Posts Tagged ‘naturalism’

Does everybody get converted to another religion irrationally without a proper principled approach?

April 30, 2014

Richard Carrier a world renowned, author of several books as well as numerous articles online and in print with a Ph.D. in ancient history from Columbia University, he specializes in the modern philosophy of naturalism and humanism, the origins of Christianity, and the intellectual history of Greece and Rome, with particular expertise in ancient philosophy, science and technology. His parents were freethinking Methodists (mother was church secretary). He went to Sunday School and to church on holy days. He got converted to Philosophical Taoist at the tender age of 15 and then got converted Atheist (Secular Humanist) at the age of 21. He is reported to have done Extensive study of philosophy and world religions, formal and informal.

I wanted to inquire about this phenomenon and hence asked him the following question:

“I understand that you were born a Methodist Christian and decided to convert to Taoism at a very tender age of 15 years and then converted to Atheism at the age of 21 years.Under what principled approach you did that on both occasions?”

He replied and I quote from him:

“Taoism, I was converted the same irrational way all religious people are. Leaving Taoism? Reading, study, experience, and application of scientific knowledge and logical reasoning.”
A discussion ensued which could be viewed by accessing the following link.

April 30, 2014 at 2:36 pm (awaiting moderation)

@Richard Carrier : April 30, 2014 at 8:45 am

I don’t agree with you that everybody gets converted to another religion without a proper principled approach, irrationally.

I understand your observation, “There are thousands of false beliefs. We cannot read all their holy books nor should we.”
One could be born in any religion or even without a religion. It is beyond one to decide where to be born. Wherever one is born; that starts one’s journey towards truth.

The tools make easy for one to do a job. It is therefore important for one first to find a tool that gives equal opportunity to every religion to search.

Using a tool and then making a comparative study of religions to find which one, at a given period of time, is the most truthful religion is therefore most reasonable and rational.

I give here one such principle of comparative study of religions which was suggested by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad- the Promised Messiah 1835-1908 in the beginning of an essay that was read in a Conference of Great Religions held at Lahore in 1896; and was later published in a book form titled “The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam” translated in many languages of the world.

I give below the principle in precisely his words:

“It is necessary that a claim and the reasons in support of it must be set forth from a revealed book”.
“I consider it essential that everyone who follows a book, believing it to be revealed, should base his exposition upon that book and should not so extend the scope of his advocacy of his faith as if he is compiling a new book.”

Since one changed one’s religion two times without a principled approach; I think one should check again the truthfulness of one’s worldview from the start.


Unless Christians

April 3, 2013

Paarsurrey says:

It is a good post wherein purpose of life has been nicely explained and the hollowness of Atheism/naturalism has been exposed.

But for the sentence at the end “For me this is one of the reasons among many Christianity makes real sense”.

Jesus did not believe in the modern Christianity; it has nothing to do with Him.

Jesus did not believe in “Trinity”, or of his being “god” or “son of god”; or his death on the Cross; or his ascension to heaven bodily from Jerusalem after the event of Cross.

Unless the Christians follow the acts and beliefs of Jesus and Mary, they must doubt fulfilling the purpose of life; following Paul and scribes would lead them nowhere. One should not remain in illusions.


This morning I ran into a Starbucks and saw an old friend. We had few minutes so we began to talk about life and sort of catch up investigating each other. Within our conversation I clearly could see that he was surprised that the crazy guy he knew twenty years ago would become a Pastor. I could see the cold expression and confusion on his face as he wondered why I guy like me would educate himself in theology and waste good money on a certification on Apologetics. He thought such an education was a complete waste of time and money, but he wanted to be nice so he just questionably smiled as I answered his questions. I could visibly see his restraint as I knew he wanted to unload on me about being a Christian. However, he continued in the small talk, until an old member of my church…

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Atheists blindly trust science and pitch science against religion

April 2, 2013

Paarsurrey says:

I agree with you.

Atheists blindly trust science and pitch science against religion. Science is not a function of atheism; it is a joint product of theists and atheists. It was the theists who laid foundation stone of science initially and they contributed much towards its advancement.

Indeed, the atheists/naturalists have made it a kind of a fairy tale. It is myth or superstition in which their minds are locked and they cannot see the irrationality in their approach.


Fide Dubitandum

don-quixoteBertrand Russell, like the New Atheists, supports much of his attack on Christianity with an almost total ignorance of the history of science:

In this world we can now begin a little to understand things, and a little to master them by help of science, which has forced its way step by step against the Christian religion, against the churches, and against the opposition of all the old precepts.

It seems that it can’t be pointed out often enough that science and theology are different subjects. At least, the New Atheists seem to have so much confidence in the idea that science is theology (and metaphysics) that they feel no need to give any reason for the strange conclusion that science answers questions about God’s existence.

But it’s not only theology of which such people are ignorant. Any real respect for history would at least acknowledge the facts of past…

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Denying theism does not prove naturalism/atheism true

April 2, 2013

Paarsurrey says:

I agree with your lost paragraph:

“But simply to ignore the pertinent questions and reasoning will not do. Rather, the rational person will accept the most plausible choice as a guide to reality. What is not rational is to insist that, until theism can be proved absolutely, we should live out our days as if naturalism is true.”

Fide Dubitandum

Jesus_Mosaic_by_Mizun0hThough more will probably be added, I think enough has been said to demonstrate that there is more to reality than the physical particles and complex arrangements of physical particles that science studies. But, if we accept that naturalism fails, we still need to ask ourselves what else reality may hold.

Or, more simply, we know that there is something “out there”, so what is it? Tying together several of the past discussions here, we see:

1. Much, if not all, of our mental lives would be included.

2. We know that the ultimate cause of physical reality (i.e. either the cause of the big bang or the cause of the multiverse if it exists) also lies outside the bounds of science.

3. If one accepts the reality of moral truth (as most all who are not beholden to naturalism do), then these, too, would be included.

4. We also see…

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