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What a world without God means

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    (Original post by Good bloke)
    Indeed, the documented deeds of the Abrahamic god are replete with particularly nasty and arbitrary deeds like destroying whole cities and wiping out mankind and visiting plagues on people. This is not consistent with the claims of mercy and benevolence.
    Even going beyond the texts themselves, if we are to ignore all the urging to genocide, and into the real, physical, present - the world we live in and the universe we encounter everyday - at best it is indifferent.

    I don't know where consciousness came from. We (humans) seem to have attained a higher level than any of our animal brothers and sisters, and some people just can't handle it. They lose all rationality, get handed a book and decide it has all of the answers.

    Still, as long as they don't hurt anybo.... oh....

    er.....

    nevermind.


    No one ever committed murder in the name of Spinoza or Russell.
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    (Original post by k.russell)
    you could also say 'Don't base your happiness on attempting to appease a non-existent deity'
    That's if you think God is non-existent. It's such a complicated argument.
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    (Original post by SunnysideSea)
    It means, simply, that what anyone does in life is intrinsically devoid of all purpose.

    Yep, pretty much :cute:

    We exist to advance our own species.

    However, our consciousness allows us to enjoy our lives instead of dedicating it to the good of the species if we so wish - basically, do whatever you want. It won't matter in the end, but just enjoy the present, and don't waste it trying to reach the 'next stage', because we won't know whether it exists until this life ends.
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    (Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
    I have never said anything "inconsistent" with agnostic atheism so stop trying to make it look like I'm hiding something that I know contradicts that view.

    There is no evidence for an objective morality and invoking God to resolve it does nothing because it simply gives rise to the Euthyphro Dilemma.

    What lends itself to God's existence? Naturalism certainly doesn't.
    I never said you did say anything inconsistent with your atheism, I said the opposite of that. I was explaining why you would never even suggest the existence of objective morality, even though we all live as though there are things that are truly right and wrong.

    And actually, I know a little about Plato's Euthyphro Dilemma. That is not what we believe actually. We don't believe an objective moral standard exists outside of God, nor do we believe God arbitrarily came up with objective morality. We believe that it is him. His nature is moral. Right and wrong come from a consistency with his moral nature. "God does not lie, therefore, lying is wrong. God does not steal, therefore stealing is wrong..." etc

    Doesn't answer all questions, but it works as an objective standard, while being consistent with God's aseity and other things revealed in the bible.
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    (Original post by Pride)
    I was explaining why you would never even suggest the existence of objective morality, even though we all live as though there are things that are truly right and wrong.
    Of course we do, and these things are a function of the society and time we live in. Our morality changes.

    Capital punishment is generally frowned on in Europe these days, but still generally endorsed in the USA, where Christianity is pretty aggressive and often vitriolic. It was generally endorsed here, too, a hundred years ago.

    Go back three hundred years and Christians generally were not averse to a bit of slavery.

    Go back rather further and you'll find they were keen on getting rid of witches by rather violent means, and equally keen on torturing apostates and punishing recusants. They have stopped doing that, fortunately, as the rest of us don't tolerate it. It can't be because their scriptures have started to give them a different message, can it, as it is inspired by their merciful god?

    Cross the Atlantic and go back 500 years and you'll find several great civilisations that were quite keen on human sacrifice. Go back a bit further and you'll find Europeans doing it too.

    Morality is man-made, and varies, quite rapidly, over time and by location, despite the attempts of religious wowsers who wrongly insist it is objective and unchanging.

    So, as a Christian, tell me: were the early church leaders wrong to endorse slavery and capital punishment, or are the modern church leaders wrong to decry them? And if church leaders are or were wrong on those issues, how can you trust them on others?
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    (Original post by Pride)
    "God does not lie, therefore, lying is wrong. God does not steal, therefore stealing is wrong..." etc
    Unfortunately, that argument comes to a grinding halt when you get to God commits genocide, therefore that is OK; God destroys whole cities, therefore wholesale destruction of cities and the people in them is OK; God incites people to human sacrifice, therefore human sacrifice is OK, doesn't it?
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    (Original post by Good bloke)
    Unfortunately, that argument comes to a grinding halt when you get to God commits genocide, therefore that is OK; God destroys whole cities, therefore wholesale destruction of cities and the people in them is OK; God incites people to human sacrifice, therefore human sacrifice is OK, doesn't it?
    Well God is a judge too (as the bible says, more than once), so he carries out judgements. That includes killing people.

    Just as no human law would charge an executioner a murderer, God is not charged with murder.

    Going further, you don't believe you deserve hell. Christians on the other hand believe we all do. So if you died and you were sent there, you might object to God's judgement, but all you would have is your subjective opinion.
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    (Original post by Pride)
    Well God is a judge too (as the bible says, more than once), so he carries out judgements. That includes killing people.

    Just as no human law would charge an executioner a murderer, God is not charged with murder.

    Going further, you don't believe you deserve hell. Christians on the other hand believe we all do. So if you died and you were sent there, you might object to God's judgement, but all you would have is your subjective opinion.
    You didn't answer my questions.
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    (Original post by Pride)
    I never said you did say anything inconsistent with your atheism, I said the opposite of that. I was explaining why you would never even suggest the existence of objective morality, even though we all live as though there are things that are truly right and wrong.
    What's surprising about living your life by a set of moral standards? We live by them while admitting that they're subjective and subject to change.

    How people view morality even changes according to the situation. Most people will say murder is wrong yet many of them will be more than happy to say it was the correct action in war and if inflicted upon a criminal, dictator or paedophile for example.

    And actually, I know a little about Plato's Euthyphro Dilemma. That is not what we believe actually. We don't believe an objective moral standard exists outside of God, nor do we believe God arbitrarily came up with objective morality. We believe that it is him. His nature is moral. Right and wrong come from a consistency with his moral nature. "God does not lie, therefore, lying is wrong. God does not steal, therefore stealing is wrong..." etc

    Doesn't answer all questions, but it works as an objective standard, while being consistent with God's aseity and other things revealed in the bible.
    While it may seem you have somewhat resolved the dilemma to someone who has never come across it, those familiar with Euthyphro can see you've done nothing of the sort. You have just reworded the second horn of the dilemma: that actions done/commanded by God are right and morality is therefore entirely arbitrary.

    Appealing to his nature doesn't resolve it either. Is his nature good because he says it is or is it good regardless of what he thinks of it?
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    (Original post by Good bloke)
    Of course we do, and these things are a function of the society and time we live in. Our morality changes.
    Interesting way to change the subject to something I wasn't talking about.

    Capital punishment is generally frowned on in Europe these days, but still generally endorsed in the USA, where Christianity is pretty aggressive and often vitriolic. It was generally endorsed here, too, a hundred years ago.

    Go back three hundred years and Christians generally were not averse to a bit of slavery.

    Go back rather further and you'll find they were keen on getting rid of witches by rather violent means, and equally keen on torturing apostates and punishing recusants. They have stopped doing that, fortunately, as the rest of us don't tolerate it. It can't be because their scriptures have started to give them a different message, can it, as it is inspired by their merciful god?

    Cross the Atlantic and go back 500 years and you'll find several great civilisations that were quite keen on human sacrifice. Go back a bit further and you'll find Europeans doing it too.

    Morality is man-made, and varies, quite rapidly, over time and by location, despite the attempts of religious wowsers who wrongly insist it is objective and unchanging.

    So, as a Christian, tell me: were the early church leaders wrong to endorse slavery and capital punishment, or are the modern church leaders wrong to decry them? And if church leaders are or were wrong on those issues, how can you trust them on others?
    Well what counts as an "early church leader"? Which ones are you talking about? And what do you mean by slavery? Obviously there are different standards in "servanthood". There are some jobs at the moment that some would consider to be slavery. What does the bible mean when it says the word "slave" in its context?

    More importantly, you just can't judge God by looking at people who profess to follow him. What does the bible say? We should follow that.

    And finally, but most importantly, you're appealing to completely subjective ideas in order to condemn professing Christians and the God described in the bible. All you have is your opinion. Your post amounts to:
    "I don't agree with what you Christians believe!"
    I could just reply with, "That's nice."
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    (Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
    What's surprising about living your life by a set of moral standards? We live by them while admitting that they're subjective and subject to change.
    Sometimes there's a difference between what people profess to believe is true, and what they live according to.

    While it may seem you have somewhat resolved the dilemma to someone who has never come across it, those familiar with Euthyphro can see you've done nothing of the sort. You have just reworded the second horn of the dilemma: that actions done/commanded by God are right and morality is therefore entirely arbitrary.

    Appealing to his nature doesn't resolve it either. Is his nature good because he says it is or is it good regardless of what he thinks of it?
    No no no, his nature is good. That's all. Morality is God's nature. I could easily say, "Is the moral standard outside of God good because the standard says it is, or because it has another standard outside of itself?" The question implies there can be one standalone standard. You can't just shift the goalpost.
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    (Original post by Ladymusiclover)
    That's if you think God is non-existent. It's such a complicated argument.
    It is complicated, I have to say though I wholeheartedly disagree with not basing your happiness on your life because your life can be taken away from you. What sort of a statement is that?,
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    (Original post by Pride)
    I never said you did say anything inconsistent with your atheism, I said the opposite of that. I was explaining why you would never even suggest the existence of objective morality, even though we all live as though there are things that are truly right and wrong.

    And actually, I know a little about Plato's Euthyphro Dilemma. That is not what we believe actually. We don't believe an objective moral standard exists outside of God, nor do we believe God arbitrarily came up with objective morality. We believe that it is him. His nature is moral. Right and wrong come from a consistency with his moral nature. "God does not lie, therefore, lying is wrong. God does not steal, therefore stealing is wrong..." etc

    Doesn't answer all questions, but it works as an objective standard, while being consistent with God's aseity and other things revealed in the bible.
    (Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
    What's surprising about living your life by a set of moral standards? We live by them while admitting that they're subjective and subject to change.

    How people view morality even changes according to the situation. Most people will say murder is wrong yet many of them will be more than happy to say it was the correct action in war and if inflicted upon a criminal, dictator or paedophile for example.



    While it may seem you have somewhat resolved the dilemma to someone who has never come across it, those familiar with Euthyphro can see you've done nothing of the sort. You have just reworded the second horn of the dilemma: that actions done/commanded by God are right and morality is therefore entirely arbitrary.

    Appealing to his nature doesn't resolve it either. Is his nature good because he says it is or is it good regardless of what he thinks of it?
    Unfortunately Plantagenet beat me to it here. Your solution is no different to one of the two forks posed by the dilemma, you are still saying it is moral because it's done by God. Thus morality is still an arbitrary construct under that viewpoint.
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    (Original post by Pride)
    No no no, his nature is good. That's all. Morality is God's nature. I could easily say, "Is the moral standard outside of God good because the standard says it is, or because it has another standard outside of itself?" The question implies there can be one standalone standard. You can't just shift the goalpost.
    I'm not shifting any goalposts and you haven't resolved the dilemma. Either God's nature is good because it just is (independent of him) or he has defined his nature as good in which case morality is entirely arbitrary.
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    (Original post by Pride)
    Well what counts as an "early church leader"? Which ones are you talking about? And what do you mean by slavery?
    Let's try Paul and the normal definition of slavery, where the slave is owned by the master and has no freedom to live and work where they wish to, shall we?

    Paul sent a slave back to his owner, merely offering to pay any costs that the slave had caused his master. He is certainly endorsing slavery.

    And in Ephesians 6:5 he says Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear and sincerity of heart, just as you would show to Christ.

    If that isn't a clear endorsement of the sort of slavery we would recognise as such then I'm a Dutchman.
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    (Original post by Pride)
    No no no, his nature is good. That's all. Morality is God's nature.
    Clearly, then, the god that wiped out mankind except for Noah's family, destroyed the cities of the plain and visited plagues on the Egyptians is a bit of an arbitrary and nasty so and so. But, by definition, good. It's all a bit circular, isn't it?
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    (Original post by Inexorably)
    Unfortunately Plantagenet beat me to it here. Your solution is no different to one of the two forks posed by the dilemma, you are still saying it is moral because it's done by God. Thus morality is still an arbitrary construct under that viewpoint.
    Nope, I further clarified what I said later.

    (Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
    I'm not shifting any goalposts and you haven't resolved the dilemma. Either God's nature is good because it just is (independent of him) or he has defined his nature as good in which case morality is entirely arbitrary.
    Yes you are shifting the goalpost. I can show you. Let me quote you specifically.

    "Either God's nature is good because it just is (independent of him)" - you see you say "independent of him". So are you not saying that one option is that there could be a literal standard outside of God? Do you agree that I have represented that option correctly?
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    (Original post by Pride)
    Yes you are shifting the goalpost. I can show you. Let me quote you specifically.

    "Either God's nature is good because it just is (independent of him)" - you see you say "independent of him". So are you not saying that one option is that there could be a literal standard outside of God? Do you agree that I have represented that option correctly?
    I am not shifting any goalpost, you are literally rewording one of the dilemma's horns and thus have resolved nothing.

    Well yes, that's the point of the dilemma. There can only be two options so if you are saying there is no standard independent of God then by default you are saying that things are only moral because they are done/commanded by God which makes morality arbitrary.
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    (Original post by Pride)

    No no no, his nature is good. That's all. Morality is God's nature. I could easily say, "Is the moral standard outside of God good because the standard says it is, or because it has another standard outside of itself?" The question implies there can be one standalone standard. You can't just shift the goalpost.
    You haven't really refuted the dilemma, but rather seem to have reworded it -

    "However, this counterargument really falls into the first category. The question becomes: is something good because it is part of god's nature or is it part of god's nature because it is good. The false dichotomy can be better stated as the following true dichotomy: when we define 'good,' do we start from god (or his nature, etc.), or do we start from something else. If we choose the former, good is arbitrary, as good then stems from whatever god happens to be (there is no guarantee that justice, honor etc. being good). If we choose the latter, then goodness is independent of god. The choice, as always, is between arbitrary or external good."

    http://wiki.ironchariots.org/index.p...God.27s_nature

    viddy9 can shed some light on to this.
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    not sure if this has been said I have not read the whole 11 pages but I am going to go in the opposite direction. If a god exists then life has no purpose.

    This may throw you a bit, but just because god has decided that my purpose is X how does that make it my purpose or have any more meaning? purpose and meaning are simply self defined terms we create. Quite often we give our own meanings to things and our own purpose.

    If their is no god no outside force nothing to control this world beyond what is within, then I as an intelligent individual arguably have a duty a purpose to the betterment of mankind. If it is all part of a divine plan and events pre determined to gods purpose then how does anything I do matter?

    If this is the only life we get, and I save lives and enrich lives, then My life has a purpose. If we get multiple lives or have an eternal after life then all the value of all the lives I save or influence become literally worthless. any number divided by infinity is zero. If I see a starving man and buy him/cook him dinner in a short life span that is something that counts. in an infinite lifetime this is meaningless.

    the afterlife and deities do not add meaning or purpose to life they detract from it.
 
 
 
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