Jun 4, 2015

Terrorist Attack: An Unreasonable Argument for Anti-theism

Argument For Atheism


Thesis Statement

 Written by: Dennis Mitchell Sweatt
InceptionIn this theory paper I will try to substantiate that the concept of atheism is provably a more cogent and functionally logical presumption that the caprice of any theology.

I was baptized in Grace Baptist church at the age of 12 in 1977, of my own volition. I attended church, choir, camp, bible study and other evangelical events during the 4yrs attending that church. I had been ‘saved’ and felt the love of god when I was a teen. My journey to atheism was by degrees, from a believer (There is only one true god) to an agnostic (God is out there somewhere), then deist (God is everywhere) and finally atheist (I got this).

This paper is intended to be a limitary argument but meant for more than just means of gradation of a successful stint in a college philosophy class. It is not directed as a polemic towards fundamentalist or neo-Christians, nor is it an attack on specific pantheons. My intent is building an equitable, consumable, relatable, proposition to seed doubt in the minds of supplicated believers in a dogmatic, ancient faith called Religion.

For that I must attempt a cauterization from predisposed dogma and decades of didactic indoctrination in less than 5000 words. In order to show the fallacy in a majority of religious absolutism, I will focus this endeavor on one of the largest religions in the world; Judeo Christian Monotheism.

These proofs are not intending to show a theology is more real than atheism, as atheism is not a belief; there is no context to being atheist. There is no special word for not believing in unicorns or Santa Claus. (Nor is there substantial proof neither exists or existed.) The unbelief in a specific dogmatic rational can be said to contain the definition of anti-theism. (Section A)

I am not arguing the meaning of the word ‘god’, nor the dissection of the word atheism, or a stand against christian apologetics. This paper should show that the weight of proof of an infallible being is on the shoulders of the believer. It is on the shoulders of theologians to explain a just god, a god of laws, a god of love that allows the drowning of women, pregnant or otherwise, toddlers, and the elderly in a rage against the people of the world; which he created in his own image.

Genesis 6:7 And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

Even the revisionist neo-christian, who may lean heavier to one side of his beliefs by way of philosophy, cannot escape the heretical genesis of his or her beliefs; germinate in the form of scripture or gospel. (Section B)

I will use ‘atheism’ further in this paper as a cohesive word for those people who cannot fathom a vengeful father figure watching over their every move from an inaccessible palace only reachable for mortals by trial and error. Those indoctrinated into a monotheistic dogma I will refer to as Christian.* As a form of theology, I am using Christianity as a religious comparative, though any formed and ceremonial veneration might fit into this thesis.

Those who read this paper have already experienced the essence of atheism in their own lives.

Doesn’t today’s Christian believe that Muslims are fooling themselves about Allah and the Koran? Do you believe that Odin is watching steadfastly over Valhalla? Then it would seem you too understand atheism.

*Since this Word program does not auto correct atheism with a capital A, or unicornism with a capital U, I will assume throughout this paper that the word ‘christianity’ does not require capitalization as well, even if it is, or we are programmed to react differently.

Section A

God has yet to be proven: If you accept the circular christian ‘possibility argument’, postulated through apologists like Alvin Plantinga’s modal ontological, that if god can exist then he must, the burden of proof is released from the religious theist and placed on the shoulders of the atheist. Then, if Odin can exist, then he must. A possibility argument can apply to any god, or none at all.

We are still left with a god unproven; a god of fable; this god has still not been shown to exist. As of yet, there is no substance occupying space, time or matter exemplifying a being called god. Just the ‘faith’ of his followers that god is all mighty, infallible, and without beginning or end. This faith is based on a story heard from another believer, who also heard that folklore from someone else and so on. Faith-based mythology from modern apostles who would be strained to explain the origins of their own canon.

“Multiple surveys reveal the problem in stark terms. According to 82 percent of Americans, "God helps those who help themselves," is a Bible verse. A majority of adults think the Bible teaches that the most important purpose in life is taking care of one's family.”  Albert Mohler - religiontoday.com...biblical-illiteracy.html

Who is the master, God or truth?

Rex est lex. “The King IS the Law
     A. God cannot tell a lie
B. God makes A not true
If God cannot make A, B.
God is not infallible.

Man's understanding of god being a god of laws that he cannot break is not provable. The law can only be immutable if god is the law and law is him. A god unable to change the law is fallible in the argument that god is infinite and ultimate. The lawmaker is not held to the principal of the law unless he is hiding behind that law. A law that causes the most harm would be altered to a law that favored prosperity. 

Attempts to qualify an unknowable are not beyond the scope science or religion; they have this in common. Yet science with each passing decade has shown the existence of an origin to the universe that requires lesser and lesser degrees of dogmatic faith than its religious predecessor. Ironically, in order to strengthen the position and relevance of monotheism religion is using science to fortify its ecumenical position with increasing frequency.

The repeated carbon dating of the Shroud of Turin by minimal example; the big bang as proof of a prime mover at its maximal.

“Research on this topic began with the eminent US psychologist James H. Leuba and his landmark survey of 1914. He found that 58% of 1,000 randomly selected US scientists expressed disbelief or doubt in the existence of God, and that this figure rose to near 70% among the 400 "greater" scientists within his sample [1]. Leuba repeated his survey in somewhat different form 20 years later and found that these percentages had increased to 67 and 85, respectively [2].In 1996, we repeated Leuba's 1914 survey and reported our results in Nature [3]. We found little change from 1914 for American scientists generally, with 60.7% expressing disbelief or doubt. This year, we closely imitated the second phase of Leuba's 1914 survey to gauge belief among "greater" scientists, and find the rate of belief lower than ever — a mere 7% of respondents.” - Nature, Vol. 394, No. 6691, p. 313 (1998)

How many religions are there in this world and how many of those religions claim an absolute godhead? Certainly, not all of them can be right. And what are the odds that only one is?

Is it not contrary that many of the gods, of Egypt, of Rome, of Greece, have similar origin stories as compared to the Judea and christian monotheistic fountainhead?

Romulus, Heracles, Dionysus, Horus, Osiris, Mithras, Inana, Buddha, predating Jesus, paralleling his story, accusatorily paralyzing theological reality with plagiarism.

Example 1: [1]According to Bhagavata Purana some believe that Krishna was born without a sexual union, by “mental transmission” from the mind of Vasudeva into the womb of Devaki, his mother. [2]Christ and Krishna were called both God and the Son of God.

[3]Both were sent from heaven to earth in the form of a man. [4]Both were called Savior, and the second person of the Trinity. [5]Krishna’s adoptive human father was also a carpenter. [6]A spirit or ghost was their actual father. [7]Krishna and Jesus were of royal descent. [8]Both were visited at birth by wise men and shepherds, guided by a star. [9] Angels in both cases issued a warning that the local dictator planned to kill the baby and had issued a decree for his assassination. The parents fled. [10]Mary and Joseph stayed in Muturea; Krishna’s parents stayed in Mathura. [11]Both Christ and Krishna withdrew to the wilderness as adults and fasted. [12]Both were identified as “the seed of the woman bruising the serpent’s head.” Jesus was called “the lion of the tribe of Judah.” Krishna was called “the lion of the tribe of Saki.” [13]Both claimed: “I am the Resurrection.” Both were “without sin.” [14]Both were god-men: being considered both human and divine. Both performed many miracles, including the healing of disease. [16]One of the first miracles that both performed was to make a leper whole. Each cured “all manner of diseases.” [17]Both cast out indwelling demons and raised the dead. [18]Both selected disciples to spread his teachings. Both were meek and merciful. Both were criticized for associating with sinners. Both celebrated a last supper. Both forgave his enemies. Both were crucified and both were resurrected.” - Jamie Frater - April 13, 2009

Example 2: “Heracles is the Son of a god (Zeus). In Library of History 4:9:1-2, it is recorded that Zeus is both the father and great-great- great grandfather of Heracles, just as Jesus is essentially his own grandpa, being both “The root and offspring of David” (Revelation 22:16) as he is part of the triune God which is the father of Adam and eventually of Jesus. Both are doubly related to the Supreme God.”  - Nicholas Covington

Example 3: “Horus; Born of a virgin, Isis. Only begotten son of the God Osiris. Birth heralded by the star Sirius, the morning star. Ancient Egyptians paraded a manger and child representing Horus through the streets at the time of the winter solstice (about DEC-21). In reality, he had no birth date; he was not a human. Death threat during infancy: Herut tried to have Horus murdered. Handling the threat:

The God that tells Horus’ mother “Come, thou goddess Isis, hide thyself with thy child.” An angel tells Jesus’ father to: “Arise and take the young child and his mother and flee into Egypt.” Break in life history: No data between ages of 12 & 30. Age at baptism: 30. Subsequent fate of the baptizer: Beheaded. Walked on water, cast out demons, healed the sick, restored sight to the blind. Was crucified, descended into Hell; resurrected after three days.” - Listverse.com

Since these gods are considered ‘dead’, or revealed by an archeological bibliography to have been created with at least the intent of mythology, we can deduce that development of a godhood is a practiced and desired didactic for teaching morals, explaining the unexplainable, and governing populations. Miracles frequently occur today as much as they did in the days of Jesus; and much before his heralded coming.

The virgin birth of a genetically spawned god was an expectation of ancient theistic and Polytheistic cultures. For men were only mortal and prone to death and disease. How pedestrian would a god have to be to copulate with a mere human that lived in a hut with dirt floors?

If parthenogenesis was a portentous act of divinity, every toddler born of artificial insemination would traverse upright, buoyantly and effortlessly over supple waters. 

“How is it that hardly any major religion has looked at science and concluded, “This is better than we thought? The Universe is much bigger than our prophets said, grander, more subtle, and more elegant?” Instead, they say, “No, no, no! My god is a little god, and I want him to stay that way.” A religion, old or new, that stressed the magnificence of the Universe as revealed by modern science might be able to draw forth reserves of reverence and awe hardly tapped by the conventional faiths.”

{It has been my objection for some time that any verbal or written postulations to any possibility that god doesn’t exist is treated by christians and muslims, as exclusionism. And this to me is a barometric marker of the true depth of faith in the believer. How can any true supplicant of the ultimate creator, the ultimate father, and protector, knowing full well he or she has an all-inclusive pass to an eternity of bliss, ever; ever be given pause by what a secularist might say. What impact could a ‘lost sheep’ have on the unshakable conviction of ‘The Saved’?}

Section B

Statement: Scripture tells us that reason came to us from God, but doubt came from Satan.

Objection: isn’t doubt a part of reasoning?

Is the existence of a ‘god’ desired above reason and man made?

“Given the bewildering profusion of religious doctrine on offering, given their mutual incompatibility, every believer should expect damnation, purely as a matter of probability.”  - Sam Harris – The end of Faith

Biblical scripture: Contained within are the within are instructions and ancient morals on how to bake unleavened bread, the killing of first-born children, plagues, petulance, slavery, war, gods vengeance and the resurrection of his human son. The gospels were written some 300 years after the death of Jesus through stories transcribed from word of mouth by men who never laid eyes on Jesus. So you are dependent on faith in the unknown if you chose to believe.

If these ancient records and philosophies of the Bible do not sway you in altering your ways of sin you are burdened with the flip of the coin.

  • Head’s; there is a god and your belief in him is required and your thoughts will be monitored at all times. Your sexual positions, eating habits, verbal explicative, the company you keep, race relations and devotion will be scrutinized.

You have been given ten specific rules to abide and any deviation will bring recrimination from an unfathomable, but loving, power which you were genetically shorted the true mental and emotional capacity to comprehend (Unless you possess the ability to envision a time without beginning or end).

  • Tails; same rules basically but without a god-like figure you will have to be responsible for their deliberations yourself.

Because of one man, Adam; and his ‘original sin’, we have all sinned and will be judged. This seems a heavy burden to pass along to unsuspecting sheep. The concept of original sin was grafted onto scripture by men, not god.

“Augustine's formulation of original sin was popular among Protestant reformers, such as Martin Luther and John Calvin, who equated original sin with concupiscence, affirming that it persisted even after baptism and completely destroyed freedom.”  Wiki

“In "De Civitate Dei"[6], Augustine defines original sin as the open disobedience by Adam of God's will by eating the forbidden fruit. The immediate penalty, as stated in Genesis, was death for Adam and Eve and all their descendants…In his words "the corruption of the body which weighs down the soul, is not the cause of the first sin but its punishment. And it was not the corruptible flesh that made the soul sinful; it was the sinful soul that made the flesh corruptible."  - G. Richard Jansen - Colorado State University

Created to be ignorant, punished for following his own instincts, Adam was offered no comprehension of the world he would seed. Isn’t it worth considering, with all of god’s limitless power, that god could have given Adam a glimpse of the future death and destruction of his own heritage? How was Adam to weigh and measure the biting of one piece of fruit against all the cruelty and destruction to follow with a near negative comprehension of life to come? Wasn’t the all-knowing god aware when Adam sunk his perfect set of teeth into the apple that he himself would have to watch Noah’s flood and the drowning millions of men, women, and children by his own omnipotent hand?

Or does logic tell us that these tales, allegorically or meaningful, come from the mind of men?

Since Council of Nicaea; the written form of what was once considered immutable truths from the lips of god himself, have contiguously devolved into metaphorical and allegorical fables. The Bible's Ungodly Origins - by Robert L. Johnson http://www.deism.com/bibleorigins.htm

Noah transporting billions of mammals, insects, plants (?), and his own family on a ship little more than five hundred feet long?

Ontological assumptions from christians* and their ancient scripture lend little evidence that the existence of a god is anything but presumptive. If the Bible is root to the tree of christian theology, why did god create a work that was evidentially fictional? If the Bible continues exponentially to falter under scrutiny, how can theologians lend their faith to a canon structurally opposed to modernity?

Objectionable Facts: Altered scripture; This original ending of Mark was viewed by later Christians as so deficient that not only was Mark placed second in order in the New Testament, but various endings were added by editors and copyists in some manuscripts to try to remedy things. The longest concocted ending, which became Mark 16:9-19, became so treasured that it was included in the King James Version of the Bible, favored for the past 500 years by Protestants, as well as translations of the Latin Vulgate, used by Catholics.
This meant that for countless millions of Christians it became sacred scripture–but it is patently bogus. You might check whatever Bible you use and see if the following verses are included–the chances are good they will be, since the Church, by and large, found Mark’s original ending so lacking.” James Tabor: http://biblicalarchaeology.org...gospel-of-mark

Objectionable Facts: Altered scripture; “A minority hold the opinion that Augustine is a heretic because of his acceptance of the filioque clause (meaning “and from the son”) that was added to the Nicene Creed. The original creed reads “We believe in the Holy Spirit … who proceeds from the Father”; the amended version reads “We believe in the Holy Spirit … who proceeds from the Father and the Son” (italics mine). The addition is accepted by Roman Catholic Christians but rejected by Eastern Orthodox Christians.” - Kenneth Shouler, Ph.D.
These treatments and additions to the bible are too numerous to fit into this thesis. This book cannot be the immutable word of god if it is so easily altered or added to by men born with sin.

Dr. Lobegott Friedrich Konstantin Von Tischendorf, one of the most adamant conservative Christian defenders of the Trinity and one of the Church's foremost scholars of the Bible was himself driven to admit that: "[the New Testament had] in many passages undergone such serious modification of meaning as to leave us in painful uncertainty as to what the Apostles had actually written" - http://www.answering-christianity.com/sake4.htm

Lest we forget, this ‘god of love’ for “all mankind” and what love he has shown to his helpless, sinful sheep:

"When they came to the threshing floor of Nodan, Uzzah reached out his hand to the ark of God to steady it, for the oxen were making it tip. But the Lord was angry with Uzzah; God struck him on that spot, and he died there before God."   (2 Samuel 6:3-7 NAB)

Wow, god really loved that Golden Ark (of the Covenant). Did Uzzah truly deserve to be smited so? How did Adam get by with causing death to be upon the entirety of man but poor Uzzah gets wasted for smudging gods golden scroll box?

"If your own full brother, or your son or daughter, or your beloved wife, or you intimate friend, entices you secretly to serve other gods, whom you and your fathers have not known, gods of any other nations, near at hand or far away, from one end of the earth to the other: do not yield to him or listen to him, nor look with pity upon him, to spare or shield him, but kill him.  Your hand shall be the first raised to slay him; the rest of the people shall join in with you. 
You shall stone him to death because he sought to lead you astray from the Lord, your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that place of slavery.  And all Israel, hearing of this, shall fear and never do such evil as this in your midst."   (Deuteronomy 13:7-12 NAB)

So let’s suppose this Buddhist monk finally comes down from the Himalaya’s and walks up to say, John the Baptist and tells him Buddha will give him peace. Now John is required to slay this monk outright.

And since this monk has never heard the word of god through the redemption of Jesus, does he deserve to writhe in eternal pain for all of eternity in the bowels of hell? Is this a plan? Is this the best god can do?

Why did god “harden the heart of the pharaoh” when Moses said, “Let my people go!”? Didn’t god know he would be killing the firstborn of in the land of Egypt?

“At midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle ... and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead.” Exodus 12.29-30

Contradictions can be exhumed from scripture ad infinitum. These are just a few examples of the violence and revenge of a god gone mad or better put a god with an ego, ergo a creation of men.

My argument against god is an argument for a real god. Not this apparent concoction of hubris and instability, who shockingly is a lot like men, with all their weaknesses intact.

The legitimacy of the bible cannot hold up to scrutiny, or history. Academia has made thorough investigations into the man-made origins of the bible.

"It is well known that the primitive Christian Gospel was initially transmitted by word of mouth and that this oral tradition resulted in variant reporting of word and deed. It is equally true that when the Christian record was committed to writing it continued to be the subject of verbal variation. Involuntary and intentional, at the hands of scribes and editors" - Peake's Commentary on the Bible, p. 633  

Conclusion: Since I began to research for this paper I have felt a change in my vector regarding atheism. And could I ask for more than discovering new perspectives and a stronger provision for my own previously acknowledged errors substantiating of my own logic on theism?

To be frank I have read more than a few papers and thesis on the web and I admit to feeling a twinge of jealousy when the author wrote: “I have changed the way I think about ____ since I started writing this paper.” This has finally happened to me and I am grateful for it.

But have I searched for fallibility on the plausibility or the implausibility of a god existing from our microscopic understanding of this universe?
Before this thesis, I had not. This was the pleasant surprise of my journey to support my anti-theism but I can no longer claim to be a stout, rigid atheist. I see our planet as being alive, symbiotic, and necessary.

What drove me from the church when I was younger still gives me pause when I hear Christians quote scripture today, the voluntary ignorance of their didactic adherence to an Iron Age manuscript provably written and rewritten by fallible men.

What is never discussed in the church is that strangers wrote the bible. That god in their bible is cruel, vengeful, war mongering, child killing, maniac that would put a hundred serial killers to shame with the number of deaths by that gods own admission.

“How many did God kill? Here’s the total, if you use only numbers that are provided in the Bible: 2,821,364.” patheos.com...book-documenting-every-kill/

God can be an inclusive word for the source of the big bang, or the nature of the universe. But forever will it be removed, for me, from the dogmatic scripture touted by supplicants of an ancient and mystical culture.

As far as intelligent design, I cannot quantify a consciousness guiding and design of the complexity we admire of our changing planet. Entropy seems inescapable. But while we cling to life on the tiny globe, spinning in a well of gravity, called Earth, we should be looking to the stars and to science for progress that will ensure our children’s survival centuries if not eons from today.

More than 72% of the scientists today are atheist. That's what science does to you, wakes you up. stephenjaygould.org/ctrl/news/file002.html

Misguided fundamentalism has been proven to destroy progress. (Al Qaeda)
Progress is why we no longer kill for transgressions against god, or burn witches.

But questions for my Christian friends still remain:
  • Is morality independent of god?
  • How can morality come from god and yet we still have free will?
  • How can we have free will if it given to us?
  • Does truth need god to function?
"We can know God only through His works. We cannot have a conception of any one attribute but by following some principle that leads to it. We have only a confused idea of His power if we have not the means of comprehending something of its immensity. We can have no idea of His wisdom, but by knowing the order and manner in which it acts. The principles of science lead to this knowledge; for the Creator of man is the Creator of science, and it is through that medium that man can see God, as it were, face to face." - Thomas Paine

"There is one notable thing about our Christianity: bad, bloody, merciless, money-grabbing and predatory as it is - in our country particularly, and in all other Christian countries in a somewhat modified degree - it is still a hundred times better than the Christianity of the Bible, with its prodigious crime- the invention of Hell. Measured by our Christianity of to-day, bad as it is, hypocritical as it is, empty and hollow as it is, neither the Deity nor His Son is a Christian, nor qualified for that moderately high place. Ours is a terrible religion. The fleets of the world could swim in spacious comfort in the innocent blood it has spilt."  -  Mark Twain, "Reflections on Religion"

Si Fallor Sum: I Doubt; Therefore, I Am

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