Instigator
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Points: 14

Lightning Debate Alpha Test. (Topic will be No Gods exist)

Finished

The voting period has ended

After 2 votes the winner is ...
Wrick-It-Ralph
Debate details
Publication date
Last update
Category
Religion
Time for argument
Three days
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
One week
Point system
Four points
Characters per argument
5,000
Contender
Dustandashes avatar
Points: 11
Description
Alright 5000 words and format will be as quick as possible. My goal is to produce nice mini debates that are easy to vote on.
Round 1A: Opening
Round 1B: Rebuttal of R1A
Round 2A: Rebuttal of R1B
Round 2B: Interrogation (5 Questions only for sake of testing until I know better)
Round 3A: Answering R2B Questions and then interrogation.
Round 3B: Answering R3A Closing.
Round 1
Published:
Since this is a test format, I will leave instructions at the end of each round to make things easy for my opponent and the voters to follow.  Feel free to comment on how you felt about the format. 



Premise 1 == God is extremely unlikely to begin with. 

In order to accept the God Proposition, one must take many things on faith. We must assume The bible is true at least to some degree.  Some more then others.  We must also accept that magic exist.  We must accept that heaven exist.  We must accept that God is all powerful to the point being able to defy human logic.  At some point, this becomes a steep bet. 



Premise 2 == God is not coherent with our model of the universe. 

By coherent I mean that the properties of God do not match what we would expect to see in physics.  This further pushes The God Proposition into obscurity and makes it difficult to even imagine what God could even consist of or how we could know anything about God at all. 

God is suppose to be the necessary pieces of creation, but we have no good model for this in physics.  The best thing we have is the fine tuning argument which is probably the best attempt to date, but still does not get us close enough to posit a God with any type of justification for doing so. 

Premise 3 == God has too many definitions. 

God is Love, God is Wrath, God is sin, God is all, God is nothing, God is something, God is mysterious, God is direct, God is candid, etc etc. 

There's simply too many properties to god for it to be a real thing.  God seems about as likely as a square circle that is White Black. 



Premise 4 == Pascal's Wager Favors Atheism. 

Mostly just a side note for flavor, but fun fact, this is true.  When the wager is actually done in semantic terms, then Atheism ends up giving you the best odds.  This doesn't quite prove or disprove anything.  But for those gamblers out there that like to go with the best odds, this is it.  

There's simply too many god claims and only one can be right.  Choosing which heaven to go for and which hell to avoid and which profit to believe all ends up selling short. 

Logically speaking, Any God that even has a heaven for you is probably going to let you in even if you don't believe in it because God would probably be that nice of a guy.  So I think Atheism is a fine bet. 


Premise 5 == God wouldn't make lightning debates. 

He just wouldn't.  Any true god would make these logically impossible because he simply doesn't like them for some reason ;) 



Okay, so from here My opponent will be giving a rebuttal of my premises and then we'll move on from there. 

Your floor. 
Published:
Greetings debate-art community. And greetings to my opponent in chapter two to our debate on God's existence. In the spirit of this debate, I will try to be as concise as possible in my rebuttal. I will also try to state a short case in the positive for God's existence as well. 


My opponent

Premise 1 == God is extremely unlikely to begin with. 

In order to accept the God Proposition, one must take many things on faith. We must assume The bible is true at least to some degree.  Some more then others.  We must also accept that magic exist.  We must accept that heaven exist.  We must accept that God is all powerful to the point being able to defy human logic.  At some point, this becomes a steep bet.

Negation 

In order to accept any proposition when dealing with questions of origins and cosmology in particular, a vast majority of conclusions must be taken on faith. In fact, the entire scientific method rests upon the concept of uniformity of nature, which is a faith based phenomenon. I have no concrete evidence the sun will come up tomorrow or water will boil at the same temperature as yesterday aside from that fact that these things happened in the past, which is circular reasoning, but its what scientists take on faith daily. Also, my opponent has used the word magic, however, God's miracles are not magic, it is His ability to control the laws of nature and manipulate the time space matter continuum. 

My opponent

Premise 2 == God is not coherent with our model of the universe. 

By coherent I mean that the properties of God do not match what we would expect to see in physics.  This further pushes The God Proposition into obscurity and makes it difficult to even imagine what God could even consist of or how we could know anything about God at all. 

God is suppose to be the necessary pieces of creation, but we have no good model for this in physics.  The best thing we have is the fine tuning argument which is probably the best attempt to date, but still does not get us close enough to posit a God with any type of justification for doing so. 
Negation

Our model of the universe unequivocally supports theism. It is scientifically sound to state the universe had a beginning. The big bang supports the existence of God strongly, things that have beginnings have causes. 


My opponent

Premise 3 == God has too many definitions. 

God is Love, God is Wrath, God is sin, God is all, God is nothing, God is something, God is mysterious, God is direct, God is candid, etc etc. 

There's simply too many properties to god for it to be a real thing.  God seems about as likely as a square circle that is White Black. 

Only if you use the definitions of "god" from just about every world religion at once. That's an unreasonable thing to do. When talking about God, since my opponent is an atheist, I will be using a more scientific definition. The Intelligent Mind that originated the sum totality of time space and a matter. As a Christian Theist that definition works perfectly for me as well. 

My opponent stated

"Logically speaking, Any God that even has a heaven for you is probably going to let you in even if you don't believe in it because God would probably be that nice of a guy.  So I think Atheism is a fine bet. "

I believe the whole point behind Pascal's wager was that hell was a very real threat, so this view of Pascal's wager favoring atheism only works if you undermine the entire point of the wager in the first place. 

Finally, my opponent:

Premise 5 == God wouldn't make lightning debates. 

He just wouldn't.  Any true god would make these logically impossible because he simply doesn't like them for some reason ;) 
Actually, I think it is more scientifically sound to state that God has an issue with Elephantidae. Considering the wooly mammoths went extinct, mastodons went extinct, and African and Asian elephant populations are for the most part endangered, my opponent has made a real good choice of avatar.


I am running out of characters, but here's a short case for the God of the Bible in particular:

1. Without presupposing that we were designed by a benevolent and truthful Creator, we could have no certain knowledge on literally anything. For all we know, in an atheistic universe, our senses and reasoning do not actually give us the truth about anything, and the world around us is vastly different than our senses tell us. The physical world we perceive may not be anything more than the delusions brought about by haphazardly organized cells and sensory organs that do not reflect what's true in reality. If our senses were not created with the purpose of yielding us the truth, so I will ask my opponent, on what basis do you trust your sense perceptions enough that you believe we are having this debate?

Thank you all!

ICXCNIKA


Round 2
Published:
Thank you to my opponent as always. 

I will now do a rejoinder of my opponent's rebuttal and then I will provide instructions at the bottom of the next round as per the format. 
Negation 

In order to accept any proposition when dealing with questions of origins and cosmology in particular, a vast majority of conclusions must be taken on faith. In fact, the entire scientific method rests upon the concept of uniformity of nature, which is a faith based phenomenon. I have no concrete evidence the sun will come up tomorrow or water will boil at the same temperature as yesterday aside from that fact that these things happened in the past, which is circular reasoning, but its what scientists take on faith daily. Also, my opponent has used the word magic, however, God's miracles are not magic, it is His ability to control the laws of nature and manipulate the time space matter continuum. 
Well technically, assuming something because it happened in the past isn't circular reasoning.  Also, I would like to note that not all circular reasoning is fallacious.  Only if it's a vicious circle with no justification under at least one of the premises. It's actually what's called a Strong inductive argument which is not absolute knowledge like a tautology, but rather a probabilistic argument that has high probability of being true.  In this case, The sun coming up and gravity have perfect track records, so they're painfully likely.

Science doesn't take things on faith.  They do presuppose, but only to the bare minimum.  Theism presupposes to the bare maximum.

 Negation

Our model of the universe unequivocally supports theism. It is scientifically sound to state the universe had a beginning. The big bang supports the existence of God strongly, things that have beginnings have causes. 
Well my problem here is with the word "unequivocally".  While God is a sufficient cause.  God has not yet been proven necessary.  There are at least 3 competing models that have far more science behind them.  So The God argument needs to put in more leg work to prove itself. 

Only if you use the definitions of "god" from just about every world religion at once. That's an unreasonable thing to do. When talking about God, since my opponent is an atheist, I will be using a more scientific definition. The Intelligent Mind that originated the sum totality of time space and a matter. As a Christian Theist that definition works perfectly for me as well. 
Well most of those definitions that I stated came from the bible alone.  I'm okay with your definition for this debate.  I would say that even using a properly basic God that just fits science, you're still taking on way more presuppositions that most scientists would be uncomfortable justifying. 

I believe the whole point behind Pascal's wager was that hell was a very real threat, so this view of Pascal's wager favoring atheism only works if you undermine the entire point of the wager in the first place. 
Well that's why I said the modern version of pascal's wager.  The original version was used as a conversion tactic and didn't use formal logic or probability.  A statistician would model Pascal's wager in a much different way and I guarantee that Atheism would have better odds because there is a concept in betting that basically amounts to "Bird in the hand equals two in the bush"  

The years your guaranteed are worth more than the years you don't have.  So wasting those years makes it a bad bet because the bet is too steep and the stakes are too high and even if I accepted that hell could exist, there is no way to know the right hell so choosing a religion might put me in worse trouble if I pick wrong while and atheist could get into more heavens. 

1. Without presupposing that we were designed by a benevolent and truthful Creator, we could have no certain knowledge on literally anything. For all we know, in an atheistic universe, our senses and reasoning do not actually give us the truth about anything, and the world around us is vastly different than our senses tell us. The physical world we perceive may not be anything more than the delusions brought about by haphazardly organized cells and sensory organs that do not reflect what's true in reality. If our senses were not created with the purpose of yielding us the truth, so I will ask my opponent, on what basis do you trust your sense perceptions enough that you believe we are having this debate?
I based my epistemology on The principle of self evidence.  I don't use presuppositions because they're fallacious in my humble opinion. If self evidence is true, then my senses are sound.  That's my best answer to that. 



We will now move to interrogation where my opponent will pose me no more than 5 questions for test purposes because I want to make sure I have space to answer them. Then I answer and interrogate back. 
Published:
Some good rebuttals from my opponent, I will now ask several questions.


1. It is logically sound to conclude that everything that has a beginning has a cause, since the science bears out the fact that the universe is not eternal, why do you not agree we need a Cause? 

2. Are the laws of logic (non contradiction, identity, etc) human conventions? If so, are they subject to change? 

3. What, in your opinion, made Christianity a unique and successful movement? What differentiated it from the other Messiah movements like Bar Kochba or Sevi?

4. How do you know your senses are not deceiving you?

5. The universe bears evidence of fine tuning suitable for human life. What do you make of this?

I hope I did that right. 

Thanks Wrick it!
Round 3
Published:
Thank you now let's answer us some questions. 

1. It is logically sound to conclude that everything that has a beginning has a cause, since the science bears out the fact that the universe is not eternal, why do you not agree we need a Cause? 
well to say that something had a beginning is either to say that it was formed from something else or to say that it popped into existence.  In the first case, I would agree that there would be an "unformed form"  But I don't agree with the "uncaused cause"  Because there are no recorded cases of anything every popping into existence. So I do believe in a cause, but I believe the cause is both physical and eternal. 



2. Are the laws of logic (non contradiction, identity, etc) human conventions? If so, are they subject to change?
They are human inventions designed to describe reality, so they are congruent with reality.  as for the second part, it depends what you mean.  If you mean can we change the name or the rules.  Then the answer is yes.  But the event that it was describing would still happen, it just wouldn't have a name anymore and the changed law may or may not describe reality anymore and if it does it might just end up overlapping with some other theoretical principle. 



3. What, in your opinion, made Christianity a unique and successful movement? What differentiated it from the other Messiah movements like Bar Kochba or Sevi?
From what I know on the subject, there are two driving factors. 

A) Christianity was highly adaptive.  It was flexible and assimilated the traditions of it's followers.  I think part of this is that the focus of the religion was around accepting Jesus and took some of the pressure off people to worry about individual practices.  This allowed an environment for assimilation. 

B)  Christianity was a pacifist religion which was a newer concept at the time and they took it to the extreme which overwhelming success.  As you can tell pacifism has taken hold in modern society and Christianity happen to bet on the right horse because it seems to create superior societies to the old iron fist war societies. 




4. How do you know your senses are not deceiving you?
I don't, but what I do know is that they're consistent and congruent with reality.  So even if they're wrong, they still work consistently and I can navigate reality just fine with them so it's the difference between speaking English and Spanish. 






5. The universe bears evidence of fine tuning suitable for human life. What do you make of this?
I've always had a problem with the phrase "fine tuning" because it automatically implies that there are these imaginary dials that can change physics.  But the thing is that they're called cosmological constants, not variables. Constants, by definition, cannot be changed.  The universe functions the way it does because of the way it is structured now, there's nothing "fine" about it.  

My other problem is that they cite the probabilities as being unreasonable, but they're thinking about it from a human scale.  1% looks small to humans.  But on a cosmic scale with all of the time and space  in the world, a 1% chance is the same as being inevitable to happen at least once.  So while the chances look small to humans, the chances don't look small to the cosmos because they have all of the time and space in the world to roll the dice and wait for the win. 



Now for my Questions. 

1. How far away would something have to be before you would acknowledge that we shouldn't even try to know it? 

2.  If you were God, would you use The Bible (word for word) to spread your message. 

3.  If a law was put in place preventing the teaching of religion to minors, do you think that Christianity would survive?

4.  Why does the apocalypse keeping getting pushed back?

5.  Do you think it's fair for God to punish us for Original sin when we had no control over it?


I await your answers and closing

Good debate.  

Published:
Thank to my opponent as always. Some very good responses, now for my turn.

I am posting this from my phone so it's going to be a little concise:

In response to number one, I would say it depends on what exactly we were talking about. In regards to God, within the Christian worldview even though God is transcendent He is not distant. As the apostle Paul said he is not far from any one of us. So think it would also be a matter if trying to find whatever we're trying to find is a worth while pursuit. In this case I would argue God is the most worthwhile.


Number two, I would yes. A book is timeless, so if I was trying to send an eternally true message I would use a venue that has a lot of longevity.

Number three absolutely. Christianity is outright banned in many parts of the world, and yet we continue to flourish.

Number four, well unfortunately many people who call themselves Christians have fallen into the trap of setting dates for Christ to come back. The Bible never gives the time though so we really can't push anything back if there's nothing there


Number five, this one can get a bit in depth but I'll try to briefly say that God doesn't actively punish us for Adam's sin, it's that we are all the descendants of Adam so what happened to him was carried over to us. Like a domino effect. .



I hope these answers were helpful. Thanks everyone

Dustandashes avatar
Added:
--> @Wrick-It-Ralph
Congratulations on winning. I think it was a fair outcome.
Contender
#17
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Melcharaz
there is tons of material on pascal's wager if you're ever curious, but it's not really a logical argument. It's actually a technique that a specific person invented as a reason to convert to Christianity.
You could say it's logical to an extent, but ultimately making any decision off of it is merely a gamble. So you don't get knowledge out of it, but rather a chance of practicality if you happen to make the right choice.
So you're saying that the god topic is too short for R3 debates? I may be inclined to agree with that.
One thing I do want to avoid is circular rebuttals. I feel like they don't add anything to the argument. That's why I like the question round because it's my way of getting people to rebuttal me without just making the same assertion. So if I say thing X in R1 and you say thing Y in R2 and then I say thing X again in R3, then we've made a circle now (hopefully the R3 would be a counter, rather than a circle, but that's not usually the case). So at this point, the R4 can break the circle by forcing them to rebuttal in the form of a question. This forces both of them to put aside the assertions and answer tough questions honestly. I also think it chills the tension in the debate as well. Of course, people could still dodge and assert things with questions. But no system is perfect.
Instigator
#16
Melcharaz avatar
Added:
--> @Wrick-It-Ralph
Not the structure of rebuttals but the debate its self. The existence of Of God almost always in circular logic or disproof of science or recognition of logical fallcy/Ignorance debate.
I never heard of pascal's wager either. I have a hard time weighing arguements on God's existence based on Logic assumption and insertions of knowledge we know. without considering the facts we do not know. You have debated me before on this, i think you understand what i mean.
#15
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Melcharaz
Well if it's logically sound, then what's the problem? I do think links are good at times, but I think they can also saturate a debate. I think instead of just having links always ready at the beginning, we should just pop them in when they are called for. Some debate topics don't end up needing links because the opponents don't say anything that call for it.
Instigator
#14
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Melcharaz
Duly noted.
I believe you're right on the word limit. It's mostly to prevent filibustering. But I'll probably just go with the normal 10K limit I use which I have almost never seen anybody cap out on.
Is your second critique aimed at the structure of the rebuttals?
Instigator
#13
Melcharaz avatar
Added:
--> @Wrick-It-Ralph
That being said, i have hard time to vote on debates when its based mostly on assertion without links to back it up. Even if logically sound.
#12
Melcharaz avatar
Added:
--> @Wrick-It-Ralph
While indeed more concise and easier to vote on, i feel part of the depth involved in 5k+ arguments is lost. I'm not saying its bad to have small debates, but i believe that in knowing each other and seeing the depth of reasoning and research reveals the character of the pro and con. The soul of the debate is constrained.
Sometimes going through the ringer helps the pro to understand his subject better and likewise for the con to go deeper in reason and resource against/for it.
#11
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Dustandashes
Thanks for the R5 answer and the good debate as always.
Instigator
#10
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Dustandashes
I don't care if you do more than five questions, but just keep in mind that I need space to reply so if you over do it, I'll have to not quote your questions directly to make space.
Little tip. You can use some of your questions as rebuttals for my last rebuttal. It helps in case there's something I brought up you wanted to address.
Instigator
#9
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Dustandashes
I had 3 characters left, lol.
Instigator
#8
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Dustandashes
Can't wait to see it
Instigator
#7
Dustandashes avatar
Added:
Cool I'll mix mine up too
Contender
#6
Dustandashes avatar
Added:
Sorry I don't know why that posted seven times.... Ok cool
Contender
#5
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Dustandashes
I'll just mix up my argument a bit, lol.
Instigator
#4
Wrick-It-Ralph avatar
Added:
--> @Dustandashes
Not at all
Instigator
#3
Ramshutu avatar
#2
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
1.) god is unlikely.
Pro argues god is unlikely. He does this by pointing out all the assumptions required to believe God. I don’t think this is likelihood as much as believability - but I won’t penalize in semantics.
Cons responses are that not believing in God requires faith too. Cons examples intuitively fail in my opinion - con is arguing that I must accept that believing in heaven is the same as believing the sun will rise. That fails to be convincing to me.
Pros counter here is good - pointing out that it is not taken on faith, but on track record of predictive success.
Cons argument that God is not magic, appears mainly semantic. In my view, miracles and magic require the suspension of the physical laws of the universe to achieve some aim that would otherwise be impossible - and as such while pejorative, both pro and cons description appear to require the same amount of faith.
2.) God not coherent with physics.
Pro argues that God is out of line with what is expected in physics, it’s impossible to postulate how God could work. This Appears to be mostly an extension of point 1
Cons rebuttal is that beginnings have causes, and the universe has a beginning. Pro points out that while God could explain the beginning, it is not necessary (there are other explanations)
3.) God is defined too many ways.
Pro points out the innumerable properties of God. Con points out that these are taken from multiple disparate Gods.
Pro points out that these are just from the Bible.
4.) Pascal’s wager
Even if I accept this argument on its face - either neither supports nor negated the resolution so will not be considered.
5.) as per 4.
Note: I would politely suggest that Q&A are not used, I have yet to see one that has any usefulness with regards to affirming or negating the resolution.
As a result of the above, pro upholds the first two main points, in my opinion. The third point is relating only to the Christian God, so works towards the resolution - but does not inherently affirm it.
As a result, on balance I feel that pro did a better job with the opening two points, and as they are fairly generic I feel he establishes his point on balance.
Arguments to pro - all other points tied.
Speedrace avatar
#1
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
I’m basing this off of each premise set forth by Pro and who I think argued for/against it better. I love how short and concise this was.
Arguments
Premise 1:
Pro claims that we must assume a lot of things in order for a God to exist (he argues specifically against the Christian God it seek some here). Con rebuts by saying that we must assume everything, because we have no firm foundation to believe anything if atheism is true. Pro responds by showing how each of the assumptions in an atheistic worldview are likely based on the past and their lack of failure so far. This was sufficient, so premise 1 goes to Pro.
Premise 2:
Pro says that God doesn’t adhere to our model of the universe. Con responds by saying that God is the only cause that could cause our universe. Pro rebuts by saying that other models have more science behind them and that’s the God model hasn’t sufficiently prove do itself. The difficulty with this isn’t that neither responses actually address the original contention: whether or not God adheres to our model of the universe. Because both parties swayed, I’m tying this point.
Premise 3:
Pro says that God is contradictory because of all of the definitions that he has. Con says that it’s unreasonable to use all of the definitions of God from all religions at once, and instead offers a different one. Pro claims that all of the definitions came from the Bible, but he doesn’t actually show where. It shouldn’t be the voter’s job to look that up. He also agrees to Con’s definition. Because of that, Con gets this point.
Premise 4:
Pro offers the modern version of Pascal’s wager and says that atheists are more likely to go to heaven because God is probably nice enough to send them there without them believing. However, he offers no backup evidence of this, so I’m not sure where he got that evaluation from. Con responds by incorrectly rebutting the original Pascal’s wager, and Pro points that out. Because Pro offered no real reasons as to his contentions here, I’m tying this point as well.
Premise 5:
This one is irrelevant.
Each debater got one point, so arguments is tied.
*Tied In All Other Categories*