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Category:Religious, Educational
Tags:Christian, Morality, comments disabled, William Lane Craig, Begging the question
Submitted:kamlem
Date:01/30/15
Views:1861
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Comment count is 45
Gmork
36 seconds

People like this don't deserve electricity.
kingarthur
44 seconds. It brought the pain.

Retardo Montebaun
58 and now I'm annoyed

infinite zest
I made it up to the redhead eating the strawberry ice cream cone, the black girl eating a chocolate one, and the blonde white guy eating a vanilla one. Way to go!

SolRo
should really use the 'comments disabled' or 'comments are disabled' tag...whichever one links to the other defamatory xtian videos too sensitive for criticism.
kamlem
Done.

Mother_Puncher
If you don't want to watch it all he is saying is that only Christians who believe in god can hold objective morality while all other forms of morality outside of god are just subjective.

He's basically god exists because he's right.
Mother_Puncher
Basically saying*

fedex
no circular reasoning there

StanleyPain
This argument, of course, falls apart because none of the great monotheisms have an actual, objective standard for anything moral because it is constantly being altered within their own doctrine. Also, people like William Craig believe in "divine command" which states that something is intrinsically moral when God commands it, and not before.

Craig has actually said that if God commanded the murder of children or something, it would be a morally sound act because God decreed it. Also, this "morality" does not take into consideration people who are not religious through no fault of their own.
Anaxagoras
His argument falls apart in all sorts of ways.

1.) Religion doesn't actually provide an objective morality, as you stated.

2.) Religion originally said very little about morality, (Roman religion, for example, was more about ritual than about morality) and yet ancient people had systems of morality.

3.) God isn't actually used as a moral compass by most non-religionists; Ancient China was more-or-less an atheist land, and yet they were able to develop & adhere to an ethical system.

4) Philosophy has provided a large number of livable, realistic, satisfying moral systems that never reference God in any way. Best part: many of them are completely compatible with Christianity, so you don't even have to give up your SkyGod to adhere to them!

And that's just the weakpoints I'm able to name off the top of my head. I'm sure there are more when you stop & examine his treatise. This guy really is a Grade A idiot.

By the way, you reference a really interesting question in theistic philosophy: Is everything God does good because God always adheres to moral laws, or is everything God does good by definition? There isn't a consensus answer among theologians, and there are really interesting arguments in either direction.

Killer Joe
He had the classic cop-out with it, too. Kind of like the old:
"Could god make a boulder so big that even he couldn't lift it?"
"Doesn't matter, it's not something god would do."

Anaxagoras
Yeah, that was pretty infuriating.

"The one interesting point you raise in your video, and you cop out with an "It doesn't matter"? Fuuuuuuck yooooou."

Bort
Minority opinion here, but I say the boulder question doesn't apply because it assumes the same laws and logic apply to us as do to God, and that's an assumption that is already "known" to be faulty (e.g. the Holy Trinity). It's a little like Monopoly pieces contemplating their creator and wondering if he can move 13 spaces if he wants to.

I say this while in no way trying to validate this video. Dude sucks and God knows it.

SteamPoweredKleenex
Bort, it hardly says the same laws apply to us as they do to God.

God is sold as omnipotent, ergo there is nothing God cannot do.

The question then arises, can God do something that makes God doing a specific task impossible? If not, then God cannot do everything, yet God is supposed to be able to do everything. The rock is just part of the metaphor. It's akin to your Monopoly pieces wondering if their creator can make a board game so complicated that the creator cannot play it.

This assumes people have a creator, which is highly unlikely, but you set us up the analogy.

Call it the Supreme Being Paradox.

Bort
But there are nevertheless concepts of logic you're taking for granted, such as being a thing precludes not being that thing. It's a perfectly respectable, reasonable expectation among us mortals, but if there is a god who transcends time and space and who crafted the laws that govern them, I don't see that you can start out assuming our everyday laws of logic apply to him. And again, the Holy Trinity already violates the very concept of identity, so theologically speaking logic is already right out the window.

Grandmaster Funk
I don't understand how even the staunchest atheist could find "The Supreme Being Paradox" even slightly compelling or convincing. And I'm saying this as a complete atheist.

Can an omnipotent being curtail its own power? I don't know. Who gives a shit? Maybe? Let's say it can't. Then it can do everything except curtail its own power. Still sounds pretty fucking powerful to me. I don't see how the God-concept (ridiculous as it is for so many other reasons) is threatened if God is technically not omni - potent, but can merely do everything except curtail its own power. Is it just the word "omnipotent" that you have a problem with?

Or let's say he can. Let's say he can make a corndog so big he can't eat it all. What's so crazy about "He probably wouldn't do that shit" again? Doesn't God -- in his infinite wisdom -- have something besides juvenile thought experiments to occupy his timelessness?


The Problem of Evil, on the other hand, is a real thing.

Grandmaster Funk
Oh, I should also add that in some theologies, things like free will and the apparent material determinism of the universe are precisely examples of God willfully curtailing his own power to permit his creation to develop on its own. You can look at that as an ontological cop-out if you want, and I'd be sympathetic, but it's a serious idea.

IrishWhiskey
The problem with saying something is "beyond logic" is that the person is either some sort of deist not making any claims to how it has any relevance to our lives because it's inherently unknownable, or is just selectively invoking "beyond logic" for all the parts that are blatantly false and nonsensical. They embrace logic whenever it seems like it'll help them, like when people claim to find bits of Noah's Ark and explain how it works. But then scientists show it's bullshit and suddenly they're back to 'beyond logic'.

If it's beyond logic, you don't know it's true, or what it is. Until the person can define what system they are using, defending a claim as beyond logic is literally (not figuratively) the same as saying "I have no clue what I'm talking about". Because without logic or some working alternative that involves sorting fact claims from fiction with reliability, they don't.

oddeye
As I understand it the whole "God can do ANYTHING" thing is a problem with certain religions only and the paradox stuff is used to FREE THE MINDS of subscribers to an all-powerful god by questioning their religions stance on the subject.

Really though, like you said, any sufficiently advanced and/or powerful being(s) could have created us if we had to have had a creator.

Bort
IW - I'm in the camp that "beyond logic" and "inherently unknowable" go together if you're aspiring to any sort of intellectual honesty in your theology. As soon as you declare your supreme being to be infinite, game's over, go home, nobody can prove a thing either way about it. Which is where serious debate on the issue has stood for hundreds of years now (unlike the guy in this video and his unserious debate).

And thanks to the Holy Trinity -- thanks to that one violation of identity alone -- we can come up with any answer we want to the "Can God ____ ?" questions. The Holy Trinity is like the sneaky "divide both sides by zero" step in those proofs that 1 = 2. For example, can God create a meal so big he can't eat it? Sure, Jesus is on record as being able to eat no more than seven hot dogs at a single sitting, while we can be pretty sure that God the Father has a larger appetite, conceivably infinite; and the Holy Spirit, being everywhere, is most certainly inside the stomach linings of all the great hotdog-eating champions simultaneously. So even simple matters like hotdog maxima fall completely apart.

Grandmaster Funk
Also, consider that perhaps God is not a unique being, but really one of many Gods, each of which is entirely capable of creating a universe and exercising complete control of it, including providing eternal pleasure or torture pits for his souls. However, in his own world, the God of our universe is nothing like omnipotent. In fact, he lives in his parent's basement and is obsessed with God-gamergate. From the perspective of humans, as his creations, Christian or other religious theology is just as viable as if God really was the Supreme Being of Everything.

zurf
this is the kind of argument that gets ripped apart in a philosophy 101 class. The argument amounts to moral relativism - morality is relative to God's will. What God wills is Good and what is Good is God's will.
SteamPoweredKleenex
I think he fails from the get-go by using the word "argument" while disabling comments as well as the "discussion" tab.

Anaxagoras
Don't you fools SEE??? He has a British accent. He MUST be right!
Binro the Heretic
Counterargument:

Only non-believers are truly moral because they do good solely for the sake of others as opposed to hope for reward or fear of punishment in an afterlife.
Gmork
Ive always said - if you need the threat of eternal torture to motivate you into being a good person, you weren't a good person to begin with.

Robin Kestrel
Blind, pitiless indifference. Yep, that sounds pretty much like god to me.
Binro the Heretic
You WISH God was indifferent. An indifferent being would simply ignore us.

God will kill a child with a painful disease then send their parents to Hell if they get mad at him for not answering their prayers to heal their child.

oddeye
God damn you God!!! God DAMN YOU TO HELL... which you created.

Gmork
Ive always considered "hell" to be a post-christian fabrication that came after the original texts. There is plenty of evidence to support the notion that catholics in 13th century really "expanded the lore" of hell, and before it was just a concept that either meant (a) your soul would be CONSUMED when you die, and you would cease to exist -which is somehow worse than eternal torment or (b) it was just referencing Gehenna or whatever, where they would toss masses of dead bodies into a pit and burn them all, and hell is still the juvenile contradictory idea that it has always appeared to be.

SixDigitDebt
Dawkins quote mined;

"The total amount of suffering per year in the natural world is beyond all decent contemplation. During the minute it takes me to compose this sentence, thousands of animals are being eaten alive; others are running for their lives, whimpering with fear; others are being slowly devoured from within by rasping parasites; thousands of all kinds are dying of starvation, thirst and disease. [...] In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won't find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference."

Wherein he is saying that if there was a god with 'good' morality who gave half a fuck none of this shit would happen.
Blue
The moment I saw that I knew he was basically describing God, either by his words or his deeds.

Gmork
God, dawkins just makes me want to distance myself from the word atheism.

Which is why I love being able to say I'm agnostic instead - it has a tinge of humility that people like dawkins lack.

Redford
Ok, here's a thing. If I punch you in the arm, it hurts, right? If I punch MYSELF in the arm, it also hurts, therefore I can deduce that it also hurts you. This seems like a simple thing, but in reality it took millions of years of evolution to allow our brains to understand the concept of other. Most animals on earth can't comprehend it. In fact, the reason that young children do a lot of the things they do is they don't have a concept of an other either. It's a thing you have to learn and this is the core reason why this argument exists.

Our brains are wired to understand the concept of other, but you need to choose to exercise it. In the dark ages, there were much more significant moral issues that sprung from this. Back in tribal times the only people you really trusted were from your tiny circle of people. You didn't even REALLY trust them, you forced new members or even your own flesh and blood to perform painful and dangerous rituals in order to prove that they would be willing to do anything to you. These days while this sort of thing still exists, it's not nearly so extreme. What happened? Religion happened. Back then it was used as a mouthpiece to communicate the concept of other to the masses.

So what does this mean? This is another case of old religion finding an ideal, understanding it, and then turning it into a medium that would allow it to be understood by the masses. The masses then understood it, put the cart before the horse. Eventually, they insisted that the cart invented the horse because that what they had been taught, not understanding that the horse have been created so they could figure out why the cart exists.

This is a serious problem that modern religion continues to experience, and will continue to because we continue to outgrow the ideological necessity for it.
fluffy
crap, my eyes rolled so hard that they rolled out of my head and now they're somewhere under the couch

help i'm blind
Binro the Heretic
Ewww...

Now they're gonna have that weird fuzz all over them.

cognitivedissonance
Speaking cautiously as a believer, many unbelievers are far, far more virtuous than most Christians, and many Christians are downright monstrous.

The thingie here is whether or not you accept Sola Fide.
StanleyPain
And the reason for that is easy to discern: because religion allows ordinary people to believe that a monstrous act can be excused by some form of doctrine or interpretation of the religion and that anything unsavory they do can simply be forgiven or ignored by their god.

IrishWhiskey
It's silly to even talk about whether "Christians" are good and bad based on their ethics and religion, because it can be defined radically differently within that group. And I'm not even talking about radical splinter groups, or major sects, just person to person. I'd reasonably accept as real "Christians" two people who had nearly completely polar opposite beliefs, except for a handful of superstitions and historical claims which don't necessarily impact morality.

Most religions have a lot of 'be good' messages, and rituals. But morality isn't "be good", it's a complex and ongoing learning process of "What does good mean and how do I apply it in each situation." Even if you got rid of all the evil and ambiguous stuff in the Bible, a person applying all the good parts literally wouldn't necessarily be a good person, or apply them in the particulars well. Creeds and parables are a start to thinking about morality, not sufficient everyday instructions.

Hooker
I would respond directly to Stanley, but that thread seems to have turned into trying to lead Bort through a brain teaser.

These obviously-wrong-but-I-can't-quite-pin-down-why arguments usually become a lot easier when you look at the question(s) at the root of them. In this, I would argue the question is, "Why do people act in certain ways and not in others?" My answer to that would be that the determining factor is civility. Civility pretty neatly explains how our behaviour has changed over human history. The most heinous acts to us today were widely practised during our hunter-gatherer history. Humans regularly and routinely killed members of other human tribes, forcefully rape the women of other tribes, steal the other tribe's goods, and begin sexual relations when they were biologically capable of reproducing (if not earlier). The continual progress towards civility is what has moved us away from all of those things. Viewed in this framework, which I feel much better fits human behaviour than good and evil, it's pretty clear that the way humans behave and are expected to behave is a series of socially agreed upon rules and has no objective basis beyond the human experience. Good and evil are nice concepts to explain specific things easily, but it breaks down pretty badly when it's used to explain massive parts of the human condition.

You can, of course, quibble about many other parts of the video (my favourite is him calling humans "highly evolved" compared to a bunch of other contemporary mammals), but the biggest issue, to my mind, is him framing the argument in the wildly incorrect ideas of good and evil.
Discordia
Civility is the product of self preservation. If there are three people and two form an alliance the third loses out. So the third will be inclined to get along and work with the other two for protection. Mothers also instinctually protect their young. Sons protect their mothers. Families develop. And then clans. After thousands of years the oral tales and experiences develop into religions, values and ethics. Then comes voodoo, ritual, sacrifice and slaughter. Most likely due to the lead in the water.

John Holmes Motherfucker
I hate this argument, because it leads to Rick Santorum talking about the moral consequences of teaching evolution. When you start to form beliefs about the real world based on whether they make you a good or bad person, you've lost intellectual integrity.

And intellectual integrity is a moral value, perhaps the most important. In fact, this is where religion fails morally, by putting belief above intellectual integrity. Once you start listening to your own beliefs over the evidence the world gives you, you're on the way to moral error.

It's weird that discrimination is mentioned since, through most of history, it hasn't really been considered an evil. So what was the deal with that, did God change his mind?

I'm more of an agnostic than an athiest, but I don't see why a sense of justice couldn't be bred into us. Civilization and laws improve the survival of the species, in more ways than one. Genetic diversity is good for us. Some of the physically weaker of us have certainly contributed to our long-term survival. It's essential to our success as a species that we have Stephen Hawkings, as well as Hulk Hogans.
SolRo
There are some evolutionary theories about morality and conscience being instinctual in social animals like us...and religion (as always) is just stupid people's attempt at understanding the natural world in simple ways.

Blue
Hmm... Well obviously everybody agrees that child abuse, racial discrimination, and terrorism is wrong. This makes sense to me. There clearly is a God, and it is this man's God.

Why did I even decide to stop being religious in the first place?
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