video : a college student arguing with me about religion and truth


Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrPin on Pinterest

93 replies :

  1. What the hell are these kids being taught? For f**k sake, she’s in college and is supposed to be one of the bright ones! Even the average and dumb should know this stuff by the time they leave high school. This is the second person (also her age) that I’ve seen use EXACTLY the same argument to counter 1+1 can’t = 3. It’s almost like they are being taught this crap. If so, we need to find out who or what is behind this and stop them from disseminating this tripe. Otherwise, this kind of irrational, illogical, feeling based thinking is going to get us ALL in allot of trouble. It’s the main ingredient in the recipe for gullibility. We spent almost 200k years escaping this shit, we can’t go back to it.

  2. I agree with her point about the tree in the forest, but that’s a philosophical argument. Otherwise, again, not really understanding the meanings of the words truth, proof or evidence…

  3. some things can be true or false based off of perception. but what she is saying is there are no universal facts. that is incorrect and this notch is retarded

  4. liked on

    At least she starting to think. I take that back. I should have watched more first. She started off making me think she was much more open minded than she actually is.

  5. Fascinating! Rational sceptics often (and rightly) criticise the religious for claiming to know things that they cannot possibly know. This lass goes to the opposite extreme and claims that no one can really know anything – or at least nothing that applies to anyone other than themselves. I have come across this logical and philosophical fallacy before and it is maddening and makes genuine communication between people very difficult – as the end of this interview showed. She did at least have the good mannes to be respectful towards the beliefs of other people (and other religions – unlike a great many Theists) but good manners should not extend to allowing ludicrous claims to go unchallenged or according them the status of “truth” merely because some people believe them.

    A practical definition of “truth” is: “the extent to which a statement or claim or assertion comforms with reality”. There may be no “absolute truths” (a philosophical concept) but for practical purposes most statements or beliefs about factual, material or scientific questions (as opposed to moral or immaterial issues) are either true or not. There may be some grey areas and some things may be partially true so we might argue about them, but the simpler the assertion the easier it should be to define whether it is a “true-or-false – yes-or-no” choice.

    The question of a Theistic god existing or not is a “true-or-false” question – if the correct answer is “true” (which would only be reasonable if there was sufficient evidence) then the question of which of the thousands of gods people have claimed to exist would be harder to define (maybe it would be a god no one had ever worhsipped before). In reality the only honest answer to that question would be “don’t know” beause there is no evidence for a god but we cannot prove non-existence either (although many of us would add the rider that the proposition is so unlikely and implausible that we feel safe and secure in acting as if the answer is “no”).

    To communicate effectively above a most basis level we have to have common definitions of words and concepts and this woman’s outright denial of this necessary condition renders it virtually impossible to discuss anything of any depth or substance with her.

  6. i have a friend like this, talking to him is also aggravating as hell. he believes that ppl aren’t really allergic to things, that it’s learned behavior, that ppl have observed supposed allergic reactions in others & subconsciously choose to react allergically. idiotic i know. he says reality only exists bc that’s what we believe, like we are only limited by what we believe our limitations are. i asked him if he ever studied the biology of physical allergic reactions & ofcourse he hadn’t. i think it’s foolish to come to a conclusion before considering all the info available. i then asked him why babies have allergic reactions. he paused for a second & then insisted that that baby must’ve seen someone have an allergic reaction & is copying them. yeah, maddening. needless to say, we don’t stay in touch often.
    oh & btw, ofcourse the damn tree makes a sound.

    1. Honestly, the whole question with the tree is not a philosophical question. It’s a question of language. You could restate it more simply as “What is the definition of the word ‘sound’. “

  7. On a time scale, 99.99998% of the existence of the Universe, there was no “word of God” from the God of Abraham. Current God of popularity?.. or a creator who severely procrastinates in getting the word out? (yes, that percentage is an actual calculation, it’s that absurd).

  8. Another theist idiot. If a 500 foot Redwood falls in the forest some biological creature is going to register it. And 1+1 will never equal 2……only in an Orwellian or theist world. Insanity and why the human race will destroy each other.

  9. So if she came home from work and caught her boyfriend red handed cheating on her, but he said that in his truth and by his definition he did NOT cheat on her would she accept this?
    I don’t think so. Truth is NOT subjective. As people we can choose not to believe in the truth, but it does not change reality. Sorry.

  10. Well my good man, I do declare the wench speaketh shit, T`was gushing forth from the hole in her face twixt her chin & her upper lip.After my head started hurting i bade her farewell,

  11. Wow. She is scary when it comes to her ideas of “truth.” And it’s true that she is WRONG. Just to think that people like this vote makes me shudder. I wonder if one day her brain will click in and she’ll be mortified with herself.

  12. Why not ask this guy for his definition of God? Concede that 1+1=2 because we all understand the definition of 1 and 2, but he is equating the universal knowledge of concrete ideas with an idea that almost no one knows how to define.

  13. The comment about the tree falling in the forest not making any sound is correct depending on how you define sound. The problem is that sound and colours doesn’t exist without an ear and a brain to interpret it. If you define sound as vibrations of particles, then there is always sound even when it is completely quiet to our ears. Human beings can only hear and see a small portion of frequencies. An easy way to think of it is if you have 10 dog whistle blowing with high amplitude (volume) in a perfectly sound proof room. A human would say its quiet but a dog (if could talk) would say it’s really loud. I felt she was going into philosophy and quantum physics. But she does have a point to some extent.

    Science is an approximation of the truth. The reason most of us tend to believe in science is because it actually works. It works better than when we use to believe in everyone’s truth. By everyone’s truth I’m talking about things that people believes in that are untrue for others, but manifest themselves as though they were true to those individuals. Like placebo effect, phantom pregnancies, etc… If someone is cured from an illness by taking in sugar pills and believing that they are actual medicine. Did the sugar pill act as medicine or was it the person’s belief that cured them? Had you told them it was just sugar to begin with they would still be sick. Is it true to say that sugar pills can cure diseases? In some cases (placebo effect) it seems to cure people in others it doesn’t. So how do you find objective truth in such things? So even though science isn’t the complete truth of nature, it is the best thing we have at the moment. The reason why religion and concept of the Christian god fails is because they try to explain the nature of existence in a way that makes less sense than what science has come up with and provide zero evidence for any of their claims.

    Truth is also relative to each person’s knowledge and experience. A simple example is that most people believe that gravity is a force that pulls people towards the Earth. However, some physicist’s would say that gravity is actually curved space pushing you down as it tries to go back to it’s original form. 1 + 1 is 2 in the macro world but in quantum physics it’s not that simple. In that sense our perception of truth is subjective. But there are objective truth like if you decapitate someone from the neck they tend to die.

  14. I can’t stand people who believe in this way.

    Her: Truth is subjective. Everyone decides what is true for themselves.
    Me: Then I have decided that you are wrong.
    Her: To you I am wrong, but to me, I am right.
    Me: No. I have decided that you are wrong even to yourself.
    Her: I don’t agree with that.
    Me: So, either you don’t agree, in which case you prove objectivity by objecting to my claim, or you do agree, in which case you are admitting to being wrong about truth being subjective.
    Her: *heads to gender studies class

  15. Breh, this is horrible. You should always hear them out, and never talk over your interlocutor, even if they are saying crazy things like this lady did.

    And I’d love to see you leave long 5 second spaced before you reply to them. Let them reflect and process what they said. It might be more effective.

  16. The truth remains the truth, no matter who believes it. Even if just one person knows the truth and everybody else believes a lie, the one person is still correct.

  17. We want to think about God. God is a thought, God is an idea, but its reference is to something that transcends all thinking. I mean, he’s beyond being, beyond the category of being or nonbeing. Is he or is he not? Neither is nor is not.

    Every god, every mythology, every religion, is true in this sense: it is true as metaphorical of the human and cosmic mystery.

    (Joseph Campbell)

  18. It sounds to me like she is on the cusp of realizing, or accepting the fact that all religions are fiction. She just can’t quite bring herself to admit it yet. Her arguments are weak and desperate, and she knows it.

  19. This girl is profoundly confused: the truth is NOT subjective; it is OBJECTIVE. Poor thing. I hate it when people say something like, “Well, what might be true for you might not be true for me.” The truth isn’t determined by a democratic vote!

  20. It seems the young lady has met many ppl of different persuasions and that has helped persuade her there is no objective reality; all there is for her is perception. I do think Marcel could have argued more carefully and a whole lot better: the key is to define and defend the notion of objective reality. Take her point about sound. If sound is merely what we perceive, then she’s right about the falling tree, of course. The point is, though, science has demonstrated the objective existence of sound waves by their effects that do not depend on perception. (That’s why we use instruments in science…. ) One of those effects is the perception we call sound. So now Marcel (and most of us) defines sound in a manner independent of perception, and thus we acknowledge an objective truth. I think, too, the young lady is smart enough to recognize the cognitive dissonance going on in her head, but hasn’t arrived at any sort of resolution.

  21. You don’t get to use your own definitions. That is not the way language, science, math, or life actually works.

    Officer, you can’t arrest me for smoking a joint in front of you becuase I choose to call it a firey pencil.

    If you can’t show it, you don’t know it.

  22. Your SE is more than questionnable, you tried to push facts, instead of asking how her logic works. You could definitely had done a better job. She was getting more frustrated than anything else

  23. Having Free will is what makes us how we are today. God gave us that. Free will meaning we think freely, we act freely and we can believe in what ever we want. That is why people don’t believe in a “God” because of lack of proof, and lack of facts. Non-believers will constantly question believers about God. This man is one of them. He’s asking teens then asking an actual pastor that will answer all of his questions without hesitation. But according to this man, he doesn’t mind going in a arguement with a minor about god being real. Free will is one part that messed up most non-believers mindset on god being real.

    1. “Free will” is a poor copout. If God knows everything I will do and think before I was even born, how is any of that “free”? Why would God create an atheist? Just to send him to Hell? I didn’t “choose” to be an atheist any more than you could “choose” to not believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

      1. You clearly don’t know what free will really means. He gave us all a choice, not to punish us or forsake us, but that we may choose him because he said in the “Follow me so that you may live in peace with me for eternity.” How is that punishing us? You punish yourself in the end because of the choice you make. Just like how you decided to reply to me was destined to happen just as how you were dedtined to read this as well. Mock him all you want man. Your life isn’t mine. Your choice isn’t mine ethier. And god knew what you would become before he created you, yes. But the devil decides to wrong you off that path and keep you from seeing god’s love for your own self. I see his love and know that God is real threw faith. And hell was once created for only satan. But he is trying to bring everyone as much as he can to join him just like he did to one third of God’s angels. So if you should hate on someone it should be him but he made you hate on who created you and that is why he is most pleases because he is the one who placed a blindfold on you man and he thinks you won’t ever take it off, he laughs at what you can’t see. He is the one who is a monster but you can believe again what you want. Free will was given to us all and I was the one to remove the blindfold and walk under who i trust and believe in.

        1. You are avoiding the questions. Again, how can you ” freely choose” that which you haven’t been convinced is real? Answer that. Did you freely choose to not believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster? If there’s no argument that would convince you it’s real, then you are INCAPABLE of choosing the FSM. No free will.

          1. I believe and know he is real due to dreams and visions “HE” allowed me to see. You on the other hand can not see that because you lack “FAITH” and are ignorant to believe in something you can not see. A blind person wont know what’s infront of them even if it’s held right in there face. Life as you know it is in your face. You can call it however you like and believe in whatever you want.

            That’s all the proof you can ever get is life itself. We all live it because he created us to endure whatever tried to stop us from reaching paradise with a loving father who created us all.

            1. Visions and dreams? Following hallucinations is no way to go through life my friend. “Faith” is the purposeful suspension of critical thinking, and is a bad thing. It is why you can’t answer my questions and why you “believe” in an unproven God.

              1. Hallucination is a illness I don’t have so sorry to bust your bubbles. Also, I actually answered the questions you asked. What you’re simply asking for (same question you constantly ask) is proof that God is real. You can’t prove it without evidence right? Evidence I have received for myself by God is all the proof I need because I believed in it. And you on the other hand would even reject what would be in front of you and would try to make up another excuse on wether it being fake. It wouldn’t be no end. (For example, if jesus would fall from the heavens and revealed himself, they would just assume that he is an alien. Plus faith is all in believing, all he wants is that but how could he get that if he just made himself known to the whole world by doing that? That would just go against all what he was asking for.) All im gonna tell you is no matter what i tell you, you are ignorant and won’t listen to me. But keep in mind of this, when i become a pastor (A calling god has put over my life) hopefully you will see one of my sermons and by then I will have more wisdom and knowledge to prove what people think can’t be proven. Now im ending this discussion only to say to you that no matter what, god still loves you, and even if you’re blind by love you can’t see, it will always be inside you wether or not you can’t feel. Later and godbless.

                1. Hallucinations are visions and dreams we think are real, and if “Jesus were to fall from the heavens” I would be first in line at your church the next day (or whatever religion/denomination/branch/pastor he said was correct) because THAT would be valid evidence. Hearsay is not evidence. Neither are “personal experiences” nor self-proclaimed holy books. Arguments from ignorance (like saying “we don’t know how life began, therefore God did it.”) are not evidence either. Valid evidence must be repeatable, falsifiable and demonstrable. It must withstand scientific scrutiny and not fail. I’m sorry my friend, you appear to have devoted your life to something you honestly WISH were true. Good luck and may reason grace you.

  24. Truth is in fact subjective. EVERYTHING in fact is subjective in the sense that the foundations of OBJECTIVITY are based upon the beliefs of those who agree with the foundations of the argument. A rock being hard is objective based upon our belief that the definition of the word hard matches the properties of rocks. But the definition of hard simply communicates a sensual experience that some may not share. The VAST majority of us completely agree that rocks are hard for the exact same reason. But there are those who can honestly disagree with the definition of the word hard, hence disagree with the “truth” of the statement.. “Rocks are hard”.

    I agree with your agenda but I think a savvy debater can refute many of the examples you use and then come across or walk away feeling like their ability to refute your examples equates to a validation of their argument. My rule of thumb is to use the opponents argument against them. If you asked her what other things she believed in whole-heartedly you would be able to juxt apose that thing with her belief in god and show how she has differing levels of proof-burdens for different things…which speaks to a slight hypocrisy and a major consistency flaw in her analytical ability. At the end of the day most people are mentally lazy and analytically incapable of truly rational/logical thought. But admittedly that’s just my subjective opinion which I believe is founded upon objective truths.

    Good Work and Good Luck I appreciate what you do.

    1. Truth is in fact subjective. EVERYTHING in fact is subjective in the sense that the foundations of OBJECTIVITY are based upon the beliefs of those who agree with the foundations of the argument. A rock being hard is objective based upon our belief that the definition of the word hard matches the properties of rocks. But the definition of hard simply communicates a sensual experience that some may not share. The VAST majority of us completely agree that rocks are hard for the exact same reason. But there are those who can honestly disagree with the definition of the word hard, hence disagree with the “truth” of the statement.. “Rocks are hard”.

      actually rocks are hard is an opinion, much like saying water is wet is an objective opinion. what is indisputable is that rocks are solid and water is a liquid.
      these are fundamental truths that cannot be changed by perception, your argument is flawed.

  25. If you cannot be sure of anything , how can you be sure of that very thing ?
    For me , this is akin to the philosophical drivel of asking what evidence do you have to show that this evidence is indeed evidence for that which you are trying to prove.
    I agree definitions matter, in fact if we don’t , anything in any language , all of our speech would be just random bursts of sound waves.
    To talk about a bear that we saw in the woods , we have to both agree on
    1. meanings that have been assigned to each word we speak
    2. the concept of a bear
    3. the concept of sight
    4. the concept of agreeing and disagreeing
    5. the concept of knowing that agreeing and disagreeing are both possibilities
    6. the concept of comprehension
    7. concept of using our senses
    8. concept of meaning
    and more..

    Everything that we say we know, has to bear the burden of the same things as that of the “the sight of the bear” discussion.

    Given that, for two people to make sense of anything, they will first have to agree on a way to define it. If we don’t , how do we know that both of us are talking about the same thing. What sense would the word “same” have in that context?

    It is more like how we explain color to blind person , as the definition of the word “color” is very much constrained to the ability of the eye to receive reflected light. We simply choose a different attribute of the EM wave to explain it.

    No this isn’t Argumentum ad populum rather , one of the basic requirements of communication. In other words ,the partakers in any act of communication are to be cognizant of the medium.

    Assuming that we choose not to communicate verbal or otherwise, how would you explain the action of mirror neurons?

    Since we are not in a sensory deprivation chamber , we all operate on the same assumptions about things, that we can all observe things via our senses, that we can all remember things , that to have things to remember , we need sensory inputs and that we all have no other source of information other than what our senses bring in , both aided and unaided.

    I am excluding imagination , as it is part of the learning process and we need our senses to learn the very first input.

    All of these , of course to varying degrees of certainty.

    My two cents!!!

  26. It’s that whole question; “If a tree falls in the forest and no one’s there to hear it, does it make a sound?”

    Of course it makes a sound.

    Actually, not necessarily.

    No,No,No the tree still makes the sound you are just not there to hear it.

  27. The simple fact that cause everyone has their own interpretation of god and believe in one of the 1000’s of gods make it extremely difficult for me to submit myself to bullshit, sorry

      1. put all the religious people in one basket and were able to interpret everyones version of god there would be 1000’s. major or not, if there were one true god then certainly we would all worship that one god no?

        1. Not necessarily. God can be true and also be misinterpreted. If we look at the major Gods we can determine some aren’t real due to their claims. Jehovah and Allah claimed to have written holy book but they contain inconsistencies and contradictions. We can determine these Gods are false. Then we have the Father and Brahman who don’t have logical inconsistencies. Maybe they are both the same God.

          1. I don’t know and I don’t really care, I only believe in reality, logic, and reason, I can’t be bothered with all the spiritual dogma. You know, I hear a lot of people say that god didn’t want to create robots so he gave us free will…. In a god situation described by most (not all) religious people the only way it could work would be that we could only be robots. Free Will and Punishment for using it is what troubles me.

  28. It was hilarious how she painted herself into a dishonest corner to defend her religion, but you failed to convince her of her dishonest position and allowed her to assert without evidence that the universe is subjective merely to justify her belief in a religion which is based on the claim of possessing a monopoly on objective truth, a monopoly used to kill billions of people throughout history and to brainwash its followers such as her. The ironies never cease with religion.

  29. the conflation of belief, truth, knowledge, definitions, etc … in this conversation is painful to listen to … people need to learn how to think before trying to have such discussions.

  30. I LOVE that example that ‘if every human died, would nothing be true?’ Awesome question! I would love to know where her way of thinking came from? It’s amazing she thinks that someone can be correct if they believe the universe is not real because that is what they perceive. And at the same time, someone can be right if they perceive the universe is real. Amazing.

  31. There are so many things he could have said. Like if definitions like truth vary from person to person to person doesn’t that make things difficult to communicate? Doesn’t seem unreliable if the truth can vary in 7 billion different ways? Shouldn’t we want or seek something more consistent? Can we seek for something more consistent, something more reliable?

  32. He logic is flawed!
    With bad facts you can make a mistake and believe that something is true but you will still be wrong even if you and 10 million people believe it’s true.

  33. If a tree falls and no-one is around: Yes, it does produce the sound wave. No, it doesn’t get perceived by anyone. True claims exist for both cases. We can make truth claims about both different definitions of the “sound”.

    Definitions are just agreed between people to talk about ideas. This college student knows the difference between her definition of truth and the general definition of truth. She would have been able to grasp your idea to answer the question. Nearly everyone she has talked to has used the word truth by your definition. Practically she just avoided the question by pretending it’s something else.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.