Well, after breaking 2000 comments on the previous thread, I think it’s time to move to a new one. Feel free to continue the conversation here.
Also, I want to make a note about future posts. The tone on this blog for the last month or so has been decidedly different than what it used to be. While that’s definitely made things interesting, I’d like to move back to a tone more in line with the way things used to be. So going forward, I want the comments on all new posts to remain civil. We can all make our points, and I expect to see a wide range of opinions. But I don’t want to get into name-calling and bashing when we can’t all agree on particular issues. Let’s try to stay focused on the points and not get side-tracked with personal stuff. Let’s also keep each comment substantive so we don’t rack up so many comments in such a short period of time that it’s hard for everyone to keep track.
If you don’t feel like you can participate within those guidelines, then feel free to continue posting within this thread (and any future “Kathy” threads, if they’re needed), because I won’t be enforcing any guidelines here. But if you want to comment on any other posts, you’ll need to abide by the rules I just laid out. Otherwise, your comment will be subject to deletion, and after a warning, you might find yourself banned from at least that thread, if not the entire blog.
If there are any questions, let me know.
1,249 thoughts on “Kathy Part 3”
Good move. On atheist blogs I find it is easy to get nice long comment threads if the blog encourage the name-calling sorts. Enforcing civil dialogue will drop your numbers but will be worth it.
“Its apparent even now that a week is not good enough. take a few weeks guys. maybe just maybe you will get a little better doing research.” – mike
I’m not sure what you’re asking for, or who you’re asking, I just want to remind you that there are points you haven’t answered after much more than one week.
and when arguing for a belief in something, typically the one who holds a belief will present the evidence that makes them believe.
Asking someone to provide evidence that supports why they dont believe in something doesn’t make as much sense – although we’ve supplied evidence as to why we dont believe in the bible’s divine origins…
that’s why we’ve tried illustrating that point with bigfoot and aliens. belief in those things isnt viewed as a default position – instead most of us require strong supporting evidence – and have historically not been convinced by the photos, video or eye-witness testimony that alien and bigfoot believers believe to be strong evidence if not all out proof.
Similarly, many of us are not convinced by the claims of the bible or the so called supporting evidence. It doesnt even have photos or video and all the eye-witness are dead, with strong evidence that their testimonies were written long after the alleged events took place.
I dont believe in krauss’ hypothesis, nor do I care if you believe them, so how could I provide evidence or proof for them? You claim to believe in the bible, and i thought that you have said there was clear evidence for believing it was from god – present this evidence.
If you believe despite the presence of string evidence, then you shouldnt be surprised that many are not convinced.
Mocking krauss does not prove the bible, just as mocking the bible does not prove krauss.
Thanks Sabio 🙂
Hi Nate – great post! I love the idea of civil dialogue – I’m not sure I’ll have a lot of time to post much, but when I do I’ll do my best to adhere to the guidelines.
I hope we can all follow the guidelines here, even if they’re not enforced in thread.
(I’ll speak generally here, about those of us deconverts who did so on account of research. Feel free to chime in if I (mis)represent you.)
As I understood it, the point of “Letter to Kathy, Part 2” was to show a few of the questions Nate (and other researched deconverts) have wrestled with–not to deconvert her (or anyone). It was to show that we questioned honestly, in good faith, whether the truth claims that we dearly held as such for so long are indeed true. Our questions–and later, disbelief–did not come from a place of willful, prideful disobedience or belligerence.
Kathy, if you could accept that about us, then from my perspective, it’d be up to you as to whether you want to examine the evidence with us. But it seems so far you haven’t believed our claims of honest assessment, so we proceeded to discuss some bits of evidence, in an attempt to demonstrate some of our thought processes, toward that initial goal. And… It got out of hand… You dig your heels in, and so did we, and there went the original idea.
So, Kathy, do you still think we’re *all* willfully, ignorantly, rebelliously blinding ourselves to the “Truth”?
Yeah, I think you’re right, ratamacue. While we definitely got sidetracked quite a bit, I agree that the initial intent was just to show that we were sincere in our beliefs as Christians, and just as sincere in our exit from Christianity.
I’d say if Kathy has been convinced of our sincerity, that’s great! And if she hasn’t, then there’s really nothing else that can be said anyway.
Nate, I’m not sure I understand. You are or are not going to enforce guidelines for “Kathy” posts? The way I read it, the guidelines are for any other postings, but not the ones directed to “Kathy.” Did I misread?
me: “And you failed to answer my question.. what archaeological evidence “should” we have to prove Paul was preaching in a specific area??”
you: “Since Paul is credited by many as starting the religion of Christianity, I would think there would be statues, inscriptions , or something. Instead, all you can say is , “Tradition tells us”
That’s all you have.”
And this is another popular incorrect assumption by atheists. Pilate, who ordered that Jesus be executed, was a Roman official.. and all we have for him is ONE inscription. And it was Romans were the ones known for their statues and plaques etc.. not Jews.. especially when the religious leadership were trying to kill Christians.. who’s supposed to be erecting these statues etc?? Yet another example of a lack of objectivity.. especially since I’ve already brought up this point.
Kathy,”The article also references Bart Ehrman. It’s an opinion piece by a non Christian which references the opinions of other non Christians, which makes the article useless to anyone seeking objectivity.”
Bart Ehrman is STILL a scholar of the bible and yet because he became a non-believer , his scholarly knowledge no longer counts in your opinion. I suppose you discount ALL Jewish scholars and archaeologists because they are Jewish ?”
His opinion should be considered but with skepticism…. when ONLY one side’s opinions are being referenced, that’s a credibility problem.
“Kathy, no where does it say you have to believe in Christianity to be a Scholar. Only an indoctrinated person would accept the works of Christian Believing Scholars only.
Pretty Silly !”
I didn’t say that… “pretty silly” for sure.
“The article references a total of 3 scholars on that point… how is that a “general” agreement? (it isn’t).”
“Kathy, you obviously can’t comprehend what you read. To reference 3 scholars does NOT mean they were the only ones who agreed with his article.”
But it ALSO doesn’t support in any way that the majority agreed with the belief of “4 Pauls”.
I challenge that claim.
“The Bible references a few people who were supposedly healed by Jesus. Do you believe he healed more than the ones mentioned ? Silly Silly Silly”
“Silly” analogy, kc.
@ Nate & Ratamacue
Nate, you said:
“I’d say if Kathy has been convinced of our sincerity, that’s great! And if she hasn’t, then there’s really nothing else that can be said anyway.”
I’m convinced that you all are very sincere in wanting to disprove the existence of God.. but I’m also fully convinced that you all lack objectivity when debating this question. I know you don’t agree but I’m basing my opinion on the exchanges I’ve had with you and others.
My best example would be the question I presented to you asking which religion you believed had the most evidence to support it’s “truth”/Truth. You haven’t followed through with this question. I don’t feel like I’ve gotten honest answers.. only attempts to obfuscate.. maybe not in the beginning, but as the issue progressed for sure.
Arch is another example.. I’ve presented to him a great example of “evidence”.. that he himself has used to make HIS points.. but when I ask him the same question about which religion has the most evidence.. he disappears.. all of a sudden he has “technical” difficulties. This is my evidence that you all are not apply honest objectivity.
And William and Ark have been asking me repeatedly lately for my evidence that the Bible is true.. these 3 threads are FULL of my comments addressing this question.. giving the evidence.
It’s become a game.. and it’s 100% dishonest. There is clearly no real desire of “FINDING TRUTH”… I have no doubt about this. I don’t know how the atheists here expect this to all turn out.. denying truth, pretending you aren’t in a “corner” with your erroneous beliefs, isn’t going to change the truth or how it all turns out.. I don’t understand this mentality.. at all. It’s not rational.
“And William and Ark have been asking me repeatedly lately for my evidence that the Bible is true.. these 3 threads are FULL of my comments addressing this question.. giving the evidence.” kathy
kathy, fair enough. I’ve address all the evidence you’ve provided. If there’s nothing else you have to offer, then thank you for your time – i don’t think we have anything else to go over.
You’re convinced by it and i am not. You think I lack objectivity and I think the same of you. We’re at an impasse, i guess.
Take care, and thanks for conversing.
nate, I look forward to your next post.
William, you said:
“Kathy, why do any of them have to be true?
and how do you know that christianity is the only true one?
It looks like you’re starting off with an assumed position, and them simply declaring that christianity is “true.” If i wrong, could you walks us down you logic for determining that christianity is the one true religion and why there must be one true religion?
I really just dont see it. This is why we’ve been asking for your evidence – to help us understand where you’re coming from and so that we might weigh this evidence for ourselves. ”
William, I’ve already “walked you down” my logic for why I believe that the God of the Bible is our Creator.. I’m not going to do it again.. you are playing games.. or you are a product of the 60s.. which I’ve asked you if you are but you never answered me.. it’s one or the other.. mental issues or dishonesty. I don’t know of any other option. I can’t repeat myself over and over.. I’ve got better more important things to do that play games on this blog with people who choose deliberate ignorance. I’m trying to help you all.. I will repeat this: the Bible WARNS us about the trap of pride.. how destructive it can be. All of you are ignoring this warning.. you’re living proof of how valuable God’s teachings are.. and how powerful the trap of sin (pride in this instance) can be.
“William, I’ve already “walked you down” my logic for why I believe that the God of the Bible is our Creator.. I’m not going to do it again.. you are playing games.. or you are a product of the 60s.. which I’ve asked you if you are but you never answered me.. it’s one or the other.. mental issues or dishonesty.” – kathy
I wasnt alive in the 60’s and I’ve never done drugs. I can only assure you that I am sincere, so to answer your question, if I am wrong, I’m just mistaken, i guess. In full disclosure, i dont think i’m the one coming off as insane or dishonest, but that’s only my perspective.
And again, if you’ve already provided all your evidence, then i guess we have nothing else tio talk about. I found it lacking, if not circular, but certainly not logical. That is why I asked for if you had after. After providing what I thought showed the problems in your argument, I thought maybe I had missed something when you kept saying that you had good evidence.
maybe I’m an idiot, maybe you are, maybe we both are – either way, we have nowhere else to go if neither of us have anything else to show.
and thanks for the warnings on pride. pride can be a destructive vice and one best avoided. I’ll try to remind myself of its perils and continue to strive for the mastery and perfection of myself.
Be well, kathy, and may we all seek the truth.
“Even so, there are other’s who were martyred for their spiritual beliefs and practices without their own violent acts:
– many of the witches who were burned by christians long ago.
– Tibetan monks.
– Native Americans who wouldn’t convert to Catholicism
– sikhs (we have a recent example of this in the USA)
– Muslims (the ones who were actually peaceful)
a little more info on islam and few examples of some of their martyrs who didn’t blow themselves up:
FAMOUS MUSLIM MARTYRS
The first martyr of Islam was a woman named Sumayyah bint Khayyat, who was murdered for her beliefs in Mecca in the early days of Islam. Hamza, a noted warrior of the early community and the uncle of Muhammad, was slain in 625. … The final three of Islam’s Rightly-guided Caliphs, successors to Muhammad, were martyred. Umar, Uthman and Ali were all murdered while serving as caliph. The term caliph means successor, and the first four caliphs were considered successors to the political authority of Muhammad.
Martyred by WHO? What were the circumstances? I want to know how it compares to the martyrs in the Bible. Again, this is about WEIGHING the evidence. Mormons claim that Joseph Smith was “martyred”.. when in reality, he killed people while trying to get away. He was in jail for breaking laws.. nothing peaceful about his “martyrdom”.
None of these examples give specifics.. names etc.
Witches were wrongly killed but what did they die for?? satan? evil? I’m aware of what they claim.. but what evidence supports their claims of their beliefs??
The circumstances and details matter.
You’re right: for new posts, I plan to enforce the guidelines I’m talking about. However, these “Kathy” posts have gone on so long and have covered so much ground, I don’t see a way for me to moderate them. Plus, I’m not reading that much of them now, anyway.
So I figured it made more sense to sort of let these go where they will, but I’d like future discussions to be more on-point and less acerbic.
Thanks for asking for clarification, and I hope this comment helps!
Kathy, I do plan to respond, but it won’t be before late tonight.
That’s fine William.. you can pretend my evidence doesn’t matter; you are in a “corner”.. not many options left, so I understand.. but I’ve proven that the evidence does matter… that the evidence for Christianity FAR outweighs any other religion or scientific explanation.
It’s just like a jury trial William.. evidence exists and honest determinations can be made. No jury member would get away with stating that there is no evidence so I’m not going to give a verdict. But that’s exactly what you are trying to do. I’d love to hear a juror state “santa claus did it!.. no difference in evidence!”
” I found it lacking, if not circular, but certainly not logical.”
Archaeological evidence isn’t “logical”?
Accurate historical documentation isn’t “logical”?
It isn’t “logical” to believe that people who gave their lives peacefully to
testify to the truth of the Bible is valid evidence?
It isn’t “logical” to view fulfilled prophecies as valid evidence?
The ability to discern evidence is also a critical component in finding truth.. along with
honest objectivity. Reason and logic say that all of these things are valid evidence
for the Truth of the Bible. It’s why we have so many Christians today.. and why we
still have martyrs today… TRUE martyrs.
You / atheists lack objectivity and also discernment skills it seems.
“but I’ve proven that the evidence does matter… that the evidence for Christianity FAR outweighs any other religion or scientific explanation.” – kathy
I am sorry, but i just havent seen you do this.
I dont feel like i’m in any corner. I’ve addressed the evidences of yours that I’ve seen – multiple times and have even recited the evidence that i’v seen you mention – i’ve even asked for you to repost the evidence you have in case I missed it – but you havent.
you are welcome to list your evidence, but if you wont, then we dont have anything to discuss. there’s no corner that i see either.
you also said,
“Archaeological evidence isn’t “logical”?” & “Accurate historical documentation isn’t “logical”?” – kathy
sure it is, but this isnt the end of that story. 1) many other religions and secular books have archaeology and history on their side. homer’s Iliad does. Troy’s been found, does that mean that the greek gods are real? 2) and when there’s archaelolgical evidence that is counter to the bible (which there is) – what then?
and you said,
“It isn’t “logical” to believe that people who gave their lives peacefully to
testify to the truth of the Bible is valid evidence?” – kathy
why does peaceful matter?
How is that evidence for anything except their belief in what the truth is? Yes, we agree that they believed it was true – i would hope that no one would willing die for what they thought was a lie, but kathy, martyrs are made of people (and this isnt a charlton heston movie). People make mistakes all the time.
so while a martyr’s steadfastness and devotion could be argued as admirable, it isnt evidence that they were right.
also, i think quotes like this one may indicate that you’re the one with objectivity problems. You appear to be coming from it with the assumption it is just true. but why? why is it true? why did the martyrs believe it was true?
again, simply saying it is true and simply saying that martyrs thought it was true is not the same thing as giving evidence for its truth,
“It isn’t “logical” to view fulfilled prophecies as valid evidence?” kathy
sorry, somehow missed this one.
A fulfilled prophecy would be compelling, but then it goes to how the prophecy was given and how it was “fulfilled.”
I dont know if you saw it on Friday, but i gave an example of a prophecy in which Alabama was going to suffer an earth quake.
No year was given. no timeline. Just that an earthquake would hit. let’s say and earthquake eventually hit alabama 1000 years later. Is that a good prophecy in your mind, or would you toss that up to coincidence?
Now let’s say that a prophecy was given that alabama would suffer an earthquake, and that it would be destroyed, swalled by the sea, and never rebuilt. Then, 750 years later, an earthquake hit alabama. a big one, but not quite big enough to completely destroy alabama, and plus, alabama was soon rebuilt – although some properties were abandoned and Gulf Shores coast line changed some.
this is actually how the biblical prophecies we’ve been shown look to me. The declaration of a looming event that could easily be explained or even expected given a long enough timeline, with many of the details being unfulfilled or “nonliteral” with no real indication of when this should happen…. I just dont find that convincing.
many other religions have similar prophecies and fulfillments…
Now, if someone prophesied that an 7.5 mag earth quake would hit alabama in January of 2025 that would be pretty amazing if that happened. Honestly though, i may even be reluctant to call that a good prophecy, as it may have been the result of good geology, etc – but the more literal details given, the more believable a prophecy gets as being a real prophecy.
are there any like that in the bible?
I’ve seen Nostradamus prophecies that are just as clear and just as fulfilled as those in the bible.
““but I’ve proven that the evidence does matter… that the evidence for Christianity FAR outweighs any other religion or scientific explanation.” – kathy
I am sorry, but i just havent seen you do this. ”
That’s because you don’t WANT to see it. Again, to claim that the evidence for Christianity is the same as for santa claus PROVES this.
“I dont feel like i’m in any corner. I’ve addressed the evidences of yours that I’ve seen – multiple times and have even recited the evidence that i’v seen you mention – i’ve even asked for you to repost the evidence you have in case I missed it – but you havent.”
Where have you addressed the evidence you’ve “seen”.. that you have also repeatedly claimed I haven’t provided.. (very puzzling)..
And I’ve already explained that I won’t repost the detailed evidence that has been posted in the last 2 posts.. not only by me but Mike as well.
For you to claim no evidence has been presented seems like a tactic of desperation.
“sure it is, but this isnt the end of that story. 1) many other religions and secular books have archaeology and history on their side. homer’s Iliad does. Troy’s been found, does that mean that the greek gods are real? 2) and when there’s archaelolgical evidence that is counter to the bible (which there is) – what then?”
William.. here’s a direct question.. meaning I’d ESPECIALLY like an answer.. do you understand what “weighing evidence” means?
I was hoping Mike would help us bring another 17 new members on board, but he and Ms “Compelling Evidence” appear to be conspicuous in their absence.
I’ll kick things off –
Kathy, you’ve continued to maintain that the death of martyrs has been compelling evidence that the Bible is true. I’ve asked which martyrs, under what circumstances did they die, and what historical evidence do you have for this, yet you’ve not given me squat, which makes me wonder why YOU believe the Bible is true, because it clearly wasn’t the martyrs, since you seem to have no evidence for them.
Let me do part of your job for you – Peter was said to have been martyred in CE 64. Please show me evidence of his martyrdom, other that of Tertullian, writing at the end of the second century (150-199 CE), or Origen, in the early part of the third (200-250 CE), literally a hundred to a hundred and fifty years after the alleged event, who were clearly relying on hearsay information, many generations old.
So I’ll neeed your evidence for the martyrdom of St. Pete, followed by that of the other martyrs that convince you that the Bible is true, including your evidence for their martyrdom.
Still tapping my toe, Kathy —
“That’s because you don’t WANT to see it. Again, to claim that the evidence for Christianity is the same as for santa claus PROVES this.” – kathy
you’re the first one who i saw mention santa. you were talking about christian martyrs and i mention muslim martyrs, and then you said people who claim they’re elves and die for santa arent believable. we dont have to discuss santa, but I thought you were the first to mention him.
“Where have you addressed the evidence you’ve “seen”.. that you have also repeatedly claimed I haven’t provided.. (very puzzling)..:” – kathy
numerous time I’ve address martyrdom, prophecies in the bible, history and archaeology. numerous times I’ve listed these telling you that this is what i’ve seen you provide as “evidence.” what have I missed?
“And I’ve already explained that I won’t repost the detailed evidence that has been posted in the last 2 posts.. not only by me but Mike as well.” – kathy
well that’s your call. I’ve posted my stuff to both of you dozens of times and on one occasion, after mentioning that to you, you asked that i repost it again becuase going back through all the other comments was too much i obliged without complaint.
“William.. here’s a direct question.. meaning I’d ESPECIALLY like an answer.. do you understand what “weighing evidence” means?” – kathy
yes, i believe i do. Do you?
I apologise if I appear to be repeating myself and /or have missed this evidence you claim you have addressed.
The previous post was huge and to wade through all those comments is just too much for me.
So, just for my benefit.
Will you PLEASE either: provide details of the evidence you claim proves your religion or: provide a link/s that do.
“but I’m also fully convinced that you all lack objectivity when debating this question” – objectivity, for you it would seem, Kathy, consists only of those opinions that agree with yours.
“I can’t repeat myself over and over..” – how often have you repeated yourself providing me with the names of Christian martyrs, their martyrdom circumstances, and the evidence for your conclusions? See, by definition, repetition involves saying something more than once, and I can’t even get a first time out of you.
Yeah, but I got that fixed, Kathy, just so I could hurry back to you – is that why you haven’t gotten back to me with that martyr list – “technical” difficulties“?
“It isn’t “logical” to believe that people who gave their lives peacefully to testify to the truth of the Bible is valid evidence?” – which ones would those be, Kathy? I’d ESPECIALLY like an answer..
Don’t you think you should first learn what “evidence” means, before advancing to anything more advanced like “weighing evidence“? So far, your idea of evidence has been sorely lacking.
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