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Do atheists think that evolution theory proves that there is no God?

Discussion in 'Evolution Vs. Creationism' started by Bishadi, Jul 16, 2008.

  1. rocketman

    rocketman Out there...

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    I think many atheists do, at least in part. Let's be honest, large numbers of people cite evolution as one reason for not believing in a creator. I've heard it said many times: "There is no creator. We came from monkeys(sic), so there...." and so on. It's one thing to say I don't believe, but it's something else again to offer a reason as proof.

    The doyen of evolution-as-a-popular-philosophy summed it up best:

    "...although atheism might have been logically tenable before Darwin, Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist."

    -Richard Dawkins; The Blind Watchmaker.


    Everyone believes in some kind of 'magic', whether it's a created universe or one that (inexplicably) has always been there. Think about it.
     
  2. Willamena

    Willamena Just me
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    If I may ask, what does "divine" mean (in this post)?

    Maybe it's just me, but I believe the opposite. We believe in things because they are determined true --we do not believe in a thing if we find it to be false. Once it is determined "false" belief turns to disbelief.
     
  3. Fluffy

    Fluffy A fool

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    An act of God.

    I disagree for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I think that "determined to be true" is too vague. When is something determined to be true? It can't be when you have accepted its truth because then "We believe in things because they are determined true" is the same as saying "We believe in things when we accept their truth" which is trivial. On the other hand, it can't be when a belief is measured against a standard apart from yourself because then there is no guarantee that the standard is actually measuring truth. For example, plenty of people will say that one way of determining something to be true is if it can be found in scripture. Other people say that its whatever the pixie on their shoulder tells them. More still will tell you that science or reason has the answers. And whilst all these situations are very different, what they all have in common is a claim of a mechanism of truth without a clear explanation of how that mechanism works. So "We believe in things because they are determined true" would mean "We believe in things because we believe them to be true" which, again, is trivial.

    Secondly, once we accept that beliefs are as much of an agent as we are (memetics), it becomes apparent that there is only one attribute that matters, survivability, and that only the humans and the beliefs that have that trait are the ones who will dominate. Is truth the same as survivability? No because there are thousands of religions most of which are mutually exclusive (and so clearly can't all be true) and therefore are very survivable without being true. It is not just religion either. Look back to when everyone knew that Newton was right. Look back to the 60s when everyone assumed that no other object than the sun could possibly emit radio waves that would reach the earth.
     
    #43 Fluffy, Jul 18, 2008
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2008
  4. xmakina

    xmakina New Member

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    Personally, although agnostic, I don't quite get why this has to be a point of contention.

    if you will, surely evolution could be argued as Proof God exists. Look at evolution as a process. It's so incredibly simple and yet can create vast and inspiring complexities. From the amoeba, to the human, to the elephant, to the blue whale. All these came from the most simple of principles. "Do what works." is pretty much evolution. it is the ultimate in engineering. Everything has been stripped away until all that is left is one simple mantra. And that created everything we see in nature.


    How that Isn't an argument in some small way for an increibly powerful being is beyond me.
     
  5. crystalonyx

    crystalonyx Well-Known Member

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    The existence of of the supposed Jesus cannot be detemined historically to be true, yet there are boatloads of people that believe in this mythical man. I think belief and truth are separate entities.
     
  6. Dirty Penguin

    Dirty Penguin Master Of Ceremony

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    I'm not sure. Aren't there plenty of scientist out there who are theists? I'm not sure why certain religious groups feel that people who support evolutionary theories must be out to prove a god does not exist.

    Again, not sure. I was an atheist before I actually understood what the theory of evolution was all about.

    Nope!

    I don't believe in gods so I guess that would be a....No...
     
  7. Bishadi

    Bishadi Active Member

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    you created an idea; and to know what an idea is within the mind, physically as in physiologically; then find it was 'light'...

    an idea is what mankind can create.

    and in the beginning; there was light..

    the quesiton I see within that suggests

    'it depends on if you believe man or God?'

    well mankind 'created' all definitions of God.

    every word, every sound, every symbol, that is used to define God was created by people.

    God is all of existence; nature does not fib, man does!

    Keeping an eye on the truth offers each to know God, personally... not theoretically.

    Heck if you all know the name of God, then you have the math to back it up.
     
  8. painted wolf

    painted wolf Grey Muzzle

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    I don't know about all athiests but the ones I know have plenty of other reasons for not believing in God.

    As a thiest I have no problem with evolution. I'm rather fond of it and as my career as a scientist develops I plan on devoting more of my time to it's study.

    wa:do
     
  9. Father Heathen

    Father Heathen Veteran Member

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    Evolution and the existence of god are not mutually exclusive. However some religious folk think you cannot separate the concept of God from the ridicilous creation stories and other myths attributed to it.
     
    #49 Father Heathen, Jul 18, 2008
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2008
  10. Autodidact

    Autodidact Intentionally Blank

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    I beg to differ. What we're talking about is an experience that is not shared with anyone else. When they talk about their religious experience, it's always purely subjective. Usually it's a "sense of presence." If you were in the room with them, you would see, hear, smell, feel, absolutely nothing. It's exactly the same as a hallucination. I'm not saying it has no evidentiary value, but in all other areas we have a word for purely subjective experiences that are not shared with anyone else, and it's not "reality."

    btw, intelligence is no inoculation against irrationality.
     
    #50 Autodidact, Jul 18, 2008
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2008
  11. Apex

    Apex Somewhere Around Nothing

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    Are you saying every single religious person is, on some level, clinically insane?
     
  12. Autodidact

    Autodidact Intentionally Blank

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    No. I'm saying that using your personal internal subjective experience of "the Holy Spirit" or whatever is resting your belief on an insubstantial foundation.

    It would be more accurate to say that (certain forms of) insanity are an analogy for certain religious experiences and beliefs.
     
  13. Willamena

    Willamena Just me
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    I can see this clarification going nowhere fast. :) So I'll reply despite it.

    I disagree for a couple of reasons. One, the idea that "God" is an explanation (for natural phenomena) in no way hinders or is compromised by a natural explanation provided "God" is a supernatural aspect of that very same nature (as is held by some) for example, the idea that God "lives" or "resides", metaphorically speaking, in every event, every thing. And second, as I understand it naturalism ignores the supernatural aspect; it does nothing to disprove or even disuade it. It doesn't even attempt to do that, as it's happily discounting it.

    A non-naturalistic phenomena should properly never be discovered, since if it was it would nave no nature by which to know it.

    Is that true, what you said? Is it true that you think "determined to be true" is too vague? Is it trivial? The point at which we determine a thing to be true is the point at which it is "true to us", and since we're the ones doing the believing, that's the significant point.

    Somehow, I suspect that whatever "standard" apart from oneself that one uses to judge what is true is their standard because it's true to the individual who uses it.

    Again with the belief in the trivial. :)

    Newton was not wrong --his models still work and are still in use. Motion is still being measured relative to the rate of change in position of a body at a particular speed. It doesn't become untrue just because we have more accurate ways of measuring or more information available by which to formulate new equations. The truth of Newton's laws remains truth in its context.

    I won't comment on the truth of religions, though --that depends on what a person is holding about the religion to be true.
     
  14. sandandfoam

    sandandfoam Veteran Member

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    How do you determine insanity?
     
  15. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    Doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result. :D
     
  16. sandandfoam

    sandandfoam Veteran Member

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    Oops, I'm insane.
     
  17. Laughing Man

    Laughing Man 1337 |-|4(|<3R

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    Just a little FYI insanity is not a medical term it is a legal one.
    ALL HAIL LAUGHING MAN THE KEEPER OF USELESS KNOWLEDGE!!!
     
  18. Autodidact

    Autodidact Intentionally Blank

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    It's a broad category and probably not the best terminology. Here I'm talking about conditions in which the person perceives things that the rest of us don't, such as schizophrenic hallucinations and the like.
     
  19. Dirty Penguin

    Dirty Penguin Master Of Ceremony

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    Then you're hearing it from uninformed atheist then.....I have never heard my atheist friends say we come from monkeys.

    That's not the reason we say we don't believe in gods.
     
  20. Willamena

    Willamena Just me
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    The idea that we are not "mind" separate from the universe (as in Cartesian dualism), which has in it inherent the understanding that "I am" (one with) the universe. With that idea intact, the world-as-we-know-it is made of the forms by which we know it; whatever form it has apart from what we know (formlessness to us) is "God".
     
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