Catholic vs. Atheist - 2018-12-22 - Aron Ra

Author Recorded Saturday December 22nd, 2018

There are 47 episodes in the Versus:Atheist series.

Recorded February 9th, 2019

Catholic vs. Atheist - 2019-02-09 - Greg

Recorded September 11th, 2016

Catholic vs. Atheist - 2016-09-11 - Renaud

Going into this I knew nothing about Mr. Ra, but from his picture I knew I had a real character on my hands. He did not disappoint. The more I listen to him, the more I like him. I have a special fondness for that charming combination of gruff hostility and naive innocence. And he's funny, tooI have never laughed so much during an interview.Here's part 2 with Aron Ra: you enjoy this kind of stuff, check out my lively chat with Matt Dillahunty:

Under Construction

Under Construction

These YouTube transcripts are generated automatically and are therefore unformatted and replete with errors.
hi mr Enron you're listening to Catholic versus atheist so just tell the listeners a little bit about yourself if you would please who you are what you believe and how you came to believe what you believe okay well I don't like to refer to it as beliefs I mean if I say that I believe something it means that I think this is what it's most likely true or at least mostly true but I don't actually know that that's what distinguishes a belief it's when you think something's true but you can't know it because you can't demonstrate it whereas believers often claim to know things no one even can know and they when they say the word believe it is very often with the word make hyphenated but in front of it so make believe though that it see it seems to be you know that the word means pretend in some way so I don't like I don't like to mix the concept and as far as what my position is it's not just that I see no evidence of there being a god I see substantial evidence that all of our concepts are God's came from relatively primitive initial ideas of you know superior people or people with magic powers that have been transcended to become magic imaginary friends and that that is all there ever was to it and as far as I have you know any denomination you've identify as Catholic which is an interesting conversation itself especially in recent years but I don't like to specify my attacks against a particular denomination or even in particular religion my problem is religion in a total and it's not necessarily even religion my problem is faith faith is the most dishonest position it is possible to have the only way to make faith less honest is to be an apologist for faith so Before we jump into all that exciting stuff let's talk a little bit about you who are you how are you raised where were you raised just talk about biographical details please oh thank you thank you I am currently I mean I am the original director for American atheists and author of foundational falsehoods of creationism which is done very well on Amazon and is very highly rated and as far as my perspective I think it was to my advantage that I was raised in a predominantly Mormon culture most of my family are Mormon or what they call Jack Mormons because nobody knows what a Creed is they've never cracked open a Bible they don't know anything religious at all but they're all better than me because despite all their felony convictions chemical addictions and everything else they can claim that you know they're Christians so they're better than men what does Christian mean well that means that they call themselves Christian that's what that means and that's all that that means and the rest of the family of course that goes right down to the magic underwear and all of that game traffic and you know I mean where they hear the prophets say that no Mormon will ever be elected president of this country so they go out and vote for Mitt Romney anyway the hell did you just conveniently forget with your prophet said but the advantage that I had in being raised you know if I by Mormons I never identified as Mormon myself because I did the only wise thing anybody should do is which is not assume that your parents religion is your religion but here in Texas people don't know the difference that they think they're born into the Republican Party literally they say that they would actually use the words at the party they're born into and thus Oh allegiance to the Republican Party the party of their forefathers the party that were born into seriously so any any way but you people are irrational yeah and politics is easily easily as irrational as a religion and possibly more irrational than religion but the reason that I say that it was an advantage was when I was living let's say in the Four Corners area you know Utah Nevada Arizona New Mexico Colorado I just named five states but you know living in that area it is predominantly Mormon you know Mormons own and control everything there and and there's little small towns in that area that if you're not Mormon you're not employed so you need to move someplace else where they will hire non-mormons and we ended up moving to Los Angeles when I was a kid and that's when I got to experience Christian denomination bigotry you know hatred against other denominations and anyone professing to be a Catholic has got to know all about that because you're not even true Christians you're just the majority of Christians which has always made you laugh I mean if they give if all of the Protestants say the Catholics are not true well you then you are no longer the dominant religion are you because if over half of you are Catholic and they're not true Christians well that makes you the fifth largest religion just above Sikhs that there are more Hindus than there are true Christians in this world oh so yeah Islam is the dominant religion followed by Catholicism and then dropping down to Hinduism and then Christianity if that's the way they want to work it but as I said it's completely irrational so that nobody ever actually thinks any of these things through when soil Christianity is not a religion it's a philosophy it's the dominant religion a religion is a faith-based belief system holding or positing the notion that some essence itself somehow survives the death of the physical body to continue on in some more of their form if you are part of a faith-based belief system positing that idea that is a religion if you worship your favorite football team that is not a religion that's a different problem you have I've just discovered Leo Messi Leonel Messi I have not discovered that person yet okay well when you do you will see the light okay but I'm not a sports fan but I just fell in love with this one soccer player because he's so good and this brings me to the notion of God the reason I love God is because he's so good what's your counter argument against that the fact that he's nothing but evil without any redeeming features whatsoever so we're not talking about the same guy here three five five six and seven so you're using some private judgment here am i yeah what the did God dude it wasn't hating everything he does is good he never does where is the exception to all of the evil he does in the Bible he's incapable of ever committing any evil ever oh then the Bible's written about somebody else then well you need to interpret the Bible it was somebody else who killed millions of people for making too much noise it was somebody else who blew up a town because they weren't righteous enough because God's weird judgment is that the only people in both of those situations both in the global flood and in the destruction of Sodom the only guy righteous enough graded on a curve to be saved is the drunk who sodomized his own kids that's the guy in both instances that's the only guy worthy of being safe that's how I used to see Noah - but now Noah is one of my favorite patriarchs I'm playing the role of Noah to you so I say get into the ark meaning the Holy Roman Catholic Church get in while I still have time you don't know how much time you've got left so just get in that's what I say to you what do you say I have to wonder how it was that if you were born into a Catholic family and raised to be Catholic all your life how could you still be Catholic now I wasn't born and raised Catholic so what's your Excuse it's got even worse I came to God through philosophy and then I took a leap of faith into religion okay so two wrong answers in one that's good so so philosophy to my experiences is something that is grossly misused especially when it applies to religion or whatever it is applied to religion it's misused and then anything that any belief that requires faith should be rejected for that reason because faith is Auto deceptive has absolutely no way of determining the truth about anything but it's a great way of staying wrong forever and never realizing it James Randi had a million-dollar challenge for 20 years for anybody to demonstrate anything from the supernatural and he had lots of people come to him convinced thoroughly convinced that they could demonstrate their supernatural powers I can demonstrate the supernatural to you in two minutes what do you have freedom of your will if so you believe in the supernatural well no no actually if I were to believe it was supernatural I would not be able to believe in free will because your theology prohibits freewill no it doesn't yeah absolutely does it logically does and nobody understands us because religious believers don't think logically but if somebody is supposed to know your future and God knows everything that we're going to do and he's able to calculate every contingency for everything anybody ever wants to do is still know your futures then you don't have free will you can't change what you're gonna do he already knows what you're gonna do so the knowledge not cause I can know what you're gonna do without being the cause of what you do but it doesn't have to be the cause of it and if he knows what you're gonna do then he knows what you're gonna do before you do so you can't not do the thing that he knew you were gonna do you have no free will in a world where prophecy can exist and be fulfilled free will cannot exist they cancel each other about the prophecy in Nineveh of Jonah where he said if you don't repent then your cities gonna be destroyed and then they repented in the city was not destroyed Jonah complained to God he said look he made me look like a fool you made me prophesy and my prophecy didn't come true and God said well it's because they changed their ways so God can't see the future that he sees everything so God said that this was gonna happen he tells the Prophet the Prophet says it then it doesn't happen in God tells a guy well see it didn't have because they changed their way so prophecy doesn't work so either prophecy doesn't work or freewill doesn't work because I mean Ezekiel obviously didn't know what real true prophecy was he failed at everything Isiah failed at everything - that's not what the Church teaches I know because the Church teaches lies the church does not teach truth the truth is what the facts are the church isn't interested in that the church is teaching philosophy incorrectly to dupe people into believing and then paying out their tithe so are you happy with a natural first cause which is uncaused or do you have an infinite regress of natural causes what do you mean I believe that there is an uncaused first cause that's my god okay okay well can I correct you on that sure okay so there's not an uncaused first cause if there was an uncaused first cause it wouldn't be a God because God is way more complicated no he's perfectly simple what he's perfectly simple donor Rep donor up here the explanation where people want to go from simple to complex they want to produce this more complex thing than the simple beginning the more complex thing would be the God that they've imagined that however at the same time my friends who do cosmology say there's no beginning to the universe there is no first cause necessary but if there was then it would be possibly a an influx from a multiverse with it just expands our universe just like it would hundreds of millions of others your appeal to physics and call zoology saying that there was a multiverse before this universe just pushes the problem back one level well so does God in neither case do we get the uncaused for well in your case you get a cause first cause being the eternal God but as Sagan brilliantly put it well if you're gonna put that in why not skip a step and just say that the universe was eternal which is what the cosmologists are now saying because the universe is subject to change yes and an effect cannot be more perfect than its cause do you admit to that principle an effect cannot be more perfect than its cause absolutely yes it's a product of emergence so it starts from very simple doesn't start from super complex and then get simple it starts very simple and becomes more complex because we're talking about the principle of emergence which is emergence complexity do things in nature tend to order or do they tend to disorder tell me in biology they tended to order right but in general overall in the general in biology they tend in the torturer in the big picture of biology they tend to order and how big is the picture of biology in the history of the universe for what we know of this planet so far don't dance around the issue just tell me honestly I'm not I'm answering the question you keep asking the typical creationist trope of misunderstanding what the second law of thermodynamics is but biology does not refute that it's simply that this is not a closed system biology gets its energy from the Sun so it's but are we or are we not reverse entropy machines reverse entropy machines well that's not the way I would put it but yeah biological life is reversing entropy correct how by organizing things tend to disorder in the universe okay so when McDonald's began with one simple store and is now turned into this massive corporation spreading around the world that that required reverse entropy that required reverse entropy okay of course this is basic science I can't believe here's the corporation of McDonald's basic science no entropy is basic science if you don't know that reverse entropy is what do as I was just explaining because you hadn't mentioned the second law before I did but you're trying to obfuscate this thing by saying let's only talk about yes you're the one trying to obvious K you're trying to say let's focus only on biology but biology is by definition realm the only realm of reverse entropy you know as we just explained the corporation of McDonald's is another example there is no corporation of McDonald's without biological life don't try to slip that past me I'm not trying to slip anything past you are you are misunderstanding of the second law of thermodynamics that creationists always cite is they want everything there that went nothing nothing to be able to get more complex than it started out no but the fact is a wheat since we get our energy from the Sun and it's not a closed system than all their arguments for entropy bail you must be talking to a bunch of morons every day all day yes I talked to creation all biological life reverses entropy that's the whole point we cannot have a natural first cause we cannot yes we can in one sense or another it will still be natural so you believe in an eternal universe yes no beginning yes okay as I already told you before because well just are now saying that it has no beginning in that sense you can appeal to any authority you want but doesn't mean I need to agree with you I don't need to appeal to Authority you have been appealing to Authority I don't specialize in cosmology I have to trust what the scientists tell me on that and then they give a number of options of possibilities that are not necessarily declared by those scientists but according to my own study so I'm not appealing to any authority okay so I think we've exhausted this particular tangent you want to talk about the morality of God in the morality of the church again the character in the story that is God did nothing to warrant being called love or wisdom or any of the other accolades that are heaped upon him the Bible is not the work of a superior being this was the work of ignorant primitives pretending to speak for a god no superior being certainly not a supreme being would allow any association with the Bible I was a twelve-year-old when I tried to read the Bible I did he I think I might have gotten out of Genesis before I threw the book across the room and discussed and I had I get offered a prayer when I still believed in God that he he had better explain himself because that the way the Bible describes him is just that's that's not a thing to be worshipped this is not a thing that I want to be stuck with for all of eternity you know and I knew that I was damning myself to hell because I still believe to hell I was 12 I knew that I was damning myself by by saying this you know when I had when I prayed it said you can I just died cuz then go why would I want to be with something like that I mean this is a that this was like a carrot like little Anthony Fremont out of the twilight zone this is monster that he wish anything he wants and he can read your mind so you better always be thinking pleasant thoughts and if you AV ever does anything horrible which is all he ever does then you somehow got a SOHO that was a good thing that you killed all those people for no reason that was good yeah what do you think that I believe that I should not believe about morality specifically Catholic teachings about what's right and what's wrong what do I accept and believe that I should not where do the Catholics come off claiming to be moral about anything aren't they the blackest history and Oliver Lee I mean let's just exclude not just in the denominations of Christianity I mean not only are the most evil of all the denominations of Christianity but on religion as a whole I mean they have the the bleakest history of corruption of look at all the different popes but the ones that are transmitting STDs and and and raping choir boys and and all the ones that are admitting that you know hey this that this religion scam is a great way for us to make a ton of cash you get quotes from all these Pope's doing this right until right and it's not a surprise that we get up to the Hitler Youth who then has to be you know went to Darth Ratzinger who would have to put him off in seclusion someplace for comfort defending priests I mean like when every parish has to admit having hundreds of pedophile priests this is not a coincidence okay this wow this is a systemic problem now yeah I think your problem is hyperbole do you think that I believe that a creepy old priest raping a young boy is a good thing of course not so why all the jumping up and down because you're talking about morality which kind of excludes Catholicism feynman conversation who's more Catholic for you the priest who obeys what the Church teaches or the priest who disobeys and rapes the young boy which ones more Catholic for you when you have that many pedophile priests they're not necessarily disobeying they're actually doing what the whole organization was structure to do so your true sincere belief you're not in entertainer mode you're telling me as a sincere human being that you think that the Catholic Church thinks that pedophilia is good or at least neutral that it's not evil and that we should protect those who engage in it is that we're saying they're not saying hey pedophilia is good but they are saying hey if you want to rape little boys we'll help you get away with it so you tell me is that good or is that evil it is evil to condone evil that's what the Church teaches in Catholicism is evil no the people within the church are evil we talked about Cardinal Pell we talked about all the higher-ups or we talked about just the priests or the entire collection every single sinner is a sinner and every single criminal is a criminal okay so now we have an organization of criminals protecting criminals criminals and sinners right what did you think it was about that's exactly what I thought it was it's an organization of criminals protecting criminals that's what Catholicism is that's what it is but that's not all that it is right what what else can it be that matters listen if you send your son to hockey and it gets molested by the hierarchy in that hockey organization it's a group of criminals and sinners that are perpetrating that okay or elementary school teachers do you know that the percentage of abuse in the church by priests is lower than in elementary schools know it I don't think that that can be possible anymore but given the news reports that we've been seeing just in the last couple of years now I've seen this for going on for I don't know 30 years and now just in the last couple of years we're finally seeing higher ups within Catholicism actually facing charges actually being taken down we have an organization that promotes criminality and has a history of always having promoted corrupt criminality exclusively that has more evil on their books than any other denomination and on top of all of this we now finally get to the culmination where people are all saying you know what this has been going on for what's 15 hundred years since the fall and we're just now noticing it on a national scale yeah there's a will blindness among criminals and sinners and there's a willing blindness even among victims why do you think people don't come forward for 40 years it's cuz I have to process this right it's not easy but evil is evil it doesn't matter if it's a priest doing it or it's a high school teacher or a hockey coach evil is evil right so that makes me wonder getting into religion you first have to accept faith that's not the first step that's not the first step no that would have to be the first no the first step is a rational deduction that I am NOT the first cause and that God is the first cause the uncaused cause understand every argument for God is a logical fallacy and I could probably name most of them because I keep seeing them all being repeated and you brought up a couple today so it is always fallacious thinking it is an irrational position to assume that there is a God of God is not even possible it certainly isn't indicated by the evidence and anytime you assume a belief that is not evidently true that by definition is irrational so your first thing you have to do is you have to give up skeptical thinking you have to give up rationalism to assume things on faith you're already done you've already crossed a threshold I can't breach have you read the great intellect of the Catholic tradition is this a comedy show yes it is haven't you noticed no but who are the greatest intellects who comes to mind when I say the great intellects of the Catholic Agustin and Aquinas come on I was going to say a coin is and an sounds yeah yes that's another good example and although I can't remember on Psalms ontological argument yes not then which nothing greater can be thought yeah so there's we have three different fit well actually four if you throw in to cart but there's there's three huge failures in philosophy and they seem to be the foundation of Catholicism or at least Christianity and Aquinas is one of those do you think that you're smarter than these giants these intellectual Giants I have to Wow I have to having analyzed their arguments and realize the conclusion they come up with if this is your math and you came up with that conclusion yeah you're an idiot that's that's where we are yes so your intellectual Giants of philosophy morons who can you name me that is above you intellectually that is wiser smarter more intelligent I have a number of friends that I think are considerably smarter than me household names though I want okay one yeah I found him a bit rude when I talked to him he seemed to be like you and as much as he was really really interested in entertaining his listeners more than just actually being honest I'm not saying that you're not honest but I think you have a a habit of being dramatic and being larger-than-life is that something you've heard before no I wouldn't have thought so this is you this is the real you it's it's all very it's all very exaggerated you know like every parish every Catholic parish has hundreds of priests we're lucky if we have one priest per parish and you're talking about hundreds of priests per parish okay do I need to pull up the news stories because it would take me a minute to do that but I can well up to recent news stories where you have like this I think it was the state of Pennsylvania Oh a state may have hundreds five hundred pedophile priests just in Pennsylvania so you made a mistake when you said a parish a parish is one little local neighborhood truth well unless you're in Louisiana as I started out with because they use counties they call them parishes instead of okay instead of diocese yes Dennis eysies yeah it's it's a much bigger group so yeah that's what I was okay okay so we don't disagree then I'd like to ask my friends what is the difference between the best-case scenario and the worst-case scenario for any human being because from my Catholic perspective there's heaven and hell awaiting each one of us well why do you believe in hell because of morality that was the first thing I let go of as a child because I feel it was impossible because of morality if there are no lasting consequences it literally does not matter what choices we make morality is not the issue gullibility is the issue okay it doesn't matter how evil you are all sins will be forgiven if you but believe the unsupported assertions of impossible absurdities sold to you by the priests who don't know what the hell they're talking about they literally don't know it talking about so gullibility is the sole criteria for redemption it doesn't matter how good or bad you are I'm a believer you're a non-believer what's the lasting consequence for each of us and how do they differ is there any difference between my lasting outcome and your lasting outcome well even your Bible because remember the hell concept didn't come from actual theology the hell concept that you have now was adopted from Dante's Inferno so I mean that wasn't even in the scriptures I mean you do have that line out of Revelations where Jesus says he himself will be crushing the unbelievers in the bloody wine press I mean so he's being a vindictive bastard in that but we know it's not actually him talking right because only the four Gospels are supposed to purport to talk about what he actually said others like Timothy and them they're just making up that they want Jesus to say or we're like in Daniel where they're just pretending that Jesus said things to them in their dreams so they can manipulate their vision of Elvis working in the 7-eleven after he died so that they can promote their own ideas as if it was being condoned by God this is why I think you're a great entertainer not a great thinker I understand that you don't think of a great thinker and you still believe something I had to reject when I was 12 because it insulted my intelligence as a child so what is the difference in outcome between you the genius and me the I'm not calling myself a genius so what is the difference of outcome for you the relatively smart guy and from either relatively gullible guy as I started to say even your Bible talks about what would the real punishment was not going to be in hell that the punishment is supposed to be done in this life that God was got enough punish people in this life not in the next one so the the repercussions are equal for both of us the reasons why we behave in a manner keeping us out of arrest might be our fear of police and incarceration or it might be that we being having evolved as a social species we have a natural built-in empathy for our family friends and fellows we have compassion for other people and this is something while aberrations occur all the time those people tend to be removed from the gene pool they're either you know people who are extremely selfish have underdeveloped frontal lobes or a lack of mirror neurons whatever they just do selfish compulsive things to benefit themselves if they're not elected president then what they might end up doing is being banished or imprisoned or killed okay on principle what argument can make to a person like that to change their ways and to be less selfish given the fact that they have more money than you they have more women than you they have more pleasure than you they have better food than you and they I don't know from the example that keeps coming to mind doesn't have more pleasure or better food I don't think there's anything you could say to that person what I could say is that you better change your ways and get into the arc their Catholic Church or you're gonna burn in hell for all eternity no week we can say that the impeachment and incarceration seemed imminent but you haven't answered my question what could you say on principle mm-hmm that would make this person who is sophisticated in his selfishness and is driving a lot of pleasure more than you from his life well again no you can't limit this to Donald Trump you have to go with the thought experiment there's someone more sophisticated out there than Donald Trump believe it or not there really is so stretch your mind and what could you say that don't come you to stretch my mind I'm aware of lots of people you keep coming back to Donald Trump because it's an amusing yeah it is you're an entertainer so what can you think with him and with others like him in our society we have a way of dealing with those people they tend to be ostracized from the rest of the community either by banishment or by imprisonment or by being killed or what-have-you so there's no principle and that's what ends up happening it is so there's no principle in the course of population mechanics we end up with a preference for people who have more compassion for their humanity so there's no principled what do you mean there's no principled I'm asking you to give this man a principle not a stick that says society will curb your behavior No enlighten him with a principle please okay so the way that I generally put it is it I don't actually hate things I mean I I have to confess I hate lies and Liars I really do and that's that's the most irritating thing and that's one of the things that keeps me going but it is honestly the only thing I so many people around me just hate every damn thing and I hear all about everything but what I've told people is it nobody gives a damn what you hate that's not what's gonna that's not what people are gonna remember about you oh yeah yours here's the thing I mean if it's the things that you love hmm dear you in other people's memory right so look maybe in our in our friendship you I find that you you love budgies maybe just got a weird thing for budgies whatever it is you just love them and so every time I see a budgie I think of you that's nice now it's not like when you like my neighbor who give you any ten minute conversation with my neighbor and it always turns into them damn Mexicans seriously I have I have a good friend I'm the guy I've known for decades and I warned my wife when he came over that it won't be ten minutes in our house he won't be ten minutes in our house before he blames everything on the Liberals knowing that I'm a liberal and he'll ruin dinner he'll ruin the evening but this is what this guy's gonna do and it was he walked in at ten minutes he didn't know my wife was a public school teacher but he threw that into because he hated public school he hates education because he's stupid that's what he hates education so right away if SCIM damn liberals and their teachers get out I'm gonna move to less personal topics now so it won't be about you being a non-catholic and me being a Catholic it'll be about philosophy there's no curious about the Catholic thing I mean what could possibly convince you that there would be a god and if there was a god why the would you choose the Christian God and if you're gonna choose the Christian God would you choose the worst possible encapsulation instead of trying to convince you that my rationale is reasonable I don't think that will work why don't you tell me what danger I'm in by submitting to what you think is an evil and corrupt organization I know some people that are working on the clergy project and a clergy project is for priests had have spent their lives at the pulpit you know repeating lies and eventually they realized that they're lying they don't buy their own anymore but they've been so invested in this they're like professional priests and what the hell else do you do when you're forty some odd years old and this all you've been as a minister your old life so they end up they go to the clergy project where they often can't even come out there but they're often still at the pulpit still lying to the congregation knowing that what they're saying is not even true but they got to do it anyway but one of the things that we've noticed one of the psychological factors that we've noticed some people that come out of religious belief is they tend to be more tolerant and they're more curious it is like literally a reawakening some of them go back to college some of them start learning it they start voting liberally I mean it's an amazing thing all of these all of these separate factors maybe they were hateful homophobic you know misogynist whatever and and completely incurious they don't care what the real answer is I've had people tell me that if it doesn't directly affect the amount of food need to know but then yeah I'm serious I can't even imagine being like that but that's the way it seems the common people are they don't want to discuss anything that is outside of grandpas memory that was no that was never my limitation yeah but people when they come out of the clergy they do kind of wake up in a number of ways yes those who are asleep I have no doubt wake up and I appreciate the work that you're doing if you're involved in that these people do need to wake up and they do need to leave the clergy there are cancer on the church they need to be purged and I'm glad that you're helping them no shirt you don't physic cancer that's not what I believe you people getting rid of the problem are not the problem no but those who are lying in the pulpit are the problem and if you can't see that you're blind well then we need to get rid of that all the priests then and not just the ones who know that they're lying no if you're preaching the gospel but you think it's a lie you are sinning but the gospel could nonetheless be true you would make that much there are many things that could be true that we can't show to be true but we can't say they're true if we can't show that they're true every religion tells two lies it sites facts that are not facts and pretends to know things nobody knows who God is what he is and what he wants and what haven't in hell all of these are asserted is fact and you're pretending to know things you don't know and nobody who has a reason to believe if I'm wrong then you and I are headed for exactly the same annihilation but if you're wrong you're in big trouble have you ever burnt your finger it really hurts I can't be wrong on this and you can't be right on this so you have nothing to worry about I don't have anything to worry about you've got the idea of a hell which if it were real it would disprove God no yes yes the idea of having an eternal eternal Live Indie jillion years times a factor of Levendi jillion years continued on forever of melting your flesh off of your body letting it regrow and melt and melting it back off again just to cause you as much pain as possible why because you were too smart to buy the story for no good reason you were supposed to believe impossible nonsense for no good reason and you didn't buy the impossible nonsense so now the infinite wisdom of loving beneficial goodness is going to have to torture you forever and you're being judged you exist only for a spark there was an eternity in which you didn't exist there will be an eternity where you don't exist and you only exist for this spark and you're given this choice do you accept only provisionally what you can determine to be true like an honest person or will you believe impossible nonsense for no good reason well you chose rational belief so now we're gonna have to punish you for ever and ever the problem is not in the intellect you'll never get punished for the intellect it's the will you don't have good will what if I only have good will we're talking about me now right if you only have good will you go to heaven that doesn't make any sense well what do you wanna go to hell because I don't believe in God and I blaspheme against the Holy Ghost are you asking what my perspective is my Catholic perspective is that if you only have good will then you go to heaven period where is that written that's Catholic dogma without ill-will there is no possibility of sin where is that written it's the definition of sin the definition of sin is having ill-will that's the definition of sin you choose a lower good over a higher good and you'd make that willful choice oh I thought sin was when you violate God's law because you know when you look up the definition of sin it's a violation of whatever is attributed to God's law so if you don't keep the feast of weeks then you're a sinner in violation of God's law which religion is yours so I need to keep the feast of weeks according to the Jewish tradition it's one of the Ten Commandments yes you're interpreting the Ten Commandments for me and I don't submit I don't bow to your authority I bow to the authority of Pope Francis right well I thought it was Jesus because Jesus said that you had to obey every jot and tittle of all those old mosaic laws yes I have to obey everything according not to your interpretation but according to the interpretation of the Vicar of Christ the Holy Father the Pope right you're not the Pope if you were the Pope then I would probably not be Catholic right George Carlin said he said I have just as much authority as the Pope just not as many people who realize that that's true I mean look at look at the Hitler Youth you had this last I mean that the ones living in exile now really listen to that guy I love him you love the criminal who who spent decades protecting pedophile priests and that's why they had to remove him from oh yeah but you need to realize that I'm commanded to love everyone right but I love the Pope's in a special way I do love the pedophile priests by the way I do love them I wish them well okay I don't yeah you don't of course not okay how could I love people who use lives and to see you just told me that you never have ill will you only have good will love is willing the good of the other and you just told me now that you do not will the good of the pedophile priests I said I do not like them I don't like them either I never said I liked them I said I love them I'm commanded to love them all I said was that I do not like them well you said you do not love them but you can change your mind I'm happy to accept that I don't love them either okay you do not love them love would be an extreme version of like if I don't like that I obviously can't love your definition is arbitrary the real definition of love is to will the good of the other otherwise how could Jesus command us to love our enemies that makes no sense love has to be the Willing of the good of the other it's a choice and when I look up the definition of love I get a strong affection for another rising out of kin super personal tries or an attraction based on sexual desire or an affection based on admiration so you have to do all that to enemies I can guarantee you that if you love your enemies according to Webster's dictionary you're gonna be really messed up I said that love is an extreme form of like and that I do not love them if I do if I don't like them I certainly don't love them which means I do not do the thing to my enemies that use you insist because you've misunderstood what I said but do you want the best for everyone yes or no that's good will did I say that I hate lies and Liars and that that was my only exception yeah all right then so you don't only have goodwill then I did say that the only exception was that I hate lies and lawyers yes okay so we can move on past this so you enjoy your work absolutely yes yeah it's every day you're doing what podcast or shows or what do you do I do I do some educational videos my wife and I do a show a series of videos where we're trying to teach middle school and high school science unapologetically including certain forbidden concepts like deep time and evolution and I do a systematic classification of life series where I described phylogeny about the various reasons why we belong to particular clades and what a clade is I'm a director of the phylogeny Explorer project which is an attempt to render the entire taxonomic Tree of Life is a navigable online encyclopedia of the whole Tree of Life and we've been years on it and we've got a couple of hundred people working on it as well and so I'm really proud to be involved in that project and otherwise I do podcasts and interviews like this and the occasional pwnage video which I've had the great fun of being able to do that for some what is that pwnage is it wood there are some hate preachers and I like to get their videos and show how what they just said is wrong and how we know that they how we know for certain that what they said is wrong and that the guy who said it knew that it was wrong when he said it and how we know that okay why would someone like you come on to my show and I'm absolutely nobody I've got very few listeners why would you take the time I really appreciate it well one I would that's nice and - because you know I have a goal if you tell me that you were an atheist once but I've interviewed a few people like this and and the it's it's one thing when somebody tells me that they never had a religious belief and then they became religious but when they tell me that they were an atheist and I can verify that they actually were an atheist I mean because I know a couple of people that were actually activists atheists activists once upon a time and then became Christians well I'm very curious have talked to those people because I want to know what was the reason what convinced you because you started out rationally thinking and then you adopted in a rational position how did you do that I went through solipsism exactly so it's always a logical fallacy there's never evidence to indicate the position it's always fallacious yeah I could be wrong wait if I am wrong it doesn't really matter right you'd make that much no no you're doing harm to yourself in your community by believing in lies okay and how long does that harm last it can't harm you for the rest of your life when I finally adopted full-on skepticism when I realized that I had been duped all my life into believing all of this farcical nonsense I mean I was in my 30s and I felt and I know it so many other people have said something similar that all this time of their lives that they wasted believing things that weren't true I do not want to believe a lie then why are you Catholic because I believe it's true what you're believing a lie yeah that's according to you but I don't submit to you you see what I mean I I know you don't submit to me but the reality is one way or another you are believing teachings by people who don't know what they're talking about expressing facts that are not facts with knowledge they do not have you need to understand that when I weigh your words of wisdom against 2000 years worth of the words of wisdom of the Saints I am moved by the love of the Saints and I'm stimulated rationally by the intellect of the Saints more than you moved me by your love I'm not saying you don't have love but I'm more moved by the love of the Saints than I am by your love and I'm more impressed by the intellect of the Saints than I am by your inch like I'm not saying you don't have an intro but I'm more impressed if you don't believe me if you think I'm lying then you're just wrong you're just wrong no I don't I don't think you're aware that what you believe is a lot you don't even know why it's a lie that's the sad thing if I could get you to understand why it's a lie how to know for yourself that it's a lie the only value information can have is how accurate you can show it to be so if I walk into a church my family did not take me to church as a child because they failed rather spectacularly the one time they did when I told my mom that you know the guy behind the podium is lying you know you've you've been on this trip for quite a while something you can't possibly know and you're telling me as if you know it I know better there's no way you can know that mom he's lying and then I get slugged in the stomach - shut up cuz you don't question the guy behind the podium yeah yeah you probably have some deep trauma there no I don't have deep trauma okay you probably I know I I would say if I could have used the word blessed I would use it I've had a good life I've never been rich but I've always been happy yeah and things have always been relatively good and I think maybe I just have a positive outlook yeah on things I don't look at in Justices against myself so much as I notice in Justices against other people and that's the ones that bother me and I know so many people in church whose lives are absolutely miserable and they have to suffer through things that I honestly couldn't even endure I've never had to suffer like that like they have yeah are all Catholics equally repugnant to you or do you have a favorite Catholic that you've met or that you've read about in history books as I started out this conversation saying I don't like to specify particular religions much less denominations Christianity and Islam are equal in my view they are both evil they're both lies they're both used as justification for horrible crimes you have no preference I have no preference but when you get into the Christian denominations I can cite travesties by a number of them but I got to admit the Catholicism when you look at the map of just pee evil Catholicism's up there they are the reigning king of the worst of the worst that there can be I mean it's it's hard for me to beg I can try to imagine in my misunderstanding of Muslim religions and there's none of them compare or compete with Catholicism in how dark or evil or malicious they are and have always been since their inception nice cheery message ha ha it is I think thinking epically is the best thing that I can do for people it's the best way to wake people up and I've gotten plenty plenty of positive messages in my inbox from people saying that they would that I have shocked them into thinking I had I had just this year I had somebody that was raised a Christian Islam he's completely dedicated to it and he said that I shocked him out of his faith thank you but I mean I get I get frequent messages like that just not as explicit as this one was nice well I really appreciate it I think you're a nice guy I think you're very boisterous though a little bit rambunctious yeah thank you are you self aware that you're a little bit gruff yeah it might my situation is if I say something is true I had better be able to prove that it is true if I can't prove that it's true that I got no right to say that it's true I the best I can say is well I think so maybe I believe that if I can show this you're then you know there we go but with religion you just say it's like it's true and then you got thirty thousand denominations all conflicting with each other all saying that they have the absolute truth every last one of them is a liar we'll leave it there but thanks so much for taking the time I really do appreciate it and you can do your version of prayer for me and I'll be doing my version of prayer for you okay I don't have a version of prayer man I'm sure you but I'm aware of thanks for taking the time brother I appreciate it my pleasure at the end of my interviews I always ask my guests to give a positive message of hope to the listener you don't know who's listening it might be a Mormon might be Acosta might be an atheist could be anyone what could you say to a random stranger that might be listening now faith is not trust you need two things to turn trust into faith you need a prefix and a suffix faith is a complete trust which is never wise and it is a complete trust that is not based on evidence you should never believe anything without question without reason without reservation and that's what religion requires because it is out to deceive you all you got to do is all you got to do got to do