Saturday, December 29, 2007

More on Atheism...




Nobody talks so constantly about God as those who insist that there is no God. -- Heywood Broun

A while back I did a post on atheism and gave my three most used “arguments” against the view. Again I am not out to “change” anyone nor am I wanting to get into heavy debate. Yet, the one that most either thought was not strong or was not the best seemed to be the idea that all men are born with the idea of a god that exists and must suppress this view in order to be an atheist. To me this is actually the strongest view as I see that most atheists once did believe in “god” but rejected the idea. I know of not one that started out stating there is no god and then tried to prove their position… which is still at least to me a rather strange thing to do if a god does not exist. Why argue about a god that does not exist if one does not exist? It seems like one arguing that one cannot fly as they are falling from an airplane… trying to convince the other person that they also cannot fly as they hit the ground. If god did not exist then to me at least there need not be any reason to discuss it or to try to convince others that one does not exist.

It amazes me to find an intelligent person who fights against something which he does not at all believe exists. --Mohandas Gandhi

Now, I found this idea is not new (at least not original with me) This is called theistic innatism, in fact the idea that there is no god is only recorded back as far as the 5th century bce so it seems that the view that one is born with the view that there is a god has more historical basis. Of course one might argue that superstitions and such also were more prevalent, yet that still does not prove that man is not born with the innate view that there is a god.

Still, as one person stated that he saw this view as not strong… it seems that if I was to ask this person, I bet he would reply his view that god does not exist came out of studying and science, both to me are not anti-god but if one can, would prove god more. I do not see science and faith as incompatible, in fact most of the greatest scientist professed a faith in God. I am not going to go through them now, yet Isaac Newton was one that even wrote a biblical commentary.

Now, I took the view out of Romans chapter one…
In Romans, Paul lays out that man has no excuse, “since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.” And that “men who suppress the truth by their wickedness”. Now, I am not stating that all atheists are “wicked” so please do not take that as what I am stating… What Paul is referring to is those who worshiped creation in place of the True God…

Now Paul does go on to state, “For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.”

If one just looks at creation, then one must realize that there is a design. If there is a design there need be a designer. So, the one thing an atheist needs prove to me is that design can happen without a designer then I will take real look atheism as a valid view.

But, if there is a design, then there need be a designer… even in the natural world, such as the Grand Canyon, in its design, water became the designer of the erosion. Yet, still one must go back to ask how water was designed. Keep working back to the Big Bang and find that somehow something must come out of nothing… which then leads us to Genesis in which God creates all out of nothing.

Now recently a few scientists created matter from light. They have known that this can be done for many years, yet no one has taken the time to do it until recently. Interestingly the very first thing God spoke into existence out of nothing was… light… and from light all matter came.

If there were no God, there would be no atheists. --G.K. Chesterton

Now, to state that one “knows for certain there is no god” then places one into the category of being all knowing… and if that be so, then has make oneself a “god” in and of themselves. Now, I know of no atheists that claim to know all things. Though some are not willing to admit that they are really agnostic, to not know is to state still the possibility of the existence of a god.

To sustain the belief that there is no God, atheism has to demonstrate infinite knowledge, which is tantamount to saying, "I have infinite knowledge that there is no being in existence with infinite knowledge" --Ravi Zacharias

Now, I find this to be true, that one who truly is searching will find their way to a philosophy, and as they dig deeper they will find themselves involved in “religion”… the issue is that a little philosophy will bring us to the idea that man is truly the highest of being… yet, a little more thought will make one realize that this is not the truth. There has to be something or someone higher… the deeper one digs in philosophy they will realize that one can become lost in the faith of man and in all the ideas of man’s philosophy. I see it can shake one to the core, yet in the end if one truly seeking truth, truth reveals itself and pushes on deeper and deeper into the realm of faith. Can a man live as an atheist without faith… no, one must place all faith in one’s own understanding though… and I for one do not think I have that much faith!

A little philosophy inclineth man's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion. --Francis Bacon

Again, I see that the idea that one must suppress belief in a god has more validity than to not believe. Yet, to believe in a god is not enough to find Truth. One must have faith. Faith is a gift from God it depends totally on what one places this faith in… yet if one cannot beleive in God, to admit that one lacks faith to do so, is the beginning of gaining enough faith for one's path to find Truth.

Be blessed,
iggy

5 comments:

Matt McCormick said...

Lots of essays relevant to your points about atheism here:

Atheism Blog: 

www.atheismblog.blogspot.com


The suggestion here seems to be that in the very act of objecting to belief in God the atheist somehow actually affirms that there is one, or that they actually believe in one. This is a baffling and beside the point. When a doctor considers a patient's symptoms and concludes that she is not pregnant, does entertaining the possibility somehow make her pregnant? Or that the doctor actually believes that she is? If my kids ask me whether or not the Tooth Fairy exists and I say no, does my asserting that somehow show that in fact I really do believe there is one?

The amateur psychoanalyzing about what the atheist REALLY believes when they say there is no God is completely beside the point. This atheist spends a lot of time arguing that God doesn't exist, not because I am closet believer, but because it's false and a frighteningly large number of people don't realize that and invoke the worst convoluted logic to defend it.

MM

iggy said...

matt,

again, as I stated I am not out to change you... I just think you are missing the point.

I do not believe in the Easter bunny, yet I do not develop philosophical argument to prove he is not real. In your example of the pregnant woman... If the doctor is looking at a woman to see if her symptoms entertain she might be pregnant, then she might be... No the possibility does not make her pregnant, but a good doctor will not assume that there is no way she can be without actually looking into it to rule out the possibility.

So also your tooth fairy example is that not everyone on every continent believes in the tooth fairy... so again you need to find a better example or at least a more universal belief that is found to not be true.

SO this leads us back to square one. And I ask, did you once believe in a god? And then did you by reject the idea? then what I stated is true.

Now, again, if I was an atheist, I would not waste my time proving to everyone that there was no god any more than I would try to prove to every one that the moon is not made of cheese... if it was not true I would not waste my time on it... but then that is another issue...

So you believe in logic? In that how does logic work in a system that is relative and chaotic and without order? How do you then define truth? If you state that truth is even a abstract absolute, then it is a universal that becomes a higher "thing" than man and is a "god". So as far as convoluted logic to state that an atheist can use logic goes against the core of atheism as to say that the Golden Compass just is not a construction of truth to replace God...

Does then the replacement of God not become a god? It does... there is no way around that.

TO set yourself up as the standard of truth is stating you are god... and know all things.

OK, answer my questions in all honesty...

iggy

Joe C said...

Iggy,

You should know better than to argue with the Atheists, they're absolutely right. Right? Tisk.

They absolutely know there is no God. Question is, how can they be absolutely sure about anything? You've already addressed this. They're stealing our worldview when being 'logical' or 'affirmative' about something. There is no room for 'logic', absolutes, and truth, in a universe that came from nothing. Coming to that conclusion in and of itself is...well...logical. Coming from the Atheism side myself back in the day, I found this concept too esoteric for me to grasp, until I acknowledged I didn't know jack-shizah about anything.

Besides, the pitfall of Matt's "Pregnancy comparison" is that you can absolutely prove a woman is not pregnant. However, this can NEVER be the case with God. The Atheist is still stuck in the investigative phase with God, eternally stuck in it, no matter what they say or how 'made up' their mind is. They still have no proof of God's existence or lackthereof. You can quickly prove whether a woman is pregnant or not though. Can't with God. So it's an obvious apples and oranges comparison. A mere distraction to your greater point, which he unfortunately didn't see fit to address.

Why Matt, do you kick so hard against the current, if the current isn't there?

Regards,

Joe C

crash bang said...

There are multiple reasons why atheists argue so vehemently against the existence of God, but the fact that they do is not proof of the existence of God, which is what you seem to imply. Maybe some doth protesteth too much. And some are just fed up with religion being shoved down their throats at every turn. Some just like to argue. Some are horrified at the crap that goes on in the name of God. Some are just trolling. This new "the atheist doth protesteth too much" tactic is desperate.

And no, we don't start out believing in God. We're not born that way. We start out neutral on the subject. God is an omnipresent meme in American society. It's only because s/he is talked about constantly as if s/he is a real person, and at an early and impressionable age, that we accept the idea as gospel, uncritically. It is only as we become older and intellectually sophisticated that we either reject the idea, or rationalize it.

iggy said...

Crash Bang,

Funny I have never argued that Smurfs do not exist. I see that as reality and live my life.

Believe me many like me know how you feel about the "crap" of religion... and feel great sorrow for those who have been damaged by religion.

If I had not had an experience that I have had with Jesus who became more real to me than anything else I would have walked away. Yet, something profoundly changed in me. That is like the old adage, "If I have to explain, you would not understand."

I do agree though that often the atheist only desires to argue which is consistent to what the bible teaches of those who fight against God in general. (sorry just pointing that out) so they fulfill a self prophecy of being and acting as the Bible states the will... funny that a book of "myths" is able to be that accurate.

As far as people being born with an innate belief in a "god"... there are many philosophers great thinkers in history that backup my view. The point though is that the belief can be so suppressed that it comes to a point that God turns one over to their "choices" and they forget what they choose.

Meaning... at some point you made a choice between God (at least your version of Him) and human logic... you had to make a choice and did... thus proving you needed to reject God as valid to get to your own choice of world view.

iggy