"If you define religion as, "a cause, principle, or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith", then I agree with Derp. Atheism is a religion."
I will bring up the fascinating point of semantics once again. If one considers "system of beliefs" to be a descriptive term, with "belief" as a noun, as a synonym for stance, position, opinion, viewpoint, etc... then I am more inclined to agree with you.
If you use MG's use of believING, as a verb, then I agree with that too. Atheism is the absence of action. Just like abstinence.
I don't like the above definition because of its vagueness, though. Couldn't a whole slew of things could fall under its umbrella? Is left-wing liberalism perhaps a religion?
"If you have "no idea" how old the Earth is, are you curious to find out? Do you think knowing something about that is worthwhile? Do you realize things like this can be known?"
Curious? Sure. Is it of importance to me? Not really. I beleive that God spoke the Earth, stars, and everything on Earth into existence. I believe that God is big enough to do this in a combined total of about 30 seconds (long enough to speak the words six days in a row). Now, how long that actually took? I don't know. I don't know God's calendar. One day to God may be a thousand years to us. The Bible really doesn't give a diffinitve age of the Earth as far as I can tell from reading. I think some of the estimates (and yes, by some religous people) are simply us trying to understand it. I have to stop here and say that I am one of the ones that has thought the Earth was about 7,000 years old at one time. I have changed my position on that because I have studied the Bible and don't believe that to be biblical. Knowing is good, but at the same time not all that supremely important, IMO.
" how can you prove it to someone"
Open the Bible and show them. If their mind is open and heart prepared, they are going to be able to accept it (1 Corinthians 2:14). Why blood? I don't know. That has been the thing that covered sin since the very beginning. All I can do for someone is open the Bible show them the gift they have been given, explain why Jesus is who He said He was, show prophecy about Him, show Old Testament stories that point to him from as far back as Genesis, give personal testimony, and let God work on the person. I would allow for the pastor, who has a doctorate in this stuff, go into the more scholarly stuff if they have questions we can't get past. Just like if we are going to hire someone, the preacher has me sit in with them. I do that everyday and so he would want to consult with someone that does HR for a living.
"This sounds exactly like you are denying it."
How am I denying it? I have called my self a sinner on more than one occasion during this conversation. Absolutely not denying that I'm a mess. I am simply telling you that my sin is covered. The thing here is that I don't see my salvation as a license to sin. I try my best not to.
"Why? What have I said that would be in anyway bothersome to the unsaved person that you used to be?"
I was referring to all the writing we are both doing. I wouldn't have given you this kind of time or attention.
"that just because we can't know everything doesn't mean we shouldn't try to know anything."
I have not said that one time. If I have implied that is was unintentional. Sure, try to find things out. I am going to stop there because I am asking my pastor for some help with this to give some further insight. It will help me answer your questions better, and make me a little better prepared next time I am asked.
" then you have relinquished your status as a thinking being in favor of a slave mentality. You might find ecstasy in this state of profound ignorance, but when you recommend it as a lifestyle to vulnerable youths you commit an atrocity."
God never once said to stop thinking. You call me a slave. I say no, I have actually been freed. And I agree that we have reached the end of meaningful conversation when you want to call someone ignorant.
"So, you live your life as if there were no gods, correct?"
- No, I live my life not knowing whether there is a God, today.
"So what exactly is our disagreement?"
- You are resisting my teaching. You are not an atheist, you are a dunno, just like me.
You are one of my early converts. From now on you're message board name will be, "The Dunno Hoot".
"I don't like the above definition because of its vagueness, though."
"Couldn't a whole slew of things could fall under its umbrella?"
"Is left-wing liberalism perhaps a religion?"
No one here, on either side, is really wanting to have a discussion, are they? Just slinging sh**... like you suggested earlier.
I prayed you would shut up.
There is no god.
I have sorta lost interest in being a dunno.
I'm a ontological nihilist now. I never asked to receive life. Life was imposed upon me against my will.
I was seriously thinking about this last night when I posted to forsight about free will... I never ASKED to live! I feel like I've been raped into life!
"No one here, on either side, is really wanting to have a discussion"
I'd like to exempt astatecard and myself from this. Will you assent?
You are absolutely right. You guys had a decent discussion that I found somewhat interesting, and you yourself tried your best to be civil... ;)
There was something nostalgic about it, actually. It reminded me of the primitive days of this board.