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Thread: Atheism Is Inconsistent with the Scientific Method, Prizewinning Physicist Says

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    aka Johan the Blind Goodman John's Avatar
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    In a way, though, I can see the argument: Total disbelief in god (or gods) without evidence is just as bad as total belief in a god or god(s) without evidence. We have yet to provide conclusive evidence in either side of the debate of the existence of God (or any deity one cares to substitute), so the rational position is to take the agnostic "I don't know". Admittedly, this does easily morph into the 'we haven't proved that dragons exist/don't exist YET' argument, but that's one of the dangers of having no clear position on a matter.

    On the other hand, there is the famous quote from Christopher Hitchens, "That which can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence".

    Evidence- not belief- is what matters to scientists.
    Belief- not evidence- is what matters to theists.

    (Note, though, that to many theists- believers in a deity- consider the agnostic position to be 'just as bad' as that of atheists; either way, in their eyes, you're just as guilty of non-belief.)

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    Being agnostic is not about sitting on the fence between organized religion or nothing. Organized religion is irrelevant. It means being unknowing in whether there is a higher meaning or purpose to life. If there is something beyond. No one knows, and those who are agnostic simply accept this. Those who believe in organized religion are driven primarily by their fear of death, mortality. Their belief gives them comfort in this fear. Atheists argue semantics while still having no answers. There is your debate in its entirety.

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    Being agnostic is not about sitting on the fence between organized religion or nothing. Organized religion is irrelevant. It means being unknowing in whether there is a higher meaning or purpose to life. If there is something beyond. No one knows, and those who are agnostic simply accept this. Those who believe in organized religion are driven primarily by their fear of death, mortality. Their belief gives them comfort in this fear. Atheists argue semantics while still having no answers. There is your debate in its entirety.
    If only! There are some good points in there but to say that Atheists argue semantics is well wide of the mark. Have you read some of the convoluted logic employed by this agnostic scientist in the OP to class Atheists as ‘believers’ and demand that they provide evidence for their ‘belief’ in God’s non-existence? His argument is a complete mess. The fact is that Atheists have less need of semantics because their position is correct by default.

    Furthermore, the religious camp is not a homogeneous block. Even if believers in god(s) were to be proven right the vast majority of them would still be wrong because the deity/deities discovered would almost certainly bear no resemblance to those depicted in their books of fables – whatever the religion!

    As for agnostics, well they don’t really count. Maybe ‘fence sitters’ is a little cruel but if you don’t think anyone can ever know the answer to the question then why get involved in the debate? (..not you personally, fjaran ) I’m sure that most of them lean a bit towards one side or the other though, or at least have a preference for religious or non-religious individuals.

    As for Marcelo Gleiser, he may be a self-declared 'agnostic' but he was awarded the Templeton Prize which, according to Richard Dawkins, "is usually given to a scientist who is prepared to say something nice about religion"... hmm Former winners include Mother Theresa, Billy Graham and the Dalai Llama so is Gleiser really the neutral 'agnostic physicist' he professes to be?

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