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Debate Score:22
Total Votes:26
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 Yeah man, another God debate. Deal with it. :P (16)

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Awen27(541) pic

Yeah man, another God debate. Deal with it. :P

I have several questions. 


First, is suffering necessary for knowing that we need God? I don't just mean any suffering, but is truly horrible suffering necessary to know we need God? 

Second, is there any kind of true human free will? Or are all of our decisions the result of how we were created, our circumstances and experiences, and the decisions of those around us(which are not their own decisions either)? 

Third, what are your thoughts on cruelty in the OT? Is God unjust? Why or why not? 

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2 points

I would argue that horrible suffering doesn't show we need god, I think it shows there is no god. If you were god, would you allow genocides, rape, war, and epidemics? I know there is the rule that god has a plan, and we shouldn't question it. But that is basically just a way to prevent people from thinking critically. I really want to know, would anyone allow the world to exist in its present form if they were any omnipotent god?

Regarding free will, there is mounting evidence that humans do not have free will. This does not mean our actions are fated, but it means our brains are essentially systems and it seems like we will our actions, but do not. If you are interested read The Illusion of Conscious Will by Daniel M. Wegner a Harvard professor of pyschology. His book is not philosophical, it is scientific and is only based on experimental evidence.

Regarding the cruelty in the Old Testament, I think is it difficult to believe that god is loving or just if you have read deuteronomy or leviticus. For those who have read them you know what I am talking about. God commands the death of adulterers, homosexuals, and rebellious children. I know the story goes that he sent Jesus to die for our sins, but how can you reconcile a loving, kind god with the fact that in the old testament it is commanded that you kill everyone who doesn't believe in him.

Side: If god exists he is not loving or kind
MKIced(2510) Disputed
1 point

Suffering allows us to experience unbridled joy. For a similar situation, take a child and only let him out of a dark room when it is nighttime. He will never know any different. He will never be able to compare it to daytime. The same goes for good and evil. There is a duality of nature here and evil is necessary.

I'm not so sure I understand how we don't have free will. I could react differently to a situation than you would. Maybe we were raised very differently and that is why, but I could still react differently than my siblings, friends, and family. This, surely, shows free will. Even twins have free will apart from each other and are not essentially systems.

And yeah, the Old Testament is pretty morbid at times. But I suppose some of it is just to show that we should trust in God no matter what, like when Abraham was told to kill his son, Isaac. Honestly, I feel they could've expressed that rule a little bit better. :) Especially the ban at Jericho. Basically, they invaded Jericho and were told to kill everybody and everything. Horrible stuff...

Side: Yes God exists
ledhead818(637) Disputed
2 points

I'm not sure what your first paragraph is trying to prove. I can't see any reason why you ever advocate that suffering is a good thing, that is completely insane.

Lack of free will does not mean all people act the same. Your actions, behaviors, likes dislikes, fears, etc. are based upon your genetic makeup, and your environment. Here is a taste of the argument from a neuroscience perspective. If you are really curious, check out the book I recommended.

I think you misinterpreted the tale of Abraham. What you were supposed to get out of it was that you need to be willing to obey god no matter what so that you will be rewarded. Even though Gabreil I believe it was intervened in the last second, that is totally irrelevant. God wanted Abraham to be willing to kill his son, whether or not he let him doesn't matter. That's a pretty egotistical, perverted god who would want you to be willing to murder your child for him.

Side: If god exists he is not loving or kind
SaynMan(1) Disputed
1 point

The problem with your first arguement is that suffering (pain, unhappyness, etc) and joy (physical pleasure, happiness, etc) are physical sensations caused chemically whereas good and evil are subjective abstract concepts. If a person were raised in such a way as they never experianced pain (amost certainly impossible, but for the sake of argument), they would still feel the same pleasure sensations from activies such as massage, stroking, sexual intercourse etc. "Good" and "evil" however differ between individuals. The majority of people would say the Columbine High School massacre was evil. However, there still exists school shootings; the V-Tech murderer referenced this act in the material he left behind, obviously this incident didn't result in him realising what is to be good (by popular standards at least).

I don't think you understood the second argument. Some studies have shown that there is neurological activity in the brain coordinating an activity before an invidual acknowledges that they are going to make said action. Differences between individuals can be explained genetically; an individuals genome expresses proteins in different levels and in many cases with slightly different structures than anyone elses. The different expression of chemicals in the brain determines personality, not choice.

Finally, the God presented by the Old Testement displays many qualities we associate as negative in people. His need to be worshipped, his acts of violence unto his creation when they displease him, etc.

Side: If god exists he is not loving or kind
1 point

If God exists, he's got bigger shit to worry about.

atheists and theists i guess both seem to think that they have to be so fuckin' important that

Atheists: if god exists, he isn't loving nor kind

Theists: God exists and he loves me

what if you're just not important enough to receive God's full attention? what if there are bigger things that he actually needs to deal with. Why just make everything perfect for you, asshole?

here's my theory:

1. God doesn't exist

2. If God exists, he doesn't care or is not a personal God

3. If God is a personal God, he realizes that making everything work for us will just be stupid since it would be boring and would create a unipersonality world where we don't look forward to anything. we get desensitized in the exact opposite way. we don't feel pleasure because it's the only thing we know.

If God really did make sure that nothing bad ever happened, then life would surely be worthless.

but it's more likely 1 or 2. but for those who are religious, i suggest using 3 cause it makes perfect sense (when you rule out the Fantasy part).

Side: Philosophy
2 points

isn't number three why he gave us choice and personalities? if not, then we would be little puppets, as you said, with no option but to obey him. because we have choice, we have the power to disobey him.

Side: Yes God exists
ThePyg(6737) Disputed
1 point

how is this a rebuttal? i said 3 would be YOUR best argument. and you even said i was right...

so, what's with the down vote?

Side: Philosophy
1 point

I don't know why ledhead was downvoted, so I fixed it. :)

Side: Philosophy
1 point

First of all there is a god now the reason for suffering is someone by the name of satan. Originally the earth was suppose to be a beautiful place where people didn't hurt each other and so on but thanks to a greedy angel by the name of beelzebub(not sure on the spelling) all that was ruined we all know the story of adam and eve and how they were kicked out of the garden of eden well thats when it started. God is not to blame for any of the suffering today the actual ruler of the earth today satan is we have bad greedy people on the earth today and they are like satan with there cruel acts. We have free will as god gave it to us and so did satan. For them who don't believe in he bible etc your missing out on all your questions being answered it all makes so much sense.

Side: Philosophy

First, is suffering necessary for knowing that we need God? I don't just mean any suffering, but is truly horrible suffering necessary to know we need God? I guess suffering is necessary because it brings us closer to God, I guess what im trying to say is that without suffering people wouldnt even consider God, because they would have everything they needed, but suffering is necessary so we can become mature and so that we learn perseverance. In the book of james i read that trials and tribulations bring perseverance and perseverance brings spiritual maturity. Without suffering, id hate to say that this world would never have looked to God, but i thank God for my sufferings, because through them ive learned alot about life and of course i came to know just how great God is.

Second, is there any kind of true human free will? Or are all of our decisions the result of how we were created, our circumstances and experiences, and the decisions of those around us(which are not their own decisions either)? Yes we all have free will, We decide wedther we go to heaven or hell, we are the ones who chose wedther we will follow God or chose to ignore him. if that werent the case, God wouldve made us robots.

Third, what are your thoughts on cruelty in the OT? Is God unjust? Why or why not? I really dont know what OT is but God isnt an unjust God, he actually gives us alot of opportunities to turn away from sin, but we chose not to listen and just like ur mom or dad discipline you whenever you disobey them, so does God discipline us when we disobey, he lets us go through pain and suffering so we can have a dose of our own selfish acts

Side: Philosophy
Awen27(541) Disputed
1 point

But what about those who suffer and never get any relief? There are people who want to believe in God but can't rationalize it in their minds because of suffering, issues with biblical passages that seem immoral, etc.

As for the cruelty, the israelites once stoned a man for gathering sticks on the sabbath, "as the LORD commanded". Or what about the slaughtering of innocent children? I understand that the kids would go to heaven, and maybe wouldn't if they hadn't been killed as children, but God could've prevented them dying horrible deaths such as watching every member of their family killed by soldiers and then being killed themselves(Referring to the passages in the Bible that say, "Kill everything that breathes" etc.)? Couldn't God have let them die in their sleep the night before or something? I don't have exact references but you should be able to find them.

Side: Philosophy
1 point

Sorry this was sloppily worded. I didn't have time to make sure it wasn't before I had to get off.

Side: Philosophy
1 point

"If there is actually a God—a single God," he'd told me one spring while we were working manure into his wife's vegetable garden, "I think we're talking about an adolescent. It's got to be a kid-God who's trying to take care of this planet. Face it, there's just too many fuckups for this to be a full-grown Supreme Being with four hundred million years of experience. I mean, losing the dinosaurs, for instance—can you imagine a God who's actually paying attention allowing that to happen? Sorry, no way.

"This planet is being run like it's something somebody's doing on the side, when what they're really interested in is the celestial equivalent of getting laid or starting a rock-and-roll band."

This is my favorite quote ever about god or religion. It's from a book by Stephen White called Harm's Way... this quote basically sums up my feelings about the matter.

Side: If god exists he is not loving or kind