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Intellectual Honesty - Atheists vs Christians


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#1 Jeppo

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 02:51 PM

It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists (like O'Neill), as there are intellectually honest Christian scholars. If I were an atheist, I'd be very embarrassed by that.


I like how you tacked 'scholars' on the end of that sentence! Not the kind of thing that strikes embarrassment to my cold atheist heart to be honest. It doesn't sound quite so convincing when you compare like with like, but let's try it:

"It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christians". :gagged:

#2 Jeppo

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 03:06 PM



The funniest thing about the Mythicist position is that it relies on intellectual dishonesty and poor quality scholarship; two things atheists will never tolerate from theists. Mythers are the sort of people who'll rage against the concept of miracles for hours, then turn around and quote D. M. Murdock at you without a hint of irony.

O'Neill knows this, and reminds them of it frequently. He's an absolute gem.


"Vast swathes of the gospels can be shown to be utterly false, but this does nothing to show that there wasn't a historical Jewish preacher as the ultimate point of origin for the later stories."

An absolute gem indeed ;)


Intellectually honest theists and atheists have far more in common than they realise, even if they disagree on the fundamental issue. I'm far more comfortable with an atheist such as O'Neill than theists such as Ken Ham or JP Holding, if only because they place a premium on being honest with the evidence.


I have to agree. It is possible to derive different conclusions from the same evidence as long as the evidence is being respected & treated with honesty. I'm constantly baffled by atheists who chuck the whole Bible away as though it couldn't possibly be of any use to historians.

One thing I'd like to point out is that while I'd describe my position as atheist (largely for the sake of convenience) I certainly wouldn't put myself in the Dawkins, Myers, Hitchens camp etc. While I sometimes find their views entertaining, these guys go beyond run of the mill atheism & are really better described as anti-theists. The distinction is worth noting.

#3 Mercia2

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 03:36 PM

"It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christians".


It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists/Muslims/pagans/ as there are intellectually honest [Christians who actually study and research].

In any case you are all to quick to assume apparent Biblical error is not, for some reason intended. Everything in life is an intentional contradiction.
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” = "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" = "Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who maketh His angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire" Psalms (104:1) = "They saw what seemed to be flames of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them." Acts 2 - the secret is over, your ministering angel you need to be saved is the Holy Spirit.

Who Is the Holy Spirit?
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/20950-holy-spirit-mercia/

Mark Of The Beast - his Name is the charachter/image of the medievil popes (now modern man)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/4997-mark-of-the-beast/page__pid__439951__st__120#entry439951

Historicists - Dual Fulfillment (seven thunders = more literal warning)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/14248-historicists-revelation-has-a-dual-fulfillment/

#4 Mercia2

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 03:36 PM

ditto

Edited by Mercia2, 30 May 2011 - 03:37 PM.

"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” = "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" = "Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who maketh His angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire" Psalms (104:1) = "They saw what seemed to be flames of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them." Acts 2 - the secret is over, your ministering angel you need to be saved is the Holy Spirit.

Who Is the Holy Spirit?
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/20950-holy-spirit-mercia/

Mark Of The Beast - his Name is the charachter/image of the medievil popes (now modern man)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/4997-mark-of-the-beast/page__pid__439951__st__120#entry439951

Historicists - Dual Fulfillment (seven thunders = more literal warning)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/14248-historicists-revelation-has-a-dual-fulfillment/

#5 Mercia2

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 03:42 PM

I have to agree. It is possible to derive different conclusions from the same evidence as long as the evidence is being respected & treated with honesty.

Subjective, by whose standard, occams razor?

One thing I'd like to point out is that while I'd describe my position as atheist (largely for the sake of convenience)


You are not atheist, you are agnostic leaning toward atheism which is the default position, atheism is extreme and anyone claiming to be outright atheist should be ignored.
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” = "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" = "Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who maketh His angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire" Psalms (104:1) = "They saw what seemed to be flames of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them." Acts 2 - the secret is over, your ministering angel you need to be saved is the Holy Spirit.

Who Is the Holy Spirit?
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/20950-holy-spirit-mercia/

Mark Of The Beast - his Name is the charachter/image of the medievil popes (now modern man)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/4997-mark-of-the-beast/page__pid__439951__st__120#entry439951

Historicists - Dual Fulfillment (seven thunders = more literal warning)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/14248-historicists-revelation-has-a-dual-fulfillment/

#6 Chris

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 03:50 PM

...atheism is extreme and anyone claiming to be outright atheist should be ignored.


What a ridiculous thing to say. :rolleyes:

#7 Mercia2

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 04:19 PM

What a ridiculous thing to say


Listening to those making guesses they cannot hope to substantiate is a ridiculous thing to say?
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” = "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" = "Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who maketh His angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire" Psalms (104:1) = "They saw what seemed to be flames of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them." Acts 2 - the secret is over, your ministering angel you need to be saved is the Holy Spirit.

Who Is the Holy Spirit?
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/20950-holy-spirit-mercia/

Mark Of The Beast - his Name is the charachter/image of the medievil popes (now modern man)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/4997-mark-of-the-beast/page__pid__439951__st__120#entry439951

Historicists - Dual Fulfillment (seven thunders = more literal warning)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/14248-historicists-revelation-has-a-dual-fulfillment/

#8 Chris

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 04:29 PM

Listening to those making guesses they cannot hope to substantiate is a ridiculous thing to say?


They could say as much about Christians.. especially ones who make claims of elaborate visions. A little more leniency and courtesy are in order.

#9 Jeppo

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 04:34 PM

You are not atheist, you are agnostic leaning toward atheism which is the default position, atheism is extreme and anyone claiming to be outright atheist should be ignored.


Ahhh....I get it. This is one of those 'intentional paradoxes' isn't it? You actually want people to pay close attention to what I say! ;)

#10 Mercia2

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 05:34 PM

They could say as much about Christians.. especially ones who make claims of elaborate visions. A little more leniency and courtesy are in order.

No they could not say that about Christians if they have not done what the Bible tells you to do and "ask" for the Holy Spirit (read Luke 11:13) in which personal proof is given on the level of microcosm, as to not affect free will. Watch and learn...

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Furthermore, you are not in a position either to make any absolutist statement unless you have done it (Luke 11:13). For your comparison with Christians to be valid, you would have to at least make me aware of some secret knowlege or rite in which absolute proof on a personal level was manifest that their is no God, and no such parallel exists. There is no equivalent atheistic spiritual experience or even a eureka moment so no parallel as you claim exists and you cannot judge on your own experience unless you have done all the Bible tells you to do (Luke:13).
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” = "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" = "Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who maketh His angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire" Psalms (104:1) = "They saw what seemed to be flames of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them." Acts 2 - the secret is over, your ministering angel you need to be saved is the Holy Spirit.

Who Is the Holy Spirit?
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/20950-holy-spirit-mercia/

Mark Of The Beast - his Name is the charachter/image of the medievil popes (now modern man)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/4997-mark-of-the-beast/page__pid__439951__st__120#entry439951

Historicists - Dual Fulfillment (seven thunders = more literal warning)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/14248-historicists-revelation-has-a-dual-fulfillment/

#11 Mercia2

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 05:38 PM

hhh....I get it. This is one of those 'intentional paradoxes' isn't it?


If you read the Bible closely you would know 'intentional paradoxes' are used almost as standard, "you must be born again" is an intentional paradox to force a spiritual meaning. All the contradictions are INTENTIONAL and always in the literal sense and the Bible is full of them.
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” = "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" = "Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who maketh His angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire" Psalms (104:1) = "They saw what seemed to be flames of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them." Acts 2 - the secret is over, your ministering angel you need to be saved is the Holy Spirit.

Who Is the Holy Spirit?
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/20950-holy-spirit-mercia/

Mark Of The Beast - his Name is the charachter/image of the medievil popes (now modern man)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/4997-mark-of-the-beast/page__pid__439951__st__120#entry439951

Historicists - Dual Fulfillment (seven thunders = more literal warning)
http://www.btdf.org/forums/topic/14248-historicists-revelation-has-a-dual-fulfillment/

#12 Fortigurn

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 06:39 PM

I am not worried about the atheist Jonno. I am simply wondering why we're not batting an eyelid when someone suggests it's all false. That's all. Sorry for asking the question. Just ignore.


I already explained why, twice. Now you're contradicting yourself. Either you're 'not worried about the atheist', or you're batting an eyelid at him saying that vast swathes of the gospels can be proved false. Which is it?

I like how you tacked 'scholars' on the end of that sentence!


Oh it wasn't my intention to make the differentiation you're implying (there are many intellectually honest Christian scholars, but not many intellectually honest Christians). My point was that there aren't even as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christian scholars. That should embarrass any intellectually honest atheist.

I'm happy making both of the following statements:

* It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christians
* It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheist scholars as there are intellectually honest Christian scholars

You could probably count the number of intellectually honest atheist scholars on one hand.

Edited by Fortigurn, 30 May 2011 - 06:43 PM.


#13 Chris

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 06:40 PM

No they could not say that about Christians if they have not done what the Bible tells you to do and "ask" for the Holy Spirit (read Luke 11:13) in which personal proof is given on the level of microcosm, as to not affect free will. Watch and learn...

My link

My link

Furthermore, you are not in a position either to make any absolutist statement unless you have done it (Luke 11:13). For your comparison with Christians to be valid, you would have to at least make me aware of some secret knowlege or rite in which absolute proof on a personal level was manifest that their is no God, and no such parallel exists. There is no equivalent atheistic spiritual experience or even a eureka moment so no parallel as you claim exists and you cannot judge on your own experience unless you have done all the Bible tells you to do (Luke:13).


You're proving my point.

#14 Jeppo

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 11:35 PM

I'm happy making both of the following statements:

* It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christians.


How you can make a statement like that with a straight face baffles me. It's not even verifiable. If I'd said something like that I'd get slapped down faster than you can say 'creation museum'.

* It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheist scholars as there are intellectually honest Christian scholars

You could probably count the number of intellectually honest atheist scholars on one hand.


One hand? Ha ha...atheism makes scholars intellectually dishonest, but Christianity makes scholars treat the source material with greater impartiality. There's only one thing for it - Universities should be sacking these pesky atheists & giving their jobs to good honest Christian scholars!

#15 Fortigurn

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 11:54 PM

How you can make a statement like that with a straight face baffles me.


Been online much? Read many atheist books on the subject? :book:

It's not even verifiable.


Oh I think it is. There are even atheists complaining about the anti-intellectualism which plagues public atheism. Try reading 'The secular Bible: why nonbelievers must take religion seriously' by atheist scholar Jacques Berlinerblau. He's French, so he's coming from a lengthy tradition of highly intellectual atheism, unlike the intellectually impotent version which dominates the US and which is expressed commonly in the UK.

If I'd said something like that I'd get slapped down faster than you can say 'creation museum'.


If you said what I said, you wouldn't. If you said something which wasn't true, you would.

One hand?


Make a longer list, by all means.

Ha ha...atheism makes scholars intellectually dishonest, but Christianity makes scholars treat the source material with greater impartiality.


I didn't say that.

Edited by Fortigurn, 30 May 2011 - 11:54 PM.


#16 Jeppo

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 12:51 AM

Been online much? Read many atheist books on the subject? :book:


So going online & reading 'atheist books' leads you to the 'verifiable' conclusion that there are more intellectually honest Christians than atheists?

Sorry, I didn't realise you'd gone to so much trouble. :shades:

#17 Fortigurn

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 01:24 AM

So going online & reading 'atheist books' leads you to the 'verifiable' conclusion that there are more intellectually honest Christians than atheists?


Correct. I've already given you one of my sources; you can check it for yourself.

Sorry, I didn't realise you'd gone to so much trouble. :shades:


Well now you know. :D

#18 Juliashmoolia

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 01:30 AM


I am not worried about the atheist Jonno. I am simply wondering why we're not batting an eyelid when someone suggests it's all false. That's all. Sorry for asking the question. Just ignore.


I already explained why, twice. Now you're contradicting yourself. Either you're 'not worried about the atheist', or you're batting an eyelid at him saying that vast swathes of the gospels can be proved false. Which is it?

I like how you tacked 'scholars' on the end of that sentence!


Oh it wasn't my intention to make the differentiation you're implying (there are many intellectually honest Christian scholars, but not many intellectually honest Christians). My point was that there aren't even as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christian scholars. That should embarrass any intellectually honest atheist.

I'm happy making both of the following statements:

* It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheists as there are intellectually honest Christians
* It's just a shame that there aren't as many intellectually honest atheist scholars as there are intellectually honest Christian scholars

You could probably count the number of intellectually honest atheist scholars on one hand.


Sheesh, talk about double standards. Isn’t it against the rules to make such sweeping claims without providing some supporting evidence?

How do you know there aren’t as many?

Whilst we’re on the subject, I wonder if people here think it’s acceptable to slap such an ugly label on someone, if they don’t realise they are being intellectually dishonest? I think in this forum, where grace and kindness should be foremost in peoples minds, its only fair to call someone that, only after their error has been brought to their attention and they refuse acknowledge it or persist in using it in their line of reasoning.

For example, in a previous thread, certain people were very eager in calling me (amongst other things) intellectually dishonest, when in reality my only error was that I failed to word my views in the correct way. I proceeded to clarify and add several qualifications, but the ugly accusation had already been made and there was no turning back. Its not in the spirit of Christ and even though I don’t believe in Christ, the ones that wave around the phrase do, and they should remember that people are watching and will be very quick to notice those who don’t practice what they preach.
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#19 Fortigurn

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 01:56 AM

Sheesh, talk about double standards. Isn’t it against the rules to make such sweeping claims without providing some supporting evidence?

How do you know there aren’t as many?


See my subsequent posts. :book:

Whilst we’re on the subject, I wonder if people here think it’s acceptable to slap such an ugly label on someone, if they don’t realise they are being intellectually dishonest? I think in this forum, where grace and kindness should be foremost in peoples minds, its only fair to call someone that, only after their error has been brought to their attention and they refuse acknowledge it or persist in using it in their line of reasoning.


Then you're wrong. when someone is being intellectually honest, they're being intellectually dishonest; it doesn't matter if they realise it or not.

For example, in a previous thread, certain people were very eager in calling me (amongst other things) intellectually dishonest, when in reality my only error was that I failed to word my views in the correct way.


Oh really? Do please present evidence for your claims.

I proceeded to clarify and add several qualifications, but the ugly accusation had already been made and there was no turning back. Its not in the spirit of Christ and even though I don’t believe in Christ, the ones that wave around the phrase do, and they should remember that people are watching and will be very quick to notice those who don’t practice what they preach.


I believe we're pretty good at practicing what we preach here; when people are intellectually dishonest we call them on it, regardless of whether they're Christians or not. You have a well established track record of intellectual dishonesty, both here and on BDF, as well as a track record of making derisive, mocking, gratuitously offensive, and factually inaccurate posts. This is demonstrable.

#20 Evangelion

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 02:51 AM

If I'd said something like that I'd get slapped down faster than you can say 'creation museum'.


Not here you wouldn't. I'd be slightly disappointed, but I'd understand your rationale. Intellectual dishonesty is rife amongst lay Christians.

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Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

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