Give Us Barabbas

Beneath my What If? What If? What If? post, Barabbas himself became an Apologist For Jesus, and left this extended comment.

Allow me to apologize for my brothers. I believe God gives every person a choice to believe or not. I’m not responsible for your choice and though it saddens me, I must respect your choice. May God meet you where you are and draw you to Himself “with chords of kindness” not clever or manipulative arguments or threats of eternal punishment. Have a wonderful day and again, I apologize for my fellow Christians that may have pushed too hard and far without respecting your freedom. – Barabbas

One:  Do not apologize for others.  It only highlights their misdeeds, mistakes, and contradictions.  It also makes both of you appear weak and needy.  Be honest.  Only apologize for your own errors.

Two:  Do not ever label my disbelief as merely a choice!  Never have I suddenly just chosen to be a petulant, rebellious asshole.  My Atheism is as fundamentally part of my being as my gorgeous brown eyes.  I have been an Atheist longer than you have been alive.  I got that way, not through choices and options, but by observing Reality as it presents itself to me.  The reality is, I see no God/gods.

Three:  A little convincing evidence of the existence of your specific God, and that you are somehow privy to what He/She/It/They will and will not do, would be a lot more useful than your vaguely-expressed wish and hope that someday – somehow – your Reality-impaired pet entity, will finally show up to see me, and validate all your unproven assumptions.

There was a reason that saccharine was banned.  Your ‘all sweetness and light and love and kindness’ delivery is, perhaps, a little less grating than those Apologists who promise me Hell and eternal damnation if I don’t agree with them.  At least they have the courage of their convictions, and are not afraid to express them.  Yours is cloying, and sickly sweet.  I feel religious diabetes developing.

Four:  Are you in the church choir, or should the line read, “with cords of kindness”?  You promised me no tricks or threats, but that sounds suspiciously like church BDSM – a little God bondage.  😳

Five:  You must lead a sheltered life, if you think that Mr. Torpedo-Victim did more than ruffle my hair.  I have engaged with Bible-thumpers who would have him for breakfast.  I feared none of them on a philosophy and logic basis.  The only reason I have hung back from some, is the modern, technological concern about flaming, hacking and doxxing.  Some of those good, loving, Christians quickly forget that ‘turn the other cheek’ command, when their beliefs are refuted.

Online Christian debaters give me as much freedom as I give them.  I allow them every opportunity to make foolish, irrational claims, and they let me point out the errors in their arguments, and make fun of their presentations.  See, everybody has fun.  👿

Book Review #29

Constantly curious about what Theists believe, but more importantly, WHY, I recently took advantage of the offer of three free books of explanation.  One was an actual printed paperback, while the other two were pdf downloads.

The books:
What Time Is Purple?
Answering Atheism
Proof of God

The Authors:
Tom Hammond
A blogger who only identifies as A Bit Of Orange

The reviews:
Nothing new – Same-old, same-old!  They disappointed equally, and to the same degree as all previous similar publications.

The purple book was a tiny, but expensive artifact – thick, glossy cover, only 46 thick, glossy pages, illustrations.  A copy was mailed to me from Maryland, by a blogger who calls himself HillFaith (Good News for Congressional staff).

The author began by inviting us on a journey to discover Truth.  A little reading quickly showed that all he really wanted to do was to find, or fabricate, evidence that somehow made his beliefs and presuppositions appear to be true.  That is not the same thing!

Even his title shows his prejudice.  The very fact that someone could question his unsupported claims was so alien to his vigorously-held, religious worldview, that he found it as strange as asking, “What Time Is Purple?”  Again and again, he would make unfounded statements and claims, and be bewildered that others would not simply accept them.

Bitter Mr. Orange Rind was no different.  His biggest, and constant, complaint/claim was that those rascally Atheists, Agnostics and Dictionaries – would not go along with his definitions and descriptions, so that he could blow those strawmen away.  He wanted to know what the number 5 smelled like.  They must all read from the same script/prayer book.  From his own, homemade, definitions, he fabricates claims about Atheists like, “Also, most of them manage to confuse Islam with Catholicism and attack the one with descriptions of the other.”

Like a short row of dominoes, he set up six, sequential premises to prove God.  Premise 1: God must exist by necessity – therefore premise 2 – therefore premise 3 – therefore premise 4 – therefore premise 5 – therefore God exists.  If you begin your circular argument with an unfounded claim that God exists, of course you’ll end up with that as an unsupported conclusion.

If you start with the assumption that Hillary Clinton is running a child sex-trafficking ring out of the basement of a cheap pizza joint, of course you’ll prove that it’s tr….  Oh, wait.  That one could be investigated, and was proved false.  When I ran into Nietzsche, Adolph Hitler, Hillary Clinton, Democrats, and Atheists, all in the same sentence, I was sure of who and what he was.  He apparently named his Bible-thumping blog-site after his favorite superhero.

He wanted Atheists to admit that they couldn’t be absolutely, positively, 100% sure that no God exists, so that he could stick the thin edge of his Christian arguments in.  I find the likelihood of God/gods to be slightly less than the existence of a square circle, owned by a polygamous bachelor.  If he can produce one of those, I will help him locate and present his God.

He kept making blanket claims that, (All) Atheists say this, Atheists believe that, Atheists claim….  While some – a few confused, uneducated Atheists make unsupported statements, I have never, personally, encountered any Atheist who said what he implies that ALL Atheists do.  He writes that, By necessity, Atheists must be Nihilists, but when observed reality clearly contradicts his view, he merely inverts his claim, and insists that Atheists do not really exist.

My Dad told me the tale of the Ginchee Bird, which flies around in ever-decreasing circles, until it disappears up its own ass.  I wish some of these Apologists would disappear up their own asses.  They pull out enough shit.  There should be room.  Ah well, it was cheap entertainment.  All I learned was that they were both charter members of the Lying For Jesus Movement.

If they worked half as hard at proving their claims to be true, as they do to try to prove others wrong, they might not be quite so desperate, but my past history has shown that that result seems to be impossible. I think they know that, and don’t want to admit it – but that’s the same argument they use against Atheists.  Damn the counter-arguments!  Full assumption ahead.  😳

Dr. Who’s Questions

The Doctor (He doesn’t say, ‘of what.’) claims that he just wants to ask some respectful questions of Atheists – no trick or gotcha ones.  He wants to amass the information, and sift and sort it, to produce a published report.  When asked when he might submit it, and to whom, he was delightfully vague.

He and his wife were Atheists, until each of them had a revelation from the Christian God, and they became Jews For Jesus.  His questions natter on and on – and on, full of presuppositions and leading statements.  Another blogger graciously simplified the list, although I included part of his number six, for context and clarity.  I thought I’d have a go at them.

  • Is Your Atheism Based on Study or Experience? …

Yes!, to both.  As young as seven or eight, I regarded stories that started with “In The Beginning” to be no more believable than those that began, “Once Upon A Time.”  I didn’t realize until I became an adult myself, that other children, and adults, took them seriously.  I became curious enough to begin a long-term investigation.  I spent a great deal of time looking at arguments for or against God’s existence, and eventually had to conclude that there just wasn’t any evidence for God that stood up to examination.

  • Do You Have Purpose and Destiny? …

Yes.  I have had many ‘Purposes,” and will probably have more before I die, but each of them was created and affixed by me, or those close to me, not by some supernatural entity.  I believe that I have a destiny.  It’s just that I am not enough of a fortune-teller to see far enough into the future to get a clear glimpse of what it might be.

  • Does God Exist? …

This might seem a strange question to be asking of Atheists.  In the original long-winded version, he wanted Atheists to provide total, complete, 100% proof, that there was absolutely no chance that God exists.  This is the philosophical equivalent to home invasion.  There are almost no things that can be utterly proved not to exist.  He appeared to want a tiny gap, where he could wedge his definition of God into.  I consider the possibility of God existing, only slightly more likely than the existence of a married bachelor.

  • Can Science Explain the Origin of Life? …

Science has explained the origin of life!  There is one major, largely-accepted (by biologists and related scientists) theory, and a couple of minor variations.  They all entail the chemical soup present in early Earth seas, with geothermal energy and solar radiation fueling and mutating the chemical reactions, until self-replicating RNA strands evolved upward to cells and DNA.  All that free energy powered the increasing DNA complexity.

  • Have You Questioned Your Atheism? …

Constantly and continuously!  I have never been convinced that I can’t be wrong.  Over the years I have done considerable reading and study.  Now, with YouTube, I can watch debates and lectures.  Atheism is merely the lack of belief in God/gods – the failure by theists to provide sufficiently convincing evidence.  (See above) With all the research and investigation that I have done, I continue not to be convinced that God is guilty of existing.

  • Are You Materialistic? …
    Are you completely materialistic in your mindset, meaning, human beings are entirely physical, human consciousness is an illusion, and there is no spiritual realm of any kind?

First, a pedantic language lesson, I think that phrasing should be ‘are you a materialist?’. ‘Materialistic’ refers to someone who prioritizes obtaining money and possessions!  I believe that humans, and all else within our Universe, are material.  I don’t think it makes much sense to say that consciousness is an illusion.  I think a more accurate phrasing of the materialist position on consciousness would be that it’s the product of material things/physical laws.  I continue to see no evidence of a spiritual realm of any kind, except in the hopes and dreams of the gullible.  I do not believe in tarot, Ouija boards, crystals, ghosts, mind-reading, fortune-telling, or a miracle-producing God.

  • Would You Be Willing to Follow the God of the Bible?

It depends which part of the Bible you’re talking about when you say ‘God of the Bible’.

From reading the earlier part of the Old Testament, I remember a god laden with petty jealousy, orchestrating hideous mass deaths, with archaic views on rape and slavery and some strange gaps in his scientific knowledge. The existence of this god would be bad news.

In the later part of the Old Testament, I glimpsed a different and better kind of god; the god of Ezekiel 18 and similar passages, expecting us to take personal responsibility but also willing to see our virtues and our efforts and to judge us fairly. The existence of this god would be good news, and, yes, I would follow and honor him.

In the New Testament, we get the most hideous god of all; the one who condemns all non-Christians to an eternity of torment, who blames the Jews for sticking to the laws that He himself strictly instructed them to keep to forever, who expects us to overlook the ways he acted back in the early books, and who tries to convince us that all these things are really signs of great love and concern on his part. The existence of this god would be terrible news. And, to answer the question, I could never honor such a god, and while I suppose I’d follow him because ‘Or burn in hell’ isn’t really much of an option, it would never be willingly.

Eight Ways To Be Wrong About Atheists

The quickest and surest way, is to not actually engage with Atheists.  Don’t talk to them, debate them, or ask them questions.  Don’t listen to, or accept, their answers and explanations.  Just keep spouting groundless religious claims that you inherited from someone else.  Be like this guy, who had

Eight Reasons Not To Be An Atheist

  1. An atheist assigns himself to life with merely finite purposes

His first claim is full of the presupposition of choice and rebellion.  If indeed, God does not exist, then finite purposes are all that there are.  His further claim that even Atheists feel that there is something bigger than them – something outside them – still doesn’t prove that IT is God.  A little concrete evidence of His existence might change that.

  1. The atheist must also suppress the demands of logic

Again, we see the presupposition from Something complex must have been designed, to, A design requires a designer, so, The designer must have been God.  None of these three claims are necessarily true, and do not necessarily follow one another.  A large mirror, dropped on a concrete floor, will produce an amazingly complex result, with no designer.  Apologists like this don’t even understand Logic, unless it works in their favor.

  1. Yet, ironically, the atheist has to believe in miracles without believing in God

Here, he trots out the old, tired, often-refuted Kalam Cosmological Argument, saying that everything that begins to exist must have a cause.  Since he doesn’t have enough imagination, and scientific understanding, he can’t (and doesn’t want to) think of any alternative, so he plugs in God as the only option.

Physicists have posited several theories for the existence of the Universe.  Constant energy infusion into a bubble of the Meta-verse may have caused it to shit spit out our local representation.  Since Time only came into existence with the coalescence of Matter, there was never a Time when the Universe did not exist.  Therefore, it is possible for the Universe to have a finite past – yet to have existed infinitely – no God required.

  1. An atheist must also suppress all notions of morality

Why??!  Just because he says so??!  Most Atheists make no claims about morality, because it is a term that has been co-opted by Christians.  Atheists have ethics and empathy.  The Christian God of the Bible – the archetype of their moral values – not only permitted, but encouraged, murder, rape, torture, forced marriage, genocide, racism and slavery.  Good Christians and their morals clog prisons, rehab centers and divorce courts.  I want nothing to do with Christian morals.

  1. In fact, the atheist must conclude that evil is an illusion

So, if Atheism is valid, there are no real evils, just violations of human customs or conventions. How hard would it be to think of murderers as merely having bad manners?

Evil” is indeed, an illusion, one believed in by most Christians.  It does not exist as a distinct entity.  For any given situation, there are different possible series of actions.  Some will be more beneficial to an individual, and the Human race as a whole.  Others will reduce individual and group happiness and well-being.

Drinking battery acid – or Ivermectin – may not be “evil,” but it will not produce the most good.  Neither will murder.  It is far more than mere ‘bad manners.’  I know of no Atheist who would claim it was.  I am appalled that this Christian Apologist would do so.

  1. The atheist must also live with the arrogance of his position

His assertion that there is no God requires that he pretend to possess total knowledge.

That is why Apologists get so upset when Atheists insist that they simply don’t believe because they have not been presented with convincing evidence.  For the Christian, it’s like punching a fogbank, so they lie pretend that Atheists say things that most of us don’t.  For many Christians, their religion is their life.  Despite their protestations, they aren’t half as upset that we don’t believe in their God, as they are when they find that we don’t believe in them.

  1. The atheist must also deny the validity of historical proof

The extensive manuscript evidence of eyewitnesses to the resurrection is presented in an unbiased, authentic manner.

Yeah, right??!  Pull the other one.  Four Gospels that don’t agree with each other, and one author who wasn’t there, but who claims that 500 people saw the risen Christ – only – that’s all there is, one man’s claim.  There is no list of names, or where/how many places, this occurred.  There are not 500 sworn affidavits, just a vague assertion.  I couldn’t get someone convicted of double-parking with that quality of evidence.

  1. Finally, atheists must admit that humans are not importantly different from other animals

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen, that desperate, ego-driven need to feel special.  Humans are like, and different from, other animals in a variety of ways, and to a range of degrees.  Science is finding that species like whales and dolphins and apes and chimpanzees are remarkably human-like in many ways.  I’d like to drop him in the middle of the Serengeti, near a pride of hungry lions, and let him explain to them, just how important he is.

The atheist’s problem with belief in God is not an absence of evidence but suppression of it.
Citation needed!  Many well-known Atheists were priests, preachers, seminarians, and evangelicals.  Reputable polls show that, on average, Atheists know more about the Bible and the Christian faith, than most Christians do.  Their ‘evidence’ is not being suppressed.  It is being dismissed as unproven, and unconvincing.

Apologists Haven’t A Brain In Their Heads

THAT is MY BRAIN!

At least that’s what the office told me when they gave me the disk of pictures. I have no other pictures of my brain with which to compare, and I’ve never seen my brain in person so as to recognize it from these hazy black and white pictures which I’m told came from a big magnet. It remains entirely possible that the pictures on that disk are pictures of somebody else’s brain.

Or that this is a Xerox image of something made entirely of playdough.(sic) I can’t prove that it’s not.

It may not be my brain on the disk, and in fact may not be pictures of anybody’s head at all but may be computer-generated. It’s not impossible.  Maybe the people with problems that require a brain-scan are the only ones who have brains.

In modern America VERY few people have even seen the inside of ANY mammal skull so as to see that there is a brain inside, let alone any human heads.  The number of medical and scientific personnel who claim to have seen inside a human head is a VAST minority of the total.  They except(sic) that we have sent what three or four rovers all the way to Mars and yet they don’t believe in God.

Atheists say that they have never seen God and that I have never seen God and they demand evidence.  They believe electrons exist, having never seen one. They believe the wind exists having never seen it. They believe gravity exists having never seen it. They believe in all kinds of things they have never seen. You know why? Because they’re not really skeptics. There are just some things they don’t want to believe, so they pretend that they are skeptics, when in fact, they are just rebellious sinners.

Except…. that the correct word is accept.  I would think that you would be familiar with one of the most important words of your faith system, considering the number of things that you are expected to blindly accept.  Perhaps you have never seen it in print, and are just taking someone else’s word for it.

Every med student in every medical college in the USA, Canada, and probably around the world, must assist in the dissection of a human cadaver.  The skull is sawed open.  The brain is removed and examined.  The same is true for most veterinary students, with a dog or cat.  This alone consists of tens of thousands of people each year.  And then there are abattoirs and meat-packing plants….

We can also include pathologists, and coroners and their assistants, and police officers and paramedics, who, too often, get to see human brains that didn’t need MRIs.  Until one of them finds a skull with no brain in it, I’m going to assume they all do, with the possible exception of yours.  They are a minority – but hardly a VAST one – totalling several million people.

While actually seeing God would be a good start to accepting His existence, not all evidence need be visual.  Do Christians have Faith that electrons exist?  Atheists accept that they do because they can see the actions they cause; televisions glow, cell phones communicate with each other, and ovens get hot.

Atheists (and everyone else) can feel the wind blow, and see its effects, from tornadoes, to kids’ kites flying, to wind turbines.  We don’t need to see the wind to know that it exists.  I can see gravity working every time I drop something.  It will accelerate toward the center of the Earth (or any other celestial body).

On Earth, its speed of fall will increase by 9.8 meters/second/squared.  It has done so each and every observed and measured time.  Only when a dropped pen starts drifting upward will I doubt the existence of gravity.  You can tell me that God makes my light bulbs shine or that angels hold my feet (and every other object) to the ground.  I will rely on reasonable expectations based on a history of testable and repeatable actions.

I will believe the hypotheses of reputable scientists, who have shown their work, rather than the far less coherent and parsimonious claims that Christians make.  I will believe in space/time curvature rather than angels.  Atheists often say that they have not been presented with sufficiently convincing evidence, but evidence is information which convinces, or tends to convince, regarding any given matter.  If it does not convince to some degree, it is not ‘evidence,’ it is just another unverified claim.

I want to believe the most true things, and the fewest false things as possible.  Despite your desperate attempt at mind-reading and fortune-telling, I am not a rebellious sinner!  After 2000 years of asking Christians for evidence, the best they seem to be able to come up with is, ‘You just have to have faith, and you won’t know until you die.’  That is unacceptable to me – no sin involved.  👿

’22 A To Z Challenge – I

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not that I’m stubborn.  It’s just that I’m usually right.  I am urged to consider others’ opinions.  I do!  I consider many of them stupid and unworkable.  My darling wife, whose vocabulary is limited to romance novel levels, would not call me

Intransigent

refusing to agree or compromise; uncompromising; inflexible
obstinately maintaining an attitude

Nor

Intractable

not easily controlled or directed; not docile or manageable; stubborn; obstinate:
difficult to influence or direct

I don’t think that I am smarter than others.  It is, perhaps, just that I pay more attention to reality.  I only have a high school diploma, and some work-related post-secondary training.  I am constantly amazed by the ignorance and misunderstanding of people with college and university degrees.

One day, at work, four of us were playing cards at lunch, and the radio played an advertisement referencing the legal code of Habburami.   Two of us perked up, and simultaneously shouted, “Hammurabi!”  A co-worker asked, “How do you know?”  I answered, ”Because we paid attention in class.”

Religion is not the only reason that people believe and say foolish, stupid things.  The education system in North America, more and more, resembles a sewage treatment plant, with about the same type and quality of output.  Something is rotten in the state of Denmark Mississippi, New Jersey, etc.

I am amenable to being honestly and intelligently guided, but I refuse to be blindly led.  I am willing – anxious – to change my opinion if I am offered solid evidence, and well-thought-out presentations.  I will not take seriously, any opinion, from someone who asks things like, “Do Atheists have children?” – or Flat-Earth-type fools who claim that, “Australia is a lie.  It’s not real.  If it was, (sic) people would fall off.”

Tempest In A Theological Teapot

I recently read a rant about gender reassignment.  https://shadowtolight.wordpress.com/2022/03/22/one-simple-question-for-woke-atheists/  The author, and six or eight of his testosterone-infused followers had their Theistic jock-straps in a bunch, because Thomas had become Lia.  He titled it One Simple Question For Woke Atheists.  I asked how the title had anything to do with the existence of Atheists, or God.

I got back:  Atheists insist “there is no evidence for god.” Entailed in their atheism is the notion that all beliefs about reality should be supported by convincing evidence. And, personal feelings, personal testimony, personal experience, intuition, etc. do NOT count as evidence.

Woke people believe Thomas is a woman because he, I mean she, says so and if you dare to disagree with Thomas, it is because you are an evil, transphobic, bigot.

I’m looking to see if the Woke atheism is a coherent, reasonable position or whether it is inherently irrational due to its arbitrary, make-it-up-as-you-go, essence. That is, either come up with another way to define atheism or provide the evidence that Lia Thomas is a woman. Of course, I already know that Woke atheism is irrational, so I’m just illustrating it.

Atheism is the lack of belief in God, or gods.  Everything else is something else!  There is no “Woke Atheism”!  There is a Woke point of view, and it is shared by Atheists and Christians alike.  People who accept Atheism, are also likely to support Lia, but there are many Atheists who do not.  Conversely, there are many ‘Good Christians’ who would.  Woke or not, this is not “an Atheist position,” any more than Westboro Baptist Church protesting at a serviceman’s funeral, is a Christian one.

The difference between believing in God, and believing in Thomas as a woman is that, God is external, and Lia is internal.  God is subjective, and Lia is objective.

If God exists, He is outside: outside each believer, outside the Universe, outside Nature, and outside reality.  If you claim that He is real, you’d better come with some solid evidence.  All your faith, and belief, and claims, and hopes, and wants, and needs are not going to magick Him, or my acceptance, into existence.  Nothing is made-up-as-we-go.

Personal feelings, personal testimony, personal experience, intuition, etc. do NOT count as evidence, when applied to something outside yourself.  They are, however, the only valid way to know what is happening in anyone’s mind.  Lia could state that she is a Cincinnati Reds fan, a non-smoker, a vegetarian, and likes heavy metal music, and you have to accept that.  And if she says that she feels more like a girl than a guy despite the plumbing, just as she feels more like voting for Biden than Trump – that’s an objective proof.  You have to accept it, even if you are a dyed-in-the-wool Republican.  She is, and will remain, the best judge of what she thinks, feels, and believes.  She identifies as a female personality, trapped in a male body.

I and other Atheists are approached by Apologists demanding that we Prove Atheism, or Prove Atheism is true.  They seem to feel that, like Christianity, Atheism should have an all-encompassing worldview, with tenets and dogma and scripture, and leaders.  That is not the case.  It is a position on one single point – the lack of belief in a God, or gods.  Atheists have not been presented with sufficiently convincing evidence.  I can quickly and accurately ‘Prove’ my Atheism.  I do not accept your ridiculous claims about your imaginary friend.  That is honest and true, and objectively valid.

Judge-Mental

I can tell a judgemental person – just by looking at them.

Just when you might think that ‘Good Christians’ have reached the limit of the depths that they will sink to – someone starts digging.

I recently read a Christian’s blog-post.  Not an Apologist debater – merely a denizen of the American Bible-belt, publishing from just this side of the Westboro Baptist Church.

He went down-town to conduct some business, and saw a family of four get out of a car.  He just knew by looking at them, that they weren’t a Christian family.  The 7-9 year old daughter was wearing yoga pants – and he didn’t approve of yoga pants.

The mother had a Karen haircut – and you know what those Karens are like.  No, I don’t!  I don’t even know what a “Karen haircut” looks like.

I reached his post through an Atheism tag, although the word Atheism was not used in the entire article.  He very carefully skirted making that accusation.  He wrote, “I might be wrong, but I don’t think that I’m being too judgemental.”  Yes, you are, and with no proof or justification!  😯

What was most disturbing was that this was far from an isolated viewpoint.  The post was an hour old when I reached it, and already it had 7 likes from other self-appointed cultural/religious gatekeepers who agreed with him.

He may have been from Arkansas.  In a related (actually, two) story, 29 years ago, Arkansas banned yoga.  I don’t believe that the ban is state-wide, only in the schools.  🙄  We can’t allow our children to be exposed to that Asian voodoo stuff.  It might make them think hard enough to question Jesus.  All that stretching is way too sensual, and some of them poses might incite lust.  It’s a good thing that Sears went bankrupt.  At least they’re not mailing out those pornographic catalogues anymore.

You can mail all your dismay, disbelief, and disapproval to Archon c/o Archon’s Den.  I will mix it with liberal doses of kitty-litter siftings, and forward it where it will do the most good.

Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow – will be another April day.  See you there.  😀

Creating God

Define the God you believe in, and tell me why you believe.

For any debate or discussion between Atheist and Christian, this is a good idea.  It assures that both parties are talking about the same thing.

At no other time is it a good idea to just let each person define their deity.  If God exists, He/She/It/They are far too vast and varied for a mere human mind to comprehend.  This is why Christians are often disappointed when Atheists fail to believe, because the claims are impossible, or internally contradictory.  There just does not seem to be any way to present a coherent definition of GOD.”

The first claim that many Christians make about their definition of God, is that (it’s almost always a) He is the Creator of all things.  Even if there were some evidence that was true, it still doesn’t make the Creator, a “God”.  Even if some entity caused it, it may have been accidental, and unintentional – or it may have been intentional, but irrelevant, like a young boy with an ant farm.

No way does the mere claim of a Creator, turn it into a God.  A God wants something – both for us and from us.  He would want to give us life, and a universe to exist in.  He wants worship, obedience, belief and faith.  He wants to give us morals, and rules to live by.  A Creator wants and needs none of that.

In my opinion, Deism is the most useless, contradictory belief position.  A Deist believes in a Creator, but does not believe in a personal God.  A Deist believes in “The Watchmaker God,” an entity of some sort which produced our Universe, wound it up like a watch, with all its physical rules, and then just sits back and watches it – like the lad above, with the ant-farm, an uninvolved observer of His creation, whether unwilling or unable to affect us or our situations.

An invisible God is indistinguishable from a non-existent God.  A ”Creator which performs no miracles, who answers no prayers, who gives nothing to us, and asks nothing of us, quickly becomes indistinguishable from that non-existent God.  Most Deists don’t believe in Heaven or Hell, salvation, or any sort of life after death.  I’ve got a pet rock from the ’80s that can do that much.  Any Theist who wants non-believers to accept claims of his particular pet Deity, had better be ready to offer more than a ‘Creator.’  He’ll need evidence of some sort, of supernatural involvement in the natural world.

I don’t know even how the supernatural could be viewed, recorded or measured, ‘naturally.’  Christians often ask Atheists what sort of evidence would convince them of the existence of a God.  The short answer??  Empirical!  The conversation will not even begin until they can present a verifiable, repeatable occurrence that can not be shown to have a natural explanation.