Because I didn’t take enough flack from the Vox Day quote debacle, I now give you the most awesome poster ever constructed:
Category Archives: Humor
The Best Way to Decide the Existence of God
I think that this is the best way for atheists and Christians to finally settle our differences.
Meme for My Side
How to Miss the Point: A Guide to Dimwitted Discourse
Sarah Geis from Think About These Things has an awesome post that every debater must read. It is a primer on how to argue Internet-style:
People have valued reasoned, fair disagreements and good listening skills for far too long. It is high time we dispense with those boring and outdated formalities! After all, why respect the laws of logic when you can enjoy the adventure of following your own passions? When you get the point, you can only either agree or disagree. How boring! On the other hand, when you miss the point, you open up a fallacy-filled wonderland where conversation and emotions are set free to frolic! If you wish to dispense with the authoritarian laws of logic (which care nothing about you!) and transcend the boundaries of social courtesy, then here are some suggestions for you to try on your entirely subjective journey. These primarily apply to written arguments, but can also apply to listening to a spoken argument.
My personal favorite:
12. Remember that no one has the right to criticize things you like.
Decide right now that all criticisms of anything you like are immediately invalid. After all, we know that things and people that we like are perfect.
Thanks for a wonderful post, Sarah! Keep up the good work.
The Parable of the Year 4500 [PARODY]
A warning to the sarcastically impaired… this post is meant in jest, but it raises a valid point that bears addressing by atheists of OUR time. Before it’s even a question from speed readers or skimmers, I am not de-converting.It has been horrid living under the Christian oppression for my entire life. I was only a Christian because my family raised me so, and only remained so because it was easy in a primarily Christian society.
But I have, at last, thrown off the shackles of Christian oppression and joined the Brights of society, in knowing the truth that there is no God.
I now post my anti-testimony so that others may find the strength to resist the mindvirus of Christianity. But let me start with a little history…
Christians in 4500 point to two incontrovertible “miracles” proving the existence of their god. The first is the so-called Resurrection, when their zombie lord allegedly rose from the dead.
The second allegedly happened five days after an anonymous writer of what they used to call a “blog” wrote this:
If one evening, every star in the sky began to move in unison, and converge to form an illuminated three dimensional Latin Cross that filled the entire void, leaving the rest of the sky utterly black, devoid of any stars or planets; with Jesus’ face superimposed upon it, speaking in all languages at once its expectations of us, and for good measure it simultaneously rained human blood across the planet; and this all lasted for 24 hrs so that every person on Earth could view the event for themselves … I’d buy it. I’d become the worlds greatest Christian. Or if it were equally strong evidence of some other god being, I’d be first in line to at least apologize to it for my denial and happily sacrifice to it, grovel at its hooves, or otherwise demonstrate my reverence.. (source)
Five days after that, it happened. Millions of eyewitnesses saw it, and thousands posted accounts online and newspapers carried stories and the media frenzy was born.
And so was Christian oppression. Because who could argue with an actual appearance of God?
But I echo the arguments of many critics of this so-called “event” of mid-2012. I now do not believe it happened. The facile replies of the Christian so-called apologists lack so much luster as to be incredible. Even fanciful.
So, here are my questions. . .
First, Why did God wait so long? Allegedly, your “savior” rose from the dead in the year 33. Yet, this fictitious event didn’t occur until 2012 — almost 2000 years later. It seems to me that if God truly cared about humanity, he would never let questions about his existence happen, since you go to hell if you don’t believe in him.
So he wouldn’t have waited. He would have made the first great miracle, the Resurrection, more obvious. The Resurrection, in fact, is all he should have needed to prove that Jesus was who he said he was. People would believe then.
The fact that your god needed a second miracle proves he is inept and not worthy of worship.
Second, Where’s the video of this event? Christian apologists claim that as a supernatural event, this couldn’t have been put on video. Therefore, all of the video from the time that shows a typical, non-rearranged night sky is what we’d expect to see.
Well, it seems to me that if God expected this miracle to convince everyone of his existence, that he’d leave more than just a few eyewitnesses. I know that it is claimed the “entire planet” saw this, but that isn’t good enough. The Resurrection was supposedly seen by over 500 people who were still alive at the time of writing, but I can’t question them now, either. Therefore, both miracles suffer from lack of adequate attestation. Which leads us to …
Why do you expect me to take this on eyewitness testimony alone? Eyewitnesses are notoriously unreliable. I can’t question any of these people today, and supposedly there’s no actual video of this event. The hundreds of blog posts that still exist are no proof, since the Church could have put those together and claimed they were authentic.
I bet they even destroyed the counter-testimony, the people of the era who said this event never happened. There was bound to be lots of those, as I understand atheist activism was popular on the Internet of 2012. Where are all of the atheists who would have decried this obvious Christian propaganda?
Destroyed by the Church, that’s where.
So that’s my case. That is why I now stand with the atheists. Go ahead, theists. Prove me wrong.
In other words, given the space of time, people will find old ways to disbelieve new miracles. All of these arguments are repackaged versions of anti-Resurrection arguments. Nice try, Atheist Camel. Believe because of the Resurrection, or move along. It is the only sign you’re getting.
A friend on Facebook posted the following graphic:
Notice that I can’t actually win? The question at the end is loaded.
If I explain why 1-6 are fallacious, I’ve committed #7 and therefore have a hoax religion.
But I can’t show that Christianity is different from other religions without providing justifications for the first six, which means I (once again) have a hoax religion.
Well, shucks… I lose. But I wonder:
Does the fact that atheists pass this graphic uncritically from one to the next make them guilty of holding a regular groupthink meeting to reinforce belief? Of course not, they can justify that by saying no money is collected and they aren’t meeting in person.
Wait a minute…
The preceding post was meant as satire and not as a serious argument. Please don’t tell me I’m committing a tu quoque fallacy with this post. I already know that. That’s why I’m tagging it as “humor.”
Controversy: The Vox Day Quote
Updated to clean up some awkward phrasing (9/21/11 @ 8:30am EDT)
Alex has had some strong words to say regarding my recent posting of a Vox Day quote and labeling it as the best quote ever.
He said the quote was ignorant and stupid. I told everyone that it was meant humorously and to please lighten up. Then, he said posting the quote makes me look stupid:
Oh, I always have fun, however that shouldn’t justify stupidity. And it’s a bit scary that the quote is supposed to be awesome in a theistic perspective; you’re embracing unsubstantiated and stupid claims, said in a poor way, using words he doesn’t understand. And you think that is awesome? No, Cory, it makes you look stupid next to it, and hopefully that isn’t what you intended.
And then he tries to shame me into investigating why by bringing up my recent declaration that I seek truth.
But, I don’t think the quote is stupid or that it makes me look stupid. I’m going to examine why that is, but first, I would like to whine.
Why do I have to justify everything I do to atheists? None of them justify a single argument, even when I’ve asked. All I ever seem to get is the whole burden-of-proof-is-on-me-the-theist talking point. Fine. But in a court case, the defense still presents an argument. So man up and stop asserting stuff with no justification.
The reason I whined about that is because that is all Alex does. Specifically, between two comments in that post, he asserts that the quote:
- is a remarkably stupid example of argument from ignorance
- demonstrates poor understanding of the concepts touched on
- makes unsubstantiated assertions
- misuses “esoteric”
- states its point poorly
None of his own claims are substantiated, yet I’m about to expound on why I think this is a great quote. Fine, let’s get this over with. Read the rest of this entry
A Day at the Office
I thought that an occasional short story might illustrate certain points better than a straight article. It’ll be good practice for that novel I’m hoping to write.
Rob dreads coming to work, but he has goals and ambitions. First, moving out of his dreary apartment into a house. Then, marrying Rachel. At some point, a nicer car would be great.
Wedding expenses and honeymoon expenses, as well as down payments for houses, require money. Unfortunately, they require more money than this pencil-pushing low-level administrator’s position pays, but that’s what Rob’s night classes are for.
It really wasn’t so much the repetitive job that gets to Rob as Terry. Every office has someone that is into something weird and puts it out there. Terry is the guy that does that here. His weird thing: atheism. Read the rest of this entry
My 3-year Old Thinks Deeper than Some Atheists
It sounds crazy, but I think my three-year old daughter actually thinks more deeply than the average atheist. She understands a distinction in the divine essence that many atheists fail to see.
I, and other apologists like me, out-of-hand reject statements like, “You’re an atheist to literally thousands of gods. I’m only an atheist to one more god than you!” I’ve discussed some reasons here. One of the most compelling reasons to reject such a statement is the very ontology of the gods under discussion.
Polytheism usually starts with two gods, a male and a female. The male generally represents Heaven or the Sky, while the female represents Earth. Immediately, we see that these beings are tied to a material reality, with what Dungeons & Dragons supplements (such as Deities and Demigods) refer to as a “portfolio.” The portfolio is the area of supreme power for that deity.
Sky and Earth then have children, which become the initial gods of the pantheon. In Greek mythology, these children are Cronus and Rhea. Cronus then usurps Sky’s (Uranus) power and becomes king of the entire universe. This represents another common element of polytheism–the supreme god, always dwelling in or characterized by the Sky, is defeated or rendered impotent.
Cronus and Rhea then gave birth to Zeus, Poseidon, Hades, Demeter, Hestia, and Hera. None of these gods are the causal agent of the force they control. Zeus controls thunder, and his lightning bolt was fashioned to harness the already extant power. Same with the remaining siblings: Poseidon controls the water, Hades shepherds departed souls, Demeter manages the seasons, Hestia the household, and Hera blesses marriage.
The universe, when discussed, is usually already there. It is never “created” by any god, and the gods master extant powers rather than creating them. Further, the gods are always seen as finite, as having a definite beginning and it always seems possible that they could have an end, in either death or imprisonment.
Contrast that with God, the transcendent creator of the universe. There was nothing before God, and there will be nothing after God. He is eternal, and exists on the pure necessity of his own nature. All that we see, he spoke into being. Light through the darkness, material from immaterial, land out of water, vegetation on the land, fish in the sea, then creatures on the land. He commanded it all into existence; he didn’t harness what already existed.
This concept is weighty, but not so much that Ashleigh couldn’t grasp it, and she’s only three! The atheists I deal with are much older than that, yet seem unable to grasp this concept.
How do I know Ashleigh gets it? Because the other day, I hear her declare to my son, Gabriel, and anyone else in earshot, that she was the “god of weather.” I told her that she shouldn’t claim to be God, as that is very wrong indeed.
She replied, “I’m not God, daddy. I’m only god of weather!”
Indicating she understands the fundamental difference between claiming to be the ultimate creator, and a powerful entity with a limited portfolio (such as “weather”). Maybe I’m reading too much into her comment, but it seems to me that she gets a truth that escapes our atheist friends who make the “I’m an atheist to one more god” claim. Maybe she’ll follow in my footsteps into Christian apologetics.
Obsessing Over a Cool Feature
WordPress has added the ability to reprint tweets in a really cool way. Some readers have probably noted that I have done that with Monica’s tweets when I wish to highlight something that was said on Twitter.
Since I absolutely love this feature, and I said two things on Twitter that I would like to reiterate here, I will now use this feature shamelessly:
Bask in my pithy wisdom. And, follow me on Twitter. I’ll follow you back, and I’ll love you forever. Well, at least I’ll follow you back!