Tag: Atheism

Would a God Have Sympathy?

Posted by – May 20, 2010

The question is of course hypothetical but it brings up the idea that if a god or gods exist would they have any sympathy for us?

If I were to create something such as a small program that outputs ‘ow’ whenever it gets pinged would I feel bad for it? Probably not because what the program experiences is so far removed from what I conceive of as pain that I wouldn’t really care, it’s just a small program after all and it’s just doing what I created it to do.

Gods would be just as advanced or infinitely more so, thus the gap would be even wider.

For a better example imagine you have a rodent or insect problem. Many people would use poison to kill the pests, knowing that this death may not be painless nor instant. When in fact many people think this would be torture to submit people to the same thing if they were to be executed by the state.  So even within our own genetic family tree we see a lack of sympathy for fellow creatures on which we share DNA with.

So if we cannot even take pity on our fellow creatures how could someone/something that is so infinitely more disconnected care about our suffering or worries. Especially those who think their prayers for a new car or their sports team to win are important enough to warrant a gods attention.

It’s Highly Improbable You Should Be Alive!

Posted by – December 3, 2008

I’ve had many discussions with theists who’s biggest argument for the existence of a deity (not only a deity, but their chosen and very specific deity) is that the universe as we know it is incredibly improbable.  If it took just one billionth of a second more for gravity to be created during the big bang, the universe would be a VERY different place.  This is entirely correct, the variables involved in the creation of the universe are of  (although this could change, ) which brings to mind Chaos Theory which is in fact completely relevant.

Anyway, getting back on track, I’d like you to imagine just how improbable it is that YOU, just YOU are alive on this planet right now.  Every single one of your ancestors was able to escape any predator, whether it be lion, tiger, bear or even dinosaur (we evolved after all)!  They then proceeded to work all their lives to attain food, and procure mates, both as animals till they developed into early humans, then modern, through the stone age, bronze age, iron, dark, every portion in human history.  All along the way living lives, both happy, probably some horribly depressing, but either way successful enough to pass on their genes.  This goes for both sides of your family, without the other who knows if you would exist.

The amount of variables involved in just the creation of you, one individual person is pretty much unimaginable.  If even one of your ancestors died prematurely, or decided upon a different career, or stepped off a curve at the wrong time, you wouldn’t exist.

However the fact that you exist, doesn’t mean that it’s a divine miracle.  It’s simply the fact that if it happened any other way, you wouldn’t be here to complain or even think about it.  Think of all the people who ARE NOT here because their ancestors failed.  I’d imagine the number to be MUCH larger than those who are here.

Just something I’ve been thinking about lately.

Using Your Real Name Online

Posted by – November 20, 2008

I’ve been using handles for years, the most prominent being DarkkInferno, which as morphed to “Darkk Inferno” to just plain “Inferno” as of late.  I decided upon this username for many reasons, shortly after I took my first year or so on the Internet.  Up till then I used many other handles while I freqented the ANSI BBS community around at the time.

How one could imagine me...

How one could imagine me... although I'd advise against it.

Handles were sort of an old school thing, everyone had one.  It was to ensure privacy and security (through obscurity mind you) of your online activities.  However today, handles are seen as a bit strange, and perhaps childish or at worst only used by cyber criminals and online child predators.  It’s a sad state of affairs, especially when harvesting people’s information and stealing their identities is such an epidemic right now.

However, over the years I have carried on an argument with myself on whether I’d prefer using my realname online, or stay with a handle.   I have tried it both ways, but inevitable waivered back to using a handle.  I think this is mostly because I’m still young and my opinions seem to change quite frequently, and unfortunately some opinions of mine (especially my open atheism) seems to cause some knee-jerk reactions.  The things I may say on this blog, or in forum communities, may translate into a company choosing not to hire me as the interviewer who Googled me decided that I’m a heretic, or not a good person because of my lack of faith.  So for the last few years I’ve been happy with the fact of using a username, and keeping my name relatively free from the Internet.

Things have changed as of a few months ago though, as it turns out I have some relative who has the same name as I do, the only difference (as far as I can tell, is our middle name).  This is most unfortunate because it’s a rather uncommon name, which is why when I EgoSurf, it comes up with his results.  It’s not too bad, but he seems to be running a personal servant business, where he takes out people’s trash and cleans dishes or something.  Not exactly something I’d want to show up on a google search for myself.  So I’ve been tempted to rebrand all my sites, domains etc to using my full real name to prevent such problems, and infact make my results much more relavant.

I’ve even tried emailing my name twin about this problem, or even if he minds the fact that I do rebrand and storm Google (perhaps we could have agreed on both using aliases or different spellings of the name online) however I have received no replies to any correspondence, and I’m not even sure what branch of the family he hails from in order to track him down this way (my Dad’s family is socially distant to say the least).

It’s an interetsing problem I’ve been thinking over, I’m not sure of the right course.  Although I’m thinking I’d rather not get a job because of my belief and openness than I would be to not get the job because of someone else using my name.  Besides it may be a good thing, as the company that would choose not to hire me because of my openmindedness and ability to use science and reason to make an educated decision, wouldn’t be a company I’d probably want to stay at very long anyway.

Update: Bible Study

Posted by – August 5, 2008

Sorry for the lack of updates and posts, been busy.  Should hopefully be on track from here on out.  Not that anyone reads this crap anyway.

The bible study has sort of fallen off the wagon the last few weeks, which has probably lapsed into months.  The original fellow who I’ve been studying with (Ashton) had said he was moving to Swift Current, SK to help out a Great Hall (their name for churches) out there.  It at first seemed fabricated as it seemed odd, and the previous week I had argued with someone he brought with him (an older guy named Al) about evolution, which I won’t get into right now.  However I don’t totally feel that this was the reason, so will take his word for it, as I have no real reason to doubt him (although I feel trust must be earned, you don’t start at zero).

So, instead of Ashton I’m going to be studying with a guy named John who is probably in his late 30’s and was a Roman Catholic for X amount of years before converting (who can blame him, the Catholic Church is horrid).  However, for the first few weeks of this transition, John simply didn’t show up.  I had thought maybe I scared them away, and this was their way of shying away politely.  This was not the case however as John finally showed up last week.

At the time however we were in the process of having our windows replaced.  This turned out horribly I might add, with severe damage to my desk, but that story and images will appear later.  I had given John my number and he called me the following week to see if I was free, we were again still in the process of getting everything cleaned up, and this past Monday he would have came, but there was a holiday.  I’m hoping he’ll call and come over this following Monday to continue our lesson.

Many people think it’s severely strange for me to want to take this free home bible study, and I don’t blame them.  However, the bible and religiosity is a very interesting subject for me.  It encompasses our fears and hopes and what we want from life and society, smashes it together into a very inconsistent blob of thoughts and ideas, that everyone acts and truly believes is cohesive and good.  It’s a phenomenon that has touched everyone, whether directly or indirectly and will probably continue for generations to come.

The bible study with others is a lot easier to cope with than alone, mostly because I interpret things VERY different than believers.  For Example:

(Isaiah 45:7, KJV) – “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.”

I’ll read this passage, and to me it speaks volumes about there being no Satan, Devil,Evil Spirit, whatever you’d like to call it as God creates all things, Good and Evil.  Which reflects back to the serpent in the Garden of Eden.  God created the serpent, and with his infinite wisdom knew what the serpent would do.  God is directly responsible for all the horrors on Earth.

However, when I state this, apparently I have it all wrong.  They will then state that in many other verses it states that “God is love” 1 John 4:8, KJV) and that God is “not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness” (Psalm 5:4, KJV) among many others.  What irks me about this however, is that the verse that states he creates evil is supposedly from God Himself, while the others are people talking about God.

So this is the reason I prefer the bible study, it’s simply because I can’t get this whole doublethink thing, and I really want to be able to understand what they understand, to develop better reasoning (if even possible) for why they do and say the things they do.  Just trying not to lose faith in humanity.

On a semi-related note, I may start reading the bible cover to cover and blog about it in another ‘segment’ of this blog.  Properly tagged so people (or more importantly I) can filter them in or out as they please.

Atheist Group

Posted by – May 15, 2008

I’m a bit troubled with the lack of an atheist or freethinkers group in Regina, Saskatchewan. If there is one, I certainly cannot find any mention or advertisement for one online or through the local papers. Although we don’t really ahve a huge bible thumping community here either, it’d be nice to find like-minded individuals to discuss various topics with. So anyone who is interested in starting one, feel free to get in touch with me in the comments or email me.

Also, I’ve always thought that Freedom-Uplink was always somewhat of a freethinkers group, I think I’d like to play that up a lot more. THis is something I’ll probably ponder over the next few days. I think the major problem is the members are so fleeting when anything resembling work arises, which leads to a lot of inactivity.

The reason I bring this up however, is due to the brochure I was given today by the Jehovah’s Witness’ I’ve been doing the bible study with. It’s about creationism. That may be enough for the majority of you to know what I’m getting at. For the rest of you, my main problem with this writing I was given, is that it’s an insult to my intelligence (well, if it wasn’t given to me under such good intentions). The lack of science, the flawed arguments, the blatant lies and above all the lack of real research.

I might ask to see if I can copy and share the brochure so I can show you guys just how crazy it is.

That’s all I have for now.

Bible Study

Posted by – April 24, 2008

Yes, it’s no typo or lapse of insanity (I’ve always been insane) I’ve started taking a very awkward kind of bible study with some Jehovah’s witness missionaries.  They arrived at my door a few weeks ago and I invited them in, discussing a litle about “God’s Plan” for the world once the evil people are gone, and they asked if they would be able to come back, and of course I obliged them with several visits.  However I think these meetings will be coming to an end shortly.

The best way to describe myself is an Agnostic Atheist Theravadin Buddhist which to some may seem contradictory but I assure you it is not.  I don’t have any issues about learning about the bible in a literary sense, and I actually quite enjoy listening to peoples interpretations and in some cases spin on the dogma.  I am getting quite tired of not having my questions answered however, and this is why I may end communication all together.

I’ve learned exactly (according to JW’s interpretation) how God is going to take back the Earth, why He would allow such pain and suffering to go on under His watchful eye and even how one could be saved from his wrath.  I’ve learned that the bible does not advocate voting, I’ve been informed by references of scripture that to celebrate Christmas is blasphemous (Which I knew before, but didn’t think it was so prevalent, how else can most Christians miss it?).  The problem is that with each topic that is uncovered I have about 2-3 questions that anyone who shows up cannot answer, and I’m not looking to argue or even asking the pesky questions even apologists have issues defending.  I’m asking honest well-natured questions like “Why would God create a tree of knowledge that nobody can eat from?” or “Why would God create Satan if he knew he would deceive him?  In fact wouldn’t that mean God created Satan for the purpose of going against His will?”

I understand these questions are not simple (I picked some of the hardest of the bunch to post here about), but they said that they’ll have to look into them and then get back to me, and then we’d begin reading again
.  So I feel I’m being lied to when the answers never come.  I assume this means the answers are not in the bible, but I’m surprised I don’t get a cop-out answer such as ‘God works in mysterious ways’ which I’m not sure whether I should be grateful for or not.

It makes me wonder how anyone could fall for believing in such a fairytale if such obvious questions jump out even in such a rigorous stream-lined way of studying.  I too though, feel a strange pull towards believing.  Much the same way as it is to procrastinate and not doing a research paper that is due a few weeks from now.  Taking the easy way out, the simple answer; “God did it.”.  It would be extremely easy and even comforting to believe in the story, and the way it’s been backed up with the Christian communities it’s one heck of a story, with a very happy ending.  And the best part?  You don’t really have to do anything, just believe.

I think in a strange sort of way this is what I was looking for, the answer on how one can fall for such a thing as Christianity.  I now see how easy of a trap it would be for those in a tough situation, whether it be a loss of a loved one, a horrible addiction (drugs, alcohol, gambling) where they lose it all.  The pull would be great enough to suck you in, and the way it’s structured it’s near-impossible to get out and see reason, logic and truth.

I have a lot more to say on the topic, but it’s 11:15 and I need to get up in the morning.  I have not proof-read this post so it may be riddled with errors as well, but seeing as how I don’t ever post (as everything is awaiting editing) I may just start posting everything raw, and touching it up when and if I get time.  Expect updates, and a detailed breakdown of one of if not the biggest flaws  see with Christianity, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who sees it, but I’ve NEVER heard it discussed before.

Review: Atheist Experience

Posted by – March 28, 2008

The Atheist Experience is a live weekly call-in public access television show broadcasting from Austin, TX that has been taking up a lot of my time as of late. Mind you since you only really need the audio, you can turn it on and go about your business while still fully enjoying the program.

While the show is geared towards explaining the atheist stance to theists, a lot can still be learned and entertainment is to be had as a hoard of religious and non-religious callers alike call in to explain their stance on the whole “debate”. Week after week, all the callers failing to provide any proof or substance to the reasoning behind their blind faith.

The show generally begins with a brief overview of material of the day’s topic from a variety of co-hosts. Then the phone lines are opened for rebuttals or just general chit-chat and usually hilarity of some sort will ensue. However don’t be fooled, this show isn’t completely about entertainment but for education for those who don’t understand the atheist stance (Simply: Atheists don’t BELIEVE in God). It’s also a great tool for atheists who wish to learn more about holding ones ground when debating with a theist (as if it wasn’t easy enough already).

Although the circular reasoning and the never ending barrage of the same questions over and over can become tiring, it’s all made up for by the people who call in to honestly ask why is it that we don’t all die when the sun goes down, and the fact that we don’t is adequate proof to justify the existence of a God. Another gem from the same caller is why we don’t get electrocuted when we take a shower if in fact our body creates energy from the food matter we eat, as he believed we were powered by God.

I’ve decided to include a YouTube clip of just one caller who seems to believe that it takes just as much faith if not more to not believe in God, than it does to not believe. We’ll see what happens, I might also note that the YouTube Comments are quite entertaining as well.

All in all it’s a great show, and after just a few episodes I’m sure you’ll be just as hooked.

Website: http://www.atheist-experience.com/

Blog: http://atheistexperience.blogspot.com/

Edit:

A lot of people viewing this post ahve been looking for the clip of the caller who tried to argue why we don’t all die when the sun goes down, and also brought up why we don’t get electrocuted in the shower because our bodies store energy in them: