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Dimmesdale
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:24 pm  The Justification for Agnosticism in a Nutshell Reply with quote

Science does not "disprove God" - it isn't capable of that. What it can do is offer alternative explanations which render traditional religious narratives at best questionable.
Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 11: Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:07 pm
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That was Socrates crime... who may be the foundation of western thought, if not Homer, and as opposed to the God of the Bible

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 12: Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:37 pm
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Re: The Justification for Agnosticism in a Nutshell

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Dimmesdale wrote:

Science does not "disprove God" - it isn't capable of that.


Maybe you mean that science can't disprove all gods. Because some of them don't do anything, don't have any characteristics.

But what you wrote is that science can't disprove "God," singular, capitalized. So it looks like you're saying that the Abrahamic god may actually exist. But this god is shot thru with contradictions.

- It can be seen but it can't be seen.
- It is perfectly merciful but perfectly just.
- It can do anything, but it can't defeat iron chariots.
- It is all-knowing, but it can't find the kids in the garden.
- It are one god while they is three.
- It is omnipresent but uses pillars of fire to get around.

We know for a fact that that god doesn't exist.

If you don't think this is proven, then you probably don't think anything is proven.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 13: Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:37 pm
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Re: The Justification for Agnosticism in a Nutshell

Like this post (1): Difflugia
Dimmesdale wrote:

Science does not "disprove God" - it isn't capable of that.


Maybe you mean that science can't disprove all gods. Because some of them don't do anything, don't have any characteristics.

But what you wrote is that science can't disprove "God," singular, capitalized. So it looks like you're saying that the Abrahamic god may actually exist. But this god is shot thru with contradictions.

- It can be seen but it can't be seen.
- It is perfectly merciful but perfectly just.
- It can do anything, but it can't defeat iron chariots.
- It is all-knowing, but it can't find the kids in the garden.
- It are one god while they is three.
- It is omnipresent but uses pillars of fire to get around.

We know for a fact that that god doesn't exist.

If you don't think this is proven, then you probably don't think anything is proven.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 14: Mon Jan 13, 2020 3:18 pm
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That is just a bizarre response.... though why should I even question it? Rambling into nothing... eat the dust of my feet

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MPG Recipient Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 15: Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:55 am
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Re: The Justification for Agnosticism in a Nutshell

Like this post (1): benchwarmer
wiploc wrote:
Maybe you mean that science can't disprove all gods. Because some of them don't do anything, don't have any characteristics.

Spot on.

One way that I think about it is that I can imagine any number of things that can't be disproven, but any interactions with reality that such a thing has must be indistinguishable from the world as we find it. This is the god of many liberal Christian theologians. They know how the Bible came to be and that it's a human document. They know that some of the stories about Jesus contain demonstrably fictive elements and the other stories are unverifiable, often in principle. Any perks that their god offers believers only manifest after death and in a way that can't be distinguished by the living. Such a god works in mysterious ways and is describe by words like "ineffable." That god can't be disproven because there is no test such that "if God is real, then x, but if God is not real, then y."

That description, however, fits the modern proverbial invisible dragon or unicorn that doesn't eat or poop and lives in my garage. Or an omniscient, omnipotent, transcendant ham sandwich. One can be technically agnostic, but there's no reason to believe in such a thing in the first place. An unknowable god fits in this category, even though we've been conditioned to give that particular idea special deference.

The god of most Christians, though, is not that god. That god inspired an inerrant Bible, brought a man (that was either God or not, depending on one's view of the Trinity) back to life, and in some way answers prayer. We can test for that god. In fact, many Christians attempt to create such tests all the time, but then, often without consciously realizing it themselves, start making excuses for why their god fails them. They seem to know that the ephemeral god of the liberal theologian is unsatisfying as an answer to any question, let alone ones like salvation that they've, once again, been conditioned to treat as important. They also seem to know how quickly otherwise simple tests fail without special pleading. If an inerrant Bible were a thing, it would be an easy matter to show. There would be no contradictions, full stop. It wouldn't contradict itself and it wouldn't contradict anything we know about the universe.

Liberal theology and inerrancy apologetics are the two sides of the same coin. They are simply two different ways of explaining why particular tests look so much like no gods are involved. Fundamentalist apologists sneer at the Episcopalian that denies the virgin birth, but they themselves have to construe the meaning of "contradiction" so narrowly and cast the net of "possible" so widely that both become meaningless. It's a simple test, really. Anyone that can assert that Judas somehow died by both hanging and exploding guts, in a field that he both bought himself and didn't, and that was named for buried foreigners and the aforementioned gore has already gone the way of the liberal theologian. That kind of inerrancy can't be disproven by the new and twisted rules, but neither is it meaningful. That god is just another invisible unicorn.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 16: Tue Jan 14, 2020 5:31 am
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Re: The Justification for Agnosticism in a Nutshell

Like this post (1): benchwarmer
Dimmesdale wrote:

Science does not "disprove God" - it isn't capable of that. What it can do is offer alternative explanations which render traditional religious narratives at best questionable.


Agreed.

But as has already been mentioned in the thread. Some traditional religions have disproved their own God character by the contradictory nature that has been written into their clearly fictional texts.

For example, there is no need to even bring science into it when speaking about the Christian God. That God can easily be seen to be false just based on the Bible alone. The God is supposed to benevolent, intelligent, and trustworthy but the Biblical narrative describes a God that is just the opposite of all those traits.

So just as a matter of contradiction of character the Bible proves itself to be false, even if we allow for all the supernatural miracles it claims.

However, scientific knowledge also conflicts with the Biblical narrative as well. The Bible claims that it was the fall of mankind that brought death, disease, and thorns to grow on plants. But science tells us that these things were commonly found on planet earth long before any humans ever showed up. So in this sense, why science can't disprove the actual God, it does show that the Biblical narrative is false.

Same is true of the Great Flood. Science shows that there is no indication of any major DNA bottleneck in the evolution of humans from the earliest primates to modern man. If the bulk of humanity had been killed off by a global flood leaving only a handful of humans to survive it, that would have shown up as a major event in the DNA record of humans.

This is one case where "absence of evidence" does indeed equate to "evidence of absence".

It like someone telling you that your house has burned to the ground. So you rush home only to find your home standing there perfectly sound with no signs of any fire. This is a case where "absence of evidence" is "evidence of absence". In other words, you can know for certain at that point that your house did not burn down.

So science does prove that the Bible contains false stories. That doesn't prove that the God of the Bible can't exist. It only shows that the stories about the God are clearly not true.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 17: Tue Jan 14, 2020 8:03 pm
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Re: The Justification for Agnosticism in a Nutshell

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wiploc wrote:


If you don't think this is proven, then you probably don't think anything is proven.


Off the top of my head I could think of some excuses/rationalizations to save the Abrahamic God, so in that sense I don't think He is falsifiable necessarily, because it all depends on how you interpret the Bible and, as far as I see, there is no "right" standard for doing it one way as opposed to another. People just interpret for all kinds of reasons: rhetorical, logical, traditional, etc.

I'm not sure what is really proven. The thought has even crossed my mind that solipsism could be true, from a strictly logical point of view. I am convinced that logic is real in the form of mathematics and that science, even if it describes a dream world is still internally consistent. So, math and logic and among other things my own sense of existence are things I would say are definitely real.

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