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I'm think I'm losing faith in God. - Page 3

User Thread
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
What I am saying is that the impossibility of deciding the issue FOR ALL TIME does not mean we need stay utterly silent on the matter.


And what I told you long ago, and thankfully for the last time as it would appear, was that agnosticism in no way requires, demands, or otherwise expects you to, regardless of some people's interpretation and misuse of the term.

However, if you should try to make an empirical definitive claim about something unknown, you will be called an asshat.

Just the same as if you cannot accept "I don't know" as an answer to the question of the actual existance of something that is unknown, you will likewise be called a deuche bag.

Because the point of agnosticism is to speak on the factuality of the matter in order to...

quote:
decid[e] the issue FOR ALL TIME


which you have described as an...

quote:
impossibility


Therefore giving an actual answer to such a question is equally impossible, which should be common sense.

Which says nothing about gasbags blowing hot air on the subject.

Speculation and theory, which you are trying so desperately to defend and claim a lack of understanding on my part, are not even in the equation.

They are irrelevant to, and seperate from, an argument or question of one's knowledge of an empirical definitive, also known as a fact or provable physical reality.

And though I leaned towards and allowed the possibility that perhaps you weren't retarded, I must, it would appear, concede to the contrary.

But to test your resolve for the sake of shits and giggles, of which, I might add, you have provided many of both...

Do you know, as fact, that the biblically described and defined god physically exists?

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
 38yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that pupa ria is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
ptsk, this is becoming absurd even though i didn't read any of your posts (only presumed this by their length and perseverance)...why don't you boys flip a coin, it's either heads or tails.Unless by some divine intervention the coin stands on itself and crawls down into the abyss.
Agnosticism is cowardice, a man refusing to live it up. Point final...
i was an agnostic for 9 years btw. The Exit, it's the one thing i retain of Deleuze; there are no answers to questions but only exits out of the question.

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"I'm the mirror that will make you invisible"
[  Edited by pupa ria at   ]
 39yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Chained Wings is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I think Ironwood wins the argument with this point.

quote:
Do you know, as fact, that the biblically described and defined god physically exists?


I know Wittgensteins, you have decided to retire from the debate, but one of the first things you said was that agnosticism was avoiding answering the question of whether god does or doesn't exist.

Unless you can answer Ironwood's question, you will find yourself in the same place you placed agnostics.

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"When I was a child I flew! Then as an adult- I watched others soar."
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Absurd indeed.

And to move on, leaving behind the attempt to readjust witts demeanor, I will again readjust my own.

I still think the bulk of the absurdity came from a basic need to clarify the definition to the term agnostic, anyone who is willing and able, feel free to add or detract from any given perception to help clarify the debate altogether.

But what I still have curiosities about and wish to move forward with is the interestingly strong opinions against this very neutral concept of agnosticism.

Again, I personally don't hold myself to such a label, so it is not a personal thing rather than intellectual curiosity, but obviously strong feelings and opinions have been expressed so this may not hold true for all.

I would like to ask those who feel agnosticism as cowardly, again firstly, what they understand agnosticism to be and mean, but also what opposing viewpoint they hold that feel to be so brave.

So far I've heard its a refusal to answer a question and to live it up, the latter even being declared "point final" when I don't even know what it is intended to mean, this does not give much to work with and I would very much appreciate some clarification.

Since I hold some issues with many religious and belief based claim oriented mentalities, especially in regards to both bravery/cowardice and intellectual open mindedness and mind numbed indoctrinations which happened to be touched upon here, I would again like to further the conversation with those willing, or indeed brave enough to bother reading the posts and continuing to post in response to them.

Just to add perspective and allude to where some of my likely debate will come from or include, I have to remind that as evidenced in this very exchange above, it seems quite obvious to me that someone would have to be brave to proclaim themself agnostic in the face of such dismissive and caustic reactions to it.

And there is the point which requires far less of a reminder of an intellectual debate about the intelligence and thought processes behind holding any posistion on this subject matter.

Which comes back to my question above, of who holds what opposing posistions and the desired explaining or clarification of their perceived and previously expressed relations to the bravery intelligence debates.

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
 37yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Wyote is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I have found that in the trenches of the atheist vs theist battle, both sides feel severely threatened by agnostics. If threatened is not the correct term, they certainly clamor around the agnostics in hopes they will be swayed to their own respective sides.

This actually angers me on a deep level and I have found many atheists to be hypocritical in that they try to convert agnostics about as intensely/forcefully as any good Christian would try to convert a non believer. In essence, I have found that atheists become the thing which they hate so much because they know in their hearts that the conclusion of no god is the correct conclusion.

Probability is in the atheist's favor, but there is not yet a definitive answer.

Also I'd like to point out that there are agnostic theists and agnostic atheists. I believe I do fall under the agnostic theist category myself.

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"A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge. - Thomas Carlyle"
 33yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that ChrisD is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
it seems quite obvious to me that someone would have to be brave to proclaim themself agnostic in the face of such dismissive and caustic reactions to it.


I'd say atheists are the bravest of the bunch. It takes some balls to put all your faith in the idea that there is no God or life after death.

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"The truth will set you on fire"
 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that wittgensteins is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I think Ironwood wins the argument with this point.



quote:
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
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Do you know, as fact, that the biblically described and defined god physically exists?
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
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Probably not, but what are facts? The French Revolution taking place in 1789? Oxygen being heavier than hydrogen? That I am typing on a computer right now? Is it because evolution is a fact that I am permitted to hold that Creationism doesn't pass the mustard as science? Or is it rather because it is possible to mount decisive arguments to this effect, without yielding the result of absolute, incorrigible certainty? What are facts? Are they perhaps - what we agree to call true? Those aspects of knowledge which, by their nature, are not open to revision? This is an old and hoary conception of the "fact" which goes back to Francis Bacon, one which, if I may say, elides the sense in which facts are value-laden. The facts never speak for themselves. They are never unproblematic. We can always construct arguments - of greater or lesser credibility, granted - which call into question the dominion of even the most sacrosanct facts. For example, it seems to be a fact that I am sittting here now, typing on this computer. And yet, however unlikely it seems, it is still possible that I am dreaming or hallucinating. That any given theories about existence or non-existence have no tendency to solidify into hard, irrefutable fact matters little for the present debate.

I have already said that we are talking about the issue we are concerned with probability and not certainty. It is often assumed that since it is impossible to fashion a proof of God's existence, we must admit we really don't know. But take Bertrand Russell's famous example of the assertion that a tea-pot is orbiting the earth. Now, it can easily be seen that it is impossible to disprove such an assertion; nobody has seen it, but someone may yet. This being admitted, it is clear to me that since there is no evidence to suggest that this assertion has any credence, it is both becoming and rational to say that such an assertion is probably false. And so with God. Of course, if it could be established that the evidence for each conclusion were equally compelling, we would rightly be agnostics. If I toss a coin, no arguments can be framed which favour heads over tails, or vice versa; and so we would have to with-hold judgement. In Quantum Mechanics, similar situations arise. But by and large, no matter how murky and set about with confusion an issue is, it is possible to meaningfully argue for one propositon at the expense of another.

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 38yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that pupa ria is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
First of all... I want to apologize for saying that this debate was heading down the pitfall of absurdity...not only was it pretentious of me it was also partially a false statement. There is nothing absurd in the exaltation induced by the provocation of the intellect. We are all pleasure seeking animals and sadly/luckily for humans in any derivative way. I did read your posts but the ritualistic use of the word 'Belittle' got me wondering about the sincerity of intentions behind a discussion that evolves around god. The most interesting debates are those where two potential antagonists find a common ground and build a kaleidoscope, through which the difference of opinions heads down to a vanishing point.

The reason that led me to say that this is absurd was the question you were trying to solve. The concrete case at hand would be to see how god's existence or inexistence would influence my own existence. After going through the pros and cons of each position comes the time to deliberate. Gods is not given to you on a silver plate, you must look for it. It's like the plans you make for the future. You decide what you want and work to make it happen. Agnosticism should be the interval period where you can flip your coin because it's all empty grounds, it shouldn't be something you nest in. It is a sham against the freedom we possess as decision making animals. That's why I said that agnosticism is cowardice, embedding people with peter pan complex. This is nothing but a personal opinion, a call for indifference. Sorry if I sound romantic but I can't help it.O.o

point final=fullstop
Branlette intellectuelle= intellectual masturbation.

...Let love in

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"I'm the mirror that will make you invisible"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
Probably not


Yes or no. These were the options given to me.

You have refused to answer, by your own account, you are a coward who holds the most damnable of posistions.

And since you refused to say, "I don't know" I will count you as a coward as well.

I hope you enjoy your foot sandwich.

quote:
I have already said that we are talking about the issue we are concerned with probability and not certainty.


And I will have to remind you that no, we were talking about agnosticism in relation to the question of the existance of god, which does deal with certainty not probability, hence, an answer, a fact, not a guess, and not a choice of what one wishes to believe.

This is why I pointed out that much of the inability to come to an agreement, which likely exists anyway, was due to out of context arguments and was hindered by apparent confusion about the term agnostic.

This is why I also tried to add my understanding and interpretation of the term to help the conversation, but it was not reciprocated, indeed it was deemed of no value, and absurdity ensued.

quote:
I'd say atheists are the bravest of the bunch. It takes some balls to put all your faith in the idea that there is no God or life after death.


I would say I whole heartedly disagree.

This would amount to blind faith and would make them absolutely no different than those whom they are trying to disprove.

This posistion, on both sides, takes out the element of intellect, which was why I added it to the bravery debate.

Because once you take out intellegence from this equation knowledge of consequence goes with it, which is what you would need balls and brains to face.

Which is what an agnostic does, because to the best of my understanding and recollection, by most major religious accounts both athiests and agnostics suffer the same fate, but only one of them intellectually entertains the notions of that holding any possible meaning or consequence to need balls to face.

As for athiests bravely facing the void of nothing over creating a potential false reality as a security blanket, again, either form of blind faith hinders any courage as it is a manifestation of cowardice derived from giving away all personal responsibility, ending all intellectual challenge, and completely submitting one's will to this notion.

Basically, claiming there is no god, becomes an athiests' god.

And it is the faith in their being "correct" that they use as their security blanket.

Now I will add and admit that all three take comfort in their posistion, and all take courage to face one idea or another, I just think that the agnostic faces more possibilities and therefore takes more courage.

quote:
Probability is in the atheist's favor, but there is not yet a definitive answer.


I only agree with this in terms of any elaborate human definition of god, such as religious one.

Because god can easily be defined as the creator of existance, or even existance itself, and can easily be argued to exist in these terms.

quote:
I did read your posts but the ritualistic use of the word 'Belittle' got me wondering about the sincerity of intentions behind a discussion that evolves around god.


This was partially covered. There were two purposes behind my posts, one was genuine curiosity and debate on agnosticism and the existance of god, the other was addressing Witts demeanor which started in another thread entirely, which you may recall due having posted in it amongst this process.

Again, I think common ground exists, but confusion, or perhaps differing interpretations, over the term agnostic has hampered it.

Which potentially covers this point

quote:
The reason that led me to say that this is absurd was the question you were trying to solve. The concrete case at hand would be to see how god's existence or inexistence would influence my own existence.


I don't think everyone was clear on what was actually being debated.

quote:
The concrete case at hand would be to see how god's existence or inexistence would influence my own existence. After going through the pros and cons of each position comes the time to deliberate. Gods is not given to you on a silver plate, you must look for it. It's like the plans you make for the future. You decide what you want and work to make it happen. Agnosticism should be the interval period where you can flip your coin because it's all empty grounds, it shouldn't be something you nest in. It is a sham against the freedom we possess as decision making animals.


As for my take on your point here, I take issue with the notion that we get to choose what or who god is.

quote:
Agnosticism should be the interval period where you can flip your coin because it's all empty grounds


Aw, but from my perspective it is the most full of grounds, because it allows for all possibility and can choose to entertain them all, all while in search for the ultimate truth of the matter.

quote:
That's why I said that agnosticism is cowardice, embedding people with peter pan complex.


I wish to know exactly what you mean here, because again, depending on your intended meaning, I may have to argue that something such as peter pan complex may actually take courage to choose, not to ignorantly obtain, but to intellectually choose, as again you have deemed it cowardly, and as it may represent the keys to the kingdom as well.

Peter pan complex, again I'm unsure of your use, so please feel free to clarify, but to me can mean more than a refusal to "grow up" which can only be literal in terms of physical growth anyway.

Where I take such an idea is that to truly be fully enlightened one must maintain the mind of a child while encorporating practical and pragmatic "adult" mentalities.

I think the biggest scheme and crime against nature and human potential is the loss or intentional suppression of the limitless potential, not to mention the sheer joy, found in the what is often deemed the derogatory "child like mind".

But again, it can't be the only mentality, it must include practical means of survival and do so in harmony with itself and its surroundings.

Pupa, I would also like to ask if you would be so kind as to clarify your current posistions on the existance of god and any religious beliefs you may hold.

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
[  Edited by Ironwood at   ]
 38yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that pupa ria is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I used the peter pan complex in the threads context ( I took ur advice )
It's by assuming our responsibilities that we grow up. Theism and atheism have their responsibilities but I can't put my finger on any responsibility within the agnostic position (if you know some, tell me). I agree with you that we should see through a Childs eye and make of this world a playground. The joy of discovering, the untamed curiosity...
The other negative thing about agnosticism is that this confusion/skepticism edifies in all the areas of your life (not only in your religious beliefs). You kind of become inconsistent within yourself and it comes to a point where you stop functioning (at least that was my own experience) you just feel the need to find a lighthouse.

I said empty grounds because you can push away things at your own convenience, while in the other two positions there is a discipline in the order of things and here I would like to refer to Kant when he says that it's through discipline that we become free. Art maybe needs 1% of inspiration and the other 99% is work, yet at the end of it you feel liberation (maybe from the artwork itself )
All in all, I really don't have a deep-rooted opposition against agnosticism, it's something we should go through, it gives us a stepping stone.
It's like the Cheshire cat said, doesn't matter if you go left or right all roads lead to the queen of hearts.
As it comes to my position I believe in a god that believes in me. So yes I struggle to become the best of me. I also believe in words, symbols and maggots ( I should, they will be feasting on me ). Scuze me if my post isn't coherent enough, I'm sick and high on pain killers, next time I'll mix them up with absinthe.

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"I'm the mirror that will make you invisible"
 33yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that ChrisD is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I think I'm beginning to see pupa ria and wittgenstein's argument more clearly.

In reality, the only way you could be a true agnostic was if you were only exposed to the labels and their definitions - theist, one who believes in a god, and atheist, one who does not believe in a god. Only then would you have to withhold any judgment because it would be a perfect coin toss at that point.

Once genuine research is done, there's no way you wouldn't begin to lean towards one or the other. I have considered myself all three at different points in my life.

Agnosticism could only ever be an extremely rare pit stop when the evidence appears equal on both sides.

From what I've seen, "agnostics" with an atheist lean choose to label themselves this way so they appear more open minded and less threatening and can more easily midwife wavering theists to the atheist side. Bill Maher is a perfect example of this.

Strangely, when I consider "agnostics" with a theist lean, they are typically less concerned with any kind of indoctrination.

"I'm not sure which side is right but I feel there just has to be a god." - this is the kind of person I'm talking about.

This type of person usually hasn't thought critically about the issue and bases much of their reasoning on intuition.

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"The truth will set you on fire"
 37yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Wyote is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
I only agree with this in terms of any elaborate human definition of god, such as religious one.

Because god can easily be defined as the creator of existance, or even existance itself, and can easily be argued to exist in these terms.


And that was the context I was using it in, as that's how it's typically understood.

Also the reason I consider myself a theist.

Also to ChrisD: Just because a person opts to use their intuition, it does not mean they have not thought critically first. Intuition is the ability to draw upon information within the sub-conscious. Intuition is more than just a feeling, in my humble opinion. I agree with your generalities, but they are over simplified.

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"A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge. - Thomas Carlyle"
 33yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that ChrisD is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
Also to ChrisD: Just because a person opts to use their intuition, it does not mean they have not thought critically first. Intuition is the ability to draw upon information within the sub-conscious. Intuition is more than just a feeling, in my humble opinion. I agree with your generalities, but they are over simplified.


quote:
This type of person usually hasn't thought critically about the issue and bases much of their reasoning on intuition.


I agree with you, that's why I used the term "usually." I recognize that there are and always will be exceptions with generalities like that. This is just typically what I see in people.

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"The truth will set you on fire"
 43yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that Ironwood is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
theist, one who believes in a god, and atheist, one who does not believe in a god. Only then would you have to withhold any judgment because it would be a perfect coin toss at that point.

Once genuine research is done, there's no way you wouldn't begin to lean towards one or the other. I have considered myself all three at different points in my life.

Agnosticism could only ever be an extremely rare pit stop when the evidence appears equal on both sides.


The problems here that are not being addressed, perhaps part of Wyote's mentioned over simplification, are at least two that I see.

One is, is leaning one way a disqualifier of agnosticism? Does believing equal knowing or actual fact?

And two, and by far the more important one, is the very definition of the term god.

It is the stopping point even religions can't agree on, even within their own specific religions.

Calling the source of existance god is by no means an adequate definition, and any other definition is beyond human capacity and current knowledge so far as humanity has been able to witness, comprehend, or otherwise provide.

And worshipping such a defined deity in standard cult fashion is simply beyond absurd.

And here is why there is plenty of room for agnosticism and why its primary tenets are still arguably among the most honest and intellegent I have come across.

The main thought processes and philosophies that hold a god as self evident or the only sensible posistion are based off of the observation of the obvious systematic, often deemed intelligent, design of the natural universe.

One, this leaves open all sorts of possible solutions in terms of explaining what we percieve as reality.

However, when getting to the bottom of it all, the argument goes something like this.

God is obvious because someone had to make all this and its "intellegently" designed systems,.

Which comes right back to the question of, well, ok, if that is the case and god, or an intelligent designer is so obvious because of existance's complexity and vastness, then this god is obviously very complex, well, then who the fuck made god.

The obvious question by their own model that brings them such "conclusive" evidence, all while ironcally destroying it.

Hogwash.

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"The Greatest Enemy of Knowledge is Not Ignorance, It is the ILLUSION of Knowledge. Stephen Hawking"
 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that wittgensteins is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
One is, is leaning one way a disqualifier of agnosticism? Does believing equal knowing or actual fact?


This is an interesting point, and I see what you're getting at. Sometimes we believe something for reasons quite separate from the evidence which might make such a claim good. But is this too generous a conception of "belief"? Surely when we assent to a belief worthy of the name we have sufficient evidence? I believe I will wake up tomorrow morning, but I may not; yet surely this is different from a dyed-in-the-wool faith-head's blind assent to the tenets of the Nicene Creed. Neither is a certainty; only one is rational.

If the whole notion of God is so hedged around with confusion that it defies any rational grounding, then agnosticism is indeed the most attractive position. You may think that any such toleration of God-talk is tantamount to a theistic concession: no-one even bothers to talk about whether pixies exist, even though there is almost equivalent justification for both views. Roughly speaking, this is the nub of my objection to agnosticism. And talk about which doctrine requires the most "courage" to hold is neither here nor there:- it is before the tribunal of reason, concerning matters of truth or untruth, where they should really concern us.

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I'm think I'm losing faith in God. - Page 3
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