A world were there was actual gods might be something like D&D, except less violent and choatic (the game is polytheistic because religions substitute for nationalism and ideologies- having only one choice on the block would be boring). I know- arguement from nerdom isn’t a convincing arguement; it just happens to be very fun to make.

    By secular standards I mean ones that are based on this world and this life. As an atheist and a rationalist I have no other path to critize people except for reality.

    Why do people try to soften the witch mania? The weren’t so perfesionally train as there were cases of inquisitor doubting that torting people got true confessions who were than accused of witchcraft and tortured themselves. But the fact is that no matter the body count the killed thousands of people for no purpose. They may have believed they had a purpose in doing so, but reality, like ethics isn’t decided like that.

    I’m going to use Sam Harris here “if religion is based on faith, which requires no external justification, than how can you condemn things that people do in the name of faith?”. Or, just because you consider them nutty doesn’t give you any grounds to critize them other than “misinterpretation”.

    Actually communes are communist. They actually fullfill the criteria. They break down however because they either lack work ethic or they are unable to react to change. Communism was never imposed on a large scale because it is actually impossible- the closest idea that would work is the singularity idea, but that isn’t really communism. The most obvious problem is assuming the government can run the economy.

    On people being selfish bastards… not entirely true. However people seem to be hard wired to avoid situations where they have no protection from being ripped off and the like. People tend to get nicer as they have less to worry about- although as they get richer their time becomes more valuable and they can be more rude (ala NYC).

    Because, quite simply in the US we have people who want to do the same thing to our country that the Muslim world wants to do, but from the inside. Bloody Fifth Columnist. Beside, we haven’t emerged into a global war yet (although it could happen- if I get drafted just think; I might meet you in person!). Let me put it this way- it would be like Dwight asking the whites and blacks to stop fighting because of the threat of communism. I know- atheists are off as bad as blacks, but the fact is they are discriminated against on religious grounds and are considered bad people. Gays have a better chance of becoming president. Heck, we have the same number of communists in congress as we have atheists (1 of each- the Communist is from Vermont, but he changed to a socialist). Basically we are fighting for the highest stakes imagineable- you for the souls of the human race and I for their continued existance.

    Mormonism isn’t a cult any more than Christianity! Not reassuring to you coming from me. Unlike most people who think conservatives are nuts I am rather authoritarian. Cameras, invasion of privacy and the like fit with me. Of course I’m currently against the government doing it for anything but capital crimes (if only because I don’t doubt they will use it to crack down on “vice”, “deviance” and “unauthorized politicking”).

    On morality (which is technically what this whole thread is about). Technically it is either “God is the source of ethics” or “God isn’t the source of ethics”, not “each person is the source of ethics”. Well, technically each person is the source of their ethics. We are talking about justification.
    For me, my conscience isn’t actually sufficient because it acts in an insane matter- I only have to deal with shame from an action. Guilt doesn’t kick in until later. Then it beats the shit out of me (it feels like being punched in the gut). I personally had this happened today- don’t type in rule 23? and don’t read about empathy relating to fictional characters. Ironically enough almost no one feels a large amount of empathy for nameless individuals, so instances like that can affect me (or just about everyone- Hitler was a vegetarian on the grounds that killing animals was wrong!), but feel perfectly okay when you never have to see or hear anyone of the people who is hurt.

    Sorry for the digression. But we need a standard of morility for four reasons: dealing with cases like that where empathy isn’t enough, judging between two cultures to find which is more moral, answering kids questions and raising them right and of course providing guidelines for those who weren’t born with any.

    It might sound like morality is hard to construct, but if you provide a goal or a purpose there is only one best way to achieve it. So there is only one standard for morality. The goal, or the “best” result is the things people value- life, happpiness, cool things, comfort- even if we have to sacrifice in the short term to achieve it. It may sound realitive, but it isn’t- there is only one best path. We may not know it yet, but we can know it and learn how to follow it. I know you are going to say “it is still subjective”. Values, by definition are subjective. However, we can critize some values on the grounds they are impossible to fullfil (aka the ones that require superiority over others). Most of the rest tend to correspond to what I stated was the best result. Think about it this way- people are essentially the same they were at the dawn of recorded history- the differeance is technology and the extencion of people who are worthy of consideration. The reason that we have increased the number of people who matter isn’t a cultural construct- it is a walk down the path. We are further advaced than our ancestors- we don’t own slaves, we consider strangers human beings automatically and we actually listen more often. You can say how this is better and why the alternatives are worse. Why can’t you say this for everything? The answer is for all moral issues you can. Slavery is wrong because it uses other humans as tools and leads to brutal police state like societies. Murder is wrong because we want to live in a land where complete strangers won’t automatically kill or be killed.

    Wow… basically summed myself up as a consequentialist. “Good deeds and good intentions are good because they lead to good results”. Probably a flaw in my thinking, but I’ll root the bastard out.

    Obviously people have some of the pieces of the puzzle innate to them, or else society would have broken down. Just as clear is that we have a ways to go, as is clear from the news.

    I’d give specific examples, except that I suck at it.

    The reason we aren’t shouting is because I go through stages when dealing with… people who are very unique- first cold fury, the openly angry, then more collected. I don’t shout on forums because I am unable to do so- plus it hurts my vocal cords. The real irony here is that I am currently a fanatic, but the subject I am fanatical on isn’t atheism. It may change- my political opinions are extremely flexible because I don’t have a ton of information to go on ( I’m talking about the “sane conservative” subjects- charter schools, gun rights- probably different in your country).

    As for why you don’t yell…probably because you have a kitty as your icon. It is so cute and disarming…. That am I haven’t done any “your moma jokes”. Insulting a persons background tends to lead to yelling, but since the internet isn’t personal, it is hard to critize a person’s family. My family is a little… odd. Needless to say you won’t here much about them.

    Given the length of this post there are bound to be loose threads. Please point them out if you have no idea what I am talking about.

  100. Samuel Skinner Says:

    I just realized something- I might be rambling a little incoherently, especially with the porn and computer game related remarks. Tjose were refering to one of the problems with using empathy as a guideline for moral rules- there are a large number of people who fall outside your immediate bubble. Although people have generally been good to their immediate family group (I think this holds true throughout history- there are, as always exceptions). So you have to get people to have a large group of people who they consider human. It isn’t easy. There is actually an upper limit on the number of people you can directly empathize with, after a certain threshold you can’t keep track of everyone and your mind goes numb.

    Just in case you are wondering why I ramble- it’s because I basically write “stream of conciousness”. I’m just that smart/cockey.

    I think I was also refering to the “reasons for being moral”. I think there is only four- empathy, desire to be good, community reason (I want to live in a place where) and of course “or else” (judgement day, exectutions).

    Eh- just comment. I get more coherent when I’m responding to something short. Dang… I really need to right in the afternoon more often.

  101. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Found somethings you might like. First, an ally.

    http://fawstin.blogspot.com/

    Then something just plain cool

  102. nixam Says:

    true… atheism searches for some meaning… although fails miserably at it… since they dont have an absolute moral reference, they end up justifying their “faith” or “actions” in the shadow of “everything is relative” paradox :)

    i wrote something similar here…

    http://nixam.wordpress.com/2008/03/14/morality-is-a-fad/

  103. Aspentroll Says:

    If there is a god then he is either asleep or away on an extended vacation. Maybe he (she) is helping out in a 3rd world type galaxy many light years away and hasn’t heard about all the crap that been going on here on his home planet.
    Something is wrong, he has all these powers and still can’t seem to do anything about all the problems we seem to have.
    Has this god lost all his power and the devil has taken over. Is this just his way of paying us all back for not totally giving ourselves over to him? But what about all the fundamentalist christians who have done all the right stuff? They are still getting cancer, being robbed and their children are dying for no good reasons. It seems that we are damned if we do and damned if we don’t become born again. Praying doesn’t seem to help. Giving money to Benny Hinn, Peter Popoff and Pat Robertson doesn’t seem to work either.
    What to do, what to do?

  104. Scott Thong Says:

    Why is there so much suffering? Because of our own sin and evil.

    http://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/11/22/the-sin-theory-of-evolution-reconciling-evolution-creationism-and-intelligent-design/

    ———————————–

    Is God still there and in control? Yes, as the song goes:

    God is too wise to be mistaken.
    God is too good to be unkind.
    So when you don’t understand,
    when you don’t see His plan,
    When you can’t trace His hand, trust His heart

    http://writeathome.wordpress.com/2007/02/04/song-on-my-heart/

    The Devil has some power right now, but as the book of Job reveals, God can smack him down any time.

    ———————————-

    We look at all the problems and bad things in this life, but forget to see all the good and wonderful things… The giggle of little children, the purring of a kitten, the taste of chocolate ice-cream.

    We are born and live our lives and experience joy, and never even thank God for all these things which He gave us for free…

    But when He takes back even a little of these borrowed things, we complain so bitterly.

    But what right do we have to complain, when our very existence is on loan from the Creator? We haven’t earned our life; most don’t even think of paying back anything for it by living for God.

    Giving money to any pastor or preacher will not do anything… Because it is God who gives and takes away.

    And even when He takes away life… We Christians know that a much better life is even now waiting for us in God’s heaven. THAT is the promise we hold on to, cancer or not in this short life on Earth.

    What to do then? Why, only trust that God has it all worked out for the best, accept His salvation of your soul by giving your life over to Jesus, and believe that one day Jesus will return to Earth to make everything 100% good and right again.

  105. Proof This Is A Christian Country « Athiests Think They’re SO Smart! Says:

    [...] athiests want to turn America into a communist country like Russia and outlaw god.  They’ve perverted us so much we let the ACLU force The Ten [...]

  106. N4RI Says:

    toto su stranky na picu!!! heeeeee

  107. Asshole strikes again! « Shidemn’s Rantings Says:

    [...] athiests want to turn America into a communist country like Russia and outlaw god.  They’ve perverted us so much we let the ACLU force The Ten [...]

  108. shidemn Says:

    Hey what do you know a link to my page. well as long as your there go ahead tell me im ignorant, and an asshole.
    I copied that guys blogs to my page so people could read them, then read my comment to him, just is case he dicided to delete my comments

  109. Scott Thong Says:

    Why would I insult you, good sir?

    Usually it is whoever disagrees with my posts who comes over to my blog and insults me, then gets all riled up about my ‘personal attacks’ when I respond in kind.

    (Not to insinuate that you are one of those sorts, btw).

    PS. You can also Print Screen, then paste onto Microsoft Paint and save as a jpg as evidence of your comments. That’s what I normally do.

  110. shidemn Says:

    “PS. You can also Print Screen, then paste onto Microsoft Paint and save as a jpg as evidence of your comments. That’s what I normally do.”
    I think i will start doing that, putting the actual text takes to much room.

    Thanks, :)
    shidemn

  111. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Shidemn probably has had bad experiences with theists. Repeatedly. Over an extended period. So needless to say I’m betting his expectations are low. Or he is just likes cursing. Or he likes fighting on the net. One of the three.

    To shidemn: don’t worry- Scott is one of those annoying apologists who reads the bible literally without reading it literally. You know, historical context. I’d point out how the infalliable word of god doesn’t need context- but I’m sure Scott has a reason God’s divine benevolence can’t show up in sarin wrapped form.

  112. shidemn Says:

    “Shidemn probably has had bad experiences with theists. Repeatedly. Over an extended period”
    This one.

  113. simon thong Says:

    That’s a good response, shidemn! But you’ll find scott a kind Christian, someone with heart. And an extremely clear, logical mind.

  114. shidemn Says:

    Well I Hope so, I am constantly barraged by hateful ones.
    have a read, http://shidemn.wordpress.com

  115. simon thong Says:

    I read. shidemn, and unless you had censored the comments, I found them courteous and only slightly aggressive….particularly those in response to your Questions..

  116. shidemn Says:

    I am refering to people such as angryxian, but either way it usually when i disagree with them that they get mean, they dont on my newer posts because i have taken up a nicer disposition.

  117. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Scott is rather sane and nice. For example Vox Day is a good example of how you can have someone who is nice AND not sane.

    http://voxday.blogspot.com/2007/02/mailvox-sharpening-knives.html

    So, Scott is a good person to argue with. Heck, he tries to be scholarly (can’t tell if he succeds- I’m not a Bible expert). However he still manages to commit double think. For example the whole point of this post is that only absolute morality guards against atrocities that can be carried out by relativism. So Scott has absolute morality? No, he is guided by his conscience. Isn’t that contradictory- no god gave him a conscience. But, if everyone has a conscience how can people disagree? How can people get opposite answers even if they have no stake in the outcome? Scott might be able to answer that- but only if you take the existance of God as a given. He is a good person to practice arguing against (he is well mannered, can spell correctly unlike most of those who surf the web, answers all your questions, etc). You just won’t be able to change his mind. And he won’t be able to change yours for that manner…

  118. Scott Thong Says:

    Guided by my conscience? I say thee nay! I have never stated such.

    If God tells me in His word that homosexuality, incest and bestiality are wrong, then they are wrong!

    Even though I personally feel that there is nothing wrogn with consenting adults having consenting sex, I cannot accept it based on Christian principle.

    My mind and conscience are fallible, imperfect and liable to be swayed. I cannot trust it in the long run.

  119. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Actually I was refering to baby killing. And you stated that “If God told me to do it I wouldn’t do it. The conscience God gave me prevents me from doing it”.

    So, yes Scott, you contradicted yourself. So which is it? God’s absolute morality as revealed in the scriptures (leading to total obedience to God and okaying the baby killing if he asks) or basing your morality on your conscience (thus invalidating the whole argument of your post). Although it is true your mind and conscience are falliable, remember that it doesn’t make the Word any better- you are using your mind and conscience to interpret and follow it.

    Personally, I hope you find a sophist way to slip through like an eel.

    Um… your statement seems to imply that you find all sex wrong- I’m pretty sure you didn’t mean to call the entire human race deviant and amoral… unless of course that is the origional sin. I which case justification get more bizarre.

  120. Scott Thong Says:

    You paraphrased me. What I said was:

    If ‘God’ asked me to do it, I would not – the same conscience He gave me and the same commandments He uttered would not allow me to.

    So there is no contradiction between my conscience and God’s word there – neither permits killing babies, which liberal humanist atheism with its human-decided relative morality does to the tune of 1 million victims every month.

    It’s easy enough to Find, Copy and Paste my quote. So why the misrepresentation?

  121. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Scott, you claim that the bible says “thou shalt not murder”. Unfortunately the bible has repeat cases of people murdering in God’s name, with his approval.

    In addition you claim that you follow the commandment because God commands it. However you declared you wouldn’t kill children even if God commanded it. So you have a case where Go orders two contradictory moral actions. What do you do? You use your conscience and DISOBEY God! However, disobeying absolute morality is bad- but in this case it is good. The only possible conclusion is that you can’t use divine command as a basis for morality.

    And just in case you claim that God would never ask you to murder, remember that the punishment for breaking the commandments is to be put to death! In short the tablet is contradictory- unless you assume that murder only referance unjustified killing. Unfortunately justified killing in this case is killing ordered by God… you see the problem now?

  122. Scott Thong Says:

    A problem in theory, but not in practice. Where does God command me to kill anyone, eh?

    Am I a Jewish member of the Sanhendrin, that I must stone adulterers?

    Am I an Israelite warrior, that I must slay (now extinct) Edomites?

    Tell me where Jesus or Paul encourages us to slay in the name of God. Here, I’ll even help you with the searching:

    Search the Bible for ‘kill’ from New Testament onwards

    In case you’ve forgotten, my holy book is the Bible, not that other one with lots of commands to slay unbelievers till the end of time.

    I personally wouldn’t kill children, because God does not command it. Where’s the contradiction there?

    Contradiction only in nonexistant, fantasy, fictional theory.

    But you’re absolutely right that murder is defined as unjustified killing. That is why the state can have executions of serial killers and soldiers can shoot the enemy dead in defense of their land, and neither is lawfully murder.

  123. Samuel Skinner Says:

    So only the New Testament counts? Why? That doesn’t make sense- if the New one is the word of God, so is the Old one. Am I missing something?

    And, it is on record that God order people to kill and they did kill. They killed people for breaking the ten commandments- the most obvious case being the Golden Calf incident. You can almost hear Moses say “you are either with us or against us”.

  124. wits0 Says:

    The equation Scott, Communism = Atheism = Relative Morality actually isn’t quite fair, or exact.

    It was, e.g., the Communists who gave atheism a bad name. Buddhists have been known to be atheists long before the forces of Darkness in the form of Communism(with its expedient ‘means justify the ends’ evil) that atheism got automatically tarred. Trust these sorts of perverse atheistic “Progressives” to invert values.

    There are stupid atheists as there are well cultivated and learned ones. The stupid ones rankle everyone’s nerves and they get all the focus. Instead of recognizing the unbridled evil in Jihadism(which is always aggressive), the weak brained people prefer to draw a moral equivalence between Christianity and Islam. There is none possible yet they persists with their shallow effort of out of mainly hatred and indulgent stupidity. It is as if self-loathingness with their own given System warrants such leftist idiotarian spews. And they think they have the moral highground!

  125. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Communism isn’t means justify ends. Communism is “well, we know you won’t like it now, but trust us- these changes will improve everything”. Unfortunately the changes tended to ignore human nature. It didn’t help that the countries that were communists had a history of despotism.

    Obviously someonw hasn’t being paying attention to the shit Christians have done. Why do you think Gays fear for their lives. Yeah, I know it “isn’t as bad”- just like the Nazis weren’t as bad as the Huns. Still, we fight both. Well, not “we”…

    The fight agaisnt Christianity and Islam is similtaneous- arguments against one hurt the other. Neither can fall as long as one lives.

  126. hutchrun Says:

    The fight agaisnt Christianity and Islam is similtaneous- arguments against one hurt the other
    ______________________________________________________
    I disagree with that. Anyone saying that would not know the difference between the two.

  127. hutchrun Says:

    An atheist walks into a bar and finds a priest, a rabbi, and an imam in boisterious discussion at a table in the back.
    “What is this, a joke?” he thinks to himself.

    Nevertheless, he orders a pint of bitters and the fish and chips and sits down, far away from the raucous theological discussion. Or so he hoped.
    After a few moments, the priest approaches his table. “Pardon me, sir,” says the priest, “but you look a little lonely by yourself. Would you like to join us in the back?”
    “No thanks, mate,” says the atheist. “I’m not into all that god stuff.”
    “But God is the most important thing in the universe!” replied the priest. “How can you be disinterested in the Almighty?”
    The atheist banged his fist on the table rudely, clattering his pint and his fish and chips. “I’m just trying to have a bite here. Just leave me alone, and let me eat.”
    The priest scoffs off back to his table, and the atheist is left alone with his beer.
    After a few more minutes, the rabbi approaches the atheist’s table. “Surely you don’t mean what you said. God shouldn’t be a burden, or an annoyance. Having and keeping the divine should be a joy in your life.”
    The atheist stands up, and turns to the rabbi. “This is why religion is losing members,” he said, and he banged his fist on the table again and again. His beer wobbled. “It’s because you won’t! Stop! Bothering! People! When they’re trying! To have! A Fucking! Meal!”

    By this time, the imam had rushed up to the atheist’s table. “Sir, please, calm down, please!” he cried. The atheist turned on him. “And what do you want?” he yelled as he slammed his fist down on the table one more time. Suddenly there was a crash. Behind him, his fish and his beer had crashed onto the floor and the plate and glass had shattered into a hundred pieces..

    Amid the stunned silence of the pub, the imam softly spoke up. “Sir, I was just trying to save your sole!”

  128. hutchrun Says:

    The fight agaisnt Christianity and Islam is similtaneous- arguments against one hurt the other
    ____________________________________________________________
    That would take a few volumes to elucidate. Thankfully Spencer`s done a little bit, so here` one that could be considered difficult for those into facetiousness:

    And what about the hijab coming from Christianity? This is a favorite trope of the notorious Karen Armstrong, who has never shown any intense regard for the truth. Even if true, it does nothing to explain why women in Muslim countries are threatened for not wearing the hijab, while this doesn’t seem to happen in countries with majority Christian populations. More importantly, it ignores the strong foundations that the covering of women has in Islamic tradition. Aisha referred to the time when the veil was “made obligatory (for all the Muslims ladies) to observe the veil.” (Bukhari 6.60.318). Some argue that this actually referred only to Muhammad’s wives, but there is also material like this:

    http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/020719.php

  129. hutchrun Says:

    More:

    “..And finally, there is still religious debate regarding the issue, so as we have no directives by the heads of religion to forbid female circumcision, we do not have the right to ban it,” Al-Shami explained

    http://yementimes.com/article.shtml?i=1146&p=local&a=1

  130. Jamie Says:

    “The equation Scott, Communism = Atheism = Relative Morality actually isn’t quite fair, or exact.

    It was, e.g., the Communists who gave atheism a bad name. Buddhists have been known to be atheists long before the forces of Darkness in the form of Communism(with its expedient ‘means justify the ends’ evil) that atheism got automatically tarred. Trust these sorts of perverse atheistic “Progressives” to invert values. ”

    Perhaps you don’t know your Buddhisms. Theravada and Hinayana are quite different. Many Buddhists in Southeast Asia and South Asia believe in a Messianic, godlike figure named Buddha Maitreya, who will bring so much virtue to people that many will enter Nirvana. He will also defeat the arch enemy of the Buddhas without doing anything at all. Does that really count as Atheism? Many Buddhists also pray to various Buddhas. Does that count as Atheism? There are also Buddhas waiting in the heavens outside of earth who made the sacrifice of not attaining Nirvana in order to help other buddhists find the way. They can send help, etc. (just what exactly they do kinda depends on which region you’re in though). Does that sound like Atheism?

  131. wits0 Says:

    According to the dictionary an atheist is someone who denies the existence of god. I believe it generally also meant, a Creator God.

    Oriental ppl have never denied the existence of titulary gods, deities and other beings. But they hardly believed an almighty and (sometimes)petulant overloard Monotheistic G-d. Mahayana Buddhists have their Pantheons of gods, Hinayana, no.

    How could the G-d of Moses be when he said he was a “jealous G-d”? How and why should an almighty God be jealous? That’ll be unworthy and illogical. More likely it was the Elohim(s) speaking to impress upon an ancient and semi-civilized people to better obey the given rules of the day(for their own betterment).

  132. Jamie Says:

    Your definition is a little imprecise and biased against monotheism. Better stated, an atheist is a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings. Thus, Mahayana Buddhists do not qualify as atheists. Only the stricter sects of Buddhism which do not believe in any pantheons qualify.

    “How could the G-d of Moses be when he said he was a “jealous G-d”? How and why should an almighty God be jealous? That’ll be unworthy and illogical. More likely it was the Elohim(s) speaking to impress upon an ancient and semi-civilized people to better obey the given rules of the day(for their own betterment).”

    Your statement is inherently prejudiced against the monotheistic understanding. Is it more unworthy for a supreme, perfect God to want His children to love Him because it will bring them tons and tons of benefits, or for Him to not give a damn about them not following Him and missing out completely on all the perks, protection and success that He says would follow? Your definition of worthy seems to lean more toward an emotionless omnipotent force rather than an omnipotent person (which is what the Judeo-Christian beliefs hold to).

    Also, is it really that likely that God was just trying to get them to better obey the given rules of the day for their own betterment? How come the message never changed over the two thousand odd years in the history of the Israelites then? You must not be aware that the Israelites as a whole turned away to follow the given rules of the surrounding nation states time and time again. Now, if the law of Moses was merely a call to adhere to the given rules of the day, then would the Israelites have turned back to the law of Moses again and again? Why bother, when the given rules of the day are the rules of the Philistines, Moabites, Ammonites, etc? Why bother to hold on so strongly to an ancient, probably “outmoded” set of beliefs compared to the contemporary beliefs practiced by themselves and other civilizations?

    It makes more sense to see the law of Moses as a single, consistent message that is repeated many times throughout the history of the Israelites to turn them to what they saw was the only proper way in life. Then the emergence of various prophets, messengers and judges preaching that message makes sense.

    You automatically assume that they were a semi-civilized people. Whether or not they were semi-civilized or fully civilized is hard to know, so let’s not go into that shall we?

  133. wits0 Says:

    “Thus, Mahayana Buddhists do not qualify as atheists. ”

    They do not believe in a Supreme Being do they? You can’t name one.

    “Your definition of worthy seems to lean more toward an emotionless omnipotent force rather than an omnipotent person (which is what the Judeo-Christian beliefs hold to).”

    An ‘omnipotent person’ would end up with anthropomorphic characteristics, no less and these would be limitation itself by virtue of that cannot ultimately be very transcending.

    “How come the message never changed over the two thousand odd years in the history of the Israelites then? ”

    Oh, they have otherwise you be finding people following the Mosaic laws (of an eye for an eye), the severity of which Jesus had to change and the manner of war which is well documented in many ugly stories in Deuteronomy. If the real ultimate God had given the laws to Moses, why is it that they were so severe and later had to be changed? Nay, it’s far more likely some Elohims were the teachers. The Mosaic Laws became obsolete for they were too harsh and no enduring civilization can prosper long under such unforgiving severity in human relationship.

    I do not assume on the matter of semi-civilized nature of the ancient Israaelites. The Book of Deuteronomy proves it. Rather than deny that there are ugly verses within it(not possible) it’s more realistic to admit that Change for the better is always necessary over a long period of time. The Concept of God Changed and Man has to change along with that.

    God is a Concept and the quality of which will evolve according to the development of the human acuity in perception and increase in knowledge.

  134. Jamie Says:

    Like I said, I can name the coming Buddha who will bring the universe into the golden age of enlightenment and physical expansion: Buddha Maitreya, the most supreme of Buddhas.

    Besides, the definition included belief in “supreme beings” as well as belief in a supreme being. Since there is a pantheon of gods in Buddhism, that would disqualify Buddhism from being atheistic now, wou’dn’t it?

    You really shouldn’t impute your characteristics of what you think should count as God and not God onto the Judeo-Christian beliefs. In the teachings, God is God and He is also a person. Even when referring to just YHWH alone, He is a person.

    I think I was not clear enough when I said the message has not changed. I was referring to the commandment to obey God’s laws and serve Him with all of one’s heart, mind, and strength, and this message is reiterated time and time again, unchangingly, through the various prophets in the Old Testament.

    Then again, if you were to read the books of the prophets carefully, you’d see that the methods of priestly worship and service did not change either. God still commands the Israelites to bring their offerings to Him, and even in the time of Jesus they were still practicing the Mosaic Laws (otherwise, Joseph and Mary wouldn’t have brought two doves as sacrifice, wouldn’t have gone up for the feast, etc). So I think that your point is not particularly good.

    You are committing an error that modern historians would deride you for, I’m afraid. Presentism should really be consigned to the backburner of historical scholarship. You are comparing the civility of the Israelites to modern day standards of civility, are you not? Otherwise, how could you say they were semi-civilized? Compared to contemporary societies in which child sacrifices, ritual harlotry, and other forms of practices were observed, I’d say that they were roughly as civilized as the other societies that existed in their time.

    Historians nowadays do not subscribe to the viewing and critiquing past events through the lens of the vantage point of the future unless there is very very clear and good reason to do so. Even so, they minimize the extent to which they use it. Thus, I would say that it isn’t proper to view the Israelites as semi-civilized.

  135. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Okay, a couple things. When I said the fight against Islam and Christianity occurs similtaneously, I am refering to the fact that the arguments work on both- and that Muslims do… acquire our stupid apologetics. Weaken one and you take down the other.

    Presentism? Jamie, you are denying objective morality… ironically the whole point of Scott’s post. In case you don’t know, I am sure Scott can fill you in. He will probably go with sarcasm-
    “Sure the communists brutally killed millions, but remember, we can’t hold them by our standards. They can from a culture that practiced brutal authoritarianism and obedience and existed and a time when people where more barbaric. I mean they were better than their neighbors- they didn’t set up death camps or do mass bombings!”

    I case you don’t understand why it is bad it is the equilalent of saying- “Oh well, they are savages; what did you expect. We can’t expect the (insert one- blacks, indians, slavs, japanese, asians, celts, etc) to have the same level of morality and sophistication or judge them by our standards.

    Dialogue like that is one of the reasons I hate leftists and progressives.

    As for the atheism, it is a lack of the belief in Gods. Lacks of belief in the supernatural would be naturalism. And you guys keep on noticing the odd contradictions- that is because the Jews didn’t believe in one God- they just worshipped one God. In fact other that is why they cared so much about people worshipping other Gods. I believe it is explictly mentioned in Gods covenant with Isreal- delivering them from Egypt and beating the Egyptian Gods.

  136. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Wow… we appear to have granted this thread immortal life.

  137. wits0 Says:

    No, Jamie, this cannot be right for any civilized people to have to obey:

    “But of the cities of these people, which the Lord thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shall save alive nothing that breatheth: But thou shalt utterly destroy them …”

    – Deuteronomy – 20:16-17

    Granted the enemies of ancient Israel were no more civilized but these….??!! Would animals have sinned so badly?

    WRT Maitreya, the most supreme of Buddhas, that is still not G_d but helps to give a moral boost in terms of faith. Yes all belief-system depends on faith in some degree and the degree makes a lot of difference. As the Seth of Jane Roberts has said, one would not be alive had one not have faith in one’s own being. Not even atheists with Nihilistic proclivity.

  138. wits0 Says:

    Skinner, Christianity has undergone Reformation, Islam has not and will not, as much as it cannot, given the nature of its ethos and politics. It wants nothing to change and that is impossible in an Universe of Change. Inside of evolving, some people expect to make the world submit to its backward rigidity. Therefore it’s not sensible to draw a moral equivalence between the two Monotheitsic faiths.

  139. Scott Thong Says:

    So only the New Testament counts? Why? That doesn’t make sense- if the New one is the word of God, so is the Old one. Am I missing something?

    Because

    1) Jesus came to fulfill the Law, not to abolish it, but He did fulfill it by dying on the cross – so the penalties of the Law no longer apply to us, having been paid in full.

    2) Jesus gave us an example of how we should punish others – “Whoever among you has no sin, he shall throw the first stone!”

    3) Paul reiterates that Jesus freed us from the Law, and now we live by Grace.

    4) Most of the commands in the OT commanding to kill and slaughter are very specific – e.g. Israelite warriors must kill all the ancient Jerichoites, or your Golden Calf example. As I said before, I’m not an Israelite warrior nor are there any ancient Jerichoites left to kill.

    5) Even if Christians had to obey the same laws as the Jews, even they cannot simply go around judging that so-and-so has committed a sin worthy of death – just like how we can’t go around executing drug dealers. That’s the state’s job, and stonings are the Sanhendrin’s job:

    have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?

    You are forbidden to kill him yourself. The death penalty may only be administered by a court of 23 ordained rabbis (see tractate Sanhedrin). Since there are no genuinely ordained rabbis (and won’t be until Elijah returns), no competent court can be convened.Explanation of Jewish laws

  140. Scott Thong Says:

    The equation Scott, Communism = Atheism = Relative Morality actually isn’t quite fair, or exact.

    It was, e.g., the Communists who gave atheism a bad name. Buddhists have been known to be atheists long before the forces of Darkness in the form of Communism.

    Y’know, I do agree. I have no problems with Buddhism, although it is technically atheistic – Buddhists are known to have very high standards of morality. I seldom see them picking a fight with Christians, which is also why I don’t have bash-the-Buddhist posts.

    But unlike humanist atheists, Buddhists get their moral code from the teachings of Buddha, correct? Which would make him the absolute authority on morality and the pursuit of Nirvana.

    So the title of my post would be more accurately rendered, Communism = Humanist Atheism = Kill Anyone Who Doesn’t Agree With You.

  141. Scott Thong Says:

    Okay, a couple things. When I said the fight against Islam and Christianity occurs similtaneously, I am refering to the fact that the arguments work on both- and that Muslims do… acquire our stupid apologetics. Weaken one and you take down the other.

    Arguments against the existence of God may do that, but not arguments against the scripture or philosophy particular to each. Pointing out that Islam commands the conversion or death of all nonbelievers does not have any relevance for Christianity’s ‘love your enemy as yourself’.

    And while a Christian will get all riled up and bash you verbally, the other guy will come over to your house and bash you physically (as proven in France, Spain, Britain, America, Thailand, Indonesia… )

  142. wits0 Says:

    Correction, “InSTEAD” of evolving…”

    The present Pope has said/taught that Catholism is d best ;)

    I can live with that. Naturally, from his point of view. :) He’s a good man of peace and goodwill plus being rather, overall, more clear sighted than the previous ones.

    I’ve recent;y heard a protestant priest attributing natural calamities to the wrath of God and of non believers. That’s his opinion.

  143. wits0 Says:

    Scott, the Buddha’s “absolute authority on morality” is not forced upon anyone. In fact, in the Kalama Sutra, the Buddha was the only One to have declared the charter of intellectual freedom thus:

    Kalama Sutra

    “Rely not on the teacher/person, but on the teaching.
    Rely not on the words of the teaching, but on the spirit of the words.
    Rely not on theory, but on experience.

    Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
    Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
    Do not believe anything because it is spoken and rumored by many.
    Do not believe in anything because it is written in your religious books.
    Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and
    elders.
    But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and the benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

    – the Buddha

  144. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Okay… you just declared all of the Old Testament invalid because… I don’t get it. People still need to live in society and I’m pretty sure all the social rules are in the Old Testament and Talmud. Jesus offered… love everyone? That… sounds like a hippie Scott- I definately am missing something.

    Buddists aren’t all atheists. In addition Buddaha’s teaching are completely unrelated to morality (they just happen to overlap)- they are about reaching enlightenment. Buddism is… weird. I think it is supersticion, but it

    Arguments for the nonexistance of God work equally on both. Scriptural arguments actually work best on Islam- since it claims all the previous prophets, and had less vigorous editting.

    As for Islam being more dangerous than Christianity… that is true. Wheter it is inherent or a result of history is unknown. However Christianity is still a problem- you know, killing gays, letting kids die because prayer beats medicine, blocking sex ed and condoms- seriously what is their problem? Okay, I know that, but still…

  145. Scott Thong Says:

    Okay… you just declared all of the Old Testament invalid because… I don’t get it.

    I definately am missing something.

    Yeah, I think you must be too.

    But why not just look at the simple way to resolve it – separation of church and state.

    Christians may have all sorts of rules that they have to follow, but they aren’t meant to be imposed on nonChristians. The rules for Christian living are all personal matters – such as whether or not we are allowed to watch porn.

    Outside the personal choices sphere, Christians are supposed to obey the secular rule of law according to the nation they live in. That means even if a Christian is really P.Oed over abortion, he isn’t permitted to carry out an arrest, trial and execution himself.

    If the laws of the nation are legally changed to be more in line with Christian beliefs (as once the older laws forbidding homosexual conduct were), then that’s a matter of the secular law changing – not religious law becoming applicable to nonChristians.

    Therefore, whatever a Christian does has to be legal within the secular laws of the nation.

    Here you can see the clear practical difference between Christians and those other guys – when the law says gay marriage is okay, Christians take it to the ballot box in the hope of changing the law. It may be ‘discriminatory’ against homosexuals, but it’s still following legal outlets. The other guys will break out the nail bombs.

    However Christianity is still a problem- you know, killing gays, letting kids die because prayer beats medicine, blocking sex ed and condoms- seriously what is their problem?

    You may be confusing individual choices by Christians with Christianity itself… Gandhi recognized the distinction between the two in his famous quote.

    If Christians really thought killing gays is okay, you think that those ‘bitter’ religious Southerners with their vast arsenals of personal firearms and their Chief Of The Armed Forces Bush would still let that minority of people live?

    I believe that disallowing medicine is the doctrine of the so-called Christian Scientists who are neither true Christians nor very scientific. And it also completely ignores the apostle Luke’s profession as a doctor.

    And letting people die because you rather they didn’t get treatment is not by any means a Christian monopoly – liberal humanist atheists are offing everyone from babies to geriatrics simply because they deem them unfit to be treated.

    The US has been pumping money into sex ed and free condoms for 40 years- and all that’s been achieved is ever-rising teenage STD and teenage pregnancy rates.

    Philosophical preferences aside, shouldn’t the facts and statistics count for something in deciding whether abstinence ignoring sex ed is actually effective?

  146. Jamie Says:

    Samuel Skinner, it appears you don’t understand exactly what presentism and historicism is about. Also, you appear to be unable to conduct a conversation without insulting anyone. Pray tell, did you ever learn manners from your parents?

    Presentism is where present day ideas and perspectives are introduced into depictions or interpretations of the past, anachronistically and unsuitably so. Why historians avoid it is because it creates a distorted understanding of the subject matter. I guess then you indict every scholar of history as being a leftist and post-modernist.

    However, presentism is NOT equal to post-modernism. Post-modernism states that there is no objective truth or reality and that it is all socially constructed. The opposite of presentism, historicism, on the other hand, says that the events in the past should be understood in the CONTEXT of when they occurred. It does not say that there is no objective account of what happened, or that there is no objective truth or standard or whatever. Thus, saying things like “Japan should have known they would have lost when they got the Americans involved in WWII by bombing Pearl harbour and hence they had poor military planning” totally ignores the context of that piece of history, in which America was assisting Allied efforts but not openly, helping to delay/prevent supplies and goods from reaching Japan.

    Another example is how people always say Freud was a great man or a dumbass, depending on their view of psychoanalysis, because he came up with such amazing/retarded theories (again, depending on your view). The historicistic viewpoint takes into account the ideas that were already present at that time that influenced Freud, and also the sources which Freud used to come up with his theory. Thus, it helps people to see that Freud really didn’t come up with the idea on his own just like that in a flash of inspiration. Rather, he also used the ideas and work of his contemporaries and those before him to come up with his theories.

    Presentism is prone to error, politically motivated interpretations and inappropriate/erroneous conclusions. Historicism on the other hand is able to provide a more balanced conclusion on a historical event by taking into account the factors that contributed to why things happened the way they did, but it doesn’t deny the fact that there is truth in what happened.

    Anyway, the term “civilized” changes with each successive advance in civilization, so that’s why I said that it was inappropriate to use semi-civilized when referring to the Israelites.

  147. Jamie Says:

    You contradict yourself, wits0. You state that the people around the Israelites were no more civilized than they were, but the commands could not be right for any civilized people to have to obey. So again, I say you are committing the mistake of injecting presentism into your view of history because if the surrounding states were no better than Israel, then they should all be considered civilized in accordance to their era. Only by imputing the standards of civilization of this age upon them can you conclude that they are semi-civilized.

  148. wits0 Says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Presentism_(literary_and_historical_analysis)

    q/
    Presentism and moral judgments

    Presentism is also related to the problematic question of history and moral judgments. Among historians, the orthodox view may be that reading modern notions of morality into the past is to commit the error of presentism. To avoid this, some historians restrict themselves to describing what happened, and attempt to refrain from using language that passes judgment. For example, when writing history about slavery in an era when the practice was widely accepted, some[weasel words] believe that using language that condemns slavery as “wrong” or “evil” would be presentist, and should be avoided.

    There are many critics of this application of presentism. Some[weasel words] argue that to avoid moral judgments is to practice moral relativism, a controversial idea. Some religious historians[weasel words] argue that morality is timeless, having been established by God, and therefore it is not anachronistic to apply timeless standards to the past. (In this view, while mores may change, morality does not.) Others argue that historians, like all humans, cannot truly be objective, and so moral judgments will always be a part of their work. David Hackett Fischer, for his part, writes that historians cannot avoid making moral judgments, and indeed they ought to make them, but that they should be aware of their biases, and write history in such a way that their biases do not create a distorted depiction of the past. u/q

    I think the Golden Rule of mankind has been known for a very long time, even before recorded history. This is well expressed by Jesus’, “Do unto others as you would others do unto you.” Certainly this must have been already known in Deuteronomical times and that of that of ancient Egypt. Therefore if the people then did not live up to certain of compliance with such a knowledge, but consistently contravened that, they can only be considered uncivilized.

  149. Samuel Skinner Says:

    First off, the amount of unwanted and teen pregnancies are higher in the US than in other countries with sex-ed. So it is a good indication that it works. In addition they have done studies and it turns out abstinence only doesn’t work.

    Um… Nazi Germany legally changed their laws Scott. You just defended relativism. Remember Martin Luther King? People don’t have to obey unjust laws.

    Scott- current problem with your position; fails to work in dictatorships, fails to work if government is immoral, etc.

    To Jamie
    Um… how is something happening in the past any relevance to our moral judgment of it? Come to think of it, all behavior happens in the past- modern behavior is just recent (one second, two second).

    You seem to not understand concepts such as hypocricy, decency and common standards. Here is how they work- when a group of people kill and enslave others, while at the same time praising God for saving them from slavery and cursing those who raid against them, they are being hypocrites. They aren’t treating other people like human beings. It is that simple.

    As for manners- I have nothing for contempt for idiots. The example you gave is a perfect instance- I’m not assuming people in the past had knowledge we had. The Japanese plan to attack Pearl Harbor was perfect;y reasonable- and reprehensible. They conducted an attack before war was declared and the reason they had to strike first was they were invading China! The US was aiding the Nationalist government due to our sympathy for the Chinese and close ties with, the brutality of the invasion (equal to the worst Europe has done) and because they were attacking the colonies of our allies. Japanese behavior was perfectly rational- it haapened to be immoral.

    I’ll put it simpler. For the past 100000 years humans have existed in their current form. They are indistinguishable from us. We can hold them to the same standard we do today. To do otherwise is to imply that they are inferior. “Of course Africans live in dictatorships- we can’t hold them up to the same standards. They are like little children.” Wait- that was the Belgiums… and then they killed a couple million people in Congo. After all, if they can’t make similar moral choices… then they aren’t human are they?

  150. Scott Thong Says:

    First off, the amount of unwanted and teen pregnancies are higher in the US than in other countries with sex-ed. So it is a good indication that it works. In addition they have done studies and it turns out abstinence only doesn’t work.

    I’m sure you mean LOWER in the US, right? And if there are studies that show abstinence only doesn’t work, there are studies which show that safe-sex only doesn’t work either. So why can’t we use both together?

    Um… Nazi Germany legally changed their laws Scott. You just defended relativism. Remember Martin Luther King? People don’t have to obey unjust laws.

    No, you confuse yourself again.

    The laws of some states of the USA may allow gay marriage, and Christians have to respect that, but that doesn’t mean we will ever agree to accept them or declare them moral.

    And who determines whether a law is just or unjust? That’s moral relativism, which is your stance and philosophy, not mine.

    Scott- current problem with your position; fails to work in dictatorships, fails to work if government is immoral, etc.

    Actually, my position works very well from a heaven-oriented viewpoint: Christianity is forbidden by Stalin, Mao or Insert-Islamist-Dictator-Here. Christians refuse to renounce Christ. Christians die as martyrs.

    And more and more people become Christians in a divine irony and paradox. That’s what history has shown thus far.

    “The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.” – Tertullian

    Here is how they work- when a group of people kill and enslave others, while at the same time praising God for saving them from slavery and cursing those who raid against them, they are being hypocrites. They aren’t treating other people like human beings. It is that simple.

    That is how it works from an ignorant, secular viewpoint.

    From an educated, secular viewpoint, the various tribes in Canaan were asked to give peaceful passage to the Israelites so they could just travel on peacefully. The tribes rejected this offer and attacked the Israelites. Who is the aggressor here? The Edomites attacked Israelites for centuries before the Joshua led a counter-offensive.

    From a religious viewpoint, God as the creator and giver of life has the total authority to take it away. It wasn’t the Israelites who decided to kill the Canaanites, it was God.

    Why do you focus so much on the slaughter of the Canaanites, when God killed plenty of people in Sodom and Gomorrah with burning sulphur, every firstborn in Egypt, and almost the entire world with the Great Flood?

    The only difference between those cases and the Israelite campaign is the method of God reclaiming his loan of life – fire or angelic death or water or Israelite death. All of them are still God’s pregorative.

    And if He decides what is right and wrong, not humans (as Christian moral absolutism says), then we really can’t argue.

  151. hutchrun Says:

    `Why do you focus so much on the slaughter of the Canaanites, …`

    What about the greatest genocide in the world (some say 60 million) – that of hindus and buddhists in India by the followers of the book that came 600 years after Christ.

  152. Jamie Says:

    wits0, in that case then every civilization in ancient times should be considered uncivilized/semi-civilized. After all, if they had obeyed the Golden Rule then no wars, invasions and annexations would have occured all around the world now, would they?

    Well then, Samuel Skinner, I can conclude that you are quite an unpleasant fellow. O high and mighty, self-righteous fool, I wish you all the best. God bless you. Oh! You don’t believe in the God I follow? God bless you anyway!

  153. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Because abstinence only and other forms of sex ed are contradictory?

    Scott, you said that you have to obey the law. Even if it is immoral. Which means that Christians who break the law are immoral. Even if the law is wrong!

    No Scott, you are being the moral relativist. You stated that Christians have to obey the laws of the countries they live in- EVEN IF THEY ARE IMMORAL. So if the Nazis ask you to turn over the Jews…

    Umm… no. The blood of Maytars may be the seed of the revolution, but people have shown it works poorly. For example, Albanian completely eradicated religion in their country. Repression works extremely well, especially if it is through enough. The left wing movement in the 1920s was utterly crushed by government repression. Not to mention that if everyone dies as maytars, there is no one to spread the faith. And what if there is a dictator who doesn’t ban Christianity? Like Hitler, Pinochet, Franco… it doesn’t work in those cases. Hitler didn’t ban Christianity- in fact he only cracked down on the Christians who worked against him. And mass conversions due to maytars failed to happen- nationalism was stronger and the secret police were everywhere.

    Hmm… why did they attack? Could it be that the Isrealis were raiding them for supplies? Could it be it was their land the Jews wanted? No- it can’t be because the Bible says so- and the bible was written by the people who are the Good Guys! Given the fact that the Isrealis killed them, enslaved their women and looted their possessions, I’m going with option 1 and 2.

    God decides morality? Scott- you are becoming a relativist- again. What is to stop him from coming out with a new list of instructions you have to obey? You seem to be advocating “Might makes Right”. God is big, powerful and most of all SPECIAL- lets leave of the moral responsibility to him!

    Why do I focus on them? Well, we have had a lot of genocides. Most of them aren’t held up now a days as a holy duty.

    Jamie
    That is the point. The overwhelming majority of people in the past are, for lack of a better term, scum. Are you getting it now?

    Yes, I am an asshole. I hang out with people like you to seem polite by comparison.

    And may the Immortal God Emperor of Man bless you Jamie and forgive your sin of being a self righteous hypocrite. Wait- he isn’t a forgiving type. Oh well- cease and repent.

    Don’t believe in it? It doesn’t matter- reality occurs inspire of belief.

  154. Scott Thong Says:

    Scott, you said that you have to obey the law. Even if it is immoral. Which means that Christians who break the law are immoral. Even if the law is wrong!

    No Scott, you are being the moral relativist. You stated that Christians have to obey the laws of the countries they live in- EVEN IF THEY ARE IMMORAL. So if the Nazis ask you to turn over the Jews…

    Still trying to paint me as a relativist, Skinner? Any Dungeons & Dragons player would immediately know that there is a difference between LAWFUL and GOOD.

    Christians have the option of REFUSING to obey unjust, immoral laws. In exchange, they have to suffer the secular consequences. For example, a Christian photographer recently got sued for refusing to cover a lesbian wedding (it’s against the secular law to discriminate). The photographer would rather be fined or jailed than break God’s moral code.

    Similarly, throughout history the ‘law’ of the nonChristian land forbade Christianity. Christians preferred to be executed or sent to gulags than break God’s moral code.

    And as for handing Jews over to Nazis because it’s the secular law… Ever heard of Corrie ten Boom or the family who hid Anne Frank?

    Umm… no. The blood of Maytars may be the seed of the revolution, but people have shown it works poorly.

    One country is an isolated sample. Christians were persecuted in Rome – the Roman Empire later became officially Christian. Christians were imprisoned by Mao – today China has one of the fastest growing Christian populations.

    Not to mention that if everyone dies as maytars, there is no one to spread the faith.

    There are witnesses to the strong convictions and meek, gentle examples of the martyrs who are inspired by their pacifist stand against tyranny. And don’t tell me pacifism always fails – your beloved Gandhi is proof it can work.

    Hmm… why did they attack? Could it be that the Isrealis were raiding them for supplies? Could it be it was their land the Jews wanted? No- it can’t be because the Bible says so- and the bible was written by the people who are the Good Guys! Given the fact that the Isrealis killed them, enslaved their women and looted their possessions, I’m going with option 1 and 2.

    You really shouldn’t conjecture when you don’t even read the source material. Your timeline is totally off, the Israelites didn’t need supplies (they ate manna) and declared their intention to pass by peacefully, the Edomites had been atatcking the Israelites centuries before Moses was even born.

    God decides morality? Scott- you are becoming a relativist- again. What is to stop him from coming out with a new list of instructions you have to obey? You seem to be advocating “Might makes Right”. God is big, powerful and most of all SPECIAL- lets leave of the moral responsibility to him!

    You’re not getting enough sleep again, Skinner, just like last time.

    God lasts forever – He is absolute. His authority is unquestionable – it is absolute. If I base morality on His commands, then of course that morality is absolute!

    And you obviously have never heard of the fact that God does not change His mind, God is the same yesterday, today and forever, a thousand years is like a day to God, God exists outside time so He knows every moral scenario that could happen… So why do you assume He is a fickle, puny-minded moral relavist like humans?

    I am advocating, CREATOR makes right. He designed this entire universe, you think we know better than Him what real morality is or what works best for our short lives?

    But let me put it in a way you can understand…

    God doesn’t talk face to face. So I can only know His commands through the Bible.

    The Bible hasn’t changed since I last read it. In fact, its contents haven’t changed since at least 1600 years ago, longer for the Old Testament.

    So if I base my morality on a book that doesn’t change, how can you say my morality is relative?

  155. Samuel Skinner Says:

    If you refuse to obey a law… than you aren’t obeying the law. But you said Christians had to obey laws. So Christians can break the laws of their countries now?

    You seem not to get my point. First you claim Christians are different from Muslims because of seperation of church and state. Now you are claiming that Christians can refuse to obey laws based on their religious convictions.

    Albania is the worlds only official atheist state. They achieved that by killing all the religious people they can get their hands on, not mentioning it to the kids and shutting the nation off from the outside world. They succeded. Religion needs freedom to survive- just like any other ideology. In a Stalinist regime it dies. For example North Korea.

    I remember God granting the Isrealitis Isreal. And that people happended to live there. And that the manna was only available in Siana. And that they commited genocide with their victory. You’d think people who were chosen by God would have a higher moral standard.

    But God’s commands change. The Old Testament does not apply to you.

    Creation does not provide moral authority. Remember abortion?

    Realitve morality doesn’t refer to what you base your morality on- it refers to wheter or not it is consistant. It isn’t. God approves of genocide then, but not now. The standards have changed. God gave rules for slavery to the Jews and supported freeing slaves- until the Europeans needed sugar. The words may not change, but their interpretation does. In fact their interpretation now does not resemble anything ever before in human history.

    I’ll tell you what the problem is. Christians base their morality of the bible. The problem is there are as many moralities as there are Christians- although sects tend to be more consistant, doctrine has shifted over time. The same thing occurs with atheists, BUT with atheists who agree on a common moral purpose you CAN get them to subscribe to a common moral code. The code can be defended, explained and most importantly stands on its own due to its purpose and efficiency.

    And they change. You have stated Christians have an obligation to obey the laws of their own country- and can violate the laws if it violates their conscience. Well, if God hates gays, them why is it wrong for fundies to kill them? You don’t show why certain acts (which happen to have secular justification) can be excused from law breaking, but others can’t.

    I know this won’t change your mind. Emperor only knows what your next post will be.

  156. Scott Thong Says:

    If you refuse to obey a law… than you aren’t obeying the law. But you said Christians had to obey laws. So Christians can break the laws of their countries now?

    If they do, they’ll have to accept the punishment for breaking those secular laws. It’s up to each Christian which laws he chooses to follow – God’s eternal, absolute law, or man’s ever-changing, relative law.

    Don’t sound so self-righteous – if the law said you had to snitch out innocent Jews to Hitler, would you? (Gee, wonder where I got that example from…)

    You seem not to get my point. First you claim Christians are different from Muslims because of seperation of church and state. Now you are claiming that Christians can refuse to obey laws based on their religious convictions.

    For Muslim sharia, religion is the state. For Christians, until Jesus returns, we have to put up with secular, godless states.

    The law basically offers each of us a choice – obey, or accept punishment. If we decide to disobey the secular law, we must agree to accept the consequences of disobeying those laws.

    When it comes to accepting state-sponsored atheism or santifying a gay marriage, Christians choose the latter.

    So where’s the problem there?

    Albania is the worlds only official atheist state. They achieved that by killing all the religious people they can get their hands on, not mentioning it to the kids and shutting the nation off from the outside world. They succeded. Religion needs freedom to survive- just like any other ideology. In a Stalinist regime it dies. For example North Korea.

    Take the whole world perspective – killing Christians and burning Bibles has been a 2000 year old hobby of emperors and statesmen. Yet today, there are more (nominal) Christians and Bibles than other religions and books.

    And thanks for admitting how much more repressive and murderous atheists are.

    But God’s commands change. The Old Testament does not apply to you.

    Actually, they do. Every time I sin (and maybe I’m sinning by eating pork), I have to offer a blood sacrifice to atone for those sins, just like the ancient Jews.

    Luckily, Jesus’ blood sacrifice for my sins is still in effect. That’s what Jesus meant when He said “I came not to abolish the Law, but to fulfill it.”

    Creation does not provide moral authority. Remember abortion?

    I do, but it seems you’ve forgotten the many comments I posted on this page about ‘Thou shall not kill’ and ‘God formed me in the womb’.

    Realitve morality doesn’t refer to what you base your morality on- it refers to wheter or not it is consistant. It isn’t. God approves of genocide then, but not now. The standards have changed. God gave rules for slavery to the Jews and supported freeing slaves- until the Europeans needed sugar. The words may not change, but their interpretation does. In fact their interpretation now does not resemble anything ever before in human history.

    Same old argument, so here’s the same old reply: Just because a Christian decides God’s law says something different, doesn’t mean God Himself has changed His tune.

    If I interpret the Constitution to mean I can kill people who try and take away my guns… Does that mean the Constitution has changed?

    We’re fallible humans. We can’t be 100% certain that we’re following what God intends with His moral code. But that doesn’t affect whether God Himself has an absolute moral code.

    I’ll tell you what the problem is. Christians base their morality of the bible. The problem is there are as many moralities as there are Christians- although sects tend to be more consistant, doctrine has shifted over time. The same thing occurs with atheists, BUT with atheists who agree on a common moral purpose you CAN get them to subscribe to a common moral code. The code can be defended, explained and most importantly stands on its own due to its purpose and efficiency.

    So Christians base their morality on an interpretation of words from an everlasting, unchanging God. What do atheists base their morality on? Their current whims.

    You can argue that the atheists’ method is better, but you can’t in any way claim it is absolute when it can change with the next MTV music video.

    And they change. You have stated Christians have an obligation to obey the laws of their own country- and can violate the laws if it violates their conscience. Well, if God hates gays, them why is it wrong for fundies to kill them? You don’t show why certain acts (which happen to have secular justification) can be excused from law breaking, but others can’t.

    You really show your ignorance and shallowness here.

    Where in the Bible does it say ‘God hates gays’? I’ve only ever seen it on placards carried by protestors – you take philosophy lessons from wooden signboards now?

    God hates no man – He only hates the sin, but His love for mankind is so great, He even sent Jesus to die in our place.

    Besides, pre-Christ Israelites living in the Jewish kingdom in Canaan under Mosaic laws were supposed to kill gays – but I’m not a pre-Christ Israelite. I’m supposed to show them Christ’s godly love and lead them to accept His forgiveness and change their ways.

    Christians have an obligation to obey the secular laws of their country, but their first and foremost loyalty is always to God. I thought you would know that by now.

    If a secular law fits the moral framework of God (e.g. no robbing old ladies), then fine – we obey it. But if it does not fit (e.g. you must abort deformed babies), then we refuse to obey it. And then we suffer the consequences for choosing not to do what that immoral law says.

    That’s the simplest criteria for judging whether a Christian should do what a secular law says, or choose to undergo its punishment instead – does it follow God’s truly moral code or not?

  157. Samuel Skinner Says:

    So you can break the law, as long as you get punished? Great- you feel free to kill abortion doctors and become a maytar afterward. And yes, that is a real example. I know- it isn’t “common” because you know that living up to your principles is hard when they are impossible.

    I don’t believe in obeying immoral laws. I think I’ve made that pretty clear.

    So Christians can’t form a religious state- but they can chose wheter or not the laws apply to them… just like Muslims. And for the same reason too!

    Actually the former. Gay marriage is still not legal nation wide- mostly in the liberal locales on the coast.

    No- Christianity has only been oppresed on and off by the Romans untl=il Constantine. Then they were home free. Also, Islam is the worlds fastest growing religion. My point was that a suffiently authoritarian government CAN eliminate religion. For the record, I don’t advocate such a state.

    Great, you believe in human sacrifice. I guess the Aztecs weren’t evil- they just hadn’t heard that the Semites had provided a big enough sacrifice!

    So… God gets credit for everything. And nobody else counts as creating-ever. In other words you have set up a special category and denied anyone can judge it- and all this by fiat.

    Well Scott if God’s law stays the same, but the interpretation changes, why should I believe that you are following it now? How do you know God has an absolute moral code- after all, you can have an unchanging relativist moral code.

    Actually I base my morality on reality. It hasn’t changed in 13.4 billion years. Heck, you can set your clock to it! More specifically I set it to people- got 100000 years on them. You have what- 6000 years for your “eternal word”?

    Becuase it refers to sodomy as an abomination and advocates stoning. Apparently God had a good reason then- but doesn’t know…. okay my relativism alarm is going off. Can’t you see it? NO?!? Okay, here is the deal- the only reason you aren’t killing gays is because… you aren’t Jewish- and it is illegal…. i know, I know “the past”- what ever happened to unchanging moral law.

    Here- lets compare.
    Me
    Gays- what is the problem? Heard of “people are different?”

    You
    Gays- stone if pre-Christ Isreali
    OR if legal
    otherwise, don’t stone

  158. Scott Thong Says:

    So you can break the law, as long as you get punished? Great- you feel free to kill abortion doctors and become a maytar afterward. And yes, that is a real example. I know- it isn’t “common” because you know that living up to your principles is hard when they are impossible.

    You put up a straw man again. Killing an abortion doctor is against the moral code of God, so a Christian who does that both breaks the secular law and God’s law.

    As for real example, you must mean one of the seven murders that occured over 35 years. Wow, those Christofanatics sure are efficient in their fascist genocide.

    My point was that a suffiently authoritarian government CAN eliminate religion. For the record, I don’t advocate such a state.

    I agree with you, with the disclaimer: It can eliminate public and open displays of religion.

    Great, you believe in human sacrifice. I guess the Aztecs weren’t evil- they just hadn’t heard that the Semites had provided a big enough sacrifice!

    What did you think all these years Christ died and came back to life for? To collect on some life insurance scam? The Aztecs are still evil by my book as they killed unwilling victims, whereas Christ surrendered Himself to God’s will willingly.

    Sleep time, Skinner – it prevents the ramblings.

    So… God gets credit for everything. And nobody else counts as creating-ever. In other words you have set up a special category and denied anyone can judge it- and all this by fiat.

    You misspelled the last word. It is spelled fact. That fixes your sentence right up.

    Well Scott if God’s law stays the same, but the interpretation changes, why should I believe that you are following it now? How do you know God has an absolute moral code- after all, you can have an unchanging relativist moral code.

    I’m doing my bestest to follow it, and when I die and meet Jesus, I’ll know if I got it right or Joe over there did.

    Actually I base my morality on reality. It hasn’t changed in 13.4 billion years. Heck, you can set your clock to it! More specifically I set it to people- got 100000 years on them. You have what- 6000 years for your “eternal word”?

    Lol! This has to be your weakest argument yet, and that’s saying something!

    Unchanging reality of human society? So killing other tribes off to steal their stone tools and fur is morally correct even today? And gays must be outcast from society as they have been for millenia in various traditional societies?

    You love to cherry pick don’t you? If you assume that we religious nuts take a 2000-year old book to be historical fact, you should also assume we consider God’s laws to have existed for all time, and even before time was created in the Big Bang.

    Becuase it refers to sodomy as an abomination and advocates stoning. Apparently God had a good reason then- but doesn’t know…. okay my relativism alarm is going off. Can’t you see it? NO?!?

    Let me put it this way…

    According to God in the Old Testament, is it moral to have gay sex? No. What is the punishment for gay sex? Stoning till death.

    According to God in the New Testament, is it moral to have gay sex? No. What is the punishment for gay sex? Exclusion from the church of believers and whatever the secular laws prescribe as punishment.

    So has the morality of gay sex changed at all? No. Nothing has changed about the morality of homosexuality.

    The specific punishment for that has changed, but whether 1000 B.C. or 2000 A.D., Christians still see it as immoral.

    I’m beginning to suspect your confusion is over whether specific punishments change over time – that would be relevant if I were claiming absolute legalities instead of absolute morality. Get that cleared up.

  159. hutchrun Says:

    I guess the Aztecs weren’t evil- they just hadn’t heard that the Semites had provided a big enough sacrifice! – Samuel Skinner
    YAWN!

    “Without perpetual war against the infidels, without Jihad, Islam has no driving purpose.”

    Cortez and his Spanish soldiers who conquered the Aztecs are known to
    history as Conquistadors. That label of Conquerors was applied to them
    by their contemporaries — but it originated a generation earlier. It
    was first used to describe the Spaniards who liberated their own
    country from Islam.
    [ ]
    The deeper parallel is this: both the Arabs and the Aztecs invented a
    Religion of Jihad as a rationale to justify their imperialist empires.

    For the Aztecs, war was their purpose for existence, the sacred
    manifestation of their religion. War for the Aztecs was always Holy
    War.
    [ ]
    In 1487, to celebrate the completion of the Great Temple of
    Huitzilopotchtli in the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan, 20,000
    prisoners were sacrificed in fourteen days, with long lines of victims
    stretching from the temple in four directions as far as the eye could
    see.

    It was decreed that other gods were perpetually hungry. Tlaloc, the
    rain god, needed the hearts of children and babies so that it would
    rain. Xipe, the plant god, needed human skins acquired by skinning a
    victim alive, so that plants would grow.

    Naturally, the tens of thousands of victims needed annually for these
    cosmic sacrifices could not come from the Aztec people, or else they
    would quickly kill themselves off. The only way to get them was to
    capture them as prisoners of war.

    Thus war — Holy War — became the purpose of the Aztec State. All
    soldiers in the Aztec Army were Holy Warriors, Warriors of the Gods.
    Peace was dangerous. No war meant no prisoners to sacrifice, no food
    for the gods, which risked the destruction of mankind and the universe
    itself. The only way to avoid cosmic disaster was for the Aztecs to
    accept the burden fate had given them and wage perpetual war for the
    salvation of humanity.

    … Sounds like they were taking religion-inventing lessons from the Arabs.

    http://www.groupsrv.com/religion/about46518.html

  160. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Well Scott, as you said, most people aren’t true Christians. Needless to say you expect incidents caused by true Christians to be low.

    Nope- the Albanian government eliminated ALL religion. It is creeping back in after the fall of communism, but only from the outside- and only for a small minority. Their brutal Stalinist tactics worked. Same with North Korea.

    It is still blood sacrifice Scott. Blood sacrifice refers to killing someone to gain a benefit that can only be achieved by death and slaughter.

    No, fiat is correct. God creates morality and gets credit for everything because God says so. The only reason you do anything is to obey his will. You know, Stalin is looking like a libertarian now.

    Or you will burn in Hell for not following it correctly. After all, you don’t know for certain if you get salvation- the way is supposed to be through Christ, but if you don’t follow the mans rules…

    I’m not saying that I follow tribal morality (if it helps the tribe good- foreigners are bad, etc.) I’m saying my morality is grounded in PEOPLE. Human beings make a great grounding for morality.

    Here is the problem Scott. Murder is wrong… and yet murder was required. The punishment might have changed, but the original punishment was immoral BY YOUR OWN STANDARDS! I’ll add more later.

  161. Scott Thong Says:

    It is still blood sacrifice Scott. Blood sacrifice refers to killing someone to gain a benefit that can only be achieved by death and slaughter.

    I don’t disagree, as the whole system of Old Testament sacrifice was based on blood.

    But it would more accurately be called ‘atonement’ than benefit – basically, the OT animal or the NT Christ takes the death penalty instead of us who did the crimes.

    No, fiat is correct. God creates morality and gets credit for everything because God says so. The only reason you do anything is to obey his will. You know, Stalin is looking like a libertarian now.

    Well, DUH, if God created everything and someone else took credit for that, wouldn’t that be piracy?

    Btw, Stalin didn’t create the tens of millions of lives he took.

    I’m not saying that I follow tribal morality (if it helps the tribe good- foreigners are bad, etc.) I’m saying my morality is grounded in PEOPLE. Human beings make a great grounding for morality.

    No argument there, that’s de facto moral relativist.

    Here is the problem Scott. Murder is wrong… and yet murder was required. The punishment might have changed, but the original punishment was immoral BY YOUR OWN STANDARDS! I’ll add more later.

    ?????

    If you mean punishment of death for major sins in the Israelite community, such as stoning for adultery, then it is not murder because God as the creator and owner of life decreed it be done.

    Compare it to the lethal injection for a serial killer after jury deliberation – is that murder, or lawful execution?

    Or compare it to the Great Flood of Noah – does that count as God murdering the entire world that He gave life to in the first place?

    If not, replace ‘flood’ with ‘capital punishment’ and you’ll see why Mosaic death sentences were not murder.

  162. hutchrun Says:

    Say guys how about this new religion of climate change? The prophet Al Gore whinnied on gobal warming and end of the world, seas rising blah blah so rushing the world on to bio fuels sparking the food crisis where many will die.

  163. wits0 Says:

    Everything on Earth changes, guys:

    “The speed of light, one of the most sacrosanct of the universal physical constants, may have been lower as recently as two billion years ago – and not in some far corner of the universe, but right here on Earth…”

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn6092.html

    Gore will change comparative fast in due time and people will soon find him with as much impact as those old classic DC comics with their entertaining message of doom.

  164. Samuel Skinner Says:

    I believe you are wrong wits0. That data hasn’t been verified- I doubt it is true. Fundamental laws do not, in fact change- c is related to a host of other equations- if it changes reality… flexes with it.

    But back to Scott and his warped morality. First, defending my own. Scott seems to think that grounding morality in people is relativist. Given that morality is grounded in helping people I don’t know what the heck is his system. Maybe winning brownie points for the afterlife.

    As always got to remind you I am an atheist and hence know grounding morality in God is a bad idea.

    And then we get to your God. You are a relativist Scott. You may be consistant Scott, but that doesn’t change the fact you are a relativist. Why? Things are good if God says they are good appears to be your belief. Now, what is wrong with that? Well, as you have shown quite well, it is objectvely evil. The reason the communists are bad, according to you, isn’t that they killed people- it is that they didn’t have permission! If God had okayed their actions they would have been fine.

    I’d go on, but it is quite obvious you aren’t getting it- I am repeating myself.

  165. wits0 Says:

    “You are a relativist Scott”

    I thought you made him sound like an “absolutist” over the grounding of morality via his religious belief! ;)

    Change is the Nature of existence and phenomenal existence is impossible without change. Space and Time not exempted.

  166. Simon Thong Says:

    samuel skinner, arguing for the sake of arguing can be fun, so I hope you’re having fun playing around with words, cos that’s about all you’re doing, and not doing a good job of it either. I’ve been following this debate, and like witsO, I think that you’ve made Scott sound like an “absolutist”, yet you accuse him of being relativist. The semantics of the English language seem to elude you.

  167. Samuel Skinner Says:

    No, no. A relativist is a person who has no grounding for their moral belief and can justify everything.

    I’ll explain it simply. Scott has declared that God gets to determine what is good. This means there is no absolute standard of good. Therefore Scott is a relativist.

    Now, you might argue that God can make anything good, but then that would be limiting his power. More importantly, if there is a standard that God uses, it can be found independantly, in which case all of Scott’s arguments are pointless- after all it means atheists can be moral too!

    I know it sounds like semantics and going round and round, but that is because this issue was resolved 2500 years ago by the Greeks. Look it up in intro to philosophy if you want.

  168. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Sorry- should be anything. For example genocide, torture, discrimination on things that aren’t a persons fault, atrocities, crimes against humanity and, of course, screwing with people in such a way that drives them nuts.

  169. Billards Champ Says:

    Just so long as you remember that not all communists are atheists and not all atheists are communists, then you will be just fine Scott my man.

    To claim otherwise would be to say something like: “all religious fundamentalists are terrorists and all terrorists are religious fundamentalists”. Obviously tosh. Just the prevalence of terrorism based on religion moves people to accept that as the norm.

  170. hutchrun Says:

    `..not all communists are atheists..`

    Huh, I thought that was a mainstay of `Communism`, but I would agree that not all socialists are atheists.

  171. hutchrun Says:

    Saw this at Robert spencer`s and worth a note:

    Remember this the next time someone says, “The Bible is violent, too”-

    “Wherever you see a man who gives someone else’s corruption, someone else’s prejudice as a reason for not taking action himself, you see a cog in The Machine that governs us.” — John Jay Chapman

  172. Jamie Says:

    “As always got to remind you I am an atheist and hence know grounding morality in God is a bad idea.”

    Hahaha so funny. He claims to ‘know’ that that is a bad idea, when in fact he only ‘believes’ that. Self-deception anyone?

    Samuel Skinner = FAIL

  173. Scott Thong Says:

    But back to Scott and his warped morality. First, defending my own. Scott seems to think that grounding morality in people is relativist. Given that morality is grounded in helping people I don’t know what the heck is his system. Maybe winning brownie points for the afterlife.

    As always got to remind you I am an atheist and hence know grounding morality in God is a bad idea.

    The reason the communists are bad, according to you, isn’t that they killed people- it is that they didn’t have permission! If God had okayed their actions they would have been fine.

    For the sake of argument, for this comment alone I will admit that morality based on people is good and morality based on God is bad.

    Morality based on people is till relativist.

    Thank you.

  174. Simon Thong Says:

    ..this issue was resolved 2500 years ago by the Greek – samuel skinner. Show me, and show me how this relates to your point.

  175. wits0 Says:

    Simon Thong: “Morality based on people is still relativist.”

    Of course it is. There are all sorts of people around too. Like the unsavory Christians like Scott and the weird Buddhists, e.g. LOL!

    Which section of humanity and from which human beings do we find the true authoritatively convincing good values to live by?

  176. Simon Thong Says:

    Witso, “Morality based on people is still relativist”: are you telling me this, or am I supposed to have said this? Please clarify.

    As for there being all sorts of people around, that is right. You would be one, and so would I. Yet to categorise Scott as an example of “unsavoury Christians” is a direct attack on his person, which is not really on in my books.
    Stick to the subject.

    “Weird Buddhists”? That’s a biased and subjective statement. Ethnocentric, too. I’m not a buddhist but I don’t find them weird at all? Different? Yes.

  177. wits0 Says:

    Simon, I said them sarcastically, mimicking some one else who implicitly called others so.

    Look at post modernism. Has it any “morality”? Only fools’ relativity.

  178. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Okay… it continues. The example from 2500 years ago is the Euthyphro dilemma, found in Plato’s dialogue Euthyphro. Check it out.

    As for why grounding morality on God is bad… check out Vox Day. Scott has openly admited that the only reason he won’t kill babies if God commands it is because he has a conscience which he claims is from God. Vox is free from such constraints- his conscience tells him to obey God.

    Uh… how is morality based on people relativist? I can judge them- I don’t hold nuts as being worth as much as sane people- so that clears up your straw man.

    Scott technically is delusional- he can’t give an objective reason why Vox Day is wrong. Buddist are weird because they believe something about the universe which is backed by no evidence what so ever. Simple reasoning really.

    Special note to Jamie- Vox Day shows me the end point for basing morality ENTIRELY on God. I don’t need and never will use belief when I have such a clear example.

    Note to Scott
    Basing morality on people is hard. After all you can find situations that you can get a person to commit all manner of immoral acts in real life for the greater good (aka- kill this person or I’ll kill all these people). The easiest way to deal with such problems is by pointing out A) they are unlikely to occur in real life, B) they are probably a trick or the best answer C) the pragmatist solution- refuse to go through with it, even if it gives a worse result because overall it will get better results. For example: banning people from giving ransom payments so that kiddnapping for money is pointless.

    Sorry- had to cover exceptions and extreme cases first. Now onto morality itself. Morality is basically about doing good, where good is helping other people. Origionally it started out as the method to get ahead- but of course people now have the desire harcoded into most of their brains. Anyway I’m sure if you can figure it out from there. If not, say so- it is my blind spot after all- not understanding how others think very well means I’m unable to give instructions on how to think.

    And, before you ask, there is no reason to be good except out of an innate desire or fear of punishment… even under theism. Theism simply has a worse punishment and a transfered innate desire- instead of helping people it is all about the concept of good…which tends to be divorced from what it is actually about. Oh, and if you say “than why should I be moral”, I’d like to remind you the whole “fear of punishment”. Punishment- keeping complete psychos in check. Seriously- in the UK they have cameras everywhere and the idea is spreading.

    On a lighter note, you probably could get away with doing as little as possible and being a complete slacker and bum, but that would reduce your possibility of finding a mate and passing your genes onto the next generation, eventually removing complete assholes from the gene pool… well, maybe not, but you can hope, can’t you?

  179. Scott Thong Says:

    I’ll explain it simply. Scott has declared that God gets to determine what is good. This means there is no absolute standard of good. Therefore Scott is a relativist.

    What alternate dimension Bizarro World logic are you using here?!! According to your irational unreasoning:

    Timeless, eternal, unchanging, same yesterday today and forever God as the source of morality = Moral relativism

    Live for 80-odd years humans who follow the trends of the fleeting culture they live in as the source of morality = Moral absolutism

    WTF????!!!!

    As for why grounding morality on God is bad… check out Vox Day. Scott has openly admited that the only reason he won’t kill babies if God commands it is because he has a conscience which he claims is from God. Vox is free from such constraints- his conscience tells him to obey God.

    I won’t lose to this Vox person! Whatever God says, I will do! It is infinitely better than doing whatever humans tell me to… See below for explanation why.

    Scott technically is delusional- he can’t give an objective reason why Vox Day is wrong.

    But why am I delusional if I simply accept that when I can’t give an objective reason why something is wrong, therefore it is right?

    Note to Scott
    Basing morality on people is hard. After all you can find situations that you can get a person to commit all manner of immoral acts in real life for the greater good (aka- kill this person or I’ll kill all these people). The easiest way to deal with such problems is by pointing out A) they are unlikely to occur in real life, B) they are probably a trick or the best answer C) the pragmatist solution- refuse to go through with it, even if it gives a worse result because overall it will get better results.

    100 million have already died from your ‘unlikely’ chance of happening. Thousands of babies are murdered every single day as well.

    Heck, using your criteria, I could similarly argue for theistic-based morality!

    Morality is basically about doing good, where good is helping other people.

    Skinner, you say that you base your morality on ever-changing humanity and yet somehow claim it is absolute.

    Let me ask, which human decides what is moral? Nietzche? Stalin? Guevara? Yourself?

    Use your own example C. What if 67% of the humanists in the world decided that all disabled people must be euthanized in order to better society as a whole?

    RELATIVISM.

  180. hutchrun Says:

    `What if 67% of the humanists in the world decided that all disabled people must be euthanized in order to better society as a whole? ` – Scott

    Actually there are many who already say that there are too many people in the world now, using up resources (more recently Ted Turner). The inference being that all these excess should be `put to sleep` for the survival of the human race.

  181. Simon Thong Says:

    Oic, the Euthyphro dilemma..and I thought you meant something else cos you said “and the Greeks RESOLVED it 2500 years ago” (bold type are mine). No, it was not resolved but raised issues that philosophers still have to come to grips with in Ethics. Precision in language is important, if not everything!

  182. Simon Thong Says:

    correction: word in bold type is mine

  183. Jamie Says:

    Again I say to you Samuel Skinner, you only ‘believe’ that, you do not ‘know’ that. It’s just what you ‘perceive’.

    Samuel Skinner = FAIL

  184. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Wow… I’ll go over a couple things- I’m strapped for time.

    First of, Jamie is an idiot- I think we can all agree on that. I am going to ignore himbecause he hasn’t really said anything.

    Simon- the dilemna shows that ethics must be independent of religion. Look it over if you wish, but that is one of the inescapable conclusions.

    As for Scott… you don’t understand what moral relativism means. I’ll explain. Moral relativism isn’t morals that change- although morality that changes fit under it. Moral relativism is morality that can be used to justify ANYTHING!

    That would be your beliefs. Vox, for your information basically declared if God said to do it he would do it. This is the epitomy of moral relativism. There is no objective standard. You might say God is the objective standard, but here is the problem- God doesn’t exist. In this vaccum… well, people put in their own voices, their own minds… their own desires. It is subjective and relative morality, with some using logic, some using emotion and some using reading to guide them.

    As for “ever changing humanity” people have been constant for the last 100000 years. Morality has been constant to. People just haven’t lived up to it. How do we find morality- how do we discover it? By its purpose- making people happier, making their lives better and not getting them killed.

    You have forgotten morality has a purpose Scott. Morality isn’t like beauty or art- you can see what works in reality. Surprisingly enough genocide doesn’t make people happy or better off.

    I’d say more, but I’ll give you time to distort my statements. Happy hunting!

  185. Scott Thong Says:

    First of, Jamie is an idiot- I think we can all agree on that. I am going to ignore himbecause he hasn’t really said anything.

    It seems that you are the only one here who thinks that, Skinner. I believe the term for what he is doing to you is ‘mocking’.

    As for Scott… you don’t understand what moral relativism means. I’ll explain. Moral relativism isn’t morals that change- although morality that changes fit under it. Moral relativism is morality that can be used to justify ANYTHING!

    No wonder we haven’t been seeing eye to eye on this and keep going on back and forth – you and I have completely disparate definitions!

    I have Wikipedia: In philosophy moral relativism is the position that moral or ethical propositions do not reflect objective and/or universal moral truths, but instead make claims relative to social, cultural, historical or personal circumstances.

    And a dedicated website: Moral relativism is the view that ethical standards, morality, and positions of right or wrong are culturally based and therefore subject to a person’s individual choice. We can all decide what is right for ourselves. You decide what’s right for you, and I’ll decide what’s right for me. Moral relativism says, “It’s true for me, if I believe it.”

    And even Urban Dictionary:A worldview common in the West (but held by very few philosophers) which people arive at after very little actual thought. Consists of the notion that there is no single objective truth, and that no one can say anything is true. Ironically, no one who adheres to relativism can say that relativism is true.

    That is, relative morality is decided by whichever fickle human decides it to be at the time.

    What do you have except your own single, solitary, lonely opinion?

    Using the above criteria, anyone should know that Christians are not free to ‘decide what is right for yourself’ – which is why such things as heresy, excommunication, shunning and eternal damnation exist.

    And how is ‘anything’ justified under strictly by-the-book Christianity, where we can’t just change the moral rules to make them more politically correct?

    Technically God can decide anything He likes, like making being alive immoral. But practically, His rules are all written down in the laws of physics, the Bible, and the laws of morality.

    Moral absolutism.

    That would be your beliefs. Vox, for your information basically declared if God said to do it he would do it. This is the epitomy of moral relativism. There is no objective standard. You might say God is the objective standard, but here is the problem- God doesn’t exist. In this vaccum… well, people put in their own voices, their own minds… their own desires. It is subjective and relative morality, with some using logic, some using emotion and some using reading to guide them.

    Three problems with that synopsis.

    One, you assume that God doesn’t exist from the get-go.

    Two, you forget that the Bible does provably exist and is shown to be the same as it was at least 1000 and even 2000 years ago. Christians base their morals on a unchanging book, how is that more relativist than basing morality on the very recent Karl Marx or Mao’s Red Book?

    Three, the God of the Christians is ever unchanging. He existed before time, why should He be affected by its flow?

    As for “ever changing humanity” people have been constant for the last 100000 years. Morality has been constant to. People just haven’t lived up to it. How do we find morality- how do we discover it? By its purpose- making people happier, making their lives better and not getting them killed.

    You avoid the question and the problem again: WHO decides what is the best way to achieve the purpose of making people happier? WHO decides the definition and measurement of ‘happy’?

    Is it worth killing 100 million people if it will result in the world’s 6 billion becoming happy and contented for the rest of history? Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot thought so.

    People have been constant for 100,000 years? Then how come it is only recently, in the last 0.1% of all human history (by your reckoning), that things like homosexuality and equal civic rights are permissible? Or did they not lead to ‘human happiness’ before the 19th century?

  186. Scott Thong Says:

    Or perhaps I should illustrate the God-creator-and-designer-of-everything Christian definition of morality in simple step-by-step format like this:

    God is, by definition, the epitome of pure good.

    Going against God is sin.

    Sin is therefore going against good, which is immoral.

    Therefore, going against God is immoral.

    (As opposed to, say, going against Stalin or Samuel Skinner.)

  187. Jamie Says:

    Like I said, Samuel Skinner, you ‘think’ and ‘believe’ that what you are saying is right, but you even have the definition of moral relativism wrong.

    Samuel Skinner = FAIL

  188. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Jamie keeps on saying “FAIL” because he says that I have everything wrong. Traditionally when you do that it is considered polite to say WHY. You now, why I am wrong. I don’t care if I am wrong as long as I know why.

    Uh huh. You seem not to realize what the current state of Christianity is Scott. In my country when people don’t like their churches stance they change churches. Definitely relativist. In fact, the church may claim to be absolutist, but individuals choose which one to obey- I can’t see how this is anything other than relativism.

    Also, I don’t “assume” God doesn’t exist. He doesn’t- and you can prove it rather easily. Similar proofs exist for Santa and the Easter Bunny, if so desired.

    The bible is also not the same. The standard bible- King James- was compiled in 1600s. The only one that is the same is the origional- but that is redundant.

    I’m not a communist Scott.

    Because God’s commands change? Notice that he does the whole “Jesus died for sins”- why didn’t he start of with it? Obviously he must be effected by time.

    So it is immoral to go against good people Scott? Don’t you know that almost everyone considers them self a good person? We know God is good from the bible… which he ordered written. Opps.

    A point I want to make is that part of what I consider relativism (and which fits into the definition) is when a moral code can give multiple different answers for the same situation. Wait… that is relativism because it is resolved using culture and individual conscience. So my thrust is still good. Because people can look at the bible, reach totally different conclusions AND there is no way way to prove which one is right and which one is wrong! I know Scott is going to say study the bible… except that people do and still reach such results.

    As for genocide- Scott their reasons where to advance communism. Communism is less rational than religion. It is insane. So if you die or kill someone please check you know what the heck you are doing… otherwise you’ll get their results (people are complaining about the killings… we have to kill them). It spirals out of control fast.

    The reason equality is recent is because people are selfish bastards. Well, there is more to it, but the fact that people don’t act morally all the time doesn’t change the fact that something is moral.

  189. Jamie Says:

    Hahaha Samuel Skinner, why do you want me to be polite? I thought that I was considered as worse than an asshole by you?

    Inconsistent. Lol.

    Samuel Skinner = FAIL

  190. hutchrun Says:

    In defence of Skinner:
    `You seem not to realize what the current state of Christianity is Scott.`

    That`s kinda true e.g. that Rev. Wright of Obama fame is one good testimonial.

    `The bible is also not the same. The standard bible- King James- was compiled in 1600s.`

    The translation has robbed it of much of its original meaning and people take it too literally:

    At long last, I think we’re in a position to answer these difficulties. Having seen the connection of this story to that of Adam naming and rejecting the animals; having defined our choice to partake of the forbidden fruit as a trial that asked us to understand why really an animal could never be our soul-mate; having seen the subjectivity that lurks both in “da’at”, the internal, experiential kind of knowledge, and in “tov and ra”, the Brave New World of looking at right and wrong; having seen all this — we are finally in a position, I think, to understand more deeply the aftershocks of eating from the Tree: God’s strange question “Where are You”; Adam’s intense focus upon, and fear of, nakedness; and the Almighty’s seemingly random imposition of punishments.
    aish.com/literacy/exploring/The_I_of_the_Beholder_Serpents_of_Desire3_Part_9.asp

  191. Scott Thong Says:

    Uh huh. You seem not to realize what the current state of Christianity is Scott. In my country when people don’t like their churches stance they change churches. Definitely relativist. In fact, the church may claim to be absolutist, but individuals choose which one to obey- I can’t see how this is anything other than relativism.

    1) Is there anything different about the church’s morality, or do they just change it because of the pastor’s style, the worship music, personality clashes with other churchgoers?

    2) How does that make God wishy-washy and prone to changing His moral standard?

    3) How is humanist atheism any better and more absolutist? You don’t even have a guidebook to use, let alone the purported eternal word of the immortal God.

    Also, I don’t “assume” God doesn’t exist. He doesn’t- and you can prove it rather easily. Similar proofs exist for Santa and the Easter Bunny, if so desired.

    That Santa Claus does not exist in either the North or South pole is easy to prove. That God does not exist is practically impossible.

    Treatment at I am an A-atheist (Because Atheism is an Unproveable Faith).

    If you can PROVE God does not exist, congratulations – you are God!

    The bible is also not the same. The standard bible- King James- was compiled in 1600s. The only one that is the same is the origional- but that is redundant.

    Your standarad and depth of historical knowlegde is appaling.

    We still have the millenia old manuscripts in the original Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek to look at and translate again – which is what the New International Version is all about. Compare the Dead Sea Scrolls copy of Isaiah from 100~300 BCE – it has 99.5% the same contents as today’s 2008 English versions.

    I’m not a communist Scott.

    And I’m not a witchhunter, Crusader, inquisitor or bronze-age Israelite warrior, but you keep comparing me to them.

    In any case, Communists were officially de facto atheists. Especially their leaders.

    So it is immoral to go against good people Scott? Don’t you know that almost everyone considers them self a good person? We know God is good from the bible… which he ordered written. Opps.

    Yes, everyone considers themselves good. Hitler, Stalin, Mao, the Hale-Bopp suicide cult leader… To their own mind, everything they did was for the greater good.

    And if an absolute, never-changing, undebatable standard of ABSOLUTE morality does not exist, we cannot say that what they did was bad.

    Because people can look at the bible, reach totally different conclusions AND there is no way way to prove which one is right and which one is wrong! I know Scott is going to say study the bible… except that people do and still reach such results.

    Again, how people interpret God’s word in the Bible does not in any way affect what the Bible actually says.

    If I interpret the Fifth Ammendment to mean that I am not allowed to speak at all, while everyone else interprets it to mean that you just don’t need to say self-incriminating things in court, does that mean the US Constitution is ever-changing? By your logic that you apply to God’s word, yes.

    As for genocide- Scott their reasons where to advance communism. Communism is less rational than religion. It is insane. So if you die or kill someone please check you know what the heck you are doing.

    Christianity + Politics = Crusades
    Atheism + Politics = Communism

    So why are the Crusades fair game as ‘representative of Christianity’ but not Communists of atheism?

    After all, one could say that Communism was used as a vehicle to promote humanist atheist ‘man is god’ values just as the Crusades were used to spread Christianity by the sword.

    but the fact that people don’t act morally all the time doesn’t change the fact that something is moral.

    Christians: What God says in Bible = moral

    Now how about you? Based on humans? Everyone has a different opinion here. How absolute.

  192. Samuel Skinner Says:

    I don’t ask for politeness Jamie. You can do a victory dance and post in on youtube for all I care. I ask for complete sentances. That have thought behind them. Something you can’t muster. Get off your lazy ass and type WHY I am wrong. Or shut up. Or continue being an ass- I can’t really stop you.

    Actually I was refering to the fact that in the US, you know what people do when they don’t like the interpretation they get? They go to a new church. That is ironically how the New Agers got started.

    Now to Scott.

    Although this doesn’t make God wishy wahy, it does make using the Bible for moral standards wishy washy. How can you use a source where people get differant answers? Even if they are equally knowledgeable?

    I don’t have to know everything to be an atheist. God is everywhere remember? If he is logically impossible, then he can’t exist either. But God isn’t hiding somewhere, nor is he a physical person with a beard.

    Um… Scott that is balanoy. They Dead Sea Scrolls are different from the current ones- not to mention that there are plenty of unused gospels that were weeded out.

    Humanists believe that happiness, humans, well being and the like are the defintion of good, where actions that increase them are good and actions that reduce them are bad. This basic idea has… well, never changed really. It IS constant, and unlike the bible, you can convince another humanist they are wrong. Which is important because it cuts down on the infighting and killing, which are, of course, bad. Although everyone believes they are good, if they accept a common criteria for demonstrating wheter they are good or not (evidence, reason, etc) you can correct them when they screw up.

    The reason I compare you to them is you can’t show they were wrong. I can show that communists are wrong. Do you wish for a demonstration?

    Scott, the constitution of the US IS ever changing. Unfortunately for you, that can happen- if you are a supreme court justice.

    Nope, got it wrong again.
    Christianity+ politics = theocracy.
    Atheism + politics = secularism.

    Um, Scott, for communists the state was God. It could do no wrong… but only if it was a communist state.

    And there are theist communists. Plato’s republic is communist and a theocracy.

    Um… in the bible God says it is okay to do things… that later get recinded.
    Although people have differant opinions… you can resolve it. For example you can show that x leads to more happy/better off people than y, therefore x is better.

    Reality IS absolute. There is only one reality. Evidence is information based off of reality. Morality is a process with human happiness being the goal. Since there is only one best way, that way is absolute. Just because it isn’t written down yet, doesn’t make that any less true.

  193. Scott Thong Says:

    Although this doesn’t make God wishy wahy, it does make using the Bible for moral standards wishy washy. How can you use a source where people get differant answers? Even if they are equally knowledgeable?

    You strike at a straw man.

    Use the real world as the measure: How many percentage of Christians who go to church and read their Bible daily disagree that God forbids murder, stealing, fibbing, adultery?

    I don’t have to know everything to be an atheist. God is everywhere remember? If he is logically impossible, then he can’t exist either. But God isn’t hiding somewhere, nor is he a physical person with a beard.

    You know for sure God isn’t hiding somewhere? You’re omniscient. You are god!

    Um… Scott that is balanoy. They Dead Sea Scrolls are different from the current ones- not to mention that there are plenty of unused gospels that were weeded out.

    Skinner, when will you start researching before blabbing your BLAZING IGNORANCE everywhere?

    From fuller explanation at Comparing Very Old Text to the Modern Bible:

    As an example, Isaiah has been completely unrolled and translated. What, if any, difference is there between this two thousand year old scroll of Isaiah and the book of Isaiah in the Bible on your shelf?

    The answer to that is six words; and that difference is attributed to spelling.

    I don’t expect non-researchers to bother even skimming through that link, so you’ll just agree to take my word for it and accept my correctness.

    On the Apocrypha and rejects, they are not accepted based on very simple judgments – Gospel of Thomas has a 100-foot tall Jesus and a talking cross, Gospel of Barnabas says it rains in summer in Israel when it doesn’t and does not realize Messiah = Christ… I could go on.

    But of course, you didn’t know any of this – since you already know that Christianity must be dishonest and the Bible must be corrupted.

    Humanists believe that happiness, humans, well being and the like are the defintion of good, where actions that increase them are good and actions that reduce them are bad. This basic idea has… well, never changed really. It IS constant, and unlike the bible, you can convince another humanist they are wrong.

    The basic idea has never changed = absolute.

    Convince each other someone is wrong = relativist.

    Oh look, I just used your own Bible interpretation means relativism argument against you.

    The reason I compare you to them is you can’t show they were wrong. I can show that communists are wrong. Do you wish for a demonstration?

    I call your bluff and say, yes do demonstrate how the Communists can possibly be objectively wrong.

    Scott, the constitution of the US IS ever changing

    You avoid my question again. If the Constitution is not amended, but I interpret it wrongly, did it just get amended by my opinion?

    And there are theist communists. Plato’s republic is communist and a theocracy.

    My bad, I admit it.

    Correction therefore goes: Theistic communists (Plato) GOOD. Atheistic communists (Stalin) BAD.

    Remove the Communists part and what does that spell?

    Reality IS absolute. There is only one reality. Evidence is information based off of reality. Morality is a process with human happiness being the goal. Since there is only one best way, that way is absolute. Just because it isn’t written down yet, doesn’t make that any less true.

    You come to the same objection you have against Christians interpreting the Bible as the soruce of morality.

    There may be only one ebst way to perfect human happiness, but what is that way? How do we find it? Who knows it or decides it?

    Why, ever-changing, always-different humans. Just like the Christian interpretors you deride.

    Relativism.

  194. Jamie Says:

    Haha Samuel Skinner, you admitted can’t stop me. You give up so easily?

    Samuel Skinner = FAIL

  195. Samuel Skinner Says:

    Jamie… shut the fuck up. You have the intelligence of a retarded chimp- although, it could probably write better comments than you could.

    Now to Scott. Well, since those activities land people in jail I’m pretty sure all Christians will agree they are wrong. You are right- lying is the exception. And Christians feel free to “lie for Christ”. Adultery falls under the whole sex category. It is also worth noticing that given the fact the majority of the US is Christian, the majority of the murders are Christian.

    God is hiding? Scott- we are talking about a being that can make the universe, bend the laws of physics, shade logic, create time… I don’t think such a creature would be the master of “hide and seek”. It is such a stupid idea it is hard to explain… The best I have is WTF?

    So you use logic to realize that the other Gospels are false? Why don’t you use it to realize the ones we have can’t be true because he rises from the dead? Wait- we already believe that. The other ones have miracles that sound ridiculous or errors that are too obvious- so we don’t use them.
    I was referring to the scrolls vs the current books. I don’t doubt that scribes have been very consistent keeping the bible the same.

    I wasn’t saying that humanists can convince each other their goal was wrong- only their methods (For the purposes of this discussion humanist refers to someone who is a good person and an atheist). The basic idea NEVER changes. Only the methods to reach it change with new information.

    I wasn’t bluffing Scott. In fact you have to be an idiot to rail against commies without knowing why they are wrong.
    Okay, first the goal of communism was a utopian society, but lets just go with “better than capitalism”, where better is longer lifespans, happier people, etc.
    Flaw number one- central planning. It is impossible to control the entire economy perfectly. Capitalism doesn’t have this problem- if their is a gap, someone gets rich exploiting it. Communism requires that the designers be able to foresee all problems in advance OR be flexible enough to change their plans. The first is impossible. The second is hard AND contradicts the whole point of central planning.
    Flaw number two- lack of motivation. There is no reason to work hard.
    Flaw number three- totalitarianism. The government employs everyone. This gives them a huge amount of power over the population. Even in a democratic free communist state (which has never occurred) this means they can control where you live, how much you earn and the like. It is like having a boss who also has police power.
    Flaw number four- inflexibility. Communist states are very bad at updating capital. This is because it requires constant work, high degree of workmanship and the ability to adapt to things that were just invented.

    The result of all these is that the economy grows slower than a capitalist economy AND due to the paranoia and fear, much of the growth is funneled into the military. It leads to police states. The combination of poor growth and political repressiveness make communism a worse choice than capitalism.

    See? That was easy!

    Scott, if you are a supreme court justice there is no wrong opinion. They have come to exactly opposite opinions over issues repeatedly. You can come up with an opinion that is completely unrelated to anything at all… but the supreme court has done that too. Roe v Wade is a good modern example (the right to privacy… what the heck?).

    Actually Plato’s ideal society was a militarized police state. It would be like Sparta. Not good. The closest we get to a communist state before 1917 would be the Incas. The government owned everything and amassed huge surplus while the population eeked out at subsistence level. The government all conducted “forced relocation”, continually expanded and pacified the populace. And, yes they were theists- the King ruled by divine right. They weren’t nice people.

    Scott, methods changing doesn’t make something relativist. The methods only change because we realize the original one doesn’t work as well. The overarching goal- and even the components of it- haven’t changed- ever. And humans aren’t as fluid as you think. They have been constant in most ways for all of recorded history.

  196. Jamie Says:

    Samuel Skinner, I thought you prided yourself as being eloquent, logical and rational and the rest of us were irrational, worse-than-asshole dumbasses? So why do you resort to swearwords? At a loss for words? Hahaha you are so ironic.

    Samuel Skinner = FAIL

  197. michael Says:

    My master says that your body is on a vertical center and mine is as well, and I should respect yours as much as I do my own unless you do not respect mine. There is an invisible center between us that is horizontal and has the depth of our height. A field if you will? My master says that only one person can occupy that field between us at any given time. If we choose to agree that that field between us should stay from blows then I won’t have to take it away from you. Thanks A student of Lee Jun Fan and Jesus Christ

  198. Jesse Says:

    Communism didn’t kill 100 million people. Fact check.

    If you want to know what the greatest killer of the 20th century was, it was smallpox. It was eradicated from the planet by godless liberal scientists.

  199. Arizona Atheist Says:

    Sorry, but your arguments are sorely lacking. Communism is anti religious, not atheistic. Atheists are not inherently anti-religious. The communists committed their atrocities because of Marxist doctrine, not atheism. Those are the facts. I really wish theists would stop using this tired, unhistorical, and baseless claim.

  200. Samuel Skinner Says:

    AA, you are under the impression that “facts” and “logic” will be accepted by people who claim that following evidence is a form of faith.

    Also, I think that was the first comment… before this exploded out of control.

    On the bright side, Scott has declared that he holds the rules above the rule giver- he won’t pull a Vox Day.

  201. peter Says:

    Mr thong writes at the start :”within a particular belief system (at least, for the theistic ones) the set of moral codes and laws is treated as absolute – given by an absolute authority and meant to be absolute and not open for rewriting.”

    Why then is there a first and then second testament .Because it was absolute and not open for rewriting ? .

    Mr Thong you and i and many others understand we just dont always understand everything , within that lies a strength because we can change and keep learning .It is only when we get stuck within absolutes that we are in danger .

    I offer no absolute but suggest that somewhere between the first and second testament certain leading members involved with these biblical writings , might have decided for instance that stoning people to death maybe just wasnt the best idea .Maybe the reason being that some poor folks had been found to have been wrongly convicted to something that was sadly to become an absolute end in this life for them.

    The trouble starts with inforced absolutes no matter what we refer to , whether it be christianity or communism or anything else . We need no devine moral judgement to understand what becomes common sense .Ie its not such a good idea to be to quick in deciding peoples death , when we know we can be wrong .

    We make mistakes and hopefully learn by them , if so doing it then becomes a future strength and then not all is total loss.We also lean from things we get right when things go well , such as observing that upon treating others how we would like to be treated ourselves .Often this has a positive effect , and our moralitys evolve .

    Its when absolutes get in the way that danger of ignorance arises .Within both religion and communism we have seen the nasty effects .Lets be honest for once and not try to suggest either is any better , we could argue back and forth until the cows arrive home but the honest truth is that both have a lot to answer for .

    To not see it in all honesty we would need to become willingly blind and become absolute fools .

  202. Aspentroll Says:

    If all those theistic statements are true about god and atheism being
    such a blight on humanity, where the hell is he/she/it? Shouldn’t he/she/it be using all these powers that are attributed to god come into play? There have been millions & millions of people throughout history killed for some reason or other and never, not ever, has this god intervened to stop any of it. This god every one touts as being a know everything, do everything, controls everything
    kind of entity has failed to show off his great abilities. If this entity
    is so loving why are all these atrocities allowed to happen? It becomes fairly obvious that god is behind all of the strife on earth
    or he/she/it is non-existent and we are all wasting our time paying any attention to the whole idea.

  203. Arizona Atheist Says:

    Skinner,

    You said: “AA, you are under the impression that “facts” and “logic” will be accepted by people who claim that following evidence is a form of faith.”

    It depends. Some people might accept it while others won’t. I like to try to think positive. Besides, with the massive amount of evidence that is in favor of the atheists (that atheism is not a cause of communism, and morality needs no divine source. I’ve proven this in my review of David Aikman’s book on my blog) I don’t see how anyone could possibly argue against it.

  204. Scott Thong Says:

    Aspentroll, what you cite is the Problem of Evil – How can a loving and all-powerful God allow suffering and wrongdoing to exist? Either He cannot stop evil, which means He is not all-powerful… Or He chooses to let it continue, which means He is not loving.

    It’s an age-old question with plenty of debate.

    Without me having to go into my own explanations, first try taking a look at how others have addressed the problem.

  205. Samuel Skinner Says:

    AA, all this was covered… 6 months ago? That was when I did the arguing. You can start it up again, but well, look at how he responded. Uh Scott, I’m pretty sure Aspen Troll is familiar with the explanations and their rebuttals. I could be wrong, but I think AT has been on the net long enough to soak it up- and that isn’t taking into account research.

  206. Mad Bluebird Says:

    The blood it took to print all those CHE T-Shirts the blood of thousands of inocent men women and children HOW DO YOU RED PIGS LIKE THAT?

  207. Mad Bluebird Says:

    And lets not forget all those murders commited by FIDEL CASTRO even while that worthless excuse for a president JIMMY CARTER was rubbing elbows with him and urging a end to the embargo JIMMY CARTER IS STILL A IDIOT

  208. Aaron Crouse Says:

    wtf these are my people so when you say pflag accepts zoo sex our on crack. science proves that homosexuality isnt wrong our religion says in the greek bible homosexuality is okay.hell adam adn eve were homosexual men until the fall and god gave them gender. its fundis like ou that piss me off ou cherry pick what to bleive but the bible sas do all this or your condendemed. first and formost are you a historian or studying to be one, readinf you paper is telling me your eduacation is on the level of a child. in theory marxism thought never forbad religion but he scientist marx wanted government control. sodom and gommerah is not about homosexuality but helping society their downfall was similiar us today greed, not helping those who need it ie beggers,homeless and that doesnt mean just given that means fixing the system. and if ou look at the bible times most countries were in communist idea gov. hell our government founded by greek democracy and romans were basicall communist. educate yourself. and since when does marriage constute children most religion it was about property and inheritance. a student of history

  209. Zack T Says:

    Wow, Aaron and your super knowledge on the bible…

    “hell adam adn eve were homosexual men until the fall and god gave them gender.”

    Genesis 1:26-27:
    Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
    So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

    Genesis 2:22-23:
    Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
    The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman’, for she was taken out of man.”

    BTW, Are you on crack, Aaron? I don’t see where you get the idea Adam and Eve were both male in the bible. It’s not Adam and Steve.

    ——-

    “first and formost are you a historian or studying to be one, readinf you paper is telling me your eduacation is on the level of a child.”

    This line is HILARIOUS coming from someone who can’t keep the grammar police at bay.. but I understand if English is not your main language nor your hometown’s…

    ——–

    “and since when does marriage constute children”

    Genesis 1:28: (right after creating male and female, quoted earlier)
    God blessed [Adam & Eve] and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it.”

    It doesn’t mean that once you’re married you MUST bring forth children… The verse just means God prefers us humans to be ‘fruitful’.

    —-

    Aaron… please take your own advice and “educate yourself.”

  210. Simon Thong Says:

    I think he’s high on crack and cracked. Hadn’t come across such a crackpot till now. Btw, does anyone understand even 0.05% of what he wrote?

  211. Joe the Plumber Says:

    Wowsa!!! Is this blog for real or a POE? Cause if it’s the latter you got it down pat; and if it’s the former, your one batsh*t insane fundie.

  212. Joe the Plumber Says:

    “Your comment is awaiting moderation”

    Nevermind, I got my answer. Only batsh!t insane fundies censor the word batsh!t.

  213. minddefensecoach Says:

    To understand the truth of mass murder. visit minddefensecoach.wordpress.com

  214. Scott Thong Says:

    Dude… What?

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