20 more questions.

As painful as these questions are, here are some more.  As a warning, there are a lot of repeats. This list is a little more vague, but has some merit.

 As always, answers in quotes.

1.What caused the universe to exist?

I don’t know.  Do you?  There are some theories, the most promising is quantum fluctuations.  We may never know and  ’cause’ is a meaningless question when there is no time.

2.What explains the fine tuning of the universe?

The anthropic principle.  I don’t want to explain it all here.  Why is a hole the perfect shape of the puddle that resides in it?

3.Why is the universe rational?

I don’t understand the questions.  I don’t think it is rational, I can’t begin to pretend to rationalize the universe, as a whole.  I have a finite mind.

4.How did DNA and amino acids arise?

This is an area of ongoing research.  Amino acids seem to arise as a natural property of the universe.  It was probably RNA first, then DNA, possibly much later on.   Given enough time and energy, the odds are, it will just happen.

5.Where did the genetic code come from?

See #4.

6.How do irreducibly complex enzyme chains evolve?

I don’t think there is such a thing.  Meaningless question.

7.How do we account for the origin of 116 distinct language families?

I am not a linguist.  How does different languages prove anything other than migration of early humans?  Isolation is a great explanation for the divergence of languages.

8.Why did cities suddenly appear all over the world between 3,000 and 1,000BC?

They did not appear all over the world at that time.  Some were as much as 6,000 year ago, in China, and as late as 700 years ago in the Americas.  How odd, the cities in China dates before the biblical beginning of the universe?

9.How is independent thought possible in a world ruled by chance and necessity?

Seriously malformed question.  I don’t there is something like truly independent thought, most of what we do is driven by chance and necessity.

10.How do we account for self-awareness?

It is either a side effect of really developed temporal lobes or has an evolutionary advantage to be self aware.  Natural selection would favor individuals that have that little bit more drive to survive than those who who not self aware.  That is my view, but I am not a biologist that specialises in neuroscience.  Are you?

11.How is free will possible in a material universe?

Free will is an illusion.  All of our actions are reactions to a previous cause or condition.

12.How do we account for conscience?

Another malformed question.  As sense of good and evil?  Empathy is a great account for it.  Other species have these traits as well.

13.On what basis can we make moral judgements?

Empathy and social norms.

14.Why does suffering matter?

Again, empathy.  I don’t want to suffer, I don’t want other members of my own species to suffer.

15.Why do human beings matter?

Humans matter because I am a human and I matter to myself and I care about other members of my own species.  We want to survive and make the world better for everyone.

16.Why care about justice?

Empathy, empathy, empathy.  To advance as a species, we need justice and there are very very strong natural selection pressures to have morality and justice.

17.How do we account for the almost universal belief in the supernatural?

Humans are pattern seekers and have over active agency detection.  We want to assign meaning and patterns, even if the patterns are random.  We don’t like unknowns.  Go read The God Delusion for a more complete answer.

18.How do we know the supernatural does not exist?

Because we are adults and don’t believe in magic.  Not a good answer?  How about a more reasoned one:  anything that violates the laws of the universe can not exist.  The supernatural, by definition, violates the laws of the universe and does not exist.

19.How can we know if there is conscious existence after death?

By some sort of two way communication between the living and dead.  Conscious existence depends on a living brain, and if the brain stops working, so does consciousness.  A broken watch tells no time.  A broken brain no longer thinks.

20.What accounts for the empty tomb, resurrection appearances and growth of the church?

People are gullible and want a happy lie and don’t want to cease existing.  Simple as that.  Jesus didn’t die for our sins.  I highly doubt he even existed and the gospels are just a bunch of fairy tales.


Even more questions

Just love these silly questions:  This time from Christian Answers.

As always, my:

Answers will be in block quotes.

“If all of life is meaningless, and ultimately absurd , why bother to march straight forward, why stand in the queue as though life as a whole makes sense?” —Francis Schaeffer, The God Who Is There  

What other choice do we have but to move forward and try to enjoy this one, precious life that we have.  I think non believers actually value life and humanity more, since we have to make sure this life counts.  I want to love and be loved and pass on my genes, I have to move forward.

If everyone completely passes out of existence when they die, what ultimate meaning has life? Even if a man’s life is important because of his influence on others or by his effect on the course of history, of what ultimate significance is that if there is no immortality and all other lives, events, and even history itself is ultimately meaningless?

This is really the same question, asked in a slightly different way.  Why do believers do this?  See my previous answer.  Yes, life is ultimately meaningless, who cares?  Something is precious because it does not last.

Suppose the universe had never existed. Apart form God, what ultimate difference would that make?

None at all.  Your point?

In a universe without God or immortality, how is mankind ultimately different from a swarm of mosquitoes or a barnyard of pigs?

We are different because we are human.  We are intelligent primates who can decide on morals, but other species have morals as well, like elephants, dolphins, and our fellow apes.  We make our own morals.  What is wrong with that?

What viable basis exists for justice or law if man is nothing but a sophisticated, programmed machine?

I am perfectly alright with accepting we are nothing more than highly evolved meat computers.  Does not bother me at all, in fact, I think the fact chemical processes can make laws and justice is just amazing.

Why does research, discovery, diplomacy, art, music, sacrifice, compassion, feelings of love, or affectionate and caring relationships mean anything if it all ultimately comes to naught anyway?

See the answers to the previous questions.  Same damn question asked over and over and over.

Without absolute morals, what ultimate difference is there between Saddam Hussein and Billy Graham?

There is none.  Both are apes, both followed relative morality.

If there is no immortality, why shouldn’t all things be permitted?(Dostoyevsky)

For some reason believers can not separate morality with objective morality.  We make morals.  Without humans, there are no human morals.  Objective morality is not a thing.

If morality is only a relative social construct, on what basis could or should anyone ever move to interfere with cultures that practice apartheid, female circumcision, cannibalism, or ethnic cleansing?

We interfere because most normal humans have empathy and want to reduce suffering.  I want to reduce suffering, don’t you?  Or are you like Mother Theresa and enjoy suffering?

If there is no God, on what basis is there any meaning or hope for fairness, comfort, or better times?

Empathy and humanism.  We succeed when we work together and realize we have to do it all ourselves.  The magic sky daddy is not real.

Without a personal Creator-God, how are you anything other than the coincidental, purposeless miscarriage of nature, spinning round and round on a lonely planet in the blackness of space for just a little while before you and all memory of your futile, pointless, meaningless life finally blinks out forever in the endless darkness?

That how the universe works.  Sorry if it makes you feel bad.  The truth is not always happy.  I would rather accept an unhappy truth than a comfortable lie, like you do.   Suck it up and be an adult and embrace the ultimate pointlessness of it all and just enjoy this one, amazing, remarkable, against all odds life together.

Glutton for punishment

I love crappy apologetics and ‘questions for Atheists’  Here are some new ones:

My Answers in block quotes.

1. If there is NO God, then there is no Measurement or Standard for morality?  Then What will define morality?

There is no objective morality.  Morality can be defined which action causes the least harm.  I do not understand why relative morality is a bad thing.

2. If there is NO God, then there is NO meaning or purpose to Life.  So without a God, does life have purpose or meaning?  Without God, does the Atheist have purpose?

Objective meaning?  No.  In 500 million years, all life on Earth will be gone, due to the increasing output of the sun, unless our descendants intervene.  You have to make up your own meaning.  Life just wants to continue, nothing more, nothing less.

3. Are you an advocate of New Atheism and Darwinism?  If so, then the most extreme and logical form of Darwinism is Eugenics.  Would you support this?  Why or Why Not?

Atheism and Darwinism are two separate ideas.  I have been an Atheist for a long time, over 25 years, so I don’t think I am new.  I lean more towards punctuated equilibrium and neo Darwinism.  We are not slaves to our genes, so I don’t know why Eugenics would be the logical conclusion.  This is a malformed question.

4. If we are ancesoters(sic)/descendants of Apes, then why are there no transitional fossils or species to support this theory?

We are apes, and there are many transitional fossils and intermediate species, along with genetic evidence that we have a common ancestor.

5. Do you believe in Human Nature?  It is Human Nature to believe in God, if so, why do you go against human nature and not believe in God?

No I do not.  We have very little built in instincts.  Sadly, we know this from ‘lost children’.  We are the product of our environment and culture.

6. Can ‘Something come from Nothing’?  Doesn’t that violate The First Law of Thermodynamics?

Yes, happens all the time at the quantum level, such as quantum fluctuations.  The First Law of Thermodynamics did not apply at the start of the universe, since the law did not exist yet.

7. It seems that a society of Atheist are immoral and self-destructing.  Why would anyone want a Godless Society, just look at our examples: North Korea, Maoist China, Stalin, & Pot Pol?

You can also look at Sweden, most of  Europe, and China, India, Japan, etc, all of whom do not believe in any god or your god and they are doing just fine.  Sweden is almost 70% Atheist, and they are doing just fine.

8. If you were to die, and you were before God.  And he was getting ready to pass judgement on you,  What would be your reaction or thoughts?  What plea would you give him so he does not judge you harshly?

I would be angry that it did not provide any proof and let me burn.  Petty, hidden, immoral god.  I would not plea with a bully.

9. What would convince you atheism is wrong?  And that Christianity is Right?

You should ask your god that.  I really have no idea.  Every religion in the world, with the same vision of god would be a good start, but that is not the case.  I think an omnipotent being is a self refuting concept.  You can’t have an infinite inside of a finite.

10. Why are you an Atheist?  Why do you NOT believe in God?  Why do you reject God?  (You can be as detailed as you want.)

I see no reason to believe.  There is no evidence, and believing in a fantasy is no way to live.  Even the very concept of an omnipotent god in a universe of 600,000,000,000 galaxies, with 100,000,000,000 stars, each, has no room for a god.  It is a silly concept and useless waste of time.