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The Quick and Easy Answer

Often times a Christian will demand that I explain why something is the world is the way it is or how come people behave a certain way. Their view is that God made it that way. But their demand takes it a step further, if I can’t explain exactly how science explains something with 100% certainty, than God must have done it.

How come we look at a painting and see beauty in it? How come we feel guilty when we lie or steal? How can science explain love? The fact is that science does have answers for all these questions. But are we 100% certain of those answers? No. Is there one answer which can easily explain the entire universe? Aside from 42, I don’t think there is. We can say that “God did it,” but that doesn’t make it true. We can say that we are 100% certain that “God did it,” but that doesn’t make it true. Instead, all that really does is to cut short our search for the real answers.

Some people want a quick and easy answer to all the questions they can think of. They want that all-in-one answer so badly that they are willing to make it up and be satisfied with that. Personally, I think that is pretty boring and not very satisfying. Not to mention, it wouldn’t be true. We live in an uncertain world and we are just beginning to understand how some aspects of this universe work. Through science, we are learning more and more each day and while I cannot answer all of the questions of the universe with 100% certainty, I think the scientific method is doing a pretty good job so far.

If you want a quick and easy answer, go to Church. That doesn’t mean that their answer is true, jus that it is an answer. If you want to really learn about the Universe and the people in it, than start by taking a few science classes and learn how we know what we know and to what certainty we know it.

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  • http://www.myspace.com/misstea43 Miss Tea

    You seem to debate quite a few fundamentalist Christians. These are the ones who believe in the literal truth of the bible, etc. They are just one group of Christians. Most of us know there are many mysteries in life that religion cannot answer. The important questions- what happens after death? Resurrection of the soul? Resurrection of the body? Return to the Source? We’ll all know for certain, one day.

    Why do so many human beings prosyletize? Rarely does anyone ever convert to the opposite viewpoint as a result of argument. So why do we do this? Some governments have looked at all the wars, loss of life, etc. that have resulted from religious differences. They’ve tried to solve the problem in every which way. From Norway’s early solution – make Lutheranism the law; to Soviet Union – outlaw all religion. To our solution – allow all religions or antireligions to co-exist – it still hasn’t stopped the attempted conversion process…..

    • admin

      I do debate and discuss religion with many different kinds of Christians from the fundamentalists to the vague higher powerists.

      I have written a blog previously on de-conversion and I have found that argument, discussion, and debate work really well. These things don’t work immediately, but at he end of the day, they do work.

      I strongly support the right to freely exercise ones religion, but I also support the right to freely criticize religion and to freely laugh at religion. I have no wish to outlaw religion and would fight to ensure that people can believe whatever ridiculous things they choose to believe. But that doesn’t mean that I won’t call them out on those ridiculous beliefs. Having the right to religion does not excuse people from responsibility or protect them from ridicule. If I told you that I believe Elvis was my god and that he is alive and well in 7-11, would you not laugh at me? If I mentioned my Elvis belief in a job interview, should the interviewer take that into consideration when deciding if I should be hired or not? People laugh at Tom Cruise for his religious beliefs, but as soon as someone laughs at Christianity, then they have overstepped the line and have some how become “intolerant.”

  • Sophos

    Yes, thinking you know anything for certain – is a sign of ignorance. Yet, I have no problem with anyone believing what they believe. But, when they start getting legislation passed that support their false beliefs… that is where I draw the line.

    Making laws forbidding certain acts because of Christian beliefs, kind of calls God an idiot and goes against what Christianity is supposed to be about. The big thing in Christianity is “free-will.” Without it there is no responsibility (so we are told), without responsibility there is no judgement…. without judgement, there is no Heaven and Hell. So, to make a law… say forbidding abortion, is in a sense taking away a person’s “free-will” on the choice to have an abortion. How can one make good decisions, if those decisions are being made for us? What this does (putting Christian beliefs into Law), is to say that God has no control over us, but because we believe in him we are going to do what he would want done. If he wanted it done, don’t you think he would have the power to make it so that human fetusses are un-abortable?

    But, they do not see it because they are the righteous children, and that is exactly how I perceive them. They are like children who believe in a Santa Clause. They have blinders on and only see what they are told to see from their corrupt institutions.

    I say kill ‘em all and let their God sort ‘em out!!! I have lost all temperance with the intellectually crippled religious fanatics that we call Christians.

    • admin

      Again, I just want to make it clear that I am firmly against killing. Besides, I don’t think you can kill an idea by killing the people who hold that idea. The only way to kill and idea is in a war of ideas, by showing that the idea is stupid and ridiculous.
      -Staks

      • Mr. X

        That’s interesting; my views differ.

        Personally, I think that you CAN “kill” an idea, by killing everyone who believes in it, and burning books wholesale, etc.

        You can even kill knowledge! How much knowledge, and how many ideas, have we already lost to these blunt methods? More than you think.

        On the plus side, it actually IS possible to “uninvent” nuclear weapons…at least, until someone invents them again. But you’d have to uninvent a whole lot of related scientific knowledge to prevent that from happening.

        Anyway, the “information superhighway” makes the “book-burning approach” much less efficient than it once was; you’d have to disable this entire network for it to be reliable.

  • http://www.myspace.com/misstea43 Miss Tea

    I think it is unwise for anyone to bring religious preference or beliefs into a job interview, unless the company is religion-based, such as a church facility.

    Sir, I’m curious whether conversion of Christians is your goal, and to what are you trying to convert Christians. Actually, I don’t get the impression that it is just Christians you are after, but people of any religious persuasion.

    I’m not a big fan of ridicule, whether the ridicule be related to religions, science, evolution, or sexual orientation. So I won’t be one to defend your right to ridicule people. It gets into the politically-correct debate and how far that should go. The New York Post had to suck up to the consequences of their shot-chimp cartoon and apologize. What happened regarding the White House surrounded by a big watermelon patch?

    We have laws against killing. There is also a Christian commandment forbidding killing. That takes away our free-will to kill someone. The anti-abortionists believe abortion is killing. I don’t agree, but that’s what they believe and they back their beliefs with more than just religious arguments. The courts don’t accept their arguments as being sufficient to overturn Roe v. Wade, but at some point the courts may.

    “I say kill ‘em all and let their God sort ‘em out!!! I have lost all temperance with the intellectually crippled religious fanatics that we call Christians.” I hope you’re kidding. This is an extreme generalization and an extreme reaction.

    • admin

      When people are born, they don’t believe in a deity. In fact, they don’t believe much of anything (except food and dirty diapers). Trust me, I have a newborn. But before babies can even speak, their parents and community are already working hard to convert them to a particular religion. One of my goals is to de-convert them once they are adults. Please see my blog on de-conversion.

      Now it is one thing to “not be a fan” of ridicule, but it is something completely different to say, “I won’t be one to defend your right to ridicule people.” I am not a fan of Christianity, but I will and have fought very hard to defend the rights of Christians and others to hold whatever ridiculous beliefs they so choose. That is called freedom!

      While there is the commandment to “thou shall not murder” there is also the commandment, “thou shall keep the sabbath day.” Both of which are punishable by death by stoning according to the Bible. God also commands murder in many other places in the Bible. So while I disagree with the Christians who kill abortion doctors and think that they should be subject to human laws, they do have the Biblical High Ground. In fact, they are too liberal in their biblical view. They should be out there stoning all kinds of people according to the Bible. I think that is wrong of course and so do all Christians. But the fact is that it is all in the “good book.”

      Finally, I think you are being disingenuous when you say that you don’t ridicule anyone for their beliefs. You just don’t ridicule people who hold popular beliefs. But I am pretty sure that you think the guy who thinks he saw Elvis in the convenience store is crazy just as I do. The difference is that I am honest about it and you are not. If you see someone talking to his imaginary friend, I doubt very much that you would take him seriously… except of course if that imaginary friend were named Jesus.
      -Staks

  • The Philosopher

    Nice post very interestingly true. I’m noticed that religion is going down in every state which is from our point of view an improvement but for the Christians it is not an improvemenet. I see people marching, protesting, and talking about this issue on t.v. in my philosophical vision. Why isnt the blogs on myspace anymore? Well who email me.

    -LOÏC

  • Mr. X

    This argument is generally referred to as “The God of the Gaps.”

    I think the best argument against it, is that it requires a “the glass is half empty” perspective on scientific methods and progress.

    I like to point out, scientific knowledge will always be defined both by what it does, and what it DOES NOT, encompass; there will ALWAYS be a distant horizon, beyond which uncharted territory lies. Every answer will always generate more questions; there will always be SOMETHING that we don’t know.

    I believe that this is the basic reason, why people wish to reject the scientific “worldview”: not only does science impose limitations on our knowledge, but it implies that such limitations will always exist, no matter how our body of knowledge continues to expand. Knowledge never will be complete; and we will never have absolute certainty of anything, only theories.

    Some theists consider the big bang, and say “THAT is as FAR BACK as your knowledge reaches? Pitiful!”; rather than acknowledging that we’ve made tremendous strides in our understanding of how the present-day universe came into being. From this perspective, I don’t think it’s possible to be impressed by ANY amount of scientific progress.

    To them, the glass is half empty, and it always will be – because even if we do find a way to discern what preceded the “big bang”, we will eventually reach a new horizon, a new limitation on how far back we can deduce the universe’s history. And if we overcome that barrier, there will be another one behind it.

    So, I suspect that the “glass” will never be entirely full; that science will not and cannot ever have “all of the answers”; and thus, there will always be a place to insert the “God of the Gaps”, somewhere.

  • http://myspace.com/mushroombaconsam SamStaurophobia

    /sigh

    It is sad… That people refuse to answer their questions with the “God did it!” answer instead of a real and true answer.

    It actually depresses me.

  • Joe Freshwater

    There is no “Quick and Easy” answer to anything there are just facts,theories,truths,untruths,proofs,and evidence that’s all. So no one can say the answers to what happens in life/world is because of God and any Gods for sure and they shouldn’t believe the answers to what happens in life/world are because of God and any Gods either. These people that are Christians don’t know that the reason why everything happens in life/world must be because of God there’s no proof and evidence to God being real and any Gods being real at all so what these Christians need to do is wake up and smell the roses and realize there’s no proof and evidence that God is real and there’s no proof and evidence that Religions real either and there never ever will be any proof and evidence that God is real and that religion is real and once these Christians and every Christian realizes this they will come to reality and become Atheists or Agnostics. Once these Christians and every Christian realizes all of this they will look into Science,what Science has to say about the Universe and world,Evolution,and they will become Atheists and Agnostics too.

  • Sophos

    Yes, my “kill ‘em all” comment was not an edict to start killing Christians again (though I have to admit, if they started having Lion pits at the football stadiums, I would be one of the first in line to cheer for the Lions as they ate the far right-eous :-) (joking again, though only kind of lol)

    It was meant as a metaphor to the phrase “they are dead to me,” meaning I do not want to acknowledge their existence ever again. This of course came from several debates (that of course turned heated and became enthralled in emotion) that day. A quick summary of those debates were how the new law in California concerning gay-marriage was good, because homosexuality is a sin (this somehow means that gays have no human rights?) and how illegal immigrants are “evil” and should all be sent to their homeland… I said to them, “How very Christian of you.”

    I on the other hand, because I act more Christian than most Christians (“Christian” meaning a follower of Jesus’ teachings), will not turn my back on them. I will continue to Q & A with them, to plant seeds within their reason and hope that someday those seeds get the nourishment from a different light and start to grow. Thus, they are not “dead to me” and never will be… Though I am sure I will continue to have difficult days and spout out things that can be taken as extreme. I shall go forth and try to drag others out of the cave and show them that the shadows on the wall are not “real.” (A reference to Plato’s Allegory of the Cave).