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Non-believers - Ever prayed really hard for God to reveal himself?

blastula

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Well at some point I was becoming convinced of his arguments about Jesus's resurrection I think but then I looked at counter-arguments and lost faith in that.

Well he must have converted for some reason and apparently a major reason was due to the "evidence" he looked at.
BTW see also:
http://talkfreethought.org/showthre...-to-reveal-himself&p=6344&viewfull=1#post6344

Yes, you also say there, "But I think there are examples of atheists converting to Christianity so there must be some kind of evidence that Christianity is true."

Which is completely fallacious. Because somebody converted, there must be evidence?

No, that's trivially false. Somebody who is "dux" of their grade should know better. There are multiple reasons for belief that have nothing to do with considering evidence. But that kind of fallacious thinking is common coming from apologists. It's a very weird argument to come from an atheist, unless they aren't so dux.

Well I haven't 100% ruled them out yet. I'm an agnostic not a strong atheist.

So you're undecided about this evidence you bring up? Explain why it's so ambiguous for you.

Yes a lot of his reasons aren't convincing but some apologetics authors are to some extent - depending on the subject.

Specifically what?

This thread involves asking a question of non-believers.

So, aren't you a non-believer yourself? You should be able to answer it yourself.

The point of this thread is for people to share their opinions and experiences. It isn't all about me.

That's a dodge of the question. And any thread topic is open for challenge.
 

GenesisNemesis

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Nope. I never prayed in the religious sense, just in the "please don't happen" sense, even though I knew it wouldn't do anything.
 

excreationist

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Yes, you also say there, "But I think there are examples of atheists converting to Christianity so there must be some kind of evidence that Christianity is true."

Which is completely fallacious. Because somebody converted, there must be evidence?
So you're saying that for all of the following conversions:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_converts_to_Christianity_from_nontheism
absolutely NO evidence was involved?

BTW see here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence#Types_of_evidence
- Personal experience
- Scientific evidence
- Testimonial

I'm talking about that kind of evidence not necessarily something that you need in a formal debate, etc.

"Well I haven't 100% ruled them out yet. I'm an agnostic not a strong atheist."
So you're undecided about this evidence you bring up? Explain why it's so ambiguous for you.
I haven't 100.00000000000% ruled out Christianity yet. i.e. I'm not 100.000000% certain yet. That doesn't mean I'm 10% sure of Christianity, etc.

"Yes a lot of his reasons aren't convincing but some apologetics authors are to some extent - depending on the subject."
Specifically what?
I haven't looked into it much but some archaeological type things.

"This thread involves asking a question of non-believers."
So, aren't you a non-believer yourself? You should be able to answer it yourself.
I have already - see the first post. Now it is the turn for others.

"The point of this thread is for people to share their opinions and experiences. It isn't all about me."
That's a dodge of the question. And any thread topic is open for challenge.
Well I'm getting tired of endless questions demanding I explain why I'm not 100.00000000% convinced of atheism, etc.
 

excreationist

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....Which is completely fallacious. Because somebody converted, there must be evidence?

No, that's trivially false. Somebody who is "dux" of their grade should know better.
I just had to know mathematical formulas, etc, not know about philosophy and logical fallacies, etc. BTW during the end of grade 12 I questioned creationism seriously and the next year I gave up belief in it. It would have been quicker if it wasn't for anti-creationist books like "Telling Lies for God" being so full poor arguments. I mean I was aware of counter-arguments for most of the book.

There are multiple reasons for belief that have nothing to do with considering evidence.
It depends on what you mean by evidence.
e.g.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence#Types_of_evidence
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personal_experience

But that kind of fallacious thinking is common coming from apologists. It's a very weird argument to come from an atheist,
I'm a weak atheist - I prefer to call myself an agnostic.
 
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Keith&Co.

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A response like that indicates you've clearly done your research into this topic.
It looks like a believer, talks like a believer, and definitely argues like a believer. But it's wearing an 'I'm An Agnostic' Nametag.

I wonder if ExC would define 'Agnostic' as 'Someone who is not a strong atheist because he doesn't want to piss off God.'
 

excreationist

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"I haven't looked into it much but some archaeological type things."
A response like that indicates you've clearly done your research into this topic.
If by that you mean I haven't researched it properly, I would agree. Wow you really are contributing to this discussion.
 

excreationist

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It looks like a believer, talks like a believer, and definitely argues like a believer. But it's wearing an 'I'm An Agnostic' Nametag.
Well when I go to church I NEVER have holy communion. I don't attend the Bible studies anymore in my house. When they did Q & A services at church I'd ask hard questions about hell and science. I tell Christians that I don't believe in God. As far as arguing like a believer, the believers I know of say things like that you've got to pray to God for him to give you faith - or maybe it is the Holy Spirit. Some say to have a child-like faith and that God can't be understood. I disagree... I think I can understand the God of the Bible. He's simply a quite evil tyrant who defines love in funny ways.

I wonder if ExC would define 'Agnostic' as 'Someone who is not a strong atheist because he doesn't want to piss off God.'
No it's because I'm not CERTAIN that some god e.g. of those 3000+ religions don't exist. Maybe deism or pantheism or whatever is true.
 

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Nope. I never prayed in the religious sense, just in the "please don't happen" sense, even though I knew it wouldn't do anything.
Maybe shouting NO! and shitting your pants while you're pumping the brakes and cranking the steering wheel allows the voice and the sphincter to think they're contributing to solving the problem? A great big 'we're all in this together' effort of solidarity. It doesn't really help, but at least they don't look disinterested in the outcome.
 

blastula

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So you're saying that for all of the following conversions:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_converts_to_Christianity_from_nontheism
absolutely NO evidence was involved?

False. I am saying it's not necessarily involved. Any person's conversion or deconversion doesn't tell you anything about the existence of god without knowing the basis of the belief. For use in arguments, it doesn't matter who believes what, it matters why they believe it. You're skipping the 'why' part, which is an appeal to authority fallacy, and which is a common apologist way of thinking. You may be new atheism and so haven't gotten out of old bad habits.

I'm talking about that kind of evidence not necessarily something that you need in a formal debate, etc.

Doesn't matter. The logic is the same whether in formal or informal debate.

I haven't 100.00000000000% ruled out Christianity yet. i.e. I'm not 100.000000% certain yet. That doesn't mean I'm 10% sure of Christianity, etc.

If you're not even 10% sure of Christianity, that would mean you should have much greater doubt about the evidence than how your presenting it here. You seem to give it much more credence than if you only gave it 10% certainty.

"Yes a lot of his reasons aren't convincing but some apologetics authors are to some extent - depending on the subject."
Specifically what?
I haven't looked into it much but some archaeological type things.

This is a very unclear answer, but sounds like you're falling for some other fallacy. I'm not sure what archaeological evidence you are referring to, but generally apologists will say that, for instance, a town mentioned in the Bible has been found to be real. Do you really not understand why that's weak evidence for the bigger theistic claims? That Harry Potter mentions London doesn't make it reliable history. And this also ignores all the Bible accounts that are disputed by archaeology. This usually doesn't have to be explained to an atheist, since it is so very obviously a bad argument.

"This thread involves asking a question of non-believers."
So, aren't you a non-believer yourself? You should be able to answer it yourself.
I have already - see the first post. Now it is the turn for others.


Yeah, you strangely said you haven't tried. Just takes a few seconds, if you're really so interested. And it's pointless anyway as you should already understand the experience as I explained subsequently.

"The point of this thread is for people to share their opinions and experiences. It isn't all about me."
That's a dodge of the question. And any thread topic is open for challenge.
Well I'm getting tired of endless questions demanding I explain why I'm not 100.00000000% convinced of atheism, etc.

That wasn't my question. I said,

blastula said:
And your OP is a bit confusing since you've said you were a believer, which means apparently god was shown to you in some way such that you believed. When preachers talk about praying for god to reveal himself, that's all it means, that you end up believing in some way, in exactly the same way you once believed. You've already done what you are asking about here. Taking your word at face value, you later came to believe that your belief about god was mistaken. So, what is the point of your thread? You are unsure of your disbelief now? Or is this all a ruse?

You already were a believer, so you already know what it feels like to believe God has revealed himself to you. It didn't make a difference for you when you deconverted apparently. So, it's a pointless exercise for anybody, especially the deconverted. Well, it could work to talk yourself into believing simply by continuous suggestion, but that doesn't sound like a very worthy enterprise.

I just had to know mathematical formulas, etc, not know about philosophy and logical fallacies, etc.

So it was kind of pointless to bring up, and not to mention, gauche.

BTW during the end of grade 12 I questioned creationism seriously and the next year I gave up belief in it. It would have been quicker if it wasn't for anti-creationist books like "Telling Lies for God" being so full poor arguments. I mean I was aware of counter-arguments for most of the book.

OK, so here you do seem to understand the problem with argument from authority. It matters why they say it, not who says it.


I was talking about what is good evidence, and if you go to those links, you will see the weaknesses of those types, briefly discussed.

Personal experience - Wikipedia

An early belief of some philosophers of Ancient Greece was that the mind was like a recording device and simply kept somehow-objective records of what the senses experienced. This was believed in the Western world into the 20th century until cognitive psychology experiments decisively proved that it was not true, and that many events were simply filled in by the mind, based on what "should be". This, among other things, explained why eyewitness accounts of events often were so widely varied.

Testimony - 5 Philosophy - Wikipedia
In philosophy, a testimony is known as statements that are based on personal experience or personal knowledge. A statement is accepted on the basis of person's testimony if his or her asserting it renders it acceptable. We can also, rationally accept a claim on the basis of another person's testimony unless at least one of the following is found to be true:

  1. The claim is implausible;
  2. The person or the source in which the claim is quoted lacks credibility;
  3. The claim goes beyond what the person could know from his or her own experience and competence.[4
From the above, you should be able to see the problems in appealing to someone else's personal testimony or experience as evidence on the god question.

Scientific evidence also has its limitations. It all depends on context.

I'm a weak atheist - I prefer to call myself an agnostic.

I understand, and if I take you at your word, it's apparent you just haven't engaged in the arguments or the philosophy very deeply. Nothing wrong with that by itself, everyone starts from somewhere.
 

excreationist

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....Yeah, you strangely said you haven't tried. Just takes a few seconds, if you're really so interested.
I haven't tried lately - I think it is because I don't want to start serving God.

And it's pointless anyway as you should already understand the experience as I explained subsequently.
Well some people here have tried it anyway....
http://www.biblesociety.org.au/news/atheists-pray-for-40-days-for-god-to-reveal-himself-to-them

You already were a believer, so you already know what it feels like to believe God has revealed himself to you.
Not really. I just believed - I didn't really have a strong feeling of God's presence.

It didn't make a difference for you when you deconverted apparently. So, it's a pointless exercise for anybody, especially the deconverted.
Well my sisters think I'll be a Christian again and my wife wants me to be one.

So it was kind of pointless to bring up, and not to mention, gauche.
Some people say that me being dux means I'm quite intelligent.

From the above, you should be able to see the problems in appealing to someone else's personal testimony or experience as evidence on the god question.
No matter how bad it is it is still considered a form of "evidence".

I understand, and if I take you at your word, it's apparent you just haven't engaged in the arguments or the philosophy very deeply. Nothing wrong with that by itself, everyone starts from somewhere.
I have informally. BTW my main competition is Christians - I think I'm more rational than they are. Though I guess compared to atheists here you are more rational.
 

excreationist

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About me being dux... I went to a Christian school and the next two highest achievers were atheists. (then so was I soon after I started university) I went to a state primary school and a science teacher told the class that he didn't believe in evolution. Also at a museum the class went to, one of the displays said that some people believe in Adam and Eve - it didn't criticize that belief. Then when I was starting high school I went to a presentation run by creationists. One of the things they talked about were dragons - their explanation is that they were dinosaurs. Then I got about 15-20 creationist books and magazines. One of them was about 200+ pages and it just focused on fossil evidence of human evolution and missing links, etc. Those books and magazines gave counter-arguments to basically all of the common arguments against creationism.

Christians I know sometimes say that people sometimes need to pray for faith. On the other hand in high school I believed in God because creationism made sense to me.
 

excreationist

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You are kidding, arent you? What archeology shows is that most of the Bible is blatantly false. There were no glorious king David. There were no exodus from Egypt. etc.
I found this:
"Egyptian history and the biblical record: a perfect match?"
http://creation.com/egyptian-history-and-the-biblical-record-a-perfect-match
"Logistics of the Exodus - How did Moses organize the Israelites to cross the Red Sea?"
http://creation.com/exodus-logistics

So according to some Christians there is some evidence. BTW a pastor I talked to about this wanted me to just think about the evidence that Jesus existed - he didn't think problems I had with the Old Testament were very relevant.
 

Keith&Co.

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So according to some Christians
at 'creation.com'
there is some evidence.
But the question is how many archaologists say there's evidence, right?
And archaeologists tend to find that Egypt didn't have a big slave population. So the Genesis account is not 'perfectly' matched by historical finds.

If you're going to depend on argument-by-authority, maybe you should work harder to figure out who's really an authority? Not just someone who agrees with the answers you want to conclude?
 

Rhea

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They use that word "perfect match". I don't think it means what they think it means.

excre - do YOU believe them? It sounds like you find them convincing. You post it saying, here's some evidence. Are you hoping we will help out to identify where they are fooling themselves and you, where their science is so bad that not is not science any longer? We can do that. What they have posted is not "evidence" in the generally accepted definition of the word "evidence". Their science is unreliable and cannot be used to confirm anything because they do not follow science rules that will produce RELIABLE conclusions that can be used without fear of complete collapse.

Are you hoping for a critique? We can point you to sites that show exactly how and where their conclusions are just seriously flawed wishful thinking.


Use this search term on google:
debunk creation.com

the work is already done for you - just read.
 

excreationist

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at 'creation.com'
there is some evidence.
But the question is how many archaologists say there's evidence, right?
And archaeologists tend to find that Egypt didn't have a big slave population.
Apparently it depends on which spot in history you're talking about. Here they're saying to look a few centuries later I think.

So the Genesis account is not 'perfectly' matched by historical finds.
Well their title did have a question mark after "perfect match".

If you're going to depend on argument-by-authority, maybe you should work harder to figure out who's really an authority? Not just someone who agrees with the answers you want to conclude?
I'm saying that there seems to be some kind of evidence for slavery in Egypt.
 

excreationist

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They use that word "perfect match". I don't think it means what they think it means.
They had a question mark after it.

excre - do YOU believe them?
Not really.

It sounds like you find them convincing. You post it saying, here's some evidence.
yeah. "some" evidence.

....Are you hoping for a critique? We can point you to sites that show exactly how and where their conclusions are just seriously flawed wishful thinking.
I'm aware that there would be counter-arguments.
 

Rhea

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I'm saying that there seems to be some kind of evidence for slavery in Egypt.

We already knew that. Lots of people were enslaved all over history. But that does nothing to verify anything religious, nor does it even TOUCH miracles. Indeed, the miracles listed in the bible are pretty easy to debunk, which kind of throws the whole thing into the "fiction" shelf.
 

excreationist

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So that undermines your example that "archeology shows is that most of the Bible is blatantly false"
No. It doesnt. There are still no trays of any exodus, king david or solomon. The legend of Moses is, myth.
And there are no trace of use of camels in that area at that time.
http://youtu.be/gftH0MKjvts?t=41m56s
This guy says that the David and Goliath story never happened but there existed David the politician...
I tend to find no satisfaction watching argument-by-youtube. Too much to wade through, usually.

So.
Why would we care what 'this guy says,' ExC?
Why do YOU care what this guy says?
Why, exactly, are you offering his opinion in response to claims that archaeology shows the Babble is blatantly false? Because he says something different?
Because he says something different and he's got evidence?
 

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I'm saying that there seems to be some kind of evidence for slavery in Egypt.
There's evidence that ancient Egypt existed and people lived there.

The book of Exodus says that Egypt existed and people lived there.

I've just found supporting evidence for the book of Exodus because the facts match up with something the book says.

Honestly, that's about what you sound like with most of these "arguments".
 

excreationist

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So that undermines your example that "archeology shows is that most of the Bible is blatantly false"
No. It doesnt. There are still no trays of any exodus, king david or solomon. The legend of Moses is, myth.
And there are no trace of use of camels in that area at that time.
http://youtu.be/gftH0MKjvts?t=41m56s
This guy says that the David and Goliath story never happened but there existed David the politician...
I tend to find no satisfaction watching argument-by-youtube. Too much to wade through, usually.

So.
Why would we care what 'this guy says,' ExC?
He doesn't think things in the Bible are necessarily historical (e.g. the story of David and Goliath) yet he thinks there is evidence that David was a politician.

Why do YOU care what this guy says?
Why, exactly, are you offering his opinion in response to claims that archaeology shows the Babble is blatantly false? Because he says something different?
Because he says something different and he's got evidence?
Yes he would have some evidence.

BTW that youtube video is a BBC documentary and the person behind it is very skeptical of the Bible's information about David's empire...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gftH0MKjvts&feature=youtu.be&t=53m33s
"I'm gonna stick my neck out here and say that I don't believe that Israel and Judah were ever united under a Davidic king at all."

Note how careful she is not to reach a very certain conclusion here.

BTW in the latter part of the documentary they talked about the overwhelming evidence for another king - Omri:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omri

He is mentioned in the Bible but apparently due to its pro-Judah bias they played down his achievements.
 
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