Monday, January 20, 2014

Atheism Defeated / Hinduism


It was interesting to watch the video "Atheism Defeated" recently. (Please watch the above short video before reading my comments below).


The video shows that atheists are concerned about Presuppositional Apologetics and approaches such as those by Sye Ten Bruggencate (www.proofthatgodexists.org) because they spend so much time arguing against it. At the end of the video he reveals that Hindu gods are his source of revelation. (Although he does not actually believe in any gods as he is a professed atheist and his intention is to parody / mock Christianity.)

However, Hinduism and Christianity are poles apart. Hindus believe in the Vedas but these do not claim to be the inerrant word of any gods. Hindus also hold that the Bhagavad Gita is a holy book, but as god in Hinduism is not personal it cannot be the revelation of a personal god - so why should we accept it or listen to what it says? Hindus do not believe in certain knowledge or absolute truth, but believe that everything is illusion (maya). As the maker of this video isn't a Hindu there isn't much point going too deep into this - I'm just pointing out that once again an attempt to refute the biblical God falls apart on closer inspection.

For further reading on other religions including Hinduism see my website at the following link: http://www.godorabsurdity.com/other-religions.html.

28 comments:

  1. I am the creator of this video and I can say without any hesitation that you couldn't be more wrong about it. It is not an attempt to refute the biblical God. Nor am I in any way concerned about Presuppositional apologetics. I don't know any atheist who IS concerned about it, for that matter, unless that concern is with why anyone would believe it is still being presented as valid.

    Furthermore, as a Christian you are hardly in a position to speak on what any individual Hindu believes. Just as with Christianity, Hinduism is changing as our understanding of the world around us is enhanced by scientific and societal progress.

    I would love to talk to you one on one and clear up your misconceptions about this video, only I would prefer to have it be public. I host a web show on sundays at 5pm eastern standard time (US) and would be more than happy to set up a discussion with you about not only my video but why I'm anything but "concerned" about Presuppositional apologetics.

    Take care and thanks for watching!

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  2. Thanks Fezzik. I appreciate your comment. As a Christian I'm in a good position to know whether or not other claims are true or false because I know that the Bible is true via certain revelation from God. What is your justification for knowledge? Are you a Hindu?

    I'm not sure if I'm available at that time for a discussion but I'll try to let you know. Keep in touch.

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    1. You can just call me Mathew, I don't know why this is still showing up as "Fezzik." I'll have to change that. As for this:

      "As a Christian I'm in a good position to know whether or not other claims are true or false because I know that the Bible is true via certain revelation from God."

      Why should I believe that to be true? Why should I believe that you can do as you say? I mean the part about knowing that the Bible is true... why should I believe you when you say that?

      "What is your justification for knowledge?"

      What do you mean by that? In this context, what do you mean by knowledge? I'd like to answer honestly, and to do so, I'll need you to clarify what you mean by "knowledge." People have very different concepts of what that term means, after all. I could tell you what I know but be using a different definition than you are, and vice versa.

      I'll be happy to discuss other times to have that conversation. Thanks and take care.

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    2. If Jesus rose from the grave, then we can trust that the Bible is the very Word of God. The Christian faith hinges on an external, objective event in history - the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth.

      - Andy Wrasman

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    3. Thanks for your comments Andy and Matthew, and sorry for the slow response. (Although we've recently discussed these things on Facebook). I agree with Andy that the resurrection is unique and an objective fact that sets Christianity apart, however, this alone is not proof that the Bible is true. The proof that the Bible is true and that God exists is that without him you can't prove anything. The reason for this Matthew is that without God you can't get knowledge (justified true belief) and you can't get truth. What is truth without God? Truth is what is real right? But how do you know what is real? Without God you can't know anything to be real, and therefore can't know anything to be true. In order to justify any knowledge you need to either have revelation from an all-knowing God, or be all knowing yourself, otherwise you could be wrong in what you believe.

      For more on all of this see my website www.godorabsurdity.com

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    4. You seem to be saying that God (X) justifies knowledge and truth, and while I agree that X is necessary if someone makes objective truth claims, I'm not convinced by your claim that it's the god of the bible. I'm not convinced that you receive revelation either. If you don't feel it's necessary to rationally support your claims that's fine, but anyone is justified being skeptical of your claims if your justification is a special pleading logical fallacy.

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    5. Yes, the biblical God is the necessary precondition for knowledge. I know this by revelation from God, and if you reject it you can't know anything. What's your justification for knowledge? If you have no problem with validating your reasoning using your reasoning then you are obviously using the special pleading logical fallacy.

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    6. Brendan this is disappointing. I am still unconvinced of your claims, and I don't see any justification for your claims. You seem to be telling me that I'm not allowed to be skeptical of a claim without seeing any justification for that claim, and that just increases my skepticism.

      We still haven't gotten to my reasoning at all, I'm still trying to figure out these claims I keep hearing that are presented for me to simply accept because you say so? If you say it's actually your particular god that's given me a source for knowledge, simply because you say so, then I am more skeptical than ever.

      Did you justify your claim somewhere that I missed? Specifically, that "the biblical God is the necessary precondition for knowledge." If you've rationally justified that claim anywhere and I just haven't noticed, I'll be more than happy to admit as much.

      I've already admitted also that I agree that anyone who says they have objective knowledge would require either omniscience or revelation from someone or something that is omniscient, at least twice now as I recall. All I've heard from you however is claims to objective knowledge, which means you are therefore either omniscient or have received revelation from someone or something that is, or you are mistaken or being deceptive. So of those four options:

      1) You are omniscient
      2) You have received objective knowledge from someone who is omniscient
      3) You are mistaken
      4) You are being deceptive

      You seem to be claiming #2 is correct, but from what you've said so far, I haven't been convinced that this is in fact the correct option. I'd love to be shown why I'm wrong.

      Now if you admit you are not omniscient, a counter point to your argument would be:

      A) Human beings are fallible
      B) You and I are human beings
      C) You and I are fallible

      Therefore even if you HAVE received objective knowledge from an omniscient entity, you could be mistaken nonetheless due to your own fallibility.

      I await your response to this massive problem in your argument.

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    7. //Brendan this is disappointing. I am still unconvinced of your claims, and I don't see any justification for your claims.//

      Sorry that you are disappointed, but the problem isn't at my end. Proof and persuasion are two different things. The problem is that you don't want to be convinced because you are "suppressing the truth in unrighteousness"

      // You seem to be telling me that I'm not allowed to be skeptical of a claim without seeing any justification for that claim, and that just increases my skepticism.//

      Can you be skeptical of your skepticism? The thing is that you know that God exists, but you don't want to acknowledge God because you prefer your sin. I pray that you would repent and stop denying the God you already know but are suppressing.

      //We still haven't gotten to my reasoning at all, I'm still trying to figure out these claims I keep hearing that are presented for me to simply accept because you say so?//

      It's not my personal revelation. You can check it out for yourself in the Bible.

      // If you say it's actually your particular god that's given me a source for knowledge, simply because you say so, then I am more skeptical than ever.//

      You already know the God of the Bible exists, but you don't want to know him.

      //Did you justify your claim somewhere that I missed? Specifically, that "the biblical God is the necessary precondition for knowledge." If you've rationally justified that claim anywhere and I just haven't noticed, I'll be more than happy to admit as much.//

      Without God you can't know anything because you can't justify any knowledge as you could be wrong about everything. Until you show how you escape using your reasoning to validate your reasoning, without appealing to a god that you don't believe in then your every sentence is confirming that you do know God, because you are making knowledge claims but can't justify them.

      //I've already admitted also that I agree that anyone who says they have objective knowledge would require either omniscience or revelation from someone or something that is omniscient, at least twice now as I recall. All I've heard from you however is claims to objective knowledge, which means you are therefore either omniscient or have received revelation from someone or something that is, or you are mistaken or being deceptive. So of those four options:

      1) You are omniscient
      2) You have received objective knowledge from someone who is omniscient
      3) You are mistaken
      4) You are being deceptive

      You seem to be claiming #2 is correct, but from what you've said so far, I haven't been convinced that this is in fact the correct option. I'd love to be shown why I'm wrong.//

      Yes, number 2 is correct, and if you deny it your worldview is reduced to absurdity.

      //Now if you admit you are not omniscient, a counter point to your argument would be:

      A) Human beings are fallible
      B) You and I are human beings
      C) You and I are fallible

      Therefore even if you HAVE received objective knowledge from an omniscient entity, you could be mistaken nonetheless due to your own fallibility. I await your response to this massive problem in your argument.//

      No problem at all here - God has revealed some things to us such that we can know them for certain. So I could not be wrong about God's existence for example. And this revelation is not dependent on my fallible reasoning - God has revealed it innately, through creation, and through his Word.

      The massive problem you have is that you've not been able to justify the validity of your reasoning. So until you do so every sentence you write presupposes the truth of my worldview.

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    8. “Sorry that you are disappointed, but the problem isn't at my end. Proof and persuasion are two different things. The problem is that you don't want to be convinced because you are "suppressing the truth in unrighteousness" “

      Are you saying that when you just state your opinion, that counts as proof of the validity of that opinion? Are you the God that you believe in, or are you a fallible human being?

      “Can you be skeptical of your skepticism? The thing is that you know that God exists, but you don't want to acknowledge God because you prefer your sin. I pray that you would repent and stop denying the God you already know but are suppressing.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “It's not my personal revelation. You can check it out for yourself in the Bible.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “You already know the God of the Bible exists, but you don't want to know him.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “Without God you can't know anything because you can't justify any knowledge as you could be wrong about everything. Until you show how you escape using your reasoning to validate your reasoning, without appealing to a god that you don't believe in then your every sentence is confirming that you do know God, because you are making knowledge claims but can't justify them.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “Yes, number 2 is correct, and if you deny it your worldview is reduced to absurdity.”

      Number 2 is correct because you say so? Considering the poor quality of the arguments I've heard from you so far, I don't see why anyone could accept anything other than #3 or #4.

      “No problem at all here - God has revealed some things to us such that we can know them for certain. So I could not be wrong about God's existence for example. And this revelation is not dependent on my fallible reasoning - God has revealed it innately, through creation, and through his Word.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “The massive problem you have is that you've not been able to justify the validity of your reasoning. So until you do so every sentence you write presupposes the truth of my worldview.”

      I suppose that's how you presuppositional apologists are able to tell yourselves that no one has beaten your “arguments,” because I've thoroughly and completely destroyed it, rationally speaking. Until you realize that your claims are just that, claims, you and the other guys (Sye included) will continue to not be taken seriously. When you actually defend your claims rather than simply asserting that they're true “just because you say so” then I'll address your response, otherwise I'll consider my refutation a complete success.

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    9. How do you know your reasoning is valid? You've not answered that question because you know you can't. How do you know anything to be true in your worldview? Again, you've not answered that because you know you can't. If God was proven to you to your satisfaction would you worship Him? I'm noticing a pattern here of me asking questions and you not answering them. What I've said isn't true because I've said so, but because you can't get truth without God, and I think anyone who takes the time to read your responses and how you've ducked and dived to avoid the real issues will see through your hollow claim of success.

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    10. At the beginning I also asked you "What is your justification for knowledge?" You've totally avoided that question too. The reason is because your own mind is your justification for knowledge - but you don't know if anything you believe is true or not because you can't validate your reasoning - so your tactic is to avoid questions, and try to ask me questions, then ignore my answers. If God did not exist you couldn't even make sense of your questions, because you wouldn't be able to know what truth or reality is.

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    11. "I'm noticing a pattern here of me asking questions and you not answering them."

      I find it very interesting that whenever the massive holes in your assertions are pointed out, you go back to the script. I asked you for clarification of the first question you asked me. That is not ducking anything, and claiming it is a dodge is just a way to distract from your own repeated dodges. The fact remains that I responded honestly to your question, asked one of my own, and you have still not answered it after three weeks. Any subsequent questions you have asked are irrelevant if you are unable to answer that first question, that's why I keep repeating it.

      Now you responded that knowledge is justified true belief, then commenced to ask more questions without answering mine. That is not conducive to a productive discussion and it is out of generosity that I've humored you for this long. If you are not able to answer the question that I asked you in good faith over three weeks ago, which I will restate here for clarity's sake:

      ________

      As for this:

      "As a Christian I'm in a good position to know whether or not other claims are true or false because I know that the Bible is true via certain revelation from God."

      Why should I believe that to be true? Why should I believe that you can do as you say? I mean the part about knowing that the Bible is true... why should I believe you when you say that?

      ________


      You have not answered it, and all of my responses have been a way to clarify it for you in such a way that you would. If you can't, or won't, then you are interested in preaching, not having a discussion, not showing me why what you say is actually true, and unjustified assertions are a dime a dozen. I've made NO unjustified assertions throughout, and have not engaged in your script, and will not do so until you are able to answer this simple question.

      Further to that, I've also granted that for someone to justify objective knowledge about reality external to the mind, an external source must be responsible. So we agree on that. I am not claiming anything about this external source, YOU ARE. You carry the burden of proof and I will not be so foolish as to allow you to shift it.

      The only tactic I am using here is expecting you to actually answer the question asked of you, after I'd answered yours in good faith. You are breaching a great many rules of etiquette in this discussion even though I'm trying to maintain them, and if you continue doing so, I'll have no course of action but to accept this as an attempt to escape the uncomfortable position you are in. I am in no such position, and my arguments are wholly supported by rationality with regards to every point I've made so far.

      I would also be happy to discuss the nature of this external source of objective knowledge but for you to claim you KNOW what it is, and furthermore that I also know what it is, that is what you have not justified. It's that simple.

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    12. I've answered all of your questions and given proof that God exists, but you don't accept that proof. Proof and persuasion are two different things. In your lengthy response you've still not answered my questions, so I'll ask them again - How do you know your reasoning is valid? What is truth? How do you get truth without God? How do you know what reality is without God? If I proved to you to your satisfaction that God existed would you worship God? This isn't a script - it's asking you questions that you can't answer and that expose the fact that you do already know that God exists. This is your last chance to at least make an attempt to answer my questions. If you will not answer them, as moderator of my blog I'll have to delete any further comments that do not attempt to answer my questions, as it's getting rather ridiculous the lengths you are going to in your attempts to suppress the truth about the God you do know, but are in denial about.

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    13. I'd also like to point out that it's nonsense to claim I've breached any 'rules of etiquette'. A, I haven't, and B, how do you get any objective moral rules without God? If we are just stardust as atheists claim, why should it matter what one bit of stardust does to another bit of stardust. I've tried very hard to give clear and concise answers to all of your questions, and to have you claim I've been uncivil is just plainly absurd.

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    14. Please show me where you answered that question? I don't see it anywhere. I'll be happy to answer your questions if you'll answer mine as well.

      I most certainly can answer your questions, by the way, and it is also a script that we hear quite often, even though those questions are often asked in such a way that I'm reminded of "When did you stop beating your wife?" As in phrased in such a way that they cannot be properly answered by anyone. That being said, if you can show me where you've given me an answer for why I should believe your claims about the nature of the necessary source for objective knowledge, we can continue this discussion.

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    15. I don't find your questions at all difficult, I don't know what gave you that idea.

      I ask you for why I should believe your claim, and you haven't answered that question at all. Remember, I admit that an external source for an objective knowledge claim is required, but you are asserting the nature of that source without answering my question of why I should accept your assertion. That's the same question I've been asking you for three weeks and no, you still haven't answered it.

      If I were a student and you the teacher, and I were taking a test that you were giving in class, and one of the questions on the test (which was written by the teacher) was something I missed, my first recourse would be to ask the teacher why I missed the answer. Rather than answering why I missed the answer, the teacher only gives the correct answer as defined by the test he himself wrote. That answers the WHAT but not the WHY. My question is the WHY, and no you most certainly have not answered it. If you continue to assert that you have answered it when I've clearly shown how you have not, then I'll have no alternative but to assume you can't or won't do so, and my skepticism of your claims will thus be justified until I can find someone who uses this particular apologetic who can or will answer it.

      I hope you don't take this as a dodge because I couldn't be more sincere about wanting to continue this dialogue, however you are the one who is holding it up by not answering a very simple and straightforward question.

      Now in good faith, I'll go back to the question you clarified at the beginning BEFORE I asked you my own question (which you still haven't answered.)

      "What is your justification for knowledge?"

      That was the only question you asked me before my own question, so that is the only one you are therefore justified in expecting me to answer (until you answer mine.)

      My justification for knowledge about external reality is through the revelation of an external source or sources of verification, with the degree of knowledge being dependent on their correspondence to each other. Since it is by revelation from these multiple sources, I have no choice but to accept them, based of course on the extent of the corroborative external verification.

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    16. Thank you for finally attempting to answer 1 of my questions. (Although it made no sense at all, and you falsely accused me of not answering your question). Until you attempt to answer the rest of my questions I will go no further and reserve the right to delete any comments that do not answer them. I will repeat the questions below:

      How do you know your reasoning is valid? What is truth? How do you get truth without God? How do you know what reality is without God? If I proved to you to your satisfaction that God existed would you worship God?

      I'll also ask you a follow up question - how do you know that your justification for knowledge is valid? When you justify your knowledge do you use your internal reasoning to interpret things? If so, how do you know that your reasoning is valid?

      All of these questions are very important because if you cannot give satisfactory answers to them then you can't know anything to be true - which is related to the proof that God exists which I've given to you already.

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    17. Brendan, the approach I've taken with you can be clearly outlined here, if you're confused why I haven't simply allowed you to get away with avoiding answering questions, then pretending like someone else is being unreasonable. I made it very clear early in our discussion that I had one question which you simply refused to answer, then pretended that you did. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mssq45r-6Jk

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    18. You are welcome to make a video. The publicity will do more to get the word out there. I had a look at the video above and it's more of the same - you should title the video 'How to hide from God and how to avoid answering honest questions.' That seems to be an increasingly common tactic these days. (And then for bonus points claim that the Christian is not answering your questions even when they've already answered them).

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  3. And for bonus bonus points claim that you've won the debate (as you did in a previous comment which I deleted). The thing is though that to win presupposes an ultimate standard of truth in order to know you've got the truth, and you can't know that in your worldview because you're denying the ultimate source of truth - Jesus Christ who is the Truth, and in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

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    Replies
    1. Original question (still unanswered):

      Why should I believe that to be true? Why should I believe that you can do as you say? I mean the part about knowing that the Bible is true... why should I believe you when you say that?

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    2. I've already answered that. I said before and will say it again, the proof that God exists is that without him you can't prove anything. The Bible is true because if it weren't nothing could be true. How do you get truth without God? You can't know even 1 thing to be true. If you think you can - then tell me what is 1 thing you know for sure is true, and how do you know it? What is truth? Truth is what conforms to reality, but how do you know what is real? Einstein said that the true nature of the universe we shall never know, and he was right in terms of not being able to know reality if we reject God.

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    3. Brendan I'm going to give you the benefit of a doubt that you just don't understand the question. I'll rephrase. The source of knowledge that we both agree MUST exist which provides revelation of truth about reality external to our minds... you claim it's the god of the bible. You are merely asserting the identity of this source without providing any justification whatsoever. So no, you are not answering the question. Why should I, or anyone, believe you? If you'll simply answer the question I'll be happy to answer anything you want to ask. Just provide an answer for why I should believe your claim about the identity of the source of knowledge.

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    4. //Brendan I'm going to give you the benefit of a doubt that you just don't understand the question. I'll rephrase.//

      I've answered your question again and again, but you don't accept my answer. Proof and persuasion are not the same thing.

      // The source of knowledge that we both agree MUST exist which provides revelation of truth about reality external to our minds... you claim it's the god of the bible.//

      I'm not claiming it's the God of the Bible - I know it's the God of the Bible - and so do you but you're suppressing the truth, as has been very clear by your evasive tactics to try and avoid answering my questions.

      // You are merely asserting the identity of this source without providing any justification whatsoever.//

      How do you know that? You've not provided any logical way for you to know anything in your worldview. I've provided clear justification for what I know is true - revelation from God - but you hate God and are not only apathetic towards God but actively hostile in your opposition to him, as evidenced by your concerted efforts here and on YouTube to speak against God. The fact that you spend so much time trying to refute God is because you know God exists but don't want it to be true.

      // So no, you are not answering the question. Why should I, or anyone, believe you?//

      How would you know if I had answered the question given the fact that you can't justify any knowledge or any truth in your worldview? You gave a wordy waffly and meaningless answer earlier to your justification for knowledge that made absolutely no sense at all, and that you have not explained or even tried to explain how you know it or anything else you've said to be true. People should believe what I say because it's true, and if it weren't true nothing could be true - as has been clear from your avoidance of my questions relating to how you know anything to be true in your worldview.

      // If you'll simply answer the question I'll be happy to answer anything you want to ask. Just provide an answer for why I should believe your claim about the identity of the source of knowledge.//

      What kind of an answer would you accept? It's becoming more and more clear that you would not accept any evidence. But if I did prove conclusively to you that God exists and the Bible is true, would you worship God? I doubt you would as it's clear you hate God, and have devoted much of your life to trying to refute God because you love your sin.

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    5. "I've answered your question again and again, but you don't accept my answer. Proof and persuasion are not the same thing. "

      The justification for why anyone should accept the statement that the deity in the Bible is the only possible source of knowledge, that's all I'm asking you to provide... whether or not I accept that answer is my responsibility, not yours. If you just provide a rational explanation, it's on me to accept it, so persuasion doesn't apply.

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    6. I will be happy to carefully answer each and every point you've made in this entire thread, and I do mean that sincerely, if you'll answer this one question as it is asked. You say revelation, I say again why should I believe the claims you make about the source of objective knowledge concerning external reality being necessarily from the biblical deity? It's not a difficult question and I'm doing my best to think of new ways to phrase it so it's easier to understand.

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    7. I've already answered your questions but you don't accept my answers. We could go on forever like this, but I really do have better things to do with my time than deal with people who are just trolling. I've not only answered your questions here but also in other forums, and you've consistently rejected my answers, and refused to even try to answer nearly all of my questions. How will you know when I've answered your question given the fact that I've already answered it but you've ignored my answer?

      Why the biblical deity? Because there are no other deities.

      Psalm 96:5 “For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the heavens.”

      I'm pretty sure I've already mentioned this before. It's clearly explained in another of my blog posts http://brendantruthseeker.blogspot.co.nz/2013/12/what-about-other-gods-by-sye-ten.html

      If you won't answer my questions and continue wasting my time by using evasion tactics I will have to block you from this blog. Last chance to start answering some of my questions - how do you know anything to be true in your worldview? If I proved to you that God exists to your satisfaction would you worship Him?

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