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A friend sent this: Dawkins asks for help for “openly secular” families

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File:A small cup of coffee.JPGEvery so often, we get to the bottom of the In Bin. It’s how we know Earth has a centre, for sure. Anyway…

Openly secular? Which means what, exactly? Chopping down the municipal Christmas tree? All the trouble today comes to people who just want to follow their faith in peace, but can’t.

Meanwhile, she makes people who don’t go to church sound like the Nepal earthquake. No wonder our friend said, do these people know how they come off?

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50 Replies to “A friend sent this: Dawkins asks for help for “openly secular” families

  1. 1
    wallstreeter43 says:

    But why should Dawkins ask for help for any human beings . In atheism all we are is a piece of meat that happened to come together by blind chance and chemical interactions. There is absolutely nothing special about that . In atheism there is no ultimate value, no ultimate purpose , no ultimate meaning and no ultimate hope.

    Someone please ask Dawkins again why one pice of meat

    should seek help from another piece of meat ?

  2. 2
    tjguy says:

    “But why should Dawkins ask for help for any human beings?”

    Exactly! You could just as easily make a case for taking advantage of them or ignoring their needs, or anything you want to from an evolutionary point of view. Any action/view/conclusion/principle you come up with fits as well as another because there are on “oughts” in that worldview.

    After all, isn’t it Dawkins who wrote the book “Selfish Gene”? This is a case of a worldview that doesn’t work in life.

  3. 3
    wallstreeter43 says:

    Tj , this is why atheists look foolish for trying to argue any point that has to do with objective morality or objective moral values .

    When they do they just make themselves look like the crazy patient who keeps saying to his doctor “doc, I swear I’m not crazy, it’s the rest of the world that is crazy ” the shrinks nods his head in agreement as he gives the patient his meds and sends him out the door lol

  4. 4
    OldArmy94 says:

    If I were an atheist, I would suck the marrow out of every bit of life that I could. Giving to the needy? NAH. Exploiting anyone for any purpose that suits me? YEAH. If showing “concern” for someone else benefited me, then maybe I would think about it. However, I would just as soon squash a baby like a bug, if it inconvenienced me.

    YET,

    As has been demonstrated many times over on this page, no atheist can stand-up and acknowledge their willingness to live and die by their philosophy. Instead, they all, to one degree or another, co-opt (STEAL) theistic ethics that don’t belong to them. What fools, utter and complete fools…

  5. 5
    daveS says:

    OldArmy94,

    If I were an atheist, I would suck the marrow out of every bit of life that I could. Giving to the needy? NAH. Exploiting anyone for any purpose that suits me? YEAH. If showing “concern” for someone else benefited me, then maybe I would think about it. However, I would just as soon squash a baby like a bug, if it inconvenienced me.

    People deconvert from Christianity to atheism all the time, and I’m not aware that the behavior you describe is common. Perhaps if you did lose your faith, your perspective would (quite radically) change?

  6. 6
    JimFit says:

    The Atheists Epicurean Philosophers were the true atheists (since there were no Christians at the time to affect their views), they sat down and said “There is no God, lets make our own moral system” and they did, they created a moral system based on nature (Materialism), did they came to a conclusion about morality that matches Christian morality? HELL NO! They supported murder, woman abuse, rape, incest, hedonism, they even prophesiezed Communism, they said that in an atheistic society the head of the State must be worshiped like God, they even mocked the first Christians since they thought mercy as a weakness.

    Modern Atheists took their morality from their Christian nurture NOT their materialistic philosophy. If you believe that you are a random cosmic mistake that nothingness spewed without free will or purpose there is no reason for morality to exist because it becomes temporal, morality must be transcendent. As for the same motto the Atheists say “Atheism doesn’t make claim about morality” it is a self contradiction since if you don’t teach morality then you are guildy of irresponsibility, imagine Hitler as a child asking his atheist father (yes he was an atheist) if it is good to wipe out Jews because they own Germany banks, “Sorry kid, atheism doesn’t make claims about morality, do as you wish”

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    daveS, atheists become Christians all the time because of the emptiness inherent in atheism.

    Moreover, it is not that atheists do not live moral lives, no one is arguing that, it is that atheists cannot provide a coherent basis for the objective morality that they live their lives by:

    “The modern age, more or less repudiating the idea of a divine lawgiver, has nevertheless tried to retain the ideas of moral right and wrong, not noticing that, in casting God aside, they have also abolished the conditions of meaningfulness for moral right and wrong as well. Thus, even educated persons sometimes declare that such things as war, or abortion, or the violation of certain human rights, are morally wrong, and they imagine that they have said something true and significant. Educated people do not need to be told, however, that questions such as these have never been answered outside of religion. He concludes, Contemporary writers in ethics, who blithely discourse upon moral right and wrong and moral obligation without any reference to religion, are really just weaving intellectual webs from thin air; which amounts to saying that they discourse without meaning.”
    Richard Taylor

    “My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust?”
    – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

    For Its Moral Ideals, Evolutionary Materialism “Freeloads” on Christianity – Nancy Pearcey – May 8, 2015
    Excerpt: Westerners pride themselves on holding noble ideals such as equality and universal human rights. Yet the dominant worldview of our day — evolutionary materialism — denies the reality of human freedom and gives no basis for moral ideals such as human rights.
    So where did the idea of equal rights come from?
    The 19th-century political thinker Alexis de Tocqueville said it came from Christianity. “The most profound geniuses of Rome and Greece” never came up with the idea of equal rights, he wrote. “Jesus Christ had to come to earth to make it understood that all members of the human species are naturally alike and equal.”
    The 19th-century atheist Friedrich Nietzsche agreed: “Another Christian concept … has passed even more deeply into the tissue of modernity: the concept of the ‘equality of souls before God.’ This concept furnishes the prototype of all theories of equal rights.”
    Contemporary atheist Luc Ferry says the same thing. We tend to take the concept of equality for granted; yet it was Christianity that overthrew ancient social hierarchies between rich and poor, masters and slaves. “According to Christianity, we were all ‘brothers,’ on the same level as creatures of God,” Ferry writes. “Christianity is the first universalist ethos.”,,,
    At the birth of our nation, the American founders deemed it self-evident that human rights must be grounded in God. The Declaration of Independence leads off with those bright, blazing words: “We hold these truths to be self-evident — that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.”
    In the summer of 2013, a beer company sparked controversy when it released an advertisement for Independence Day that deleted the crucial words “by their Creator.” The ad said, “They are endowed with certain unalienable rights.” (Endowed by whom?) The advertisement is emblematic of what many secularists do: They borrow ideals like equality and rights from a biblical worldview but cut them off from their source in the Creator. They are freeloaders.,,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....95901.html

    The Heretic -Who is Thomas Nagel and why are so many of his fellow academics condemning him? Andrew Ferguson – March 25, 2013 Excerpt: A materialist who lived his life according to his professed convictions—understanding himself to have no moral agency at all, seeing his friends and enemies and family as genetically determined robots—wouldn’t just be a materialist: He’d be a psychopath.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/.....tml?page=3

    There are actually studies that show that people who do not believe in a soul are a little bit more anti-social (psychopathic) than people who do believe in a soul:

    Anthony Jack, Why Don’t Psychopaths Believe in Dualism? – video (14:22 minute mark)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?l.....zOk#t=862s

    Why Don’t Psychopaths Believe in Dualism?
    The Role of Opposing Brain Networks Anthony Jack (Case Western Reserve University, Cognitive Science, Cleveland, OH
    In a theoretical paper linking the attribution of phenomenal consciousness to moral cognition, Robbins and Jack (Philosophical Studies, 2006) predicted that psychopaths would not perceive the problem of consciousness. New experimental evidence is presented which supports this claim: in a group of undergraduates it was found that support for a naturalistic view of the mind is positively correlated with the primary psychopathic trait of callousness.
    http://www.sonoran-sunsets.com/goinggreen.html

    Of related note:

    What Happened When the Voluntary Prayer Was Removed From Schools In 1962? David Barton – starting at 5:37 minute mark of this video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=LiudwVNTUWA#t=338
    and continuing through the first few minutes of this video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zo5L4f57H4

    AMERICA: To Pray Or Not To Pray – David Barton – graphs corrected for population growth
    http://www.whatyouknowmightnotbeso.com/graphs.html

    What Happened When the Praying Stopped? April 6, 2008
    Excerpt: How did the removal of voluntary prayer from the schools of the United States (in 1963) affect our nation as a whole?,,,
    http://www.forerunner.com/fore.....opped.html

    If anyone doubts those sobering numbers cited by David Barton, here is the raw data on crime statistics for America from 1960 to 2013:

    United States Crime Rates 1960 – 2010 (Please note the skyrocketing crime rate from 1963, the year prayer was removed from school, thru 1980, the year the steep climb in crime rate finally leveled off.) of note: The slight decline in the violent crime rate from the mid 90s until now is attributed in large part to tougher enforcement on minor crimes.
    http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/uscrime.htm

  8. 8
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover, Naturalism/Materialism holds that morality is subjective and illusory. Theism holds that morality is objective and real. Morality is found to be deeply embedded in the genetic responses of humans. As well, morality is found to be deeply embedded in the structure of the universe. Embedded to the point of eliciting physiological responses in humans before humans become aware of the morally troubling situation.

    Moral evaluations of harm are instant and emotional, brain study shows – November 29, 2012
    Excerpt: People are able to detect, within a split second, if a hurtful action they are witnessing is intentional or accidental, new research on the brain at the University of Chicago shows.
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/.....brain.html

    This following study shows that objective morality is even built/designed into the way our bodies differentiate between hedonic and ‘noble’ moral happiness:

    Human Cells Respond in Healthy, Unhealthy Ways to Different Kinds of Happiness – July 29, 2013
    Excerpt: Human bodies recognize at the molecular level that not all happiness is created equal, responding in ways that can help or hinder physical health,,,
    The sense of well-being derived from “a noble purpose” may provide cellular health benefits, whereas “simple self-gratification” may have negative effects, despite an overall perceived sense of happiness, researchers found.,,,
    But if all happiness is created equal, and equally opposite to ill-being, then patterns of gene expression should be the same regardless of hedonic or eudaimonic well-being. Not so, found the researchers.
    Eudaimonic well-being was, indeed, associated with a significant decrease in the stress-related CTRA gene expression profile. In contrast, hedonic well-being was associated with a significant increase in the CTRA profile. Their genomics-based analyses, the authors reported, reveal the hidden costs of purely hedonic well-being.,,
    “We can make ourselves happy through simple pleasures, but those ‘empty calories’ don’t help us broaden our awareness or build our capacity in ways that benefit us physically,” she said. “At the cellular level, our bodies appear to respond better to a different kind of well-being, one based on a sense of connectedness and purpose.”
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....161952.htm

    the following studies go one step further and shows that our moral intuition transcends space and time:

    Quantum Consciousness – Time Flies Backwards? – Stuart Hameroff MD
    Excerpt: Dean Radin and Dick Bierman have performed a number of experiments of emotional response in human subjects. The subjects view a computer screen on which appear (at randomly varying intervals) a series of images, some of which are emotionally neutral, and some of which are highly emotional (violent, sexual….). In Radin and Bierman’s early studies, skin conductance of a finger was used to measure physiological response They found that subjects responded strongly to emotional images compared to neutral images, and that the emotional response occurred between a fraction of a second to several seconds BEFORE the image appeared! Recently Professor Bierman (University of Amsterdam) repeated these experiments with subjects in an fMRI brain imager and found emotional responses in brain activity up to 4 seconds before the stimuli. Moreover he looked at raw data from other laboratories and found similar emotional responses before stimuli appeared.
    http://www.quantumconsciousnes.....Flies.html

    The preceding finding is simply completely inexplicable on materialistic premises.

    Verses and Music:

    Luke 18:18-22
    A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
    “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.”
    “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said.
    When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

    Cranberries – Salvation
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KotlCEGNbh8

  9. 9
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    daveS, atheists become Christians all the time because of the emptiness inherent in atheism.

    Moreover, it is not that atheists do not live moral lives, no one is arguing that, it is that atheists cannot provide a coherent basis for the objective morality that they live their lives by:

    I think that’s a separate question. Here is what I’m asking about, more specifically. Quite frequently a theist will say that if they were an atheist, they would behave in such and such a way, as OldArmy94 did.

    If OldArmy94 lost his faith, does anyone think he would decide that squashing babies is no big deal?

  10. 10
    goodusername says:

    People are actually puzzled that anyone would actually help others unless told to do so by an all-powerful Being with the power to send them to Hell.
    Or would even think nothing of squashing babies like a bug.

    Threads like this have me wondering if psychopathy is far more common than I thought. Either that or people are just very bad at understanding the source of their own compassion and morality.

  11. 11
    bornagain77 says:

    daveS, and why do you, as an atheist, think that ‘squashing babies’ is a big deal for someone to do but that dismemberment of a baby in a womb (i.e. abortion) is not really that big of a deal for a person to do?

    Baby in a womb – picture
    http://hybridchildrencommunity.....n-womb.jpg

    Abortion Methods and Abortion Procedures Used to Kill Unborn Babies – 2013
    Excerpt: Suction Aspiration/Suction Curettage
    ”[t]he abortionist runs the tip of the cannula along the surface of the uterus causing the baby to be dislodged and sucked into the tube – either whole or in pieces.”

    Salt Poisoning (Saline Injection)

    After 16 weeks, a needle full of a salt solution is injected through the mother’s abdomen so as to reach the baby’s sac. The baby is not merely poisoned when he swallows the solution; rather, his outer layer of skin is also burned off. The baby will also not die right away, as it usually takes over an hour for him to die.,,,

    Dilation and Extraction (D&X)

    D&X partial birthThis form of abortion, now illegal, is also known as the partial-birth abortion. The procedure takes place in five steps, with the abortionist first grabbing the baby’s legs with forceps. Next, the baby’s leg is pulled out of the birth canal. The entire body is then delivered, except for the head. The abortionist then jams scissors into the baby’s skull. The scissors are opened to enlarge the skull. And lastly, after the scissors are removed, a suction catheter is inserted. The baby’s brains are sucked out and the skull collapses. The dead baby is now completely removed.
    http://www.lifenews.com/2013/0.....rn-babies/

  12. 12
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    daveS, and why do you, as an atheist, think that ‘squashing babies’ is a big deal for someone to do but that dismemberment of a baby in a womb (i.e. abortion) is not really that big of a deal for a person to do?

    Well, I don’t think that.

    I do think that when someone such as OldArmy94 loses his/her faith, they quickly realize that there are reasons separate from God for why we don’t go around randomly killing each other. And in fact, most theists realize this already.

  13. 13
    bornagain77 says:

    So daveS, where do you get your morals and why are they better than the abortionist down the street who is dismembering unborn babies?

  14. 14
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    So daveS, where do you get your morals and why are they better than the abortionist down the street who is dismembering unborn babies?

    If I answer your question, will you answer my question about OldArmy94?

    I get/got my morals through parental teaching, culture, personal life experience, discussions with others, and so forth. I don’t claim that mine are better than anyone else’s. I’m nowhere near the baby-squashing stage, however.

    My question, again:

    If OldArmy94 lost his faith, does anyone think he would decide that squashing babies is no big deal?

  15. 15
    JimFit says:

    daveS

    If OldArmy94 lost his faith, does anyone think he would decide that squashing babies is no big deal?

    Yes, if his life depending on it and someone said to him that if he want to save his life all he had to do is to press a button that would kill babies with 1% chance to survive from terminal illness in some abandoned third world country he and other atheists would do it, a true Christian wouldn’t do it, he would prefer to die than to kill someone else.

    There is always a reason behind evil either it is a murder or stealing, someone that has only one life probably he will justify some reason prior to an evil act because for him there is no afterlife judgment and this life must come first, that means that he will sustain his life as long as he can.

    goodusername

    People are actually puzzled that anyone would actually help others unless told to do so by an all-powerful Being with the power to send them to Hell.

    That would be true if we were separated entities, we are not, we are the images of God, our actions reflect God’s Nature which is love, either you go with life and you are good or you go with death and you are evil. Only unconditional love is aimless and God created us out of unconditional love.

  16. 16
    daveS says:

    Hi JimFit,

    Yes, if his life depending on it and someone said to him that if he want to save his life all he had to do is to press a button that would kill babies with 1% chance to survive from terminal illness in some abandoned third world country he and other atheists would do it, a true Christian wouldn’t do it, he would prefer to die than to kill someone else.

    If I understand the scenario correctly, I certainly wouldn’t press the button.

  17. 17
    Dean_from_Ohio says:

    Just not secular families with disabilities. Naturally, not those families:

    http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-ouch-28879659

    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....96021.html

  18. 18
    bornagain77 says:

    So daveS, you say that it is no big deal that an abortionist would dismember babies but you find it inconceivable that someone who turned their back on God could end up doing the same? How convenient! Consistency in logic is not your strong suit!

  19. 19
    JimFit says:

    daveS

    If I understand the scenario correctly, I certainly wouldn’t press the button.

    What keeps you from not pressing it?

  20. 20
    bornagain77 says:

    Another clue that morals are not reducible to a material basis is the fact that when someone does something that they don’t feel right about, they don’t say ‘my morals are bothering me’ but they always say that ‘my consciousness is bothering me’.
    And as we all know, or as we all should know, consciousness refuses to be reduced to a material basis:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-564790

  21. 21
    ppolish says:

    As a flaming Christian Theist who has not been to church on a Sunday in many years, I feel the open secular women’s pain. Although I did not watch her vid sorry.

    I’m one of those “nonreligious” folk that Dawkins and Dennett seem so proud of lol. BTW, by “flaming” I mean “very outwardly” and not burning eternally yikes. Jesus Loves:)

  22. 22
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    So daveS, you say that it is no big deal that an abortionist would dismember babies

    ??

    No, I didn’t say that. What are you talking about?

  23. 23
    bw says:

    @daveS
    No one does seem to be answering you about what oldarmy said. I don’t think for one second that he or anyone else for that matter who denied an existing faith in God would do such things on a whim.

    I think it is just more the idea that atheists seem to preach one thing, yet live another. Not that they live lives without morals or anything like that, but they do seem to live as if there is more to it than just pure indifference as Dawkins put it.

    I am a Christian, but I don’t expect people who don’t believe in God to automatically behave a certain way, I grew up in a culture with very little understanding of the concept of God and they were far from barbaric, they were perhaps the kindest race I have met so far 🙂

    I would say this though, almost every atheist I know personally who has come to reject God has only gone on to become a more bitter and selfish person, now I have only a small sample size of less than 10 people so I don’t intend to extrapolate, but I do feel sorry for them, their “enlightenment” has certainly not bought them and obvious benefits despite now being more “free”. 🙁

    Back to old army though, I think it can be annoying for people of faith to watch atheists lead boring (non-hedonistic) lives, because there are many Christians that, were it not for their faith, would be some very naughty people and that is for sure! I know for are a fact there are many that would be out there drinking themselves stupid, having sex with everyone they could, abusing drugs and not giving a crap about others… so when atheists don’t fit that bill – maybe it just rubs it in their noses a little I don’t know.

    Just a guess. Anyway, I don’t think it is a great argument, and everyone is different.

    Keep up the exchanges though!

  24. 24
    daveS says:

    JimFit,

    What keeps you from not pressing it?

    First let me make sure I understand the scenario. In order to save my life, I could press a button which would have the effect of killing millions of third-world children, correct?

    If that’s right, then I hope no one here or anyone I know would accept that offer. It sounds horrific. It would be impossible for me to live with the guilt, knowing I had sacrificed the life of millions just to perpetuate my own.

  25. 25
    daveS says:

    bw,

    Thanks for the input. I agree with much of what you say.

  26. 26
    JimFit says:

    daveS

    Not millions, some babies that have a terminal illness and have 1% chance to survive in some unknown land, where you can’t see them.

  27. 27
    daveS says:

    JimFit,

    I still would not press the button, for exactly the same reasons.

  28. 28
    JimFit says:

    Okay, why is it horific and why you will have guilts?

  29. 29
    bornagain77 says:

    BA77: “So daveS, you say that it is no big deal that an abortionist would dismember babies”

    ??

    daveS: “No, I didn’t say that. What are you talking about?”

    daveS previously:

    “I don’t claim that mine (i.e. my morals) are better than anyone else’s. (presumably including abortionists and Hitler?)”

    So daveS, let me get this straight, it is a big deal for you personally that abortionists would dismember babies but you can’t tell me why your morals may be better than his, or perhaps even why his morals may be better than yours?

    Perhaps you even find it morally offensive to vote against abortion since it might take away his moral right to dismember babies?

    “The first principle of value that we need to rediscover is this: that all reality hinges on moral foundations. In other words, that this is a moral universe, and that there are moral laws of the universe just as abiding as the physical laws.”
    – Martin Luther King Jr., A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration from the Great Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

    God, Immanuel Kant, Richard Dawkins, and the Quantum – video
    Morality and free will at 9:00 minute mark
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQOwMX4bCqk

  30. 30
    daveS says:

    JimFit,

    Okay, why is it horific and why you will have guilts?

    At some point, possibly right here, I’m just going to have to say “because that’s how I feel”. Is it really necessary for me to explain why? My point is that despite your statement (my bolding added):

    Yes, if his life depending on it and someone said to him that if he want to save his life all he had to do is to press a button that would kill babies with 1% chance to survive from terminal illness in some abandoned third world country he and other atheists would do it, a true Christian wouldn’t do it, he would prefer to die than to kill someone else.

    I would not push the button.

  31. 31
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    So daveS, let me get this straight, it is a big deal for you personally that abortionists would dismember babies but you can’t tell me why your morals may be better than his, or perhaps even why his morals may be better than yours?

    Perhaps you even find it morally offensive to vote against abortion since it might take away his moral right to dismember babies?

    I don’t know where you’re going with this. AFAICS, my morals are very similar to others I interact with, most of whom are Christians. I consider myself very normal in that regard. I am not making any claims about the morality of abortionists. Rather, I am simply disagreeing with the statement that OldArmy94 made above.

    I would neither accept the proposition that JimFit described nor do I take abuse of infants lightly. Just like exactly 100% of the other posters here, I’m sure. Yet I’m an atheist.

  32. 32
    OldArmy94 says:

    I didn’t know my comments would stir up such a storm.

    Here’s the deal. Atheists are free to live as they choose and practice morality if they wish. It’s just that IF they truly believe that materialism is the only reality, then why bother with all of the niceties? Do what you can get away with as often as you can, and don’t waste any time or resources on anyone or anything that doesn’t serve your own needs. It’s a no-brainer, really.

    Now, as a Christian, I have absolutely no desire, hidden or open, to live this way. In fact, I fully desire to practice goodness, compassion, love and all the other values that reflect my faith in an eternal God. Of course I fail to live up to that..often. But that’s where the redeeming grace of Jesus Christ comes alive.

  33. 33
    bornagain77 says:

    daveS, and yet you cannot account for why you find abortionists dismembering babies reprehensible.

    To quote you, your morality boils down to,,,

    “because that’s how I feel”,,

    ,,, but I can give a coherent reason for why you, and everybody else who hasn’t had their consciousness seared by sin, feels that way about abortionists dismembering babies. The reason why you, and everybody else, feels that way is because,,,

    “The first principle of value that we need to rediscover is this: that all reality hinges on moral foundations. In other words, that this is a moral universe, and that there are moral laws of the universe just as abiding as the physical laws.”
    – Martin Luther King Jr., A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration from the Great Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

  34. 34
    daveS says:

    OldArmy94,

    It’s just that IF they truly believe that materialism is the only reality, then why bother with all of the niceties? Do what you can get away with as often as you can, and don’t waste any time or resources on anyone or anything that doesn’t serve your own needs. It’s a no-brainer, really.

    I don’t really have a position on materialism, but one answer to this is that spending time and resources on others often returns far greater benefits to oneself. In other words, it’s in your own best interest not to try and get away with whatever you can and exploit others, but rather to give as much as possible.

  35. 35
    bornagain77 says:

    daveS, you are a non-Darwinian, non-materialist, atheist?

    to repeat, consistency is not your strong suit.

    Perhaps you should take a lesson from Friedrich Nietzsche and try to live honestly, and consistently, within your chosen atheistic worldview?

    Ravi Zacharias reads from ‘Parable of the Madman’ by Friedrich Nietzsche
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TO5MytakLy8

    of note:

    The Heretic – Who is Thomas Nagel and why are so many of his fellow academics condemning him? – March 25, 2013
    Excerpt: ,,,Fortunately, materialism is never translated into life as it’s lived. As colleagues and friends, husbands and mothers, wives and fathers, sons and daughters, materialists never put their money where their mouth is. Nobody thinks his daughter is just molecules in motion and nothing but; nobody thinks the Holocaust was evil, but only in a relative, provisional sense. A materialist who lived his life according to his professed convictions—understanding himself to have no moral agency at all, seeing his friends and enemies and family as genetically determined robots—wouldn’t just be a materialist: He’d be a psychopath.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/.....tml?page=3

    Darwin’s Robots: When Evolutionary Materialists Admit that Their Own Worldview Fails – Nancy Pearcey – April 23, 2015
    Excerpt: Even materialists often admit that, in practice, it is impossible for humans to live any other way. One philosopher jokes that if people deny free will, then when ordering at a restaurant they should say, “Just bring me whatever the laws of nature have determined I will get.”
    An especially clear example is Galen Strawson, a philosopher who states with great bravado, “The impossibility of free will … can be proved with complete certainty.” Yet in an interview, Strawson admits that, in practice, no one accepts his deterministic view. “To be honest, I can’t really accept it myself,” he says. “I can’t really live with this fact from day to day. Can you, really?”,,,
    In What Science Offers the Humanities, Edward Slingerland, identifies himself as an unabashed materialist and reductionist. Slingerland argues that Darwinian materialism leads logically to the conclusion that humans are robots — that our sense of having a will or self or consciousness is an illusion. Yet, he admits, it is an illusion we find impossible to shake. No one “can help acting like and at some level really feeling that he or she is free.” We are “constitutionally incapable of experiencing ourselves and other conspecifics [humans] as robots.”
    One section in his book is even titled “We Are Robots Designed Not to Believe That We Are Robots.”,,,
    When I teach these concepts in the classroom, an example my students find especially poignant is Flesh and Machines by Rodney Brooks, professor emeritus at MIT. Brooks writes that a human being is nothing but a machine — a “big bag of skin full of biomolecules” interacting by the laws of physics and chemistry. In ordinary life, of course, it is difficult to actually see people that way. But, he says, “When I look at my children, I can, when I force myself, … see that they are machines.”
    Is that how he treats them, though? Of course not: “That is not how I treat them…. I interact with them on an entirely different level. They have my unconditional love, the furthest one might be able to get from rational analysis.” Certainly if what counts as “rational” is a materialist worldview in which humans are machines, then loving your children is irrational. It has no basis
    within Brooks’s worldview. It sticks out of his box.
    How does he reconcile such a heart-wrenching cognitive dissonance? He doesn’t. Brooks ends by saying, “I maintain two sets of inconsistent beliefs.” He has given up on any attempt to reconcile his theory with his experience. He has abandoned all hope for a unified, logically consistent worldview.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....95451.html

    Existential Argument against Atheism – November 1, 2013 by Jason Petersen
    1. If a worldview is true then you should be able to live consistently with that worldview.
    2. Atheists are unable to live consistently with their worldview.
    3. If you can’t live consistently with an atheist worldview then the worldview does not reflect reality.
    4. If a worldview does not reflect reality then that worldview is a delusion.
    5. If atheism is a delusion then atheism cannot be true.
    Conclusion: Atheism is false.
    http://answersforhope.com/exis.....t-atheism/

  36. 36
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    daveS, and yet you cannot account for why you find abortionists dismembering babies reprehensible.

    Again, I’ve said nothing about abortionists one way or the other. Please see my posts to OldArmy94 and JimFit for what I actually am saying.

  37. 37
    JimFit says:

    daveS

    First of all i am not saying that atheists in their daily life will be immoral, i am just saying that between their life and a good action they will choose their lives since this is the only thing they have.

    At some point, possibly right here, I’m just going to have to say “because that’s how I feel”. Is it really necessary for me to explain why? My point is that despite your statement (my bolding added):

    Exactly! I was expecting that answer, i do it because it feels right inside me, this goes straight against materialism because it implies that what it feels right carries transcendence. On Materialism death is not something bad, death is natural and death leads to eternal oblivion therefor no judgment, what you need to have an opinion about the death of the sick babies for your survival is a third observer outside space and time after you have died to say “AHA, this guy was wrong because he sacrificed these babies for his own life”. Even as an atheist you think the afterlife judgment, you think like a theist.

    Both Theists and Atheists have their moral compass on something transcendent, its called conscience.

  38. 38
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    daveS, you are a non-Darwinian, non-materialists atheist?

    to repeat, consistency is not your strong suit.

    Please, easy on my scroll-wheel. 🙂

  39. 39
    bornagain77 says:

    daveS, hypothetically ‘squashing babies’ and dismembering babies for real in abortion clinics are, contrary to you pretending they are not related, directly related. In fact abortion makes the ‘hypothetical’ issue much more personal since it is no longer a hypothetical situation you are talking about but is a real situation that happens to the tune of over a million times a year in America.

  40. 40
    JimFit says:

    bornagain77 lets leave outside of the discussion the abortions, i think it can be shown that morality steams from something transcendent and that clearly doesn’t support Materialism.

  41. 41
    daveS says:

    JimFit,

    daveS

    First of all i am not saying that atheists in their daily life will be immoral, i am just saying that between their life and a good action they will choose their lives since this is the only thing they have.

    Some things are worse than death. I would prefer to die rather than push the button in your scenario.

    Exactly! I was expecting that answer, i do it because it feels right inside me, this goes straight against materialism because it implies that what it feels right carries transcendence. On Materialism death is not something bad, death is natural and death leads to eternal oblivion therefor no judgment, what you need to have an opinion about the death of the sick babies for your survival is a third observer outside space and time after you have died to say “AHA, this guy was wrong because he sacrificed these babies for his own life”. Even as an atheist you think the afterlife judgment, you think like a theist.

    I don’t know whether materialism is true, so I don’t have a response to the first part. Regarding this last sentence, I really don’t have a great concern for any afterlife judgment; that’s not a factor in my decision making.

    Both Theists and Atheists have their moral compass on something transcendent, its called conscience.

    While I don’t know about the “transcendent” part, I do agree that we all have a conscience. So there’s that, anyway.

  42. 42
    daveS says:

    BA77,

    daveS, hypothetically ‘squashing babies’ and dismembering babies for real in abortion clinics are, contrary to you pretending they are not related, directly related. In fact abortion makes the ‘hypothetical’ issue much more personal since it is no longer a hypothetical situation you are talking about but is a real situation that happens to the tune of over a million times a year in America.

    I’m not pretending they aren’t related. Again:

    1) I believe OldArmy94 will never behave in the manner he described, even if he were to deconvert. Source: people deconvert every day and don’t flip out and start murdering people.

    2) I’m not going to push the button! 🙂

  43. 43
    JimFit says:

    daveS

    I don’t know whether materialism is true, so I don’t have a response to the first part. Regarding this last sentence, I really don’t have a great concern for any afterlife judgment; that’s not a factor in my decision making.

    But you said

    Some things are worse than death. I would prefer to die rather than push the button on your scenario.

    The death of the sick babies for your shake is not something bad on atheism, they die and their problems also dies, what it follows is eternal oblivion, to feel guilty about a death you must put yourself after death and look at the purpose of their lives and say that these babies died unfairly. When you do this you trespass your atheism since nothing continues after death. A true atheist would say, they died, i will die someday, no problem, both we will end up on eternal oblivion, nothing wrong happened.

  44. 44
    daveS says:

    JimFit,

    The death of the sick babies for your shake is not something bad on atheism, they die and their problems also dies, what it follows is eternal oblivion, to feel guilty about a death you must put yourself after death and look at the purpose of their lives and say that these babies died unfairly. When you do this you trespass your atheism since nothing continues after death. A true atheist would say, they died, i will die someday, no problem, both we will end up on eternal oblivion, nothing wrong happened.

    I guess I don’t know of any “true” atheists then.

    Anyway, in my experience, people place great value on their own lives and their loved ones’ lives, so I would absolutely never want to take that from anyone.

  45. 45
    groovamos says:

    goodusername: Threads like this have me wondering if psychopathy is far more common than I thought. Either that or people are just very bad at understanding the source of their own compassion and morality.

    Lighten up. People on threads like this make a great sport of ridiculing the contradictions and incongruences of materialists. We all know that materialists can and do love their daughters as much as dualists. Even though the idea of ‘love’ violates the tenets of scientism that they mostly hold dear.

    People on threads like this also get told stuff like: “its nice that you have found purpose in your life” – as I was told – the apparent great sport being to ridicule the concept.

    My response to friendly atheist was to propose an experiment to sit his daughter down and tell her that her face has no purpose. Then immediately outline the logical connection between ‘purpose’and ‘meaning’ to explain to daughter that her face has no meaning for friendly atheist. Not being true, friendly atheist bowed out of discussion.

  46. 46
    dl says:

    DaveS,

    “Perhaps if you did lose your faith, your perspective would (quite radically) change?”

    I don’t think my perspective would change much if at all. I periodically re-evaluate my fundamental beliefs. The fundamental morality never changes. I know that conflicts with statements from some other pro-ID people (I’m 100% pro-ID) but in my case anyway, I think morality is independent of ID beliefs.

  47. 47
    Axel says:

    IF I understand this correctly, DaveS just does not understand that his personal morality is not really the issue here. Rather it is its inconsistency with his materialist belief.

    Rather, his morality is presumably a hotch-potch, but essentially, a cultural inheritance from the days of Christendom. I have atheist/agnostic in-laws who generally have outstanding Christian values that have often put me to shame. But I commensurately doubt their philosophical consistency.

  48. 48
    daveS says:

    Hi dl,

    DaveS,

    “Perhaps if you did lose your faith, your perspective would (quite radically) change?”

    I don’t think my perspective would change much if at all. I periodically re-evaluate my fundamental beliefs. The fundamental morality never changes. I know that conflicts with statements from some other pro-ID people (I’m 100% pro-ID) but in my case anyway, I think morality is independent of ID beliefs.

    I feel much the same way, in that if I found myself convinced that ID is “true”, I doubt my morality would change a great deal. Our differences tend to be exaggerated a bit on websites such as this where contentious issues are discussed.

  49. 49
    daveS says:

    Hi Axel,

    IF I understand this correctly, DaveS just does not understand that his personal morality is not really the issue here. Rather it is its inconsistency with his materialist belief.

    Rather, his morality is presumably a hotch-potch, but essentially, a cultural inheritance from the days of Christendom. I have atheist/agnostic in-laws who generally have outstanding Christian values that have often put me to shame. But I commensurately doubt their philosophical consistency.

    However I’m not a materialist (I’m pretty sure I’ll go to my grave without knowing whether materialism is true). Certainly I have inherited a lot from Christianity. In fact, I attend church regularly with my spouse, so while I am not a believer, it continues to influence me.

    As to the question of consistency, I’m not sure that I am significantly less consistent that anyone else. The Christian teachings that I have internalized mostly center around the second Great Commandment, which to me is very consistent with acting in my own long-term interests.

  50. 50
    Axel says:

    ‘As to the question of consistency, I’m not sure that I am significantly less consistent that anyone else.’

    Absolutely, Dave, but this is just the point. No materialist – at least publicly – follows through with their theoretical, psychopathic nihilism. Because that’s what materialism predicates. But I was mistaken: not all atheists are materialists. I should have checked back.

    It’s the antithesis of Thatcher’s (Baroness Cardboard) reciting the Prayer of St Francis (in all seriousness and with a straight face). But then.. perhaps not in all seriousness, in her case, however deadpan her delivery. Disingenuousness, writ large, though.

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