Author Topic: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?  (Read 9169 times)

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Offline Lithp

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #30 on: June 07, 2013, 01:39:50 am »
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You don't truly actually have evidence though. You haven't actually been to seen him. You are just assuming he/she is real because of things you've seen and experienced in the past.

There is a difference between knowing the exact individual who made it, & knowing that it is a human production. Hence why I don't claim to know who personally built the computer--also because it was likely multiple people. With the universe, there is nothing I can point to that indicates what kind of person may have created it, if there was more than one, or if that thing was a "person" in any sense of the word.

There are, however, explanations for its existence that seem to not necessitate a creator, so I tentatively say that it did not have one.

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I could also go see God, it's just a different way of going about it.

An important difference, I would say. Any way of allegedly contacting God (such as prayer) does not work for any other person or object in existence, so why should it work in this case? Especially because studies do not find a significant difference between prayer & the placebo effect. Also, how does this explain people who deconvert & then say, "You know, looking back, I get the impression that God was never really there, or if he was, he wasn't listening"?

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What I don't understand is why you can't follow that same logic to the conclusion that something like the human eye is less likely to have just came together on its own than a keyboard.

Because that is not the same logic. With the keyboard, I have an object I am examining (keys), & attempting to determine if they are of natural OR man-made origin.

I ALSO have an item that I KNOW is of man-made origin (the alphabet).

Since the keys include the alphabet, in fact the FULL alphabet, with punctuation, I can conclude with nearly 100% certainty that this is a man-made item. The uncertainty continues to diminish dramatically when I combine this with the other evidence.

With the eyeball, if I try to determine whether it is natural or designed, all I've got is that it is made of human cells. There isn't really any kind of symbol or trait I can point to that says, "This is a thing that I already know this dude named God makes, therefore, this was designed by him." It's not about being "complicated," it's about what I already know from other experiences.

Good examples of something being "complicated" but not designed--the Rorschach ink blot tests. Those can result in some pretty complex patterns, but are really just randomly deposited blots of ink. Also, ice crystals. What appear to have intricate patterns are really just the way that the water randomly froze.

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The differences between the complicated structure of the human eye and an HP laptop are astronomical.

Why, yes, they are.

Offline davedan

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #31 on: June 07, 2013, 02:17:01 am »
That you would be closed minded to even the possibility that you could be wrong, as I find is the case for most fundamentalist Christians.

But then again, I could still be wrong. What if there IS a god, but not the god of Christianity (like a deistic god, for example)? Would there be any evidence that could convince you that Christianity is incorrect (or at least make you seriously question it)?
Would you be open minded enough to possibility that your computer was not made by anyone, but rather just came into existence?

Also I'd more willing to to believe another god exists than I would to believe that none exists. I guess that's why I could never be an atheist.

If everything has to be made by something else, then what made God?

After all god that made the universe has to be astronomically more complex than the universe he created so on that logic must require a creator. And so on.

That is actually one of the reasons I find the Gnostic story of creation appealing. Essentially everything is God, but God is sick, which is why it has started to break apart, the biggest split being the Demiurge who created this material universe. One day God will heal itself and it everything will dissappear into transcendentalism.

Utter shit but at least, interesting shit.

Offline Captain Jack Harkness

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #32 on: June 07, 2013, 03:23:40 am »
Miracles
Stories about miracles, especially from ancient sources, don't convince me, but if a few unambiguous miracles were captured on tape and witnessed and corroborated by many people independently, that might be enough. Or if I witnessed something and other witnesses verified it.

So what counts as an "unambiguous miracle," anyway?  What would count as a "miracle," and how do you know you wouldn't look for another explanation?
My friend's blog.  Check it out!

I blame/credit The Doctor with inspiring my name change.

Offline JohnE

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #33 on: June 07, 2013, 03:29:15 am »
I'm not exactly sure what would count, but it would have to be something I was pretty darn sure couldn't be faked. The sun standing still in the sky for three days and then continuing as normal would be a good one. Whatever it was, I would definitely look for other explanations before accepting it as supernatural.

Offline Lithp

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #34 on: June 07, 2013, 08:16:16 am »
Now that I think about it, "before accepting it as supernatural" is a strange term. There are yet things that are unknown to science, but I don't consider them magical in nature. The Bloop or the Wow Signal, for instance.

Offline Flying Mint Bunny!

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #35 on: June 07, 2013, 10:15:35 am »
Nothing could convince me that there is a benevolent god. I think the existence of certain genetic diseases prove that there isn't one.

I think it's possible that there is a god who is completely indifferent towards humans, and thinks of us in the same way we think of ants.

Any miracles could have non supernatural causes like aliens with vastly superior technology.

Epileptic people can have religious experiences caused by seizures, so I would probably put anything like that down to having some kind of problem with my brain.

The power of prayer doesn't work, so that's out.

I don't think anything could convince me really.

Offline Shane for Wax

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #36 on: June 07, 2013, 01:27:58 pm »
TL;DR- I wouldn't convert to Christianity of any stripe. I would be Tony Stark in the presence of Thor.

Cracking snarky jokes about his speech, cloak and looks?

But of course. *late reply*

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Offline JohnE

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #37 on: June 07, 2013, 02:32:04 pm »
Now that I think about it, "before accepting it as supernatural" is a strange term. There are yet things that are unknown to science, but I don't consider them magical in nature. The Bloop or the Wow Signal, for instance.
Yeah, supernatural wasn't the best word, but I'm not sure what the best word would be.

Offline Sigmaleph

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #38 on: June 07, 2013, 03:54:17 pm »
To me a universe without God would be in utter chaos because there would be no one molding and shaping it. We would not exist, at least not in the complicated way we do now. I think everything would at least be simple minded and dull. There would be no structure, there would be no laws.

This is the sort of thing I was getting at, actually.

Suppose, then, that you found a convincing philosophical argument that the lawfulness of nature can be accounted for without God. Would that give you serious doubts about theism, or at the very least, make you more open to other ideas?


(I'm not implying I have such an argument, it's a hypothetical question)
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Offline Star Cluster

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #39 on: June 07, 2013, 05:04:48 pm »
To me a universe without God would be in utter chaos because there would be no one molding and shaping it. We would not exist, at least not in the complicated way we do now. I think everything would at least be simple minded and dull. There would be no structure, there would be no laws.

This is the sort of thing I was getting at, actually.

Suppose, then, that you found a convincing philosophical argument that the lawfulness of nature can be accounted for without God. Would that give you serious doubts about theism, or at the very least, make you more open to other ideas?


(I'm not implying I have such an argument, it's a hypothetical question)

As I've said before in other threads and as I say in my sig, it is the very order and complexity of the universe that convinces me there is no god(s).  With very few exceptions, the universe works under a very strict set of criteria that we call the Laws of Physics.  What many people fail, or refuse, to understand is that the Laws of Physics are not like the laws set down by men.  Laws which men set down can be broken.  The Laws of Physics cannot (or at least we have not found a way to yet.)  They are not actually  laws, but a natural pattern that we have observed in which objects behave in certain conditions, not just once, but all the time. 

Take objects in orbit around the sun, for example.  We know that small objects, called asteroids, can by gravitational forces, clump together.  The more of them that clump together, the more gravitational force the growing object exerts.  When they are small, they can be pretty much any shape, just depending on how they strike each other, since they lack a strong gravitational field.  But if enough of them get together to gain sufficient size they when become a dwarf planet or maybe even a planet.  If this happens, the object will have enough mass to cause itself to be spherical.  We know this to be true because we can see it.  Mathematical formulas not only confirm it, but demand it.  A god is not required. 

Now if you want to get my attention and at least give me pause to the possibility of any god, show me a cubed planet.  I'll wait.
The heavens convince me there is no god.

Religion is an insult to human dignity. Without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.--Steven Weinberg

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I don't know why people compare George Carlin to God. He's great and all, but he's no George Carlin.-Anon.

Offline Sigmaleph

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #40 on: June 07, 2013, 05:59:09 pm »
With very few exceptions, the universe works under a very strict set of criteria that we call the Laws of Physics.
By "exceptions", d'you mean things that the current understanding of physics doesn't yet explain, or that violate the (not fully known) True Laws of Physics?
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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #41 on: June 07, 2013, 07:25:20 pm »
With very few exceptions, the universe works under a very strict set of criteria that we call the Laws of Physics.
By "exceptions", d'you mean things that the current understanding of physics doesn't yet explain, or that violate the (not fully known) True Laws of Physics?

He clearly means magic. Like how does David Copperfield make that elephant disappear? I don't know!  :P

Offline Star Cluster

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #42 on: June 07, 2013, 10:25:36 pm »
With very few exceptions, the universe works under a very strict set of criteria that we call the Laws of Physics.
By "exceptions", d'you mean things that the current understanding of physics doesn't yet explain, or that violate the (not fully known) True Laws of Physics?

Mainly what I had in mind were black holes where the laws of physics break down completely.  There are a few yet to be fully explained phenomena, however, there are mathematical formulas that predict something should be there and have in most cases, named them.  It's just that those particles or forces haven't been fully proven yet.  Dark matter, dark energy, and string theory are examples of this. 
The heavens convince me there is no god.

Religion is an insult to human dignity. Without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.--Steven Weinberg

Religion can never reform mankind because religion is slavery--Robert G. Ingersoll

I don't know why people compare George Carlin to God. He's great and all, but he's no George Carlin.-Anon.

Offline Morgenleoht

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #43 on: June 08, 2013, 12:05:57 am »
TL;DR- I wouldn't convert to Christianity of any stripe. I would be Tony Stark in the presence of Thor.

Cracking snarky jokes about his speech, cloak and looks?

But of course. *late reply*

If it were Thor/the other Norse Gods, I'd be "Fuck yeah!"

If it were the Abrahamic God, I would be "Fuck you."
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Offline Witchyjoshy

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Re: What Would it Take to Convert/Deconvert You?
« Reply #44 on: June 08, 2013, 02:10:47 am »
Hum let's see...

What would it take me to convert to Christianity?  Brainwashing.  Because Christianity is to Judaism what Mormonism is to Christianity.

What would it take for me me to convert to Judaism?
A prophet personally sent by God of some sort coming around, bitch-slapping every fundie Christian for worshipping a book over God himself, bitch-slapping missionaries for trying to manipulate people into converting by denying food and medicine until people convert, and bitch-slapping every abrahamic leader to pay for their crimes of destroying information about other people's religions, as well as historical documents period.

What would it take for me to convert to, say, any other belief system?

A personal experience where I feel led to Woden and Thunar and that it is a non-abusive relationship, unlike the abusive relationship that fundamentalist Christians have with their so-called "loving" father.

What would it take for me to convert to a dragon worshiping religion?

...It merely existing ;D

Okay that last one was in jest.
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