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Richard Dawkins' Enemies of Reason, Monday, Channel 4, 8pm. watch

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    (Original post by Agamemnon)
    All kinds of things, fossils, geological evidence, radioactive dating and so on.
    That is precisely my point. Take radioactive dating, for example. It only works by extrapolating from current conditions. So too with fossils and geological evidence, we extrapolate back from current conditions. However, if God created the world in 7 days with all forms of animal life in place, etc, it would, by necessity have been created in a fully formed state. So, God could have created fossils and geological "evidence" as part of the world. Science cannot prove or even imply to the contrary, can it?
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    (Original post by Agamemnon)
    I know you can't prove anything, but the evidence is overwhelmingly with the people who believe that the earth is very old, not less than 10,000 years old.
    Agreed. Call me a pedant :p:
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    (Original post by UniOfLife)
    That is precisely my point. Take radioactive dating, for example. It only works by extrapolating from current conditions. So too with fossils and geological evidence, we extrapolate back from current conditions. However, if God created the world in 7 days with all forms of animal life in place, etc, it would, by necessity have been created in a fully formed state. So, God could have created fossils and geological "evidence" as part of the world. Science cannot prove or even imply to the contrary, can it?
    No, but ironically enough theology can. What kind of God would deliberately and elaborately lie to the whole of Creation?
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    (Original post by Agent Smith)
    No, but ironically enough theology can. What kind of God would deliberately and elaborately lie to the whole of Creation?
    So here we enter a theological discussion and start to debate the nature of what a supernatural god would do. That's fine.

    My point is only that Dawkins cannot use science to disprove God or religion or even to argue against sprituality. He can only argue for his interpretation of reality as he sees it from what must be a theological and non-scientific basis. Thus, I ask again, what is the difference between Dawkins printing books to convert people to his belief system and missionaries who do the same?
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    (Original post by UniOfLife)
    Thus, I ask again, what is the difference between Dawkins printing books to convert people to his belief system and missionaries who do the same?
    Very little, except Dawkins doesn't actually threaten people.
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    (Original post by Agent Smith)
    Very little, except Dawkins doesn't actually threaten people.
    I dunno about that: "Religion is the root of all evil" sounds pretty threatening to me :p:
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    (Original post by UniOfLife)
    That is precisely my point. Take radioactive dating, for example. It only works by extrapolating from current conditions. So too with fossils and geological evidence, we extrapolate back from current conditions. However, if God created the world in 7 days with all forms of animal life in place, etc, it would, by necessity have been created in a fully formed state. So, God could have created fossils and geological "evidence" as part of the world. Science cannot prove or even imply to the contrary, can it?
    You're being absolutely pathetic here. I suggest you stop while you have face. You're talking like one of those silly conspiracy theorists, but unlike the other conspiracy theorists, your aim is not a government, but God.
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    (Original post by UniOfLife)
    I dunno about that: "Religion is the root of all evil" sounds pretty threatening to me :p:
    *sighs*
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    (Original post by UniOfLife)
    So here we enter a theological discussion and start to debate the nature of what a supernatural god would do. That's fine.

    My point is only that Dawkins cannot use science to disprove God or religion or even to argue against sprituality. He can only argue for his interpretation of reality as he sees it from what must be a theological and non-scientific basis. Thus, I ask again, what is the difference between Dawkins printing books to convert people to his belief system and missionaries who do the same?
    Again, this is pathetic. It's not 'his beleif system'. How stupid are you?
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    (Original post by 1.9.8.4.)
    Again, this is pathetic. It's not 'his beleif system'. How stupid are you?
    But surely he believes there isn't sufficient evidence to justify faith in God.
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    (Original post by 1.9.8.4.)
    Again, this is pathetic. It's not 'his beleif system'. How stupid are you?
    So it isn't a system or he doesn't believe it? :confused:

    I'm not being pathetic or stupid. Tell me, if God created the world in 7 days with all life fully formed on it, would he not have had to create the oil reserves already in place (as they take many thousands of years to form) or trees already fully grown, or mountain ranges in place etc etc. Are you not forced to agree that if God did create the world in 7 days it would not be noticable to the creations that the world had only just been created?

    Do you not also have to agree that science is based on empirecal evidence, i.e. by making observations and creating theories to explain those observations? Are you not then forced to agree that science works by assuming that things do not change i.e. that if a certain element has a certain half-life it has always had that half-life, or that if gravity is of strength x today it was always of that strength?

    Do you not then see that science cannot prove or imply anything about the past if God had created a fully formed world with operating rules? It isn't being pathetic or conspiratorial at all. It is simple logical steps. Surely, as a proponent of science and logic, you should challenge these steps rather than dismiss them like one would if one had an agenda to adhere to?
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    (Original post by 1.9.8.4.)
    I don't think that's true. Recent polls have found that around half of Americans are creationists, and if in a developed, free country such as the United States, such a high proportion of people interpret Genesis literally, I doubt Christians in Africa and Latin America think differently.
    Latin America is predominantly Catholic. RC is not creationist.

    Africa's different.
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    (Original post by Agent Smith)
    But surely he believes there isn't sufficient evidence to justify faith in God.
    Like I said before, there are times when Dawkin's sort of steers of the rails, but most of the time, he does make it very clear that his position is one of a sceptic agnostic.

    To call Dawkin's general stance a 'belief' would be silly in my opinion, although there are moments when he does make a leap of faith.
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    (Original post by Agamemnon)
    Only a small minority of Christians believe the earth was created in, literally, seven days, or that the earth has existed for less than 10,000 years, for that matter.
    Very very untrue. The polls indeed show that almost 50% of Americans believe that. Doesn't their president too?

    Anyway, as I'm sure you can imagine this is probably the central belief in Africa and other parts of the Christian world. In England, we're not as stupid which is as many of us don't buy into it. This relates nicely to the 'Are Americans stupid' thread actually.
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    (Original post by Agamemnon)
    I have the paperback version, which is different. Could you tell me the chapter and so on?
    The God Hypothesis, the very end of the bit on polytheism.
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    (Original post by 1.9.8.4.)
    Like I said before, there are times when Dawkin's sort of steers of the rails, but most of the time, he does make it very clear that his position is one of a sceptic agnostic.

    To call Dawkin's general stance a 'belief' would be silly in my opinion, although there are moments when he does make a leap of faith.
    It's plainly a belief. You can't assert that P is true without believing P.

    You say that Dawkins sometimes steers off the rails. Why can't he, a champion of science and reason, just think clearly all the time?
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    (Original post by UniOfLife)
    I ask again, what is the difference between Dawkins printing books to convert people to his belief system and missionaries who do the same?
    Dawkins isn't asking people to believe in anything. He has no belief system when it comes to god - that's the whole point of atheism. He is asking them to think and use evidence to buttress their beliefs. If the evidence leads them to religion then so be it, but, of course, that is unlikely for most.
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    (Original post by Agent Smith)
    But surely he believes there isn't sufficient evidence to justify faith in God.
    Just as you probably and hopefully believe that there isn't sufficient evidence for Zeus or wotan. I wouldn't call it apart of your belief system though. Would you?
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    (Original post by Mensan1)
    Dawkins isn't asking people to believe in anything. He has no belief system when it comes to god - that's the whole point of atheism. He is asking them to think and use evidence to buttress their beliefs. If the evidence leads them to religion then so be it, but, of course, that is unlikely for most.
    Dawkins believes "there is almost certainly no God". This IS A BELIEF. Try reading Dawkins.
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    (Original post by 1.9.8.4.)
    Like I said before, there are times when Dawkin's sort of steers of the rails, but most of the time, he does make it very clear that his position is one of a sceptic agnostic.

    To call Dawkin's general stance a 'belief' would be silly in my opinion, although there are moments when he does make a leap of faith.
    So when does he steer of the rails? And what's this leap of faith you talk of?
 
 
 
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