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Do you believe in God?
No, I'm Atheist: I believe there isn't a God
33%
 33%  [ 695 ]
No, I'm Agnostic: I feel there's no reason to believe in God existence or inexistence
25%
 25%  [ 528 ]
Yes, absolutely: I believe in one or more than one God
32%
 32%  [ 690 ]
I'm not sure / I don't know
8%
 8%  [ 181 ]
Total Votes : 2094

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Tuxisuau
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 9:17 am    Post subject: Do you believe in God existence? Reply with quote

I was reading http://www.kuro5hin.org discusion about discrimination of atheists and I thought... Why not a poll about believe in God?
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rac
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the purpose of this poll, what is the definition of God?
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 10:57 am    Post subject: With God I mean... Reply with quote

A superior divinity that is able to make things humans cannot.
A good coder falls outside that, for example (I call them Gods too, but isn't the poll purpose).
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 1:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At one time we couldn't create fire. I'm sure cavemen would think we were gods for many of the things that exist today.

You forgot the "Not convinced" option.
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Tuxisuau
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Added.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What is said in the article is pretty much true (in a general sense) in my experience. Since becoming an atheist, I've be downright shocked at the amount of biggotry directed at atheism by politicians and the media. I not even particularly outspoken (I think worrying about "in God we trust" on money is a major waste of time, for example). I think this phenomenon is probably unique to the US and a few fundamentalist regemes.

Welcome to America, where you're allowed to say what you want as long as it fits in the categories of "left, moderate or right" and believe in anything you want as long as it's a monotheistic Judeo-Christian God.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not only are atheists/agnosts discriminated against, but pretty much anyone non-christian.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm... My Religious Studies teacher said that Agnosticism is when one is unsure whether a God exists. Am I/my RS teacher wrong?
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
ag·nos·tic Pronunciation Key (g-nstk)
n.
1.
a. One who believes that it is impossible to know whether there is a God.
b. One who is skeptical about the existence of God but does not profess true atheism.
2. One who is doubtful or noncommittal about something.


adj.

1. Relating to or being an agnostic.
2. Doubtful or noncommittal: “Though I am agnostic on what terms to use, I have no doubt that human infants come with an enormous ‘acquisitiveness’ for discovering patterns” (William H. Calvin).
Quote:
ag·nos·ti·cism Pronunciation Key (g-nst-szm)
n.

1. The doctrine that certainty about first principles or absolute truth is unattainable and that only perceptual phenomena are objects of exact knowledge.
2. The belief that there can be no proof either that God exists or that God does not exist.
Perhaps there was a misunderstanding about what your teacher said. An agnostic believes that it CANNOT be proven one way or another. Someone who is unsure, is not agnostic. Though the definitions above are slightly misleading, I think the 'doubtful or noncomittal about something' part tends to be for non-God related topics.
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rac
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kanuslupus wrote:
Quote:
ag·nos·tic Pronunciation Key (g-nstk)
n.
1.
a. One who believes that it is impossible to know whether there is a God.
b. One who is skeptical about the existence of God but does not profess true atheism.
2. One who is doubtful or noncommittal about something.
Perhaps there was a misunderstanding about what your teacher said. An agnostic believes that it CANNOT be proven one way or another. Someone who is unsure, is not agnostic.

I think the teacher was using the word appropriately in sense (b) of your definition.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Could be, but the definition for agnosticism seems more accurate to me:
kanuslupus wrote:
2. The belief that there can be no proof either that God exists or that God does not exist.
For my dollar, I see this as the answer that is 'most accurate'.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the original definition of atheism is wrong. the definition can be derived from its stem words
a - not
theism - a belief in one or more supernatural beings

therefore atheism is to not have a belief in god
it is not as you stated "believe there isn't a god" which is foolish to say becuase its impossible to prove, its like saying santa clause doesn't exist, technically you can't prove it, but the evidence would highly suggest that he doesn't. I myself am an atheist and find people misuse the term often
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dufnutz wrote:
its like saying santa clause doesn't exist, technically you can't prove it
Point understood, though I'm not sure I'd agree.
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rac
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dufnutz wrote:
the original definition of atheism is wrong. the definition can be derived from its stem words
a - not
theism - a belief in one or more supernatural beings

Happy happy joy joy - time for Latin Language Lawyering. :) Isn't a- or ab- "away from, against"? So I read "atheism" as "against theism".

Quote:
"believe there isn't a god" which is foolish to say becuase its impossible to prove, its like saying santa clause doesn't exist, technically you can't prove it, but the evidence would highly suggest that he doesn't.

I don't agree that "belief there is a God" or "belief there isn't a God" are foolish, just because they are not provable. I don't think many theists attempt to prove God's existence deductively any more: Aristotle's unmoved mover and Descartes' cogito ergo sum are logically flawed. So with deductive proof out, we turn to inductive proof, such as attempting to prove the proposition "all ravens are black" by counting ravens. If we find one white one, we know that our proposition is false. Finding non-black non-ravens and black non-ravens are irrelevant. Find enough black ravens and you consider your proposition true by induction until further evidence suggests otherwise.

In the God case, the black ravens are unexplained miracles of nature, and to the believer they may convey corroboration of God's existence, and to the unbeliever they may not. So interpretation of the evidence is not as simple as counting black ravens.

I maintain that the theist believes the proposition "God exists" is true, and the atheist believes that that proposition is false. Neither side does (or can) make the claim that it's provable one way or the other. For the theist, belief transcends logic and sensory experience.

Tuxisuau wrote:
A superior divinity that is able to make things humans cannot.

Do sufficiently technologically advanced aliens count, then? That might render the proposition theoretically provable.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 7:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How does buddhism fit into this scheme? If I'm not mistaken buddhism doesn't really promote any gods, but I wouln't call them atheists either. Or maybe they are and I'm just falling into the atheist==evil trap that society promotes.

*sigh* Now I know why my parents told me to stay out of conversations on religion and politics. :D
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

earlclick wrote:
How does buddhism fit into this scheme? If I'm not mistaken buddhism doesn't really promote any gods, but I wouln't call them atheists either. Or maybe they are and I'm just falling into the atheist==evil trap that society promotes.

*sigh* Now I know why my parents told me to stay out of conversations on religion and politics. :D


I was taught (by a different RS teacher), that Buddhists are atheist - they do not believe in God. However, they do believe that there is something more than life.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 1:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rac wrote:

I don't agree that "belief there is a God" or "belief there isn't a God" are foolish, just because they are not provable. I don't think many theists attempt to prove God's existence deductively any more: Aristotle's unmoved mover and Descartes' cogito ergo sum are logically flawed. So with deductive proof out, we turn to inductive proof, such as attempting to prove the proposition "all ravens are black" by counting ravens. If we find one white one, we know that our proposition is false. Finding non-black non-ravens and black non-ravens are irrelevant. Find enough black ravens and you consider your proposition true by induction until further evidence suggests otherwise.

In the God case, the black ravens are unexplained miracles of nature, and to the believer they may convey corroboration of God's existence, and to the unbeliever they may not. So interpretation of the evidence is not as simple as counting black ravens.

I maintain that the theist believes the proposition "God exists" is true, and the atheist believes that that proposition is false. Neither side does (or can) make the claim that it's provable one way or the other. For the theist, belief transcends logic and sensory experience.


I see what you are saying, but even inductive reasoning (at least good inductive reasoning) needs to have evidence to back it up. Like your raven example is a good one. But theists have been unable (in my experience) to present good evidence repeatable evidence. this brings believing in god down to the equivalent of believing in unicorns. If I went around saying i believed in unicorns people would think im nutty because they dont see the evidence of a unicorn, but why is it with god we can through the idea of evidence and scientific method out the window? I apply the scientific method to life to gain an understanding of the universe unlike most theists that accept a myth and use that to base their understanding of the univeres without much question. which is indeed foolish as i showed you with the unicorn.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dufnutz wrote:
But theists have been unable (in my experience) to present good evidence repeatable evidence.
You either have faith, or you do not. No scientific evidence is needed. To expect it, is foolish under a faith based system.

Quote:
this brings believing in god down to the equivalent of believing in unicorns.
I'm not sure you can stretch it that far. Do you have any reasonable documentation that suggests Unicorn's do exist? I'm not talking about some Natonal Enquirer article either.

Quote:
If I went around saying i believed in unicorns people would think im nutty because they dont see the evidence of a unicorn,
As well if you said you were something other than a main-stream religion. Tell people you believe in Druidism, they'll probably look at you funny too.

Quote:
but why is it with god we can through the idea of evidence and scientific method out the window?
Faith, and if you ask me, dogmatic brainwashing.

Quote:
I apply the scientific method to life to gain an understanding of the universe
How do you explain the Big Bang? What caused it, what existed before that? These are the arguements that suggest to me there must be something, though I'm not convinced. Until I start seeing some resurrections, I'll probably always remain unconvinced.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kanuslupus wrote:
How do you explain the Big Bang? What caused it, what existed before that? These are the arguements that suggest to me there must be something, though I'm not convinced. Until I start seeing some resurrections, I'll probably always remain unconvinced.


just because something is unexplainable doesn't mean that it should automatically be justified by God or anything else for that matter. I understand that I can't explain everything and nobody should suggest that they can either.

Also i suppose you are familar with Occams Razor. By adding God into the equation you only add another varialbe and make the situation more complex.

If you say God came before the big bang then what came before god? god's god? if you follow that path you end up in an infinite regression.

EDIT: Please let me know if yo I'm offending you that is in no way my intention, i simply want to contribute to this interesting thread and i take no offense to your counter arguements so if there is a problem with what i post i'll stop.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Never heard of Occams Razor, but I think it comes to anyone that really thinks about it. Science cannot yet prove it, neither does religion. Science is faith in what you've been told is true as well.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I refer to the energy force of the universe, and everything that exists as "god" for a lack of a better name. Its not quite the omnipotent omnescient being, but everything and everyone.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 2:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kanuslupus wrote:
Never heard of Occams Razor, but I think it comes to anyone that really thinks about it. Science cannot yet prove it, neither does religion. Science is faith in what you've been told is true as well.


I dont know where you went to school but for me science has been bult from the ground up. I learn new topics that build off the old ones and then use a laboratory to back them up or read a text book which explains other scientists expiriments.

also i think you are confusing faith with inductive reasoning in this situation. We understand science to be true because of repeated experiments that have the same results. If the results change then the understood truth changes. any good scientist will tell you they dont know the absolute truth becuase its completely based on inductive reasoning. faith on the other hand doesn't use good inductive reasoning. One will instead accept a truth based on maybe a few instances of nonrepeatable anecdotal evidence or a single book from a single point of view. Most theists believe they know an absolute truth, that is, they know god.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 3:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dufnutz wrote:
We understand science to be true because of repeated experiments that have the same results. If the results change then the understood truth changes.

You can't do repeated experiments on the origin of the universe, upon which ("from the ground up") everything else is built.

What started the Big Bang? Where did the matter and energy come from? Where did the three dimensional void come from? How about the laws of physics? Where did time come from? Mathematics? Remember: humans are not creating physics or mathematics, we are merely discovering them.

Agree or disagree: in any given system there is an element that has no explainable origin. If you disagree, provide support for your argument.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Continued pedantic discussions on the proveability of any God is pointless if you ask me. On the other hand, if someone is interested in finding out why a person has faith, that is a different issue.

Tchuss
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 3:37 am    Post subject: Stimulating Energy Reply with quote

For me, God is the Stimulating Energy.

A religion is a set of rituals, which sometimes help to accept hard to understand matters. But more often religion is used to influence the other.
The Stimulating Energy is in your self, you can't ask for it, you can just give it.
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