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Interfaith Dialogue
 IslamiCity Forum - Islamic Discussion Forum : Religion - Islam : Interfaith Dialogue
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Diagoras
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 8:24am
Originally posted by layalee

Even if one was to say that one tiny little matter, led to the evolution and creation of other life forms and what we see around us, isn't it still a fact that one source is responsible for that ONE matter that evoluted into everything we see?

Love to here your response 



Hey, thanks for the question Layalee. The answer is if we postulate a source that created that one bit of matter, what created the source? If you insist that this source always existed, why not say that this matter just came into existence so long as we are breaking the laws of reality.

Originally posted by Israfil



Diagoras I'm sure of the above five, you are one of the several categories I've just listed.



Actually, I'm not. My parents were respectively Quaker and Catholic and took me to church every day (the priest was a great guy too). And my life has been fine. Generalizations are not a good thing. My point, if you go to iidb.com and read people's deconversion stories you'll find that many of them were even fervently religious. Until you have engaged in a randomly-sampled, statistically valid survey and determined that most atheist fall into that category your conclusions are all based on anecdotal evidence.

Sorry if this sounds harsh, but I don't like being told how I think.

Originally posted by Israfil



What I was trying to prove was that the basis of faith [or the lack thereof] are subjective truths only relevant to us.



I have to disagree. If you are postulating the existence of a super powerful creature which created the Universe, listens to our prayers, intervenes on occasion, and, most importantly, whose followers think that the can make laws based on this supposed God's will and kill each other over it as well, then that is not subjective. Any such God's influence on the natural Universe could be detected and their followers must prove its existence before telling us how to live our lives.
A proud constitutional democratic republican.

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herjihad
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 9:28am
Originally posted by Diagoras

Originally posted by layalee

Even if one was to say that one tiny little matter, led to the evolution and creation of other life forms and what we see around us, isn't it still a fact that one source is responsible for that ONE matter that evoluted into everything we see?

Love to here your response 



Hey, thanks for the question Layalee. The answer is if we postulate a source that created that one bit of matter, what created the source? If you insist that this source always existed, why not say that this matter just came into existence so long as we are breaking the laws of reality.

Originally posted by Israfil



Diagoras I'm sure of the above five, you are one of the several categories I've just listed.



Actually, I'm not. My parents were respectively Quaker and Catholic and took me to church every day (the priest was a great guy too). And my life has been fine. Generalizations are not a good thing. My point, if you go to iidb.com and read people's deconversion stories you'll find that many of them were even fervently religious. Until you have engaged in a randomly-sampled, statistically valid survey and determined that most atheist fall into that category your conclusions are all based on anecdotal evidence.

Sorry if this sounds harsh, but I don't like being told how I think.

Originally posted by Israfil



What I was trying to prove was that the basis of faith [or the lack thereof] are subjective truths only relevant to us.



I have to disagree. If you are postulating the existence of a super powerful creature which created the Universe, listens to our prayers, intervenes on occasion, and, most importantly, whose followers think that the can make laws based on this supposed God's will and kill each other over it as well, then that is not subjective. Any such God's influence on the natural Universe could be detected and their followers must prove its existence before telling us how to live our lives.

Salaamu Alaykum Diagoras,

Welcome to the forum. 

I have no problem with your atheism as that is between you and Allah, (or not as you wish).  But you're a republican!?!  Aaargh.  LOL. 

Al-Hamdulillah (From a Married Muslimah) La Howla Wa La Quwata Illa BiLLah - There is no Effort or Power except with Allah's Will.
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layalee
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 9:36am
Originally posted by Israfil

Sister layalee,

Couldn't you say a super-intelligent alien being [who acquired the ability to create life on other planets] started the cycle of life on Earth?

Salaam, Israfil.

Yes, its possible to still say that. But even by doing so, we are still claiming the possibility of a creator.  I do find that Allah(swt) is super-intelligent. But I will never use the word alien. I like the label 'God'. We will never know where Allah( swt) actually reside. So, there is a POSSIBILITY Allah could reside on another planet, and created life on earth. But its difficult for my mind to grasp that idea, because I look at Allah(swt) to be in spirit format. But regardless of location Allah(swt) knows what we all do and whats in our hearts anyway.

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Diagoras
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 9:39am
No no, a democratic republican as in one whom supports a republic, not the political party. 
A proud constitutional democratic republican.

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Israfil
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 2:28pm

Diagoras, you are in bold:

Actually, I'm not. My parents were respectively Quaker and Catholic and took me to church every day (the priest was a great guy too). And my life has been fine.

Ok that is acceptable. However the development of any belief whether supernatural or not is systematic. There had to be external variables that contributed to the development of your non-belief in God. I too have read on Atheistic thinkers who grew up in a highly religious environment and had, eventually fostered their disbelief in God.

Generalizations are not a good thing. My point, if you go to iidb.com and read people's deconversion stories you'll find that many of them were even fervently religious. Until you have engaged in a randomly-sampled, statistically valid survey and determined that most atheist fall into that category your conclusions are all based on anecdotal evidence.

I'm sure I'll find wonderful stories. However, I wouldn't go to that extent to do an Haphazard sampling of individuals who share a non-belief in God to prove my point. The context of my previous remark was to show within the limited confounds of our environment our beliefs are highly influenced. For instance, you may have went to college and studied a natural science and had slowly developed a disbelief in super -natural deities.

I've known friends of mine who act as if their disbeliefs are not influenced at ALL, but all beliefs whether we agree or not are influenced by our environment. It is not to offend you but to prove that your beliefs [as well as mines] are the result of the environment. I'm trying to figure out at which point did you disbelieve in God [or if you believed in God at all]? If you can show that none of your beliefs were the result of your environment, I'll be highly impressed. The only other way something is not environmental is biological and beliefs are not genetically encoded.

I have to disagree. If you are postulating the existence of a super powerful creature which created the Universe, listens to our prayers, intervenes on occasion, and, most importantly, whose followers think that the can make laws based on this supposed God's will and kill each other over it as well, then that is not subjective.

You are mentioning this from the perspective of the follower which in this case you are right. But this mindset is not universally applicable, as you know well that the obvious- all humans do not share the same spiritual belief. Beliefs that are not held universally and only partially are subjective. In my mind of course what Allah states in the Qur'an is universal and humans, OUGHT to believe in it but outside this frame of mind I know that what I believe is not universally held as true because there are religious divisions that believe otherwise. Nothing is outside our influence-except....God [Personal Truth].

Any such God's influence on the natural Universe could be detected and their followers must prove its existence before telling us how to live our lives.

"God exist."

If such a postulation can be made then its obvious I'm bound to prove God exist but this is also equally applicable to the atheist who makes the claim that:

God does not exist.

Unless you comence in dialogue one or the other must prove that their claim is right-this is also useful in a debate. Many atheist's claim God does not exist for the reasons of empiricism but if possibilities exist then one cannot make a solid claim on anything. I've found in my life that we are all products of nature and society. Because I grew up in a highly Christian environment [although rejecting Christianity later in my adulthood] the transition from Christianity to Islam was easier for me because of its [Islam] familiarity. This was the influence my Christian environment had on me at the time. This is obviously a contrast to how you were raised but as I mentioned in my earlier post there are "lurking external variables" that influence which way we go.


 

 


 



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Diagoras
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 3:00pm
Ah, sorry then. I thought you were trying to cast my atheism as either rebellion against God or simple ignorance. Though individuals may have genetic predilections, I agree that belief is determined based on external inputs, generally arguments.

I don't really understand what you are saying about subjective belief, are you saying that there is no such thing as objective reality? Bear with me, I'm slow to understand.

"God exist."

If such a postulation can be made then its obvious I'm bound to prove God exist but this is also equally applicable to the atheist who makes the claim that:

God does not exist.

Wow, bolding is a lot easier than quoting. Thanks.

I make no claim that God does not exist, just as I make no claim that the Flying Spaghetti Monster doesn't exist. I just don't consider hypothesis true before evidence has been presented for them. Until I see good evidence for the God Hypothesis I put it in the same category as phrenology, interesting but no evidence. Indeed, both phrenology and the God Hypothesis make rather ridiculous claims.
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herjihad
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 4:39pm
Originally posted by Diagoras

Ah, sorry then. I thought you were trying to cast my atheism as either rebellion against God or simple ignorance. Though individuals may have genetic predilections, I agree that belief is determined based on external inputs, generally arguments.

I don't really understand what you are saying about subjective belief, are you saying that there is no such thing as objective reality? Bear with me, I'm slow to understand.

"God exist."

If such a postulation can be made then its obvious I'm bound to prove God exist but this is also equally applicable to the atheist who makes the claim that:

God does not exist.

Wow, bolding is a lot easier than quoting. Thanks.

I make no claim that God does not exist, just as I make no claim that the Flying Spaghetti Monster doesn't exist. I just don't consider hypothesis true before evidence has been presented for them. Until I see good evidence for the God Hypothesis I put it in the same category as phrenology, interesting but no evidence. Indeed, both phrenology and the God Hypothesis make rather ridiculous claims.

Phrenology is ridiculous.  Do you really hold that as equal to belief in God?

The History of Phrenology


Origins

Phrenology is the science which studies the relationships between a person's character and the morphology of the skull. It is a very ancient object of study. The first philosopher to locate mental faculties in the head was in fact Aristoteles. 
Several typologies have been defined, linking physionomy with character. The study of the face, physiognomony, has been particularly studied by the 18th century Swiss author Lavater. 

Gall and the birth of modern Phrenology

The real scientific Phrenology, which established a direct link between the morphology of the skull and the human character, was discovered by the Austrian physician Franz Josef GALL (1758-1828). Gall put the foundations for an anatomic caracteriology. He was one of the first to consider the brain as the home of all mental activities. 

 

In the introduction to his main work The Anatomy and Physiology of the Nervous System in General, and of the Brain in Particular, Gall makes the following statement in regard to the principles on which he based his doctrine: 
 

  • That moral and intellectual faculties are innate 
  • That their exercise or manifestation depends on organisation 
  • That the brain is the organ of all the propensities, sentiments and faculties 
  • That the brain is composed of many particular organs as there are propensities, sentiments and faculties which differ essentially from each other. 
  • That the form of the head or cranium represents the form of the brain, and thus reflects the relative development of the brain organs. 

These statements can be considered as the basic laws on which the science of Phrenology has been built. 
Through careful observation and extensive experimental measurements, Gall was able to link aspects of character, called faculties, to precise brain localisations. 
The most important collaborator of Gall was Johann SPURZHEIM (1776-1832), who successfully disseminated Phrenology in the UK and the USA. 
 

Other important authors on the subject in the last century include the Scottish brothers George COMBE (1788-1858) and Andrew COMBE (1797-1847). George Combe was the author of some of the most popular works on Phrenology and the hygiene of the mind, like The Consitution of Man or Elements of Phrenology.  The picture right shows a daguerrotype of George Combe. (Thanks to Miguel Angel Cuarterolo from Argentina for this image). 
 
 

The American brothers Lorenzo Niles FOWLER (1811-1896) and Orson S. FOWLER (1809-1887) were the leading Phrenologists of their time. Lorenzo spend much of his life in England where he set up the famous Phrenological publishing house of L.N Fowler & Co.  

Victorian Phrenology

In the early 19th century, Phrenology gained a rapidly growing interest. Some scrupless people did however abuse the science for commercial purposes, and the Victorian period saw the emergence of Phrenological parlours which were closer to astrology, chiromancy, and the like, than to real scientific characterology. Unfortunately, those con-men have done a lot to stain the image of Phrenology as a real science, and their bad influence lives up to today. 

 

 

Al-Hamdulillah (From a Married Muslimah) La Howla Wa La Quwata Illa BiLLah - There is no Effort or Power except with Allah's Will.
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Diagoras
 
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bullet Posted: 17 November 2007 at 5:57pm
Yup. Both have no evidence in their favor. Also unicorns, leprechauns, and evil ninja cyborgs from Proxima Centauri B.
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