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Does it seem like a lot of theists rationalizations invite religious pluralism?

#1DarkContractorPosted 3/3/2013 9:57:55 AM
I notice people end up asking "what if this had happened" or "what if this is the case" in terms of things like contradictions, morality, etc. etc.

Well, if you do that (basically asking what if scenarios you have no evidence for until a falsifier is no longer necessarily a falsifier) , I feel like you hurl religious pluralism right in your face. I don't see it as any different as going to the top of Mt. Olympiad, concluding that Zeus is not real (which would technically be an equivocation fallacy) and then a believer reminding me that Zeus could have just easily moved.

the common pattern I notice, however, is these what ifs never include a testable claim, evidence, and are usually unfalsifiable. they never include a pattern of something we can observe in the present day ("if we do this, God will do this. If we do this, and God doesn't do this, then God is not real" for example).
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#2TheRealJiraiyaPosted 3/3/2013 10:01:04 AM
While the same reasoning could be used for any other deity, a lot of deities and their theologies are mutually exclusive, so the existence of one would be one of the only disproofs of the existence of others, at least as they are believed to exist.

Also, your argument only holds if these things are WHY they believe in the deity. More often than not they have other reasons for belief, and this is just to nullify an attempted disproof.
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#3DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/3/2013 10:15:08 AM
While the same reasoning could be used for any other deity, a lot of deities and their theologies are mutually exclusive, so the existence of one would be one of the only disproofs of the existence of others, at least as they are believed to exist.


Do we have proof of the existence of one?

Also, your argument only holds if these things are WHY they believe in the deity. More often than not they have other reasons for belief, and this is just to nullify an attempted disproof.


Yes, but their reasons are generally non-conclusive and these rationalizations are intrinsic to their reasons; they cannot separate the two. they dare not even consider other possibilities (or plausibilities, since we're talking unevidenced scenarios here) because if they do then their believes start to crumble. remember when you and I debated on Steam and I mentioned there are a few alleged accounts of Jesus' childhood? we weren't sure on how historically valid they were, of course, but the fact is as a Christian you automatically have to dismiss those as invalid, since they have accounts of Jesus sinning. If you don't automatically adhere to that axiom, your believes crumble. Also, even if a good argument comes up for a God, even if it seems perfect (and I've yet to see one that seems close to perfect), you cannot assume it is airtight in the face of falsifying scenarios (even though the Bible does teach one to hold the Light in such a manner). it's straightforward intellectual dishonesty.
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An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. PSN: MrPillow92 Steam: MrPillowtheGreat
#4TheRealJiraiyaPosted 3/3/2013 10:21:21 AM
DarkContractor posted...
While the same reasoning could be used for any other deity, a lot of deities and their theologies are mutually exclusive, so the existence of one would be one of the only disproofs of the existence of others, at least as they are believed to exist.


Do we have proof of the existence of one?


One can have other evidences that far surpass your personal standards that are nontransferable - personal experiences, for example. The issue of whether their primary reasons are legitimate seems like a different discussion, however.

But the point is that if one deity's definition necessitates that he is the only deity around, using arguments that could hold for other deities doesnt indicate pluralism, it indicates uncertainty, unless the believer has another reason to believe, which as I said below, they probably do.

Also, your argument only holds if these things are WHY they believe in the deity. More often than not they have other reasons for belief, and this is just to nullify an attempted disproof.


Yes, but their reasons are generally non-conclusive and these rationalizations are intrinsic to their reasons; they cannot separate the two. they dare not even consider other possibilities (or plausibilities, since we're talking unevidenced scenarios here) because if they do then their believes start to crumble. remember when you and I debated on Steam and I mentioned there are a few alleged accounts of Jesus' childhood? we weren't sure on how historically valid they were, of course, but the fact is as a Christian you automatically have to dismiss those as invalid, since they have accounts of Jesus sinning. If you don't automatically adhere to that axiom, your believes crumble. Also, even if a good argument comes up for a God, even if it seems perfect (and I've yet to see one that seems close to perfect), you cannot assume it is airtight in the face of falsifying scenarios (even though the Bible does teach one to hold the Light in such a manner). it's straightforward intellectual dishonesty.


Ah, but that isnt why I dismissed them. In most of the cases of these "gnostic gospels" there is no reason to believe they were written earlier than, at the most, the 4th century AD. I think that the idea that we dismiss them solely because they dont agree with them is itself flawed, and also takes certain assumptions when approaching the topic - such as the idea that they were dismissed solely for their teachings, and were around during this time period to be considered to begin with.

There are plenty of logical reasons to dismiss that argument.
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#5DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/3/2013 10:27:57 AM
One can have other evidences that far surpass your personal standards that are nontransferable - personal experiences, for example. The issue of whether their primary reasons are legitimate seems like a different discussion, however.


My main issue with personal experiences is that, in a sense, they defy Biblical teachings. It's about faith, faith is what gets you closer to God, when you suddenly have proof it actually in a weird, nonlogical way further implies the invalidity of the Bible. that's one of the reasons I'm very skeptical of any conclusive anecdote of God.

But the point is that if one deity's definition necessitates that he is the only deity around, using arguments that could hold for other deities doesnt indicate pluralism, it indicates uncertainty, unless the believer has another reason to believe, which as I said below, they probably do.


Defining what you like doesn't matter at all. What matters what is and isn't.

Ah, but that isnt why I dismissed them. In most of the cases of these "gnostic gospels" there is no reason to believe they were written earlier than, at the most, the 4th century AD. I think that the idea that we dismiss them solely because they dont agree with them is itself flawed, and also takes certain assumptions when approaching the topic - such as the idea that they were dismissed solely for their teachings, and were around during this time period to be considered to begin with.

There are plenty of logical reasons to dismiss that argument.


that was an example meant to illustrate the relationship, hence I said regardless of validity. So please respond to the rest.
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#6TheRealJiraiyaPosted 3/3/2013 10:32:21 AM
DarkContractor posted...
One can have other evidences that far surpass your personal standards that are nontransferable - personal experiences, for example. The issue of whether their primary reasons are legitimate seems like a different discussion, however.


My main issue with personal experiences is that, in a sense, they defy Biblical teachings. It's about faith, faith is what gets you closer to God, when you suddenly have proof it actually in a weird, nonlogical way further implies the invalidity of the Bible. that's one of the reasons I'm very skeptical of any conclusive anecdote of God.


God surely did provide personal experiences to some. Look at Paul.

But the point is that if one deity's definition necessitates that he is the only deity around, using arguments that could hold for other deities doesnt indicate pluralism, it indicates uncertainty, unless the believer has another reason to believe, which as I said below, they probably do.


Defining what you like doesn't matter at all. What matters what is and isn't.


I feel like I am not sure where you are coming from ITT. I am rebutting you as though you are coming from the angle that these theistic defenses indicate pluralism - that appears to be what you have said. This idea only holds if:
1. The argument is actually a viable or intended defense of the existence of the specific deity, rather than a rebuttal intended to nullify an attack
2. The specific deity is not mutually exclusive with others.

The second one is important. While this argument might be valid (although it isnt), the fact that it could apply to other deities doesnt lead to religious pluralism, it leads to uncertainty.

Ill respond to the rest of your earlier post, sec.
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -Plato
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#7TheRealJiraiyaPosted 3/3/2013 10:38:51 AM
DarkContractor posted...
Also, your argument only holds if these things are WHY they believe in the deity. More often than not they have other reasons for belief, and this is just to nullify an attempted disproof.


Yes, but their reasons are generally non-conclusive and these rationalizations are intrinsic to their reasons; they cannot separate the two. they dare not even consider other possibilities (or plausibilities, since we're talking unevidenced scenarios here) because if they do then their believes start to crumble. remember when you and I debated on Steam and I mentioned there are a few alleged accounts of Jesus' childhood? we weren't sure on how historically valid they were, of course, but the fact is as a Christian you automatically have to dismiss those as invalid, since they have accounts of Jesus sinning. If you don't automatically adhere to that axiom, your believes crumble. Also, even if a good argument comes up for a God, even if it seems perfect (and I've yet to see one that seems close to perfect), you cannot assume it is airtight in the face of falsifying scenarios (even though the Bible does teach one to hold the Light in such a manner). it's straightforward intellectual dishonesty.


We can agree that there are certainly cases for which your criticism is valid, but our agreement hinges on "generally". Again, if you are trying to make an argument against Christianity, it seems to me youll need something better than pointing out that the reasoning of most Christians (Id go further and say most PEOPLE) is flawed in general.

As for the bit about how, as a Christian, I automatically have to dismiss those as invalid, I disagree. I see no reason why I should not explore such possibilities open-mindedly, nor do I see why it would cause my faith to crumble unless they are necessarily valid, which you said is unknown. There is nothing intellectually dishonest about my approach to these things because I did research them, even more after our discussion, and came back with my faith unshaken.

I dont need a 100% perfect argument for God - I follow what seems more rationably plausible. Its a horse race. And as long as Christianity stays ahead, however small the lead may be, Ill be a Christian. And if I had an argument that was really good and seemed perfect, that would actually help firm up my faith a lot. And I dont see anything intellectually dishonest about that.

Again, Im a bit hazy on where you are trying to get. If you are saying a Christian is NECESSARILY as you are describing, I think I have demonstrated that to be false. If you are saying many Christians are generally as you are describing, I would amend it slightly to say many people dont think rationally when it comes to their beliefs on many subjects, and that isnt just a Christian problem.
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#8DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/3/2013 10:40:03 AM
God surely did provide personal experiences to some. Look at Paul.


the Bible contradict itself? No......

I feel like I am not sure where you are coming from ITT. I am rebutting you as though you are coming from the angle that these theistic defenses indicate pluralism - that appears to be what you have said. This idea only holds if:
1. The argument is actually a viable or intended defense of the existence of the specific deity, rather than a rebuttal intended to nullify an attack
2. The specific deity is not mutually exclusive with others.

The second one is important. While this argument might be valid (although it isnt), the fact that it could apply to other deities doesnt lead to religious pluralism, it leads to uncertainty.

Ill respond to the rest of your earlier post, sec.



1. But you keep operating on "if this happened, then probably the rest". Keywords are 'if' and 'probably'. It's simply not true; they are rationalizations you have no evidence for at all. Assuming your premise is untouchable and can be used to expose the truth in a different scenario is pretty faulty. It's an equivocation fallacy, a rationalization.

2. you do understand pluralism right? It's not a polytheistic belief, it's the issue of discerning which mono or polytheistic belief is correct, if any.
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#9DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/3/2013 10:49:59 AM
We can agree that there are certainly cases for which your criticism is valid, but our agreement hinges on "generally". Again, if you are trying to make an argument against Christianity, it seems to me youll need something better than pointing out that the reasoning of most Christians (Id go further and say most PEOPLE) is flawed in general.


Are you telling me you have an unflawed logic for things like the contradiction of Judas's death? Let's hear it.

As for the bit about how, as a Christian, I automatically have to dismiss those as invalid, I disagree. I see no reason why I should not explore such possibilities open-mindedly, nor do I see why it would cause my faith to crumble unless they are necessarily valid, which you said is unknown. There is nothing intellectually dishonest about my approach to these things because I did research them, even more after our discussion, and came back with my faith unshaken.


As a Christian, yes you have to dismiss those. Doesn't mean you will, or that will be the basis of your dismissal, but you the two are mutually exclusive.

I dont need a 100% perfect argument for God - I follow what seems more rationably plausible. Its a horse race. And as long as Christianity stays ahead, however small the lead may be, Ill be a Christian. And if I had an argument that was really good and seemed perfect, that would actually help firm up my faith a lot. And I dont see anything intellectually dishonest about that.


Yet you actively try to convert people. Also, that's a hasty conclusion. textbook logical fallacy. And I would hardly begin to think Biblical morality appears as more plausible. But in fear of inviting distracting dogmatism into this topic, we'll stray away from that.

Again, Im a bit hazy on where you are trying to get. If you are saying a Christian is NECESSARILY as you are describing, I think I have demonstrated that to be false. If you are saying many Christians are generally as you are describing, I would amend it slightly to say many people dont think rationally when it comes to their beliefs on many subjects, and that isnt just a Christian problem.


I would love for you to reconcile the Judas contradiction without rationalizing.
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#10TheRealJiraiyaPosted 3/3/2013 11:09:01 AM
DarkContractor posted...
God surely did provide personal experiences to some. Look at Paul.


the Bible contradict itself? No......


Or maybe youre just interpreting it incorrectly? Holy smokes, dont get all fundie on me. "It disproves my interpretation therefore the Bible is in contradiction because I couldnt possibly be wrong!".

I feel like I am not sure where you are coming from ITT. I am rebutting you as though you are coming from the angle that these theistic defenses indicate pluralism - that appears to be what you have said. This idea only holds if:
1. The argument is actually a viable or intended defense of the existence of the specific deity, rather than a rebuttal intended to nullify an attack
2. The specific deity is not mutually exclusive with others.

The second one is important. While this argument might be valid (although it isnt), the fact that it could apply to other deities doesnt lead to religious pluralism, it leads to uncertainty.

Ill respond to the rest of your earlier post, sec.



1. But you keep operating on "if this happened, then probably the rest". Keywords are 'if' and 'probably'. It's simply not true; they are rationalizations you have no evidence for at all. Assuming your premise is untouchable and can be used to expose the truth in a different scenario is pretty faulty. It's an equivocation fallacy, a rationalization.

2. you do understand pluralism right? It's not a polytheistic belief, it's the issue of discerning which mono or polytheistic belief is correct, if any.


1. How have I assumed my premise is untouchable? I havent. I have put forward possible reasonings to demonstrate that the problems you have pointed out, the valid ones anyway, are not necessary for a Christian or necessarily supported by your arguments. It is very possible I am wrong. But I wont be disproven by a rebuttal to an atheistic argument being pointed out to apply to other deities. I know that already. Heck, religions trade rebuttals around all the time. Im happy to admit I am wrong, the day you can demonstrate I am wrong.

2. Im a bit hazy on the definition of pluralism, I skimmed like the first 3 sentences of Wikipedia and guessed from the context in your post XD
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