A Christian who fancies himself as an intellectual named labreuer is being taken to task by articulett. Here is what she recently wrote, which deserves a post of it's own. I'm glad she's on our side, the correct side!
It's not that I don't believe in invisible things-- music is invisible... so is justice... and atoms and magnetism and electricity... and lots of things were invisible before we had microscopes... but they are all distinguishable from nothing... But beings mean consciousness and consciousness means brains-- it doesn't really mean anything to speak of immaterial consciousness... it would be like "music" without matter (sound can't travel in a vacuum)... just because we can imagine such a thing and want such a thing to exist doesn't make it real. So "god" (like souls) tends to be a nebulous word that people shift to mean what they need it to mean for the time being... they don't give it any real properties so there is not chance to disprove it. It's like Scientology's Thetans... they don't exist outside the belief of Scientologists... the same goes for Xenu. I can't prove this... but I can say that if these things WERE real there should be some evidence that would distinguish them from fantasy. If there is none-- then it makes sense to conclude they're fantasy. No scientist need to concern herself with such "things"-- the same goes for god, demons, and ghosts.........
Don't reconstruct my reasoning-- let me sum it up yet again: If you want to know what is real, then you need to have a method to distinguish the real stuff from the imaginary stuff... a method which shows that X-rays are real... but Thetans are not (or, rather, are "indistinguishable" from mythological beings.) If you don't have such a method, then you are as likely to be wrong about your supernatural beliefs as the Scientologist.
Get it? It's easy. How do you know X-rays are real and Xenu is not?
What does it mean to say something is a "being" when it has no qualities associated with all beings that we can all exist-- namely, living people and perhaps some other animals with brains. What would an immaterial being be? How would it be different from a fairy or an immaterial flower? Why should someone believe in such things?
I like this Woman: Am I Delusional?
I like how the problems with her faith is starting to sink in... but she still believes it's true! She has no method for finding out she's wrong. She thinks Scientology is good the way you think Christianity is good. She is not able to see that she could be as wrong as she'd think you are. You have no better message than she does. Nobody who believes in some supernatural things or some immaterial beings has a valid method for distinguishing the real from the imaginary. If there was such a method, science would be using it. We can't prove she's wrong... but that doesn't mean she's right. All believers in invisible beings are in the same boat. They could be as wrong as her, but they'd have no way of knowing. The Outsider Test for Faith (OTF) is a means of finding out. You want us to respect your supernatural beliefs or consider they might be true, but you can't give us a reason as to why we should take those beliefs more seriously than you take hers. Even if some immaterial beings were real (whatever that means), your method of finding out which ones were is no better than hers!
When things are real and our senses can't detect them... then we build machines that can-- microscopes, X-ray machines, infrared cameras, etc. Those who are interested in the truth don't claim that there are "immaterial beings" that are beyond scientific detection (yet, they, somehow have detected them!). It's as crazy when Christians do it as when Scientologists do it. Repeat this until you understand it-- "if science cannot demonstrate that something exists.... then there is no valid reason to think that anyone else has either-- not the Scientologists... nor the Muslims... nor you." People invent gods and the like to explain that which they don't understand. If there were any real evidence for Thetans, science would be all over it... and the same for 3-in-1 gods, real devils, real spirits and the like. But at some point humans have to grow up and say "magic isn't real." Not your brand... nor anyone else's. People can believe what they want, but until you can bring the kind of evidence to the table that you'd require to believe, say, Scientology-- then don't expect me or atheists or scientists to care about your supernatural beliefs more than you care about Scientology. This is such a simple concept, but Christians seem to imagine that their magical beliefs are so much more respectable than all those others they reject. Your supernatural beliefs are as useless for uncovering truths and predicting new evidence as Scientology, Islam, Mormonism, Greek Myths, Witchcraft, etc. Pretending I am saying something else doesn't change this fact.
I don't have to prove or disprove that "our senses only ever detect particles and fields" as you said. It's a straw man. I just have to know that you don't have access to magical sources of information on the subject. There is no evidence of any divine beings that want to be "believed in" so I can dismiss your conjecture on the subject as readily as you can dismiss Joseph Smiths' claims. There is no evidence of divine truths and lots of evidence that people are prone to delusions in this department-- some even kill their kids because they imagine god wants them to. http://www.trutv.com/library/c... You have no method of addressing this-- you believe in a god who asks people to kill their kid as a test... a god who speaks to people and gives "signs"-- a god who takes kids straight to heaven to live happily ever after (whereas had they grown up to be gay or atheist they might suffer eternal torment). Once you say one unfalsifiable claim could be true-- you open the door for all of them to be true. If your wife is missing then demons absconding with her is as good as any unfalsifiable claim. So is "aliens ate her". So is "god poofed her to heaven... he needed another angel". But none of that really tells you what happened to your wife. This kind of shit only flies when people are trying to keep the faith.
Because god is an immaterial being and we have no real idea what that even means, then I do think aliens (that you confused for god) would be a better explanation-- but there would be evidence if aliens were visiting earth and evidence of a habitable planet within traveling distance... and there isn't evidence for either. It would be a far better bet to go for a more prosaic explanation-- the same as you would with a Scientologist who had some freaky experience she imagined only Scientology could explain. "I don't know" is a much more honest answer than "I do know-- it was the god I just happen to believe in!" Now if this god happened to grow an amputees leg back or rain food upon starving African children, then I might change my mind. But someone looking to believe settles on far more nebulous and far less impressive evidence-- Mormons regale each other with their "testimonies" of how they know it's all true.
I'm pretty sure that if any real being with superpowers existed AND that being wanted to be "believed in"-- they would be damn sure to distinguish themselves from a delusion. They would have no one to blame but themselves if they were disappointed. This goes for Xenu and 3-in-1 Jesus-gods. It goes more so for gods who created everything... really who have they got to blame but themselves?? And it goes even more for omniscient gods. I think you have to lie to yourself hugely to imagine a god who wanted to be believed in would create a world like this. I feel like I'm trying to describe what a real Santa would be like... a real Santa wouldn't need to manipulate me into belief... he could just be visible.. with visible flying reindeer. I'd just expect the kind of evidence we have for real things... just like you'd want real evidence if you were to believe in Scientology or reincarnation or magic spells.
If a real creator god wanted me to believe he gave us the bible-- then I think you can rest assured that he could convince me... he's supposed to be able to create universes, right? Of course I suppose I could ask you why you imagine a god wrote the bible when it could be a demon who wants you to believe these ghastly tells are "moral'-- or maybe you are part of an alien experimentation... or you have a Thetan infestation. Or maybe your religion is made up entirely by just like every myth superstition and religion ever. That's where the evidence lies. That's what the people with the highest IQs, best educations, and scientific literacy and increasingly believing... they are letting go o their magical beliefs... they are not going to waste their lives on the superstitions of their ancestors.
Look up the world falsifiable-- you don't know what it means. It means that if something is wrong it can be shown to be wrong. Gods are falsifiable... if there are any real ones, all they need to do is manifest and the belief that there are no gods is falsified. Get it? If I say there are no purple cows, then a single purple cow proves me wrong. The same goes for fairies or invisible penguins. If we can distinguish these things from imaginary things then the claim that they don't exist has been falsified. Just because something is falsifiable-- like all scientific theories including gravity... doesn't mean that it has been falsified. And it certainly doesn't mean it's not true. But all unfalsifiable things are non-scientific-- from immaterial flowers, to matrix scenarios, to immaterial beings. We can't prove they aren't true-- but it is not scientific to think they are. Produce scientific evidence for one immaterial being and you've falsified the claim that they don't exist. This should be easy if any are real. If you can know about them, then scientists should be able to study them and learn more. If the emperor is wearing magical clothes that only the chosen can see-- then you can falsify my claim that he is naked by providing evidence to the contrary. Maybe you could ask everyone who thinks they see clothes what exactly they see and if it matches, it's a step towards falsification. But peoples' god beliefs don't match up. You can't ever prove that they don't exist.... just like you can't prove Zeus never existed...nor can you prove that you are not possessed with demons. That's why the burden of proof is on the person trying to garner belief. It's not your job to prove you are not demon infested (since you can't), it would be up to a person who believed such a thing to convince others of their claim. And this is the case with all invisible beings-- even the 3-in-1 god you imagine yourself saved for believing in. Your religion has made you very very stupid when it comes to burden of proof. You have no more valid evidence of your god than you have that you are NOT infested with demons. You have no more evidence of your god than you do of Xenu. And yet... in your last sentence you seem to think it's logical to manipulate me by pointing out that I have no evidence for my nonbelief in your sky fairy while seeming to forget that I have no evidence that you are not possessed either. I have no evidence that you are not a thief. I have no evidence that Xenu is real. I have no evidence for souls. I have no evidence for witches... nor do I have evidence that witches don't exist. That's why I trust that real things will be distinguishable from imaginary things via scientific testing... unlike the Scientology girl rain dancers, ghost believers, Muslims, Mormons, and you! The manipulations you are using are telling... but they are being used just as successfully on those with conflicting faiths... and that is why they are not a real method for getting at the truth.
You and the Scientology chick are still free to waste your lives... er worship as you see fit.
I just want you to understand that the outsider sees your religion the same way. Whatever evidence you would need to accept Scientology as true is the same sort of evidence I would need to accept your magical beliefs. Why should we lower our standards for Christianity just because you have? How hard is that for you to understand? To us, you are as delusional as they are to you-- and you can give no valid reason as to why we should think otherwise. Damn you are thick. You keep reading things I never said and totally missing what I did. And then I'm stuck with your straw man. But, to be fair, if the Scientologist was he re, I'm sure she'd have a similar response to the OTF. You'd think she was delusional... she'd think you were delusional-- and as far as the evidence was concerned, you're BOTH delusional.Someday when she can reveal herself without fear of repercussions, she should end up being one of the most popular speakers on the atheistic circuit. I look forward with hopes I can live long enough to see that day!
You think the Scientologists are wrong the way they think you are wrong. You think the Muslims are wrong, they think you are going to hell. You think the Mormons have been fooled, they think they have been specially chosen. You believe in Jesus-god, souls and Satan-- Scientologists believe in Thetans, Xenu, and reincarnation. Ergo-- you all imagine that you have found a way to tell true supernatural claims from false ones. You think your magic is the true magic and that theirs is the false one. They think that the opposite is true. Religious people believe in "objective morality" but they don't agree on what it is... they believe in goo d and evil.. but again they don't agree. They believe their book is a moral guide but they don't agree on what anything means.
But I'm tired of explaining and re-explaining things to you. I have come to the conclusion that you are very young. I'm tired of your tangents, straw men, hearing things that weren't said, and repeatedly mishearing what was said. I'm tired of your manipulations. I can't even keep up with your points (have you made one?) Are you disgruntled with the OTF because it can't be applied to freedom and power and all the other things that aren't related to religious faith? Or do you think your religion passes it and so it "wins"? Why would you think I care what conclusions you came to on the subject more than you care what conclusions a Scientologist would come to.
I just want you Christians to understand that --contrary to what your indoctrinators told you-- atheists don't have impossible standards when it comes to god and such... we have the exact same sort of standards that YOU would need to believe Scientology or Islam or some other supernatural belief system. If nothing else... let that part of the OTF sink in. And then go away until you can provide that type of evidence. Otherwise you just sound crazy-- the way the Scientologist sounds to you . We don't care what brand of Christian you are any more than you care what brand of Islam someone belongs to-- we just don't find your supernatural beliefs to be good or true in the very same way you don't think Mormonism is good or true.