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'A question for theists'

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    (Original post by janet9)
    By definition, faith means to believe in something without evidence - even if it contradicts science and outrages reason. I am a 'live, and let live' person; you believe in Islam and I respect you having that belief. But what I also respect, is openmindedness and free inquiry of ideas for their own sake. It's only when theists, with their tone, impose their beliefs over mine with an element of pride and superiority. What you quote is asserted without evidence - and so atheists and anti-theists can dismiss that, without evidence, surely.

    You should at least take the risk of thinking for yourself. Much more happiness, truth, beauty, and wisdom will come to you that way, so you won't have to blindly fire quotes from religious scripture to support your argument.
    I actually provided an answer to your question which was a perfectly valid question, but are you rejecting my answer? on accounts that it is "based on faith".
    I did not impose anything on you (if that is what you're implying). I'm just telling you that the claim you made (which let's face it, you don't have any evidence to back it really, you may see it the other way round too and I can understand that) of people not being told for 96000 years is wrong (if you are to take the words of the Quran as being true).
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    (Original post by Id and Ego seek)
    You failed to identify issues religion explains where science fails to. Is the existence of heaven or hell one of those examples? You're joking, right? A majority of Christians (Jehova being a shocking one) deny the existence of hell; Jesus tells us, the Kingdom of Heaven is in each of us (Luke 17:21). If the Kingdom of Heaven is within each of us, then how would hell exist as a place outside of us? Either you believe, or you do not. Either Jesus was right, or those who came after him were. Different holy books also have a different account of heaven / afterlife and hell / punishment. No wonder science doesn't have an answer to these 'questions'; science is consistent in their methods and findings.
    You didn't touch on any of my points whatsoever :facepalm2:

    Anyway, I'm not a christian, I was just giving an example. Science doesn't explain everything, nor will it, so it's not surprising that people will look elsewhere for answers (you should try it sometime). Religion doesn't have to "beat" science to become a competitor because they can both go hand in hand - that's the way many religious people live today.

    "Science without religion is lame and religion without science is blind." - Albert Einstein
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    (Original post by t0ffee)
    Why has the British ruling elite educated itself almost exclusively on classic Greek and Latin texts for centuries :rolleyes:

    And tbf, we'd probably all be better off if we lived in an agrarian, work to live, extended family group society.
    Good point.

    Even now we still do something similar, in that we look at the works of people who may have written 20 (or more) years ago in order to learn about a subject - the point is that alot can happen (particularly in scientific fields) in 20 years, and so there has to be some kind of "cut-off" point, when we say that something is too old to be relevant.

    I suppose there is also the argument that (for theists anyway) that God is eternal/timeless, and if the message he gives is true, it doesn't change no matter what time (and to who) he gives it, be it 1,000,000 years ago, or just last week. - The same principle can be applied by scientists to things like the laws of Physics (I'm not a physicist so I'm treading on thin ice here ) - it doesn't matter what time period they're operating in, they won't change. So really, whether or not they were discovered by Middle Eastern Goat farmers 2000 years ago, they're still the same and still correct (if thats what you believe).

    In an attempt to answer your question, my guess is that the British elite (and other elites throughout history) saw classical Greek and Roman stuff as the pinnacle of civilisation - a kind of lost golden age which no one could really emulate - so their writings were also of that kind of standard.
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    (Original post by A level Az)
    You didn't touch on any of my points whatsoever :facepalm2:
    You didn't answer mine: you've yet to give me an example.
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    It is a very interesting question. However, even though centuries have passed, there is one thing that remains constant: The Truth. What is Truth?
    This is the ultimate question. The Truth never dies, even though some hate it. The Truth never changes, even though with time civilizations have been wiped out. The Truth, is constant.

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    (Original post by TheGrinningSkull)
    The claim that current goat herders know more, that's a massive claim to make.
    Apart from in special cases, knowledge doesn't disappear, whereas new knowledge is developed all the time. It is therefore only natural that today's goat herders know more than those of two thousand years ago.

    I don't think holy books claim to be a substitute for science. If anything, to seek scientific knowledge. Proven wrong? I don't think so, and if what you claim to be "proven wrong" is a grey area then you cannot make such a claim.
    I was referring mostly to the frequent claims of "Scientific knowledge found in the Quran", where most conversations go something like this:

    Person A: The Quran shows how embryology works. How could they have known this 1400 years ago without divine intervention?
    Person B: But the Quran's account of embryology is flawed in [part X] and completely wrong in [part Y].
    Person A: [part X] is just a mistranslation, the true Quran is only in Arabic. [part Y] is a metaphor.

    and so on. Most holy books have certain phrases that are proven wrong by science, even small ones, so if you claim your book is 100% accurate then it's generally very hard to back that up.


    Also, areas of the holy book seem vague are backed up such as in Islam with the Hadith. Which is also an important and valid source.
    The Hadith is not considered the completely true word of Allah, and is hence disagreed upon by many people.

    I'm sorry, but it seems that you assume all religious people fall into the cherry picked categories and just bunged on an "etc" to give yourself a disclaimer.

    Sorry, not buying it.
    I was simply giving some reasons. Obviously I can't answer for all religious people in the world.

    Not everyone is "indoctrinated". Not everyone is taught to be uncritical, if anything, I'd think most are taught to question events and do research on topic matters.
    If this were true there would be more ex-theists than there currently are. To a critical and sceptical mind (which all should be), a holy book is not even close to a valid source, especially for a belief that can shape your whole life.

    If one does have fear in hell/God, then surely their belief is due to their own choosing. One can only have fear of God if they indeed believe in their hearts.
    Not necessarily. I might have been scared when I watched The Blair Witch Project, but that doesn't mean I thought it was true. Maybe someone who thought the witch would come and torture them if they didn't do something specific might do that thing just in case.

    Likewise with inherent belief, that is by choice is it not?
    Nope. You can't choose what you believe, and some people are more inclined to it than others. Some people have that "well there has to be something that started it all" mentality, others don't.
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    (Original post by Cerdog)
    Apart from in special cases, knowledge doesn't disappear, whereas new knowledge is developed all the time. It is therefore only natural that today's goat herders know more than those of two thousand years ago.



    I was referring mostly to the frequent claims of "Scientific knowledge found in the Quran", where most conversations go something like this:

    Person A: The Quran shows how embryology works. How could they have known this 1400 years ago without divine intervention?
    Person B: But the Quran's account of embryology is flawed in [part X] and completely wrong in [part Y].
    Person A: [part X] is just a mistranslation, the true Quran is only in Arabic. [part Y] is a metaphor.

    and so on. Most holy books have certain phrases that are proven wrong by science, even small ones, so if you claim your book is 100% accurate then it's generally very hard to back that up.




    The Hadith is not considered the completely true word of Allah, and is hence disagreed upon by many people.



    I was simply giving some reasons. Obviously I can't answer for all religious people in the world.



    If this were true there would be more ex-theists than there currently are. To a critical and sceptical mind (which all should be), a holy book is not even close to a valid source, especially for a belief that can shape your whole life.



    Not necessarily. I might have been scared when I watched The Blair Witch Project, but that doesn't mean I thought it was true. Maybe someone who thought the witch would come and torture them if they didn't do something specific might do that thing just in case.



    Nope. You can't choose what you believe, and some people are more inclined to it than others. Some people have that "well there has to be something that started it all" mentality, others don't.
    Hmm, it is true that new realities are always emerging, however, due to the nature of the book, the fact that it claims In Surah Nahl chapter 16 verse 89:"...And We have sent down to you the Book as clarification for all things and as guidance and mercy and good tidings for the Muslims." Whoever said new knowledge cannot be ascertained from the Book?

    It is a careful study of it that is required. Ask this question:
    Is the world really progressing? The 21st century has been so far, a low for the world. With the economic "depressions", countries almost going bankrupt, bloodshed spewing forth all over the World. Yes the world has technologically advanced. But did She ever consider the cost of her acts?
    They say in this world, "One man's freedom, is another man's slavery"...

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    (Original post by janet9)
    This is a question that I really want to know the answer to. And also, as I've read from Hitchens, that there is 100% proof out there that humans have been around for at least 100,000 years, though some say up to 200,000. Taking 100,000 for example, why was it that only in the last 4000 years did all these religious scriptures and revelations come about - why did the heavens and God just do nothing for 96,000 years? But I think that the bigger question here, is, why did all this happen in barbaric, illiterate parts of the Middle East?

    (From a no longer theist).
    You have a very interesting point.
    However, if it can be proven that there is anything wrong in the texts, if you find any contradictions or anything absolutely wrong, after having done a careful study, whereby verses are not taken in standalone, so you understand the System of meaning: In other words, say you studied a certain subject matter, you need to collect all the data pertaining to that subject, only then-once you have if you like, gathered up the "pearls of the necklace", can you locate the system of meaning, the thread that binds all the data together. Then you can understand the meaning of the verse clearly, otherwise everything will be open to misinterpretation, and that is not the methodology ought to be used when trying to understand something.

    Thanks
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    (Original post by Cerdog)
    Apart from in special cases, knowledge doesn't disappear, whereas new knowledge is developed all the time. It is therefore only natural that today's goat herders know more than those of two thousand years ago.



    I was referring mostly to the frequent claims of "Scientific knowledge found in the Quran", where most conversations go something like this:

    Person A: The Quran shows how embryology works. How could they have known this 1400 years ago without divine intervention?
    Person B: But the Quran's account of embryology is flawed in [part X] and completely wrong in [part Y].
    Person A: [part X] is just a mistranslation, the true Quran is only in Arabic. [part Y] is a metaphor.



    and so on. Most holy books have certain phrases that are proven wrong by science, even small ones, so if you claim your book is 100% accurate then it's generally very hard to back that up.




    The Hadith is not considered the completely true word of Allah, and is hence disagreed upon by many people.



    I was simply giving some reasons. Obviously I can't answer for all religious people in the world.



    If this were true there would be more ex-theists than there currently are. To a critical and sceptical mind (which all should be), a holy book is not even close to a valid source, especially for a belief that can shape your whole life.



    Not necessarily. I might have been scared when I watched The Blair Witch Project, but that doesn't mean I thought it was true. Maybe someone who thought the witch would come and torture them if they didn't do something specific might do that thing just in case.



    Nope. You can't choose what you believe, and some people are more inclined to it than others. Some people have that "well there has to be something that started it all" mentality, others don't.
    The hadith is considered a very important source alongside the Quran, there are many valid and true hadiths that you can't just chuck aside.

    How many times a day and how to pray is not mentioned in the Quran, that is why the hadiths are important as they explain what is not explained in the Quran.

    As a muslim, one should not only follow the Quran alone but also consult the hadiths.

    When faced with what appears to be a contradiction between the Qur'an and a scientific fact, there can only be two possibilities:
    1. That which is being construed as a scientific "fact" is not in actuality a fact.

    2. The verse that is being construed as being in conflict with science is being misinterpreted, misapplied, or misunderstood.

    Any claim being made that there is a contradiction between science and the Qur'an has to be evaluated individually. The factuality of the scientific claim needs to be assessed as well as the true meaning of the verse that is supposedly at variance with it.
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    (Original post by A level Az)
    The main reason I think (and quite an obvious one) is that the holy books offer something more than science and technology, things science can't explain. Yes science and technology is much more advanced now, but that doesn't make it a replacement for religion.
    The holy books are capable of 'explaining' things that we cannot explain through the scientific method because they don't need to bother with actual proof. Holy books just state things without any evidence; scientific explanations need actual evidence.


    (Original post by Calumcalum)
    I take seriously Jesus' views on ethics and philosophy because there is good warrant for believing that he is God.
    There is no evidence for this that doesn't come down to circular reasoning.


    (Original post by elkana)
    because the bible wasnt written by goat herders it was written by God
    Again, there is no evidence for this that is not circular (and is not even believed by most people who trust the Bible, as I understand).
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    (Original post by sulexk)
    Hmm, it is true that new realities are always emerging, however, due to the nature of the book, the fact that it claims In Surah Nahl chapter 16 verse 89:"...And We have sent down to you the Book as clarification for all things and as guidance and mercy and good tidings for the Muslims." Whoever said new knowledge cannot be ascertained from the Book?
    No one, but that would still make the people now more knowledgeable.

    It is a careful study of it that is required. Ask this question:
    Is the world really progressing? The 21st century has been so far, a low for the world. With the economic "depressions", countries almost going bankrupt, bloodshed spewing forth all over the World. Yes the world has technologically advanced. But did She ever consider the cost of her acts?
    They say in this world, "One man's freedom, is another man's slavery"...

    Yes. Yes it has. There have always been and will always be wars, suffering, economic crises, poverty and so on. Most other things in the world are far better than they were 2000 years ago. Life expectancy has increased dramatically, for example.

    (Original post by TheGrinningSkull)
    The hadith is considered a very important source alongside the Quran, there are many valid and true hadiths that you can't just chuck aside.

    How many times a day and how to pray is not mentioned in the Quran, that is why the hadiths are important as they explain what is not explained in the Quran.

    As a muslim, one should not only follow the Quran alone but also consult the hadiths.
    Yes, but the Quran takes priority. The Hadiths are important, but not considered the infallible word of God.

    When faced with what appears to be a contradiction between the Qur'an and a scientific fact, there can only be two possibilities:
    1. That which is being construed as a scientific "fact" is not in actuality a fact.

    2. The verse that is being construed as being in conflict with science is being misinterpreted, misapplied, or misunderstood.
    There's always option number three, that the Quran is wrong. This is one of the things that annoys me with a lot of Muslim arguments. You're essentially begging the question by asserting that the Quran is true, and then using that to show that it agrees with science, which is claimed as evidence for its truth. That is almost the exact opposite of critical thinking.

    Any claim being made that there is a contradiction between science and the Qur'an has to be evaluated individually. The factuality of the scientific claim needs to be assessed as well as the true meaning of the verse that is supposedly at variance with it.
    It's not like Arabic is untranslatable. There may be slight misunderstandings here and there but a lot of the time the whole idea of it is incorrect.
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    Most of the theists I know don't take medical or technical advice from scripture...

    I understand the claim that we wouldn't take advice on things like medicine from a goat herder now, so why would do we from ancient books written by goat herders. However if the goat herder had a particularly inspiring or interesting ethical/philosophical viewpoint, why should we not listen? Wisdom doesn't necessarily come from being literate and living in the modern world.

    EDIT: Wonder if I got negged by a Theist or an Atheist... You don't have to take the Bible literally guys!
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    (Original post by A level Az)
    Religion doesn't have to "beat" science to become a competitor because they can both go hand in hand
    Expect they don't though. In fact, I'd say they directly contradict one another. Science shows us that it is impossible for a man to walk on water, science shows us that it is impossible for a snake to talk, science shows us that it is impossible for a man to live to 950 (Noah).

    Yet all these events occur in the Bible, as well as all the 'supernatural' events in the other religous texts
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    (Original post by Calumcalum)
    I take seriously Jesus' views on ethics and philosophy because there is good warrant for believing that he is God.
    "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
    Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34

    Jesus Cried this upon his final hours, before dying, revealing before the world that God's son was mortal, He had lived the flawed life of man and faced death alone, as we all must do. Jesus cannot be both God and Flawed, for God is not Flawed.

    "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."
    Matthew 5:48
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    (Original post by AdvanceAndVanquish)
    There is no evidence for this that doesn't come down to circular reasoning.
    Cool.

    (Original post by Sly Blade)
    "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
    Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34

    Jesus Cried this upon his final hours, before dying, revealing before the world that God's son was mortal, He had lived the flawed life of man and faced death alone, as we all must do. Jesus cannot be both God and Flawed, for God is not Flawed.

    "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."
    Matthew 5:48
    Read Psalm 22 the whole way through and see what happens at the end. Jesus was alluding to it to emphasise his expected vindication, not to distinguish himself from God.
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    (Original post by elkana)
    because the bible wasnt written by goat herders it was written by God
    Christians don't believe that. They believe it was written by man, with the influence of God.
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    (Original post by Id and Ego seek)
    Doesn't mean much.
    Of course it means much. It may not be true, it may not even have any rational warrant, but it seems quite clear that it is contentful, that it expresses something other than complete jibberish.

    I take seriously Confucius' views on ethics and philosophy because there is good warrant for believing that he is God or at least a divine prophet of the true God, which isn't Yahweh.
    OK then.

    Wait, you do you mean you take his views seriously because it said he was God in the Bible, or do you mean his views on ethics and philosophy are proof he is God?
    I don't mean either.
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    [QUOTE=Calumcalum;37008444]Cool.
    QUOTE]

    So you have accepted that there is no reason to believe that Jesus is God that is not based on circular logic?
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    (Original post by Cerdog)


    Yes, but the Quran takes priority. The Hadiths are important, but not considered the infallible word of God.
    The Quran takes priority when there is contradiction with the hadith. There's a difference.


    There's always option number three, that the Quran is wrong. This is one of the things that annoys me with a lot of Muslim arguments. You're essentially begging the question by asserting that the Quran is true, and then using that to show that it agrees with science, which is claimed as evidence for its truth. That is almost the exact opposite of critical thinking.
    Not necessarily, you want to see why there is this supposed "contradiction", all the time (for myself), I have found that there has always been an answer, and usually it does boil down to the meaning, or the context. That is why you do have to do research around the topic and see what is going on.


    It's not like Arabic is untranslatable. There may be slight misunderstandings here and there but a lot of the time the whole idea of it is incorrect.
    Arabic is not untranslatable, correct. However, you run into problems when you have one word that can have 5+ different meanings depending on the context. And a lot of the time it does come down to using the right words, and I myself, as I understand English more, sometimes feel something is not right so I check up different sources as to what this could possibly mean or why was this word used and not that, and so forth.
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    (Original post by AdvanceAndVanquish)
    So you have accepted that there is no reason to believe that Jesus is God that is not based on circular logic?
    No; I'm not particularly persuaded by assertion.

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