Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Atheism Defeated / Hinduism


It was interesting to watch the video "Atheism Defeated" recently. (Please watch the above short video before reading my comments below).


The video shows that atheists are concerned about Presuppositional Apologetics and approaches such as those by Sye Ten Bruggencate (www.proofthatgodexists.org) because they spend so much time arguing against it. At the end of the video he reveals that Hindu gods are his source of revelation. (Although he does not actually believe in any gods as he is a professed atheist and his intention is to parody / mock Christianity.)

However, Hinduism and Christianity are poles apart. Hindus believe in the Vedas but these do not claim to be the inerrant word of any gods. Hindus also hold that the Bhagavad Gita is a holy book, but as god in Hinduism is not personal it cannot be the revelation of a personal god - so why should we accept it or listen to what it says? Hindus do not believe in certain knowledge or absolute truth, but believe that everything is illusion (maya). As the maker of this video isn't a Hindu there isn't much point going too deep into this - I'm just pointing out that once again an attempt to refute the biblical God falls apart on closer inspection.

For further reading on other religions including Hinduism see my website at the following link: http://www.godorabsurdity.com/other-religions.html.

49 comments:

  1. I am the creator of this video and I can say without any hesitation that you couldn't be more wrong about it. It is not an attempt to refute the biblical God. Nor am I in any way concerned about Presuppositional apologetics. I don't know any atheist who IS concerned about it, for that matter, unless that concern is with why anyone would believe it is still being presented as valid.

    Furthermore, as a Christian you are hardly in a position to speak on what any individual Hindu believes. Just as with Christianity, Hinduism is changing as our understanding of the world around us is enhanced by scientific and societal progress.

    I would love to talk to you one on one and clear up your misconceptions about this video, only I would prefer to have it be public. I host a web show on sundays at 5pm eastern standard time (US) and would be more than happy to set up a discussion with you about not only my video but why I'm anything but "concerned" about Presuppositional apologetics.

    Take care and thanks for watching!

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  2. Thanks Fezzik. I appreciate your comment. As a Christian I'm in a good position to know whether or not other claims are true or false because I know that the Bible is true via certain revelation from God. What is your justification for knowledge? Are you a Hindu?

    I'm not sure if I'm available at that time for a discussion but I'll try to let you know. Keep in touch.

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    1. You can just call me Mathew, I don't know why this is still showing up as "Fezzik." I'll have to change that. As for this:

      "As a Christian I'm in a good position to know whether or not other claims are true or false because I know that the Bible is true via certain revelation from God."

      Why should I believe that to be true? Why should I believe that you can do as you say? I mean the part about knowing that the Bible is true... why should I believe you when you say that?

      "What is your justification for knowledge?"

      What do you mean by that? In this context, what do you mean by knowledge? I'd like to answer honestly, and to do so, I'll need you to clarify what you mean by "knowledge." People have very different concepts of what that term means, after all. I could tell you what I know but be using a different definition than you are, and vice versa.

      I'll be happy to discuss other times to have that conversation. Thanks and take care.

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    2. If Jesus rose from the grave, then we can trust that the Bible is the very Word of God. The Christian faith hinges on an external, objective event in history - the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth.

      - Andy Wrasman

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    3. Thanks for your comments Andy and Matthew, and sorry for the slow response. (Although we've recently discussed these things on Facebook). I agree with Andy that the resurrection is unique and an objective fact that sets Christianity apart, however, this alone is not proof that the Bible is true. The proof that the Bible is true and that God exists is that without him you can't prove anything. The reason for this Matthew is that without God you can't get knowledge (justified true belief) and you can't get truth. What is truth without God? Truth is what is real right? But how do you know what is real? Without God you can't know anything to be real, and therefore can't know anything to be true. In order to justify any knowledge you need to either have revelation from an all-knowing God, or be all knowing yourself, otherwise you could be wrong in what you believe.

      For more on all of this see my website www.godorabsurdity.com

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    4. You seem to be saying that God (X) justifies knowledge and truth, and while I agree that X is necessary if someone makes objective truth claims, I'm not convinced by your claim that it's the god of the bible. I'm not convinced that you receive revelation either. If you don't feel it's necessary to rationally support your claims that's fine, but anyone is justified being skeptical of your claims if your justification is a special pleading logical fallacy.

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    5. Yes, the biblical God is the necessary precondition for knowledge. I know this by revelation from God, and if you reject it you can't know anything. What's your justification for knowledge? If you have no problem with validating your reasoning using your reasoning then you are obviously using the special pleading logical fallacy.

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    6. Brendan this is disappointing. I am still unconvinced of your claims, and I don't see any justification for your claims. You seem to be telling me that I'm not allowed to be skeptical of a claim without seeing any justification for that claim, and that just increases my skepticism.

      We still haven't gotten to my reasoning at all, I'm still trying to figure out these claims I keep hearing that are presented for me to simply accept because you say so? If you say it's actually your particular god that's given me a source for knowledge, simply because you say so, then I am more skeptical than ever.

      Did you justify your claim somewhere that I missed? Specifically, that "the biblical God is the necessary precondition for knowledge." If you've rationally justified that claim anywhere and I just haven't noticed, I'll be more than happy to admit as much.

      I've already admitted also that I agree that anyone who says they have objective knowledge would require either omniscience or revelation from someone or something that is omniscient, at least twice now as I recall. All I've heard from you however is claims to objective knowledge, which means you are therefore either omniscient or have received revelation from someone or something that is, or you are mistaken or being deceptive. So of those four options:

      1) You are omniscient
      2) You have received objective knowledge from someone who is omniscient
      3) You are mistaken
      4) You are being deceptive

      You seem to be claiming #2 is correct, but from what you've said so far, I haven't been convinced that this is in fact the correct option. I'd love to be shown why I'm wrong.

      Now if you admit you are not omniscient, a counter point to your argument would be:

      A) Human beings are fallible
      B) You and I are human beings
      C) You and I are fallible

      Therefore even if you HAVE received objective knowledge from an omniscient entity, you could be mistaken nonetheless due to your own fallibility.

      I await your response to this massive problem in your argument.

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    7. //Brendan this is disappointing. I am still unconvinced of your claims, and I don't see any justification for your claims.//

      Sorry that you are disappointed, but the problem isn't at my end. Proof and persuasion are two different things. The problem is that you don't want to be convinced because you are "suppressing the truth in unrighteousness"

      // You seem to be telling me that I'm not allowed to be skeptical of a claim without seeing any justification for that claim, and that just increases my skepticism.//

      Can you be skeptical of your skepticism? The thing is that you know that God exists, but you don't want to acknowledge God because you prefer your sin. I pray that you would repent and stop denying the God you already know but are suppressing.

      //We still haven't gotten to my reasoning at all, I'm still trying to figure out these claims I keep hearing that are presented for me to simply accept because you say so?//

      It's not my personal revelation. You can check it out for yourself in the Bible.

      // If you say it's actually your particular god that's given me a source for knowledge, simply because you say so, then I am more skeptical than ever.//

      You already know the God of the Bible exists, but you don't want to know him.

      //Did you justify your claim somewhere that I missed? Specifically, that "the biblical God is the necessary precondition for knowledge." If you've rationally justified that claim anywhere and I just haven't noticed, I'll be more than happy to admit as much.//

      Without God you can't know anything because you can't justify any knowledge as you could be wrong about everything. Until you show how you escape using your reasoning to validate your reasoning, without appealing to a god that you don't believe in then your every sentence is confirming that you do know God, because you are making knowledge claims but can't justify them.

      //I've already admitted also that I agree that anyone who says they have objective knowledge would require either omniscience or revelation from someone or something that is omniscient, at least twice now as I recall. All I've heard from you however is claims to objective knowledge, which means you are therefore either omniscient or have received revelation from someone or something that is, or you are mistaken or being deceptive. So of those four options:

      1) You are omniscient
      2) You have received objective knowledge from someone who is omniscient
      3) You are mistaken
      4) You are being deceptive

      You seem to be claiming #2 is correct, but from what you've said so far, I haven't been convinced that this is in fact the correct option. I'd love to be shown why I'm wrong.//

      Yes, number 2 is correct, and if you deny it your worldview is reduced to absurdity.

      //Now if you admit you are not omniscient, a counter point to your argument would be:

      A) Human beings are fallible
      B) You and I are human beings
      C) You and I are fallible

      Therefore even if you HAVE received objective knowledge from an omniscient entity, you could be mistaken nonetheless due to your own fallibility. I await your response to this massive problem in your argument.//

      No problem at all here - God has revealed some things to us such that we can know them for certain. So I could not be wrong about God's existence for example. And this revelation is not dependent on my fallible reasoning - God has revealed it innately, through creation, and through his Word.

      The massive problem you have is that you've not been able to justify the validity of your reasoning. So until you do so every sentence you write presupposes the truth of my worldview.

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    8. “Sorry that you are disappointed, but the problem isn't at my end. Proof and persuasion are two different things. The problem is that you don't want to be convinced because you are "suppressing the truth in unrighteousness" “

      Are you saying that when you just state your opinion, that counts as proof of the validity of that opinion? Are you the God that you believe in, or are you a fallible human being?

      “Can you be skeptical of your skepticism? The thing is that you know that God exists, but you don't want to acknowledge God because you prefer your sin. I pray that you would repent and stop denying the God you already know but are suppressing.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “It's not my personal revelation. You can check it out for yourself in the Bible.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “You already know the God of the Bible exists, but you don't want to know him.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “Without God you can't know anything because you can't justify any knowledge as you could be wrong about everything. Until you show how you escape using your reasoning to validate your reasoning, without appealing to a god that you don't believe in then your every sentence is confirming that you do know God, because you are making knowledge claims but can't justify them.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “Yes, number 2 is correct, and if you deny it your worldview is reduced to absurdity.”

      Number 2 is correct because you say so? Considering the poor quality of the arguments I've heard from you so far, I don't see why anyone could accept anything other than #3 or #4.

      “No problem at all here - God has revealed some things to us such that we can know them for certain. So I could not be wrong about God's existence for example. And this revelation is not dependent on my fallible reasoning - God has revealed it innately, through creation, and through his Word.”

      More unjustified claims. NOT proof, an opinion.

      “The massive problem you have is that you've not been able to justify the validity of your reasoning. So until you do so every sentence you write presupposes the truth of my worldview.”

      I suppose that's how you presuppositional apologists are able to tell yourselves that no one has beaten your “arguments,” because I've thoroughly and completely destroyed it, rationally speaking. Until you realize that your claims are just that, claims, you and the other guys (Sye included) will continue to not be taken seriously. When you actually defend your claims rather than simply asserting that they're true “just because you say so” then I'll address your response, otherwise I'll consider my refutation a complete success.

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    9. How do you know your reasoning is valid? You've not answered that question because you know you can't. How do you know anything to be true in your worldview? Again, you've not answered that because you know you can't. If God was proven to you to your satisfaction would you worship Him? I'm noticing a pattern here of me asking questions and you not answering them. What I've said isn't true because I've said so, but because you can't get truth without God, and I think anyone who takes the time to read your responses and how you've ducked and dived to avoid the real issues will see through your hollow claim of success.

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    10. At the beginning I also asked you "What is your justification for knowledge?" You've totally avoided that question too. The reason is because your own mind is your justification for knowledge - but you don't know if anything you believe is true or not because you can't validate your reasoning - so your tactic is to avoid questions, and try to ask me questions, then ignore my answers. If God did not exist you couldn't even make sense of your questions, because you wouldn't be able to know what truth or reality is.

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    11. "I'm noticing a pattern here of me asking questions and you not answering them."

      I find it very interesting that whenever the massive holes in your assertions are pointed out, you go back to the script. I asked you for clarification of the first question you asked me. That is not ducking anything, and claiming it is a dodge is just a way to distract from your own repeated dodges. The fact remains that I responded honestly to your question, asked one of my own, and you have still not answered it after three weeks. Any subsequent questions you have asked are irrelevant if you are unable to answer that first question, that's why I keep repeating it.

      Now you responded that knowledge is justified true belief, then commenced to ask more questions without answering mine. That is not conducive to a productive discussion and it is out of generosity that I've humored you for this long. If you are not able to answer the question that I asked you in good faith over three weeks ago, which I will restate here for clarity's sake:

      ________

      As for this:

      "As a Christian I'm in a good position to know whether or not other claims are true or false because I know that the Bible is true via certain revelation from God."

      Why should I believe that to be true? Why should I believe that you can do as you say? I mean the part about knowing that the Bible is true... why should I believe you when you say that?

      ________


      You have not answered it, and all of my responses have been a way to clarify it for you in such a way that you would. If you can't, or won't, then you are interested in preaching, not having a discussion, not showing me why what you say is actually true, and unjustified assertions are a dime a dozen. I've made NO unjustified assertions throughout, and have not engaged in your script, and will not do so until you are able to answer this simple question.

      Further to that, I've also granted that for someone to justify objective knowledge about reality external to the mind, an external source must be responsible. So we agree on that. I am not claiming anything about this external source, YOU ARE. You carry the burden of proof and I will not be so foolish as to allow you to shift it.

      The only tactic I am using here is expecting you to actually answer the question asked of you, after I'd answered yours in good faith. You are breaching a great many rules of etiquette in this discussion even though I'm trying to maintain them, and if you continue doing so, I'll have no course of action but to accept this as an attempt to escape the uncomfortable position you are in. I am in no such position, and my arguments are wholly supported by rationality with regards to every point I've made so far.

      I would also be happy to discuss the nature of this external source of objective knowledge but for you to claim you KNOW what it is, and furthermore that I also know what it is, that is what you have not justified. It's that simple.

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    12. I've answered all of your questions and given proof that God exists, but you don't accept that proof. Proof and persuasion are two different things. In your lengthy response you've still not answered my questions, so I'll ask them again - How do you know your reasoning is valid? What is truth? How do you get truth without God? How do you know what reality is without God? If I proved to you to your satisfaction that God existed would you worship God? This isn't a script - it's asking you questions that you can't answer and that expose the fact that you do already know that God exists. This is your last chance to at least make an attempt to answer my questions. If you will not answer them, as moderator of my blog I'll have to delete any further comments that do not attempt to answer my questions, as it's getting rather ridiculous the lengths you are going to in your attempts to suppress the truth about the God you do know, but are in denial about.

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    13. I'd also like to point out that it's nonsense to claim I've breached any 'rules of etiquette'. A, I haven't, and B, how do you get any objective moral rules without God? If we are just stardust as atheists claim, why should it matter what one bit of stardust does to another bit of stardust. I've tried very hard to give clear and concise answers to all of your questions, and to have you claim I've been uncivil is just plainly absurd.

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    14. Please show me where you answered that question? I don't see it anywhere. I'll be happy to answer your questions if you'll answer mine as well.

      I most certainly can answer your questions, by the way, and it is also a script that we hear quite often, even though those questions are often asked in such a way that I'm reminded of "When did you stop beating your wife?" As in phrased in such a way that they cannot be properly answered by anyone. That being said, if you can show me where you've given me an answer for why I should believe your claims about the nature of the necessary source for objective knowledge, we can continue this discussion.

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    15. I've answered your question here, straight after you asked it, but you don't accept it (proof and persuasion are two different things). So I'll post it again below, and if you refuse to accept it and will not attempt to answer my questions then as I mentioned above I reserve the right to delete your comment if you continue to avoid my questions. The reason you find the questions I ask difficult to answer is because of your denial of God. If you accepted God you'd find the answers easy to answer. Here is what I wrote:

      "Surfer BrendanFebruary 24, 2014 at 4:43 AM

      Thanks for your comments Andy and Matthew... The proof that the Bible is true and that God exists is that without him you can't prove anything. The reason for this Matthew is that without God you can't get knowledge (justified true belief) and you can't get truth. What is truth without God? Truth is what is real right? But how do you know what is real? Without God you can't know anything to be real, and therefore can't know anything to be true. In order to justify any knowledge you need to either have revelation from an all-knowing God, or be all knowing yourself, otherwise you could be wrong in what you believe.

      For more on all of this see my website www.godorabsurdity.com "

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    16. I don't find your questions at all difficult, I don't know what gave you that idea.

      I ask you for why I should believe your claim, and you haven't answered that question at all. Remember, I admit that an external source for an objective knowledge claim is required, but you are asserting the nature of that source without answering my question of why I should accept your assertion. That's the same question I've been asking you for three weeks and no, you still haven't answered it.

      If I were a student and you the teacher, and I were taking a test that you were giving in class, and one of the questions on the test (which was written by the teacher) was something I missed, my first recourse would be to ask the teacher why I missed the answer. Rather than answering why I missed the answer, the teacher only gives the correct answer as defined by the test he himself wrote. That answers the WHAT but not the WHY. My question is the WHY, and no you most certainly have not answered it. If you continue to assert that you have answered it when I've clearly shown how you have not, then I'll have no alternative but to assume you can't or won't do so, and my skepticism of your claims will thus be justified until I can find someone who uses this particular apologetic who can or will answer it.

      I hope you don't take this as a dodge because I couldn't be more sincere about wanting to continue this dialogue, however you are the one who is holding it up by not answering a very simple and straightforward question.

      Now in good faith, I'll go back to the question you clarified at the beginning BEFORE I asked you my own question (which you still haven't answered.)

      "What is your justification for knowledge?"

      That was the only question you asked me before my own question, so that is the only one you are therefore justified in expecting me to answer (until you answer mine.)

      My justification for knowledge about external reality is through the revelation of an external source or sources of verification, with the degree of knowledge being dependent on their correspondence to each other. Since it is by revelation from these multiple sources, I have no choice but to accept them, based of course on the extent of the corroborative external verification.

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    17. Thank you for finally attempting to answer 1 of my questions. (Although it made no sense at all, and you falsely accused me of not answering your question). Until you attempt to answer the rest of my questions I will go no further and reserve the right to delete any comments that do not answer them. I will repeat the questions below:

      How do you know your reasoning is valid? What is truth? How do you get truth without God? How do you know what reality is without God? If I proved to you to your satisfaction that God existed would you worship God?

      I'll also ask you a follow up question - how do you know that your justification for knowledge is valid? When you justify your knowledge do you use your internal reasoning to interpret things? If so, how do you know that your reasoning is valid?

      All of these questions are very important because if you cannot give satisfactory answers to them then you can't know anything to be true - which is related to the proof that God exists which I've given to you already.

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    18. Brendan, the approach I've taken with you can be clearly outlined here, if you're confused why I haven't simply allowed you to get away with avoiding answering questions, then pretending like someone else is being unreasonable. I made it very clear early in our discussion that I had one question which you simply refused to answer, then pretended that you did. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mssq45r-6Jk

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    19. You are welcome to make a video. The publicity will do more to get the word out there. I had a look at the video above and it's more of the same - you should title the video 'How to hide from God and how to avoid answering honest questions.' That seems to be an increasingly common tactic these days. (And then for bonus points claim that the Christian is not answering your questions even when they've already answered them).

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  3. And for bonus bonus points claim that you've won the debate (as you did in a previous comment which I deleted). The thing is though that to win presupposes an ultimate standard of truth in order to know you've got the truth, and you can't know that in your worldview because you're denying the ultimate source of truth - Jesus Christ who is the Truth, and in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

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    1. Original question (still unanswered):

      Why should I believe that to be true? Why should I believe that you can do as you say? I mean the part about knowing that the Bible is true... why should I believe you when you say that?

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    2. I've already answered that. I said before and will say it again, the proof that God exists is that without him you can't prove anything. The Bible is true because if it weren't nothing could be true. How do you get truth without God? You can't know even 1 thing to be true. If you think you can - then tell me what is 1 thing you know for sure is true, and how do you know it? What is truth? Truth is what conforms to reality, but how do you know what is real? Einstein said that the true nature of the universe we shall never know, and he was right in terms of not being able to know reality if we reject God.

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    3. Brendan I'm going to give you the benefit of a doubt that you just don't understand the question. I'll rephrase. The source of knowledge that we both agree MUST exist which provides revelation of truth about reality external to our minds... you claim it's the god of the bible. You are merely asserting the identity of this source without providing any justification whatsoever. So no, you are not answering the question. Why should I, or anyone, believe you? If you'll simply answer the question I'll be happy to answer anything you want to ask. Just provide an answer for why I should believe your claim about the identity of the source of knowledge.

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    4. //Brendan I'm going to give you the benefit of a doubt that you just don't understand the question. I'll rephrase.//

      I've answered your question again and again, but you don't accept my answer. Proof and persuasion are not the same thing.

      // The source of knowledge that we both agree MUST exist which provides revelation of truth about reality external to our minds... you claim it's the god of the bible.//

      I'm not claiming it's the God of the Bible - I know it's the God of the Bible - and so do you but you're suppressing the truth, as has been very clear by your evasive tactics to try and avoid answering my questions.

      // You are merely asserting the identity of this source without providing any justification whatsoever.//

      How do you know that? You've not provided any logical way for you to know anything in your worldview. I've provided clear justification for what I know is true - revelation from God - but you hate God and are not only apathetic towards God but actively hostile in your opposition to him, as evidenced by your concerted efforts here and on YouTube to speak against God. The fact that you spend so much time trying to refute God is because you know God exists but don't want it to be true.

      // So no, you are not answering the question. Why should I, or anyone, believe you?//

      How would you know if I had answered the question given the fact that you can't justify any knowledge or any truth in your worldview? You gave a wordy waffly and meaningless answer earlier to your justification for knowledge that made absolutely no sense at all, and that you have not explained or even tried to explain how you know it or anything else you've said to be true. People should believe what I say because it's true, and if it weren't true nothing could be true - as has been clear from your avoidance of my questions relating to how you know anything to be true in your worldview.

      // If you'll simply answer the question I'll be happy to answer anything you want to ask. Just provide an answer for why I should believe your claim about the identity of the source of knowledge.//

      What kind of an answer would you accept? It's becoming more and more clear that you would not accept any evidence. But if I did prove conclusively to you that God exists and the Bible is true, would you worship God? I doubt you would as it's clear you hate God, and have devoted much of your life to trying to refute God because you love your sin.

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    5. "I've answered your question again and again, but you don't accept my answer. Proof and persuasion are not the same thing. "

      The justification for why anyone should accept the statement that the deity in the Bible is the only possible source of knowledge, that's all I'm asking you to provide... whether or not I accept that answer is my responsibility, not yours. If you just provide a rational explanation, it's on me to accept it, so persuasion doesn't apply.

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    6. I will be happy to carefully answer each and every point you've made in this entire thread, and I do mean that sincerely, if you'll answer this one question as it is asked. You say revelation, I say again why should I believe the claims you make about the source of objective knowledge concerning external reality being necessarily from the biblical deity? It's not a difficult question and I'm doing my best to think of new ways to phrase it so it's easier to understand.

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    7. I've already answered your questions but you don't accept my answers. We could go on forever like this, but I really do have better things to do with my time than deal with people who are just trolling. I've not only answered your questions here but also in other forums, and you've consistently rejected my answers, and refused to even try to answer nearly all of my questions. How will you know when I've answered your question given the fact that I've already answered it but you've ignored my answer?

      Why the biblical deity? Because there are no other deities.

      Psalm 96:5 “For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the heavens.”

      I'm pretty sure I've already mentioned this before. It's clearly explained in another of my blog posts http://brendantruthseeker.blogspot.co.nz/2013/12/what-about-other-gods-by-sye-ten.html

      If you won't answer my questions and continue wasting my time by using evasion tactics I will have to block you from this blog. Last chance to start answering some of my questions - how do you know anything to be true in your worldview? If I proved to you that God exists to your satisfaction would you worship Him?

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    8. Steele, I will answer it in a different manner.

      You should believe it because it is true.

      Delete
  4. "Hindus believe in the Vedas but these do not claim to be the inerrant word of any gods."

    No. They're just eternal and put into written form by Vyasadeva, an incarnation of the Supreme Lord Vishnu. No big deal.

    "Hindus also hold that the Bhagavad Gita is a holy book, but as god in Hinduism is not personal it cannot be the revelation of a personal god - so why should we accept it or listen to what it says?"

    Whoooaah, hold your horses there. First off, there are numerous schools of thought under the "Hindu" nomenclature. While some hold to the idea that God is, more or less, impersonal in the ultimate understanding, there are PLENTY of Vedic followers (ESPECIALLY ones who focus a great deal on Bhagavad-gita) who argue that God is ultimately a Person, and they argue this to a point that would put a Christian's notion of a personal God to shame. Here's the rundown: "Oh, you think God is personal and appears with the material form known as Jesus? That's cute. Here's Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose two-armed, bluish/blackish, youthful form is completely spiritual and not material as the Sat-Chit-Ananda Vigraha--eternal, full in knowledge and bliss. He is not merely an incarnation of a larger 'Father' God. Rather, He is THE Supreme Lord and, dwelling on the absolute platform, there is no difference between His self and His bodily form. He enacts various pastimes in His eternal realm and is accompanied by His eternal associates. Etc., etc., etc. So says the Gaudiya Vaisnava. I guess you better start taking this more serious than your own "personal God" tradition, based on your own criteria.

    "Hindus do not believe in certain knowledge or absolute truth, but believe that everything is illusion (maya)."

    Nonsense. Hindus do not hold such views. Everything ISN'T maya, according to Hindus or Veda. There is certain knowledge, and there most definitely is absolute truth.

    Where are you getting your information? Seriously, do you not study these things before you post them?

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    1. "Hindus believe in the Vedas but these do not claim to be the inerrant word of any gods."
      //No. They're just eternal and put into written form by Vyasadeva, an incarnation of the Supreme Lord Vishnu. No big deal.//

      How do you know that? Please provide a quote from the vedas themselves to confirm this. And even if you do confirm this it still cannot be trusted as the innerant word of God, and doesn't claim to be either.

      "Hindus also hold that the Bhagavad Gita is a holy book, but as god in Hinduism is not personal it cannot be the revelation of a personal god - so why should we accept it or listen to what it says?"

      //Whoooaah, hold your horses there. First off, there are numerous schools of thought under the "Hindu" nomenclature.//
      And all of them are merely the opinions of fallible men - so why should anyone accept them?

      // While some hold to the idea that God is, more or less, impersonal in the ultimate understanding, there are PLENTY of Vedic followers (ESPECIALLY ones who focus a great deal on Bhagavad-gita) who argue that God is ultimately a Person, and they argue this to a point that would put a Christian's notion of a personal God to shame.//

      Then they are misrepresenting their religion. Again - show me in the Bhagavad Gita where it says that God is personal and that the Bhagavad Gita is an infallible book.

      // Here's the rundown: "Oh, you think God is personal and appears with the material form known as Jesus? That's cute.//

      Any further posts from you that are condescending like that will not be posted. I don't think that God is personal and revealed in the person of Jesus - I know it by revelation from God through the Bible.

      //Here's Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, whose two-armed, bluish/blackish, youthful form is completely spiritual and not material as the Sat-Chit-Ananda Vigraha--eternal, full in knowledge and bliss. He is not merely an incarnation of a larger 'Father' God. Rather, He is THE Supreme Lord and, dwelling on the absolute platform, there is no difference between His self and His bodily form. He enacts various pastimes in His eternal realm and is accompanied by His eternal associates. Etc., etc., etc. So says the Gaudiya Vaisnava. I guess you better start taking this more serious than your own "personal God" tradition, based on your own criteria.//

      Again - why should I believe you or Gaudiya Vaisnava? How do you know that this is true?

      "Hindus do not believe in certain knowledge or absolute truth, but believe that everything is illusion (maya)."

      //Nonsense. Hindus do not hold such views. Everything ISN'T maya, according to Hindus or Veda. There is certain knowledge, and there most definitely is absolute truth.//

      How do you know that? Where does it say that in the Vedas of Bhagavad Gita?

      //Where are you getting your information? Seriously, do you not study these things before you post them?//

      I've done a fair bit of study on other religions and have a degree in Theology. I've posted a few links on my website under the Hinduism section. Did you take the time to read it? Where are you getting your information and how do you know it is true? Are you a Hindu? What is your religion? Or are you an atheist who just likes to pontificate about things that you can't really know for certain so that you can attack Christianity and mock the God that you are trying to hide from?

      Delete
  5. "How do you know that? Please provide a quote from the vedas themselves to confirm this."

    Here are a few verses:

    Bhagavad-gita chapter 9:

    TEXT 11
    avajananti mam mudha
    manusim tanum asritam
    param bhavam ajananto
    mama bhuta-mahesvaram

    avajananti--deride; mam--Me; mudhah--foolish men; manusim--in human form; tanum--body; asritam--assuming; param--transcendental; bhavam--nature; ajanantah--not knowing; mama--Mine; bhuta--everything that be; maha-isvaram--the supreme proprietor.

    Full translated verse:

    Fools deride Me when I descend in the human form. They do not know My transcendental nature and My supreme dominion over all that be.

    TEXT 17
    pitaham asya jagato
    mata dhata pitamahah
    vedyam pavitram omkara
    rk sama yajur eva ca

    pita--father; aham--I; asya--of this; jagatah--of the universe; mata--mother; dhata--supporter; pitamahah--grandfather; vedyam--what is to be known; pavitram--that which purifies; om-kara--the syllable om; rk--the Rg Veda; sama--the Sama Veda; yajuh--the Yajur Veda; eva--certainly; ca--and.

    Full translated verse:

    I am the father of this universe, the mother, the support, and the grandsire. I am the object of knowledge, the purifier and the syllable om. I am also the Rg, the Sama, and the Yajur [Vedas].

    TEXT 18
    gatir bharta prabhuh saksi
    nivasah saranam suhrt
    prabhavah pralayah sthanam
    nidhanam bijam avyayam

    gatih--goal; bharta--sustainer; prabhuh--Lord; saksi--witness; nivasah--abode; saranam--refuge; su-hrt--most intimate friend; prabhavah--creation; pralayah--dissolution; sthanam--ground; nidhanam--resting place; bijam--seed; avyayam--imperishable.

    Full translated verse:

    I am the goal, the sustainer, the master, the witness, the abode, the refuge and the most dear friend. I am the creation and the annihilation, the basis of everything, the resting place and the eternal seed.

    This is Krishna, the speaker of the Bhagavad-gita.


    "And even if you do confirm this it still cannot be trusted as the innerant word of God"

    I have my doubts that you can be trusted to have intellectually honest discussions given statements like the above.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. "How do you know that? Please provide a quote from the vedas themselves to confirm this."
      //Here are a few verses: Bhagavad-gita chapter 9:
      TEXT 11: Fools deride Me when I descend in the human form. They do not know My transcendental nature and My supreme dominion over all that be.//

      So if you can’t know the transcendental nature of God how can you know anything at all about him? What you were asked to provide was evidence from a Hindu text proving that they even CLAIM to be the innerant Word of God (as the Bible claims).
      //TEXT 17: I am the father of this universe, the mother, the support, and the grandsire. I am the object of knowledge, the purifier and the syllable om. I am also the Rg, the Sama, and the Yajur [Vedas].//

      Still nothing there saying that this god has given us an inspired Word.
      //TEXT 18: I am the goal, the sustainer, the master, the witness, the abode, the refuge and the most dear friend. I am the creation and the annihilation, the basis of everything, the resting place and the eternal seed.//

      Still no claim that they’ve communicated through any scriptures in any innerant infallible kind of way.
      //This is Krishna, the speaker of the Bhagavad-gita.//

      How do we know that it’s Krishna and not just the words of man? (Especially given that the earlier verse said we can’t know this god)
      "And even if you do confirm this it still cannot be trusted as the innerant word of God"
      //I have my doubts that you can be trusted to have intellectually honest discussions given statements like the above.//

      I’m not being intellectually dishonest or lying, but how do you get moral absolutes in your worldview in order to say that lying is absolutely wrong given the fact that your god cannot be known as stated in your own holy text?

      Delete
  6. (Continued...)

    "And all of them are merely the opinions of fallible men - so why should anyone accept them?"

    So you have decided wantonly. But that is beside the point anyway. I mention that there are other schools of thought because you ignorantly classify Hindus as believing certain things that aren't generally true. Once this is pointed out, instead of conceding the point or trying to learn something, you just dismiss it as if we were at that point having a debate over the truth value of any one of those schools of thought. This is you being intellectually dishonest. Whether you believe in the credibility of any of the philosophical schools or not, the fact that they exists defeats your notion that Hindus believe X if it is the case that not-X is a tenet of some school of Vedic or Hindu understanding.

    "Then they are misrepresenting their religion."

    No. You just don't know what you're talking about.

    "Again - show me in the Bhagavad Gita where it says that God is personal"

    Krishna is God, as per the verses I cited above. Krishna is a person. Ergo, God is a person, as per the Bhagavad-gita.

    "and that the Bhagavad Gita is an infallible book."

    It would be completely superfluous for Krishna, after having declared His supreme, transcendental nature, to stop and say, "Oh, by the way, everything I am saying is infallible... in case you didn't know." Also, Bhagavad-gita is part of a larger text, which is, in turn, part of the extensive Vedic library. Does every book of the Bible explicitly state "this is the infallible word of God?" I know for a fact that they don't all state that, thus rendering your implied argument here null.

    "Any further posts from you that are condescending like that will not be posted."

    Well, it's your blog after all. It is just mind-boggling that you present yourself as a learned person on this subject matter, and yet you are so blatantly and demonstrably ignorant about the religions your arguments posture defeat over. It is, after all, easier to set up strawmen and defeat those instead. You didn't happen to have a hand in creating those Jack Chick tracts, did you?

    "I don't think that God is personal and revealed in the person of Jesus - I know it by revelation from God through the Bible."

    That's fine. Replace "Bible" with "Bhagavad-gita" and you'll begin to understand the view of your so-called opposition.

    "Again - why should I believe you or Gaudiya Vaisnava? How do you know that this is true?"

    See above.

    "How do you know that? Where does it say that in the Vedas of Bhagavad Gita?"

    Actually, the onus is on you to show where it says that EVERYTHING is maya. It also makes no sense to say that everything is illusion after explaining at length the absolute nature of the supreme person. At BARE minimum, that supreme person is not maya, according to those texts. Even if everything else is maya, that maya rests on something real. "Illusion" doesn't mean completely false. It refers to accepting one thing as another. A common example or analogy is that of thinking a rope to be a snake. Just because it is not a snake doesn't mean the rope doesn't exist. So for you to characterize the Hindu concept of maya as meaning that they don't accept the possibility of certain knowledge or absolute truth is so amazingly false that I don't know why you even bother having a "Hindu" section on your site.

    "I've done a fair bit of study on other religions"

    Well, you learn more everyday, right?

    "I've posted a few links on my website under the Hinduism section. Did you take the time to read it?"

    Yes.

    "Are you a Hindu?"

    For all intents and purposes. Although, the term "hindu" is a misnomer and not actually found in sastra (scripture.)

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    1. (Continued...)
      "And all of them are merely the opinions of fallible men - so why should anyone accept them?"
      //So you have decided wantonly. //

      Non sequitur. I’ve got no idea how you concluded that. I know by revelation from God that the Bible is true, and by the impossibility of the contrary. And when I examine all other notGod worldviews I find that they are contradictory and self-refuting. In the case of Hinduism you’ve yet to demonstrate any claims from your holy texts that tell us that those texts are the infallible word of Krishna or Brahma or any other god – so why should anyone believe them to be anything more than the fallible writings of men?

      //But that is beside the point anyway. I mention that there are other schools of thought because you ignorantly classify Hindus as believing certain things that aren't generally true.//

      There are other schools of thought because Hinduism is a man-made religion that is not true and because your religious texts are written by men and not the word of God.

      // Once this is pointed out, instead of conceding the point or trying to learn something, you just dismiss it as if we were at that point having a debate over the truth value of any one of those schools of thought.//

      Do you believe in absolute truth? Where does it say in your religion that man can know absolute truth? My understanding is that Hindus cannot know any absolute truths and do not believe in absolute laws of logic – and if they do exist in the hindu worldview they are not able to be known with any certainty.

      //This is you being intellectually dishonest.//

      No. And you can’t account for absolute morality without God so your claim is empty.

      //Whether you believe in the credibility of any of the philosophical schools or not, the fact that they exists defeats your notion that Hindus believe X if it is the case that not-X is a tenet of some school of Vedic or Hindu understanding.//

      Just because a belief exists doesn’t make it true. How do you know anything to be absolutely true in your worldview?
      "Then they are misrepresenting their religion."
      //No. You just don't know what you're talking about.//

      How do you know that?

      Delete
    2. "Again - show me in the Bhagavad Gita where it says that God is personal"
      //Krishna is God, as per the verses I cited above. Krishna is a person. Ergo, God is a person, as per the Bhagavad-gita.//

      That’s your assertion, but I don’t see how you can know that to be true given the fact that Krishna said no one can know his nature.
      "and that the Bhagavad Gita is an infallible book."
      //It would be completely superfluous for Krishna, after having declared His supreme, transcendental nature, to stop and say, "Oh, by the way, everything I am saying is infallible... in case you didn't know." //

      His supreme nature that he says no one can know? If he didn’t tell us that the Bhagavad Gita or Vedas are pure and without error then how can you know that they aren’t full of mistakes?

      //Also, Bhagavad-gita is part of a larger text, which is, in turn, part of the extensive Vedic library. Does every book of the Bible explicitly state "this is the infallible word of God?" I know for a fact that they don't all state that, thus rendering your implied argument here null.//

      No, but many many times the Bible says things that tell us the Scriptures are God’s Word, pure and flawless, and you’ve yet to show even 1 verse in any of your texts anywhere that tell us this.
      "Any further posts from you that are condescending like that will not be posted."
      //Well, it's your blog after all. It is just mind-boggling that you present yourself as a learned person on this subject matter, and yet you are so blatantly and demonstrably ignorant about the religions your arguments posture defeat over. It is, after all, easier to set up strawmen and defeat those instead.//

      All arbitrary claims, mixed with logical fallacy of question begging epithet (biased language).

      // You didn't happen to have a hand in creating those Jack Chick tracts, did you?//

      No. And the implied ad hominem that I’m uneducated isn’t appreciated.
      "I don't think that God is personal and revealed in the person of Jesus - I know it by revelation from God through the Bible."
      //That's fine. Replace "Bible" with "Bhagavad-gita" and you'll begin to understand the view of your so-called opposition.//

      That’s just what I’m trying to point out – you can’t interchange bible and Bhagavad Gita – they don’t even start to make similar claims. The Bible is unique in its claims to be the infallible Word of the personal creator God. A good article that talks more about this is here - http://creation.com/holy-books

      Delete
    3. "Again - why should I believe you or Gaudiya Vaisnava? How do you know that this is true?"
      //See above.//

      Refuted above. So again – how do you know it’s true? Do you even believe in a knowledge of absolute truth as being possible for human beings here on earth?
      "How do you know that? Where does it say that in the Vedas of Bhagavad Gita?"
      //Actually, the onus is on you to show where it says that EVERYTHING is maya. It also makes no sense to say that everything is illusion after explaining at length the absolute nature of the supreme person. At BARE minimum, that supreme person is not maya, according to those texts.//

      Even if I grant to you that this supreme person is not maya – how do you know that or know anything else to be true?

      //Even if everything else is maya, that maya rests on something real.//

      How do you know what real is to any degree?

      // "Illusion" doesn't mean completely false. It refers to accepting one thing as another. A common example or analogy is that of thinking a rope to be a snake. Just because it is not a snake doesn't mean the rope doesn't exist. So for you to characterize the Hindu concept of maya as meaning that they don't accept the possibility of certain knowledge or absolute truth is so amazingly false that I don't know why you even bother having a "Hindu" section on your site.//

      You’ve refuted yourself here when you say that what you think is a snake could actually be a rope. How do you know anything to be true if you can’t know the true nature of reality to any degree?
      "I've done a fair bit of study on other religions"
      //Well, you learn more everyday, right?//

      Yes. But the main thing I’m learning from you is the absurdity that results in ones beliefs when one rejects the one and only God.
      "I've posted a few links on my website under the Hinduism section. Did you take the time to read it?"
      //Yes.//

      Did you read the links? (The 3rd link was faulty as the URL had changed and I had to fix it up)
      "Are you a Hindu?"
      //For all intents and purposes. Although, the term "hindu" is a misnomer and not actually found in sastra (scripture.)//

      Did you grow up as a Hindu? I think that your thinking is very much western and very much borrowing from the Christian worldview which has a foundation of logic and truth. A true Hindu would not try to refute a Christian because they do not accept distinctions of any kind – it’s all Maya.

      Delete
  7. Austen G. can you give me a better understanding of what you mean by : "Krishna is God" 1) Can you give me a little more information about who Krishna is 2) How are you using the term "God" here? Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  8. "So if you can’t know the transcendental nature of God how can you know anything at all about him?"

    Nothing there said that I can't know.

    "What you were asked to provide was evidence from a Hindu text proving that they even CLAIM to be the innerant Word of God (as the Bible claims)."

    That evidence was provided. I have already explained how that evidence was provided and why it is absurd to argue that each (or ANY) distinct text requires an outright claim such as "This is the inerrant word of God."

    "//TEXT 17: I am the father of this universe, the mother, the support, and the grandsire. I am the object of knowledge, the purifier and the syllable om. I am also the Rg, the Sama, and the Yajur [Vedas].//

    Still nothing there saying that this god has given us an inspired Word."

    You're right in so far as there is no indication that these words were MERELY inspired by God. Rather, the speaker of these words is claiming to be God (with phrases such as, "father of this universe," "object of knowledge," etc.) Hence, it follows that these words are, as the texts allege--not inspired by God--but God's words, themselves.

    "Still no claim that they’ve communicated through any scriptures in any innerant infallible kind of way."

    Oh, you want information on the system known as Parampara; the system whereby, beginning from God Himself, this knowledge is passed down successively through spiritually pure and divinely authorized individuals? Of course, whether the claim is that the words came from God and maintains its integrity through parampara or was just written down and self-proclaims its integrity, we're on the same boat. At one point, the tradition was completely oral. The Vedas were compiled and divided into four by Srila Vyasadeva, who is explained as being God incarnate. You're free to look into that for yourself. The point here is that you don't have any special claim to saying that your tradition uniquely claims to be the word of God.

    "How do we know that it’s Krishna and not just the words of man? (Especially given that the earlier verse said we can’t know this god)"

    Short answer: By using our brains. Also, that earlier verse said no such thing. You are misrepresenting that verse and creating a strawman.

    "I’m not being intellectually dishonest or lying, but how do you get moral absolutes in your worldview in order to say that lying is absolutely wrong given the fact that your god cannot be known as stated in your own holy text?"

    Please see "strawman" comment above.

    "In the case of Hinduism you’ve yet to demonstrate any claims from your holy texts that tell us that those texts are the infallible word of Krishna or Brahma or any other god – so why should anyone believe them to be anything more than the fallible writings of men?"

    I've actually met the criteria you've asked for. The problem is that once I did this, you moved the goal posts to wanting kindergarten reading level affirmations despite that neither case brings you closer to acknowledging the claim as true, as you yourself have admitted. As is the case for many alleged holy writings, they are technically different books that are sometimes compiled into one. Whereas you seem to be ok with the compiled "Bible" as having stated somewhere in one of its various books that it is the word of the infallible God, others might similarly demand that that statement be made blatant for each individual book. Yet others might demand this be stated in each paragraph, each sentence or each syllable. And let's not overlook that when the statement is made that a text is the word of God, the natural question that arises is, "Where's the statement that lets me know that the statement that the text is the word of God is itself the word of God? I'm sure you can gather the implications of this question.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Austen - I asked in the first sentence how you can know something, and your response is basically 'you don't know that I can't know'. That's a non answer but actually yes, I can and do know that you can't know anything without the biblical God. (Prov 1:7) I don't think I've asked you this but - could you be wrong about everything you claim to know? (Forgive me if I've asked this before to you, but your responses have been lengthy and go back 3 days now and I don't have the time or inclination to go wading through again everything you've said - I've skimmed back through and can't see an answer to that question)

      Delete
  9. "There are other schools of thought because Hinduism is a man-made religion that is not true and because your religious texts are written by men and not the word of God."

    Just like how there are different denominations of Christianity. By your argument, we've just proven that Christianity is a man-made religion.

    "Do you believe in absolute truth?"

    I don't know that "believe" is the right word, but yes.

    "Where does it say in your religion that man can know absolute truth?"

    It says this anywhere it presumes to speak absolute truth. It is, without doubt, the import of such statements by dint of them being written for the sight and comprehension of men. Just as is the case of the question, "Where does it say your book is the inerrant word of God?" the answer is directly implied where it isn't blatantly stated. Perhaps (and certainly unintended on your part) we can say, by the implied admission of your own arguments and demands, that the Bible is like the elementary school level text on the subject of God and absolute truth where a text such as the Bhagavad-gita, for instance, would be something along the lines of high school or college level. So long as these sorts of elementary-level questions are being asked of "Hindu" texts, this assessment seems more than fair.

    "My understanding is that Hindus cannot know any absolute truths and do not believe in absolute laws of logic"

    I don't know how you arrived at this conclusion. I wouldn't be surprised if there is some group out there that is vaguely categorized as "Hindu" who believes in something like this. After all, even Christianity has Mormons, who, from what I've gathered, believe that God was once notGod who later became God and who worships an even greater God who was also once notGod and also worships an even greater God, etc. etc., ad infinitum. I am sure you and I agree that there is a problem with that sort of philosophy. You can say that Mormons aren't real Christians. I might similarly be inclined to say the same about the aforementioned "Hindus." Then again, I don't find in myself a strong desire of attachment for the "Hindu" nomenclature. The only reason I perk up to speak on its behalf is because they are all supposedly based on the same set of texts. "Hindu" tends to have more national significance than religious, it seems, as I have met self-proclaimed "atheist Hindus." On your web pages where you discuss Hinduism, it is clear that you're referring to Vedic philosophy and not just some group of people that might be atheist but identify themselves as belonging to a culture that is invariably intertwined with a system of religion that is anything BUT atheistic.

    ReplyDelete
  10. "and if they do exist in the hindu worldview they are not able to be known with any certainty."

    This claim of yours, as I've come to understand your overarching argument, is that in order to know absolute truth with certainty, one requires that it has been revealed to them by God. Is that correct? Where you and I are at odds is in how that revelation is established. At this point, I have explained at length how your criteria to the exclusion of my evidence makes no logical sense. I am even fine with you taking that previous sentence and questioning how it is that I have any semblance of an idea for what is logic and how its laws are absolute. My answer, like yours, can easily pertain to the observation that they flow from an absolute God. So, all things being equal, the point we are ACTUALLY at right now is trying to convince each other that our own set of holy texts are just that, holy. Frankly, I didn't come here with the expectation to convince you or proselytize. I imagine you can appreciate the opportunity to sharpen the sword of knowledge (as the saying goes.) My hope is that at least you will rethink your original assessment on the topic of Vedic religion and return with a better thought out and nuanced section on Hinduism.

    "No. And you can’t account for absolute morality without God so your claim is empty."

    "Without God" is not an issue I have to endure.

    "Just because a belief exists doesn’t make it true. How do you know anything to be absolutely true in your worldview?"

    Essentially the same way as you do.

    "//No. You just don't know what you're talking about.//

    How do you know that?"

    I've studied the subject matter long enough to know that when someone makes the statements that you have on your site, it can correctly be concluded that they don't have a very firm grasp on the subject.

    "That’s your assertion, but I don’t see how you can know that to be true given the fact that Krishna said no one can know his nature."

    Krishna didn't say that no one can know His nature.

    "His supreme nature that he says no one can know?"

    Question assumes strawman.

    "If he didn’t tell us that the Bhagavad Gita or Vedas are pure and without error then how can you know that they aren’t full of mistakes?"

    If God didn't tell you that the statement that the Bible is pure and without error is itself pure and without error, then how do you know that it isn't full of mistakes?

    "No, but many many times the Bible says things that tell us the Scriptures are God’s Word, pure and flawless, and you’ve yet to show even 1 verse in any of your texts anywhere that tell us this."

    Nor am I required to.

    "All arbitrary claims, mixed with logical fallacy of question begging epithet (biased language)."

    Claims I continue to demonstrate.

    "No. And the implied ad hominem that I’m uneducated isn’t appreciated."

    It is clear that to call you uneducated would be to state a glaring falsehood. I have made no such generalization regarding all subjects upon which one can be learned. Rather, the implication was that your assessment of other religions (or at least Vedic religion) is similar in veracity to that of the infamous Jack Chick tracts.

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    1. Are you Matthew Steele? Your style of writing is similar to his.

      "How do you know anything to be absolutely true in your worldview?"

      //Essentially the same way as you do.//

      No, because you are claiming a different source of revelation that is not from the Bible. You are making all sorts of wild claims dressed up as knowledge but in reality you cannot know what you're claiming to know. You claim to believe in absolute truth, and absolute morality but this is not possible for you to know from hindu based beliefs.

      Delete
  11. "I don't think that God is personal and revealed in the person of Jesus - I know it by revelation from God through the Bible."
    //That's fine. Replace "Bible" with "Bhagavad-gita" and you'll begin to understand the view of your so-called opposition.//

    "That’s just what I’m trying to point out – you can’t interchange bible and Bhagavad Gita – they don’t even start to make similar claims. The Bible is unique in its claims to be the infallible Word of the personal creator God."

    I'm not going to "beat a dead horse," as the saying goes, by explaining to you how they actually do both make this claim since I've already done that in my above response. What I find particularly interesting is that you invoke God as "creator," which I assume you do so because you think it brings more veracity to your position here. Why is that of notable importance to you? If God had decided to not create anything at all, would that consequently make God less than God? What, in your understanding, is the significance of God's quality of being a creator against other, transcendental God qualities such as being full in power, knowledge, etc.?

    "A good article that talks more about this is here - http://creation.com/holy-books "

    Thanks. I'll take a look.

    "Refuted above."

    Refutation of alleged refutation above.

    "So again – how do you know it’s true? Do you even believe in a knowledge of absolute truth as being possible for human beings here on earth?"

    Yes.

    "Even if I grant to you that this supreme person is not maya – how do you know that or know anything else to be true?"

    The same way you know it about the supreme person, as per your understanding.

    "How do you know what real is to any degree?"

    The eternal and supreme God constitutes the basis of what we call reality. That is how I know. In other words... the same way you know.

    // "Illusion" doesn't mean completely false. It refers to accepting one thing as another. A common example or analogy is that of thinking a rope to be a snake. Just because it is not a snake doesn't mean the rope doesn't exist. So for you to characterize the Hindu concept of maya as meaning that they don't accept the possibility of certain knowledge or absolute truth is so amazingly false that I don't know why you even bother having a "Hindu" section on your site.//

    "You’ve refuted yourself here when you say that what you think is a snake could actually be a rope."

    I did not say that what I think is a snake could actually be a rope. I made a general statement about how snakes and ropes can be (mis)understood. Just because this mistake CAN be made, doesn't mean I am making it. You are just as (in)capable of making this mistake. In fact, your entire presuppositionalist argument acknowledges the concept of maya when it asserts that, without God, one can't have knowledge. The light of God dissipates the thick fog of maya/ignorance. In other words, you illustrate the validity of this "Hindu" concept while simultaneously attempting to poke holes through it, funnily enough.

    "Yes. But the main thing I’m learning from you is the absurdity that results in ones beliefs when one rejects the one and only God."

    If that is the case, then the main thing I am learning from you is that you might only posture as being open to learning.

    "Did you read the links?"

    I'll look through the links again when I get a chance. I would imagine any links would be supplementary to the core of your website's information on the subject, and since that core information is lacking or plainly false, I don't see how you can think that links are going to help.

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  12. "Did you grow up as a Hindu? I think that your thinking is very much western and very much borrowing from the Christian worldview which has a foundation of logic and truth."

    It's funny when Christians say these sorts of things; as if Vedic India consisted of primarily backward, illogical peoples bereft of even the concept of truth.

    "A true Hindu would not try to refute a Christian because they do not accept distinctions of any kind – it’s all Maya."

    Those to whom you are referring (pure advaitists [monists] ala the Sankaracharya school of thought) might still attempt to refute a Christian even if they do not agree to see you as something distinct and called "Christian." "Maya" is not merely a blanket statement that Hindus by and large use to avoid having discerning conversations on metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, etc. Dvaitist (dualist) or qualified dvaitist thinkers also do not have the problem you're accusing Hindus of having since they, like you, acknowledge a distinction between God and universe, spirit and matter, self and body, etc. And even WITHIN the spiritual category, distinctions are understood by these dvaita-related schools. Concluding that because there exist various schools of thought, therefore the whole lot of them are wrong is proven false when one points out that not every man who encountered Jesus accepted Him as Divine. Just as it does not require ever person who encounters Jesus to accept His Divinity in order for Him to actually be Divine, it is not a requisite that every person who encounters Veda must understand it in the proper way in order for it to have credibility.

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  13. "I asked in the first sentence how you can know something, and your response is basically 'you don't know that I can't know'."

    No. My response was not basically that AT ALL. Go ahead and quote exactly what I said in response to your first sentence and tell me how it even remotely means "you don't know that I can't know." I already KNOW that you've either misunderstood what I've stated, or you're purposely twisting my words so as to segue into your Christian presuppositionalist pitch.

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    1. I don't believe I'm twisting anything. Please answer my questions honestly and openly or no further comments from you will be published. Could you be wrong about everything you claim to know? Are you Matthew Steele?

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  14. @John Hayes

    You wrote:
    "can you give me a better understanding of what you mean by : "Krishna is God" 1) Can you give me a little more information about who Krishna is 2) How are you using the term "God" here? Thanks"

    What sort of information are you asking for? I am using the term "God" here in the typical, monotheistic sense of a supreme, absolute owner and controller of all potencies manifest and unmanifest. I hope that answers your question.

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