Religion - With or against?

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Now, before I post anything here, I just want you all to know that I’m not an atheist, nor am I Christian, I’m agnostic. For all of you who don’t know what that word means, it’s basically not outright saying “Look, religion is stupid and God isn’t real”, but basically I live my life how I want to, and when I die what happens happens.

Now, I have found a few flaws in the basic Christianity religion. I’m not a wiz about the whole 7 days thing, but of what I can remember, on the first day God created the Earth, then 5 more days past by, and then on the 7th day God created man, yet scientists using whatever they have put the Earth to be around 4.5 billion years old, yet they have only found evidence of humans existence on Earth to be only a few hundred thousand years old. Seems a bit more than 7 days if you ask me.

With that now said, scientists have also proven Darwin’s evolution theory wrong recently, too. Using their little gadgets to check on fossils from different ages (Jurassic, etc) found that in one age all they found were single-celled organisms, and in the very next age they found fossils of fully developed animals and creatures. Darwin states that we all evolved from a single similar ancestor, in our case everything on the face of this planet evolved from a common micro-organism, yet in under a few million years, we went from single-celled organisms to fully developed animals and creatures.

Tell me what you think. As I said, I’m agnostic, I don’t go one way or the other. I just thought I’d share a little slice of what I think about day to day.

g0su

 
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I am all types. I belieive God made the Earth, then the organisms. EVOLUTION! Here we are. :)

 
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With that now said, scientists have also proven Darwin’s evolution theory wrong recently, too. Using their little gadgets to check on fossils from different ages (Jurassic, etc) found that in one age all they found were single-celled organisms, and in the very next age they found fossils of fully developed animals and creatures.

Whoever told you that lied to you.

Presumably they were referring to the Cambrian Explosion which is certainly not a problem for the theory of evolution, much as some sections of the religious community may try to paint it as such.

 
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g0su – while I appreciate your topic, I’m wondering how this is any different from the various Religion, Christianity, and Evolution topics that we already have here. I realize that you’re new to this forum, so please take a second to read over the ends of those threads, as well as peruse some of the other threads on our first few pages. If you still think you have a different point/argument to make, then please feel free to continue. I just would rather keep an older, well-developed thread going than create a bunch of new ones. Thanks!

 
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Well, I’m an atheist and believe the theory of evolution over some 7 day story, religion is ment to be used as a guide, not literally. I do have a slightly cynical view on religion when people tell me I’ll go to hell, but I don’t care.

 
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Well, how do we know these aren’t days in God-Time? Everything appears in the Bible in the same order as science.

 
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Well, how do we know these aren’t days in God-Time? Everything appears in the Bible in the same order as science.

It is quite interesting that plants formed first, then aquatic life, then wildlife on land, and then humans in both the Bible and our current model of evolution.

 
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The details of the genesis account are entirely incorrect, though.

Birds did not come before land animals, for example.

 
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I agree that Genesis can’t be taken literally. The whole fish and birds thing actually arises quite interestingly (and rather too symbolic to be taken literally.)

Day I: Light separated from darkness Day IV: Stars and moon created to make Light

Day II: Water separated from Air Day V: Fish and birds created to fill Water and Air

Day III: Water separated from Land Day VI: Animals and humans created to fill Land

It seems more like a poem showing that God created the Earth…

 
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Agreed. It seems to me to be dealing with a hypothetical “ascent to man” sort of theme.

 
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I agree that Genesis can’t be taken literally.

Apparently, nothing in religion can be taken literally. Every time science proves something beyond doubt, another section gets placed as hypothetical. Most intelligent Christians now believe in Evolution, believing that God simply created our single celled organisms and gave the whole thing a hearty prod, here and there. At least, the few devoted Christians I know seem to believe that.

So, you know, what happens if we prove all the non-unprovable stuff wrong? Will the entire Bible become a big hypothetical tale?

 
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So, you know, what happens if we prove all the non-unprovable stuff wrong? Will the entire Bible become a big hypothetical tale?

There certainly isn’t enough empirical stuff related to the nature of God to really prove him wrong. Since that is basically what modern science is (mostly empiricism), I doubt that it will ever be possible to prove or disprove a religion scientifically.

 
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A logical impossibility, Slipstream. You cannot prove a negative.

What science does is give verifiable explanations for observed phenomena. That is, it explains the things we can actually see. It cannot be used in any way to prove a deity does not exist.

 
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I didn’t really say “prove God doesn’t exist” so much as “prove the events and phenomenons described in the Bible have far less supernatural explanations, that are certainly more likely”. I suppose science alone cannot do much, but with the combined efforts of all kinds of study, eg. historical (generally, events as stupendous as the ones that supposedly happened will have multiple accounts) and archaeological, we can put things into question, for sure.

 
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You’re referring to the “God of the gaps” argument. I.e. god is always what we use to fill in the “gaps” in our knowledge, and that as those gaps are filled with actual knowledge religion is undermined more and more.

That still doesn’t work, because there are “gaps” which cannot be filled, or which are designed to be unfillable.

 
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It’s a fallacy to suggest that because we aren’t able to definitively prove or disprove God’s existence (in human terms, at least) His existence is equally as likely as not, impossible as it is to unarbitrarily numerate that chance I believe it’s far less, in the same way that just because I can’t prove I don’t think it’s a 50:50 they exist. The evidence suggesting a personal god doesn’t exist probably isn’t growing, but the evidence for any specific god is quite possibly diminishing. Most the world thought the globe was flat, once.

The Christian God in the less sophisticated form (i.e. more interventionist, more personified, benevolent) is no more likely than others and less likely than many, having any confidence in His existence is intellectual laziness/cowardice – there’s a reason why IQ, poor measurement of intelligence that it is, correlates negatively to expectation of a belief in a personal god. Numerous parts of the bible are simply factually wrong and can’t be excused as metaphorical, the mutual contradictions and historically demonstrated inaccuracies of the gospels for example (of course as the bible provides no evidence for a Christian God I do not hold its failings against the probability of His existence). I’ve read (slightly outdated statistic) 7/8 children in the UK fail to demonstrably break away from the religion of their parents, to me that’s a damning statement on the rationality of belief in a personal god. Children are biologically programmed to trust their parents, it’s a matter of personal survival (children also instinctively assign purpose to inaminate objects (so do adults on an emotional level, e.g. feeling anger towards a rock you stub your foot on, though the rational adult will recognise the uselessness of such an emotion and not kick the rock in retaliation). I believe the popularity of religious belief is a byproduct of traits that are otherwise useful (such as trusting your parents, and instinctively looking for meaning) and have been favoured by natural selection for those reasons.

ID-iots rely on gap reasoning, because it’s all they have. Irreducible Complexity wiki link
Time and time again scientists will close these ‘gaps’ by demonstrating how the human eye, flagellar motor, etc in fact can come about as a series of minor changes… the IDiots attempt to switch to something else or put their fingers in their ears. Of course even if scientists couldn’t at this point in time satisfactorily explain something’s evolution (hasn’t happened afaik) that is a far cry from the IDiotic copout; ‘God must have been involved’.

The anthropomorphic principle is the other relevent thing to consider when dealing with IDiots who use humanity as their evidence – even though the conditions required for intelligent life existing in any given place are very (very, very) unlikely, the universe is a very big place existing for a very long time, and in order to search for intelligent life, we must already be intelligent life. Sure it’s hard to find a needle in a haystack, but not when you’re holding the needle by default.

 
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now, I am not advertising, but there are a couple books I recommend you all read, just humor me, read “90 minutes in Heaven” and “23 minutes in Hell”, the doctors have NO medical explanation as to why the guy who write 90 minutes in heaven is alive, he was legally dead for 90 minutes, no pulse, blood everywhere, but he didn’t lose all his blood, and glass got in his head, but there was zero brain damage, they have no medical explanation, just read those two books and, I guess the bible too, it isn’t my job to convince you, just give my POV. Please read them, I guarantee they will at least make you think a little bit about this.

 
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the doctors have NO medical explanation as to why the guy who write 90 minutes in heaven is alive, he was legally dead for 90 minutes,

Paramedics are not capable of declaring anyone legally dead. Most likely, they simply got it wrong.

His actual near death experience lasted mere seconds. Most of the book is about his recovery from the accident.

As evidence, I submit the fact that near death experiences can be emulated in a laboratory setting, and that the experiences themselves generally happen just as the person expects them to, which is strong evidence against them being a part of any supernatural phenomenon.

 
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explain 23 minutes in hell. And how do you know there isn’t a heaven or a hell?

 
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Probably much the same thing. Near death experiences all share one thing in common, the brain is undergoing a time of great physical stress.

And I never claimed to know that there is not, I simply said that these anecdotes are not evidence in favour of the claim that they do exist.

 
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Most intellingent Christians believe in evelution? That is nonsense! It is impossible to believe in God and evelotion. Christains are intelligent. Religion doesn’t make you dumb.

 
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Most intellingent Christians believe in evelution? That is nonsense! It is impossible to believe in God and evelotion. Christains are intelligent. Religion doesn’t make you dumb.

You can’t believe in creationism and be an enlightened and intelligent human being. That’s impossible. Creationism is like a joke. The world created in six days? Women coming from a man’s rib? Only extremists would take that seriously, even has a hypothetical story. It’s easy to believe in God and evolution. They normally assume God kickstarted the process of single celled organisms that proceeded all life. And indeed, religion does not make you dumb. Blindly believing religion makes you dumb.

 
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Most Christians don’t blindly believe. Some struggle in their faith and seek answers because of confusion. If you believe that God just started the evelotionary process than you must also think that He does not care about you and He thinks you are equal to all animals. I do agree that Christianity is far fetched, but isn’t the idea that the world evolved for the perfect enviroment for human life far fetched to? Thinking that just the right amount of everything to create life just happened randomly is a weird idea. Christianity is a weird idea to. People say that evolution is science fact, but the truth is that it is just like any other religion, it has some promblems, and you must have faith to beleive that it is science fact.

 
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No, evolution is pretty well established. The only thing that isn’t really a consensus in the scientific community, as far as I know, is that actual origin of life. That initial spark is still up for debate and has yet to have been created in labs. Evolution on the other hand is both observable and repeatable.

As for the earth being the perfect environment for human life, you have it backwards. Life evolved to match the earth. If the earth was 10 degrees hotter and had twice the CO2 in the atmosphere, it’s likely that we’d have very different life, but you could still ask “how did Earth 2.0 end up perfect for this life?”. It has to do with the flexibility of life and evolution, not with the earth.

 
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I guess we will have to wait untill we die to know which is right. Christians and Athiest both think they can piont out flaws of the other beleifs. Must of the time neither will admit they are wrong, so there will always be people who believe in both. If evelution is true then you won’t have a chance to know about any afterlife because there is none and you’re not thinking anymore. If there is an afterlife you will either be shocked or prepared.