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← We asked "Do you really believe ___" and they said yes. Now what?

We asked "Do you really believe ___" and they said yes. Now what? - Comments

Queen Gusta, Destroyer of Worlds's Avatar Comment 1 by Queen Gusta, Destroyer of Worlds

Well, I find that an oblique trail of reasoning is more effective than blunt interrogation. For instance, I had a discussion along these lines at a high school track meet a year ago. Some chick a little older than myself was passing out pamphlets for her church group (She was some strange breed of Evangelical, as I remember it.) between her events. I couldn't help myself, so I asked her, "How old do you think the earth is?" Without missing a beat, she replied "6,000 years or so. Why do you ask?" I felt a little cheated. I had expected her to squirm like the religious people Richard Dawkins interviews for his documentaries. Nevertheless, I was determined to continue our philosophical exchange. I thought for a moment and asked her, "And what religion are your parents?" Again, bright, cheerful, and rehearsed: "Oh, they're Evangelicals too." I could picture her sitting in a circle with a dozen other kids, practicing what to say to those whom they solicited and when.

The good news was that now I had something to work with. "If you'd been born to parents of some other religion, would you still be an Evangelical today?" She looked at me as though the answer were the most obvious thing in the world. "Well, of course! The message of Christ is universal and I would always seek it out." This I doubted, so I replied "Really? Are you sure about that? Theologies and doctrines are nailed into kids all over the world from birth. If you'd been raised in, say, a Jewish family, you'd have Jewishness taught to you from age zero. I submit to you that the only reason you're an Evangelical is because that's the way you were raised to think. Why else would you hold such ridiculous beliefs about the age of the earth?" It was at this point that she began to get angry. I wasn't able to get another word in as she talked my head off about the saving grace of Jesus and how I was a sociopath. After shoving a pamphlet in my face, she stalked off. Granted, it wasn't an ideal ending to our theological discussion, but I could see by how ruffled she was that a seed had been planted.

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 21:51:10 UTC | #932195

Sample's Avatar Comment 2 by Sample

So now what is the subsequent question?

Perhaps clarify the definition of really?

Seriously, the question alone is a useful rhetorical tool. While a discussion would be great, the idea here, I think, is to start whittling down those cultural believers from the completely deluded. Religion doesn't own the patent on "planting seeds."

Now it's our turn to plant, that's how I interpret the challenge.

Mike

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 21:57:53 UTC | #932198

Queen Gusta, Destroyer of Worlds's Avatar Comment 3 by Queen Gusta, Destroyer of Worlds

Now it's our turn to plant, that's how I interpret the challenge.

Mike

Quite. However, getting someone to begin to question their beliefs in an honest manner involves a long, drawn-out conversation more often than not. Anyone can point out a fault in someone's logic, but that's just going to generate animosity and further closed-mindedness in the mind of the theist. That's where I went wrong with Pamphlet Girl. I was doing well on my meandering line of questioning, but then I switched gears and went for the jugular too quickly. The seed was planted, but most likely ejected. If we're going to make it our business to plant seeds, I'd suggest sitting down with a theist for an open, minimally confrontational conversation. Focusing on the positives of atheism rather than opting for a hit-and-run attack on their beliefs will get you a more open, rational discussion partner. Oh, and on the subject of the seriously deluded, everyone is salvageable (except for maybe the clinically insane). I wouldn't want anyone to give up hope on me if I was cowering in delusion. I'd hate for anyone to be labeled a hopeless case.

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 22:11:19 UTC | #932201

jameshogg's Avatar Comment 4 by jameshogg

I wonder if believers would respond differently to this sort of question? :

"If you were to bet £10,000 of your own money on whether or not there really was a talking snake, would you do it?"

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 22:12:18 UTC | #932202

ColdThinker's Avatar Comment 5 by ColdThinker

Sometimes it's wiser to simply accept that a person who really believes in magic wafers, talking snakes or 6000-year-old Earth is not in full command of his/her faculties and should not be considered sane. I would fear for the safety of myself and my family near such a cult-infected person.

Unless your job is offering psychiatric help, perhaps these delusional individuals should simply be avoided. You can never be sure what the voices of gods or demons inside their head has just told them to do.

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 22:22:21 UTC | #932203

78rpm's Avatar Comment 6 by 78rpm

"Do you really believe in the talking snake?"

I was at home in my quiet suburb, puttering around in the front garden. A woman walked by, spoke to me gently, told me I had a lovely garden. She asked me very nicely how it was that I knew how to lay a soaker hose. I said it was no big deal---just put it down and connect it to the spigot. She said very seriously, "It was a gift, just as God gave the Israelites the gift to know how to build the Temple." She went on to tell me tht every word in the bible was true. I asked her whether she believed that a snake talked. She smiled indulgently and explained, "That was The Devil speaking."

What the hell do you do with someone like that? You play a nine, they play a ten. You play a jack, they play a queen. You play a king,and they play an ace, and they win (verbally, anyway).

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 23:40:09 UTC | #932209

QuestioningKat's Avatar Comment 7 by QuestioningKat

OK people let's not go overboard with the psychiatric diagnoses....

Here is an idea for someone who is savvy with video... You remember "kids say the darndest thing?" If not google it. I recall asking a theist a question and she made up the answer. Then when I further delved into the topic, the story just grew. It was just like the kids on the show...they made up answers.

Go ahead and make a theists say "the most unbelievable things." Either go to a new age conference with a camera and interview people or make a video using clips to make a point. If your worried about legal technicalities, you could write a little mini book.

Q: Do you believe the snake in Genesis actually talked?

Answer: Why yes.

Q: Then why do snakes not talk today?

Answer: Because God punished the snake by taking out his voice box when he exiled Adam and Eve.

John, age 57

Q What do you believe about chakras?

Answer: I realize that I have a problem with my root chakra as a result of being born breach. I've been working on having my chakras aligned and have an atunement later this afternoon.

Sunflower, age 65

Q: Do you really believe what is said about Mercury in retrograde?

Answer: Oh yes,. My computer at work is totally messed up. My email shut down on me twice yesterday and a friend of mine emails me totally pissed. Today the police showed up at my door and I'm wondering what is going on astrologically that this would happen. Could this be Mercury or Pluto?

Gina, age 31

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 00:57:41 UTC | #932218

Rob Schneider's Avatar Comment 8 by Rob Schneider

Comment 4 by jameshogg :

I wonder if believers would respond differently to this sort of question? :

"If you were to bet £10,000 of your own money on whether or not there really was a talking snake, would you do it?"

This is, indeed, the crux. If you "really believe" you'll be willing to act on it, even to the end of your financial resources. Asking someone to verbally claim something that they've been verbally claiming for most of their life with no "cost" to them, will get you a "Yes, I really believe" answer.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 01:16:17 UTC | #932223

Starcrash's Avatar Comment 9 by Starcrash

Comment 6 by 78rpm :

"Do you really believe in the talking snake?"

I was at home in my quiet suburb, puttering around in the front garden. A woman walked by, spoke to me gently, told me I had a lovely garden. She asked me very nicely how it was that I knew how to lay a soaker hose. I said it was no big deal---just put it down and connect it to the spigot. She said very seriously, "It was a gift, just as God gave the Israelites the gift to know how to build the Temple." She went on to tell me tht every word in the bible was true. I asked her whether she believed that a snake talked. She smiled indulgently and explained, "That was The Devil speaking."

What the hell do you do with someone like that? You play a nine, they play a ten. You play a jack, they play a queen. You play a king,and they play an ace, and they win (verbally, anyway).

When I was growing up in a Christian household, I was also taught that the snake was "the devil" in disguise. In fact, my Christian parents recently tried to "play this card" again, and I had a rebuttal that they couldn't answer, so it may be useful in your case, too.

Genesis 3:14-15 14 So the LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this,

“Cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”

So why is the snake always referred to as "the snake" if he's the devil? And more importantly, how is any of this punishment brought upon the snake relevant to the devil? Does he crawl on his belly and eat dust? What "offspring" does the devil have? Don't actual snakes strike out at heels or get their heads crushed (because they're low to the ground)?

Plus it's important to note that the devil only shows up once more in the bible in physical form, and it's in his angel form. It doesn't make sense to take the form of an animal to tempt Eve, especially in the form of an animal without a voice box, proper tongue or teeth for speech, and with a cleft palate. There's a reason that the only noise snakes make is a hiss.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 01:17:49 UTC | #932224

BanJoIvie's Avatar Comment 10 by BanJoIvie

Comment 6 by 78rpm

She went on to tell me tht every word in the bible was true. I asked her whether she believed that a snake talked. She smiled indulgently and explained, "That was The Devil speaking."

What the hell do you do with someone like that?

ANSWER:

Genesis, Chapter 2

1 Now the serpent was more subtile than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die

"You just told me that every word of the bible is true. Now you claim that the word "serpent" is not true? The devil is never mentioned in the Genesis story of Eden. It clearly states that Eve had a conversation with a serpent (who incidentally told her the truth about the fruit. God lied to her.)

If the word "serpent" is a metaphor, then every other word is fair game. Either accept a taking snake or abandon literalism."

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 01:39:11 UTC | #932231

road_runner321's Avatar Comment 11 by road_runner321

This kind of response is so staggering that my brain seems to seize up in response and I hear my inner monologue say, "It's very dark in here...and we may die."

How about this.

You: "You really believe a snake talked?

Them: "Yes."

(take a moment to collect your jaw)

You: "If you were to hear a snake talk now, would you think it more likely that it was possessed by Lucifer, or that you were actually just hallucinating? If somebody else told you they heard a talking snake, would you think they were lying, mistaken, crazy, or would you believe them?

Replace the talking snake with any other biblical happening as the situation merits. If they say supernatural forces are more likely than dishonesty or misfiring brains, it tells you how likely they are to regard rational thought very highly. Besides this I can think of nothing to say in response. Take it as a strong sign that you are not about to win the irrational brinksmanship game that this person is playing. It's a nice barometer on how much of a chance you have of actually having an intelligent conversation, or just giving this person the opportunity to rehearse their faith script. If you want to continue just for the masochistic thrill, then, by all means, do. Otherwise, get out quick.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 01:39:13 UTC | #932232

Austin K's Avatar Comment 12 by Austin K

"I realize that I have a problem with my root chakra as a result of being born breach. I've been working on having my chakras aligned and have an atunement later this afternoon.

Sunflower, age 65"

... she would be named sunflower wouldn't she.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 03:27:19 UTC | #932237

Laura Bow's Avatar Comment 13 by Laura Bow

I have been tempted to put a questionnaire out to my friends/family on Facebook, and ask all of them who would consider themselves "Christian" to answer it anonymously. Some of the questions I would ask would be:

  1. Do you see the Bible as a metaphorical book, or a historical account of real events?
  2. Do you believe in evolution?
  3. Do you believe humanity really started with two people named Adam and Eve?
  4. Do you believe in the story of Noah's Ark? If so, did Noah round up two of every insect (i.e. various species of spider)?
  5. Do you believe that Moses literally parted the Red Sea?
  6. If yes to #5, do you believe similar miracles happen in modern times? And If you read about a similar incident happening today on the internet, would you believe it?
  7. Aren't you lucky that you just happened to be born into the right religion? Do you think it's fair that so many are born into the wrong one?
  8. At what point should Christians give up on Christ coming back and start looking into other believe systems?

I would love to do this, because one thing I've noticed is that most Christians I've met really haven't asked themselves many of these questions. If one were to put it in questionnaire form, they would have to answer each question in sequence instead of changing the topic (i.e. "that's not what matters, what matters is that I feel God's presence when I pray!") and really think about their answers. One day, an Evangelical woman I had befriended met up with me for coffee specifically to talk about religion (she had initiated the topic with me). When we finally worked up the nerve to broach the topic I said, "Well, every Christian is different, so I suppose I'm just curious as to what your beliefs are." I started asking her these questions and she seemed genuinely surprised by her own answers. She told me she DID believe in evolution TO AN EXTENT, but she had trouble believing that scientists could really estimate what was happening millions of years ago, and she just couldn't fathom us evolving from apes. I then asked her if she believed in the Noah's Ark story. "Well. Yeah, I do". "Really. You think THAT is easier to believe than scientific theories that have come from rigorous and complex observation and study?" Pause. "Well, yeah, when you put it like that it sounds really crazy doesn't it? I don't know..." "And why don't you think miracles like that happen now adays? Modern day 'miracles' are usually much less sensational..." "Well, my husband and I do wonder that all the time..." Our whole one hour long conversation went this way, and by the end of it she was really opening up to me. She confessed that she doesn't believe in "speaking in tongues" but that there is pressure within her church to do it anyway. I went on to send her potholer54 links on youtube, to ease some of her concerns about carbon dating and theories of human evolution. I never got a clear response from her, but I think our interaction had the tiniest impact on her thinking.

I also think if one were to post the anonymous results of such a questionnaire the absurdity of the results would be apparent to at least the occasional person who had answered.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 05:54:18 UTC | #932251

irate_atheist's Avatar Comment 14 by irate_atheist

Now what?

Run a fucking mile.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 08:19:12 UTC | #932259

paulmcuk's Avatar Comment 15 by paulmcuk

Comment 14 by irate_atheist :

Now what? Run a fucking mile.

Yeah, this. I think the question is a useful filter to sort out the real crazies from those who still show a glimmer of reasoned thinking. No point trying to debate with the former, other than for giggles.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 08:41:47 UTC | #932264

Sinister Weasel's Avatar Comment 16 by Sinister Weasel

I am not convinced that this line of questioning is going to change the minds of the true believer. A true believer is more than happy to contradict themselves and pull the faith card any time they will lose a debate. You can ask if they believe they are really eating Jesus' flesh, then ask if Mohammad really flew to heaven on a horse, followed by asking what makes one story more believeable; but it won't help.

The idea behind asking if people 'really believe' is aimed at those who have possibly never had reason to question their dogma or ever considered another way of thinking. So to answer the OP question, if they cannot distinguish between rationality and faith then there is nothing you can do to change their mind. If they show any doubt in their answer, then you have already won. However many atheists discussions I read seem to be oblivious to the idea that these people WANT to believe, the idea they are irrational etc doesn't matter to them and they just don't care at all. If they are told they are special and God has a reason for all bad things, it makes them feel good about themselves and usually superior. Why would pointing out they came to their conclusions based on poor logic give them an incentive to downgrade themselves to mere human beings and suddenly have to care about the planet? It is a particular annoyance (to put it lightly) that hundreds of millions of people believe there is no point showing kindess to animals or to conserve the Earth because Jesus will return, again...But I am hopeful that a percentage of these people are just following the crowd.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 08:43:24 UTC | #932266

hairybreeks's Avatar Comment 17 by hairybreeks

RE: Comment 1

Rational arguments work fine with rational people. Evangelicals are not rational people and you can not win. You might as well come clean and state outright that you regard their beliefs as delusions. You still won't win but you won't lose either.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 08:46:51 UTC | #932267

Tyler Durden's Avatar Comment 18 by Tyler Durden

Comment 6 by 78rpm :

She smiled indulgently and explained, "That was The Devil speaking."

What the hell do you do with someone like that? You play a nine, they play a ten. You play a jack, they play a queen. You play a king,and they play an ace, and they win (verbally, anyway).

I don't think she's playing with a full deck.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 08:48:57 UTC | #932268

QuestioningKat's Avatar Comment 19 by QuestioningKat

Do you believe in the story of Noah's Ark? If so, did Noah round up two of every insect (i.e. various species of spider)?

I recently commented on one of those bad Yahoo articles online. Someone responded that God only rounded up two of every kind not every single species. After the flood these animals made up all the other animals in existence. I questioned if she realized that she was stating that animals evolved under six thousand years ago. My guess is that she was a kid??

comment 12, Why yes, of course! or maybe moonbeam, sunshine, peek-a-boo...They are made up stories except for the last line about the person wondering why the police showed up at her door (that she obviously didn't answer.) She asked what was going on astrologically rather than realizing it was a consequence of her actions (which was revealed in a post.) Yet her main concern about the position of the planets continued and she couldn't see simple cause and effect. If you do something wrong....the police may show up at your door. Ding Dong!

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 10:34:51 UTC | #932304

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 20 by SaganTheCat

for decades we've heard how american kids spend too much time watching TV, now they're grown up yet still incapable of seperating what's real from what's a cartoon

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 11:59:49 UTC | #932321

Stephen of Wimbledon's Avatar Comment 21 by Stephen of Wimbledon

Hi NGINERE,

It seems to me that there are two ways to address your 'Now what?' scenario.

One is succinctly, and pithily, addressed by irate_atheist in Comment 14. This is probably appropriate if you don't fancy yourself as a psycho-analyst (geddit?). But, I reckon it's also a good idea to at least have a go at the other response, before you put your sprinter's spikes on.

The other response is addressed in various ways by people above - engagement. As Mike (Sample) says in Comment 2:

Religion doesn't own the patent on planting seeds.

This is the key approach. If you find yourself asking closed questions (see Laura Bow's Comment 13 for examples) you'll - more often than not - find yourself talking to a brick wall (a lot like 78rpm in Comment 6)

I have already posted on asking open questions, here.

Remember, in any conversation: The overall objective is not to win the argument!

The overall objective, as Mike said. is 'to plant a seed'.

Peace.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 14:11:19 UTC | #932350

Sean_W's Avatar Comment 22 by Sean_W

Because they have evidence.

Look, I get in a tight spot and I pray. First I feel better right away. Then things work themselves out. That's all the proof I need.

Oh, I'm aware that things don't always work themselves out exactly like I'd hoped they would. But they do get worked out, and you know what else, if you look real carefully you can sometimes see where God did what was best to help the right people.

Shoot, I knew a guy that did 25 for a crime he didn't commit. But he refused to turn to God for help. Not even after so many years in prison. Then seven days after he was released he got shot in the chest and nearly died. Did he turn to God? No! His heart was still hard. But God wasn't finished with him yet, and two years later as he lay in bed dying from cancer, do you know what happened? He turned to God. Finally, he said, my heart is no longer hard. He realized then that God had been working on his heart all this time. -amen

-huh

I don't want to ask why because people are capable of believing God will throw your ass in prison, shoot you in the chest, and kill you with cancer cause he loves you!

I don't wanna know why, just stop it -really.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 14:48:32 UTC | #932360

Schrodinger's Cat's Avatar Comment 23 by Schrodinger's Cat

The transubstantiation is yet another example of 'Christians' following some practice that is nowhere mentioned in the Bible. What is worse is that in the original text of the 'last supper' this is one of the clearest cases imaginable of the use of symbolic language. That is emphasised by the ..'do this in remembrance of me'. It is purely a symbolic remembrance.

It's yet another example of why I ( and for that matter a lot of others ) argue that Catholicism has nothing to do with whatever Jesus may have founded. All these Popes and bishops and theologians are precisely the people of whom Jesus would have said ' Woe unto ye....scribes, pharises, hypocrites !'

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 15:33:58 UTC | #932369

wolfhoundGrowl's Avatar Comment 24 by wolfhoundGrowl

Response Queston : "then if you really believe the words of the bible as you have just said you do why do you go to the office instead of standing in the pulpit trying to help people see that without Jesus they will burn in hell? Why do you go to the gym instead of spending all your leisure time praying for lost souls? Why do you watch TV instead of spendin you time verbally wrestling with people in the streets who refuse to listen to the call of Christ Jesus?"

with these questions people may begin to wonder whether they really truly believe these things

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 15:57:12 UTC | #932373

Sean_W's Avatar Comment 25 by Sean_W

Comment 23 by Schrodinger's Cat

Catholicism is truly remarkable in that regard isn't it? Is there anything about Jesus that they have right? They erased his Jewishness, created a Trinity, made his Passover speech into a cannibalistic ritual, made salvation a future event, the Kingdom of God a place in the sky, baptism something you do to babies ... on and on, I don't think they have anything right.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 16:05:05 UTC | #932375

Sample's Avatar Comment 26 by Sample

ALERT An attempt to rationalize the tenets of an individual religion is taking place. ALERT

Mike

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 16:28:38 UTC | #932382

VrijVlinder's Avatar Comment 27 by VrijVlinder

How can you know for sure someone actually believes anything?

Can a lie detector test for this?

I have said before that belief is like a drug.

I found these results which back me up.Researchers find brain differences between believers and non-believers

This is why they can't kick the habit. It is biochemical in origin. You need a counter agent. A substitute that will replace the god drug with something that gives the same effect.

Being that Atheism is not a religion or doctrine , there is not much the person finds in common or understands.

I usually get asked what I can compare Atheism with so they can have a reference point. Depending on the person's own knowledge of things and the world I may say "It is about the natural world and reality"

Then I might use a philosophy comparison of Taoism It is the closest thing I know, to Atheism.

Taoism (pronounced and also spelled Daoism; Chinese: 道教 or 道家; pinyin: dàojiào or dàojiā) refers to a philosophy and a religious tradition that emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao (道), the source and essence of everything that exists. The Chinese word Tao (or Dao, depending on the romanization system used) is usually translated as "way", "path" or "principle", but in this context takes its meaning from "reality" or "nature", which the word Tao can also mean. The proper path in life, says Taoism, is one that works in harmony with reality, the essence of the natural universe.

Also it is older that Judaism, which then makes the person interested in learning about Tao and can possibly arrive at a point of understanding that if evolution is too hard core a subject to debate being it took millions of years, Looking back at 2 thousand years BC and that there were and are other philosophies similar to Atheism, they might understand where this idea of the natural world and reality began, or is continued.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 18:03:42 UTC | #932399

Nunbeliever's Avatar Comment 28 by Nunbeliever

Well, I think these question are somewhat misleading. You have to realize that religious indoctrination isn't so much about what to believe per se. It's more about creating a strong emotional connection to certain ideas. When you ask an indoctrinated person if he/she really thinks the world is 6000 years old, in the mind of the indoctrinated believer you don't really ask a question but you are questioning that person's faith. The rational faculties are overtaken by an emotional urge to defend cherished beliefs. I'm pretty sure you would get the same response from a homeopath or a new ager if you confronted them with facts that show how ludicrious their beliefs are.

This is the whole idea with indoctrination. To make certain ideas immune to criticism. Believers never really use reason to defend their beliefs. Arguments camouflaged as rational arguments really are just rethorics to satisfy the emotional need of the believer. This is very evident if you watch a debate between say William L. Craig and some scientist. Christians love Craig not because his arguments make sense, but because he speaks a language that is considered sophisticated by believers. Christians don't watch these debates with an open mind. They watch them because they feel uncomfortable by the fact that their beliefs is under scrutiny and they want to see these critics embarrassed and humiliated. It's more an ass whipping than an actual debate. A way for believers to restore the equilibrium. They can go home with a feeeling that their beliefs have been verified.

There's of course different levels of indoctrination. We have the people who are beyond rescue. They are so indoctrinated that you can't even begin to reason with them. There's no way to change their mind and we should concentrate on debunking their arguments just in order for their poison not to contaminate others. Then we have these people who seem very certain but who are really quite insecure. These are usually very aggressive since they know deep inside that their beliefs are not really substantiated. Ironically these people seem to seek "trouble". It's like they can't stay away from their nemesis. They feel the need to confront atheists and "debunk" their arguments in order to reinforce their own beliefs. Then we have the ones who really believe just because they are ignorant. Finally we have people who believe but don't really believe. When they are asked questions like "do you believe the world is 6000 years old" they answer yes just because that is the obvious answer. They don't know why. They probably haven't given this issue any real tought. They just give the easiest answer. Their yes really means "I guess". If you aske them why, they really have no good answer and really aren't all that interested in giving one either. They just don't see why it would really matter if the world is 6000 or 13 billion years old. Since the former is the answer that they encounter on a daily basis in church and among their peers that's the answer they give.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 18:44:40 UTC | #932407

Sean_W's Avatar Comment 29 by Sean_W

Comment 26 by Sample

If the alarm was issued in response to my post I'm afraid I don't get it.

Favoring a particular interpretation of a historical figure or movement's intent is not automatically rationalization just because the movement's beliefs were themselves divorced from reality. It is either true that Jesus intended for his followers to eat him literally, or it is not.

Even if we were to assume that Jesus never existed, the assertion by the Catholic church that they represent an unbroken chain going back to Peter can be challenged in terms of what was most likely to have come out of that historic period from that particular people and place.

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 19:30:38 UTC | #932414

Deprogramed's Avatar Comment 30 by Deprogramed

Comment 19 by QuestioningKat :

Do you believe in the story of Noah's Ark? If so, did Noah round up two of every insect (i.e. various species of spider)?

I recently commented on one of those bad Yahoo articles online. Someone responded that God only rounded up two of every kind not every single species. After the flood these animals made up all the other animals in existence. I questioned if she realized that she was stating that animals evolved under six thousand years ago. My guess is that she was a kid?? comment 12, Why yes, of course! or maybe moonbeam, sunshine, peek-a-boo...They are made up stories except for the last line about the person wondering why the police showed up at her door (that she obviously didn't answer.) She asked what was going on astrologically rather than realizing it was a consequence of her actions (which was revealed in a post.) Yet her main concern about the position of the planets continued and she couldn't see simple cause and effect. If you do something wrong....the police may show up at your door. Ding Dong!

This intellectually depraved woman is tunneling sideways, isn’t she? It’s time to tell her to “Put down the shovel!”

Wed, 04 Apr 2012 19:45:21 UTC | #932416