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Zossima

This argument is the basis of intelligent design. I've never understood how somebody gets from here ("it must have come from somewhere") to the idea that it came from the christian god.

Maria

Great as always, Greta! (is it a sign, you think - woo woo music ;-) - that I all the time misspell Greta as Great, and have to change it?)

Reading the first comment over there... How is it even possible that anyone can read an article that is so clear and still reply like that? I mean... just read that first comment!

"Nature helps. Go commune with some trees. Try to figure out what water says when it is talking. When you can hear the rocks speaking, god is easy to listen to. Have you ever listened to loud waves at the ocean? They have a lot to say."

Someone definitely hit the "Jesus Bong" a bit too much!

Chad Groft

Zossima, it's because they're thinking backwards. We're trying to find answers to our questions. They've already got an answer, and are desperately trying to find the question.

Joshua Zelinsky

Very well put. However, "begs the question" does not mean implicitly raises a question although it is frequently misused this way. Begging the question is a form of assuming the premise you want to prove. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beg_the_question

Eclectic

Zossima: Word. the origins of the big bang are indeed a mystery, but it is just a finite (albeit very large) amount of matter and energy in a small space, a long (but finite) time ago.

Everything proceeds from there according to rules we understand and have observed.

Why exactly is this less plausible than the universe being started by a conscious being with several infinite attributes who gets pissy about leavened bread and cares passionately about my sex life?

ckitching

If something cannot come from nothing, someone ought to tell that to virtual particles. Those pesky little buggers are constantly appearing out of nothing, and usually disappearing back into nothing.

It's positively disrespectful!

Account Deleted

Man, alternet commenters...Ugh. So awful. Honestly, I prefer Christian and Muslim fundies to the horrible, generic mysticism of "liberal" believers. "No man, like, you're too immature to just listen to the waves on the beach. THAT'S God." Or atheists who constantly tell other atheists to pipe down and not make waves.

David Moisan

Another name for pious liberal believers: Left-Wing Fundamentalists.

I say this as the worst sort of atheist liberal. :) In my state of Massachusetts, I, like Greta, have seen a lot of woo-woo people and have always felt marvel and disappointment that they adopt the tropes of right-wing fundies under different labels.

Valhar2000

David, it has always been thus. The political spectrum is not a line, but a circle: if you go far enough one way, you meet the kooks on the other kooks on the other side.

Frozen Summers

All I'm getting is "Page Not Found"

Even when I try to click thru from the main page on alternet.

:-(

Melliferax

Also getting the Page Not Found error. :S

Bruce Gorton

Posted by: David Moisan | March 01, 2010 at 09:25 PM

They are like the rightwing fundementalists, except with a far greater tendency to spout off about CS Lewis.

Frankly I wouldn't take a Children's book authors opinion of the mental stability of a rabbi we mainly know about through the writings of his followers as a great indicator that Jesus wasn't a loony.

And that is without even getting into the fact that Jesus could have just been wrong, or a composite character, or entirely fictional.

Yet there he is, constantly brought up as some sort of vindication.

"Yeah, you have various scientists, but we have a guy who wrote children's books."

vel

really bad children's books that were a cut and paste of his magic soul book.

Cactus Wren

Great one. The currently popular iteration of "everything has a cause" is called the Kalam Cosmological Argument, and it's usually rendered as, "Everything that begins to exist has a cause. The universe began to exist. Therefore, the universe has a cause."

See, they've very tidily eliminated the "but where did God come from?" question even before it can be asked. God didn't begin to exist, the argument runs, so he didn't need a cause.

It must be handy to have an argument that comes with its special pleading already preinstalled.

Greta Christina

Yeah, that's a good one, Cactus. What I like about it is how blatantly it assumes the things it's trying to prove: that the universe had a beginning (yes, yes, the Big Bang, but we don't have any idea what, if anything, there was before that)... and that God always existed.

Also, as people keep pointing out, there are some weird quantum entities whose names I can't remember that do wink in and out of existence. And there's no evidence of the hand of a creator in their existence. So there.

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