Reality exists. You don't need to prove it. It is self-evident. And those that will not accept that as fact are lost. The non-existence of god is just one small step away. If you can understand the implications of the law of identity, you will not need additional proof to be certain.
Omniscience is not possible or necessary for certain knowledge. Just because there is more to learn, doesn't make it possible to find impossible things. Nothing will ever demonstrate that the fundamentals of learning and demonstration are wrong. 2+2=4. Always. No new information will change this.
James Yount, you jest.
Otherwise with a brain like that you belong in the other camp.
No, I'm a pretty firm agnostic. My point was there is no proof either way, so why would anyone pretend they know all the answers? Being open to possibilities is what separates a thoughtful person from those with a superiority complex. Personally, I think it's better to live your life trying to make humanity better without the delusion that there is an all controlling god, but it's a problem when you present yourself as the authority on truth when talking with others. That makes us all look bad.
Yes there is - it called logic.
James, I am not sure who you are asking. However theists believe. Believers aver and affirm. Atheist deny and negate. Opposites. The former is making a claim without foundation. The latter is answering the claim with a resounding no.
That's fine Glen. I spend a lot of time refuting the claims of my more religious friends. But I've found that my side is more convincing when it takes these things on a claim by claim basis rather than making sweeping generalizations that alienates the one I'm talking to. I can't prove that there is no god figure floating around there somewhere, so I don't even try. I can express the merits of living out your life without believing in casper though. And I can even, do to my background, effectively explain to my Christian friends why I think the Bible's claim's are illogical. However, as in any debate, when one side makes an absolute claim without anything to back it up with, the conversation ends without resulting in any growth or understanding.
James, you do not have to prove it does not exist-just like burden of proof in a civil or criminal case. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. If you made a preposterous claim to your religious friends about the monsters and goblins in Timbuktu would you have the audacity to tell them they cant refute it. Cuz they'd laugh like hell if you did.
Ah, but what if tens of thousands of people started telling stories of monsters and goblins in Timbuktu. Would they so easily dismiss it? For whatever reason, there exists a yearning in humanity to believe in something greater than us. A large portion of our scientists believe in the probable existence of life beyond our planet, even more advanced intelligence. Is the belief that there is a superior being really such a huge leap? You can easily dismiss the outrageous rantings of a single individual because you can make a fairly good analysis of the likelihood that he is telling the truth and dismiss him without making any significant leap. Frankly, it wouldn't be very hard to send someone to Timbuktu to test his claims. The idea that there is a god is held my the vast majority of humanity. I'm an engineering student, and I wouldn't know how to even begin to quantify the statistical probability of whether or not there is a god. There are simply too many variables and too many limits to our ability to test a hypothesis.
I don't really care either way what people believe. But atheists look bad when they approach an argument with an absolutist attitude. It's counterproductive to the cause.
James, as an engineering student you should very well understand that it is strictly impossible to build a road connecting two fictional cities. Probabilities and variables have nothing to do with it. It doesn't matter if lots of people believe that the two fictional cities really exist (that's an argument from popularity, a logical fallacy). You still can't build that road.
You want atheists to appear to be reasonable by entertaining the "possibility" of the unreasonable. Sorry, but no can do.
You mean an absolutist attitude like 'For sure, you cannot have certain knowledge, because there are many complexities to nature and knowledge is limited."?