Living the Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted)

An Atheist Finds God!

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A hardcore atheist finds God when he wasn’t even looking for God. It’s a touching story with a happy ending.

Although the star is having a bit of fun in this video, the point that the video star making is serious. The world is full of people making exactly the sort of logical mistake he’s making in the video. As a result the world is filled with people thinking they have had a personal experience of their version of god yet all these people believe conflicting notions and have no real evidence for their beliefs.

Comments

  1. #1 Jim H
    December 20, 2009

    I can remember taking the Spam sacrament as a child and not liking it very much. Perhaps it is time I anoint myself with His sacred oils again?

  2. #2 DNLee
    December 20, 2009

    I’ll share this with you. I don’t think religion and science have to be at odds. In a practical sense, the evolution-creationism debate doesn’t have to be the knock-down controversy that it is.

    To me, semantics matter and the word BELIEVE is what gets us in trouble. To believe in something implies faith, not fact.
    You can believe (in) something whether or not it can be proven. You can choose NOT to believe (in) something that has been proven, simply because it hasn’t been proven to you.
    For example: I believe in God, but I don’t believe in Evolution. I don’t believe in gravity either. I know that evolution and gravity exist. I trust that if I drop a ball it will fall. I trust that organisms respond the changes in their environment over time. I’ve seen it, and I trust the results presented by other scholars. And whether someone believes in something or not, doesn’t stop it from being true.

    Perhaps it’s all about variation in thought (now I am mingling my science and religous minds, but go along with me). There is natural variation in how people think and interpret the world and interact with people, etc. It is a continuum. On one end – individuals’ values, behaviors, actions, concerns are formed and shaped by concrete/quantifiable experiences with the world. On the other end – individuals’ values, behaviors, actions, concerns are formed and shaped by esoteric experiences best described in qualitative terms.

    I think where one falls on this continuum (plus, whatever early social environment you experienced) has alot to do with where you fall on this continuum.

    I fall in the middle. I am a scientist who believes in God. There’s alot of us out there. I’ve always been a skeptic, but I’ve always felt equally sure that there was some amazing benevolet force out there that beyond my comrehension and abilty to rationally figure out, has always had my back. I cannot reasonably tell you why I am where I am in life. I was no different than any other kid in my neighborhood, but I’ve always been lucky or blessed. I got chances to do stuff and go places and have the means to do it.

    I’m not Christian (believer in God) because there is evidence for God. As a scientist, I cannot provide any physical evidence for God…but I don’t need it. That’s why it’s called faith, it’s a feeling. You believe it or you don’t.

    And if you fall more on the “need concrete proof” side of the axis, I can’t help you, even though I can completely relate to your need to have proof. I try and try, I just don’t know how to explain it to you so you will understand. But if you’re on the other side of the axis, I don’t need to. At the same, I have the darnedest time trying to get those people to understand why some behaviors (on earth) are necessary to sustain our live , eg. take your medicine, water conservation, climate change, etc.

  3. #3 Elsa
    December 20, 2009

    I’m an evolutionary biologist. I also have a faith. I have found far more tolerance and curiosity with people who have a faith than I ever have with the ranting atheists in the science world. And I grew up deep in the Bible Belt, where apparently lots of “stupid” people congregate. Personally, I think that ranting atheists harm science in the public view. It truly isn’t a war. Plus, the arguments become deeply offensive. How many times do people have to explain that faith and science aren’t even on the same axis. There is no conversion factor between those units. They are separate.

    The quite narrow view of many in the rabid atheist world is that people who are Christian are stupid. What I find annoying is that I have to keep my faith very well-covered up, because honestly, that kind of revelation is enough to lose some tenure votes. Pretty frakked up for educated people, I think.

    You know, back in the old days, scientists were respected on the basis of the science they produced, not how prodigious their anti-religion ranting was. Cause, boy is it fun to bash people who believe differently from you. Stupid uneducated people. You get to feel so superior and smart. So fun. It is very open minded. Yup. Real progressive. Real enlightened. Real respectful to others.

    I find it a bit like the concept of hating all Muslims because of the terrorist attacks of a small, but fervent minority. Of course we all know this is wrong.

    Clearly, I am cranky today. And rambling. And in need of an eggnog latte. Perhaps also some chocolate.

  4. #4 anti_supernaturalist
    December 21, 2009

    why religions are intellectually dishonest

    There are altogether no religious phenomena, only religious interpretations of phenomena.

    the anti_supernaturalist

  5. #5 Ellia
    December 21, 2009

    Just shows you can’t make things up to support your beliefs, I mean, if we all did that, how many stupid religions would there be in the world? As a Pastafarian, I personally believe meatballs and pasta to be the actual Divine Meal. This has been proven to me on a number of occasions, when His Noodly Appendage touched my very heart. Whilst I respect the ideal of a Spam diety, I can only hope that this Spamist returns to the truth.

    rAmen.