Monday, March 31, 2014

Atheist Hate Speech and Mental Disorder

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 Peter Boghossian

Philosopher Randal Rauser acuses Peter Boghossian (see AW last Friday) of hate speech. He quotes Boghossian from his book where he urges that the DSM (bible of psychiatric therapy) include religious "delusions" as mental illness.
“We must recognize religion as brainwashing. We must recognize the (hyper) religious as mentally damaged.” - See more at:

“There is perhaps no greater contribution one could make to contain and perhaps even cure faith than removing the exemption that prohibits classifying religious delusions as mental illness. The removal of religious exemptions from the DSM would enable academicians and clinicians to bring considerable resources to bear on the problem of treating faith, as well as on the ethical issues surrounding faith-based interventions. In the long term, once these treatments and this body of research is refined, results could then be used to inform public health policies designed to contain and ultimately eradicate faith.” Peter Boghossian A Manual for Creating Atheists (Kindle Locations 3551-3555).[1]

Does this mean that all religious believers would be open to the charge of mental illness. It seems so. Rauser finds this to be hate speech. The end goal of bringing rleigious people under the label of mental illness is to "eradicate faith from society altogether."[2] Rauser points out that this qualifies as hate speech under the Canadian Criminal code:

“We must recognize religion as brainwashing. We must recognize the (hyper) religious as mentally damaged.” - See more at:

Marginal note: Advocating genocide
  • 318. (1) Every one who advocates or promotes genocide is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years.
  • Marginal note:Definition of “genocide”
    (2) In this section, “genocide” means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy in whole or in part any identifiable group, namely,
    • (a) killing members of the group; or
    • (b) deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction.
  • Marginal note:Consent
    (3) No proceeding for an offence under this section shall be instituted without the consent of the Attorney General.
  • Definition of “identifiable group”
    (4) In this section, “identifiable group” means any section of the public distinguished by colour, race, religion, ethnic origin or sexual orientation.
  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 318;
  • 2004, c. 14, s. 1.
Marginal note:Public incitement of hatred
  • 319. (1) Every one who, by communicating statements in any public place, incites hatred against any identifiable group where such incitement is likely to lead to a breach of the peace is guilty of
    • (a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years; or
    • (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction.
  • Marginal note:Wilful promotion of hatred
    (2) Every one who, by communicating statements, other than in private conversation, wilfully promotes hatred against any identifiable group is guilty of
    • (a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years; or
    • (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction.[3]

Boghossian is not the only one to say this. American Atheist President David silverman said “We must recognize religion as brainwashing. We must recognize the (hyper) religious as mentally damaged.”[4]
“We must recognize religion as brainwashing. We must recognize the (hyper) religious as mentally damaged.” - See more at:“We must recognize religion as brainwashing. We must recognize the (hyper) religious as mentally damaged.”
Bill Maher called religion a neurological disorder. Sam Harris wrote “it is difficult to imagine a set of beliefs more suggestive of mental illness than those that lie at the heart of many of our religious traditions.” Face book groups claiming religion is mental disorder, according to Steadman "boast hundreds of members."[5] Not all atheists go along with the trend. Steadman himself, Humanist Chaplin at Harvard, calls for understanding.[6] He presents five reasons why one should not use this approach or call religious thinking mental illness. He had previously called for Christians and theists not to say that atheists are immoral. He calls for meeting each other on common ground.[7]

Steadman recognizes that a body of academic and scientific research links religions with well being, not with mental illness. Steadman writes:
In fact, empirical evidence sometimes points to the opposite conclusion,” Yaden [researcher at the university of Pennsylvania's positive policy research center] said, citing the work of Dr. Ken Pargament. “When it comes to facilitating mental health, empirical data demonstrates that religious people have more positive emotion, more meaning in life, more life satisfaction, cope better with trauma, are more physically healthy, are more altruistic and socially connected, and are not diagnosed with mental illness more than other people.”[8]
I have also quote heavily from sources making mention of these things.

[Noble, Kathleen D. (1987). ``Psychological Health and the Experience of Transcendence.'' The Counseling Psychologist, 15 (4), 601-614.]

Transpersonal Childhood Experiences of Higher States of Consciousness: Literature Review and Theoretical Integration (unpublished paper 1992)
Jayne Gackenback
"Scientific interest in the mystical experience was broadened with the research on psychoactive drugs. The popular belief was that such drugs mimicked either mystical states and/or schizophrenic ones (reviewed in Lukoff, Zanger & Lu, 1990). Although there is likely some physiological similarity as well as phenomenological recent work has shown clear differences. For instance, Oxman, Rosenberg, Schnurr, Tucker and Gala (1988) analyzed 66 autobiographical accounts of schizophrenia, hallucinogenic drug experiences, and mystical ecstasy as well as 28 control accounts of important personal experiences. They concluded that the: "subjective experiences of schizophrenia, hallucinogenic drug-induced states, and mystical ecstasy are more different from one another than alike" (p. 401).

(Ibid) "Relatedly, Caird (1987) found no relationship between reported mystical experience and neuroticism, psychoticism and lying while Spanos and Moretti (1988) found no relationship between a measure of mystical experience and psychopathology."
a. Trend toward positive view among psychologists.

Spiriutal Emergency


"Offsetting the clinical literature that views mystical experiences as pathological, many theorists (Bucke, 1961; Hood, 1974, 1976; James, 1961; Jung, 1973; Laski, 1968; Maslow, 1962, 1971; Stace, 1960; Underhill, 1955) have viewed mystical experiences as a sign of health and a powerful agent of transformation."

b. Most clinicians and clinical studies see postive.
"Results of a recent survey (Allman, et al,. 1992) suggest that most clinicians do not view mystical experiences as pathological. Also, studies by several researchers have found that people reporting mystical experiences scored lower on psychopathology scales and higher on measures of psychological well-being than controls (Caird, 1987; Hood, 1976, 1977, 1979; Spanos and Moretti, 1988)".
c. Incidence rate suggests no pathology.
"Numerous studies assessing the incidence of mystical experience (Back and Bourque, 1970; Greeley, 1974, 1987; Hay and Morisy, 1978; Hood, 1974, 1975, 1977; Thomas and Cooper, 1980) all support the conclusion that 30-40% of the population do have such experiences, suggesting that they are normal rather than pathological phenomena. In addition, a recent survey (Allman et al., 1992) has demonstrated that the number of patients who bring mystical experiences into treatment is not insignificant. Psychologists in full-time practice were asked to estimate the percentage of their clients over the past 12 months who had reported a mystical experience. The 285 respondents indicated that of the 20,670 clients seen during the past year, the incidence of mystical experience was 4.5%. This clearly challenges the GAP report on Mysticism, which claims that "mystical experiences are rarely observed in psychotherapeutic practice" (Group for Advancement of Psychiatry, 1976, p. 799).
2) Not the restult of deprivation or fantasy; mystics tend to be successful people.

Council on Spiritual Practices

State of Unitive Consciousness
"Furthermore, Greeley found no evidence to support the orthodox belief that frequent mystic experiences or psychic experiences stem from deprivation or psychopathology. His ''mystics'' were generally better educated, more successful economically, and less racist, and they were rated substantially happier on measures of psychological well-being. "

3) Mystisicm offers therapeutic insights.

"...Within the Western model we recognize and define psychosis as a suboptimal state of consciousness that views reality in a distorted way and does not recognize that distortion. It is therefore important to note that from the mystical perspective our usual state fits all the criteria of psychosis, being suboptimal, having a distorted view of reality, yet not recognizing that distortion. Indeed from the ultimate mystical perspective, psychosis can be defined as being trapped in, or attached to, any one state of consciousness, each of which by itself is necessarily limited and only relatively real.'' [-- page 665 ) [Roger Walsh (1980). The consciousness disciplines and the behavioral sciences: Questions of comparison and assessment. American Journal of Psychiatry, 137(6), 663-673.

See Also: Lukoff, David & Francis G. Lu (1988). ``Transpersonal psychology research review: Topic: Mystical experiences.'' Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, 20 (2), 161-184. Charles T. Tart, Psi: Scientific Studies of the Psychic Realm, p. 19.[9]

I have seen over a dozen studies showing that religious experience is not mental illness.

We can see the hate speech is growing. Rauser quotes Boghossian as saying: “we should no more allow parents to teach their children to believe, for example, in the literal truth of the Bible, or that the planets rule their lives, than we should allow parents to knock their children’s teeth out or lock them in a dungeon.” That's pretty chilling. People are advocating banning the teaching of religion from children, that's a major quashing of civil liberties. I don't think we would have much trouble linking that to hate speech.


[1] Boghossian quoted in Randal Rauser, "Is Peter Boghossian guilty of Hate Speech?" Randal Rauser, 1/22/14 (blog) on line
accessed March 30, 2014.
Rauser is a systematic theologian of the Evangelical camp. He earned his Ph.D. in theology for King's College, London. Associate professor of historical theology at Edmonton.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Chris Steadman, "Five Reasons Atheists should't call religion Mental Illness," Religious News Service. Feb 24, 2014. online accessed March 30, 2014.

[5] Ibid.

[6] Ibid.

[7] ___________, "In 2014 let's stop saying 'atheists are immoral,' and 'believers are stupid.'" Religious News Service, Jan 08, 2014. accessed March 30, 2014.

[8] Steadman "five Reasons," Op cit.

[9] this is an amalgam of a lot of studies. It can all be referenced on my website Doxa.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Atheists Call for "Eradication" of "mind virus" (belief in God): Is it a Clear and Present Danger Yet?

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John Loftus on the Debuncting Christianity Blog lauds a "new Atheist" radical who reveals a real Draconian agenda for dealing with Christianity. Now I don't believe that this represents even the majority of new atheism. I don't believe that all of atheism is a conspiracy or that all atheists are full of hate or any such thing. There is a hate group segment of their community, and this is surely it. That they are getting more brazen I think is a sign that they are more desperate.

This is the title of the post by Loftus

Boghossian is Very Serious; He's a Crusader, a Radical, and I Like It!

I have written a few posts about Peter Boghossian's book, A Manual for Creating Atheists.To read other posts in review of his brilliant book click on the tag below. In this last one I want to highlight how much of a crusader he is, a radical, and how much I like it. He is dead serious. We know this from his radical remedies for the present faith virus pandemic.

In his final chapter titled "Containment Protocols" we see this clearly. He utilizes the theme of Darrel Ray's book, God Virus, The: How Religion Infects Our Lives and Culture, very effectively for this.

Since religious faith is a mind virus that can infect others in our society, then in order to help get rid of it we must get serious about containing it as we try to eradicate it.
"Containment?" That has a pretty ominous ring to it. One question up front if you have to create atheists that means they aer not atheists already right? So they are advocating manipulation and doing the same kinds of things they accuse Christians of doing. What makes them any better? Well we Chrsitians don't talk about containing any group of people. What does that mean? let's see....

By the way, "mind virus?" Is that a technical term? What psychiatry text book did he get that term from? Is it an actual germ. It's funny when I have argued that atheist use the concept of "meme" to accuse their opponents of being diseased they deny that it's that kind of model.


His remedies are radical, but important and needed.
Loftus plays the fascist card. It's need, we must set up the camps hu?

1) Use the word "faith" only in a religious context. He is calling for a change in how we use language. This is something David Eller has advocated as well as myself in our books. Boghossian: "It matters what words we use. Certain words trap us into a make-believe picture of life--one that is false and misleading" (p. 211). We should not say we have faith that the sun will rise tomorrow, or other such things, where the overwhelming probabilities lead us to know without much doubt at all. You can see a list of these words in a 2009 talk I gave for the annual meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature, right here.
I don't actually hear the term "faith" used that much in a religious context. Why is that any different than using "theoretical" for imaginary scenarios like possible worlds and multiverses?

2) Stigmatize faith-based claims like racist claims. He argues we should deploy the models of the civil rights and the women's rights movements. Basically it should be politically incorrect to argue something based on faith. He aptly quotes Sam Harris here: "People who harbor strong convictions without evidence belong at the margins of society."
Here we see a truly sick mind coming into focus. Martin Luther King was a minister of Christ. By this guy's stadnards he was insane and had a mind virus. But of course he doesn't dare say that. He has the audacity and mendacity to try link atheist poison with civil rights, and belief in love and truth (Christian belief) to "racism." That is such a lie! When  did we try to make atheists sit at the back of the bus? We never passed Jim Crow laws to keep atheists in the role of second class citizens. We never lynched atheists. That they want to do these things to us is ironic becuase I've always said their term "xian" is their version of the N word. They are as filled with hate for Christians as white racists were for black people. This proves it. At least this segment of the atheist community.

3) Parrhesia: Speaking truth in the face of danger. We should not sit at the back of the segregated bus, so to speak. "Be honest. Be direct. Be blunt. Be unapologetic....Don't tone it down or talk baby talk....Instead, tell people exactly what you think and why you think it. Take a punch and give a punch. Speak truth in the place of danger be a part of Team Parrhesia" (p. 214).
By that frank admission they put themselves at the back of the bus. No one tried to force them there.

4) Stay informed. He even recommends reading faith peddlers like Alvin Plantinga and William Lane Craig. Boghossian is so radical he recommends against buying their books new, but rather getting them second hand, so they don't profit from us in any way. 
 Faith peddelers like the greatest living metaphysician who was given the mantle of Charles Hartshorne and is a recognized expert in modal logic. This guy doesn't know what modal logic is.

5) Contribute. Do what you can. Use whatever talents you have in this cause. "Be active. Get involved. Volunteer. Vote." Contribute financially as well, to good atheist/skeptical organizations who are making a difference.

6) Experiment and publicize. "Develop your own strategies to fight the faith virus." Then publicize them in the appropriate medium, like books, magazines, podcasts, videos, documentaries, plays, editorials, songs, art works and so on.

7) Form academic-community partnerships. These partnerships take many forms. Partner with like-minded people to be more effective.
Is he trying to say they should keep Christians out of higher education?
8) Treat faith as a public health crisis. Two words: "contain" and "eradicate." We must do this with ethical and Constitutional concerns in mind, he says. Rather, "interventions need to be designed that counter the spread" of the virus. Our "containment strategy should promote the 'value' of believing on the basis of evidence."

Now we see the goal in sight. This is where it's heading. Not merely contain as said but also elminated. "eradicated?" In what way? Does he mean just convince people with logic? But apprently they are growing desperate because we don't buy their logic so it's clear they mean something else.

9) Financially cripple purveyors of false epistemologies, especially religious institutions. Take away their tax exempt status. Hell yeah! While Boghossian isn't hopeful that can be done in America anytime soon, "Ultimately, the tax-exempt status of religious organizations must be removed."

Financially crippling is a pretty serious thing. He's really dreaming big if he thinks they are going to wield he power to change the tax code against belief in God. The 3% freinge group (in fact only a segment of that) is going to wrest the tax code from 80% of the population? In fact 90% believe in God.

10) Create skeptical (atheist) children. He makes no apologies for this bold suggestion, saying, "It may seem odd: raising a child so she doesn't hold preposterous metaphysical beliefs. Strange indeed, but also vital." What he means is that "it is important to develop within our children the "attitudinal disposition to be skeptical."
They so contorting about what they allow to go on inside other people's minds. Irony of Ironies, O IR_ON_Y! the so called "free thinkers" not so free are they? They actually think they have the right to decide what you can believe and what your child is permitted to believe. They want to determine matters of philosophy and questions about reality and construct your right to think about reality. You would think these intellectually superior all knowing self appointed intellectuals would know something about history.

This is the kicker!

11) Finally, remove the religious exemption for delusion from the 'Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders' (DSM). He says, "There is perhaps no greater contribution one could make to contain and perhaps even cure faith than removing the exemption that prohibits classifying religious delusions as mental illness." For the reasons why he makes this statement you'll have to read them yourselves. At the very least, faith should be listed as a cognitive bias everywhere cognitive biases are listed.

He is actually saying that he wants belief in God to classified as an actual mental illness! It's not enough to just put of society agaisnt belief we have to close off the possibility of anyone wondering about it ever again by saying it's insane. That's so stupid! So narrow minded. That's far more narrow minded than racist garbage or anything a mad dog cone head ever thought of short of lynching. Why? Because it closes off all possibility of ever thinking for oneself again. All they have to do is declair anything you think as pre condition for belief. "People who want lower taxes tended to believe in God." So wanting lower taxes is a sign that yu might be wondering if there could be a God, which would mean yu are insane. In fact anyone who votes against the atheist candidate has to be thinking about belief in God so voting against their agenda is s a sure sign of mental illness.

Not understanding what forces of fascism and control are being unleashed here is just stupidity. Do we stop with Christianity or all beilef? Or what pantheism? Is that a danger becuase it might lead to theism?  The slipper slope potential is enormous. Who they hell do they think they are? What would give them the right to determine what people can wonder about? What could possibly give the arrogance to think they are so certain of their nonsense that is deserves to be enshrined as the definition of sanity?

This DSM "Bible" of psychiatry has said that S/M is not mental illness and has removed it from that definition.
on Wiki
In 1994, the American Psychiatric Association responded by modifying the denotative criteria defining “sadism” and “masochism” in the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV); thus, consensual sadomasochistic behavior no longer is considered a sexual disorder. Furthermore, in the textual revision of the DSM-IV TR (2000), sadomasochistic behavior is a sexual and mental disorder if the patient “has acted on these urges with a non-consenting person” and if “the urges, sexual fantasies, or behaviors cause marked distress or interpersonal difficulty”.[9][10] Elsewhere, in 1995, Denmark became the first country to delete “sadomasochism” from its medical disorders system of classification.[11]

This clown is actually saying that S/m is more normal and healthy than belief in God? "The "Janus Report on Sexual Behavior," one of the premiere academic surveys of sex practices, found in 1993 that 14 percent of men and 11 percent of women have had some sexual experience with sadomasochism." (ABC News). While 90% of Americans believe in God. That's an appeal to popularity but it does mean its too common to be thought of as a mental probelm. This guy has no data he has no backing form any psychiatric organization. Clinicians are more likely now to say that religious experience is good for you. The Allman study showed that half the clinicians have religious experience themselves and more than that say it helps their patients get better.

This lunatic is willing to alter the work of psychiatric authority  just becuase he loses arguments about philosophy to theists! That should be the definition of mentally ill!

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Dawkins says:

As an urgently needed counter to this tried-and-true tradition of religious evangelism, A Manual for Creating Atheists offers the first-ever guide not for talking people into faith--but for talking them out of it.

On CARM the idiot Deist who has been quoted here many times, chimes in to say he's "100%" in agreement.

I agree 100% with his position. If anyone has read my posts here, they will see that I don't beat around the bush or "play nice" with the Christians. They think they should get a pass, and this thinking is furthered by society doing exactly that. Danny of America talks about scoffers and scoffing as if that's a bad thing. His intent is to stigmatize non believers and ward off attacks on foolish beliefs by saying anyone who would challenge warped beliefs are scoffers.

For Danny and others, who want to use the word scoffer, have at it. I'm proud to wear that title, and I wear it with honor. I will no more discuss a resurrection as if it actually happened than I would a claim that Jesus is orbiting the Halle Bopp comet. IO refuse to give the Christians an inch on their contentions that homosexuality is a choice, and will continue to scoff at their ignorance on this topic. I will not give them the latitude of trying to contend that Jesus abolished OT law, when it clearly says he did NOT.

We should not continue to let them get away with their chicanery, double speak, obfuscation and crazy claims. They are ruinous to society. Let them have God. Let them win that argument, but never, ever, ever let them contend a man rose from the dead while zombies rose from their graves, and that a personal God will do stuff for them cause they believe, and non believers go to hell. These are crazy time thoughts that dumb down humans, and are unhealthy for society. The reason they have been able to get away with it for long is that society didn't scoff them.

Not let them "get away with it?" With what? Having their own ideas? Thinking for themselves?  These guys said I was such a lunatic for saying that atheism was a movement. they aer talking about eradicating belief (or is it the believers too?) and controlling what people are allowed to believe, but I was just peranoid think they have a movement!

Deist is so tired losing arguments he's ready to try to fascism to force people to see things his way. He's so sure he's right he thinks he has the right to suspend free thought, but when we are so sure we are right that makes us insane.

What's more inane is this guy calls himself "Deist" he claims to believe in God in some sense, but then he says supports "100%" making belief in God a definition of mentally ill.

I don't think there is any immediate danger. I don't think these guys could get a majority of people to follow them to a free breakfast. They aer a tiny minority it's much more likely that society is in danger from the religoius right lunatics who have the ear of the public and make up a sizable faction. In fact I wish we could lock that group in a room, see who comes out.Yet the Church should be aware of what these guys are doing. After all if they were so secrative about having a movement what is this guy not telling us about his plans?

This represents another stage in Atheists shutting down dialogue. They will create hostilities and close off the ability to have a dialogue and then blame theists for not being forthcoming or able to support their position. The best thing we can do now to counter this stuff is to keep dialogue going.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

More Atheist Obfuscation on the Religious Experience Studies.

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Here's another ridiculous free for all with the great minds on carm. This is about the 200 studies I talk about that show that religious experience is very good for, it changes your life dramatically for the better, than people who have these religious experiences do better than those who don't (including atheists) and that such experience is not mental issues or delusion. If that  was allowed to stand 90% of atheist assumptions would be blown away. It's no wonder they would do anything to deny them validity.

Once again, without having read a single study they talk like they know all about them, they mock and ridicule them for silly things while giving no valid methodological attack:

So, Meta's 200 studies that support his claims have come up again. Here: I asked him to provide links to the studies and he reacted with what appears to be anger, stating that he had already done this. I would have thought that the best way to react to this (and really put me in my place) would be to post a link to where he detailed the studies.

I have been involved in trying to get Meta to provide links to these studies before and as far as I am aware he has never provided a full list. I know that he has provided a couple of examples in the past but if you are going to claim 200 studies then you really need to provide a sizable portion of that 200 to be taken seriously. Also, the nature of his reaction leads me to the unfortunate hypothesis that he doesn't in fact have 200 studies that support his claims - if he did then he would just simply post a link to the list and then it would be my job to demonstrate that his studies don't support his conclusions. As he didn't, and reacted with what I saw as anger, I think I have a good case for my hypothesis.

In short, Meta, I am willing to go through the studies that you claim to have if you post a list. I have a few weeks between contracts coming up - once my current contract ends next week - and I have access to a University Library so I can get to pretty much any study that I need to. So, if you can provide me with a list of the studies I will start looking into them and doing the necessary research for me to be able to fully understand them.

Meta: He issued the very same challenge two years ago. I gave him a biboliogrphay and he never did a damn thing with it. I have had a biboliogrpaphy up for years, with most of the studies on it. It also contians some artilce that are not studies.

This whole controversy is based upon half truths. I have never refused to "put up" a study. Look what they are asking. most of these studies were done in the 70s and 80s and not many of them are on the net, those that are usually cost money to see. I refuse to type  a whole study into a text box. I've done everything else short of that to show them what to look for. The point is they refuse to accept the responsibility to get the studies themselves. They want to pretend like if I don't put the study in the text box then it doesn't exist. That's clearly just an excuse to dismiss the studies.

this is a post I made to MikeWC on another thread It's linked but it's an imporant summary of the history of these discussion about the various studies on this board.


the charge that "he refuses to put them all on the board" one of the first things they said about the studies when I first started talking about them years ago. I've answered over and over and OVER and OVER. here it is again. again the pretend the answer was never given.

Originally Posted by MikeWC View Post
Meta, you should just settle this once and for all. Pick, say, the strongest 10% and make the texts available. Give us PDFs if they are behind paywalls, links if they are not.Otherwise, stop it with this variation on the ever-weak "no sign but the sign of Jonah" junk.
 First of all, I have never argued anytying about the sign of Jonah. Second:

that's silly. I have done that before many times. everything I put up something that I work no a lot with a bunch of evidence you just refuse to read it.

I worked for Days on a paper why Tillich is not really anti-supernatural and posted he whole thing in the text box. noe of you would read it. it was right there in front of yiour faces.

if you were willing to read the material you wild go get it.

*I have given you the sources on every study. Except the Hood studies and it's easy to see his vita and get them.

* Teabagsalad ask for a short bib of the top sources he was going to look them all up and show how bad they all are. nothing ever came of it.

*that's not hte only time I've done that. I've given that short big and the full big both many many times. no one every does it.

*People have found, or looked up or gotten whole studies about three times. everyone of them says the M scale is good. none of them say it's bad none of them say Hood is no good none of them say religious experience is bad. no one cares. It did not mean a thing to anyone.

*one of those was the Carid study, Backup paid to get it and put it up. We went round and round. The conclusion said the M scale works but he went over and over trivial side bar stuff trying to make it say it's not good.

* one of those was good Spanos an Moretti, Royce did that trip. It went on for 10 threads and never ended. The whole time Spanos and Morettie said the M scale works, they did not say it's bad, they did not say reilgious experience is bad. they were talking about a minor minor aspect. they trying to justify their studies by saying Hood didn't deal wit the negatives. they never said that means M scale is no good. they were just saying "it doesn't deal with negatives so we will."

I argued negatives are going to be very very small percentage. they also said the negatives aren't caused by mystical experience they are associated via the people who have both. Royce tired to blow that up into a major methodology indictment of the M scale. that went on endlessly into I found a study saying the percentage of negatives was from 4-9% no more. several studies mentioned by that study had it at 4%. So that proved my point and it all died down.

* Allman study I put up (link) becasue I found it became available. I said up front it's not a major study its not crucial to my work. It backs up a couple of minor points but it's an example of a study. some people acted like was the major disproof that destroyed the 200.

Bottom line: if you guys wanted to seem them you would go see them. I have given the sources. you can look them up.

Now I know these are good studies. I know this is a fine field. so I am gonna takl about it because It's been proved.

you are all science deniers.

 Originally Posted by TeabagSalad View Post
What?! It is unfair to ask you to provide details on the evidence that you claim to have? I am not asking you to provide the whole study, I am asking you to provide the normal information that you'd give in a bibliography - you know; who wrote performed the study, when it was published and in which publication. The sort of thing that would enable someone to check out the source of information.

that is even more absurd and insulting. that proves you don't pay attentino to anything I say. You ask for stuff you wont listen to the answers. I provided a mountain of evidence on all of it. I've quoted endless. articles books bibs. I've shown you my bib.

where's your article? you wont look up on source. you want me to put the food in your mouth and move your teeth to chews.must I also digest it for you?


 I think Metacrock is pulling our collective leg. The paper he links to is just a literature survey that grabs any halfway relevant paper:

Since mystical experiences are designated by a number of different terms by investigators, our first computer run for the PSYCINFO search included the following key words for mystical experience: mystic$
It must be noted that they do refine the search, but at the end of the day this is an article about how to do a literature search.

Thus Metacrock's argument would be:

* There are 200 papers published that have been found by searching for the keyword "mystic$"
* Therefore the effects of mystical experience warrant belief.

This is one of the stupidest arguements they have ever come up with. First of all he's talking about the Lukoff literature search which I poted the day of all that bunck with Teabag above. Lukoff and Lu did a study of several studies, they read and summarize them. That I put up as an attempt to show them examples of the kind of study I'm talking about. It's highly revlivant because many of those studies in that lit search are the very studies I put on the list for the 200. They are all basically relivant.

The very stupid thing he says about "he just looking up anything with the name mystic by it" shows that he can't do research.  That's basically how you research. Of course you must read what is found, which he didn't do becuase he can't figure out that they are relevant. they all show good stuff about mystical experience.

Originally Posted by fleetmouse View Post
Thank you for the honesty. Very good. Not one single study explicitly supports your thesis.

Game over.

what he means by this is becuase these studies don't say "this study proves God exists," then the data from the can't be used in any sort of apologetic. I do use them as the back up for some God arguments so he's actually stupid enough to think that the studies have to say "God exists" as a finding or you can't use the data to argue for belief.

Of course use all sorts of studies that don't say "therefore the scientific conclusion is there is no God" as means of disproving belief. No study on the multiverse says "therefore there is no God" but the use it to argue against fine tuning.

if the study shows that people who have religious experience are better off than any people ever were but it doesn't say "so these guys are better off than anyone ever was" the I can't use teh data becuase the guy doesn't say it?

Delorean study shows air bags would save 25,000 lives a year from car crashes, but because he doesn't say "so we should force them to pub air bags in all cars" then I can' tuse that finding to argue that they should?

that is the argument of an imbecile.

you can't use the findings if the researcher doesn't use your exact words even though the findings clearly prove you are right. that's stupid.

that's an a par Major Major from cath 22 or with the Preisdent in Dr.Strangelove.

"Now Demitri one of our generals went a little bit funny in the head."

MY pages that talk about the studies:

God argument no 7: from co-determinate

No 8, argument from epistemic judgement (aka "the Thomas Reid argument")

Essays and arguments on reigious experience arguments, 

defense of the M scale, biboliogrophy, ect. on Religious a priori

Monday, March 24, 2014

Prayer Studies and Atheist Echo Chamber


Fran├žois-Bernard Michel,
Lourdes Medical committee and National Academy Medicine

The atheist propaganda machine is cranking away. I try to look for "studies that prove prayer works" I get a bunch of blogs about how prayer is stupid and doesn't work. There's a good article in Christianity Today talking about the limitations of double blind prayer studies. Then at least one blog registering disgust with the article. the basic argument in the article is we can't control for God's actions so we can't study it. They even quote C.S. Lewis saying this.

C.S. Lewis anticipated a carefully designed prayer study, but did not think it would show any positive, measurable "results." "The trouble is that I do not see how any real prayer could go on under such conditions," Lewis said. "Simply to say prayers is not to pray; otherwise a team of properly trained parrots would serve as well as men for our experiment." He argued that this approach to prayer treats it "as if it were magic, or a machine—something that functions automatically"—an accusation unintentionally but prophetically aimed at STEP and the other well-meaning attempts to measure the effects of prayer. If Lewis is right, such attempts always end up trying to measure something more akin to magic than a real movement of God.

The atheist attitude: hey don't confuse me with the facts of all that methodology stuff. Prayer didn't work all we need to know, can the details.

Here's a humanist piece that actually admits you can't control for outside prayer (the CT article says 91% of the anti-prayer study they considered said they had outside prayer.

Hector Avaelos (my old nemesis
form Loftus's blog)
Council for Secular Humanism

The problem with this and any so-called controlled experiment regarding prayer is that there can be no such thing as a controlled experiment concerning prayer. You can never divide people into groups that received prayer and those that did not. The main reason is that there is no way to know that someone did not receive prayer. How would anyone know that some distant relative was not praying for a member of the group that Byrd had identified as having received no prayer? How does one control for prayers said on behalf of all the sick people in the world? How does one assess the degree of faith in patients that are too sick to be interviewed or in the persons performing the prayers? Even Byrd acknowledges these problems and admits that "'pure' groups were not attained in this study." Since control groups are not possible, such purported scientific experiments are not possible.*
Of course this is ignored by atheists on message boards so they can argue that the study actually disproves prayer.

The Dawkies express hatred for religious thinkers and source connected to theological institution. can't believe the Lourdes stuff because they must be liars since they have religious people on the committee.

For example I quote on my miracle page on Doxa this quotation by a respected secular reporter who writes about the good rules the Lourdes miracle committee uses:



The paradox of human miracle assessment is that the only way to discern whether a phenomenon is supernatural is by having trained rationalists testify that it outstrips their training. Since most wonders admitted by the modern church are medical cures, it consults with doctors. Di Ruberto has access to a pool of 60 - "We've got all the medical branches covered," says his colleague, Dr. Ennio Ensoli - and assigns each purported miracle to two specialists on the vanquished ailment.

They apply criteria established in the 1700s by Pope Benedict XIV: among them, that the disease was serious; that there was objective proof of its existence; that other treatments failed; and that the cure was rapid and lasting. Any one can be a stumbling block. Pain, explains Ensoli, means little: "Someone might say he feels bad, but how do you measure that?" Leukemia remissions are not considered until they have lasted a decade. A cure attributable to human effort, however prayed for, is insufficient. "Sometimes we have cases that you could call exceptional, but that's not enough." says Ensoli. "Exceptional doesn't mean inexplicable."

"Inexplicable," or inspiegabile, is the happy label that Di Ruberto, the doctors and several other clerics in the Vatican's "medical conference" give to a case if it survives their scrutiny. It then passes to a panel of theologians, who must determine whether the inexplicable resulted from prayer. If so, the miracle is usually approved by a caucus of Cardinals and the Pope.

Some find the process all too rigorous. Says Father Paolino Rossi, whose job, in effect, is lobbying for would-be saints from his own Capuchin order: "It's pretty disappointing when you work for years and years and then see the miracle get rejected." But others suggest it could be stricter still.

There is another major miracle-validating body in the Catholic world: the International Medical Committee for the shrine at Lourdes. Since miracles at Lourdes are all ascribed to the intercession of the Virgin Mary, it is not caught up in the saint-making process, which some believe the Pope has running overtime. Roger Pilon, the head of Lourdes' committee, notes that he and his colleagues have not approved a miracle since 1989, while the Vatican recommended 12 in 1994 alone. "Are we too severe?" he wonders out loud. "Are they really using the same criteria?"

Atheist Troll "Backup" transforms the secular journalist Van Beema who is well respected into a "religious person" becasue he needs him to be one since he documents the good rules of the Lourdes Medical committee. Of cousre the implication being as a "religious nut" he's lying. They don't really have those rules because he's religious so he must lie.

This highlights how these Dawkies never listen to any source but their own. I have made a practice in my reserach of mostly using non Christian sources so they can't charge bias. Yet they have called Thomas Kuhn (one of the most highly respected secular thinkers) a "creationist." He was probalby an atheist or at least agnostic. He was most certainly a Darwinian.

On a few topics I use religious people because they did the work. This is met with the Bromide "he's a religious person he must be lying." If I said this about the atheist nut job Harris or Dawkins of course Dawkies would have a fit.

they actually can't see that Harris is the Craig of atheism and Dawkins is the Pat Robertson of atheism.

None of them can critically evaluate the nature of evidence. they just dogmatically assume any religious source has to be lying. They would resent that kid of analysis of their own most biased sources.

These guys are ghettoized. they just listen to their own guys and no one else.

On today's edition of Metacrock's Blog I post my essay "Analysis of Correlation and Causality in Miracle Hunting" which makes the point that claims of miracle are as much an epistemological problem as they are a scientific question, or even more so.

Hooks says:

"It's suspicious to say there's a professor on the medical committee. This must be a lie because no professor would ever support belief in healing," (of course they could still be on the committee--they actually use skeptics on the committee). Of the atheists are assuming the job of the committee is to "make up" or rubber stamp "miracles." If they they actual studied their work they would see this is foolish. There are 7000 "remarkably cases" that were rejected and only 67 miracles that made it to that status. If it's really a rubber stamp why don't they have 7067 miracles?

Here's a quote that proves they use professors:

"Professor Fran├žois-Bernard Michel, co-chairman of the International Medical Committee of Lourdes and a member of the French Academy of Medicine, said in a March 2006 statement “there is no sick person coming to Lourdes who has never received treatment, and that is how it should be. This pushing forward of medicine has achieved such a degree of sophistication that it is more difficult than ever to appreciate in a cure what is applicable to treatment and what is attributable to an inexplicable medical phenomenon.”

Read more:

O but it's from a catholic source it must be a lie. cant' reserach it or find out becuase it has to be a lie because it's in a Catholic site. all religious people lie. atheist never do.

here is a site of the french academy of medicine. we see Dr. Michel is on the board got his picture there.

could the catholic site just lie and say he's on the Lourdes committee when he's not? do you think the don't have libel laws in France?

*I removed fn 8 from this quote because it was no longer available on the net.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

The Ploy "there's no proof for your God..."

Atheist's mantra "there's no proof for your God" is based upon a double catch 22.

(1) Define out of existence any kind of evidence not in their favor by reducing all valid truth claims to empirical scientific data.

Science is the only from of knowledge, any thing else claiming to be knowledge is counterfeit. So reason, logic, experience, nothing else is evidence but empirical data. (bracket the problem that personal experience is closer to empirical data in the real sense than is scientific data).

(2) Impose a form of "Knowledge" not capable of apprehending God.

then they make a big deal out of "there's no proof for God."

that's like doing a poll that excludes Democrats then saying "our poll shows no one is voting democrat." Cause you excluded them.

This is how you prevent yourself from recognizing any evidence for God. You refuse to accept anything as evidence except that which is not capable of finding God because it's limited to the naturalistic domain.

Science is not capable of recognizing anything form beyond the material. So it can't accept that god is working in the natural it has to abhor that assumption because it's form outside the domain.

you create this false construct the "fortress of facts" that's constructed to screen out anything that would support belief in God. Then you claim "there's no evidence." That' because you screen it out.

We see this in the hermeneutics of miracle denial where the rejection of the evidence is based upon the assumptino of past denial.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

When atheists are science deniers

  photo brainwashhal.jpg

This is on carm today 

The "200" refer to the 200 studies I talk about on religious experience.

Originally Posted by Deist View Post
As I see it, the case is closed on the "200". There are no 200 and the ones ferreted out after molar extractions don't say what you allege they say. This has been gone over in numerous threads and posts time and time again. You have nothing with the alleged "200".
you can't answer them, they disprove your little comfy world where you get to be king, so you just pretend they don't exist. you haven't read them, you don't know anything about them, you know nothing about social scinece research but you are so sure of everything you decal ire they are not there.

they are there. you can't stop them,. they are scinece you are disobeying science.

you are a science denier!

 Deist is one of the most fun hooligans on CARM. He's one of the most narrow minded and he's right wing. He are some of his previous exploits, also dealing with the studies on religious experience:

Originally Posted by Deist View Post
As is usual with your posts, it is far too long to respond to everything.
no you don't read so you wont be proved wrong. why should I waste my time talking to someone who wont play fair?

why should message board posting be speed chess? It should be discussion. who cares if it goes slow?

Hood is a well-known Christian, 
(Dr.Ralph Hood, Ph.D.,professor of psychology at University of Tennessee Chattanooga).

No he's not, Einstein! he's not a Christian at all. He didn't even grow up in a Christian background.

you are mixed up you just made that up. you have no information on that you even claim he's "well known" so you are spreading mendacity.

Hood is a friend of mine. He's not a Christian. It's just a convenient way for him to dismiss Hood. Hood is the inventor of the M scale that makes the study of religious experience scientific. If it supposedly proved it was bogus and silly he would be all for it. Instead it helps to show that RE is good for you so he has to deny its validity. Typical of atheists their view are not based upon the facts but their facts are gathered in relation to their need to support their views.

I don't know the people that he interviewed, as the people are anonymous, and I think the man is lying. 
takes one to know one I guess. you put yourself in that position didn't you? Making up BS about this guy that you have no knowledge about. He was a hippie. The closest he got to Christian was Unitarian, that was just growing up. he's not well known as a Christian he' snot well known at all outside of psychology of religion.

you don't know anything about him you are making it up.

How is anyone to check whether or not the respondents were atheist if they are anonymous?

you didn't even read it. who did I say was atheist? how did I say he knows about atheist? go back and read what you did not read. I did not say it was the anonymous respondents. what did I say?

We're supposed to just believe that? The Christians here go on and on about someone who commits a serious crime as not being a Christian. Therefore, I am only using the Christian way of doing things by contending that even though someone may have said they were in atheist, doesn't mean they actually were. I would like to interview that person who claimed he was an atheist when he had this alleged experience, to determine just when he was an atheist, and what his family background is. I am quite sure that we would find that his family was Catholic or Christian, that the people he hung around with were Christian. 

you could believe the studies that's why they are documented. that's why we give sources and that's why they peer review.

Now class what Have I said about atheist arguments? They are usually based upon either begging the question or incredulity. This is an appeal to incredulity. The evidence proves him wrong, he can't refute it, so he just refuses to believe it's real. These guys are not atheists.

What's good for the goose is good for the gander. I submit that anyone who says they were an atheist when they had this alleged mystical experience was never a true atheist.

It's NOT all gravy you know. at least I'm using real studies and not slandering people.

btw thanks for the amo for atheist watch.

 How can one argue rationally with someone who just refuses to accept counter evidence?

Monday, March 17, 2014

Richard Carrier: Acts as Historical Fiction, or Atheist Fictional History?

 photo journeys_zpsa088cfc1.gif

An Article by James McGrath about an article by John Loftus (his blog 3/14/14), about a lecture by Carrier. I can't get the original lecture. Of course Carrier spits on the traditional view that Luke was a good historian. He doesn't stop there, he denies that Luke was even trying to be an kind of historian. According to McGrath, Luke was pretending to do historical research in his preface. Moreover, Carrier charges that Luke's method was sub standard.[1] According to McGrath's report of Carrier he argues that Luke's statement about using sources means he was claiming to slavishly follow them but then he did not.

Carrier assumes that Luke is a novel. He thinks there was a genre of ancinet novel and that these novels always included travel, miracles and divine revelation. Paul and Lydia are an ancient literary type the chaste couple reunited. This shows the Ignace of modern historians as novels didn't exist utnil early modern times:
Unlike poetry and drama, which go back thousands of years to works such as the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh (c. 2000 B.C.) and the Greek play Oresteia (458 B.C.), the novel is a somewhat recent literary creation.  Lengthy fictional narratives written in prose had appeared sporadically before 1700; examples include the stories in Italian writer Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron (1351-1353), the English romancer Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur (c. 1469), and Don Quixote (1605, 1615), by Miguel de Cervantes of Spain.  These early precursors aside, some scholars date the birth of the modern novel to the eighteenth century, specifically the publication of the English printer Samuel Richardson’s Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded (1740-1742), a long story recounting the trials of an English girl in a battle against a man trying to seduce her.[2]
For that matter there were no real historians in that day, not the sense that we know them. There was no academic world, no Ph.D. given in history. Historians were not thought of as social scientists. They didn't have the standards of documentation or scholarly caution that we have today. On that basis one could say there were no historians, if that's all we can all historian, modern academics. Even Tacitus was not a historian. There's no basis for the idea that Luke was not writing about true events to which he was witness. There's no reason to think he did not have a standard of using best evidence and no reason to think that he didn't critically make us of what he thought was authoritative and let go that which he thought was not.

According to McGrath Carrier charges Luke with "lying" that's how he explains the differences between Luke's account and Paul's accounts of the same episodes in Galatians. McGrath makes the point that Carrier calls this "revisionist history" but then how could it be that if it's a novel?[3]
His suggestion that Luke mistook “Gerazim” for “Galileans” seems unlikely. But he does present an interesting summary of the possible evidence for Luke drawing on Josephus, which some mainstream scholars have proposed. But once again, Carrier says that in reproducing Josephus, Luke is thus “not writing history,” which is rather bizarre. Drawing on a historian does not by any stretch of the imagination prove that someone is not trying to write history!!![4]
There are several other silly clams McGrath reports that I wont go into, For example Figures in Acts are designed to be parallel to Jesus, that's important for the Jesus myther aspect of Carrier's thought. I will focus on two issues, the over historicity of Acts and the issue that Luke copied Josephus. For a general defense of Luke as a historian in his Gospel see my Doxa page on Luke.

Luke as historian

One of the major aspects Luke's good historicity is his getting right the names of officils and the accurate title of their offices. Stephen Neil makes the point that Luke get's all of the titles correct in Acts, all the minor officials in every little localities, even titles which were thought previously to have been wrong archaeology has proven Luke right.[5] He also is right about the individuals who inhabited offices during the time of the book of Acts. Just to give a few examples. The pool of Bethseda in Luke where the angle "troubled the waters" for healing, and Jesus healed the lame man and told him to take up his bed and walk, has been discovered beneath the Church of ST. Anne. There is a pool at the bottom of a flight of stairs and an ancient fresco with a picture of an angel troubling the waters.[6]  In Romans 16:23 Paul sends greetings from Erastus the city treasurer. IN Corinth an inscription has been found which mentions Erastus [7] Harnack and others attest to Lukes accuracy in terms of the ship wreck on Malta, the flavor and historicity of the cities he speaks of the, the time period and all other verifiable elements of this nature. Neil thought that one of the most impressive aspects of Luke as an historian is that he always gets the titles write. Many of the titles of local officials which Luke provides us with were not validated until modern times.
"The writter of Acts knew the correct titles and used them with varying percision. In the words of Ramsey: 'the officials with whom Paul and his companions were brought into contact are those who would be there. Every person is found just where he ought to be; procounsuls in senatorial provences, asiarchs in Ephesus, strategoi in Philippi, politarchs in Thessolonica, magicians and soothsayers everywhere.' The Most remarkable of these titles is Politarch the ruler of the city used in Acts 17:6...previously this word had been completely unknown except for this passage in Acts. It has now been found in 19 inscriptions dating from he second century..." [8]
Neil argues that titles are the hardest things to get right, modern French writers never get English titles right, and this is something that would easily and surely betray an anachronism [9]. Historians of the modern day judge Luke a superb historian.It is true that Luke could have made up the events of Jesus' ministry and just used factual information to write the narrative. But it is absurd to think that Luke would traps all over Palestine to learn the little obscure titles of minor officials, because he is right about the exact people in authority at the time and the exact titles they held. This is clearly the work of an eye witness not merely a fictional writer. This is not some minor formality to get the things right, it's an indication he was really there on the trip. Now he could have just been on the trip at some other time and used the knowledge for his fictional writing, but anyone who argues that is struggling to preserve the argument against all likelihood. He says he was there, the fact that he was tallies with some of the things Paul says in Galatians so why not assume he was there?

 "Sir William Ramsay who devoted many fruitful years to the Archaeology of Asia Minor testifies to Lukes intimate and accurate acquaintance and the Greek East at the time with which his writings deal."[10] Ramsay began as a Tubingen liberal, believing Luke to be a second century production with no validity. By the end of his life he was so persuaded of the truth and validity of Luke that he gave up scholarship and became an Evangelist and apologist using arguments based upon the discoveries he had made.[11] It cannot be claimed that he was not an "objective" scholar, as he is one of the greats of the field. Dr. Henry J.Cadbury delivered the Lowell lectures in 1953 and produced a work on the Book of Acts in which he hailed Luke as a first rate historian.[12]

Did Luke Copy Josephus?

the Carrier article on Luke and Josephus can be found here.

Strange theory because it has Chrsitians making up the things Jo said about Jesus, but then it also has Luke copying them to use for Acts. That's possible but kind of cumbersome. There are not very many scholar who credit that kind of senerio. One of the most important sources the reader should consult is the Flavious Josephus homepage by J.G. Goldberg.[13] Goldberg has asked that people not quote him. I will summarize a few things but I recommend highly that the reader to go his pages and read them. There he sets all the passage side by side, Luke and Jo and makes helpful comments about them. Golberg does say that Luke is concerned with embedding Jesus in a historical context, that would put him at odds with Carrier who thinks he was writing fiction. Oddly enough he thinks that Luke quoting a historian in order to write fiction. Add to this that Luke apparently did travel to all the places he writs about for the missionary journeys. So he copied a historian so he would write a fictitious account of a journey he actually made himself?

Victor Repport has a gine article which summarizes arguments of Tim McGrew on Carrier's arguments about Luke and Josephus.[14] McGrew jokes that the parallels are so general he wonders why he left out that both mention Rome.
The list of “story parallels” is even worse, since in many cases it involves torturing the notion of a parallel. Just run through the list and note some of the (non)parallels that he either vastly overrates or twists ’round:

* In Josephus, the census under Quirinius is the beginning of something bad. In Luke, it isn’t. Therefore, this is a parallel where Luke “transvalues” the message of the census, changing “bad” into “good.”

(Um, ... standards ...?)

* Josephus says that there were many men who led revolts, and he names three prominent ones. Luke has passing references to three persons with the same names, though it is not clear that Luke’s “Theudas” is the same as Josephus’s. One of the men is called “the Egyptian” by both Josephus and Luke; Luke links him with the sicarii, whereas Josephus does not. Therefore, Luke was copying from Josephus.

(The argument that this must be copying because there were thousands of Egyptians in Palestine at the time is beyond ridiculous. It would work equally well against two independent references to Jimmy the Greek. (“How many millions of Greeks,” etc.))

* Luke and Josephus both recount the death of Agrippa I in some detail, speaking of his brilliant robe, his acceptance of adulation as a God, and his immediate demise. There are also some details that differ in the two stories. Therefore, Luke must have borrowed it from Josephus.

(It couldn’t just be a notorious fact? Why not?)

* Josephus mentions a rumor that there was an incestuous relationship between Agrippa II and Bernice; Luke does not. Therefore, Luke is inspired by Josephus and intends the entire scene in Acts 25 as comic sarcasm.

(Does it seem like sarcasm? Can it by any legitimate stretch of the imagination be read that way?)

* Josephus reports that Drusilla abandoned her husband for Felix. Luke (Acts 24) portrays Paul as speaking to Felix about righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix becomes uncomfortable. Therefore, Luke must be using Josephus.[15

This is just the kind of thing I would expect form the mythers. Some of their parallels (Carrier's) are hilarious. Here's a priceless one Reppert mentions:

* "Josephus portrays Felix as sending priests, “excellent men,” to Rome for trial on petty charges. Luke portrays Paul as demanding to be sent to Rome. So perhaps Luke was using Josephus as a model."

Reppert adds:


Hey, it makes perfect sense to me, but then I've been posting on CARM since 1998.


all online sources accessed 3/16/14.

[1] Jame McGrath, "Richard Carrier on Acts as Historical Fiction." Exploring our Matrix, blog on Pathos: Progressive Christian Channel. March 13, (2014)
[2] Mark Canada, "Introduction to the novel." Eng.343: The American Novel. educational resource on line
this is a class syllabus-type material Mark Canada is professor at University of North Carolina at Pembroke.
[3] McGrath, Op cit.
[4] Ibid.
[5] Stephen Neil, The Interpriation of the New Testament:1861-1961, London: Oxford Univesity press, 1964, 143.
[6] F.F. Bruce, The New Testament Documents Are they Reliable? Jefferson, Grand Rapids, Cambridge England: Published Jointly in USA W.B Eerdmans Publishing Company, by 1943, 1981 94
[7] Ibid. 95
[8] Stephen Neil,Op. Cit, 143.
[8]  Ibid.,147
[10] Ibid., 90
[11] Ibid.
[12] Ibid.
[13] J.G. Goldberg, "New Testament Parallels to the Works of Josephus," The Falvious Josephus Home page
[14] Victory Repport, "Tim McGrew on Carrier's Treatment of Luke and Jospheus," Dangerous Idea
McGrew is professor of Philosophy at Western Michigan University.
[15] Ibid.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

atheist ideology at work

another example of atheist circular reasoning.

Originally Posted by backup View Post
The arguments against it being prophesy is that there is no evidence of prophesy. You have to ignore the observed laws of the universe to make your theory work. That doesn't make for a very good theory. Besides, the text clearly states the suffering servant is Israel and the association with Jesus is weak at best.

 Notice he just up and declairs laws of the universse as though he's in charge. Where are these laws written? Is there a huge block of granite out in space that says "thou shoult make no prophesies" singed legislature of nature.

The legislature of nature says there can't be propheis. O sorry, there is no legislature of nature. Prophesy is a matter of belief not fact there's no law agaisnt it. There is a law agaisnt cirular reasoning and he had violated it.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Atheists, best friends of Chrsitian Apologetics

 photo this_is_file_name_2899_zps04227686.jpg

 It's quite easy to find atheists making franc admissions they don't know their stuff, or that their views can't be disproved, or that they refuse to accept the evidence. The problem with saying it can't be disproved is that if it's an empirical matter that means it can't be proved either. Here's a quote from a recent harangue about the religious experience studies:

from CARM 3/11/14


...the universality of the experience is proof of the objective existence of what is experienced.
that's where you don't know enough about the issues. Hood is a reputable scientist. He's the top researcher in the world on mystical experience and he is widely recognized as the Chomsky of that field. It's his argument! 

 madmax (carm 3/11/14)

I won't be dragged into your mystical experiences studies. It's been hashed over many times in this forum and I've no motivation whatsoever to rehash it. It takes far more than "reputation" for me to find such things compelling. 

 This very day Deist  demonstrates that when you back him into a corner and prove him wrong he will simply refuse to accept the evidence. The issue here is religoius experience studies. He's still convened after years of proving it wrong, that you can just lie on a study and they have no way of dealing with it; it has to bias the data even if it's just one person. All of that is Just BS. modern scientific polling methods assume 3% lie anyway, so they have 3% margin of error.

The issue of atheist with mystical experience comes into it. Rather than say that atheists having mystical expeince proves it's not God, Deist is  so stupid he tries to deny that they are true atheists who are having it.

 Metacrock;5392119]that is BS! how many do I have to answer this? when the hell are you going to start read what I say? I've told you this over and over again. Hood specially goes out of his way to find atheist to study, illiterate one. It is not a problem for this view point if atheists have this experience, Einstein.

how else in hell do you think he's able to say 'when atheists have this experience they act like the people who bleieve it's God. They still treat it as though it's God." I've mentioned this numerous times. are you ever gonna get it?

you are probably not even reading this.


This is quite hilarious. Anonymous survey takers, yet we're supposed to believe the man who extolls the virtues of snake handling that he sought out atheists? Are you SERIOUS with this garbage?
this just highlights your ignorance. you want to pretend like the only study Hood did was on study and he only read his study and nothing else. There is a huge several tons of research on this topic form the 20th century as a whole, but especially the last 50 years. Its' snot all form anonymous survey takers. There are many examples of atheist having it, in many books, atheists themselves write about it, there are studies that aren't done with anonymous respondents. There are qualitative in-depth studies where they know the position of the subject.

you dont' know beans about research.
(1) makes no difference whatsoever. as I have already proved. you can't lie your way to validating Stace. even if the people he studied wanted to they could not organize in such a way as to reflect5 the answer that would support Stace's theory. it's too bleeding complex.

People lie, fib and fabricate and imagine all manner of things. This is why I don't believe Hood, Stacey or ANONYMOUS survey respondents. I guess my gullibility quotient is not as high as yours.
I just got through saying you can't lie your way to validating Stace. Some people may have lied on Hood's study (usually about 3% no more that lie on a study) but if it was a majority the study could never validate Stace. it did valuate Stace so they didn't' lie.

if they had a massive organized campaign to lie they could not validate.

(2) remember how I did it here? I challenged he atheist on carm to lie their way to validating my own study. none of you did. you remember? none of you were able to lie in the way that validated it.

I never took the survey 
you sure did. so what if you didn't. others did. they couldn't lie their way to it. I can believe you would refrain form doing is you can deny you lost. you are probalby a welcher on bets too.
 (3) That would not matter but the fact of it is they do study atheists. There are atheist who have mystical eDxperience,they react it the way God believers do. Not only does Hood find that by Maslow found

Riggghhht. Give me their info and I'll guarantee you they were no troo atheist. ahahahahaahahahahahahaahah
you have no idea what you are saying! you just basically said "nothing can ever count agaisnt my position.If they seem to disprove it then I'll just say they are not true atheists." nothing can ever count, when it seems to disprove it, just bail out. it's not real.

stick your head in the sand. you can't be disproved by the fact, those old facts go away when you stop your ears and go "aalallalalalalalalal" real loud.



Because the concept of God is cultural! use your brain, get your head screwed in. if there is no God there to experience they have to have culture to give them the concept. If that's the case they wont a have a universal set of experiences that are the same. only if there is a reality there they all actually experience that they have the same experiences.

sorry, Charlie, you lose on this one. With the vague responses of oneness, peace, tranquility..........those vagaries can mean anything and certainly would be expected from ANYONE professing a belief in ANY God.
Of cousre this just show abysmally stupid he is. He can't contorl his hatred so he can't look at the scale and see it's not veg is very specific just becuase it deals with some sense of pace and tranquility that is no reaosn to assume its vague. It's a very specific sort of tranquility. He would miss that question becuase his dumb assumption so his attempt to lie his way to validating would fail.

Notice he bails out of the evidence when you corn him in saying "they are not real atheists." I refuse to refuse to accept the evidence no matter how good it is. If atheists are proved wrong I just define them as not atheists.

classic! don't confuse me with the facts. I know that old telescope is a trick there can't be mountains on the moon

this just in from CARM:

Originally Posted by backup View Post
Obviously the fact that this would mean the text predicted the future is a good reason to dismiss it being about Jesus.

It was written before Jesus was born.

This claim that the suffering servant is a prophecy of Jesus is an incredible stretch and exposes the vast difference between theology and other academic disciplines.
In other words this can't be true because it was I would be wrong.