Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Atheist - Defend your faith

I didn't realize that bloging on LinkedIn was a thing, but now I do after reading one by Jim Silence. His blog is supposed to be a challenge to atheists to defend our 'faith'... With him starting with such a poor starting point, lets say that I don't have very high hopes for anything that follows.
Okay, it is very simple. Not one atheist, not one can give an answer for their faith in nothing. Because that is exactly what it is. Faith in nothing.
What is he on about? Atheism is not faith in nothing. It is the lack of belief in gods. Atheists can and do believe in any number of other things. Call that faith if you will, but Jim starts out showing that he doesn't know what he's talking about.
They are not at all scientific or objective. They completely dismiss the scientific method in both their story of creation, as well as the Biblical account.
Um, how? The Biblical account of creation fails the scientific method, and that's a big reason many atheists reject that creation story (not to mention the many errors within). Also, many atheists love science and try to be as scientific and objective about as many things as they can. That's another reason many of us reject religious claims.

But what is this 'atheist creation story' Jim refers to? Atheism doesn't have a creation story. The closest thing atheism has to a creation story is the statement 'I won't believe any creations story until you show me the proof'. Maybe Jim thinks that the Big Bang is atheism's creations story, but it's not. The Big Bang is the scientific explanation for the universe. With most atheists being scientifically minded, that's why most atheists accept the Big Bang. But one can be an atheist and not accept the Big Bang without being any less an atheist.
They ignore, conjure, and falsify facts to fit their agenda. To prove that is what they do all you have to do is question them.
That sounds a lot more like the theists I've debated, but I'll bite... Question me!
The next time someone starts babbling on about big bangs, or evolution, or any such nonsense, ask them for proof? 
Wow... I sure hope that the theist has a couple free hours, because there really is that much proof. The Big Bang has red-shifting, cosmic microwave background radiation, images taken of incredibly old galaxies, distribution and concentration of elements to name but a few. And when it comes to evolution there's even more. Fossil record, vestigial traits, our own selective breeding, DNA evidence, the distribution of species, and the list goes on and on.
Ask them who programmed DNA? 
Who says it needs to have been consciously programmed? DNA arose from chemistry and the long march of time. What about RNA then? The origins were the same as DNA, but is Jim really prepared to argue that one was God and the other was natural?
Ask them to explain C14 in diamonds? 
In what concentrations? Carbon 14 is used for (accurately) dating things in the thousands of years. But it is only used for dating organic molecules. So if you are trying to date a diamond using Carbon 14, you are already doing it wrong. Additionally, the referenced 'C14 in diamonds' usually places the age as 20,000-40,000 years old which is still far older than the 6,000 or so years old those making this argument often claim the Earth to be. But what about the C14? There's no one size fits all answer, but it is usually either a faulty reading, or contamination of the sample from the surrounding soil or other organic traces.
Ask them to tell you what Job's Behemoth was?
Um... Isn't that the believer's job and not mine? I suppose this is supposed to be a 'gotcha' moment to claim that Job was describing a dinosaur. But the description offered in the verses does not entirely fit with any one known dinosaur. Sure, certain lines fit a dinosaur. But other lines fit other creatures alive and dead just as well. So my guess is that Job is describing some sort of mythical beast.
Ask them which chemical reactions, caused life, emotion, and free will? 
Seriously? Science has an idea about life, though it hasn't conclusively proven it yet. Look up abiogenesis some time... As for emotion, that's controlled by the brain. Free will? That sort of depends of what you mean by 'free will'. But if you are talking about the ability to make choices, again, that's the working of the brain.
Ask them who defines truth, and if there is good and evil? 
Who says there is no good or evil if there is no God? Good and evil are comparative terms that we have created to describe preferential situations and those that aren't. Good and bad are also no more than comparative terms. Who defines truth though? We all do! As a species and society we have slowly defined and refined morals. That is very well documented, so where is the mystery that Jim seems to think there is?
Ask them why they hate God, and what they do with their guilt?
I don't hate God. It's impossible to hate something that doesn't exist. Though the God character is pretty damn immoral and evil. But no, I don't hate God any more than I could hate a unicorn or pixie.

As for my guilt? If I wrong someone I make it right. If they forgive me, and I've made reparations I can learn from that to be a better person. Actually making amends is a far better system than passing your guilt to a third party without having to actually worry about whoever you actually wronged.
They have no answers. 
But we do have answers... To all of them!
 That’s why we are here in this forum. 
Actually, I'm here because this story came up in my google alerts...
 That’s why we don't talk to them at their level, because they try to bring us into their ignorance with them. 
I'm sorry, is it opposite day? Because this sounds more like it's talking about the average religious
apologist that I've debated. All talk and no substance...
They have no answer for why they believe in nothing.
Well, we don't 'believe in nothing' so there's that tiny little insignificant fact to consider...
I do have an answer for why I believe.
It's probably not a very good one though if it's anything like the reasons every other believer has given me.

But here's one very important point to consider... None of the questions Jim posed mater. Atheism doesn't claim to have answers to any of them. Atheism is only the lack of belief in God(s). The questions posed are independent positions/queries. They can all be easily answered by looking to science, history, logic and reason, or many other routes. But a lack of answers wouldn't impact atheism any more than a lack of concrete would make a pillow any less of a pillow.


-Brain Hulk

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