Root

posted January 7th, 2016, 2:01 am


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February 27th, 2015, 3:43 pm

GreenKrog

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Looks like maybe Dr Bernt has a few triggers of her own.

Everything she just said was true. If you are even remotely considering the god of the bible to be all-knowing AND all-loving, you seriously need to reconsider. Any god who would make transgender kids 'as a test' is essentially equal to a parent putting their child in a room that bear traps with sandwiches on it, saying 'dont touch those', and starving their kid.

There are only four options;
God exists, and he knows of all of our pain, and does nothing about it: he is not all loving
God exists, and he doesn't know of all of our pain, and fixes what he can: he is not all knowing
God exists, knows of all of our pain, and cannot do anything about some of it: he is not omnipotent
Option 4: God doesn't exist.

Anyone who wants to hate on me now for being atheist, I welcome it. Just tell me which of the four options above you subscribe to before you do.

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January 7th, 2016, 2:31 am

Yan Mouson

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Ah yes, the Problem of Evil. I absolutely subscribe to Option 4, but I do have to say that there's a logical fallacy there. The argument goes that God, being omniscient, omnipotent and perfectly good, should eliminate all pain and evil from the world.

However, this does not account for the fact that a lot of pain and evil, arguably most of it, is caused by people. To eliminate all evil would be to severely restrict human freedom. This raises a question: is the common good more important than free will? Many would argue that free will is itself a more important good, and that therefore God is justified in favoring it. Furthermore, it could be argued that God effectively does eliminate all evil and pain by rewarding the good and punishing the evil after death with either Heaven or Hell which, being for all eternity, kind of make our Earthly existence seem like not that big a deal by comparison.

Again, I don't believe in God, but I do believe in logic and I can't keep my mouth shut where it is concerned.

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January 7th, 2016, 11:31 am

GreenKrog

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@Yan Mouson: Because god could not possibly have created a world or a code in humans to make them operate without evil, but still have free will?

Think about it this way. I program a computer to produce antivirals. I give it the capacity to learn and decide which antivirals to make and how to test them. I have created a machine that has free will in this regard.
Why exactly would I then go ahead and program it to ALSO know how to make viruses that can kill people? It's ok, I will just put in a line of code that says 'dont do that, I am just putting it there so you could use it, but dont'. That is what the advocate of the free will argument is saying.
I hope that the following videos from TMM will help explain why the notion of free will being ok under an all-loving god is outright false.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvTcQs8SE2Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxWYOQYdNv4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzgV_ebia84

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January 7th, 2016, 2:50 pm

Yan Mouson

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@GreenKrog: You make a good point there. Indeed, God could have created a system in which free will is restricted in a way that prevents evil. One might argue that restricting free will is wrong, but then again, our free will is already restricted by the laws of physics. A world in which murder is physically impossible, for instance, would be objectively better than this one.

Of course, then I can go back to the Original Sin. God did actually create a world without evil and called it the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve actively sought knowledge of sin and, in acquiring such knowledge, were banned from Eden and sent to a world where such sin could exist. The existence of evil is thus our divine punishment.

... Why am I even arguing this? I don't even believe in that stuff, I'm just a stickler for details. I really need to learn to shut up. Personally, I don't believe in the existence of a specific God, but I also believe that, if one does exist, he probably cares about us about as much as we care about our Sims characters.

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January 7th, 2016, 3:02 pm

GreenKrog

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@Yan Mouson: Original sin is one of the sickest fucking things I can imagine. Put it another way;

I give birth to a child. I fill my living room with bear traps, and let my baby go loose in there. I tell them don't touch the bear traps (I give them no reason whatsoever except 'I said so').
I wonder if maybe child protective services would throw my ass in jail until the day I die, or if it will be the babies own fault for aquiring said knowledge by getting it's brain cut in half by a bear trap?

IF you say 'they were actively seeking the knowledge', the tree was the tree of knowledge, of right and wrong. Before they ate the fruit, they had no way of knowing if it was right or wrong to eat the fruit. One god tells them 'dont eat it', another god tells them 'dude, eat it', and they go with the most recent information, which is the snake telling them to eat it.

Simply put, saying we are at fault for this is willfully saying god cant be at fault for anything, even when given this direct evidence.

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January 8th, 2016, 1:15 am

Yan Mouson

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@GreenKrog: Hey, I'm in complete agreement with you here. Just playing Devil's advocate. I like arguing (when done in a polite manner) and trying to debate from the other team's point of view is like playing on hard mode. It's kind of fun, and informative at times.

Still, what I realized doing this is that you can't defeat religion with logic. Religion uses a crapload of circular reasoning to make itself effectively logic-proof.

Best worst argument I've ever heard: "God has to be real because I know in my heart that he is." Seriously, someone actually did say that. So, if God exists because the guy has faith, and the guy has faith because God is real, then you're basically stuck in an infinite loop of stupid. You just can't argue with that kind of insanity.

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January 8th, 2016, 4:09 am

Grenartia

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@GreenKrog:

Of course, as per your very example, even we can create mindless robots, doing whatever we want them to. The real skill is to create an individual with the capacity to do bad things, but who chooses to do good instead.

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January 8th, 2016, 3:06 pm

Yan Mouson

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@Grenartia: Not necessarily. You could also create a system in which doing bad things is physically impossible. For example, a system where one cannot lift an item that doesn't belong to them, sort of like Thor's Hammer. Or one where everyone is immune to most major injuries.

This may sound insane, but we're talking God, here. If God decided what the laws of physics are, nothing's impossible.

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January 7th, 2016, 7:12 am

Stephanie (Guest)

Options

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Option 5: God exists and doesn't know or care about anything. He's got better stuff to do.
Option 6: God might exist, he might not. We won't know for certain until it's too late. So lead a relatively moral life and be nice.

I was raised presbyterian and brainwashed from an early age. We were told that god existed and I'm sure that training stuck with a lot of people. When I hit a certain age, I had to go to catechism class in order to become a full member of the church. Although I made it all the way through, I didn't buy most of what they were preaching and began to rethink everything.

I stumbled across Bertrand Russell's "Why I am not a christian" and everything clicked into place. Thankfully, my parents didn't give me any grief about my pushing away from the church, but I'm a happier person for having made up my mind.

The whole issue I have with religion in general is that it's all based on faith and no one can prove things one way or another.

In other words, out of a kajillion different belief systems, only one (or maybe no one), is correct.

What really sucks is when a religion decides that non-believers are all scum and should die, forcibly converted or be generally abused. If you have to force people to follow your idea of god (or politics), then maybe something's wrong with what you believe.

I consider myself agnostic. I've never seen any sign of any deity and logically, I can't prove the non-existence of one. The best I can do is to shrug my shoulders and try to be as moral as I can given the circumstances.

Some people have told me that I should go to church to play it safe, even if I don't believe. If it turns out there is actually a god, I think he/she/it would think more highly of me if I was just nice on my own and wasn't a complete hypocrite.

For now, I'll just follow His Noodly Goodness, the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

Ramen

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January 7th, 2016, 11:20 am

GreenKrog

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@Stephanie: You, I like.

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January 7th, 2016, 8:07 am

AndreaAD (Guest)

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As a polytheist I believe that all the various gods of human history exist and call to their own peoples. Personally I follow the Norse gods making me Asatru, I also think that we are how we are because the gods saw to it that humanity can exist in many permutations and it's our jobs to accept everyone as they are and the gods themselves are busy dealing with the big stuff and don't generally have time to worry over the happenings of most of our individual lives. Though a practical part of me accepts that there's a 50% chance that there literally is nothing after this and if so then there will be nothing that is ME to care that there isn't anything.

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January 7th, 2016, 11:19 am

GreenKrog

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@AndreaAD: My grandfather was a Mennonite Christian. When I asked him about Norse gods and how they fit in to his philosophy, he answered simply: of course they were real, but they were angels under the one god. I quite like that, because it doesn't discount every other religion, and doesn't cause derision and strife.
Personally, I feel that if there are gods, they really do have better things to do than bother with us mortals. That is the basic premise of the Hindu religion - the gods do what they do, and we just have to live with it. The destroyer destroys. The grower grows. As it has been for most polytheistic religions - the god of war creates war, because that is what he does. It isn't an act of evil, it is simply what he does.

What I am saying is, despite being a hardened atheist myself, what you appear to subscribe to is not hurting anyone and not logically impossible (as the all-knowing, all-powerful, all-loving monotheistic god is). So good on you. :)

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January 7th, 2016, 9:05 am

DCFAN (Guest)

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Well having an out of body experience and almost dying in the process makes me believe in an afterlife. Could I have been hallucinating as my brain shut down? Possibly, but I don't believe that was the case.

2nd point is there a God? Yes, but her motives and beliefs probably get twisted by the religions that supposedly worship her. BTW-twist the story of Adam and Eve around, where god created eve first and Adam second. Where Adam succumbed to the temptation of the snake, and got both him and eve kicked out of the garden of Eden. Would a male dominated priesthood change the story so it was the woman's fault?

I do believe god is a she or non-gendered. As to why evil exists in the world, that was our collective choice not God's.

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January 7th, 2016, 11:12 am

GreenKrog

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@DCFAN: Gen 1:27 "So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them."

Sounds a whole lot like god could be both male and female, both, or neither.

As for Adam/Eve, the scripture says that Adam was made first, Lilith second (without using a rib). Lilith refused to submit, so she was thrown out of the garden, and Eve was made from Adam's rib so she would have to submit. This follows the Babylonian demonology, from the time the Jews wandered.
I've never heard any scripture to say a woman was first, only that Adam and Lilith were created at the same time.

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January 7th, 2016, 2:51 pm

Yan Mouson

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@DCFAN: I would assume non-gendered. Why would God even need a fixed gender? Being omnipotent, couldn't God be whatever gender it damn well please?

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January 7th, 2016, 4:54 pm

Erin (Guest)

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@Yan Mouson: ^seconded

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January 8th, 2016, 4:05 am

Grenartia

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@GreenKrog:

Option 5: God is all loving, knowing and omnipotent, but respects our free will too much to directly intervene.

As odd as it may sound, for demonstration of this concept, I cite that one episode of Futurama where Bender plays god, then meets god.

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January 8th, 2016, 7:35 pm

CuteDress&TwinPonytails

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" Option 5: God is all loving, knowing and omnipotent, but respects our free will too much to directly intervene. "

* This makes the most reasonable sense to me.

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January 8th, 2016, 8:17 pm

GreenKrog

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@CuteDress&TwinPonytails: Exactly, right? So as a loving parent, we should teach our children how to light things on fire in a whole bunch of methods, and tell them they shouldn't do it, and train them to hate a specific group of people, but tell them they shouldn't kill those people with fire.
I mean, as an all loving parent, I respect their free will SO MUCH that I will teach them how to commit horrible acts of genocide and let them make up their own minds!

Wait.. hold on. I am getting a call on the line.. whats that? A parent who does this has their children taken away for endangerment and abuse? I don't understand, it is the kids free will. So why shouldn't I teach them how to be the worlds biggest monster, and then let them decide if they will be or not? You are saying I should only teach my children good things and remove the tools of terror and pain from their hands? But then they wouldn't have free will!

/fucking sarcasm over.

Don't ever try to use the free will argument to justify god creating people with the capacity to do evil.

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January 9th, 2016, 4:17 am

mittfh

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Strip away much of the theistic-inspired bits of what the character of Jesus allegedly did, an da lot of what's left is essentially altruism.

"Think of others before your self" is a little too simplistic (after all, it's generally a good idea to ensure you have sufficient resources to ensure your safety and survival), but empathising with those less fortunate than yourself and at least attempting to do something about it (rather than the theistic "The rich man in his castle, the poor man at his gate, God made them high and lowly" or the corporatistic "If they're less fortunate than me, it's their own fault so they should sort themselves out - they shouldn't expect any help from anyone else, let alone me!")

However, you don't need religious justification to engage in altruism - you should do it because it's good for society as a whole. Besides which, *if* there is a deity that judges people according to their actions in life, I'd certainly hope it would judge based on how much good a person had done in society, rather than on the number / frequency of rituals carried out, the quantity / proportion of money given to religious leaders or adherence to certain lifestyle practices (e.g. wearing loose-fitting clothing that hides the body shape and covers all skin and hair including the face, minimising contact with people of the opposite reproductive configuration - and then only when chaperoned, actively showing contempt to people whose beliefs / lifestyles are different to yours, treating people of one reproductive configuration as little more than dumb animals - most of which were common in Western societies until relatively recently).

As for my religious persuasion, brought up Christian, now agnostic. I like the concept of a deity, but more as a scientist watching their experiment and *very* occasionally intervening rather than the interactive "agony uncle" type who maintains a Santa-style list of those who've been naughty and nice that determines people's destination upon death.

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February 19th, 2016, 7:31 pm

Lex-Kat (Guest)

Love the comic

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As an agnostic, I feel the need to tell you that sometimes, GreenKrog, you are just an ass. I'm not going to argue with you about it. But you really are.

You attack people for their religion, constantly telling them what they can't be just because you don't believe. I have seen you tear into people who have just made a simple comment about what their beliefs are. You have attacked CuteDress&TwinPonytails more times than I can recount. And all because you believe that anyone who is a Christian is insane.

That is a jackass thing to do. I would suggest you knock it off, as you don't know everything.

I will continue to read the comic. I like the comic. I usually respect you. But when it comes to your beliefs on religion, you can shove it up your ass.

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February 19th, 2016, 7:51 pm

GreenKrog

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@Lex-Kat: I am fully aware that I am a monster and that I am deserving of scorn. Thank you for reminding me.

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February 20th, 2016, 11:32 am

Lex-Kat (Guest)

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@GreenKrog: You are not a monster. You are a storyteller and an artist.

But you are also, at times, harsh when you need not be. Just try not to be.

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