Monday, March 8, 2010

The gods are on the other guys' side, too!

There's an article on, about a week old now, about the suicide bombing in Afghanistan that killed 7 CIA agents, among others.  The article is about a video of the bomber who describes the operation, saying that the original target was just one Jordanian captain, but that Allah delivered the CIA agents as a bonus gift.  It was an answer to their prayers.  You can read the full article here.

So many people in the world are praying for so many things, to so many different gods, that on any given day, anything that happens could be interpreted by somebody as an answer to their prayer.  During major sporting events, both sides are prayed for.  If you're a farmer praying for rain today to help your crops, somebody else is praying for a nice day so that they can do whatever they had planned.  If you're praying for your men to survive a mission, somebody else is praying for them to be killed.  If you are praying to get the job, there's a pretty high chance that somebody else is, too.  Whatever happens in the world, somebody will be able to declare that their prayer worked.  And they will do so loudly.  The person who was on the losing end of the situation will be very quiet, not announcing to the world that his prayer failed.  For the foolish and gullible, this will create the impression that prayer works.

This is the one thing that most religious people, whether they be Muslim extremists or Eillix, don't understand.  On the Atheist Experience, they call it the "I am the world" affliction.  It affects them by making them think that their interests could not possibly be competing with other people's interests, and that their interests are even important compared to other people's interests.  Why the fuck would a god care who wins a fucking sporting event, or want to see you get a new job, when women are being raped in a war zone at the same instant, and it doesn't help them?  In fact, and this is the thing that these dumbasses really need drilled into their heads, what we see happening in regards to the effectiveness of prayer is exactly what we'd expect to see if there were no gods at all.  This world we live in, the standards the religious set to declare success of prayer, are indistinguishable from the negative-existence case.  Shit happens.

So which is it, all you American-Christian prayers?  Did your god deliver your intelligence operatives into the hands of the enemy?  Or does your god perhaps not exist at all?  Don't even try to cop-out and say that your god had nothing to do with it, or that it was part of a divine plan.  If your god can't figure out a way to help you without killing off so many of your soldiers and agents, then it's a pretty fucking incompetent god, isn't it?


Jim said...

It is so sad that these people don't realize that everything they pray for has a win/lose probability. Plain and simple. It will or it won't, you win or you lose. If we were to just focus on the wins all the time the world would be fucked up. America wins every war, as does England and France and Germany. Vietnam never happened, my team didn't play last week, etc.

Your prayers didn't come true, the cosmic dice just happened to roll a certain way. Nothing more.

ANTZILLA said...

Also people give praying/gods credit that they should give themselfs. eg someone trains there ass off at any choosen sport/activity then prays for victory, instead of giving themself credit for all the training the credit is given to whatever they were praying to.

Feki said...

Absolutely, it is impossible to tell which side is god actually on. Stuff happens so RANDOMLY or CHAOTICALLY that it almost seems as if everybody kept getting fcked over by their gods.

Like what happened in Nigeria... muslims were clearly favoured. Then again, muslims can't build new mosques in Switzerland, which I would assume is more important than some killing rampage. How can you correlate victory here? Which god is winning the score?

If I was a muslim I would be very confused :P

Magnamune said...

Prayer is about as useful as a lucky charm. The only difference is the amount of credit you give yourself. If you find a four leaf clover on the day of your exam (it doesn't matter what exam), and you pass, there's a good chance you'll take most the credit, giving the clover a small amount. However if you pray, you thank God, as though He made you pass, and you had little to do with it.

What get's even better, is when the two get combined, a holy symbol as a lucky charm. They link the object (like a cross, or a bible) to god in their own minds, then practically worship the thing alongside God.

I have no evidence of this I can point out, other then my experiences with people who have done it. But I believe this is a valid statement. Please tell me if I'm worng.

Daniel said...

I would say that is a good point actually. Also a very good example.

ANTZILLA said...

Admin, I copied your post and presented it to creationists
This is the responce I got:

>> The person who was on the losing end of the situation will be very quiet, not announcing to the world that his prayer failed.

I certainly do not view it as this at all. Like Martin Luther says ”Prayer is not overcoming God's reluctance, but laying hold of His willingness.”

The Bible says that there is only one way to accomplish this and that is Matthew 17:20-21.

>>It affects them by making them think that their interests could not possibly be competing with other people's interests, and that their interests are even important compared to other people's interests.

This is not how we, or anyone, should pray. We do not pray because we want our teams to win at all. We pray because we are so desperately thankful for the life, food, and air that God has given us and that we just wish to thank Him for all He has done for our family, friends, enemies, and yes even you. We pray out of gratefulness, not complaining, get it?

Remember how Jesus said to pray in Matthew 6 "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven...For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen."

We pray (are thankful for) for His will and His glory, not ours.

Admin said...

"This is not how we, or anyone, should pray. We do not pray because we want our teams to win at all. We pray because we are so desperately thankful for the life, food, and air that God has given us and that we just wish to thank Him for all He has done for our family, friends, enemies, and yes even you. We pray out of gratefulness, not complaining, get it?"

What a bunch of bullshit! Every day around the world, hundreds of millions (perhaps even billions) of people pray because they want something. People like Ellix. Can't religious people agree on ANYTHING at all?

Maybe we should get Ellix to post over there and tell them how he prays because he wants stuff.

Admin said...

So did they pick and choose their points to respond too, again? Or did they actually address whether or not their god delivered those CIA agents for the glory of Islam?

ANTZILLA said...

I placed the post on a random blog about somthing else other than praying specificlly. So yes they dogded addressing the point. It seems it OK for creationst to hijak a blog with off topic posts however we atheists must strickly adhear exactly to the topic. Double standard much?

Magnamune said...

When discussing the existence of God, or the tenents of religion with a religious person, do not make the mistake that I did.

Today, I talked to 2 American Christians about what they believe. (It might seem obvious they were American, but this IS in Australia). The discussion inevitably turned to the creation of the universe. I, being inexperienced in the wordplay of the university christian, pointed out my almost complete lack of knowledge of the Big Bang. This caused the conversation to Stick to that 1 area, including the retarded cosmological argument for god. I only managed to get out of the hole I dug for myself by doing something I would otherwise never do: I began cherry-picking parts of the bible, which could be used to dissprove god, but had nothing to do with the topic at hand. The 2 men left with a small list of parts of the bible to read up on, and if I'm lucky, reason to doubt.

But that is unlikely. My point is, NEVER REVEAL A LACK OF KNOWLEDGE WHEN DISCUSSING RELIGION! It leads to difficult times ahead. The reason I bring this up here, is because I was going to suggest this 'gods are on the other guys side too' point to them, to see how they would react. Obviously I failed to do that, but at least I've learnt something from my brief encounter with Christians in the real world, where being all-knowing is the most important aspect. I did, however, find out that both of them working together couldn't name all 10 of the comandments, then suggested that all of Numbers and Deuteronomy were the law of god. This made me laugh (after I'd gone), although I am rereading those books, just to be sure of their content.

Also, sorry if I'm too off topic, I just wanted to get his point out, and didn't know where.

ANTZILLA said...

I have expiences the same thing. I also live in Australia. The thing I caught them on was evolution VS intellegent design. They tried to use my car as an example of ID. There theory went somthing like the car is complex machine and could not come about without a designer. Ummmmm ok I said however that design has evolved. 1st some cave man draged stuff around, then made a slead, then rolled stuff on logs, then made a wheel, then cart, then carrage, then car, since then cars have become more complecated as we adapted them for our needs. "Oh he said but humans used intelligence to make those things". Ok lets go back then to the universe, assuming ID is correct what state was the universe 1st established? He then began reading Genesis.... OK then I then asked why is it that we can see the universe expanding from measureing the movement of stars and from this calculate that the stars/universe started at one point (big bang theory). For ID to be true you cann't ignore the facts that we can see/measure right now. He now was puzzled. So I infered that eigher the intellegent agent behind ID would eigher of had to create the ruling laws of physics then create the singlarity, then cause/create the big bang, then create abigenesis, then create evolution. So if ID is right the bible is wrong. Magically this door knocker had no anwsers left a panflet and left. I have never had another visiter from that group again. LOL

ANTZILLA said...

Also the bible it self is the great tool we have against religion. Next time I have door knocker come to my house. I'm going to pretend to be a believer and quote passages like Deuteronomy 22:28-29 NLT

>>If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father. Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her.<<

So... theres this girl i like however she won't go out with me. I'll have to rape her and pay her father then she'll have to marry me.

I've got a couple of Asian slaves out back not working as hard as they should they'll have to be punished.

Exodus 21:20-21 NAB When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property.

Magnamune said...

That is a truely excellent idea. I don't get door knockers either. Something to do with offering "Kool-Aid"... Although, I wish I'd thought of that car thing, but my mind was being bombarded by stupidity that I didn't have the knowledge to refute, but I knew was complete bullshit. Kind of like the guy offering free candy to children, and I was a child. I know I shouldn't take the candy, I've been told not to, but there's no evidence I can see why not to.

Are there any sites, or books, where I can gain a knowledge of the Big Bang theory? I'm also considering reading the Origin of Species, although it'll take alot of willpower, just so I'm well versed in the subject, and need not focus solely on what I figured out, and then had confirmed by Thunderf00t's video Evolution for IDiots.

ANTZILLA said...

The way I've found the best info on evolution is debates between evolutionist and creationists on sites like this. The things that are puzzling/misconceptions of evolution just have to be brought up and there many people on this site that can fill the gaps of misunderstandings

have a look at the past post blog

Atheism, Religion and Genocide - Part 1 - Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Bill
a blooger Ellix brought up most of creationist misconceptions and were answerd by the Atheist propaganda crew.

The difference between us atheists and creationist is we take ALL infomation and make our own ideas based on evidence and logic. creationists have there mind made up and no amount of evidence logic will change there minds.

Big bang theory- just google it and sieve thought what is brought up. however you might find alot about some shit american sitcom LOL

Jim said...

If you want to read some stuff to verse yourself better in the Big Bang theory, I have a few suggestions.

First, read Stephen Hawking's 'A Brief History of Time' and 'The Universe in a Nutshell'. These books are well-suited for newbies because you can find illustrated editions quite easily, and that helps if you're new to theoretical physics.

Also, for those of you who are a little more advanced, I suggest Michio Kaku's 'Hyperspace' and 'Parallel Worlds'. Both are very good, and hit on a lot of the science behind the universe and how it works and how it was created.

AS for evolution, 'Origin of the Species' is a good start. But you should also consider some more up to date books. Richard Dawkins' 'The Greatest Show on Earth: The Evidence for Evolution' should start you well.

And I suggest everyone who is atheist give 'The God Delusion' a go. It is very simple to grasp, and it helps you form your own arguments and opinions.

Notice how us atheists encourage expanding our knowledge base. As opposed to those theists who censor new ideas.

Anonymous said...

I have a copy of "Hyperspace" by Michio Kaku, and was thinking of re-reading it, as I enjoyed it years ago. But I was wondering, is it still relevant? It was published in '95, there may have been many innovations and discoveries in quantum physics since then. Is it still worth another look?

Magnamune said...

I haven't read it, so I can't say for sure, but even if it isn't completely relevent, it has a base of the informaiton gathered at that time. I would liken it to building a matchstick tower. You can always add another storey, so long as the base, and pervious stories, are strong enough.

And Thanks, I'll head down to the library now, and get those books out. Should make my reading more interesting.

Jim said...

Still very relevant. I read it in 2007, and compared to the current state of String Theory and higher dimensions, it still possesses an awesome amount of great information. I really couldn't think of anything that has been outdated. These are theories that were revolutionary when the book came out, but are now better understood and accepted. If anything, it should be easier to grasp if you've been keeping up with modern theoretical physics.

Even if you haven't, the author does an amazing job at teaching you the basics.

Magnamune said...

Is there a place I can post about my de-converting. I was never religious, not even in a religious family, I just want to post the stories of those whom I de-coverted. As of yet, the tally is at 0.5. I'm halfway there. But I'd like to know a place I can put up the story, so other atheists know it's possible to do. Of course it'd include things such as innappropriate reason, and things to watch out for.

Is there such a place for my story, or should I send the story to you Admin, so you can put it in your de-conversion section?

Admin said...

Magnamune, I'd be happy to post anything that you send on that topic. Use the 'Contact' link at the top-left, and it will ge tto me.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Magnamune & Jim, I think I will re-read it now. It was WAY over my head, but I remember it was fun. It had a lot less "begets" than another book I tried to read once, and a lot fewer rules for how to hate people who are different from me.

ANTZILLA said...

Would you agree that in Australia that religion is more of a anstery/heritage type senario rather than a actual belief thing?
For example my family is supposed to be Presbritrian however my grandparents aren't religous nor my parents however if ever asked what there religion is there would aways respond with presbritian even though there just normal atheists with no prebritrian belief at all. I don't even know what presbrtitans believe.

So whenever the census is brought out it show the majority of people are religious however Austrailans are not generally (except for the rare door knockers, 3 times ever) religous and certainly not creationists ... would you agree?

Magnamune said...

Totally. If a cencus were to take that into acccount, I'd think about 60% of poeple would be agnostic, if not completely athiest. I posted a reply to, umm... I forgot the name of the blog, but it was about poeple who travel have less chance of being theist, and in it I explained a situation which perfectly describes this. I will admit, that everyone in the scenario was at max 25, but I don't think that matters much. Older people may not gather round and yell, but I doubt they'd care to listen.

In response to the book search, I managed to find charles darwins origin of species AND decent of man (in the same book), but I couldn't find any of the others. Instead I got The blind watchmaker. I'm going out today to a different library to find a brief history of time and the universe in a nutshell.

Considering the size of my current reading list, I think I'll wait untill I finish these before I move onto Hyperspace and Parallel Worlds.

ANTZILLA said...

This is my estimate/guess/observation no data to prove,in Australia >25yo 95% atheist
25-40 %80 atheist
>40 60% atheist.

I too will now read "origin of species" and "a brief history of time" should be a better dunny reading than the lastest ADB.

Jim said...

I know I've been doing this quite a bit, but you have to read this. It's not just the Christians that are messed up in the head. But we've all known that.

This lady has been sucked in by Islamic extremists. If your Christian god doesn't want you to kill people, go find one who will!