Thursday, April 19, 2007

God is Awesome, YTMND Style

I found these on YTMND and just couldn't resist linking them here:

Our God is an Awesome God YTMND

Thank God for This YMNTD

On a similar note, YouTube banned Francois Tremblay's "Our God is an Awesome God" video. So I hosted it myself on another server and created the embed code for it. This video is too awesome not to keep online:

17 comments:

beepbeepitsme said...

Very powerful video.

Wade said...

just wanted to let you know - I can see the video in IE (after installing ActiveX plugin), but not in firefox. I did look for plugins to do so, and those that I found either didn't help (Windows Media Player plugin) or were advised against downloading and required some extra scripting (ActiveX).

first time I've had something work better in IE than in firefox...

Maybe someone knows what the problem is and how to fix it - I don't - but in any case, I just wanted to let you and any potentially confused readers know about the issue. I just get a blank space where the video should be.

Aaron Kinney said...

Thanks for the info Wade,

Yes you will receive warnings about the activex scripting. Im surprised that firefox wont work at all with the embed html code. I basically duplicated the embed code that youtube provides and merely changed the urls to the file location on my server instead.

I prefer IE over FF, and Im a computer geek with a BS in Computer Information Systems. Some call me crazy, but I never did like using FF.

Ninjas 4 Jebus said...

This is awesome! It's too bad I want to actually keep those of my friends still bound up in this Christian nonsense, otherwise I would send them this and insist they watch it. Kudos!

James said...

There are some compromises you can make for ffox add-ons:

MediaPlayerConnectivity will take an embedded video and pop up the video player. Acceptable, I suppose.

MediaWrap almost works! It's disappointing, because it doesn't show tracking buttons, nor does it appear to respect the size given by the embed tag.

Those are the two options I found for playing unsupported embedded media within ffox. The first one works better--that is, you can actually see the video.

breakerslion said...

Amazing. Truly an awesome video. I downloaded some of these same images a couple of weeks ago to make a slide show of John 3:16, with the added line , "Big...Fat...F_ing...Deal."

ecualegacy said...

Sorry, but I'm not all that impressed with the video. It is the same old argument by outrage. You're throwing stones at God, but consider this. 1) If God and heaven are real, then fairness demands you get in line behind the souls of the malformed children. They're fine now of course, and too busy playing along the banks of the Crystal Sea. You'll have to wait a while for your turn. 2) If God and heaven are not real, then what are you outraged at and how do you justify that outrage in the first place?

Aaron Kinney said...

ecualegacy,

Sorry, but I'm not all that impressed with the video. It is the same old argument by outrage. You're throwing stones at God, but consider this. 1) If God and heaven are real, then fairness demands you get in line behind the souls of the malformed children.

True, and I support the children anyway. But thats not what this is about. This is about looking at the consequences of having a creator who does such things deliberately.

They're fine now of course, and too busy playing along the banks of the Crystal Sea. You'll have to wait a while for your turn.

What? Are you referring to heaven? Paradise in the afterlife does not undo fact that God created them that way in this life.

2) If God and heaven are not real, then what are you outraged at and how do you justify that outrage in the first place?

There is no "moral outrage" in a godless universe over genetic or birth defects per se, just like there is no "moral outrage" over a tsunami in the South Pacific in a godless universe. In both cases, they were caused naturally.

The moral outrage over disasters and genetic defects, for their mere existence, occurs only when a conscious entity, not a natural phenomena, is responsible for them.

Of course, one can express moral outrage over humans who dont excercise prenatal health or disaster preparedness, and the like.

Also, Godlessness in the face of disasters and deformities offers more hope, for if these are merely natural phenomena, then they can in thoery be understood, controlled, and corrected in principle.

But if these things are a part of Gods will, then why should we think that anything we puny humans do to try to stop it will have any effect?

ecualegacy said...

I'll start at the end of Aaron Kinney's comment and work back.

Also, Godlessness in the face of disasters and deformities offers more hope, for if these are merely natural phenomena, then they can in thoery be understood, controlled, and corrected in principle.

But if these things are a part of Gods will, then why should we think that anything we puny humans do to try to stop it will have any effect?


You seem to be making a value judgement here. You are essentially asking "Which universe is better?"

1) A universe where God lets bad things to happen to innocent babies(for whatever reason) but offers eternal comfort to them.

or

2)A universe without God that still has the same sufferings but no hope of something better beyond this life.

That last statement about us being helpless against God when he lets people be sick doesn't make sense to me. The Bible commands Christians to do good. Curing and preventing disease would seem to fall under that imperative. Both Christian and Atheist doctors are making good progress too. But we can never expect them to cure death. So we still need God to save us (from death if not just from sin) no matter what we may think of His role in our suffering.

What? Are you referring to heaven? Paradise in the afterlife does not undo [the] fact that God created them that way in this life.

I will not argue that the ends justify the means. However, I would have thought anyone could agree that even a century of pain really isn't worth comparing to an eternity of happiness. To cry out when pain overcomes us is a valid complaint. From an eternal standpoint, however, to say God is wrong for letting us suffer for a short time strikes of whining.

In any case, you are objecting to God's legitimate right to let or even cause us to suffer this ordeal called life, in the hope that we will freely choose to love Him and one another without coercion.

But if you want to persist in that line of thinking, consider this. People want children to love and be loved by. Yet we know those children will suffer in life. Why then do we object to God's right to have children in this world but let ourselves off the hook?

Aaron Kinney said...

ecualegacy said...

You seem to be making a value judgement here. You are essentially asking "Which universe is better?"

Damn skippy.

1) A universe where God lets bad things to happen to innocent babies(for whatever reason) but offers eternal comfort to them.

Eternal anything is boring as all hell, as James Joyce so eloquently explained.

or

2)A universe without God that still has the same sufferings but no hope of something better beyond this life.


At least in a natural universe you dont have the pain of thinking that a conscious entity deliberately created you with only 1 arm, or being premanently attached at the forehead to your twin sibling, or born with a heart outside your own chest, etc...

Also, it is not established that any "life after death" (now theres a contradictory term) could be enjoyable. And why would someone want "something better beyond this life" anyway? Wouldnt that imply a kind of "giving up" on this life, which we already know has so much joy and learning to offer? Why shortchange the specialness of this existence by spending your whole life looking towards another which, incidentally, you cannot prove that it even exists much less would be better than this life.

Dont forget that HELL is another alleged afterlife possibility. For all you know, you could worship Jesus all your life only to find yourself in Muslim Hell for worshipping the wrong superstition.

That last statement about us being helpless against God when he lets people be sick doesn't make sense to me. The Bible commands Christians to do good.

And to kill disrespectful children, and to be a glutton for abuse, among other things.

Curing and preventing disease would seem to fall under that imperative.

Curing and preventing the very diseases that GOD HIMSELF saw fit to impart onto us as birth? That makes lots of sense... :(

Both Christian and Atheist doctors are making good progress too. But we can never expect them to cure death. So we still need God to save us (from death if not just from sin) no matter what we may think of His role in our suffering.

News flash ecualegacy: God and Christianity saves NOBODY from death. People still die, and Christians definitely die all the time. And you did a bit of question begging too. Save from Sin? It has not been established that humans are burdened with a moral debt to a cosmic creator for actions that were committed by other individuals millennia before they were even conceived.

I will not argue that the ends justify the means. However, I would have thought anyone could agree that even a century of pain really isn't worth comparing to an eternity of happiness. To cry out when pain overcomes us is a valid complaint. From an eternal standpoint, however, to say God is wrong for letting us suffer for a short time strikes of whining.

Eternal happiness? After life? Moral debt (sin) for actions not committed by you? All of these concepts here are contradictions in themselves. Will you tell me about married bachelors and 4 cornered circles next?

In any case, you are objecting to God's legitimate right to let or even cause us to suffer this ordeal called life, in the hope that we will freely choose to love Him and one another without coercion.

Assuming that God existed, yes I am certainly objecting to God's master/slave moral structure. Even if God were a "legitimate" master, I am still a slave, and the moral framework inherent within my perspective cannot help but to be outraged at my slave status and God's master status.

Why is it that you find a master/slave moral system so comforting and preferable? What part of it do you like the most? It doesnt seem too appealing to me.

But if you want to persist in that line of thinking, consider this. People want children to love and be loved by. Yet we know those children will suffer in life. Why then do we object to God's right to have children in this world but let ourselves off the hook?

Im only objecting to God's "right" to create children with inherent defects, and his propensity to do it so often. Im wagging my finger at his master/slave moral structure. And Im doing so because, while the concept of a cosmic creator who dishes out suffering is disturbing enough, it disturbs me more to sit idly by and not say anything about it. I couldnt live with myself if I did not.

But really, what Im doing at this blog is laying out my reasons for believing that God doesnt exist and that the afterlife is imaginary. In this particular post, I am pointing out the moral consequences of a universe that would be created and administered by a God.

In response to the "letting off the hook" comment. I want to state that I dont let humans "off the hook." In the topic of birth defects, most of the time they are beyond the humans control. Sometimes a birth defect is due to irresponsible actions by the mother or father during pregnancy. Those people deserve condemnation for their careless actions, and they rightly receive such condemnation.

But what of God and His being condemned for creating such birth defects? Why is it that if a pregnant mother drinks and smokes, she will be shunned or even puinished, but when God creates birth defects we are supposed to embrace his actions?

Look at it this way:

Scenario 1) A mother acts responsibly during a pregnancy, and gives birth to a superhealthy, supersmart, superstrong, and superbeautiful daughter. The community celebrates.

Scenario 2) A mother drinks and smokes during a pregnancy, and gives birth to a superdeformed, superretarded, and superugly daughter. The community rejects and punishes her (and rightly so!).

Scenario 3) God blesses a mothers pregnancy and creates a supersmart, superbeautiful, superhealthy baby girl. The faithful praise God in worship for His wisdom.

Scenario 4) God curses a mothers pregnancy and creates a superdeformed, superugly,. superstupid defective baby girl. In this scenario, should the faithful praise God in worship for His actions, or should He be condemned just like the smoking and drinking mother?

Fuck that. Im gonna hold God to the same standard that I hold any self-aware and semi-intelligent being. If I can hold a mother to some moral standard based on my own inherent moral framework, then it would be High Treason upon my own sensibilities to refuse to do it to a being of greater intellect and power than the mother.

Hopefully this makes some amount of sense to you?

Aaron Kinney said...

ecualegacy,

One more thing I wanted to share with you. It is an older post I wrote about the concept of eternity ni the afterlife. I wrote it back in 2005 and I think it offers some very good insight into the absurdity of the concept of "eternal happiness."

The title of the post is Spend Spend Spend.

ecualegacy said...

So much to respond to! Where do you find the time to write so much?!

Eternal anything is boring as all hell, as James Joyce so eloquently explained

It is arrogant to think we know all about what is/is not possible for God. Yes, there are some things we can be reasonably sure about. For instance, God cannot violate the laws of logic and make square circles. Nor can He impinge upon free will and still say that we freely love Him.

However, if God is truly the Lord of the Universe, then he must be smart enough to make a heaven worth spending eternity in (where boredom isn’t a problem) or else it stands to reason that He would have gone mad already. If you argue he’s already mad, then why isn’t the universe even nuttier than it is, eh?

Granted, we can't know heaven is real, but He has promised it to us in the Bible. Wouldn't you want to live in such a place if it could exist? Wouldn't you be happy for everyone else who chose it? Or will you turn away from that gift and mock those who hope for it? Do you have so little imagination? Are you really content to play only with the fleeting pleasures of this life for a little while then fall into oblivion?

I tell you the truth; no one commits suicide because they are happy, but because they want to end suffering. Jesus on the other hand, offers the way to heaven. Will you accept what he has to offer: eternal meaning, satisfaction, intimacy, and love?

Also, it is not established that any "life after death" (now there’s a contradictory term) could be enjoyable.

You’re straw-manning definitions. Death in the Biblical sense is not the end of existence, but merely the end for this body. You get better at the resurrection as you well know. Of course the existence of a satisfying heaven’s can’t be proved, but why hope for anything less?

And why would someone want "something better beyond this life" anyway? Wouldn’t that imply a kind of "giving up" on this life, which we already know has so much joy and learning to offer? Why shortchange the specialness of this existence by spending your whole life looking towards another which, incidentally, you cannot prove that it even exists much less would be better than this life.

This is a very bizarre argument frequently used by atheists, even those like you who should know better. Christians are meant to enjoy this life if they can! The very commands God sets down are designed to protect us from self-harm and bring fulfillment to our lives. To the wretched poor we are to give from our abundance. To the sick we are to give comfort and help. With the happy we are to rejoice. With the grieving we are to weep. And what glory it is to God to be curious and eager to explore the world he has made for us! God wants us to enjoy His blessings! Why else did he give Job a double back to him after his ordeal? Why else does the Proverb say, “Rejoice in the wife of your youth…may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love.” Shall I go on?

I expect you are stumbling at where God tells you to behave yourself in ways you think are unreasonable. Every good thing has its proper place and time.

Don’t forget that HELL is another alleged afterlife possibility. For all you know, you could worship Jesus all your life only to find yourself in Muslim Hell for worshipping the wrong superstition.

We’re packing so much into one post! Here is the question of “Which is the True Religion?” To answer that in a pinch, I use this test.

1) Is the religion even of note in this age? You’d expect the Greek Pantheon to be making mischief if they were real and staying true to their natures, particularly Loki.

2) Is the religion offering eternal salvation? Without that, the question of life, the universe, and everything eventually becomes moot. So that knocks out of the running atheism, Hinduism, and Buddhism, to name a few.

3) Do the motives of the religion’s founders seem trustworthy? I’ve noticed that cult leaders tend to invent religions for three reasons: more sex, money, and power. The sex lives of Mohammad and Joseph Smith speak for themselves. They both amassed plenty of money and a following. Mohammad became a king. Smith didn’t make it that far, but not for a lack of trying.

What about the Christian founders: the apostles? Sex for them meant one man, one woman for life. They worked for their livings even while preaching. Paul gave up pre-imminence among the Pharisees when he converted and was persecuted for it.

And to kill disrespectful children,

The command to kill disobedient children was for the Jews of ancient Israel, not the Christians. Besides, are you really presuming to judge a people for following divine commands when they saw 10 plagues o’er the land, waters parted, pillars of fire, columns of smoke, manna from heaven, water from rocks, the evil swallowed by the earth, Jericho’s walls fall, the lame impossibly healed, the blind given back sight, prophecy’s fulfilled and my personal favorite: the dead raised to life?

and to be a glutton for abuse, among other things.

Abuse? Like listening you ridicule the Christian hope for the resurrection?

Curing and preventing the very diseases that GOD HIMSELF saw fit to impart onto us as birth? That makes lots of sense... :(

What you aren’t willing to acknowledge is that it simply isn’t our place to judge God. The proper response is to do what we can for those children.

God and Christianity saves NOBODY from death.
This is a strawman. The word “Death” takes on multiple meanings in the Christian world-view. In one context it is merely the death of the body, not the person. That doesn’t stop death from being feared as an undesirable separating of loved ones. Why else did Mary cry when Lazarus died? Years are still a long time to wait to be reunited at the Ressurection. More importantly, however, Death in the NT often refers to spiritual death: of being in a lost state and eternally separated from God. Based on some of the comments I’ve read elsewhere in your blogsite, I assumed you grew up in a church and would know this.

Save from Sin? It has not been established that humans are burdened with a moral debt to a cosmic creator for actions that were committed by other individuals millennia before they were even conceived.

This is a topic I’ll tackle later. It is getting late now.

Eternal happiness? After life? Moral debt (sin) for actions not committed by you?

Who argued that we are morally indebted from before birth? You must come from a church background that taught inherited sin. I don't believe the Bible supports that doctrine. Quoting Ezekiel, "The soul who sins dies."

All of these concepts here are contradictions in themselves. Will you tell me about married bachelors and 4 cornered circles next?

See my comments above about how God must be logically consistent. Where things don’t appear logical, we must first ask ourselves if we are missing a perspective that only God is privileged by His nature to have.

Assuming that God existed, yes I am certainly objecting to God's master/slave moral structure. Even if God were a "legitimate" master, I am still a slave, and the moral framework inherent within my perspective cannot help but to be outraged at my slave status and God's master status.

Why do you assume your moral framework is correct? By what standard do you measure right and wrong?

Why is it that you find a master/slave moral system so comforting and preferable? What part of it do you like the most? It doesn’t seem too appealing to me.

We are each a slave to someone. The question is, which master will lead you to the Truth?

You serve yourself. Can you save yourself from oblivion? No. Are you a perfect judge of right and wrong? No. By what standard do you judge God? Are you the moral lawgiver? I don’t think so.

Try this then. Serve God. Go back to the Bible and see what he tells the Christian about how to act. Does anything there seem like a bad idea: don’t lie, cheat, steal, run around on your spouse, etc.?

I’m only objecting to God's "right" to create children with inherent defects, and his propensity to do it so often. I’m wagging my finger at his master/slave moral structure. And I’m doing so because, while the concept of a cosmic creator who dishes out suffering is disturbing enough, it disturbs me more to sit idly by and not say anything about it. I couldn’t live with myself if I did not.

Why? What moral imperative can you point to by which you can say God is wrong to do as he pleases?

In this particular post, I am pointing out the moral consequences of a universe that would be created and administered by a God.

You are constantly accusing God, but offering nothing more than visceral revulsion as your standard of judgment so far as I can tell. If you are going to play the game of “If you don’t like it, then it must be wrong,” how then do you justify vaccinating children? They hate needles. If you say that it is for a higher purpose, then how do you object to God doing the same? If you argue God is just a Sadist and doing it for the pleasure of seeing babies suffer, then why is the universe not a lot more like the stereotypical hell?

In response to the "letting off the hook" comment. I want to state that I don’t let humans "off the hook." In the topic of birth defects, most of the time they are beyond the humans control. Sometimes a birth defect is due to irresponsible actions by the mother or father during pregnancy. Those people deserve condemnation for their careless actions, and they rightly receive such condemnation.

Scenario 2) A mother drinks and smokes during a pregnancy, and gives birth to a superdeformed, superretarded, and superugly daughter. The community rejects and punishes her (and rightly so!).

Scenario 4) God curses a mothers pregnancy and creates a superdeformed, superugly,. superstupid defective baby girl. In this scenario, should the faithful praise God in worship for His actions, or should He be condemned just like the smoking and drinking mother?


Only Scenarios 2 and 4 are relevant here. Here is a distinction atheists don’t like. God is not a human. Why do we assume he is subject to our morality? I submit that he is the justifier of our moral sense. Otherwise, to paraphrase Smashing Pumpkins, “Despite all our rage we are still just rats in a cage.” (its very late if I’m quoting rock groups!). How does that work? Process of elimination. Are you the moral lawgiver? You’ll be dead and buried within a hundred years, all-but-guaranteed. So I very much doubt it.

I’m gonna hold God to the same standard that I hold any self-aware and semi-intelligent being.

Ref to Job 40:8-14. When you meet these challenges, I’ll be willing to hail you as worthy of being the moral center of the universe. Until then, you’re just a person with an opinion.

Hopefully this makes some amount of sense to you? .

Sorry, no. You are raving at God, but don’t show why you are justified in doing so. Nor can you. You aren’t in possession of all the facts. Hopefully tomorrow, I’ll have time to write about how we end up choosing God as the moral standard, but until then….

I’m plum exhausted and have an early morning so I leave you with this.

Job 41:10,11. “Who then is able to stand against me? Who has a claim against me that I must pay? Everything under heaven belongs to me.”

And

“There are two kinds of people, those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done’ and those to whom God says, ‘thy will be done.’”

I dearly hope you will choose to be one of the former. Even if we disagree about God, I wish you only good blessings and certainly no harm. I have a child of my own on the way so your video is not some abstraction to me. I do not like it when God lets horrible things happen to innocent people. But I trust that he will make things better in the hereafter.

God bless you Aaron.

Aaron Kinney said...

ecualegacy,

Yea, I think this conversation is getting rather large! I am a bit pressed for time but I wanted to stop in here to say that I appreciated your thoughtful response, and I am enjoying the dialogue with you :)

I will respond by tomorrow afternoon or so depending on my schedule. Im looking forward to the next round, check back soon!

ecualegacy said...

Thank you very much for your kind words, Arron.

I'm moving my household this weekend, have work, and now classes are starting back up. It might be some time before I can post again.

I want to thank you most sincerely for making me think carefully about what I believe in and why. I hope I am providing the same for you. Truth is important and I bleieve that we all wish each other only the best as we understand it.

God bless you.

-EC.

Aaron Kinney said...

Youre very welcome, ecualegacy! I'm glad that you found my blog and decided to start a dialogue with me. Youre a cool guy!

Well, I understand what its like to be busy certainly. Im actually working late from home right now... thats why I cant respond in depth to your post yet cause I gotta focus on some spreadsheets LOL

But dont you think that you can get away with dissapearing on me! We still got some talking to do, so dont be a stranger. Ill have a good response to you within a day at the latest ;)

Aaron Kinney said...

ecualegacy,

Ok I finally got a chance to respond. I tried to reduce the size of it too since it was getting so big!

It is arrogant to think we know all about what is/is not possible for God. Yes, there are some things we can be reasonably sure about. For instance, God cannot violate the laws of logic and make square circles. Nor can He impinge upon free will and still say that we freely love Him.

However, if God is truly the Lord of the Universe, then he must be smart enough to make a heaven worth spending eternity in (where boredom isn’t a problem) or else it stands to reason that He would have gone mad already. If you argue he’s already mad, then why isn’t the universe even nuttier than it is, eh?


Having forced happiness on you doesnt sound too free-will-ish to me. And if Im in a state of mind where I am at 100% happy all the time, then how much am I still myself? I would be like a robot. You know, the more of something you have the less its worth. If I have only one life in a video game, I play carefully. But if I use a cheat code to get infiniti lives, I dont care how many times I die. Not only that, but cheat codes make games less fun. This analogy can be applied to life where its temporalness and risk and challenges are what make it worthwhile. A static 100% superhappy heaven for all eternity is the complete and total devaluement of existing. Why would anyone want to exist if not to accomplish anything, to grow, to change, to feel happiness and sadness, to earn your way, etc... All of those things would be absent in an eternal static garunteed-blissful heaven.

Granted, we can't know heaven is real, but He has promised it to us in the Bible. Wouldn't you want to live in such a place if it could exist? Wouldn't you be happy for everyone else who chose it? Or will you turn away from that gift and mock those who hope for it? Do you have so little imagination? Are you really content to play only with the fleeting pleasures of this life for a little while then fall into oblivion?

Lots of things are promised in fairy tale books, including the Bible. And if heaven existed, no I would not want to live there. I would request to God that my existence be snuffed out. I would want to return to the place I was before conception: the state of non-existence. I dont think Im the one here with "so little imagination" ;)

You’re straw-manning definitions. Death in the Biblical sense is not the end of existence, but merely the end for this body. You get better at the resurrection as you well know. Of course the existence of a satisfying heaven’s can’t be proved, but why hope for anything less?

I hope for something more, not less. I hope for my life to have meaning and value and accomplishment and risk and challenges. Otherwise its not a life worth living in my eyes. An eternal heaven is the ultimate "cheat code" of sorts. Sure you can get a high score, but you didnt earn it; you cheated.

I expect you are stumbling at where God tells you to behave yourself in ways you think are unreasonable. Every good thing has its proper place and time.

Yes, I do consider self-sacrifice and self-repression and acceptance of guilt for crimes I didnt commit (original sin) to be "unreasonable."

Who argued that we are morally indebted from before birth? You must come from a church background that taught inherited sin. I don't believe the Bible supports that doctrine. Quoting Ezekiel, "The soul who sins dies."

I have not yet met a Christian who does NOT believe that all humans are born inherent with "original sin." After all it is the thing that necessitates the salvation of Jesus. If you werent born a sinner, then what do you need Jesus for? If you dont believe in original sin, ecualegacy, youd be the first Christian I met who didnt believe in it.

See my comments above about how God must be logically consistent. Where things don’t appear logical, we must first ask ourselves if we are missing a perspective that only God is privileged by His nature to have.

Does God comply with logic or does logic comply with God?

Why do you assume your moral framework is correct? By what standard do you measure right and wrong?

I dont assume that my moral framework is correct. I came to this conclusion after much analysis. I could be wrong, but it makes the most sense to me. I measure the standard of right and wrong through consent, which is a principle derived from self-ownership. In its simplified form, coercion = immoral, consent = moral.

You serve yourself. Can you save yourself from oblivion? No. Are you a perfect judge of right and wrong? No. By what standard do you judge God? Are you the moral lawgiver? I don’t think so.

Does God distribute moral commandments because they are moral? Or are these things moral only because God says they are?

Have you heard of the euthyphro dilemma?

Basically, morality cannot be set or created by a conscious entity. Morality can only be determined or discovered through conforming one's worldview to the nature of reality and existence. Think if morality (analogously) like a law of physics. You cant decree that gravity is a law, you simply discover that thats the way it is, and you conform your worldview to operating within the laws of gravity. This is the same with morality. You discover universal moral principles through the observation of causal agents, in this case human beings.

Try this then. Serve God. Go back to the Bible and see what he tells the Christian about how to act. Does anything there seem like a bad idea: don’t lie, cheat, steal, run around on your spouse, etc.?

I served God for 17 years. I was very much involved in the church and Ive read the Bible cover to cover. Lie Cheat and Steal are all things we can agree are bad. But thats about it. The other commandments are bullshit in my opinion. Dont work on the sabbath? Bullshit! Dont disrespect your parents? Theres an authoritarian 1984 statement if I ever saw one. Respect is earned through actions and relationships, not through the brute fact of being the parent of someone. I expect every child to only respect their parents as much as they have earned said respect.

Why? What moral imperative can you point to by which you can say God is wrong to do as he pleases?

Because master/slave moral frameworks are inherently immoral. They are unbalanced and ignore the principle of universality. It sets a double standard for causal agents. It doesnt conform with observations of the nature of existence. It is, functionally, a far inferior moral system as well. Mine works much better and Ive never been happier :)

You are constantly accusing God, but offering nothing more than visceral revulsion as your standard of judgment so far as I can tell.

I have slathered visceral revulsion on Him this is true (sorry I can get kinda pissy when it comes to monotheistic god concepts). But my visceral revulsion is based on solid foundations. I dont always take the time to explain these foundations in every post I write about the issue, but Im happy to help explain them to anyone who asks. I hope Im at least able to convey these concepts to you accurately, regardless of whether or not you agree with them.

Only Scenarios 2 and 4 are relevant here. Here is a distinction atheists don’t like. God is not a human.

Correct. He is the master and we are the slaves. Slavemasters back in the day often considered their slaves to be less than human as well. Its pretty evil, dont you agree?

Why do we assume he is subject to our morality?

LOL! You fully support the authoritarian yoke upon you, both in this life and the (alleged) next. Wow. Stockholm Syndrome I think is the term ;)

I submit that he is the justifier of our moral sense.

But who justifies His moral sense? Who polices the police? Who judges the judge?

Otherwise, to paraphrase Smashing Pumpkins, “Despite all our rage we are still just rats in a cage.” (its very late if I’m quoting rock groups!). How does that work? Process of elimination. Are you the moral lawgiver? You’ll be dead and buried within a hundred years, all-but-guaranteed. So I very much doubt it.

By the way I love love love the Smashing Pumpkins!

You are raving at God, but don’t show why you are justified in doing so.

I hope Ive helped to explain my justifications for my raving. Clearly, if I dont show you my (alleged) foundations for my rejection of and revulsion at God, then I will seem like an idiot to you. It is my belief that my foundations for my position is solid, and if I can show you why I think that is so, it will help you get a clearer perspective of the competing worldviews and the merits of each. Because right now it seems to me that you cannot fathom a moral system with a foundation apart from an arbitrary all controlling lawgiver. Hopefully I can show you that the mere nature of unconscious reality is a superior foundation. :)

ecualegacy said...

This response skips around a bit, but at least I got it out :-)

1) You're assuming that all we'll do in heaven is play harps and sing a lot. The Bible is actually necessarily vague about heaven's precise nature. Only that it is a good place.

2) Pardon my podantic tone, but not liking self-sacrifice seems most selfish. And as I said, I don't buy or sell original sin as an inherited guilt. We're each responsible for our own actions (which is plenty enough).

3) The last thing I'd actually describe our relationship with God is a master/slave. More master servant. Slaves don't get a choice. Although even most slaves in the OT were actually voluntarily in that state for financial reasons.

4) Stockholm Syndrome - again a value judgement. If you don't like the idea of an eternity of meaniful joy, then I don't really know what to say to you to make you want it. Its something you take on faith or not at all.

5) Really all you are arguing here is subjective, pragmatic morality: not a very stable system.

6) It is, functionally, a far inferior moral system as well. Mine works much better and Ive never been happier :)

I'm glad you're happy, but this is merely opinion.

7) Respect is earned through actions and relationships, not through the brute fact of being the parent of someone.
You would have had trouble getting along with the chain of command in the Army.

8) euthyphro dilemma? Been there, done that, got the T-shirt. Objective Morality is bound up in the nature of God. If it isn't you're left with the nonsense answer of subjective moral systems which only work pragmatically and are subject to change at a whim. This is generally done by individuals at best (i.e. criminals) and by societies at worst (see Nazi Germany, Stalin's Soviet Empire, and Mao's China).

9) You discover universal moral principles through the observation of causal agents, in this case human beings.

Observing that things behave in a certain way is not the same as justifying them in an objective, binding moral sense.

10)But who justifies His moral sense? Who polices the police? Who judges the judge?
You gotta start somewhere and if there is anything I'm confident of, it is that humans are not the best lawgivers even from a pragmatic point of view.

11)Because right now it seems to me that you cannot fathom a moral system with a foundation apart from an arbitrary all controlling lawgiver.

As opposed to the arbitrary choice of man being the measure of all things? How arrogant of us!

12) The other commandments are [BS] in my opinion. Dont work on the sabbath?
God says take a day off and you complain!? There's just no pleasing you! Besides, that rule applied to the Jews, not the Christians.

It has been good talking with you Aaron. I really have to hit the books now (200 pages to be read by Wednesday plus an assignment). Here are my closing comments:

a) Your arguments are predicated on the idea that there is no conceivable eternity worth living for. This is a wildly presumptuous standpoint for a such a limited being.

b) Consider that your arguments lose all meaning one way or another once you're dead. They amount to nothing if you are right (I heard a nice definition of nothing recently. Nothing is what rocks dream of.)

c) I recommend www.christian-thinktank.net as a good resource to address some of your objections to the commands laid down in the Bible.