Science and Religion incompatible?

https://defenseofaith.wordpress.com/2015/11/07/three-fatal-steps/

“Thus the first step that the current scientific method is asking you to take is to assume that the facts that you meet are brute, that is, uninterpreted facts. I say you are asked to assume the existence of brute facts. If you did not assume this you could not be neutral with respect to various interpretations given of the facts. If God exists there are no brute facts; if God exists our study of facts must be the effort to know them as God wants them to be known by us. We must then seek to think God’s thoughts after him. To assume that there are brute facts is therefore to assume that God does not exist.

The second step that the current scientific method is asking you to take is to accept the position that theoretically any hypothesis is as good as any other. Satan first assumed and asked Eve to assume that facts are brute facts. On the basis of this assumption he then asked Eve to accept his hypothesis as being no less relevant than God’s hypothesis. He said in effect that he did not ask Eve to be unfair to God; he wanted her to consider God’s hypothesis no less than his own, and his own no less than God’s. In a similar way the current scientific method wants us to grant the theoretical relevancy of any hypothesis.

The third step which the current scientific method is asking you to take is to test the truth of any hypothesis by experience. Here, too, the temptation is the same in principle as that which came to Eve. Let us again begin Satan’s argument from the start. First, he asks Eve in effect to assume that the fruit of the tree in question is a brute fact. He insinuates that to hold anything different would be to degrade the originality of the human mind. To take for granted that all is interpreted in advance is to make science live by authority and that is to kill science. Secondly, he asks her to place the two mutually exclusive interpretations on a par with one another. Satan argues in effect that the question of being has no significance for the question of interpretation. That God claims to be the “Creator-being” and that He also claims Satan to be a mere “creature-being” should not influence Eve in the least. Therefore, in the third place, Satan argues that Eve ought to test the truth of the two hypotheses by experience. Surely that is fair. We must test all our theories by the facts of experience, must we not? What other way have you, Eve, of testing between two hypotheses that are at variance with one another? You cannot go back to the authority of God’s Word. That would be to go back on your first step. It would be to set one hypothesis above another at the outset. To be consistent you must take all three steps if you take one.”

(Van Til, Van Til’s Collection of Articles From 1920-1939)

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Hell means Honesty

I have recently written a couple of posts about religious relics being put on display here in Chicago and so I have been musing about religion in general and Christianity in specific.

I also saw a very good presentation by Sam Harris (I adore Sam Harris.) in which one of his main points was that religion basically deals with death and consoling people when loved one’s die.

The main appeal of Christianity is its promise of everlasting life, which consoles Christians when they lose a loved family member or spouse or child. This in itself is just a delusion and should only harm those with the delusion, but that is only half of what is promised by Christianity. Christians believe that all people will live forever. That’s right; there is life after death and we all get one. Unfortunately, only a tiny number of folks, those who will be “saved,” get a nice afterlife. The vast majority of people on this planet including you and me will roast in Hell unfortunately, even those who were born and died before Jesus came along. Even those who were born and died before the Hebrew Bible was written, ca. 1 BCE. Even the batshit crazy creationists believe the earth is over 6000 years old, that means people were around for 4000 years before the Bible got written and 4000 years or so before Jesus made his promises. I expect we are talking many millions of people lived and died and then were sent to Hell on a technicality. Those fools were not saved as they didn’t accept Jesus in their hearts as their savior. You can almost smell the fat sizzling if it weren’t for the reek of sulfurous fumes.

“Christians believe that all people will live forever.
That’s right; there is life after death and we all get one.”

Christianity is not a nice religion. Studies show that the primary indicator of what religion a person espouses is the religion of their parents. That is we have little choice. All of those Christians are baptizing their kids before the kids can talk, let alone know what is happening.

Condemning 90+% of all people to eternal torment is terrorism. I have talked to a number of people who spent their childhoods in recurring fear because their grandparents or their friends were in the wrong religion and were going to roast in Hell. So, not only is this doctrine terrorism, it is child abuse.

Many people now say Christianity is nicer now and that as time goes on it becomes more gentle. If that is so, it is only because Christians are ignoring the Bible, which is considered by many to be the word of their God, so I can’t give much credit to people saying that a religion is much better now that they are ignoring its teachings.

I think everyone ought to be given a religious reset opportunity, kindo of a forced confirmation/opt out opportunity. It could be a sort of coming of age ceremony. We could get George Clooney to do the service. It would be short, George would merely ask : “Are you in or are you out?”

Author: Steven P. Ruis.

Comment: Yes, Christianity isn’t nice. It would very uplifting if Christians admitted this to themselves, so they wouldn’t be sucked into all sorts of passive-aggressive behavior like double-think.

I do not pretend to preach a nice religion, I simply state: hell is eternal, hell is eternal, hell is eternal…

John Zande

Hi oogenhand, hope you’re doing well.
”You presuppose that a god does not exist, and therefore you read all data through that lens and arrive at satisfying results.”
This is false. The sequence of events are 1) I, like everyone, was born a-theist 2) theism was taught to me and accepted as truth 3) personal investigation revealed theism to be false.
No religion is true, and I know this because no religion has emerged independently twice on the planet. Peel away the colourful ritualistic outer layers, bypass the oral traditions and the always cryptic books, navigate around the creative hermeneutics, over the various strains of inventive apologetics, philosophies and elaborate theodicies, and press on through the charismatic mind-sets to the core within and the impartial observer finds that there are but two ostensible, universal truths pervading all faith-based religious beliefs:
1) They all claim to be true.
2) Not one has ever emerged twice on the planet.
That is all there is. There is nothing lurking any deeper than these two truisms, and as the second maxim annihilates the first claim the observer swiftly determines that there is no need to even litigate the petitions forwarded by any single religion as it is already perfectly clear that any allusion to authenticity is entirely groundless.
If this were not the case, if any single religion were in fact true, we would have—indeed should have—already seen that religion emerge naturally and entirely unassisted wherever human beings were found, regardless of their isolation or epoch. Its deity (or deities) would wear a single hat, carry a single name and speak a single language audible to the deaf, coherent to infants, understood by the demented, and intelligible to the senile. Its dramas and narratives would be recognised and repeated by cloistered populations in every corner of the planet, and its edicts would have penetrated all tribal, domestic and international legal code mindless of earthly or socioeconomic borders. If any single religion were true a single and unchangeable objective moral writ would underwrite all human populations, dietary conventions would be unchaste by oceans, and norms of etiquette, civility and protocol would not deviate with geography or era.
No religion has however emerged twice anywhere on the planet, no single deity has been envisaged by two populations separated by time and geography, and not a solitary person in history has arrived independently at Mithraism, Christianity, Islam, Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism, Scientology or Judaism without it first being taught to them. Captain Cook did not find Aborigines swallowing back Christian communion wafers at Botany Bay, Columbus was not confronted by a wall of Arawak backsides pointed away from Mecca at sunrise on the beaches of Santa María de la Concepción, and Pedro Álvares Cabral did not uncover tribes of Aimoré Indians auditing their Thetans with Mark Super VII Quantum Electropsychometers.
That is a fixed, unarguable truth, and it is a point worth repeating. If any given mythology were even remotely accurate (the claim made by all) then that cult, its gods, its rituals, behavioural codes and canons should have emerged unsupervised at least twice on the planet. Its truth would in fact be demonstrable in this supernatural event.
”My own conversion wasn’t one of superstition, paranoia, or any other fear-based thought system.”
I’m sure that’s the case, but that is missing the point of the general thesis. As a species we have (from an evolutionary perspective) favoured quick associations. This has been beneficial, something inherently good for survival, but the residue of this has been a bias to false associations. That is to say, it’s easier for us to accept the false association. “Theism” is not revealed here, rather many, many steps further up the ladder.
”I would question that every thread of paranoia is built into our genetic code. How much if this is taught behavior? For instance, some people do jump at the possibility of a mouse. Had you not grown up in a culture afraid of rodents, would you have the same reaction?”
I don’t argue that it is. Fear is the grandparent: that urge to survive. Paranoia is a word, and as a word it often has negative connotations. I get that. If you substitute “paranoia” with, perhaps, “weariness,” then we might find more common ground.
And it’s not jumping at the sight of the mouse, rather the sound… the unknown. Superstitions are cultural. They are learned. The root, however, is paranoia.
And your claim that theism is unnatural is more in agreement with mine. If a Creator did create, then that Creator would be outside of nature, existing before it, and be unnatural.
One is not related to the other, and here “theism” is called unnatural because no single belief system has ever arrived independently (naturally) in two populations. What I would most certainly argue is natural is our penchant to find agency in nature. Many studies point to this being fact, and once again, this can be explained from an evolutionary perspective. In fact, it is the very explanation I use in the post. The grass moving is assumed (immediately) to be an agent: a lion. We are hardwired to find agency in nature. Doing so enhances our chances of survival. That is natural for us. Dressing all that up in theistic notions is, however, purely cultural.

Reincarnation Sucks

https://1eternitymatters.wordpress.com/2010/10/19/evaluating-different-religions-5-reasons-to-start-your-spiritual-search-with-christianity/

Since Christianity claims that there is one God and after we die we face one eternal judgment (Hebrews 9:27) you should consider it first, at least over atheism and any religion with either a concept of reincarnation or with no concept of judgment.  If atheism isn’t true, then nothing eternal matters.  If “second chance” religions like Hinduism and Buddhism are true then the worst case scenario is that you lose a little ground going into your next life.

But if Christianity is true and you don’t trust in Jesus and accept God’s free gift of salvation, then you spend an eternity paying for your sins.

Consider matters of eternity very carefully, because eternity matters.

Comment: As I always say, Hell is eternal, Hell is eternal, Hell is eternal…

Racial Hatred Destroys Home Of UK’s First Muslim Female Band

http://www.carbonated.tv/news/home-of-uks-first-female-muslim-band-the-ulfah-collective-destroyed-in-raciallymotivated-arson-attack

 

The Ulfah Collective, UK’s first female Muslim band, faced the brunt of racial hatred when the Ulfah Arts and Media Center was set ablaze.

The community center where the band started has been completely gutted in the attack, which was suspected to be racially motivated

They had been receiving anti-Islamic hate mail for some time now.

Ulfah Arts and Media spokeswoman Sarah Javid said “Over the last two months our CEO (Prashant Singh) has been receiving hate mail which has been anti-Islamic.”

“He also received a DVD which was full of race hate messages.

“Mr Singh has no idea why anyone would have a personal vendetta against him or the organization. But the fire has destroyed everything. It’s destroyed equipment, but also all of our projects, some we have been working on for over a year.”

Racial Hatred Destroys Home Of UK’s First Muslim Female Band

The Ulfah Collective comprises of Muslim women from Pakistan, Somalia, Bangladesh, some Arab countries and Jamaica – with ages ranging from 13 to 42. The core team of the band is five members but expands to 14 members for larger performances.

The varying backgrounds and cultures bring together different interpretations of Islam that are heard by women-only audiences. The group writes its own lyrics as well as vocal compositions and only uses a hand drum in their performances.

Their music is universal and apart from traditional Islamic songs, includes songs from the literature of other faiths such as the gospel.

Hate crimes against Muslims soared in the UK during 2013. Hundreds of anti-Muslim offenses were carried out across the country, especially after the murder of soldier Lee Rigby by two Islamic extremists in Woolwich, Southeast London, in May.

Britain’s biggest force, the Metropolitan police, recorded 500 Islamophobic crimes in 2013, up from 336 in 2012 and 318 in 2011.

The fact that the figure may actually be higher than reported is extremely disturbing – but it is a fact. Nearly half of the 43 forces in England and Wales had not revealed how many hate crimes targeted Muslims.

Some officials even admitted not always  recording the faith of the victim.

Comment: Stormfront also believes Muslims to be a race. As most Muslims aren’t clearly black, yellow or white, the kind of men that can enter mosques at will without having to wear beards, knitted skullcaps, shortened trousers etc. should be called swarthy. It is very likely that the perpetrators weren’t motivated solely by religious motives. Nevertheless, increasing the birthrate of white British people would require a shift to a sexual morality that stresses reproduction (almost tautologically), and thus a shift in the direction of Muslim morality. This is ironic and inevitable.

STDs and sensitivity

STDs are mainly found among the poor, because malnutrition weakens the immune system. Poor people in the USA are less likely to be circumcised, poor people in the EU are more likely to be circumcised (Hispanic v.s. Muslim immigrants). So STD statistics can be misleading.

Common sense tells us that both reduction of STDs and loss of sensation are likely if thin, moist, but highly enervated skin is removed. So both sides tweak science if they deny either.

Note: Many adherents of Dual Seedline Christian Identity also believe in ritual circumcision.

Cuius regio, eius religio?

The discussion on ritual circumcision makes one thing very clear. What are the boundaries of religious freedom? Do parents have the religious freedom to impose their religion on their children? If yes, do grandparents have the religious freedom to impose their religion on their children and grandchildren? Do the chiefs of clans and tribes have the religious freedom to impose their religion on their clansmen and tribesmen? Do kings have the religious freedom to impose their religion on their subjects? If so, the old adage “Cuius regio, eius religio” holds true. But, can we ask, doesn’t have God the right to impose the religion of His choice on His creatures? Do ordinary humans have the right to impose the religion of their choice on other people, is that part of their religious freedom?

On the other hand, if no, then children cannot be raised in any religion. This begs the question, is secularism a religion, is pluralism a religion, is religious freedom itself a religion?