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Is Atheism wrong?

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  Quote King John Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Is Atheism wrong?
    Posted: 03-Jan-2007 at 14:09
You all should read Anne Rice's Memnoch the Devil, not only is it a decent book. It gives a fairly interesting insite into another person's view of existance and the human experience. It is part of her Vampire Chronicles but still interesting to read and it is a quick read as well
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  Quote ulrich von hutten Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Jan-2007 at 15:42
Is Atheism wrong ?
 
Only God knows......

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  Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Jan-2007 at 22:19
Haven't I seen this thread before? LOL
 
Oh well, I picked a single quote that popped out at me:
 
Originally posted by Emperor Barbarossa

If you are talking of the Christian God, then how does he not have a choice? He is all-loving, all-good, and let us not forget, all-powerful. He could do whatever he wants to do for the good of humanity, but instead, he lets all sorts of evil things happen to them (Which, in a sense, would show the impossibility of the Christian diety).
 
Evil is a result of the seperation that stems from the fall, which affects the whole of the created order. In essence, it is our seperation from God--the damage done to the image of God in man as a result of disobedience--that allows for evil to manifest itself.
 
We are the agents of our own choices, many of which are results or causes of evil. The Devil and his minions are everywhere present attempting to lead us astray. God provides the way out! It is through our acceptance of and participation in His Grace that the image is restored--a process that will be fully consummated when Christ comes again.
 
I realize this is unlikely to satisfy you, as it requires the acceptance of several presuppositions and involves things that we cannot possibly hope to understand. I do believe it illustrates that trying to define and critique God within our own rational constructs is impossible.
 
I'm guessing I won't be back on this thread, but if someone posts something interesting--or dangerously incorrect--and I notice, I may see you all soon. Until then, cheers and God bless.
 
-Akolouthos
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  Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Jan-2007 at 02:37
Originally posted by Northman

I should probably write a little more to sound more convincing, but where is the proof that I'm speaking the truth in my book?

I am not that naive. The point of those quotes was not to convince anyone, and was not intended to be any sort of proof. It was to point out that this is an old question, and that the all-knowing God does know people ask it, and has provided ample "Clear Signs" for anyone who wishes to do any research into the topic.
There is so much proof available, both damning and circumstantial, to suit many personalities, that I cannot possibly go through it all. I cannot possible know it all. No human can. To refuse to believe in God by claiming "there is no proof" without investigation the book which is said to bring proof, is akin to refusing to believe in Physics and denouncing Newton as a story teller.
Originally posted by vulkan

Which areas are you talking about here? Ive never read the Quran and would like to know... Also you can't really say that God has written a book where every religion out there with a holy scripture guide specifically states that what's written is the "word of God". Of course that hasn't been written by God and has been edited by whoever wrote it.

Its not just specific areas, there are verses dispersed thoughout the whole book. Some obvious, and others not so. Here are two essays from the University of Southern Calfornia's Muslim Student Association about it:
http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/quran/scislam.html
http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/quran/dyktb.html

The best book on the subject is Dr. Maurice Bucaille's The Bible, the Qur'an and Science

An exerpt (also in the second essay):
"My first goal was to read the Qur'an and to make a sentence by sentence analysis of it... my approach was to pay special attention to the description of numerous natural phenomena given in the Qur'an; the highly accurate nature of certain details referring to them in the Book, which was only apparent in the original, struck me by the fact that they were in keeping with present-day ideas although a man living at the time of Mohammed couldn't have suspected this at all...what initially strikes the reader confronted for the first time with a text of this kind is the sheer abundance of subjects discussed... whereas monumental errors are to be found in the Bible I could not find a single error in the Qur'an. I had to stop and ask myself: if a man was the author of the Qur'an how could he have written facts in the seventh century A.D. that today are shown to be in keeping with modern scientific knowledge?... What human explanation can there be to this observation? In my opinion there is no explanation; there is no special reason why an inhabitant of the Arabian Peninsula should have had scientific knowledge on certain subjects that was ten centuries ahead... It is an established fact that at the time of the Qur'anic Revelation, i.e. within a period of roughly twenty three years straddling Hegira (622 A.D.), scientific knowledge had not progressed for centuries and the period of activity in Islamic civilization, with its accompanying scientific upsurge, came after the close of the Qur'anic revelation."

I can certainly claim that God has written a book. Firstly, its part of my religion, secondly, which religion other than Islam has a credible claim to have "the literal word of God". As far as I know, all others are claimed for the prophet, as "inspired", or are not credible.

PS. In addition we know that the Quran is unaltered since the prophets time. 2 copies of the Quran in existance written by the prophets scribe (Zaid bin thabit), is evidence enough to prove that.


Edited by Omar al Hashim - 04-Jan-2007 at 02:40
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  Quote Northman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Jan-2007 at 17:36
Originally posted by Omar

I am not that naive.
 
Of course you're not, I know you too well to think that.
However, I see you got my point and since we have discussed this earlier where you have provided more links to sources which I have read with great interest, I still remain a firm believer of that "the truth" lies in the eyes of the reader and how he prefers to read and comprehend it.
 
Just an example from one of the links....
One of the scientific "proofs" was, that the Quran describes the earth as an egg (read globe) - the bible does not.
But with the knowledge that this fact was established several centuries before the Quran was written, I'm a bit reluctant to call that a proof - or even an indication of "Gods writings".
 
Or - maybe I'm just too old and critical Wink
 
(we are still off topic LOL)
 
~ Northman
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  Quote vulkan02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Jan-2007 at 19:01
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim



I can certainly claim that God has written a book. Firstly, its part of my religion, secondly, which religion other than Islam has a credible claim to have "the literal word of God". As far as I know, all others are claimed for the prophet, as "inspired", or are not credible.



Ok I can't really dispute that the word of God is what's in the book but i can refute His word. But wait a minute here a book or the book is what you mean to say?

Anyways I must say I was very surprised by some of the Quran verses and how they are interpreted to fit to the current scientific knowledge that we have.

One thing about its description of the various natural phenomena however. Some of these have been observed before by philosophers and wise men alike. For example a Greek philosopher(what's his name now?) thought that men descended from fish, which has some credibility considering evolution though not sure if humans branched out from marine animals.

Another example is the Book of Ecclestiastes that some believe was written by King Soloman son of David. Reading the book and some of Solomons proverbs you get the idea that he really does have an idea of evolution at work.

"One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever."

"The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun"

"Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us."

"There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after."

Are just but a few proverbs that may be interpreted as precursors to the theory of evolution, besides how do we know that some wise mind didn't say the things the Quran says before the Quran was written?
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  Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Jan-2007 at 04:12
Originally posted by Northman

However, I see you got my point and since we have discussed this earlier where you have provided more links to sources which I have read with great interest, I still remain a firm believer of that "the truth" lies in the eyes of the reader and how he prefers to read and comprehend it.

Aye, I do believe your correct in this. Religious discussion is quite different from other forms of intellectual discussion, in a different matter people are persuaded by proof or good arguments, people decide what to believe based on evidence so to say. Although in religion, regardless of their background, their current religion or lack there of, proof - or lack there of - is pretty much irrelevent to a persons opinion. In religious fields, people must be inclined towards a particular religion before they accept "proof" relating to that religion. If they are not already heading towards that religion, then any amount of logical reasoning will not change their opinion. I know many converts to many faiths - all my grandparents children converted to a different religion (one anglican, one catholic, and one muslim) - I don't know of any that have converted based on proof.

This does not mean that there is no proof, indeed I am sure that you two can see that in those essays is quite a lot of proof for those inclined toward Islam, what it means is proof is irrelevent. If you try to justify your beliefs on lack of proof, then you don't understand why you believe something. Proof is bountiful, if your willing to accept it, if not then no amount of proof will make a difference. I notice that niether of you tried to justify your beliefs by "proof" or lack of it, which is commendable in my mind, it's also odd that the only people who responded to my posts were the people who it was not aimed at.

Just an example from one of the links....
One of the scientific "proofs" was, that the Quran describes the earth as an egg (read globe) - the bible does not.
But with the knowledge that this fact was established several centuries before the Quran was written, I'm a bit reluctant to call that a proof - or even an indication of "Gods writings".
 
Or - maybe I'm just too old and critical

Yeah I agree with you in that case. I think the people who write these things get a bit carried away sometimes. I particularly don't like the missionary writing style of the second link either.
Originally posted by Vulkan


Anyways I must say I was very surprised by some of the Quran verses and how they are interpreted to fit to the current scientific knowledge that we have

There is only so many ways you can skin a cat.

Ok I can't really dispute that the word of God is what's in the book but i can refute His word. But wait a minute here a book or the book is what you mean to say?

At least you can attempt to refute it. The use of the definite article in my sentence doesn't alter the meaning.

Are just but a few proverbs that may be interpreted as precursors to the theory of evolution, besides how do we know that some wise mind didn't say the things the Quran says before the Quran was written?

You mean some wise men said all of that? Without making a mistake? Even the wisest man gets things wrong occasionally. Even embryology? I'm not sure how you could get that right without an ultrasound...


Edited by Omar al Hashim - 05-Jan-2007 at 04:21
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  Quote Denis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Jan-2007 at 12:09
no one can accurately prove there is no supernatural being.
"Death belongs to God alone. By what right do men touch that unknown thing"

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  Quote vulkan02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Jan-2007 at 12:42
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim

Originally posted by Northman

However, I see you got my point and since we have discussed this earlier where you have provided more links to sources which I have read with great interest, I still remain a firm believer of that "the truth" lies in the eyes of the reader and how he prefers to read and comprehend it.


This does not mean that there is no proof, indeed I am sure that you two can see that in those essays is quite a lot of proof for those inclined toward Islam, what it means is proof is irrelevent. If you try to justify your beliefs on lack of proof, then you don't understand why you believe something. Proof is bountiful, if your willing to accept it, if not then no amount of proof will make a difference. I notice that niether of you tried to justify your beliefs by "proof" or lack of it, which is commendable in my mind, it's also odd that the only people who responded to my posts were the people who it was not aimed at.

True that but our point here was simply doubting the verses  that other people take as "proof". My point is that some of the ideas in the verses might have existed before, its just that history doesn't remember the people who thought of it but didn't have a way to write it down.


[QUOTE= Denis] no one can accurately prove there is no supernatural being.


The point here is also to say that no one can prove there is a supernatural being too.
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  Quote eaglecap Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Jan-2007 at 17:17
Only death will prove it right or wrong but it is a free will choice to believe in no God. The only time I do not like athiest is, like in Communist countries, they try to stomp out the free will choice to believe in and serve God or whatever. The Chinese still persecute people for their religious views -www.persecution.org
I think it is fine to debate over religon if the other person is willing to debate but either way no one has the right to force their views on anyone.
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  Quote Dawn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05-Jan-2007 at 17:30

after reading this thread I looked up the dictionary meaning of "proof" There are 2 definitions that apply here:

1.any factual evidence that helps to establish the truth of something; "if you have any proof for what you say, now is the time to produce it 

2.  validation: the act of validating; finding or testing the truth of something
 
Omar:  is it possible that the proof you find in the Quran falls under definition #2   while the proof that I fail to find in any religious writtings I have read.(i'm first to admit that I have not read the Quran cover to cover)
falls under definition#1.
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  Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Jan-2007 at 04:11
Originally posted by vulkan


True that but our point here was simply doubting the verses  that other people take as "proof". My point is that some of the ideas in the verses might have existed before, its just that history doesn't remember the people who thought of it but didn't have a way to write it down.

I understand that, from now there is only two questions, and faith is the deciding factor to which a person will believe.
Either they accept the evidence presented in the essay as proof of the divine authorship of the quran, or they consider it a coincidence of interpretation and unknown infallable wise men. Only faith and probablity analysis remain . Is the existance of God or freaky coincidences more likely? Only a persons own personal faith can answer that question.
Originally posted by Dawn

Omar:  is it possible that the proof you find in the Quran falls under definition #2   while the proof that I fail to find in any religious writtings I have read.(i'm first to admit that I have not read the Quran cover to cover)
falls under definition#1.

Very important contribution Dawn. Although given the way the verses are used in the text I'd say that the ones presented in the essay fall into catagory #1, but the act of investigating them falls into #2. For example this is how [22:5] which contains information of embrology is in context:
O mankind! fear your Lord! for the convulsion of the Hour (of Judgment) will be a thing terrible!

The Day ye shall see it, every mother giving suck shall forget her suckling-babe, and every pregnant female shall drop her load (unformed): thou shalt see mankind as in a drunken riot, yet not drunk: but dreadful will be the Wrath of Allah. [22:2]

And yet among men there are such as dispute about Allah, without knowledge, and follow every evil one obstinate in rebellion!

About the (Evil One) it is decreed that whoever turns to him for friendship, him will he lead astray, and he will guide him to the Penalty of the Fire.

O mankind! if ye have a doubt about the Resurrection, (consider) that We created you out of dust, then out of sperm, then out of a leech-like clot, then out of a morsel of flesh, partly formed and partly unformed, in order that We may manifest (our power) to you; and We cause whom We will to rest in the wombs for an appointed term, then do We bring you out as babes, then (foster you) that ye may reach your age of full strength; and some of you are called to die, and some are sent back to the feeblest old age, so that they know nothing after having known (much), and (further), thou seest the earth barren and lifeless, but when We pour down rain on it, it is stirred (to life), it swells, and it puts forth every kind of beautiful growth (in pairs). [22:5]

This is so, because Allah is the Reality: it is He Who gives life to the dead, and it is He Who has power over all things.

And verily the Hour will come: there can be no doubt about it, or about (the fact) that Allah will raise up all who are in the graves.

Yet there is among men such a one as disputes about Allah, without Knowledge, without Guidance, and without a Book of Enlightenment,-
...
[22:1-8]

So it is used in exactly the "if you have any proof for what you say, now is the time to produce it" method.
"If you have doubt about Resurrection, " here is your proof.
It is presented as "factual evidence that helps establish the proof of -"Resurrection. (the Day of Resurrection is Judgement Day).
Which is clearly definition #1. Definition #2 in this case goes to the embryologist Dr Moore who performed "the act of validating; finding or testing the truth of -" verse [22:5]. We cannot apply definition #2 to verse [22:2], as we do not have the ability to observe events on Armageddon.

Edited by Omar al Hashim - 06-Jan-2007 at 04:13
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Jan-2007 at 08:07
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim


I understand that, from now there is only two questions, and faith is the deciding factor to which a person will believe.
Either they accept the evidence presented in the essay as proof of the divine authorship of the quran, or they consider it a coincidence of interpretation and unknown infallable wise men. 

I think that's a circular reasoning. In order to accept the Quran as divine and infallible, one should already has to be muslim.


Edited by Mixcoatl - 06-Jan-2007 at 08:17
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  Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Jan-2007 at 18:47
No. It means if you are not a muslim you become one.

You have the proof, now what do you do about it, either you accept the divine authorship of the Quran, meaning you become a muslim (or close enough), or you look for another explaination such as unknown infalliable magical wise men.

You don't have to accept the Quran as divine and infalliable to observe the evidence that it is a remarkable book, infact as far as testing the validity of the verses it is probably counter productive. The best work in that field has been done by people who converted during their research such as Dr Bucaille and Dr Moore
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  Quote King John Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Jan-2007 at 18:53
This is similar to some Medieval Church teachings, specifically the notion of the scintilla - that is a divine spark. This is located in all of god's children but is only realised when one turns toward and accepts god.
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  Quote vulkan02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Jan-2007 at 19:52
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim

No. It means if you are not a muslim you become one.

You have the proof, now what do you do about it, either you accept the divine authorship of the Quran, meaning you become a muslim (or close enough), or you look for another explaination such as unknown infalliable magical wise men.

You don't have to accept the Quran as divine and infalliable to observe the evidence that it is a remarkable book, infact as far as testing the validity of the verses it is probably counter productive. The best work in that field has been done by people who converted during their research such as Dr Bucaille and Dr Moore


I suspect this was directed to me somehow since I first suggested the "magical wise men" LOL.

Now let me make myself more clear about this uncommon issue.

Omar no one is arguing that the Quran is a remarkable book and it contains much to explain the mysteries of life. The real purpose of this discussion is that we are trying to question its necesseity to us.  If we the people have managed to observe these revelations ourselves through the observations of wise men(mathematicians, biologists, physicists etc.) what's the point of having a book describe to us what we already know or knew?

We know the universe is expanding, we know the embryo develops in stages, we also knew prior to the Quran describing it that the earth was round and Darwin came up with the theory of evolution without ever reading the Quran(at least as far as I know).

So does our belief in these ideas as true automatically makes us all Muslims because they are written in the Quran?
Of course not I might believe all the things the Quran contains but I don't necessarily have to go through its religious requirements at all. Plus if this book would have been lost or destroyed its prior existence would probably make it irrelevaent to the knowledge that we have attained so far.

I think the gist of this all is wether we accept it as truly "the word of God" or reject it as the sum of arbitrary observations.
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  Quote pekau Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Jan-2007 at 19:55
Good one, vulkan. I would have posted about this, if no one else did.
     
   
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  Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Jan-2007 at 04:34
Originally posted by vulkan

The real purpose of this discussion is that we are trying to question its necesseity to us.

Ah, ok. I wasn't answering that question. Its the whole heaven and hell thing basically.
So does our belief in these ideas as true automatically makes us all Muslims because they are written in the Quran?
Of course not I might believe all the things the Quran contains but I don't necessarily have to go through its religious requirements at all.

If you believe all the things in the Quran especially the oneness of God and Judgement Day you'd be muslim. The testable verses like in the essays are provided as encouragement for you to believe in the untestable verses that form the basis of the religion.
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  Quote vulkan02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Jan-2007 at 12:30
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim


If you believe all the things in the Quran especially the oneness of God and Judgement Day you'd be muslim. The testable verses like in the essays are provided as encouragement for you to believe in the untestable verses that form the basis of the religion.


Right what I meant was the testable verses.
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