Atheism: The source of all of humanity’s problems

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84 Responses to “Atheism: The source of all of humanity’s problems”
  1. jonolan says:

    Funny – but if atheism ever develops a “church” body – or body corporate – all those atrocities enter the realm of possibility.

  2. L. Ron Brown says:

    It’s true. Society needs to be extremely vigilant in insuring that those in power—regardless of who they are—maintain individual and societal well-being, autonomy and rights (and some of these considerations for some animals) as their only priority.

  3. Colin says:

    Pol Pot, Lenin, Stalin, Mao…

    They make Christianity look like Mr. Rogers.

  4. isaiah30v8 says:

    I made a video on a similar athiest topic:

  5. Megan Jonas says:

    Hello, My name is Megan Jonas, and I am an atheist. I feel grounded in my morals. I support homosexual rights, I recently stopped smoking – but I think it should be legal, I am kind to the general public – no matter how much they frustrate me, I hold the door for the elderly, I let vehicles pull infront of me when they need to leave the parkinglot, I use my turn signal, I am monogamous, I believe in education, I am a good person too.

  6. The difference is that Pol Pot, Lenin, Stalin and Mao didn’t torture, kill, and commit terrorist acts in the name of their God. When an atheist commits an atrocity, it’s not carried out in the name of “god doesn’t exist, take that suckers”. There is usually some other nonsensical cultural or ideological justification.

    Violence in the name of “God” has been a common occurrence in history and continues around the world today. You don’t have to look very far to find religious violence on large and small scales all around us. Christian politicians in the US and Canada have actively sought to discriminate against homosexuals on the basis that their actions were immoral. All kinds of violence in the middle east is perpetrated and justified on the basis of religious differences.

    Let’s make a fair comparison. On one hand, some despots and scumbags have been atheists, but did what they did for unrelated ideological reasons which are easily criticized by any intelligent person. On the other hand, religious beliefs have historically and are currently the justification for all kinds of discrimination, genocide, and a myriad of atrocities.

    What’s your point again Colin?

    • Che Guevara says:

      Not at all thisbusymonster. Enver Hoxha in Albania had an atheist dictatorship where he killed religious people in the name of atheism. Even if he didn’t exist, someone can always kill someone in the name of atheism. Every idea can cause murderous atrocities no matter how well constructed. Thats way I dislike this cartoon

  7. L. Ron Brown says:

    Colin: It is not atheism that led them to do what they did, though. Atheism is a simple lack of belief in a God. That’s it. It’s not a moral philosophy.

  8. Colin says:

    No, They didn’t kill close to 100 million people in the 20th century in the name of any god.

    They decided that there was no god and realized that they were therefore permitted to do anything they wanted…argumentum ad baculum…persuasion from the barrel of a gun. The guy in power sets the rules. (See Ron’s comment in response to jonolan, above)

    They were absolutely motivated by their atheist ideologies (only an historical revisionist would deny that), and yes, here we agree…their (atheist) ideological reasons are easily criticized by any intelligent person.

    How is this for an objective comparison…

    The Crusades, Inquisition, Salem etc, happened over a period of close to a thousand years and claimed the lives of about 100,000 people. Every life lost was one too many…but every perpetrator was acting in direct contradiction to the teachings of Jesus.

    The atheist regimes mentioned before…Pol Pot, Stalin, Lenin, Mao, in the space of 100 years killed 100 000 000 people. Every life lost was one too many…and every perpetrator was acting consistent with his atheist ideology. No God=No evil.

    So, atheist ideologies led to the deaths of 1000 times more people in a tenth of the time…

    I am glad that you folks don’t take your beliefs as seriously as those guys did.

    • Joshua says:

      Oh yeah, Colin. religious people are so peaceful compared to us evil atheists. the aztecs killed thousands of people. the damn christians burnt down libraries of other faiths. we are currently fighting people who blow themselves and others up for their god…it’s so stupid. we atheists don’t believe in god. it’s not that we don’t have consciences. we aren’t evil.

      religion is just stupid. it makes no sense. there is no evidence of it at all. if i told you that there invisible intangible smurfs running around, plotting our demise, would you believe it? i’d have just as much proof as the christians muslims and jews. but you wouldn’t believe it. know why? no proof. wanna know why religion is still around? fear. every religious person is afraid that if they don’t believe, they go to a terrible place, or something bad will happen. everyone has their doubts…the only thing that makes sure that they keep coming back to religion is that little “what if…?”. and if that’s not the case, then you’re just a moron.

  9. jonolan says:

    It is possible that Atheism, much like Communism, is not a good idea for society until such time as a large number of us become Nietzsche’s Supermen. Humanity may not be ethical enough as of yet to survive without a morality.

  10. isaiah30v8 says:

    L Ron Brown.

    If you don’t believe in God then you have to believe in something. Whatever you then decide to believe in becomes your religion. There is such a thing called “Social Science” which pretends to be able to determine moral philosophies.

    Maybe you should just watch the video I linked to above.

    • CupCake says:

      I disagree with you and your video.

      your a very stereotypical christian my friend.

      i think its funny how you say that the people who believe in the “pool of knowledge” are less intelligent than people who don’t.

      and by the way, I quite like swimming in my pool of knowledge, it’s comforting.

  11. isaiah30v8 says:

    Colin,

    Just a small edit:

    Pol Pot, Stalin, Lenin, Mao, Bush, in the space of 100 years killed 100 000 000 people.

    Thank you

  12. Dr. Jim says:

    Why blame the atrocities of Stalin, Hitler et. al. on atheism? Why not on paranoia, xenophobia, hyper-nationalism that approaches the kind of demands for loyalty that fundamentalist religion demands, industrialization and so forth? All of these things are factors too. Religious people can be paranoid, and religion can bolster hyper-nationalism.

    Could Hitler have achieved the numbers of murders he was guilty of if he had to rely on Crusade era levels of technology and communication in a world with significantly lower population?

    The idea of genocide is certainly imprinted pretty deeply in Christianity, it is all over the Old Testament and wholesale destruction of non-believers is an essential part of Christian apocalypticism. To disregard its influence on the Western mind is irresponsible.

    Why should it matter what the New Testament says Jesus taught? The same book also gives us ideas of eternal struggles with a demonized “enemy” that must be defeated. It provides a language and an imagery repeated in countless works of art (not to mention sermons) and political posturings.

  13. Interestingly enough, Pol Pot went to a Catholic school. No wonder he thought genocide was ok. Look where he learned about morality.

  14. L. Ron Brown says:

    Colin: Respectfully, you’re way off.

    “They decided that there was no god and realized that they were therefore permitted to do anything they wanted‚Ķargumentum ad baculum‚Ķpersuasion from the barrel of a gun. The guy in power sets the rules. (See Ron‚Äôs comment in response to jonolan, above)” [Colin, simply being able to do something does not serve as a motivation to do it. I am able to play basketball, but I don’t play because despite the ability to do so, I’m not motivated to. How does not believing in God motivate anything? All atheism is is a lack of belief in a God. That’s it. It’s not a moral philosophy, it’s not a lifestyle stance, it’s not anything other than a lack of a single type of belief. When was the last time that you were motivated to do something based on your lack of belief in UFOs? The only difference that atheism itself could have had on some of these leaders’ behaviours is the ability to carry out their motivations (which were not caused by atheism) without fear that a God would punish them for it. At most, their atheism would free them from one barrier to antisocial behaviours which were motivated by something else.]

    “So, atheist ideologies led to the deaths of 1000 times more people in a tenth of the time‚Ķ” [Keep in mind that technology and population density had everything to do with this difference.]

  15. L. Ron Brown says:

    Isaiah:
    By your application of the term “religion”, then, everyone has a religion. You’re calling any system of values and meaning a religion. I have no problem with admitting that I have moral values, approaches to living life, a set of ideas on issues like meaning, and so forth. We can give all of this a term. However, there is a big difference between all of this and theistic religions. I don’t tie my ideas on life and so on to some sort of objective standard for which the evidence is lacking. There are similarities between theistic and nontheistic life stances, but we can’t pretend that these stances are the same just because they are stances.

  16. Let’s see. Jesus is the same as God (that whole trinity nonsense, Father, Son, Holy Ghost) and God was all about the genocide, intolerance, and hate. Of course, when you point that out you are “taking the Bible out of context” (i.e. it’s inconvenient for me as a Christian, please don’t point that out).

    However, when the church goes old testament on people, they are “not following Jesus” and all their missteps are to be ignored or forgiven. This is a convenient argument, as it allows the religious nut to say, all bad acts are excluded from consideration, as they are not part of what I mean by my religion. Basically, It’s a complete cop-out.

    Christians either need to accept that their religion, in its roots, is violent, hateful, and intolerant. Either that, or they need to acknowledge that te bible is a collection of stories that are fun to talk about on Sunday in church, but have no real meaning other than being morality tales. You don’t get to ignore the parts of religious history that aren’t so bright and shiny. Religion=hate.

  17. L. Ron Brown says:

    TBM: It appears that you’re being a bit overly harsh toward religion. Just as the apologists for religion should accept that people have done antisocial things in the name of the religion, critics of religion should accept that people have done good in the name of religion, too. And plenty of it.

    The big thing is not being dogmatic. There are certainly good ideas in religious texts, just as their are hurtful ideas. If we are non-dogmatic, then we can take the good and leave out the bad, and acknowledge that the good ideas are good not because they are supposedly from God, but because they seem to be good ideas for the same reason that nonreligious ideas seem to be good ideas (e.g., the contribute to personal wellbeing, trust, compassion, prosociality, kind treatment of others, etc.).

    The biggest movement should really be a movement of anti-dogmatism, and reason and compassion. I think we should be binding together to promote reason, honesty and genuine compassion and respect for the rights, wellbeing, autonomy and freedom from suffering of each other. We should be opposing all forces that work against these things, whether the opposers are finding motivation, justification or roots for persuasion of others from religion or secular sources (e.g., secular philosophies/political systems, economics, etc.—i.e, false idols).

    Over the past few months I have come to think that it would be a good idea to look at God concepts in 100% completely metaphorical senses, completely stripped of any allusions to omniscient, omnipotent, omnibenevolent Creators and Judges. What would God be a metaphor for? Such things as the morally relevant commonalities among people (e.g., we all feel pain and happiness, we all want autonomy and for that autonomy to be respected, we wouldn’t want to be left in a ditch to die), how to live a good life, what is meaningful and important, the pursuit of wisdom, etc.

  18. Stoobs says:

    “If you don’t believe in god, you have to believe in something” is a patently false claim. If you believe in anything when there is no evidence to support your belief, you are wrong. The only sensible position is to follow the facts where they are available, and when there are no facts, shrug and remain undecided. People appear to have a terror of saying “I don’t know,” but in most situations it is the smartest thing you can say, because you don’t. Religion is the result of that terror.

    Your video is crap. It’s so tedious I couldn’t finish watching. You have employed the wrong medium for the content you wished to showcase. Try typing out your speech, so that people don’t have to listen to your hopelessly stilted, stumbling presentation.

    The only difference between christian murderers and atheist murderers is that when a christian murders thousands of people, other christians will rally round to support him, while when an atheist murders thousands of people, other atheists will condemn and revile him. Pol pot is not a hero to anyone, anywhere, while Hitler still has followers all over the southern US, all of whom are hardline christians who believe that he was doing god’s work. Christian murderers have apologists while atheist murderers don’t. No other difference.

  19. L. Ron Brown says:

    Stoobs:

    I don’t know that I agree with your differentiation between Christian murder apologists versus atheist murder apologists. I would imagine that there have been a decent number of atheists who’ve defended some violent atheist-led regimes. However, it’s not atheism that motivated the regimes or support for them. In the case of support for murderous religious regimes, I imagine that dogmatically-held intepretations of religions have served as a major part of the support for the violence; so in this point we’d see eye-to-eye.

  20. digitalartist says:

    Let’s not forget the crusades, especially the children’s crusade where the church sent childrn off to fight a war. And religion is better how?

  21. Ron,

    I’m not so sure of the good done in the name of religion. Usually, the good is done for the cause of spreading religion, and spreading religion is spreading ignorance, dogma, and hate. I had a friend whose family would go on missions to China. The premise was to appear charitable to the locals and draw them into attending church. If it was real charity, there would be no strings attached.

    Con men always offer you something that sounds good and come off as really decent people, then they cheat you blind. Same with religion. The problem with religions is that they are fundamentally based on ignorance, and dogma and they are self serving in that they want to promote their own ideologies over the competition.

    Have you ever seen a Taoist evangelist? Not really.

    Religions are self promoting systems that rely on fear, ignorance and dogma. I don’t think it’s an overstatement to say religion=hate.

  22. Stoobs says:

    Ron – You’re disagreeing with my phrasing of the claim rather than the content, I think. That is, I’m sure that there are some people who were atheists, who, for reasons other than being atheists, have apologized for evil. There are no mass movements by atheists qua atheist to defend evil. Conversely, christian leaders who do evil in the name of god are reflexively defended by other christians, simply because christian == good in their minds.

  23. Zennalathas says:

    Communism and Nazism were/are religions in their own right. Definitions of religion that most base their understanding of the term on are nearly always backwards configured from a pre-existing religion.

    A Christian defines religion by what Christianity is like, and so forth.

    It’s not an adequate definition, and does not encompass the broad field which religion resides in. Here’s a little more on what I had to say about this months ago:

    http://thedevilsharlot.blogspot.com/2007/10/best-definition-of-religion-yet.html
    http://thedevilsharlot.blogspot.com/2007/09/cult-of-personality-vsis-religion.html
    http://thedevilsharlot.blogspot.com/2007/10/religions-of-ideology-continued.html#comments

  24. mark Carlton says:

    Funny, you forgot to mention the Soviet Union, China, Cambodia, etc. countries dedicated to materialism, that managed harvested more of their own people in times of peace than have been killed in all of histories wars. And they did it in less than a century.

  25. jonolan says:

    Zennalathas,

    Following your logic Atheism is a religion – possibly with Dawkins as pope? There’s a difference between religion and ideology. Can you really picture “American extremists” crying “Fahim America! America Akbar America!” ???

  26. Zennalathas says:

    Atheism does not adhere to all four of the central tenants of the definition provided. There’s no central text and no infrastructure as would be required. No, atheism does not fit into the definition, but hey, good try.

    “American extremists”? America is its own ideology now, with its own doctrinal texts and dogmatic discourse…?

  27. Frank says:

    To Atheists: IF God is, then He would be (is) necessarily Omnipotent and Sovereign. He says we are unholy, sinful, depraved and deserving of death, which He can declare being Omnipotent and Sovereign. Death (and accompanying atrocities) is of satan, NOT God. God is life (eternal). That’s not so difficult once you humble yourself to the truth. But only the contrite heart will ever agree to that.

  28. blueollie says:

    Nice cartoon, though in my browser there was a literal “framing” problem. ūüôā

  29. Stoobs says:

    Frank – Your utter gibberish actually cost money to transmit around the world, consuming bandwidth that could otherwise have been spent trading Guitar Hero scores, or playing Counterstrike. And for what? To argue that only a self flagellating weirdo would choose christianity? I’m on board with that already.

  30. wolfshowl says:

    Basically, there are good and bad Christians. There are good and bad Atheists. But at least the Atheists don’t point to the sky afterwards and go “god made me do it.”

    Now, as to the “no god = no evil” comment….I don’t personally know any Atheists who think that way. Atheism is largely about taking personal responsibility for your actions and being a socially responsible person without needing the crutch of some imaginary person in the sky saying “do this or else I’ll throw you into a lake of fire where you will burn for eternity.” It’s about having compassion for people because you truly care about them, and not because you’re afraid of the consequences if you don’t.

  31. L. Ron Brown says:

    Frank: When are you going to humble yourself before the flying spaghetti monster or the books of greek mythology? No amount of humility will cause me to sacrifice intellectual honesty. And its quite the contradiction that the person claiming humility (you) is the one who claims to know the answers to the biggest questions of the universe, claims to knowledge that agnostic atheists like myself do not make.

    Mark Carlton: Here’ the thing with atrocities committed by atheists: How could they have been motivated by their atheism? Atheism is a simple lack of belief in God. That’s all it is. When was the last time that anyone was motivated to do something by their lack of belief in anything else? At the very most, atheism is not a motivating factor but a freeing factor in that one can commit heinous acts without fear of punishment from a God. But even if one didn’t have this fear, they could still fear punishment from other humans. And even if they had no fears of this sort, they still have to be motivated to do something. I have no fear of punishment for taking a course in art history at a local university, but I’m hardly motivated to do it.

    Atheism is not a moral philosophy. It makes no claims about what people should do. It is nothing more than a lack of belief in something (Gods).

  32. isaiah30v8 says:

    L.Ron Brown

    “I don‚Äôt tie my ideas on life and so on to some sort of objective standard for which the evidence is lacking. ”

    The value of the decisions you make through your own personal set of idea’s provides the evidence. This evidence CAN be measured.

    Christians now have to live in a world which is effected by decisions made by men like you. Men who think they know what to do. They think they can be “like God knowing good and evil”. Gen 3:5

    While enduring the results of your decisions Christians say a daily prayer; “let your Kingdom come, let your will be done”

    You say you are living a nontheistic life however, you are not. The God you believe in is yourself. Genisis 3:5 Therefore you do have a religon.

    If it were not for men like yourself I would have great difficulty understanding the bible and believing in my religion.

    You,……. are my evidence.

  33. L. Ron Brown says:

    “Christians now have to live in a world which is effected by decisions made by men like you. Men who think they know what to do. They think they can be ‚Äúlike God knowing good and evil‚ÄĚ. Gen 3:5” [Do you not see the hypocrisy here? YOU think that your book has all the answers!]

    I am your evidence? Well, now I think your case is even weaker than I thought it was before. If I am your evidence, then you’re even further into ridiculousness than before. How could I be evidence for the Bible? How could I be evidence that Jesus was born of a virgin? How could I be evidence that God created the world in 6 days?

    I don’t believe that I am a God. I do not think that I created all, that I know all, and that the decisions I make and beliefs that I hold are necessarily correct. I am fallible. If I thought of myself as a God, I would think of myself as being omniscient, omnipotent and infallible.

    There is positively no evidence for God that could not be interepreted in an infinite array of other similarly valid ways.

  34. Ron:

    isaiah30v8 is referring to the story of Eve eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge. The phrase he quotes is what the serpent tells Eve, that by eating the fruit she will become like god and know good and evil. Prior to that, I suppose they had lived blissfully ignorant in the Garden.

    How this ridiculous reference proves god / the bible is another story. I suspect this was an infantile argument that follows the path “The bible said there would be people like you; there are people like you; the bible is 100% true.” This is hardly an argument that any intelligent Christian would stand on.

    I suspect that a pile of dog crap on the sidewalk would affirm the faith of a believer like this one.

    On a side note, maybe if you forward this post to the government you can get tax exempt status; sounds like you saved at least one soul. What will you call the new church?

  35. I couldn’t agree with you more…. The chart below speaks for itself. If the image doesn’t display, just go to this link:

    Thanks,
    Nick
    Critical Critique

  36. Stoobs says:

    Piles of dog do can’t possibly affirm christian faith. I have it on good authority that they stink of Tao.

  37. The Tao that can be smelled is not the eternal Tao.

  38. Stoobs says:

    He who sniffs Tao shall never smell it, but he who sniffs life shall find his nose always filled with Tao.

  39. Paul says:

    Is Atheism the source of all humanities problems? Of course not! Atheism in and of itself does not make people act a certain way; I have no doubt that some of the most socially conscious people are atheists! It is fear or hate that makes us do evil things to each other. Some of us have done atrocious things in the name of God; while other’s have done atrocious things w/o giving God a second thought. Atheism strives for a life w/o God; it does not promote increasing the amount of hate fear in the world by being as mean as we can to each other! It is also true that a lot of evil has been done in the world by the religious under God’s name. Both groups are following the fear and hate they feel as a result of the experiences that they have had. People who follow the fear in their hearts and not the love are the source of all of humanities problems.

    At first when I started to read the posts here I was having a hard time determining which side everyone was on as you all sounded the same to me; with the exception of L. Ron Brown. Ultimately, the answer lies in how we treat each other; and is not linked to our understanding of the universe.

    p.s. I have been away for a while, so I have some cathing up to do and some posting on other links, specifically responses to your questions, L. Ron Brown, under the is it Arrogant question.

  40. L. Ron Brown says:

    Paul: It seems like you might’ve misinterpreted my stance (perhaps I haven’t been clear in it). I don’t think its the source of humanity’s problems either. I don’t think it motivates anything, good or bad. It’s just the absence of a particular type of belief. At most, it frees people from a particular type of moral restraint—fear of God. But one doesn’t need to fear God in order to respect and dignify the well-being, suffering, autonomy and liberties of others.

    However, something else just occurred to me. We’ve all heard religious folk say that without God there is no reason to be moral. Such statements suggest that unless there is some ultimate transcendent objective morals, then people have no basis or reason for being considerate. This is nonsense, however, as we are all capable of empathizing with others and wanting to establish relationships of mutual trust and respect (with the exception of certain subpopulations, e.g., sociopathic and severely autistic people). But what if we were raised to believe that all morality comes from God? What if we had been taught to think that God was the ultimate pillar of morality? If we stopped believing in God, would we subsequently be less morally guided than others who continued to believe or that didn’t believe but were raised with far more emphasis on empathy and respect for others? Now, I’m not suggesting that strongly religious families do not emphasize the themes of empathy and respect. But if they emphasize God as being the primary moral compass and then belief is removed, I wonder if some people raised in such a way would be less morally guided as a consequence, at least for a certain limited period. It’s entirely possible that they may not be, though, as they still have empathy- and respect-based moral sensitivities intact. This would be a pretty interesting thing to study.

  41. jonolan says:

    Ron,

    If you want to conduct empirical, anecdotal study of the matter, talk to Pakistani immigrants who came over here for college. Many exhibited the change in behavior you’ve described.

  42. Paul says:

    Ron:

    No I don’t think I misinterpreted your responses; I think I was the one not being clear. I meant that of all the responses I read, your responses appeared to be more geared toward furthering our understanding rather than expressing hatred or anger at those with differing views.

    This is where my experiences differ from what most people report for themselves. People speak of being afraid of God, and that motivates them to do good deeds so that they can say “Hey look what I have done, and everybody saw me do it too!” This idea goes against everything I know. I would have to say that I am in love with God and I have always been– even though I didn’t always understand it. So how does this play out in my life? I do not do things to protect my soul as I do not know how to hide what is in my heart. Here is an example of what I mean. I kept seeing this homeless man for weeks while on the way to work. I would usually stop and speak with him for a moment as it is 3:30 a.m.. One day he says to me it is his birthday in a couple of weeks. So I decided to go and buy him some hot packs for his hands and feet. I kept them with me until the day he said it was his birthday, and being the skeptical person I am I asked him what day it was and he said in the most jovial tone “It’s my birthday.” Having verified that it was most likely his birthday I then gave him these packs. Why did I do this? I have never felt, heard, seen (directly or indirectly), touched, known, or knew somone who knew what a coincidence was? I have felt God and that feels like pure love, so I decided that there must be a reason why I kept bumping into this homeless man with the beautiful disposition. In all my experiences the central theme has always been that we are all connected and that God loves everyone equally. How could I feel like I am in love with God and not want to do things that would please it, like I do for my wife, or my close friends? Whenever I have been in love it is not fear of them that motivates me, it is how much I want to please them because I am in love with them. Do I think that being in Love with God is the only motivator to do these kinds of things? Of course not! I did these kind of things before I understood that it was God that was present in my life, but I also did some things that I would never do today. A really good friend of my wifes died a few weeks ago and she was as agnostic as you can come without being an atheist. During the funeral I heard a story about her that almost mimics my story and she did it all on her own. I admire people like that more than I do those, like myself, who do these things with God in our lives in some form or another.

    Ron, I am not one of those religious people who would ever say that w/o God there is no reason to be moral. While I do agree, on the one hand, that fear of a being so powerful that it could create all of our reality is a powerful motivator. The kind of people who would say that are the kind of people who know God through books– even if some of the books or stories were cosmically guided. Like when I admire those who do good without having God play a part in their life; I also admire those who have the real faith, those who believe in God without having had any mystical experiences, epiphanies, etc.

    I mentioned a story in a previous posting, where I had a falling out with a close friend who I finally told I would not be hanging out with as she continually would say things designed to hurt me. I then proceeded to bump into her all over the city of Toronto, even though I didn’t know where she lived (she moved when she married). Any way, years after this happened I started having dreams with her in it. The central theme was that my heart was starting to feel softer. I started to realise that I really wanted her back in my life as I really do love her. Only something that could know what was in my heart could help me to understand that. Recently I was on Craigslist as I would like to buy a used motorcylce for the spring. At one point I had a strong urge to go somewhere else on CL, so I simply followed where I was guided. I ended up in the personals’ section (though I am not looking for anyone) and I read four entries before realising why I had been guided there. The fourth entry was written by her, even though she didn’t use her name and she used an anonymous id; I still knew it was her. How? Because I am in love with her and that gives me a view of her heart that other’s do not have. She is also an agnostic, and I definitly am difficult for her to incorporate into her view of the world. She has asked me numerous times how I could know it was God? So I responded to her posting and asked how I could know it was her? My point was if I can know this anonymous posting is you (her), then why can’t I also know when it is God? In my opinion, it is the love I feel in my heart that allows me to know her or God no matter how they try to hide themselves! She is a stong believer in science as a way to understand the universe, so I asked her what is the branch of science that would allow me to get to an anonymous posting on the internet within the allotted time, as she deleted the message within a couple of days, and to know unequivocally that it was her? We may one day understand science so well that we will be able to do that; but currently I do not think we could even create a computer programme that would be able to do that?

    Ron, I think that it is fear that leads us to be mean or evil toward one another. It is that same fear that can lead religious people to behave as you describe in your last paragraph. Ultimatley, people are the lowest common denominator and so we will find the same fear/evil in all groups of society; the religious are not immune from feeling fear anymore than an atheist is immune from feeling love.

    If there is only one source of all of humanity’s problems I would think it would be something that is contained, in differing amounts, within all of us; e.g. the human ego. The source of humanity’s problems certainly could not be ascribed onto a small segment of the population.

  43. There is no hatred or anger in most of the posts here; perhaps incredulity and maybe a little outrage.

    All your stories prove is that life is full of coincidences. So what? God is coincidences? In a complex world, it is incredible to me that we don’t notice more coincidences. A coworker of mine once had a moped stolen. She noticed that someone was riding past her house on a moped that was identical to hers, so she followed him one day. It wasn’t her moped, but it had the very next serial number, so it was the next moped produced after hers. Beyond that, the person who owned it was just hired and worked for the same company on the same floor as she worked; they hadn’t been introduced yet. The lesson here, shit happens, get over yourself. Not every coincidence means god exists.

    The only meaning in the world is the meaning you impose on it. You are looking for something to make a case in support of your delusional beliefs. Try coming from a perspective of skepticism. All you need to do is admit that it could have happened by chance alone, then god is out of the picture.

    If you know someone well, it’s not surprising you would recognize their writing and language. That’s what knowing someone is all about. Recognizing someone from a personal ad is hardly the same as knowing god when s/he talks to you. A personal ad is a real thing, voices in your head are delusions. If you want to believe it, you will, despite the fact that there are likely dozens of explanations which don’t involve made up gods.

    Have a look at this comment in a different thread to see just how far people will go to justify nonsensical beliefs.

    I’ll grant that ego is the main problem, but you don’t overcome ego with delusional thinking. A little skepticism and rationality go a lot further.

  44. Paul says:

    I certainly am having a hard time feeling the love in your posting? The things I spoke of with my friend are beyond coincidence as how could I even find the posting as:

    1) I didn’t know she was even posting a message
    2) The message was only there for 2-3 days then she deleted it
    3) It is not like someone handed me a few pages with writing on it and asked me to identify who wrote it!
    4) I didn’t know that she used CL as a means to get dates. I knew that she met her husband (who no longer is with her) on Lavalife (I think that is what it is called), not CL.
    5) While it is true that I know her well, I do not know what she is doing and when she is doing it!
    6) I followed my heart to find the posting (and I will continue to do so in the future) and these kind of things will keep happening regardless of how other people feel. I can see no other way I could be able to find this ‘needle in a haystack’ with as much love here as there is. The coincidences that I am aware of that have happened in my life are not accompanied with the feeling of love; the simply were, no more.

    Your message is to tell me that I don’t know what the f__k I am talking about; whereas my message is about my experiences which you know nothing about. I am speaking of things that have happened to me and continue to happen to me. I do not feel the need to insult your position, though it seems equally illogical from my perspective. I would also think Stephen Hawkings would be talking mumbo jumbo which only a few elite people would understand. Since I don’t understand it, and nor does most of the world; I guess I can yell “bullshit” as it makes no sense to me? This is how I see your position as you have admitedly no experience and so you can not accept the experience of others as we must be too stupid to understand what has happened to us? When I was in school there were some who were way smarter than I; should I have got upset that they understood things that I don’t? Would it make me look wiser in their eyes if I got the rest of us together (those who felt the same way) and we publicly put them down?

    In my experience I can break everything I do down to whether it follows love or fear/hate. So when I read your (anyone’s) posting I try to analyse it from that perspective. If you are arguing from a position of ignorance (arguing about something you have no experience with), and trying to convince somone who does have experience in that area; I can not see the love within this position? If you disagree, might it not be better to simply say so? To actively attempt to take away my faith (all is possible except that), feels to me like somone is trying to rape my soul. If I were to change my mind, then what good could come of it? To be able to truly answer that you need more information than you have or appear willing to accept– by that I mean you need to understand what I feel I would be losing, not what you think I would be losing). It seems obvious to me that our brains are very powerful and that our thoughts make up the way we perceive the world. So if you do not believe in God, you will not see it anywhere; conversely if you know God then you can see it’s influence all over the place. Just as when you know someone so well that you can recognise their anonymous words, when you know God you will also be able to recognise it’s anonymous words. I have never actively attempted to convince anyone that God exists, unless they actively attempt to tell me it does not exist. The truth is out there, and like you, I use science. However I use it as a tool, not as a means to view the world. The things that have happened to me, and many members of my family; do not need the input or opinion of others to justify or for me to accept. I did not understand that it was God afffecting my life until I was in Grade 13 and a friend suggested that I read St. Matthew as he said “A lot of the things you speak about are in there.” When I read St. Matthew I had shivers run down my spine and tears in my eyes as I instantly recognised that this was what was affecting my life. Up until then, God was only theoretical to me, I had always attributed the strange things that happened to me to something I had also never seen, a coincidence, or something else equally as cold.

    My sister, on the other hand, has been a psychic all her life. She would often tell us things that were going to happen before they happened. She was bowling with my mom when in walked a woman and my sister firmly told my mom not to let that woman in our house. That woman is now my dad’s wife. Another example from my sister happened when she was on vacation in Europe. She said she thought she had a dream where she was in a non-corporeal form watching a good friend of her’s undergoing surgery in a hospital when he suddenly flatlined. She saw him leaving his body and she yelled at him that it was not his time to die and he needed to return to his body. Six months later when she meet up with this guy he tells her “I had this wierd experience. I was in a major car crash in California and I remember flatlining and seeing you there yelling and screaming at me.” He then told her what she had told us she had said. This friend of hers is also an agnostic and he does not like to talk about it for reasons that I am sure make more sense to you than they do me; since I have always seen these kind of things as an opportunity to explore what is out there, not as something to be ignored or actively dismissed as “nonsensical beliefs”. These are not things that coincidence can explain, but I am sure you will come up with something; otherwise how can these things fit into your view of the world? The beauty of the world we live in is “You can believe whatever you want!” While my experiences differ from yours, I really hope my heart never becomes as cold as your appears to be. I mean no disrespect when I say that, I am only saying the truth that I see. You see, I could never try and take something so beautiful away from someone. What is the difference between forcing ourselves physically on someone or emotinally bullying someone, or trying to take away their faith? Do you believe I would be better off without God in my life? Have you ever read the poem “Footprints”? For you they must be mere words on a page, but to me they are music to my ears as I have experienced what it is talking about! I can not read that poem w/o tears forming. I am not sure if you know how it feels to be so in love with someone that it can make you cry when you think about it? Is it not possible that I could love God so much that I can see it where you can not? That is what I did when I recognised my friend’s anonymous posting. Do you think you would have an easier time recognising my friend even though you do not know her? So if you do not know my friend and so you can not identify her anonymous posting because of your admitted lack of knowledge of her; does it not work the same way with God? Do you really expect to see God when you have convinced yourself that it does not exist?

    I know that the way we think affects the way we perceive the world and the way we interact with it. Luckily for me, I do not need anyone else to convince me that God is real. I can ‘see’ it the same way that I could ‘see’ my friend in her posting. If it were a matter that I felt this way since a little boy, then I simply learnt what my culture promotes. I did not truely understand that it was God affecting my life until I was 18 and about to graduate from high school. Up until then I attributed all that happened to me to coincidence, and other like things, and since I am a very skeptical person it took a long time for me to be convinced. Believe it or not!

    I have observed that we (all of us) tend to dismiss that we do not understand, or that which does not conform to our view of the world. I can not be convince that God does not exist, yet most people I speak with about my experiences; try. Either they haven’t listened to me, or they don’t believe the words I speak.

    I can’t help but feel that I am getting the better end of the bargain as:

    1) Even if all I say is wrong I won’t find out until I die, but then since I was wrong there will be nothing, so what ill effect will have happened? Maybe I won’t have got laid enough, or smoked enough weed, or drank enough beer? God allows us to do whatever we want, and yes that means that bad things will happen to you because of other people’s poor choices, not God’s.

    2) If I am right I won’t have a hard time understanding what I am experiencing, and you will be in for a shock. I am not saying that you will be punished as I do not believe that God will punish anyone until we are all fully aware of the rules.

    3) Having had mystical experiences since I was 5 years old and in a Montreal hospital, it has never felt like a choice for me; especially once I fully understood what was happening. I never had to decide if I would believe or not believe. I suspect that, ironically, I would feel like you if I had not had the experiences I have had. I hope that I would not feel the need to insult your position, but I suspect that if it were not for God’s influence on me then I would do likewise. I go to the doctor when I am sick; maybe the doctor paid some house calls to me as I had the potential to be ‘Typhoid Mary’? I can feel the anger/fear/hatred in my heart just like the rest of us; neither am I immune to the vagaries of life.

    Something I found interesting? You acknowledged that ego is the main problem, then you proceeded to attack my position with your ego by saying “you don’t overcome ego by delusional thinking” I agree, you overcome ego by limiting its ability to dissuade you from accepting what your heart already knows. The universe has been around a lot longer than we have. I know there were times, before I understood that it was God that was affecting my life, that I felt like I had ‘won one’ with God as I felt like I had proven it does not exist. Today I know I was wrong. So believe me when I say I was once also disillusioned with God, but I can not deny that which I know anymore than you can accept that which you do not know. I, however, will not try to insult or put down your position as you have a right to believe what ever you want to believe. I also have a right to have whatever experiences life throws my way without having to apologise to others who have not had the same experiences. If it were not for the fact that there are some (like yourself) who actively try and convince me to lose my faith; you would probably not have ever come into contact with me.

    From your perspective this is probably a lose-lose situation as I can not be convinced to change my mind or to change the veracity of my stories, a.k.a. my life, so that it can be easier to maintain the view of the world that you have. I also will continue to have God with me and I will also continue to pray that there will come a day where we will all follow the love within our hearts (words are insufficient when compared with the experiences we can have), and ignore the fear/hate that I know that we all have in our hearts. Just because I have been touched by God and even though this appears to cause disdane in some (I guess this should be considered a coincidence!); does not mean that I feel like I understand everything there is to understand. As a matter of fact I concur with what has been ascribed as Socrates’s main contribution to Philosophy; namely that compared to what is out there, we know nothing, or at least very little. Let’s see, 15 billion years + or – a couple billion vs. a number that I am sure comprises only two digits for the majority, if not all, of the readers of this blog.

    If you wish to find evidence that contradicts what I know; you will be able to. The problem is there is no branch of science that will allow me to show you what I have experienced, so you can continue to deny, laugh at, mock, have disdane for, what I know to be true. I do not feel that way about you views; as a matter of fact it makes me sad that you haven’t experienced God like I have. It is not like we ask to be the way we are? I would love to be musically inclined, but my experiences did not allow me to believe that I was capable of playing music, so today I only listen to it. Ideally we should get what we need to feel good about ourselves from within; then we won’t feel the need to insult another in an attempt to inflate our own ego.

  45. 1) coincidence – the occurrence of events that happen at the same time by accident but seem to have some connection;
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/coincidence

    The events you describe are the definition of coincidence. It is only delusional beliefs that add anything more to the story.

    2) There are no such thing as mystical experiences. There are experiences which are given mystical explanations. If you are committed to those explanations and defy any attempt to explain the events in other terms that is pretty much the definition of a delusional belief.

    3) You note that you have grown up with delusional beliefs, and that your family shares delusional beliefs. If your sister is really psychic, Amazing Randi has $1 million waiting for her, but I’m guessing there is some way you can qualify her psychic ability so that you can justify her belief in spite of all evidence that psychics do not exist.

    4) Ego is overcome with rationality. Charles Manson and the Son of Sam killer were probably as equally committed to their beliefs as you, yet it still didn’t make them right.

    If you go out into the world and look for evidence that your delusion is real, and discount every other possibility that is presented to you, you will remain convinced of your delusions. Have fun with that.

  46. Paul says:

    I was really hoping for more. If you read all of the postings I have done there is an ‘evolution’ to them that I do not see in the rebuttals I have received. You have not addressed my main point: the difference between a coincidence and an event that is more than a coincidence is the feeling of love that accompanies it. How does coincidence address two seperate people having a shared experience when they are thousands of kilometres away from each other?

    I would love it if someone could address my points in a way that ackowledges that they have actually listened to what I have said. Reiterating why you feel that I am wrong does not address anything I have said. Am I just not wise enough?

    I am asking for direct discussion of my points, not more ad hominem arguments that do not further our understanding of the mysteries of life!

  47. There was nothing ad hominem in my post.

    I assert you do not seem to understand the meaning of coincidence. Everything you describe is precisely coincidence. It’s nice that you have happy coincidences in your life, but your feelings about them don’t make them more than they are.

    There are undoubtedly many people who have dreams of each other at the same time. Some of them remember and share them with each other most people do not. That makes it seem like a big deal when it just isn’t. It’s a coincidence, nothing more. The amazing thing to me, in a world with 6 billion people is that you don’t hear about these things more often. That’s the freaky thing.

    Other than your misunderstanding of statistics and coincidence and your committed belief in delusions, what are the points you wish to be addressed?

  48. There was nothing ad hominem in my post.

    I assert you do not seem to understand the meaning of coincidence. Everything you describe is precisely coincidence. It’s nice that you have happy coincidences in your life, but your feelings about them don’t make them more than they are.

    There are undoubtedly many people who have dreams of each other at the same time. Some of them remember and share them with each other most people do not. That makes it seem like a big deal when it just isn’t. It’s a coincidence, nothing more. The amazing thing to me, in a world with 6 billion people is that you don’t hear about these things more often. That’s the freaky thing.

    Other than your misunderstanding of statistics and coincidence and your committed belief in delusions, what are the points you wish to be addressed?

  49. There was nothing ad hominem in my post.

    I assert you do not seem to understand the meaning of coincidence. Everything you describe is precisely coincidence. It’s nice that you have happy coincidences in your life, but your feelings about them don’t make them more than they are.

    There are undoubtedly many people who have dreams of each other at the same time. Some of them remember and share them with each other most people do not. That makes it seem like a big deal when it just isn’t. It’s a coincidence, nothing more. The amazing thing to me, in a world with 6 billion people is that you don’t hear about these things more often. That’s the freaky thing.

    Other than your misunderstanding of statistics and coincidence and your committed belief in delusions, what are the points you wish to be addressed?

  50. There was nothing ad hominem in my post.

    I assert you do not seem to understand the meaning of coincidence. Everything you describe is precisely coincidence. It’s nice that you have happy coincidences in your life, but your feelings about them don’t make them more than they are.

    There are undoubtedly many people who have dreams of each other at the same time. Some of them remember and share them with each other most people do not. That makes it seem like a big deal when it just isn’t. It’s a coincidence, nothing more. The amazing thing to me, in a world with 6 billion people is that you don’t hear about these things more often. That’s the freaky thing.

    Other than your misunderstanding of statistics and coincidence and your committed belief in delusions, what are the points you wish to be addressed?

  51. There was nothing ad hominem in my post.

    I assert you do not seem to understand the meaning of coincidence. Everything you describe is precisely coincidence. It’s nice that you have happy coincidences in your life, but your feelings about them don’t make them more than they are.

    There are undoubtedly many people who have dreams of each other at the same time. Some of them remember and share them with each other most people do not. That makes it seem like a big deal when it just isn’t. It’s a coincidence, nothing more. The amazing thing to me, in a world with 6 billion people is that you don’t hear about these things more often. That’s the freaky thing.

    Other than your misunderstanding of statistics and coincidence and your committed belief in delusions, what are the points you wish to be addressed?

  52. rafael says:

    THE SOURCE OF ALL EVIL: THE ATHEIST IGNORANCE
    The source of all evil, the irrational atheist who blatantly impose on families a mechanism of unbelief that leads to murderous intolerance. Without rational force in their views because and atheist will never study seriously the subject of God. Atheists are teaching our children their ignorance which promote crime, lies, and have created today’s system of immorality. Rafael The first subject we are confronted with is God.Let us read a few verses from the Bible. Psalm 14:1 of the Old Testament says, “The fool has said in his heart,/There is no God.” This sentence may also be translated as “The fool does not want God in his heart.” The result of saying this can be found in the second sentence of the same verse: “They are corrupt; they do abominable deeds.”Let us also take a passage from the New Testament. Hebrews 11:6 says, “For he who comes forward to God must believe that He is.”THREE KINDS OF PEOPLEWhether you claim to be a Christian, a non-believer, or a seeker after truth, we will start by examining the subject of God. In this respect the world is divided into three camps. The first is that of the atheists who do not believe in a God. The second consists of the agnostics. They have no sure knowledge about the deity. On the one hand, they dare not say there is no God, but on the other hand, they are not clear if God does exist. We belong to the third category of those who believe in God.PROSECUTIONIs there a God? I will not try to say yes or no to this question. Rather, I will make this place a law court. I will ask you to be the judge, and I will be the prosecutor. The work of a judge is to make decisions, to approve or disapprove the truth of statements; the work of a prosecutor is to present all the evidence and arguments that he can possibly gather.Before we proceed, we have to be clear about one fact: all prosecutors are not eyewitnesses of crimes. They are not policemen. A policeman may personally witness an event, whereas a prosecutor obtains his information only indirectly. He places all the charges, evidence, and arguments collected before the judge. In the same way, I shall present before you everything that I can possibly find. If you ask whether I have seen God or not, I would say “no.” I am reading or demonstrating what I have gathered. My job is to search for facts and to call for witnesses. You are to arrive at a conclusion yourself.QUALIFICATIONSMany people assert that there is no God. As a prosecutor I ask you first to check the qualification of these people. Are they qualified to make such claims? Are those who assert that there is no God moral or immoral? Do not just listen to their arguments. Even robbers and swindlers have their arguments. Of course, the arguments support them as robbers and swindlers. The subject of their arguments may be very noble; they may talk about the state of the nations and the welfare of society, but their opinions cannot be seriously considered. They are not worthy of passing such judgments. If a man is upright in his conduct and moral judgment, we can give credibility to his words, but if not, his words lose their credibility. This is especially true when it relates to the question of deity. It is interesting to note that the moral standards of men are directly related to their concept about God. Those who admit their own ignorance have a passable standard, while insistent atheists invariably have a low level of moral responsibility. I do not claim to know all atheists, but of the several thousand that I know, none of them possess a notably commendable morality. You may tell me that there was once a moral atheist, but if there was one, he is dead. Or you may tell me that there will be a moral atheist, but whoever he may be, he is not here yet. At least we can say that for now, we do not know a moral atheist.NO ATHEIST IS MORALOnce at a gathering at the University of Nanking, I remarked that no atheist is moral. There were many students on the campus who did not believe in God. They were greatly offended by these words. The next day, while I was speaking, they came and shuffled their feet in an attempt to distract me and the audience. The next day when they came again, they made funny gestures and faces at me and carried on continuously throughout the speaking. On the fourth day the vice-president of the university, Dr. Williams, came and said to me, “We had better change the place of meeting. These students are infuriated by your assertion on the first day that atheists are not moral. Today they are not going to use their feet and lips only; they are going to use their fists. I heard that they will be waiting at the entrance of the hallway and will jump on you when you step in.” I went along with the arrangement and conducted the meeting at another place. On the way to the meeting I walked alongside many students and listened to their conversations. Although many did not agree with me and felt uneasy about my preaching, they wanted to come back. One among them remarked, “Mr. Nee said that people who have no God have no sense of moral responsibility. This is perfectly right. How can anyone with moral decency shuffle his feet and jest while others are delivering a speech? Yesterday they caused such a disturbance in the meeting, and today they are going to come to fight. This is surely not what an honorable person would do. There is no doubt that those who do not believe in God do not have moral decency. Let us go to the meeting regardless of what they plan to do.”Once a young man told a preacher, “When I was young, I seriously believed in God. But now that I am in college. I can no longer believe in Him.” The fifty-year-old preacher patted the young man’s shoulder and said, “My son, you do not believe in God anymore! Let me ask you a question: Since you have been converted to be an atheist, have you advanced morally? Has atheism helped you become better? Has it made your thoughts cleaner or your heart purer? Or did it make you just the opposite?” That young man felt ashamed. He admitted that he had gone downhill morally since his denial of God. The preacher pressed on: “I am afraid that you are not really saying that you believe there is no God, you are just hoping that there is no God.”DO NOT JUDGE ACCORDING TO HOPEMany people are not really convinced that there is no God; they merely hope so. They would rather that there were no God in the universe. For them it would be much more convenient in respect to many things.I myself was one of those people. When I was a student I claimed that there was no God. Although I was extremely strong in my claim, something within me seemed to be protesting and saying, “There is a God.” I knew deep in my heart that God exists. But my lips refused to admit this so that I could have an excuse for sinning. By declaring the nonexistence of God, going to sinful places was justifiable. If there were no God, I would become bold to sin. When you believe in God, you dare not do certain things. When you do away with God, you feel free to commit the worst sins without any fear whatsoever. If you sincerely hope to raise your moral standard by asserting the nonexistence of God, then your arguments are still plausible. However, the only reason men claim that there is no God is for an excuse for lawlessness, immorality, license, and indecency. For this reason, their whole argument is not worthy of consideration. The question is, “Are you qualified to claim that there is no God?” If your hope is merely for an escape from justice, you have lost your ground already.IS MAN THE GREATEST?One day a young man came to me and said, “I do not believe in a so-called God. Man is the greatest. He is the noblest among all creatures. There is no God in this universe; man is everything.” We were sitting opposite each other. After hearing what he said, I stood up, went to one side of the room, stooped down, and gazed at him intently. I said, “You are really great!” Then I walked to the other side of the room and looked at him from another angle. “That is right,” I said deliberately; “You are great! In Kiangsu province there are thirty million who are like you. There are at least four hundred million of your kind in China. The world contains only two billion who are the same as you are. Do you realize that during the last few days there has been a flood in the south? The dykes along the river are in jeopardy. The whole population in Hsing Hwa with more than two hundred thousand people have been recruited and rushed to the dykes in a panic. They are carrying earth with them to reinforce the banks. The repair work is still going on.”Suppose that the world is recruited to hollow out the sun. A hole is drilled through the surface, and everyone has to remove a load from the inside. Assuming that no one will be burned to ashes, do you think that they can do the job? Even if all the people themselves were inside, they would not fill up the sun. That is not all. If you put several hundred planets the size of Earth inside and started shaking it, you would still find that the sun would be very empty inside. How many suns are there in the universe? Do you realize that the number of solar systems is in the hundreds of millions?”HOW VAST IS THE UNIVERSE?I then said to the young man, “And here you are! You have not even walked through the whole earth, and yet you consider yourself greater than the whole universe. Let me ask you, do you know how vast the universe is? Take light for example. Light travels at 186,000 miles per second. Try to calculate how far light travels in one minute, or one hour, or a day, or a year. There are some stars whose light takes three thousand years to reach us. Go and work out how far they are from us! And you think you are so great! I would therefore advise all atheists and young men alike to admit the incompetency of man not only morally, but intellectually and academically as well.”CAN MAN EXTEND BEYOND THE BOUNDSOF TIME AND SPACE?Another time when I was in Kaifeng, I met another one of those young, stout atheists. I walked up to him and patted him on the shoulder, saying, “I saw God today!” He stared at me in curiosity and demanded a further word. I replied, “You are God! If you know that there is no God, then you have to be God.” He asked for an explanation. I said, “Since you are convinced that there is no God, you must have traveled over the whole earth. If God is not in Shanghai, He may still be in Nanking. You must have been to both places. That is not all. If God is not in Nanking, He may be in Tientsin. You must also have been to Tientsin. But you cannot draw this conclusion simply by being in China; God may be in another country. So you must have been to every country on this earth. If God is not in one place, He may be in another. Therefore, you must have traveled throughout the world. One never knows if God is hiding at the North Pole or the South Pole, or in the woods or wilderness somewhere. So you must have combed through all those regions as well. If God is not found on earth, He may be found on the moon. You therefore must have been to the moon. God may also be on other planets or in outer space. This means that you have traveled through space and all the other galaxies as well. If you can say that there is no God, it must mean that you have traveled throughout the whole universe. If this is the case, you must be God yourself.”This is not all. Even though you know that God does not exist in Shanghai today, how about yesterday? Perhaps God will come tomorrow. You say that you know there is no God today, but what about last year? And how do you know that God will not come next year? You say that there is no God this year, but what about a thousand years ago? Very well, you must be an everlasting one who knows everything about the past and future. You have to be a being beyond time and space. You must be in Tientsin and in another country at the same time; you must be omnipresent from the east to the west, from the North Pole to the South Pole. Who else but you can be the very God? If you are not God, you can never be qualified to say that there is no God.”THE EVIDENCESome will immediately step back and say, “I have never said that I know there is no God. One can never tell whether there is a God or not.” Well, if you cannot give a conclusion, I will ask witnesses whom I consider trustworthy to present arguments to you and prove the existence of God. Again let me say this, you are the judge, and I am the prosecutor. I am presenting only the evidence before you. Decide for yourself if there is a God.THE UNIVERSEFirst, look at nature, the world that is before our eyes and every phenomenon in it. We all know that scientific knowledge is the rational explanation of natural phenomena. For example, there is an observed drop in the temperature of a patient. The drop in temperature is a phenomenon, and the explanation for it is scientific knowledge. When an apple falls from the tree, it is a phenomenon. Why does an apple not fly into the air? The explanation for this phenomenon constitutes knowledge. A man with knowledge is a man who has the proper explanations.ONLY TWO EXPLANATIONSThe universe displays countless phenomena of diverse forms, colors, shapes, and nature. We cannot fail to notice these phenomena before our eyes. The explanation for all these phenomena is known as knowledge. All thoughtful persons have only two explanations as far as the origin of the universe is concerned; there is no third explanation. You have to take one or the other of them.What are these two explanations? The first says that the universe came into being through natural evolution and self-interaction; the second attributes its origin to a personified Being with intellect and purpose. These are the only two explanations presented by all philosophers of the world. There is not a third one.Where did the universe come from? Did it come into existence by itself or through chance? Or was it designed by the One from whom we derive the concept of God? You have to think and then make a decision about it. Everything that is by chance has certain characteristics. I would suggest you list all of these in a detailed way, the more the better, and then compare all the phenomena of the universe with your list. Alongside of this make another list of the characteristics which, in your opinion, would be prominent if the universe were created by an intelligent Being. Now by a simple comparison of nature with your two lists, it will be easy to draw a reasonable conclusion.CHANCE EVENTSWhat are the characteristics of things that come about by chance? First, we know that they are unorganized. At the most they can be partially integrated. They can never be totally organized. One can achieve a specified goal by chance once, but he can never achieve a specified goal by chance all the time. Anything that comes together by chance can only be integrated partially, never totally. For example, if I throw this chair to the other side of the room, by chance it may come to rest at a perfect angle. If I do the same with a second chair, it may also lie neatly beside the first one. But this will not keep on happening with the third and the fourth and so on. Chance can only provide partial organization. It does not guarantee total integration. Furthermore, all random interactions are aimless, disorganized, and purposeless. They are without order and structure; they are loose, formless, disorderly, and not directed toward any meaningful purpose. Briefly, we can say that the characteristics of chance events are disharmony, irregularity, inconsistency, purposelessness, and insignificance. We will write down these four characteristics on our list.CONSISTENCY AND ORGANIZATIONNow let us compare the things in the universe with these characteristics. Take, for example, the human being. He is carried in his mother’s womb for nine months and delivered; he grows up and eventually dies. This cycle is repeated for every single individual. Consistency can be observed. It is not a wild game of chance. Again, look at the sun above your head. It does not exist purposelessly. Rather, it has its purpose and significance. Look at the moon, the stars, and the myriads of galaxies through your telescope. Some stars have their own planets. They all follow definite tracks and patterns. They are all organized. Their manner of motion can be calculated and predicted. The calendar in your hand is derived from them. Even next year’s calendar can be printed before this year is past. All these show that the universe is organized, consistent, and purposeful.MICROORGANISMSLet us turn to the micro-world. Take a thin slice of wood. Put it under a microscope and observe its grain and structure, all meticulously regular and rhythmic. Even a blade of grass and the petal of a flower are finely fashioned. Nothing is unorganized or confused. Everything is disciplined and functional. All these things witness one fact to you: the universe, with its macro and micro aspects, is purposeful and meaningful. Can you say that all these came into existence by chance? Surely you cannot.IS IT OCCUPIED?Once I was preaching the gospel with a co-worker of mine in a village. On the way back we were extremely thirsty. There was neither a teahouse nor stream for us to get water. In fact the whole area was uninhabited. After walking for a while we came across a thatched hut. We went to the door quickly and knocked. For a long time there was no answer. We thought that no one lived there. When we opened the door and went in, we found that the floor was swept clean. In one of the rooms was a bed with nicely folded sheets. There was a teapot on the table, and the tea in it was still warm. I said, “Surely someone must be living here. All the arrangements indicate beyond doubt that this place is occupied by someone. We should not drink this tea. We must get out quickly or else people will think we are thieves.” We walked out and waited for the owner to return.By observing the arrangements of the house, we concluded that someone was living there, without having seen the occupant. In the same way, we know that God is there by the arrangement of everything in the universe, although we cannot see Him. Every single phenomenon of nature is so balanced, organized, meaningful, and functional. You may say that they come by chance, but it is impossible for me to believe that chance is its sole originator. The Bible says, “The fool has said in his heart,/There is no God.” Only foolish people can say in their hearts that there is no God.CHANCE OR DESIGNThe universe has to be created by Someone with profound wisdom, vast knowledge, and intricate design. If you cannot accept the concept of random formation of the universe, you have to admit that it was created by such a God. There cannot be a third explanation. The choice is left to you. You have to decide if the universe came by chance or whether it was created by God.A DEMAND AND ITS OBJECTOne witness may not be enough. I will call in another. This time we will consider man’s heart. Before doing so, we should also observe one fact: wherever there is a desire, there must first be an object for that desire. For example, an orphan who has never seen his father naturally has a desire for a kind of paternal love. I have asked many people who were orphans, and they all have felt this irrepressible yearning. By this we can see that every desire of the heart arises out of an object in the world.As human beings we have a need for social belonging. We need companionship and mutuality. If you put a boy on a deserted island and he grows up alone, he still has the yearning for companions, for beings like himself, even though he has never seen a human being. This yearning or desire is the very proof that somewhere in the world there is something known as “man.” At a certain age, man begins to think about posterity; he starts desiring children and grandchildren. This is not a mere fantasy. This desire stems out of the existence and possibility of offspring. Hence, where there is desire, there is an object for that desire.THERE IS GOD IN THE HEARTDo we have any desires other than social identity and self-propagation? What other cravings do we have? Deep in everyone there is a craving for God. Whether they are highly civilized races, such as those among the Caucasians, or the ancient civilizations, such as the Chinese civilizations, or the African natives and uncultured aborigines, they all have a common craving –God. As long as they are men, they have a yearning for God, no matter what race or nationality. This is a fact. You cannot argue against it. Everyone is seeking after God. Everywhere man is craving for God. This is very clear.By applying the principle that we just mentioned, we can see that since our heart feels the need for a God, there must necessarily be a God in the universe. Since there is a need for God in the heart, there must be the existence of God in the universe. If no God exists, we would never have such a craving in our heart. We all have an appetite for food. In the same way, we all have an appetite for God. It would be impossible to live if there was only an appetite for food but no food. Likewise, it would be impossible to live if there was a capacity for God but no God.NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT GOD?Once an atheist rudely rebuked me in a loud voice: “You said that a man has the psychological need for a God. But there is no such thing, and I do not believe in it.” I said, “Well, do you mean to say that you never think about God? In fact, even while you were talking, you were thinking about Him. This indicates that you do have a capacity for God. There is no one who has never thought about God. He may try not to think much about Him. Since this thought is in you, there must be such an object outside of you.”THE WORDS AND THE HEARTA young man once came to me to argue about God. He was vehemently against the existence of God. He gave me one reason after another for saying that there is no God. As he was enumerating the various reasons why God should not exist, I listened to him quietly without saying a word. Then I said, “Although you insist that there is no God and support yourself with so many arguments, you have lost your case already.” He said, “What do you mean?” I went on to explain: “Your mouth can say as much as you want about there not being a God, but your heart is on my side.” He had to agree with me. Although one can give all sorts of reasons in the head, there is a belief in the heart that no argument can defeat. A stubborn person may give a thousand and one reasons, but you can have the boldness to tell him, “You know better in your heart that there is a God. Why bother to look for evidence outside?”Now what would you say? After looking at nature and the universe, after checking with your inner feeling, it is up to you to decide whether or not there is a God. But you should not be irresponsible; your attitude must be sober because everyone has to meet God soon. One day you will all stand before Him. Everything concerning yourself will be laid bare. On that day you will know God. But now is the time for you to be prepared. We should all be prepared to meet our God

    • Joshua says:

      are you brain dead? what proof do you have that religion exists? and if you say “well, you can’t prove that god doesn’t exist!” then i have a question. if i told you that there were small intangible invisible smurfs running around, plotting our demise, would you believe it? why not? you can’t prove they don’t exist. they are intangible and invisible.

    • tom says:

      Your an idiot. I wish there was some sort of life after death, if only for a moment, so i could say.. ‘told you, and right now, im betting you feel like a total tosser’.

  53. L. Ron Brown says:

    I read the first 3-4 sentences of that load of garbage and was reminded that Scientology is not the only cult in the world. This individually is clearly just as indoctrinated into his brand of retardedness as any cult member on the planet.

  54. thisbusymonster says:

    It’s almost like the Christian crazies can’t be bothered to spew out that sh*t any longer so someone wrote a spambot to randomly post nonsense.

    It reminds me of an experiment that was done comparing the “philosophical” writings of Plotinus (a Christian) with the rantings of someone on an acid trip. No one could reliably tell the difference.

    Perhaps, after reading that crap, you can understand what a bad trip might be like.

  55. Stoobs says:

    I’ve had a bad acid trip, and while very unpleasant in a variety of ways, it was nowhere near as tedious as attempting to read through that six page block of unformatted text. The level of coherence, however, was about the same.

  56. Damon says:

    Yipes, looking through this thread, there are quite a few folks who haven’t quite internalised the concept of “tl:dr”!

    Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, Lenin… all power-crazed sociopaths first, and atheists a distant second. Stalin actually studied intensively for the priesthood before he found Communism.
    One factor that these “atheistic” monsters of history share with theistic monsters – like Heinrich Kramer, Tomas de Torquemada, Oliver Cromwell – is that they were all paranoid idealists. They had an “all-encompassing” view of how things ought to be, and heaven help anyone who disagreed or stood in their way.

    I, for one, hope never to be so certain of anything.

  57. Casper says:

    I’m I devout Christian. I believe and KNOW Jesus is my Savior. And I can’t wait to see all those atheists bastards burn in hell.

    • tom says:

      Well, i forget that yours is a loving and tolerant faith. Pretty much screws you coming and going eh.
      I wonder if your convinced that you yourself aren’t going to be buring for not believing in anybody else faith.
      You cant all be right….

  58. L. Ron Brown says:

    Yeah. Good luck with that Casper…

  59. Jon says:

    Holocaust was caused by trying to further the process of natural selection. Evolution and eugenics go hand in hand, look up the definitions. Read the Decent of Man by Darwin, it blatantly refers to this process. Marxism, communism, the Nazi regime, these all have close ties to evolutionary theory. Look into the biographies of these men and the people that supported them.

  60. RB says:

    Jon: Do yourself a favour and read sources other than Conservative Christian propaganda sites.

    1. Hitler was a Christian.
    2. natural selection is a metaphorical name, inspired by artificial selection. Artificial selection is when people select which types of offspring they want to proliferate. Examples include selective animal and plant breeding (e.g., dog breeding; breeding for larger or better tasting fruit, etc.). This sort of selective breeding vastly predated Darwin’s discovery of natural selection. Eugenics is a classic example of artificial selection.
    3. Even if it were true that evolutionary theory guided Hitler, that says nothing about whether or not evolution is true or not.
    4. Even creationists are cool with natural selection – within limits. They are perfectly fine with “microevolution” – i.e., changes within species. It’s only the origins of new species by way of natural selection of existing species (“macroevolution”) that they have a problem. Eugenics by the nazis was never about trying to make a new species. It was about selecting for favoured human traits and selecting against unfavoured ones. So EVEN THE MOST ADAMANT CREATIONISTS FULLY ACCEPT ALL AND ONLY THOSE PARTS OF EVOLUTIONARY THEORY THAT CORRESPOND TO EUGENICS.

    Next, please explain to me the connection between evolutionary theory – natural selection, in particular – and communism. How does the scientific theory (i.e., highly corroborated account of facts) that greater biological rewards (i.e., social dominance, offspring numbers, offspring fitness) go to those with greater biological fitness for the environment correspond to communism?! This is pure free market capitalism in the market of life!

    Also, I should say that Darwin was the first to warn against people confusing the *is* of the reality of natural selection with any eugenics-type ought – i.e., that we should try to snuff out bad genes (e.g., sterilizing people with disorders). He unambiguously spoke against this, saying it would sacrifice the noblest elements of humanity to do so.

  61. Ralph says:

    @Colin:

    > They decided that there was no god and realized that they were therefore permitted to do anything they wanted

    That’s not very different from every bloodthirsty religious who decided God was on their side and they were therefore permitted to do anything they wanted – or whatever it took – to act out on His will.

    One difference is that the latter applies not only to the Crusades, Inquisition and stuff, but also to every nutjob who committed violent acts because God told them to do it (eg, a redneck who crashed into another car because ‘the driver wasn’t driving like a christian’ <- true story, look it up). On the other hand, how many people killed because the voice of a non-god made them do it? And if you think people usually kill because they are godless in the first place, all the prison statistics in the WORLD will prove it otherwise. Death corridors all over are bursting with every flavor of believer. So if you’re interested in playing a numbers game, you lose no matter what.

  62. Kristen says:

    As an atheist, it hurts and frustrates me when people assume that because I have no religious beliefs, I am an awful person. I genuinely believe in being the best person I can be, and I don’t think I need to believe in a God to do so.
    How can I be told that an individual that rapes, kills, or does other hanus things can go to Heaven if they accept God into their hearts, but some truly wonderful people who do not have bad intentions will “go to Hell” because they don’t have the same religious views? It makes no sense to me.
    I just believe in the science of things. I have morals. I’m a good student, I’ve performed remarkably well on the ACT’s, I love my family and friends dearly, and I’m a contributing member of society. Please judge me, and others, based upon character and personality. Do not accuse me of ignorance and intolerance when you’re so unwilling to listen to opposing sides.

  63. andrew says:

    Kristen:

    No, most athiests have better moral compases than many who claim to be Christian. Difference is, if you have no divine being who establishes the moral laws, and your only moral code is what humans find acceptable, it is open to change. Who knows where that could lead?

    to good? Maybe.

    But to bad? more likely, as aspects of human greed become more and more acceptable in the eyes of men.

  64. Christian Epperly says:

    This guy in this video is so ignorant. Saying that atheist are the cause for a the bad in the world. Well the worlds population is 2.3 percent athiest. So apparently the majority of this blooldshed he is talking about is done by RELIGIOUS facists. Saying we are benifiting from choices made by men who think they know right or wrong and think they are like ‘God’, I mean really think about it…. How many of the world leaders base themselves off some kind of religion versus how many are free thinking athiests. For example the terrorists in the middle east kill for their god because their enemy is the infadel! So personaly I believe this guy in the video posted above might need to use some of those books he has to study up on some facts instead of using them to look intelligent in his video!

  65. cie18 says:

    The guy in the video above is so ignorant. He is basically saying that every atheist is evil and they are the cause for all the bad in the world. But if he took the time to think about it what has been the cause for the majority of the conflict in the world past and present has been about religion. I mean really think about it, the Roman Catholic crusade’s soul purpose was to cleanse of non-christian followers. Even now for example terrorists in the middle east, they are not fighting because its fun they are fighting for a religious cause. The bible in itself is full of evil think about it, an example, Cain killled Abel to appease God, and even God himself in the Old Testment brought on many evil acts. So I believe that before this guy starts casting his judgement which has no backbone whatsoever, he should take a look around his own backyard.

  66. Crystal says:

    You do realize the towers were hit thanks to religious? the very thing atheists are against..so that’s the biggest hypocrisy of all.

  67. Joshua says:

    Oh yeah, Colin. religious people are so peaceful compared to us evil atheists. the aztecs killed thousands of people. the damn christians burnt down libraries of other faiths. we are currently fighting people who blow themselves and others up for their god…it’s so stupid. we atheists don’t believe in god. it’s not that we don’t have consciences. we aren’t evil.

    religion is just stupid. it makes no sense. there is no evidence of it at all. if i told you that there invisible intangible smurfs running around, plotting our demise, would you believe it? i’d have just as much proof as the christians muslims and jews. but you wouldn’t believe it. know why? no proof. wanna know why religion is still around? fear. every religious person is afraid that if they don’t believe, they go to a terrible place, or something bad will happen. everyone has their doubts…the only thing that makes sure that they keep coming back to religion is that little “what if…?”. and if that’s not the case, then you’re just a fucking moron.

  68. Ben says:

    There is no way in hell my comment is going to get read im all at the damn bottom. That cartoon just seems like such a set up to make emotions run high, when did the pope say athiest were evil lol im seriously asking because i dont think he would say that? Anyone doing evil in the name of god is evil so im still trying to figure this whole religion started the death star situation that has been brought on this cartoon. People are dicks sometimes and to rationalise their dick behavious they will look to something that will absolve them of their bad thing lol Gods just an excuse not the reason to kill everyone. George bush went to iraq to save us or to save oil is a perfect example of what im saying.

  69. ABC1 says:

    The atheistic murders of thousands daily through abortions demonstrates their hatred of life and since they are gods themselves they seek to justify all their death values. The fact remains that you love your sin, your lusts and that’s why you deny God. But puny man is progressively becoming more and more degenerate and animalistic. You had better learn about the Bible before purporting to speak of and or about it. A-theism …. you cannot get away from God no matter where you go or what you do. To pretend otherwise does nothing but demonstrate your ignorance and total insufficiency. It’s interesting that people who whine about ‘the crusades’ have neither studied nor know anything of them except the putrid view they’ve been fed in their indoctrinationational institutes they falsely call ‘education’. Atheism is a religion of death and destruction – there is no evil they aren’t involved in…and the crusades were directed by atheists pretending to be Christians. Just because you visit the white house doesn’t make you the president- the fact is that the atheists (you are either for God or you’re against Him – there is no other choice…) killed in the name of Christianity to give them a bad name. That’s the way Satan operates…everything he’s about and does is counterfeit to the real deal…his days are numbered and he knows it.

  70. ABC1 says:

    Atheism is nonsense. Atheist — it’s illogical! Wholly non-sense. Let’s assume for the sake of argument I say ‘this’ item is a spoon. You who deny the existence a spoon take up the argument that this is not a spoon by talking about glasses and forks and knives – distraction but never any substance to prove your point then you project onto me your own ingnorance. I have to look at you in sheer amazement that you do not see what you are saying.
    The complexity of the human eye alone is sufficient proof of the existence of a power higher than impotent man, not to mention the complexity of each of the various systems of the human body that work as designed in perfect time unless an until abused by their Creator. Even ole Dawkins had to call on God to help him try to explain his way out of his own misguided THEOry of nonsense that exists for monetary purposes only. PRIDE…therein lies your god…you think you are a god..and should decide whatever makes you feeeeel good. So applying that rule, OK. So your neighbor thinks eating babies makes him feeeeeeel good and it’s your baby he’s boiling for breakfast but it has to have the back of its head whacked with a hammer and have its brains sucked out first because it’s still in the womb. So go on with your atheism…look at the world you’re creating. Enjoy it…it’s only going to grow darker and more violent…until it ahnilates itself.

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