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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Who actually believes in nothing?

Atheists do not believe in god, but do believe the universe exists.
Theists believe a god exists, and also believe the universe exists.
There is no proof that a god exists, however, everyone agrees the universe exists.

Therefore, it is the theists who are spending their time in a meaningless endeavor, since they are the ones who believe in something that cannot be proven.

Issues with resurrected people

People of faith tend to ignore the coming resurrection of the dead—perhaps because the idea is so obviously preposterous. And yet this is precisely the form of afterlife one must expect if one is to be a serious Jew, Christian, or Muslim. Devout Muslims may not yet doubt this, but most Jews and Christians have begun to waver. In fact, scarcely 20% of American Christians understand that they have been promised a physical afterlife. Most seem to believe that they will travel to heaven at the moment of death, leaving their corpses behind forever. But Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are in full accord on this point: God intends to do the humble work of reassembling our bodies on the Day of Judgment. The problem, of course, is that it is very difficult to imagine how even an omniscient and omnipotent God could accomplish such a feat.

Human bodies are made of cells and molecules and it is very highly likely that some of the molecules in a person's body that make up the cells of that body were once molecules that were in the cells of other human bodies.  How then can the exact same dead bodies be resurrected for everyone if over time the dead bodies shared these molecules while on earth?

If one tries to argue that Jesus knows who is going to heaven and therefore, makes sure those people do not share their molecules with any others, then you have the problem of free will and predestination.

What of the person who was born without a leg? Does that person get a new leg when they are resurrected? With what material does that leg get made? There was never an original leg to resurrect. If they do not get a new leg, how is the body perfected? At which stage of life will we be resurrected? If a man dies at age 90, hobbled by age, will he be condemned to live in this state for eternity? If a woman has lost a limb, will she be given a new one on the Day of Judgment? If a person dies as an infant, not yet able to speak, will he be resurrected in a tiny body but given adult faculties?

If people get a body similar to their own body but not the exact same body that they had at the moment of their death then it is not resurrection but the uniting of the soul with a facsimile or replica.  The body that died is not resurrected but another body is created by a deity to unite with the soul for all eternity.  This belief avoids the recycling, corrupted and maladjusted body problems but it is not strictly speaking a resurrection of the body and it does not get around the one and only one body problem.

Hypocrisy and irony with our political leaders

Now that President Obama has attacked Libya without Congress authorizing it, let us take a look at what our leaders have to say about this topic.

'The President does not have the power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.' -Senator Barack Obama, December 20, 2007.

“I asked them to put together [for] me a draft, which I’m now literally riding between towns editing, that I want to make clear and submit to the Untied States Senate pointing out the president has no authority to unilaterally attack Iran. And I want to make it clear, I want it on the record, and I want to make it clear, if he does, as chairman of the foreign relations committee and former chair of the judiciary committee, I will move to impeach him.” - Joe Biden in 2007

“In dealing with the threats posed by the Iranian regime, which has gained its expanding influence in Iraq and the region as a result of the administration’s policies, President Bush must not be allowed to act without the authority and oversight of Congress. It would be a mistake of historical proportion if the administration thought that the 2002 resolution authorizing force against Iraq was a blank check for the use of force against Iran without further congressional authorization. Nor should the President think that the 2001 resolution authorizing force after the terrorist attacks of 9/11 in any way authorizes force against Iran .
If the administration believes that any — any — use of force against Iran is necessary, the President must come to Congress to seek that authority. - Hilary Clinton in 2007

Monday, March 21, 2011

Follow the money

If you are a Christian, I have a question for you? Do you really believe everything that Jesus says in the bible is true? Is he really your Savior and the most perfect being ever to walk the Earth? Does your salvation rely on following his message? If your answer is yes, then why do you not actually do what he says to do?

Matthew 6:19
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Luke 14:33
Any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple.
Matthew 6:24
No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and Money.
Matthew 19:21-24
Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth. Then Jesus said to his disciples, “I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”
Matthew 19:28-29
Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.

The message is clear. If you want to follow Jesus, you need to “sell your possessions and give to the poor.” It is a very simple message, and easy to do. Have you done it? Why don’t you sell everything and follow Jesus, as he requests in the Bible?
Do you know better than Jesus how to live your lives? Are you a hypocrite or a liar?


It has been pointed out repeatedly that there have been thousands of religions and gods dreamt up by man over the centuries. What is intriguing and frustrating is how a theist can dismiss all other religions except their own, yet not understand why others dismiss the one they believe in. They are firmly convinced that their religion is unique and different. When the similarities are pointed out, they retort that because we do not believe we cannot understand. They have it backwards. It is because we do understand how reality actually is, that we know their religion is no different than any other

"I contend we are both Atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do.  When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."
- Stephen F Roberts

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Cause and effect

I get comments like this all the time. "In 1962, this nation was foolish enough to allow the highest court in our land to let one atheist woman convince them, when it wasn’t their call to begin with-it should have been the peoples decision, to invite God and His Son out of our schools, and our homes, and our nation. Since then, we have meandered along like a drunk man for approximately a generation before we began to come apart at the seams. If America, like Israel, continues to thumb our nose in the face of God and His Son, then we are just starting to see the beginnings of our trials and tribulations."

In 1954, the Pledge of Allegiance was altered with the words "under god" being added. In 1957, our currency was altered with "in god we trust" being added. Since you feel that country has been moving to a more troubled state since 1962, you could just as easily say that it was the addition of these words that has caused our problems.  It would also be as wrong as your initial claim, as it uses the same incorrect application of cause and effect.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Did the US Congress print a bible?

The story of the US Congress printing its own bible for use in schools during the early years of this countries formation has been circulating for years. The basis for the story seems to have done in this case to use a genuine resolution recommending a Bible published by a Philadelphia printer, Robert Aitkin, for its care and accuracy in printing (colonial printers were notoriously careless and inaccurate) as the basis for this lie:
Whereupon, Resolved, That the United States in Congress assembled, highly approve the pious and laudable undertaking of Mr. Aitken, as subservient to the interest of religion as well as an instance of the progress of arts in this country, and being satisfied of the care and accuracy in the execution of the work, they recommend this edition of the Bible to the inhabitants of the United States, and hereby authorise him to publish this recommendation in the manner he shall think proper.

The phrase “for use in all schools” may have been suggested by these words in Robert Aitkin’s petition: “your Memorialist begs leave to inform your Honours that he hath begun and made considerable progress in a neat Edition of the Holy Scriptures for the use of schools.”
However, it was never stated by Congress that it intended for the bible to be used in schools.

Robert Aitken, did petition the US Congress to review his bible. Here is his request (The words in {brackets} are difficult to read.): “Under this persuasion your Memorialist begs leave to inform your Honours that he {hath} begun and made considerable progress in a neat Edition of the Holy Scriptures for the use of schools. [And] being cautious of {suffering} his copy of the Bible to {be set forth} without the Sanction of Congress Humbly prays that your Honors would take this important Matter into serious consideration & would be [illegible] to a [illegible] one Member or Members of your Honorable [illegible] to inspect his work to that the same may be published under the authority of Congress. And memorialist prays that he may be Commissioned or otherwise appointed & authorized to print and vend Editions of the Sacred Scriptures, in such manner and form as may best suit the wants and demands of the good people of these States, provided the same being in all things perfectly consonant to the Scriptures as heretofore Established and received amongst us.”

So it looks as if Robert Aitken, a printer, had visions of being the authorized bible publisher for the new nation, “appointed … to print and vend Editions of the Sacred Scriptures”; the possibility of getting the contract for supplying school bibles must have seemed especially attractive.

So, how did Congress respond to these requests? Did it recommend that Aitken’s bible be used in schools? Well, no. Did it commission Robert Aitken, printer, to print and vend editions of the Holy Scriptures? Again, no. Did it have the work published under its authority? Once again, no. What Congress did was have the chaplains check the book for accuracy, and allow Aitken to publish a statement that Congress found it to be carefully and accurately done. And that’s all Congress did. They pointedly did not authorize its use in schools, for example. In the end Congress did not even buy copies for distribution to the troops, as Aitken hoped. The edition lost money, and its poor sales are the reason it is so rare today.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Is Atheism the same as Secular Humanism?

Not really. There are certainly some similar beliefs, however, I do not believe they are identical. Let us look at the terms. An atheist simply does not believe in the existence of god(s). A Humanist believes that humanity as a whole is more important than any of its subgroups. Basic to humanism is an attitude that starts with a sense of togetherness, a sympathy and a sharing, accompanied by a sense that you as an individual share responsibility for our collective future with all the rest of humanity. If you believe that there is a God up there someplace that you can invoke to alter specific things that are going to happen, you are not a true humanist. . You could be an atheist and care nothing for any other person. Conversely, you could believe in a higher power, but still believe that humans are solely responsible for our own actions and that a god will not intervene. This means you can be a humanist in practice even if you choose to believe in some higher power. Some atheists might dispute this, but I believe they are being unnecessarily exclusive, and underrate the need for all of us to work together to combat the pernicious forces of the conservative religious types. Issues like the separation of church and state are very important, and non-believers need to work together with sensible believers to make sure we suffer no return to theocratic tyranny.

To put it in technical terms, there is a great gap between theists and deists, where deists believe there is a power up there but basically we are on our own. That gap is far more important, in practical terms, than the gap in belief between deists and atheists. As long as you recognize that human destiny is made here on earth, by us humans, and that we are solely responsible for what happens, whether you believe in God (the deist approach) or don’t (atheism) is a matter of choice, and an individual seriously concerned with the future of humanity can go either way. A deist with strong humanist leanings is likely to be a person that makes a positive contribution to humanity as a whole.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Japan earthquake

The magnitude 8.9 earthquake that hit Japan has done a vast amount of damage. I’m seeing lots of information scattered around the web, and figured a post listing them might help.
First, if you need info about the quake, CNET has a long list of links for finding lost loved ones, information on the quake in general, and more.
There are many charitable, non-profit organizations that may or will be providing aid and relief.  I do not endorse these groups, but provide this for your information.

NCAA, 2011

  • Which NCAA Teams Are Going Dancing?
    Ohio State, Duke, Kansas & Pittsburgh are No. 1 seeds.

  • As a KU alumni, I had to take a minute to congratulate the Jayhawks on this.

    Saturday, March 12, 2011

    The Principles of Hermeneutics

    Here is a statement from the following link:

    But first, bear in mind several basic principles of hermeneutics:
    -any passage which is somewhat obscure must be assessed in light of more clear passages.
    -any passage which seems to contradict a majority of other texts must be read in that light.

    However, why does scripture have to be read under this principle? The bible does not say to read it this way. It is a human invention. This gets into the heart of why the bible is contradictory. Since there are actually passages which contradict others, as this article clearly states and agrees with, there had to be a method developed which helped minimize this problem. However, why should there be this problem if the bible did not contain any contradictions as Christians are always claiming?

    This entire article is a logical fallacy.

    Natural disasters and the mind of God

    This week we heard the terrible news that Japan  suffered losses when a tsunami hit their country. These types of disasters occur all too often. And the question is always brought up, why did god allow this? The normal answer is we can't understand the mind of god.

    However, why can't we understand his mind? The bible says we were created in his likeness. It says he loves us and protects us. These are concepts we completely understand. What is interesting is that the bible does not even try to explain his mindset on these actions. Now, why would that be? If there was actually a reason given, then we would be able to discuss it, debate and determine if we agree with it. By not giving an answer, it makes it beyond our scope. In other words, the reason we can't we can't understand it is because we are never given the reason to try and understand.

    However, that is not the real reason. The real reason is because the concept of god is a myth. Natural disasters occur, not because god does not prevent them, but because we live in a world where these are normal events. He does not prevent them, because myths do not prevent anything. They also do not make anything occur. It is time for the world to put these childish ideas behind us.

    Moreover, the fact that the poorest often suffer the most during these disasters is, to me, very significant.
    Consider this from a debate with William Lane Craig and Corey Washington. Corey Washington develops the point:

    "But I think there is something you may not have known about these natural disasters. You know who gets hurt in these earthquakes? Mostly poor people. Mostly weak people, the old and the young. You remember that earthquake that happened in Armenia, back in the eighties? This earthquake was actually less powerful than the earthquake in San Francisco. Yet 25,000 people died in Armenia. Why did they die? Because they had bad housing. It was cheaply made. They were just crushed by the roofs. On the other hand only a few hundred people died in San Francisco, because we're a wealthy country and we have very good housing. Relatively speaking, people really didn't suffer. So you have to think about what Craig is saying. God's going to allow the innocent, the weak, and the poor to suffer, so the rich can show their colors, can be courageous, and develop themselves into moral beings. That sounds kind of sick to me actually. I think this is totally incompatible with Christianity as you read it. Remember the proverb was that, "The meek shall inherit the earth," not that they shall be destroyed by it."

    Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    Gender Roles in Marriage: What it Means to Lead and Follow

    The article says this: “Advanced tango dancers, as in advanced marriages, ad lib their way across the floor because there are no shoe prints outlined in white to follow. They move by the impulses of their hearts, by the room’s physical borders, around others in their path, and by the direction of his firm hand and her receptive body. As in marriage, someone has to guide, or they will fall on one another. It would just be a matter of time before everyone on the dance floor fell into a heap of twisted ankles and angry words”

    It depends on the dance. Many dances do not require that anyone leads. Some allow each person to do their own dance, some simply allow the partners to hang onto each other and enjoy the feeling of intimacy. What is interesting about this message is that it is saying only the male can succuessfully  lead. Women can lead lead equally well. It is by tradition that men lead, not by any superior skill or ability. Many successful marriages are that way because the woman leads.

    There is nothing wrong with the man being in control, but to claim it MUST be that way it simply absurd.

    Monday, March 7, 2011

    Why is the attack against Christianity?

    Why is the Atheist’s main target always Jesus of Nazareth, and never Buddha, Confucius, or Mohamed?  Why is the aspiring athlete’s target always the true champion and never the also-rans?

    Since we live in a society where 80-90% of the population say they are Christians, it is not difficult to understand why the bulk of the attacks against religion focus on Christianity. Why would we spend our time on attacking a different religion, when Christians already believe that religion is false? We spend our time on Christianity because that is what the bulk of this society believes is true.

    However, let us be clear. Atheists also point out the flaws with other faiths. For those religions are just as false as Christianity. It just does not have have much relevance in this society.

    What does a free society prohibit?

    The comment gets made all the time that we are living in a nanny state. I happen to concur with that viewpoint. However, I believe we would all agree that there must be some rules in a society in order for it to function. If there were no rules, it would be anarchy. Therefore, the question becomes, what is the limit to government?

    In the USA, I believe that the limits should be what the Constitution allows. The founders set up a wonderful system of checks and balances. However, over the years, this system has become corrupted and dysfunctional. Government grows and sticks its nose into more and more of our activities every year. It is always done by people who feel they know better than the rest of us how to live our lives.

    The current fight over universal health care is a perfect example of this. There is nothing in the Constitution that would allow the Fed government to require that every citizen buy health insurance. The Feds are basing it on the Commerce Clause. When did not buying something become commerce? That goes to heart of this debate. We are seeing the public fight back against an ever expanding government. I hope the public wins.

    Collective bargaining

    The stalemate in in WI is an interesting example of the problem with government budgets. Walker's proposal would remove most collective bargaining rights for public employees, except over wage increases no greater than inflation. Police and fire departments would be the only exemptions. The legislation would also require state workers to start paying more for their pension and health care benefits starting in April, which amounts to an 8 percent pay cut on average.The unions have agreed to the pay concessions as long as they can retain their bargaining rights.

    Now, why would a union give in on pension and health care, but dig their heals in on collective bargaining? The answer is simple. With collective bargaining, they can regain what they have already given up. If they lose collective bargaining, they also lose any hope of getting back to the status quo. Which is why it is very important that they do lose collective bargaining. Otherwise, the state will be back with the same problem down the road.

    Saturday, March 5, 2011

    New animals are the same as old animals

    The comment gets made that there are animals today that are the same as they were millions of years ago. And guess what, that is true. So, that means that evolution is not true, correct? After all, all animals evolve.

    Not exactly. All animals have evolved and all animals can evolve, but that does not mean that a species cannot find a niche it is successful in and stay there. The misunderstanding is that evolution always changes a group. This is only true when the change is beneficial. If the group is already successful and continues to be successful, then new mutations will not be beneficial and will not change.

    Friday, March 4, 2011

    The origin of Jewish monotheism.

     How many gods?

    Those of us who grow up in English-speaking countries where Judaism or Christianity is the principal religion learn very early in life that the Bible opens with the phrase: “In the beginning, God created heaven and earth”.

    Believers accept that statement as truth. Others assume that it reflects unchanging doctrine. And most are unaware that this opening line is a translation of words written thousands of years ago - words that may be inaccurately translated.

    What happens when we compare the translation with the original text? (Don't forget to read the Hebrew from right to left.)
    בְּ רֵאשִׁית , בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים , אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם , וְאֵת הָאָרֶץ
    Bereshit bara Elohim et hashamayim
    ve'et ha'arets
    Hebrew, like Arabic, was originally written without vowels. That allows some words to be interpreted differently depending on which vowels are inserted. However, there is little dispute over this opening verse.

    Look at the third word, Elohim. The -imending means that it is plural, like cherubimand seraphimElohim means "gods", not "god". That means an accurate translation would read:

    “In the beginning, the gods created heaven and earth.”

    Gods? Judaism and its offshoot Christianity are monotheistic religions. Is this a clerical error? What does the rest of the Bible say? Verse two: “Elohim” again. The verse should be “The spirit of the gods moved upon the waters.” Verse three: “The gods said ‘Let there be light’.” Verse four: "The gods saw the light". Verse five: "The gods named the light". And so on and so on.

    How often does the word “Elohim”, in the plural, appear in the Old Testament? About 2,500 times. What's going on here? Was there more than one god at the Creation? How many gods were there in Eden and at the Flood?

    1.5b Grammar or history?

    Chapter One: Defining God 

    Does God exist? Before we try to answer that question we need to have a clear idea of who or what God is. How do we describe God? What versions of God are on offer?

    1.1: God, faith and religion
    Do they need each other? 

    1.2: What is God?
    God comes in several styles and models 

    1.3: Perception and reality
    Is what we see what we get? 

    1.4: The evolving God
    From prehistory to today 

    1.5: El, Yahweh et al
    The Old Testament family of gods 

    1.6: Three's company
    The Christian Trinity 

    1.7: Allah
    Over to Islam 

    1.8: Majors and minors

    1.9: The unknowable God
    Is he there? 

    1.10: Your god or mine?
    Made in our image 

    1.11: Summary 

    Finished this chapter? Move on to 

    Chapter Two 
    Problems with God 

    The real God – if such a thing exists – may be very different from the god portrayed by Jewish, Christian or Muslim scripture.

    But whichever picture of God we look at - from the Bible and Koran to the images presented by other faiths and believers - we are confronted by problems. When examined closely, God's nature is so contradictory that it is unlikely, if not impossible, for him to exist. 

    Not sure what you're looking for? 

    If there's a word that you don't recognize, it might be defined here

    If there's a topic you're looking for, check the Search box at the top right of this page. 

    If there's something you want to ask, send an e-mail. We can't guarantee an answer, but we'll do our best. 

    Let's start with the official explanation. Jews and Christians who are aware of the original text claim that there has only ever been one God and the plural, Elohim, is used as a mark of respect.

    That's not unreasonable. Many languages use the plural this way, particularly for kings and lords who represent not only themselves but the people they govern. In the past, English made a difference between "you" for those above us on the social scale and "thou" for friends and family. French has "vous", Russian "vi", German "Sie", Spanish "Usted" and so on for formal use when talking to one person.

    Besides, believers point out, the idea that Elohim refers to only one being is reinforced by the verb bara (created), which has a singular, not plural (baru) ending. There was only one God - and grammar supports that position.

    It's a good point, and on its own it might be conclusive, but it ignores other, stronger evidence, both internal (from the Bible itself) and external (from history and archaeology).

    The first problem is that the word used to refer to God changes as the Bible progresses. By the middle of the Old Testament Elohim has almost disappeared, to be replaced by Yahweh (Jehovah), which is used almost 7,000 times. Other names - El ("God") and Adonai ("Lords") - are also used occasionally. Why this shift in vocabulary?

    Take a step back to look at the historical background. The Jewish faith emerged out of Canaanite beliefs, which both predate and are contemporary with the Bible. The Canaanites, whose primary city was Ugarit (now Ras Sharma in modern Syria), had many deities. First came El, the Most High and the father of the gods; his many children included YahwehAsherah (also known as Athiratl, the fertility goddess) and Baal

    1.5c Family feuds

    As in any pantheon (group of gods), there were rivalries and alliances, as each deity sought worshippers and demanded their own methods of worship. Some of these events are described in the Bible, others come from other records - and these records shed interesting light on the Biblical narrative.

    Asherah was commonly represented by large phallic symbols or "poles" - a word that was mistranslated as "trees" or "groves" in early versions of the Bible. Baal was represented by a golden calf. Both these gods and their symbols of worship are described in the Old Testament. What is omitted is the suggestion put forward by some historians that in
    pic of Asherah from Ugarit, now in Louvre13th century BC relief of Asherah from Ugarit
    Canaanite mythology Yahweh and Asherah were married.

    Yahweh, therefore, was originally only one of several gods. To prevent them squabbling, El divided the different tribes that inhabited the land we now know as Israel / Palestine among his children. Yahweh was awarded the Israelites, and in Deuteronomy 32.8 - 32.9 he confirms that he is a junior god, telling his people: "When the Most High [El] gave the nations their inheritance, when he divided all mankind, he set up boundaries for the peoples according to the number of the sons of Israel. For the LORD's [Yahweh's] portion is his people, Jacob his allotted inheritance." (New International Version)

    1.5d From some to one

    The Israelites soon learn that Yahweh is a demanding deity who insists that his people repudiate all other gods. He demands that the Asherah poles be destroyed. His anger explodes when his orders are ignored - as when the Jews worship Baal's golden calf while Moses is absent receiving the Ten Commandments (Exodus 32). As time passes, the Jews abandon the idea of Elohim - many gods - and refer only to Yahweh who, in their eyes and perhaps in reality, has become all-powerful while his parents and siblings disappear from history.

    This interpretation is not some atheist conspiracy. It is the word of the Bible itself, supported by evidence from non-Biblical sources. At the core of Jewish, and Christian, belief, is the idea that there were several gods at Creation. These gods persisted through many generations, including the Flood and flight from Egypt and only when Yahweh, the self-described jealous god, becomes pre-eminent, are theElohim, the many gods, replaced by one single god. Polytheism has become monotheism.

    1.5e The triumph of reason

    It is good to remind ourselves of the process of reasoning that brought us to this understanding. Firstly, our minds were open, not closed: we started with the question, not an answer (the question "what does the Bible tells us?", not the answer "the Bible tells us there is one god"). Secondly, we gathered all the evidence, not just the evidence that agreed with our theory (we looked at history and archaeology as well as the Bible).

    Should we accept this new interpretation or tell ourselves that no, there was only ever one God in the Bible? No, because we must also apply the Occam's Razortest, which tells us that the simplest solution to a problem is always more preferable to the more complicated one. If the word says "gods", it means "gods", not "god"; if Yahweh tells us that there are other gods, we should believe him rather than try to interpret his words differently.

    Where are we now? Our reasoning has led us to the following possible conclusions:

    a. If the Bible is literally true, there were originally many gods. Only one of these, Yahweh, appears to have survived; the Bible does not record what happened to the other gods. They may have been forgotten, but do they still exist?

    b. If the truth is that there has only ever been one God, then passages in the Bible which point to several gods are false. That should lead us to suspect that other passages in the Bible may also be false.

    c. The Bible tells a story which may or may not contain truth. In itself, it neither proves nor disproves the existence of one or more gods.

    This section has not brought us to the point where we can confirm whether all, part or none of the Bible is true. However, it has allowed us to confirm that in the Jewish-Christian Bible there are several gods - and Yahweh was not always the most powerful

     "Stephen F. Roberts: 'When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.'"

    Thursday, March 3, 2011

    How does an animal know what they should evolve next?

    Every day, there are comments made by Creationists that are so idiotic, that they need to be commented on. Here is one such example:  "In the case of mating displays, why would the cuttlefish evolve an elaborate display of color for the purpose of attracting a mate when no cuttlefish originally had this ability or know that it would work?"

    Know that it would work? This demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of evolution. There is no knowledge of what is needed or will work. It is a random event. If the mutation provides a benefit, it gets passed on. If not, it dies off. A beneficial trait may also die off due to a bad set of circumstances. But there is no conscious knowledge of what is needed or required.

    It would be humorous except that millions of people actually listen to these idiots.

    Tuesday, March 1, 2011

    Is it science?

    This is from a Creationist website.

    Bait and Switch
    The third false argument is “bait and switch,” in which ambiguity (or some type of word play) is employed to alter the original meaning of a phrase or word such as “science” (which can have more than one definition).
    If the word “science” is used to mean empirical science (i.e., the study of what is observable in the present), all origins science explanations—both creationist and evolutionary approaches to explaining the past—are excluded.
    The ploy usually used is the idea that if a scientist teaches something, what is taught is “science.” Evolution is deemed to be science because many scientists teach it, yet what about when a creationist scientist teaches something? Inconsistently, the creationist teaching is mislabeled as “not science,” because a switched definition of science is used, one that allows only evolutionary teachings.
    When a slick salesman (or a smug scientist on TV) offers you a bill of goods, beware! An either-or fallacy may be facing you; it might beg its own question; or it might be a bait-and-switch. If you swallow the evolutionists’ sophistry, you will be buying into science fiction!

    However, this is completely idiotic. Science is not limited to observations in the present. And the definition of science is not what scientists teach. Lets take a look a the actual definition of science. Do you see the second and third definitions? It is looking at the physical world, not the supernatural one. Science, by its very definition, excludes supernatural explanations. Since Creationism or Intelligent Design rely on a supernatual Creator, they are outside the scope of science.


    [sahy-uhns] Show IPA
    a branch of knowledge or study dealing with a body of facts or truths systematically arranged and showing the operation of general laws: the mathematical sciences.
    systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation.
    any of the branches of natural or physical science.
    systematized knowledge in general.
    knowledge, as of facts or principles; knowledge gained by systematic study.
    a particular branch of knowledge.
    skill, especially reflecting a precise application of facts or principles; proficiency.
    As we can see, there is no requirement that a scientist teach something for it to be considered science. I realize theists have no use for science, but trying to change the meaning of of the word is rather extreme.

    Wouldn't it be nice?

    And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? (John 9:2)
    Notice how the Lord Jesus refused to be limited to the disciples’ dilemma when He replied:
    Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. (John 9:3)
    Of course, Christ knew that He was going to heal the blind man. The real purpose of his blindness was that one day the miraculous healing by Christ would manifest “the works of God” in the blind man’s life (which it did).

    Wouldn't it be nice if we could assume that would happen all the time? But we all know the reality. Blind people will not be cured by Jesus. Unless science develops a cure, the person will remain blind.

    Who Created God?

    Who created God?

    Posted on

    If a creator God needs to have been made by a creator, that creator would also need a creator who needs a creator … like an infinite chain of toppling domino's, which is an impossibility.

    It’s an illogical question

    by Don Batten
    The universe had a beginning; almost no one disputes that, because the laws of thermodynamics demand it: the universe is running down and it cannot have been running down forever, or it would have already run down. No stars would be still churning out energy and we would not be here.
    Some have proposed one universe giving birth to another, but again, there cannot be an infinite series of such births and deaths, as each cycle must have less energy available than the last and if this had been happening for eternity, the death of everything would have already happened.

    However, this is not why physics states. In fact, it is the complete opposite. Energy cannot be created or destroyed. The reason why the universe would eventually become void is due to the the expansion of the universe, not that the energy dissipates. My physics books stated that as far as we know, mass cannot be created or destroyed, it can only change form. Matter can become energy, and energy can become matter, but always according to e=m2. So, when a matter-antimatter reaction occurs, the mass of the matter (and antimatter) is converted to energy of equal mass, which propagates outward in various forms (heat, light, a kinetic shock wave, sound waves, etc), and gets spread out thinner and thinner throughout the cosmos, but never loses anything in quantity. If you ever found a way to capture all the energy that was released in the reaction, and condense it back together into matter, you would have the same amount of mass as the original amount of material used.

    Can theists at least argue from known points of reference?

    It is also trying to deflect from the actual point. If a creator needs a creator, ad nauseam, then not only is it is a silly point, it shows that the universe also does not need a creator. It simply can be.