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socratic
28th April 09, 08:28 AM
You're 2 for 4, and I'm being generous giving you the Crusades. Also, the Catholic church recognizes the inquisitions were wrong and teaches that.

And the witch thing?


Sunn/Shia violence is derived from tribalism as is Israel. They were killing each other before they ever became muslims.

Doesn't tribalism mean along familial/ethnic lines? Maybe those tribes were killing each other before Mohammed, but they got an entirely different reason for killing each other after; the Sunni/Shia thing is mostly religious politics of accession - when Mohammed died the Shiites vouched for his son in law Ali to take the Caliphate [Ali was the fourth Caliph, so that should explain something] and hence their leadership has been derived from Ali's [and thus by extension Mohammed's] lineage [specifically male descendents from the union of Ali and Mohammed's daughter, Fatimah]. These are the Imams. The Shia essentially followed different leaders to the Sunnis throughout history and thus have different outlooks on Islam, at least since the fall of the Ottoman Caliphate- the Shiites still have their leadership and the Sunnis defer to local clergy and Mohammed himself for spiritual guidance. It's like the protestant/Catholic thing only worse.

I'll admit that it could be argued that the biological lineage clause for leadership in Shia could be argued to be construed as tribalistic, but the nature of the whole disagreement, not just the Shia view, is on who leads the umma as spiritual leader, so it's better argued as a matter of religious politics.

By the by, since both Sunnis and Shiites accept converts, I'd be very surprised if all Sunnis and Shiites were from the same specific tribes considering the ethnic spread of Islam...

socratic
28th April 09, 08:39 AM
What's that line again?


Beware of whores who say they don't want money... The hell they don't! What they mean is they want more money. Much more.

No, not that one.


If you're doing business with a religious son of a bitch, get it in writing. His word isn't worth shit, not with the good Lord telling him how to fuck you on the deal.

There we go. Thanks, Will.


Words of advice, for young people...

Spade: The Real Snake
28th April 09, 02:42 PM
Bill Nye was pointing out how Jesus couldn't have turned water into wine by introducing Arm & Hammer to vinegar and playing "Volcano"

socratic
29th April 09, 02:07 AM
Actually, the part where he disproved resurrection by killing mice in front of them was what really got their goat.

Virus
29th April 09, 02:32 AM
Dr Andy Thompson giving a speech on why we believe in gods at the American Atheists 2009 convention.

1iMmvu9eMrg

nihilist
29th April 09, 02:37 AM
http://revver.com/u/GypsyWytch/

Kiko
29th April 09, 04:48 PM
Actually, the part where he disproved resurrection by killing mice in front of them was what really got their goat.

http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_OXfAPPckQU (http://http//www.youtube.com/watch?v=_OXfAPPckQU)

Like that?

Xioxou
30th April 09, 03:26 AM
lunatics
I see wut you did thar!

Cullion
1st May 09, 06:08 PM
The problem with using science to refute the supernatural is that it's illogical to do so when the believer in the supernatural works from the premise that the beings they believe in can suspend and overrule physical law. It doesn't mean that what they believe is true, but it's kind of impenetrable to the kind of reasoning that the guy in the video is trying to do.

Virus
1st May 09, 08:56 PM
He's not really refuting the supernatural, he's offering a model that explains belief in the supernatural.

nihilist
1st May 09, 09:03 PM
He is demonstrating that the Human physiology behind belief is no different whether you believe in Jebus, tree-spirits or the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

It matters not whether bleevers digest or appreciate the evidence. It is food for thinking individuals.

HappyOldGuy
1st May 09, 09:27 PM
He is demonstrating that the Human physiology behind belief is no different whether you believe in Jebus, tree-spirits or the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

It matters not whether bleevers digest or appreciate the evidence. It is food for thinking individuals.
The amusing thing is that you guys think that means you win, when it really means, you've already lost.

"But no, not us. We're rational ubermenschen, not hairless monkeys with nothing but a different set of conditioned reactions to stimuli."


Oh yeah

ESFj4rI6U6g

nihilist
1st May 09, 09:44 PM
The amusing thing is that you guys think that means you win, when it really means, you've already lost.

"But no, not us. We're rational ubermenschen, not hairless monkeys with nothing but a different set of conditioned reactions to stimuli."


Oh yeah

ESFj4rI6U6g

You know what they say about making assumptions.

HappyOldGuy
1st May 09, 10:03 PM
You know what they say about making assumptions.
"HOG, noone likes a guy who is always right."

Luckily I don't care about being liked.

ODR48K6s72k

nihilist
1st May 09, 10:07 PM
You seem to enjoy this little fantasy world you have cocooned yourself into.

HappyOldGuy
1st May 09, 10:17 PM
*yawn*

0u8YvR9eL8Q

nihilist
1st May 09, 10:21 PM
Why don't you try posting macros next?

Cullion
2nd May 09, 04:07 AM
He's not really refuting the supernatural, he's offering a model that explains belief in the supernatural.

Let me explain why despite being an atheist, I don't take the atheist side in these debates.

i) The few religious people here generally refuse to do it, and it's kind of pointless without a debate.

ii) Many Atheists genuinely don't seem to understand why religious belief is so resilient against their attempts at rational persuasion. Dismissing all religious believers as simply ignorant people who haven't yet encountered these arguments is a flawed assumption, largely based on prejudices that grow out of encounters with deeply ignorant red-neck type believers (real or imagined).

There are many, many very highly educated religious people (ever met a Jesuit scholar?), and I think the best way to keep the atheists intellectually honest is to try and present some of the arguments that people like that will produce.

What he's just explained is more like a comforting pep--talk for people who've already come over to Atheism than a useful tool in the drive to stamp out irrational belief that people like Dawkins are engaged in.

iii) People like Dawkins don't seem to understand the irrational foundation of their own beliefs. They don't seem able to see what it is that they themselves take on faith. That's why the arguments they produce are often extemely philosophically naive. Vatican theologians are laughing up their sleeves basically.

iv) Lots and lots of religious people are genuinely no harm to anybody else, and despite their beliefs being based on irrational or 'magical' thinking and childhood conditioning, they are a source of comfort and psychological strength to them.

I do not believe that people like Richard Dawkins' attempts to rip these comforting fantasies away from them are genuinely motivated by compassion for them, nor would they really help them if successful. Richard Dawkins is acting out of self-righteous nerd-rage basically.

Virus
2nd May 09, 06:27 AM
I'd like to disagree with you on a few points, if I may.




i) The few religious people here generally refuse to do it, and it's kind of pointless without a debate.


This is true.



ii) Many Atheists genuinely don't seem to understand why religious belief is so resilient against their attempts at rational persuasion. Dismissing all religious believers as simply ignorant people who haven't yet encountered these arguments is a flawed assumption, largely based on prejudices that grow out of encounters with deeply ignorant red-neck type believers (real or imagined).

I can't speak for my freethinking comrades on the board but I suspect many don't actually subscribe to this view. Personally, I don't. A better explanation for religion is that it's a side effect of essential cognitive mechanisms that evolved to deal with things such as human interactions.




There are many, many very highly educated religious people (ever met a Jesuit scholar?), and I think the best way to keep the atheists intellectually honest is to try and present some of the arguments that people like that will produce.

I'm sorry cullion but when you get right down to it the arguments used by people like Francis Collins or Father George Coyne are no more reasonable than those used by the "god, guns and gays" brigade.



What he's just explained is more like a comforting pep--talk for people who've already come over to Atheism than a useful tool in the drive to stamp out irrational belief that people like Dawkins are engaged in.

Actually this is a new area of psychology and neuroscience and he's explaining the basics of what has been found out. It's not a pep talk at all.



iii) People like Dawkins don't seem to understand the irrational foundation of their own beliefs. They don't seem able to see what it is that they themselves take on faith. That's why the arguments they produce are often extemely philosophically naive. Vatican theologians are laughing up their sleeves basically.

Broadly speaking the foundations used by people like Dawkins lead to accurate predictions so they are better than blind faith. You operate under the assumption that you exist and aren't a brain in a jar. You can't prove that. Therefore you're just as blindly irrational as the Islamic clerics that think god writes books telling them to kill Jews.



iv) Lots and lots of religious people are genuinely no harm to anybody else, and despite their beliefs being based on irrational or 'magical' thinking and childhood conditioning, they are a source of comfort and psychological strength to them.

And there are lots of people that DO pose a threat to others based on magical thinking. We have to ask ourselves if it's really worth giving religion the deferential respect which it doesn't deserve. Competing claims of divine revelation really are tearing some societies apart.



I do not believe that people like Richard Dawkins' attempts to rip these comforting fantasies away from them are genuinely motivated by compassion for them, nor would they really help them if successful. Richard Dawkins is acting out of self-righteous nerd-rage basically.

According to what he says he does it because he sees religion as harmful to society. You're free to make accusations about "self-righteous nerd-rage" but this is purely your assertion and based on nothing.

Virus
2nd May 09, 06:32 AM
There are many, many very highly educated religious people (ever met a Jesuit scholar?), and I think the best way to keep the atheists intellectually honest is to try and present some of the arguments that people like that will produce.


I'm sorry cullion but when you get right down to it the arguments used by people like Francis Collins or Father George Coyne are no more reasonable than those used by the "god, guns and gays" brigade.

I'd just like to add to this point to say that pretty much all of the supposedly sophisticated, moderate and enlightened conceptions of religion are really just an attempt to redefine God into something that can't be criticized. But, if you know of some really awesome argument or conception of theological truth that you think will blow my mind, please present it.

Steve
2nd May 09, 06:42 AM
Virus, what you fail to realize is that it is how you live it, not why you don't.

I believe that there is something besides nothing that makes our existences here a reality. You want to believe that we all turn to dust, that is your own Indiana Jones story.

I'll be the good guy and say that people, humans, are better than animals. You want to classify us as that, go for it. You won't have me being that kind of animal with you.

Virus
2nd May 09, 07:04 AM
Virus, what you fail to realize is that it is how you live it, not why you don't.

I believe that there is something besides nothing that makes our existences here a reality. You want to believe that we all turn to dust, that is your own Indiana Jones story.

I'll be the good guy and say that people, humans, are better than animals. You want to classify us as that, go for it. You won't have me being that kind of animal with you.

Who?

David Koresh Jr.
2nd May 09, 07:08 AM
Yay I live here 9 months out of the year. Good times, I threw apples and called him a heathen.

Virus
2nd May 09, 07:18 AM
I'm not sexist or nothing but I don't think there should have been female Transformers.

David Koresh Jr.
2nd May 09, 07:20 AM
I'm not sexist or nothing but I don't think there should have been female Transformers.

Aren't transformers gender-neutral cause ya know, robots don't have dangly bits.

Virus
2nd May 09, 07:24 AM
With the exception of a set of bollocks, every other attribute they have is male.

David Koresh Jr.
2nd May 09, 07:29 AM
Well then shit just slap Megatron on with a pair of these bad boys.

http://ohmygov.com/blogs/whats-so-funny/truck%20nuts.jpg

Cullion
2nd May 09, 07:41 AM
I'd just like to add to this point to say that pretty much all of the supposedly sophisticated, moderate and enlightened conceptions of religion are really just an attempt to redefine God into something that can't be criticized. But, if you know of some really awesome argument or conception of theological truth that you think will blow my mind, please present it.

No, I really don't believe there's a philosophical argument that would blow your mind and make you become a believer, just as such arguments have failed to convince me.

However, they are much more resilient to atheist lines of reasoning than many atheists realise.

When you talk about God being redefined into something that can't be criticized, that might well be the case.. but it still works for them. And sometimes atheists butt up against it in a way that makes them seem foolish and undermines their own argument.

Let me give a very simplified example:

Believer: I believe that God is capable of transcending not only natural law, but logic itself. Of course my faith in miracles isn't therefore shaken by your description of why they are impossible. Even attempting to accept them as phenomena that were really observed to occur but them explain them in terms of your rationalist framework doesn't work, because I can explain your framework within my belief system.

Atheist: But you know it's impossible that for the Red Sea to have really parted like that, right ?

One of the problems here is massive over-reliance on science.

socratic
2nd May 09, 09:16 AM
The problem you fail to see Cullion is that this sort of magical thinking (god transcends laws) is either, and sometimes both a) born of ignorance and b) one of many points of contradiction in the average human psyche. People have no problem accepting two highly contradictory points on important topics simply by not thinking about them both at once. In the 'educated theist' example you gave, it's the latter; they're perfectly willing to examine philosophy and ideas that generally undermine their own position yet hold steadfast to God anyway.

Saying 'god transcends the laws of nature' simply means you don't understand those laws, because they can't be transcended. They effect everything.

And really, you should know better than to talk of Vatican theologians like they're philosophical sources of merit. The Vatican has been shitting its pants like crazy since people stopped taking God's existence as a fact and started questioning things. Theologians have achieved nothing since the Problem of Evil, because no one has EVER been able to answer it from a theistic perspective in a way that isn't easily overturned or doesn't hold contradictions. Aquinas created five theodices and they're all shit and they're all easily overturned. In fact, I spent all this week researching the problem of evil, and it's hilarious just how fucking terrible theodices really are as an attempt to explain anything. Pretty much any rational debate on the topic of God leads to the conclusion that it's completely impossible to prove; the taleological, ontological and cosmological arguments have criticisms a mile long each and all tend to fall apart under examination.

It's a good point you brought up though, about the fingers-in-the-ears 'God breaks the rules, can't be rationally discussed' response. Hardcore theists are more than willing to be critical of others in rational debate yet refuse to let their thought-systems be a target of it. "God is great, can't be reasoned about, is mysterious, etc" isn't an answer, it's just withdrawing yourself from discourse because you can't answer. This response is an indication of how one fails and refuse to realise it.

I read an interview in Time a while back between Dawkins and another scientist [I forget his name], a rather famous geneticist, who was a rather staunch Christian. The only answer he could give, in the end, to Dawkin's quering was "I think finding increasing evidence that God doesn't exist actually doesn't detract from God's existence; he can break the rules, he works in mysterious ways." The man was very intelligent but couldn't fit his irrational beliefs in with the logical scientific worldview he'd worked so hard to develop, and was clearly perfectly willing to keep the two seperate in his head and was thus unable to move beyond this point. We see this same thing happen in other areas of belief as well- people, for example, who are staunchly supersticious yet know full well that scientific learning laughs in the face of these beliefs. People are just innately willing to hold onto irrational ideations because they're comfortable and they explain things really well until our ability to actually explain things develops. In the end I think a lot of these things are intellectual safety-mechanisms against crushing "I don't know"s and "I don't understand"s. Back when a lot of the world religions came out there was a lot of stuff people didn't understand and dieing happened way more often. Thus "God of the Gaps", etc.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that the problem isn't that atheists rely too much on science [that's a stupid thing to say, by the way. That's like saying you rely too much on the dictionary for new English vocabulary and definitions...] but that theists aren't, deep down, able to reconcile their every-day rational worldview with their mystical one. I don't see the point of laughing at someone for trying to discuss things with intelligence rather than blind faith.

"You know what the problem with you atheists is? You rely too much on empirical fact. You're too right. God isn't right. God isn't fact. I don't need to accept facts and I don't see why I should..."

Cullion
2nd May 09, 09:40 AM
The problem you fail to see Cullion is that this sort of magical thinking (god transcends laws) is either, and sometimes both a) born of ignorance and b) one of many points of contradiction in the average human psyche.

I'm sorry, but you're about to get raped. This is going to feel like somebody is trying to park a greyhound bus in your ass, fucking it up by crashing into the kerb, and reversing angrily for another try, only to fuck it up again. For hours.

You cannot, A priori, assert that God transcending physical law is magica/delusional thinking. You simply can't.

You don't have any logical means of demonstrating that those laws always apply.



People have no problem accepting two highly contradictory points on important topics simply by not thinking about them both at once. In the 'educated theist' example you gave, it's the latter; they're perfectly willing to examine philosophy and ideas that generally undermine their own position yet hold steadfast to God anyway.

No, they really aren't.



Saying 'god transcends the laws of nature' simply means you don't understand those laws, because they can't be transcended. They effect everything.

This is an article of faith that you simply cannot prove. You didn't even realise that, did you ? 'What me, act on faith? no, I'm rational!'

Sorry, you fail it.

I'll tell you what. I've studied formal logic at the postgraduate level. I want you to prove it to me. I'm going to be typing dismissive and mathematically correct retorts with one hand whilst shooting semen into your eyes the whole time though.

socratic
2nd May 09, 10:05 AM
Sorry man, I forgot to take into account that you're completely anal. Here we go: "The natural laws apply to everything we have ever experienced thus far as a universe, in-so-far as we understand the laws; when we don't it's only a matter of time before new laws are discovered that explain these gaps in our knowledge. While I cannot prove 100% that events in the future would continue in this manner it would be insane to contradict this extrapolation because said contradiction is a dead-end philosophy that solves nothing." As much as it makes you sound like a smart philosopher (and there have been a few who posit this view) for saying otherwise, "the natural laws will continue to apply" is actually the one blind assumption any attempt to examine anything must make. Yes, it's a blind assumption, but it's one that's worked and continues to fit any and all new experiences. Why are you even bringing this up? There is no evidence contradicting the continuance of natural laws; there's no reason to suggest otherwise beyond the lack of total certainty, and uncertainty alone doesn't build arguments. Next you'll tell me I can't assume reasonably anyone or anything other than my thinking process exist and you'll think, "gosh I'm clever", for doing it. These are dead end arguments Cullion and are only worthy of being ignored in any discussion.

PS: You still wanna talk about the Vatican's philosophical chops? Because they really don't have any. Those chops got busted a long time ago, bustah.

socratic
2nd May 09, 10:09 AM
PPS: I don't need to assume that God doesn't exist outside of natural law. All I have to do is point out that any assertion that He does is baseless. 1. Nothing has been proven to exist outside of some guiding law or principle (unless you wanna talk quantum, and then it has little rules of its own anyway) 2. Thus the position that anything does this, be it God or a flying spaghetti monster, is bankrupt until evidence is found.

Cullion
2nd May 09, 10:18 AM
Sorry man, I forgot to take into account that you're completely anal.

Never forget, you're attempting to demonstrate that your metaphysical belief system is the correct one because it is completely rational. Unfortunately for you, it isn't. I will now show you why. <uggghhhh>, sorry about that man, here, have a tissue for that. Shall we continue ?



Here we go: "The natural laws apply to everything we have ever experienced thus far as a universe"

Firstly: That doesn't constitute a logical proof. You merely present something which can be disproved by a single exception, but you have not proved a general case in any sense.

Secondly: Your refutation of every claimed eye-witness account of these laws being violated consists of 'But I can explain what you saw with my laws' or 'that can't be true because it seems to be against these laws I believe in. I believe in them because x usually happens'. Sorry, this is not a logical proof, it is an assertion of faith on your part.


While I cannot prove 100% that events in the future would continue in this manner

You're getting it! See above also.


it would be insane to contradict this extrapolation because said contradiction is a dead-end philosophy that solves nothing.

Oh really?

Really ?

Think about this for a second.



As much as it makes you sound like a smart for saying otherwise, "the natural laws will continue to apply" is actually the one blind assumption any attempt to examine anything must make. Yes, it's a blind assumption, but it's one that's worked.

Does it always work ?



Why are you even bringing this up? There is no evidence contradicting the continuance of natural laws.

Yes there is, but you would refute it on the basis that it disagrees with natural laws. You would essentially make a statement of belief in the form of confused circular logic.



Next you'll tell me I can't assume reasonably anyone or anything other than my thinking process exist and you'll think

I won't even do that. I'll simply point out that you've just admitted to working on irrational faith. Why did you choose that irrational faith over another ?

socratic
2nd May 09, 10:29 AM
Political atheist rant here: Religion is a) the greatest tool of oppression there is and b) a thorn in the side of empirical reasoning, the source of everything that makes out societies great, trying to pull it back down into the dark ages.

That's why I side with empiricism. That's why I chose that irrational belief.

And to be precise, I'm not positing a metaphysical system. I'm suggesting there isn't any.

Cullion
2nd May 09, 10:35 AM
Political atheist rant here: Religion is a) the greatest tool of oppression there is

As aside from Stalinism or Nazism or Maoism ? Seriously ?



and b) a thorn in the side of empirical reasoning, the source of everything that makes out societies great, trying to pull it back down into the dark ages.

Empirical reasoning and religion aren't mutually exclusive, as evinced by the massive contribution to scientific knowledge by religious believers.



That's why I side with empiricism. That's why I chose that irrational belief.

But the two reasons you just gave are bullshit. What do you believe now ?



And to be precise, I'm not positing a metaphysical system. I'm suggesting there isn't any.

No you're not. You're proposing that the universe is governed by immutable, mathematically describable, coherent and complete laws whilst admitting you can't prove it. That's a pretty mystical outlook.

Let's put it another way. In what way do you think 'religion' (whatever that is) oppresses you ?

nihilist
2nd May 09, 11:48 AM
FOOLS!
WHAT YOU FAIL TO REALIZE IS:
GOD IS MAGIC!!1!!1111

Cullion
2nd May 09, 12:18 PM
Well, yes.

Cullion
2nd May 09, 12:19 PM
FOOLS!
WHAT YOU FAIL TO REALIZE IS:
MY IRRATIONAL BELIEF SYSTEM IS OK WITH POT AND BUTTSEX, AND THAT'S ALL THE PROOF I NEED!!1!!1111

Cullion
2nd May 09, 01:29 PM
That's not the point.

Cullion
2nd May 09, 01:39 PM
Now, let's discuss why reported phenomena which clearly violate models resting on empirical observation aren't necessarily lies.

Socratic, you've already accepted the following:-

i) You can't actually prove that the universe is ordered by complete, consistent and immutable, impersonal mathematically describable laws.

ii) However, you've chosen this belief system, and cited some reasons which aren't actually true. You'll accept this mistake and find some new examples. But the point is that this God stuff just has to be wrong, umm.. right?

so:-

iii) In order to defend attacks on these numinous immutable laws you place faith in, you'd argue that purported eyewitness accounts of them being violated were simply lies, mistakes, or the result of mental illness until mathematical descriptions which predict repeated experimental results, which also encompass previous observations are created. Would this be correct ?

Cullion
2nd May 09, 02:00 PM
It's a sin for you to tickle, but not for you to be tickled.

You realise this is all about me trying to start a new religion based on logic, buttsex and morning PT? Good, then we're on the same page.

Here endeth the lesson.

HappyOldGuy
2nd May 09, 02:06 PM
God told me to work out after work.

lCcny7gosYA

Cullion
2nd May 09, 02:07 PM
God's told you to do a lot of things, but you only picked the one that would help you pick up 20-something PAs.

Smart guy.

Cullion
2nd May 09, 02:08 PM
I wanted to rep you for liking the DKs but the system wouldn't let me. I really am not that culturally different from you, I'm just anal about having my money taken away and wasted by bureaucrats.

nihilist
2nd May 09, 06:10 PM
The concept of God is just that.

socratic
2nd May 09, 08:02 PM
As aside from Stalinism or Nazism or Maoism ? Seriously ?

The Vatican is still a nation, and a goddamn rich one at that, run by an autocrat. Maoism/Stalinism/Nazism are all just ideations of fascist autocracy and none of them have lasted as long or have the same kind of scope religious thought systems have. Looking back through history, feudalism and serfdom existed only because the Church justified it as God's will. Take a look at the Hindu caste system that's still oppressing people right now.


Empirical reasoning and religion aren't mutually exclusive, as evinced by the massive contribution to scientific knowledge by religious believers.

I'd suggest that empiricism and religious experience are mutually exclusive because they run on entirely different MOs. "God said so, period" and "God told me, when I was all alone and no one else was around, that blah blah blah" isn't exactly a good foundation for any sort of scientific breakthrough. I think it'd be better said that religious believers have contributed to scientific knowledge despite their religion and not because of it; especially the parts where you have to either accept your religious teaching or the scientific worldview , such as genetics, biology, archaelogy, chemistry, physics, etc. I think it'd be more or less imposible to find a science that doesn't completely contradict any religious text or decree.


No you're not. You're proposing that the universe is governed by immutable, mathematically describable, coherent and complete laws whilst admitting you can't prove it. That's a pretty mystical outlook.

It's not a metaphysical outlook because the natural laws are observed and described in relation to, and function in a relation to physical phenomena. I'm not talking about anything that exists outside of this observable universe or can't be proven empirically.


Let's put it another way. In what way do you think 'religion' (whatever that is) oppresses you ?

Theist organisations have a sweet deal when it comes to taxes, unfair laws [such as limiting freedom of speech] are passed explicitly because the Pope visits, religious thought is pretty much the sole contention against same-sex marriage, abortion and stem cell research, theists killed my countrymen in Bali and 9/11, theists continue to kill my countrymen in Iraq and Afghanistan [though admittedly no-where near as much as they're killing Americans, and each other], Islamic fundamentalists, who are a noted minority, seem to be really keen about getting shariah law brought in around here and really seem to dislike the whole 'women have rights' thing... They're treating your people much worse, Cullion. How many times have Mujahadeen blown up your people now?


Now, let's discuss why reported phenomena which clearly violate models resting on empirical observation aren't necessarily lies.
Not all of it is lies. I think a lot of the ones where they say "I met God. When I was all alone. None of you can meet God. God says I should be your leader and you should follow these rules that I shall tell you." are lies. I think a lot of them have to do with your brain not working normally.


i) You can't actually prove that the universe is ordered by complete, consistent and immutable, impersonal mathematically describable laws.
Yeah, but no other belief-system has any more evidence for it, and their implications tend to be shit in a social sense, so I think I'll just stick with my guns.


But the point is that this God stuff just has to be wrong, umm.. right?The God stuff is wrong because it can't be proven to be right (lol, philosophical arguments for God are ludicrously easy to disprove) and 99% of religious experience can be more easily and [B]better explained (lol, occam's razor) by mundane phenomena.


In order to defend attacks on these numinous immutable laws you place faith in, you'd argue that purported eyewitness accounts of them being violated were simply lies, mistakes, or the result of mental illness until mathematical descriptions which predict repeated experimental results, which also encompass previous observations are created. Would this be correct ?
I realise you're trying to lead me somewhere with this, but yeah, this is correct.

Here's two major bones of contention with religious experience: 1. They're all different depending on your faith [for every 'I met God' there's twenty 'I met Krishna's]. There is absolutely no unifying principle within religious phenomena beyond said phenomena not being normal events. 2. They generally aren't repeatable, at least not without narcotics. I'm yet to hear a good response to "Please present this God you keep talking about. He's omniopent so he can hear us and is very easily capable of manifesting physically. Where is he? Can you point him out?" The common response is "I can feel him/his presence/his love all around me and/or within me" which is refuted simply with "I can't."

nihilist
2nd May 09, 08:12 PM
Q: How do you know when you are experiencing God?

A: You can feel it.

socratic
2nd May 09, 09:30 PM
Q: How do you know when you are experiencing God?

A: You can feel it.

Does God feel you up often? Randy old bastard that he is!

nihilist
2nd May 09, 09:39 PM
I said experience, not sexperience.

socratic
2nd May 09, 11:07 PM
I said experience, not sexperience.

They made you get down on your knees and please Jesus, didn't they? I bet Jesus shot his warm, sticky redemption all over your face.

f4n4n
2nd May 09, 11:42 PM
you mean like this?

gr3CmqMXB1M

I guess so :wink:

nihilist
2nd May 09, 11:59 PM
They made you get down on your knees and please Jesus, didn't they? I bet Jesus shot his warm, sticky redemption all over your face.

Sounds like you want to spend some time in the seminary.

DAYoung
3rd May 09, 12:08 AM
"People make the mistake of talking about 'natural laws'. There are no natural laws. There are only temporary habits of nature..." (A.N. Whitehead, quoted in Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead)

nihilist
3rd May 09, 12:16 AM
The human race hasn't been around long enough to judge what is or is not temporary.

DAYoung
3rd May 09, 12:25 AM
I don't think it's an empirical claim of that sort.

(That is: just waiting long enough.)

It's a metaphysical statement, informed by science and logic.

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 12:29 AM
g3YRavztTQo

nihilist
3rd May 09, 12:36 AM
Shouldn't you be out campaigning to keep fags from getting hitched?

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 12:38 AM
Shouldn't you be out campaigning to keep fags from getting hitched?

Me?

Virus
3rd May 09, 12:39 AM
Sounds like you want to spend some time in the seminary.

With the rector.

Virus
3rd May 09, 12:41 AM
Shouldn't you be out campaigning to keep fags from getting hitched?

HOG's not religious. He just thinks it's good for keeping the servants in line.

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 12:46 AM
HOG's not religious. He just thinks it's good for keeping the servants in line.

Nope. He just knows it's unavoidable.


Reese. Your life will be deeply enriched if you go ahead and play the videos I am so carefully chosing to educate you.

nihilist
3rd May 09, 12:51 AM
HOG's not religious. He just thinks it's good for keeping the servants in line.

The KKK has a nice little pecking order. So does Neo-Naziism, Al-Qaeda, Scientology, and every church advising people how to vote to keep minorities from having equal rights and how nothing in the distant future really matters that much since we are in The End Of Days.

nihilist
3rd May 09, 12:53 AM
Reese. Your life will be deeply enriched if you go ahead and play the videos I am so carefully chosing to educate you.

Go suck an egg.

My life will be deeply enriched if you die in a horrible and ironic domestic terrorist attack.

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 12:54 AM
Pussy.

nihilist
3rd May 09, 12:57 AM
If you have something relevant to say you already missed your chance.

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 01:00 AM
You have the intellectual depth of toilet paper. Anything I say to you will be useless for any purpose other than scrubbing shit out of assholes.

Try harder.

Vxw1_eb9ATE

bob
3rd May 09, 01:03 AM
Nope. He just knows it's unavoidable.




On the whole I find it pretty avoidable. Apart from reading these threads but I do that out of anthropological curiousity.

nihilist
3rd May 09, 01:20 AM
You have the intellectual depth of toilet paper. Anything I say to you will be useless for any purpose other than scrubbing shit out of assholes.

Try harder.

Vxw1_eb9ATE If this were a debate you would lose points for that.

Please act like an adult. If not for me, at least act as though you have some respect for the other members of the board.

Now, please stop posting youtube music videos that no one cares about and act your age. I'm sure you can summon up some sort of lucid thoughts that do not consist of ad-hominem and sour grapes.

Aphid Jones
3rd May 09, 02:03 AM
Looking back through history, feudalism and serfdom existed only because the Church justified it as God's will.
Really? You really think that's the only reason? You think that was the most powerful reason?


Really?

Virus
3rd May 09, 04:40 AM
_FcbMh49GmQ

Cullion
3rd May 09, 05:41 AM
The Vatican is still a nation, and a goddamn rich one at that, run by an autocrat.

Your point being ?



Maoism/Stalinism/Nazism are all just ideations of fascist autocracy and none of them have lasted as long or have the same kind of scope religious thought systems have.

That's precisely because they were so brutal and inhuman.



Looking back through history, feudalism and serfdom existed only because the Church justified it as God's will. Take a look at the Hindu caste system that's still oppressing people right now.

You really think these things are as brutal or inhuman as the unstable atheistic systems above ? Don't be ridiculous.



I'd suggest that empiricism and religious experience are mutually exclusive because they run on entirely different MOs.

What you suggest is not born out by real history. You are simply making shit up at this point to try and fit your narrow, broken and ignorant world-view.



I think it'd be better said that religious believers have contributed to scientific knowledge despite their religion and not because of it; especially the parts where you have to either accept your religious teaching or the scientific worldview , such as genetics, biology, archaelogy, chemistry, physics, etc. I think it'd be more or less imposible to find a science that doesn't completely contradict any religious text or decree.

That's because you know as little about science as you do about religion.



It's not a metaphysical outlook because the natural laws are observed and described in relation to, and function in a relation to physical phenomena. I'm not talking about anything that exists outside of this observable universe or can't be proven empirically.

Yes you are, you believe there exists a coherent and complete set of mathematical codices which describe everything in the universe, and you know you cannot prove it. It would never be possible to prove this to be true through empiricism. You have an unprovable faith in a universe which is a mathematically describable machine. Hereafter, I will refer to this as 'The Invisible Machine God'.



Theist organisations have a sweet deal when it comes to taxes

So do other charities, I fail to see your point.



, unfair laws [such as limiting freedom of speech] are passed explicitly because the Pope visits

I'm just going to throw Maoist China in your face here.


religious thought is pretty much the sole contention against same-sex marriage, abortion and stem cell research

Are you talking about the thought of a particular religion, or all religion ?


theists killed my countrymen in Bali and 9/11

Theists have also saved your countrymen.


theists continue to kill my countrymen in Iraq and Afghanistan [though admittedly no-where near as much as they're killing Americans, and each other]

Nowhere near as much as they're killing Brits either. The Ba'athists in Iraq weren't acting out of religious devotion, and to be honest the Afghans wouldn't have posed much threat to Australians or Brits either had we not invaded their country.


Islamic fundamentalists, who are a noted minority, seem to be really keen about getting shariah law brought in around here and really seem to dislike the whole 'women have rights' thing... They're treating your people much worse, Cullion. How many times have Mujahadeen blown up your people now?

I fail to see your point. We had a lot of people killed by Nazis too, and have recently emerged from a decades-long standby for invasion by the 3rd Shock Army of the Soviet Union.



Not all of it is lies. I think a lot of the ones where they say "I met God. When I was all alone. None of you can meet God. God says I should be your leader and you should follow these rules that I shall tell you." are lies. I think a lot of them have to do with your brain not working normally.

That's an article of your faith.



Yeah, but no other belief-system has any more evidence for it, and their implications tend to be shit in a social sense, so I think I'll just stick with my guns.

You don't have any evidence for your belief system, and you don't seem to have a cogent point when it comes to the 'social sense'.



The God stuff is wrong because it can't be proven to be right (lol, philosophical arguments for God are ludicrously easy to disprove) and 99% of religious experience can be more easily and [B]better explained (lol, occam's razor) by mundane phenomena.

Your god is a large invisible machine which you can't prove the existence of. You've chosen this one because you want to abortion to be legal and it's very important to you that faggots are allowed to register their boyfriends for tax reasons. There are other religions that would allow this too, but you're sticking with the invisible machine God.



Here's two major bones of contention with religious experience: 1. They're all different depending on your faith [for every 'I met God' there's twenty 'I met Krishna's]. There is absolutely no unifying principle within religious phenomena beyond said phenomena not being normal events.

What's with this mystical belief in unifying principles and consistency ?

Why do you believe that the universe needs such things? This invisible machine god of yours certainly sounds intolerant.


The common response is "I can feel him/his presence/his love all around me and/or within me" which is refuted simply with "I can't."

Blind people can't see rainbows.

Spade: The Real Snake
3rd May 09, 10:45 AM
Just a reminder, THIS:

http://i42.tinypic.com/23wla9e.jpg
Is what has spurned forth this discussion.

Cullion
3rd May 09, 10:51 AM
See, he's wearing a robe.

This invisible machine god cult needs to be stopped, before they start claiming that society can be re-ordered into a more rational form.

Oops.

http://img115.imageshack.us/img115/1882/stalinslegacylh8.jpg

Cullion
3rd May 09, 10:57 AM
Man, I can't believe that I argued in favour of subjective spiritual experience with 'blind people can't see rainbows'. I just love myself sometimes. Love myself.

Cullion
3rd May 09, 11:03 AM
More brutal manifestations of fanatical belief in the Invisible Machine God.

Did you know that the French Revolutionaries renamed Notre Dame to 'The Temple of Reason' ?

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8b/Temple_of_Reason_Strasbourg_1793-1794.jpg

http://www.solarnavigator.net/history/explorers_history/French_Revolution_Louis_XVI_Execution.jpg

Be careful though, the Invisible Machine God is a treachorous master. When it manifests through instruments of destruction (apparently always necessary for the rational re-ordering of human society) it often turns on its servants.

This invisible machine god's appetite for blood and souls is insatiable.

Cullion
3rd May 09, 11:07 AM
Look, I'm not saying that you shouldn't let same-sex couples enjoy the same kind of legal and financial status as hetereo couples, but let's not get carried away here.

Zealous and intolerant Atheism is a religion founded on faith.

And often a pretty brutal one.

You say you have no metaphysical belief system, but you did all along and I've just shown it to you. You just believed in it so strongly that you actually confused it with the one true and objective reality. Be careful now. You've confused empiricism with proof, all the while claiming that only followers of your faith have the true empiricism, which historically speaking, is absurd.

You're in the embrace of the Invisible Machine God, just step away old boy. Just step away. I really hope it's not too late for Virus and poor old Dawkins.

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 11:55 AM
On the whole I find it pretty avoidable.
No. You are just smugly certain of the rational foundations of your particular faith.

And you're wrong.

eYCnL_qVl-E

nihilist
3rd May 09, 12:11 PM
Since it's kindergarten playtime:

HIxzSmZWgWY&NR=1

Virus
3rd May 09, 03:57 PM
Cullion you're using the terms "god" and "religion" where they don't belong.

Did the Reign of Terror happen because people were too skeptical that god writes books, talks to people and impregnates virgins?

bob
3rd May 09, 04:04 PM
No. You are just smugly certain of the rational foundations of your particular faith.

And you're wrong.


And what faith is that, pray tell?

Cullion
3rd May 09, 04:25 PM
Cullion you're using the terms "god" and "religion" where they don't belong.

I'm not, I'm really not. Go back to my argument and read it with an open mind.

That 'invisible machine god' term I use sounds jokey, but it accurately describes what socratic expressed as his beliefs. He made all these metaphysical assertions about how he believes the universe works which he holds despite knowing he can't prove them. It had never even occurred to him before that they were articles of faith quite divorced from observational empiricism, which many, many religious believers and mystics have also practiced.

Pretty much every major contributor to scientific knowledge before Darwin held religious beliefs, they just didn't conceive their godhead as an invisible machine describable by a totally consistent and immutable set of mathematical laws.

He even went as far to make the statement that the universe must work according to discoverable and consistent laws. He appears never to have stopped and asked himself why must that be the case. It's a highly evolved hardline 'rationalist' article of faith which is quite unprovable and humorously close to the declaration 'thou shalt have no god other than me'.

It's not provable, it might not be true, and he just accepted it all along as if that was the way things had to be.

He quite simply didn't realise that he had metaphysical or mystical beliefs, he thought that what he had was the absence of them. But it's not the case, and I hope now that he, and you, can see it.

What you're really espousing isn't 'science' per se, it's a form of modernism which usually comes packaged with a range of metaphysical beliefs and cultural and political connotations. That's not the same as saying they are wrong, but please, step back and acknowledge they exist.

I wish DAYoung was here, he'd explain it better than me.



Did the Reign of Terror happen because people were too skeptical that god writes books, talks to people and impregnates virgins?

Only in the same way that the crusades were caused by people believing that Christ was the Prince of Peace. Beliefs held by humans can always be expressed in a bright or a dark way. Just step back and examine your own.
Maybe other people's will piss you off a bit less then.

HappyOldGuy
3rd May 09, 05:17 PM
And what faith is that, pray tell?
Don't know, don't care, doesn't matter.

The neuropsychology of belief doesn't change just because you chose to call your deity something silly like 'reason' or 'science'.

FEgSKLq5yDU

Cullion
3rd May 09, 05:28 PM
And what faith is that, pray tell?

The cult of the Invisble Machine God.

Quikfeet509
3rd May 09, 09:52 PM
Just because we can't absolutely know for certain if there is a god fails to make both camps equally plausible.


I can't know for certain if my proper utilization of an ACLS algorithm saved a patient's life or if it was god's will, but suggesting that both possibilities are equally valid is a naive oversimplification.





Or something.

Cullion
3rd May 09, 10:14 PM
Where do you get the idea that there are only two camps, and why do you think the hardcore political atheists don't have a religion ?

They do you see. They've already described it, they just didn't realise that's what it was.

bob
3rd May 09, 10:17 PM
lol.

You guys almost had me there for a minute.

socratic
3rd May 09, 10:27 PM
Care for some koolaid?

Cullion
3rd May 09, 10:30 PM
lol.

You guys almost had me there for a minute.

Just for a second, imagine that I wasn't trolling you.

What would your response to the 'Invisible Machine God' assertion be then?

Virus
4th May 09, 12:31 AM
The assumptions made by those who take the naturalistic worldview are "bare bones" assumptions based on how the universe appears to operate. That is, occrding to laws, that can be described and interpreted by the human brain.

When you take the unprovable assumption that you aren't a brain in a jar and that you actually exist in a universe that operates mechanisticly (at least to some degree) and that physical constants such as the mass of a proton doesn't change from day to day, there isn't really a whole lot of things that flow from that which can't be verified to some degree.

As one Kantian philosopher put it, when you believe in God, you can believe in anything. You can throw the virgin births, the ressurections, the magic healing powers, the talking snakes and the people living in whales into the mix becuase you already accept an omnipotent space wizard who's inexplicable magic powers allow for anything.

It might even still be possible to conduect science if the laws of nature changed from day to day. We havn't found any evidence that they do but if they did then that would just be incoperated into a new paradigm. We can't "proove" our assumptions about living in a mechanistic universe becuase science doesn't deal in proof, but likeyhood or probabilities. We can attatch a high degree of likelyhood that they do becuase all of our observations about the universe seem to indicate that and we don't need to bring in hyper-complex entities in order to make the model work.

nihilist
4th May 09, 12:49 AM
The fact that scientific methods could be flawed or subject to erroneous foundation or interpretation does not make belief in pure conjecture any more compelling. Nor should it (in my opinion) be given equal merit.

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 01:15 AM
I still can't believe that Nazis are still lumped in with atheists. Whatever you think individual Nazis may have believed, the party strongly espoused "positive Christianity".

nihilist
4th May 09, 01:17 AM
My problems with religion are solely based on the facet of it which promotes the perpetuation of ignorance.

socratic
4th May 09, 01:40 AM
My problems with religion are solely based on the facet of it which promotes the perpetuation of ignorance.

Like the one this thread was started to discuss.

Huh, funny that.

nihilist
4th May 09, 01:43 AM
Like Cullion said, There aren't any religious fundies around to argue with so we tend to attack each other out of boredom.

Cullion
4th May 09, 12:05 PM
The assumptions made by those who take the naturalistic worldview are "bare bones" assumptions based on how the universe appears to operate. That is, occrding to laws, that can be described and interpreted by the human brain.

Well, not quite. There is generally an assumption made that somebody reporting an experience which violates those laws and can't be repeated in experiment, is lying or deluded.

Now, just for a second, discount probabilities and think about pure provability.
You can see that it could be the case that the cult of the invisible machine god simply defends its faith by making up pseudo-scientific psychological explanations why they don't have to listen to these accounts.



When you take the unprovable assumption that you aren't a brain in a jar and that you actually exist in a universe that operates mechanisticly (at least to some degree) and that physical constants such as the mass of a proton doesn't change from day to day, there isn't really a whole lot of things that flow from that which can't be verified to some degree.

The reason why this doesn't stop this being metaphysical, is it doesn't constitute proof, in a rigorous philosophical sense. The faith here is that



As one Kantian philosopher put it, when you believe in God, you can believe in anything.

Well no. It depends on the a priori assumptions of your particular religion.



You can throw the virgin births, the ressurections, the magic healing powers, the talking snakes and the people living in whales into the mix becuase you already accept an omnipotent space wizard who's inexplicable magic powers allow for anything.

The invisible machine god can allow for these things to, it's simply a case of explaining them in a way which fits into the metaphysics of the invisible god cult.



It might even still be possible to conduect science if the laws of nature changed from day to day. We havn't found any evidence that they do but if they did then that would just be incoperated into a new paradigm.

The belief in an overarching paradigm which has objective existence is a mystical belief.



We can't "proove" our assumptions about living in a mechanistic universe becuase science doesn't deal in proof, but likeyhood or probabilities.

The scientific method itself is not really a metaphysical system in the way that Rationalism with a capital R is.

Let me try and explain. In that very good video you posted, you remember where the psychiatrist was describing the mechanisms that make humans impute order and meaning without evidence, he gave an example of the optical illusion where you see circles with chunks cut out of them, and your visual cognitive centres kind of infer that there's a square or triangle there ?

The experimental method is direct perception.

The metaphysical, mystical ideas about the consistent universe where all that is not consistent with the discoverable, mechanistic, mathematically describable godhead you believe in, are the bit where your brain infers a square.

And it's damn convincing!

But without true logical proof, is it true ?



We can attatch a high degree of likelyhood that they do becuase all of our observations about the universe seem to indicate that and we don't need to bring in hyper-complex entities in order to make the model work.

But you've got a hyper complex entity in your model. An enormous set of unchanging mathematical codices that are consistent and which you have faith can be discovered, otherwise known as the 'invisible machine god'.

We might live in a somehow simpler, although less comforting and certain universe.

Cullion
4th May 09, 12:12 PM
Like Cullion said, There aren't any religious fundies around to argue with so we tend to attack each other out of boredom.

Yeah. Do you think we ought to plan some kind of forum invasion for lulz?

Cullion
4th May 09, 12:15 PM
My problems with religion are solely based on the facet of it which promotes the perpetuation of ignorance.

Do you see some beautiful and worthy things there too though? I do, and I speak as an agnostic who thinks atheists are very probably right.

HappyOldGuy
4th May 09, 12:15 PM
Like Cullion said, There aren't any religious fundies around to argue with so we tend to attack each other out of boredom.
I'm motivated by pure malice.

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 12:26 PM
And an unnatural love of music videos.

KhorneliusPraxx
4th May 09, 12:27 PM
_FcbMh49GmQ
You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Virus again.

HappyOldGuy
4th May 09, 12:33 PM
And an unnatural love of music videos.

Thanks, almost forgot.

odTNzTP0pUY

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 12:38 PM
Yeah. Do you think we ought to plan some kind of forum invasion for lulz?


If you do, this is a good place to start. (http://www.fundamentalforums.com)

Antifa
4th May 09, 12:42 PM
If you do, this is a good place to start. (http://www.fundamentalforums.com)

me thinks we will get beaten by the ban stick quite harshly


but so what

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 01:08 PM
I've been banned there a couple times for messing around, but I'd love to see a full on invasion.

Zendetta
4th May 09, 01:43 PM
What a beautiful thread - HOG and Cullion join forces to brilliantly defend a religious viewpoint that they don't even believe in!!!

The Lion has lain down with the Lamb, and its a peacable kingdom.

Cullion
4th May 09, 02:45 PM
It's not that dramatic. HoG and I seem to substantially agree about cuisine too, and that's much more important.

Now, as far as this forum invasion goes, we need to move detailed planning to the Psychoanal club, agreed ?

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 02:50 PM
Now, as far as this forum invasion goes, we need to move detailed planning to the Psychoanal club, agreed ?

I'm down.

HappyOldGuy
4th May 09, 02:55 PM
It's not that dramatic. HoG and I seem to substantially agree about cuisine too, and that's much more important.
And we have very similar taste in women.

Which may wind up getting one of us killed.

M3CR0faCExw

Antifa
4th May 09, 03:10 PM
I'm down.

stub a thread please

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 03:19 PM
Makin one now

Zendetta
4th May 09, 03:25 PM
It's not that dramatic. HoG and I seem to substantially agree about cuisine too, and that's much more important.

We're not so different, you and I....

... and of course you are not arguing a "religious" viewpoint at all, anyway. You are both speaking up on behalf of the intelligent agnosticism that separates teh R34L SC13NC3 from dogmatic materialism.

Props to the both of you.

(now get a room!)

bob
4th May 09, 03:31 PM
Just for a second, imagine that I wasn't trolling you.

What would your response to the 'Invisible Machine God' assertion be then?

I would say that the neuroscience of belief is a fascinating and complex field. There are some evolutionary parallels in the neural processes involved in abstract and creative thought and those involved in religious belief. To say that those things are the same or that 'science that you dont' directly understand' is essentially analogous to 'religion' is a misrepresentation of the literature that I have read.

TheLordHumungus
4th May 09, 03:36 PM
There. It is done.

Cullion
4th May 09, 03:55 PM
I would say that the neuroscience of belief is a fascinating and complex field. There are some evolutionary parallels in the neural processes involved in abstract and creative thought and those involved in religious belief. To say that those things are the same or that 'science that you dont' directly understand' is essentially analogous to 'religion' is a misrepresentation of the literature that I have read.

Ah, here's where you skip a beat.

The invisble machine god isn't to be found in 'science that is yet to be discovered'

The invisible machine god is to be found in the irrational belief that 'science, alone, is one day capable of explaining everything in a consistent and coherent manner'

bob
4th May 09, 04:16 PM
Ah, here's where you skip a beat.

The invisble machine god isn't to be found in 'science that is yet to be discovered'

The invisible machine god is to be found in the irrational belief that 'science, alone, is one day capable of explaining everything in a consistent and coherent manner'

Explaining to who? That's the point. To some people science can't even adequately explain much of what can, supposedly already be explained, either through an incomprehension or a different world view. Ask 100 different people what science can explain now and you'll get vastly different answers.

To call someone irrational for believing that statement is, in fact, the exact opposite of what they are. They are hyper-rational, to the extent that some people might consider pathological but to others it's just a fairly logical extrapolation based on the vastly increased ability of science to explain things in the past few hundred years.

Virus
4th May 09, 04:49 PM
Cullion, everything that you've been saying about all ideas being equally irrational is itself not provable and henceforth blind faith. Therefore you are just as bad as Hamas.

Cullion
4th May 09, 04:57 PM
I just punched you in the soul. Did you feelz it ?

nihilist
4th May 09, 07:13 PM
Terrorist.

socratic
5th May 09, 02:33 AM
Nazi terrorist.

EuropIan
5th May 09, 02:42 AM
This thread is why I have sciolism in my religion field.

nihilist
5th May 09, 02:50 AM
I would hate people a lot less if they just admitted that they don't know shit.

EuropIan
5th May 09, 02:56 AM
I mean, this shit is important, it's just not that important.

nihilist
5th May 09, 03:00 AM
On that note...

9dNM-oVNYe0

Kein Haar
5th May 09, 11:46 AM
http://harryallen.info/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/garbagefailkids_card_rihanna.jpg

Quikfeet509
5th May 09, 01:27 PM
The invisible machine god is to be found in the irrational belief that 'science, alone, is one day capable of explaining everything in a consistent and coherent manner'


Hmm...


The idea that science will be able to someday explain everything is more plausible than the idea that someday faith will.


Yes, I love forced dichotomies.

Virus
5th May 09, 08:10 PM
You can add this to the "fucknuttery caused by religion" file:

mjMRgT5o-Ig

nihilist
5th May 09, 08:52 PM
WW3 is just around the corner thanks to the pro-religion assholes.

EuropIan
5th May 09, 09:31 PM
Don't they need an atheist anti-christ?

Is that who they're hoping Obama is?

nihilist
5th May 09, 11:00 PM
Dude, He's a MOSLEM !

socratic
5th May 09, 11:26 PM
Don't they need an atheist anti-christ?

Is that who they're hoping Obama is?

Scripture says the anti-christ will be someone very well versed in the ways of the religion, enough to fool others into thinking he's the real messianic deal. At least, that's my recollection. Could be wrong.


Dude, He's a MOSLEM !

Archaic spelling, nice.

EuropIan
6th May 09, 03:05 AM
Scripture says the anti-christ will be someone very well versed in the ways of the religion, enough to fool others into thinking he's the real messianic deal. At least, that's my recollection. Could be wrong.


wouldn't that imply that Obama got the fundie vote?

nihilist
6th May 09, 03:15 AM
Most Christians only cherry pick the parts of scripture that suit them anyway.

Steve
6th May 09, 03:17 AM
Maybe we should ask them why Superman still has his powers at night.

EuropIan
6th May 09, 03:21 AM
Maybe we should ask them why Superman still has his powers at night.
what would Christians know of a Jewish superhero.

Steve
6th May 09, 04:24 AM
He is the American Way!?!?

Virus
6th May 09, 05:31 AM
what would Christians know of a Jewish superhero.

As if they'd care about some fictional character with super powers.

socratic
6th May 09, 05:57 AM
what would Christians know of a Jewish superhero.

Superman ain't shit:http://www.bangitout.com/uploads/18hebrew_hammer.jpg

Spade: The Real Snake
6th May 09, 10:33 AM
Dude, He's a MOSLEM !

I thought that was like the Israeli Special Forces of Clay Monsters.

TheLordHumungus
6th May 09, 11:58 AM
As if they'd care about some fictional character with super powers.

"For Jor-El so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever needeth him should not perish, but have a longer happier life. For Jor-El sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved...And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil...But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest."

Virus
7th May 09, 09:39 AM
Superman ain't shit:http://www.bangitout.com/uploads/18hebrew_hammer.jpg

I hear that movie didn't do so well in Saudi Arabia.

DAYoung
9th May 09, 04:41 PM
Having skimmed his posts in a very Sunday morning way, I agree with Cullion.

Scientism (i.e. the dogma of science) very quickly labels beliefs 'metaphysics', i.e. beliefs outside the realm of proof. But scientists all work with a metaphysics, i.e. a sometimes-vague, unarticulated metaphor about 'what is'.

This metaphor guides the scientific enterprise in individuals and groups, and is often self-confirming. Radical shifts occur in science when someone invents/discovers a new one.

Yes, I'm channeling Kuhn.

Now, THIS IS THE IMPORTANT BIT: thus far, the metaphors guiding science, while limited or clumsy philosophically-speaking (e.g. life as machine, being as atoms), have been the most successful in predicting and controlling the natural world.

Put another way: to say that a person, group or institution is guided by a fundamental metaphor isn't to say they're wrong, or that all metaphors are equal. It's just recognition that humans have implicit, vague, almost-literary outlooks to go with their explicit, precise, mathematical ones.

Cullion
9th May 09, 04:53 PM
Is 'scientism' the real, or at least widely used, term for what I was calling the 'invisible machine god' when I was dicking around?

theotherserge
9th May 09, 05:07 PM
I've always loved looking at these methaphorical trends. Seeing how our technological innovations mirror our understanding, and the limits therein, is very revealing.

A friend from high school went on to really, really specialized biological engineering. Last I talked to him, he was working on computer modelling a flatworm. The notion was this is the organism with the simplist CNS and this is where the next wave of Artifical Intelligence was trending: start at the bottom.

They were getting nowhere because of all that "metaphysical stuff". Like, why is this stupic thing alive in the first place? I also laughed when I said it'd be cool to figure out how to computer model nerve pulses, that might lead to parapalegics walking again and cool shit.

"Oh Jesus no!" he said, "that is way too optimistic! I hadn't even considered that!"

DAYoung
9th May 09, 05:55 PM
Is 'scientism' the real, or at least widely used, term for what I was calling the 'invisible machine god' when I was dicking around?

I see it as the science equivalent of 'islamicist' for Islam. It's the dogmatic, narrow, fundamentalism (i.e. reductionist) version.

So, it's something like the 'invisible machine god', but not always.

Having said this, the invisble machine god is very close to some Enlightenment/19thC ideas, e.g. the book of the universe written in the divine language of numbers (Galileo), all the cosmos predictable for all time (Laplace).

HappyOldGuy
9th May 09, 08:20 PM
To me the problem comes from people who think that all human needs can be met by a technique that can only answer falsifiable questions about the material world.

It's self evidently silly, but the incredible success at manipulating the material world seems to blind some people to the basic limits of what the scientific approach can achieve.

Obligatory

2IlHgbOWj4o

DAYoung
9th May 09, 08:24 PM
Well, science has been extraordinarily successful.

But, as you say...

Cullion
9th May 09, 08:36 PM
I think what I've been trying to say is that the scientific method, and the body of knowledge acquired by it, and Scientism aren't the same thing.

Scientism is the metaphysical, fundamentally unscientific phantasm the pattern-matching part of your brain conjures up if you allow it to. It's fundamentally irrational. It's no accident that it tends to comes packaged with a bunch of quasi-reductionist, modernist political and cultural assumptions too.

I say quasi-reductionist, because people aren't exactly reducing. They're expanding beyond what has been acquired or proven by actual science, to fit an irrational metaphysic, which they are usually in denial of the very existence of. It's quite delightfully insane.

And if it was necessary to hold faith in Scientism for advances in scientific knowledge, then people like Isaac Newton wouldn't have made any discoveries. That mad old coot spent years deciphering qabbalistically encoded messages in the Bible to try and find out when the end of the world would come.

I think I'm going to go back to calling it the Cult of the Invisible Machine God, because it tickles my inner jerk.

DAYoung
10th May 09, 01:23 AM
Sounds fine to me.

Especially the tickling bit.

nihilist
10th May 09, 01:36 AM
The word "God" gets thrown around apriori so much it has about as much meaning as when Anna Nicole Smith referred to Kanye West as a "freakin' genius".

DAYoung
10th May 09, 01:51 AM
Not just a genius - a freakin' one.

Ajamil
10th May 09, 09:12 PM
When "isms" define their own ultimate point, how can we ever compare them? What I mean is, most people here follow some form of scientism - or at least have respect for the scientific method - because "it works." Which usually is taken to mean the models of the natural world produced are repeatable and lead to predictions which give us better understanding and control over said world.

However, I doubt the majority of people proscribing to a religious faith would say they do so because is produces models of the natural world that are repeatable, etc. So if the goals are different, how can one or the other ever say it is doing better?

nihilist
10th May 09, 11:32 PM
When a person abandons the notion that any of his "truths" could in fact be false then he is in danger of being religious.

TheLordHumungus
11th May 09, 01:54 AM
When "isms" define their own ultimate point, how can we ever compare them? What I mean is, most people here follow some form of scientism - or at least have respect for the scientific method - because "it works." Which usually is taken to mean the models of the natural world produced are repeatable and lead to predictions which give us better understanding and control over said world.

However, I doubt the majority of people proscribing to a religious faith would say they do so because is produces models of the natural world that are repeatable, etc. So if the goals are different, how can one or the other ever say it is doing better?

Maybe one could claim it is doing better precisely because it gives us models that are repeatable and lead to predictions which give us better understanding and control over said world.

WarPhalange
11th May 09, 02:13 AM
However, I doubt the majority of people proscribing to a religious faith would say they do so because is produces models of the natural world that are repeatable, etc. So if the goals are different, how can one or the other ever say it is doing better?

Goals don't matter. If I wanted to get to France and you wanted to eat a nice sandwich, I'd still be wrong when I said the Earth is flat. This is where the problem lies. Religion in a big part makes claims about the workings of the universe which are just plain not true.

The "moderate" religious people just brush off those inconsistencies, agree with science, and then make some sort of half-assed attempt to suture the religion back together by saying something like "People in those times didn't know, and they wrote it down by mistake" or something like that.

The hardcore religious people, though, just plain stick to what their old book says and disregard anything scientists say, even if their track record is pretty damn good. Good enough to give them the guns they shoot with, the TV they watch, the refrigerator that keeps their beer cool, their fucking cell phones and satellites that make them work, etc. They actually do something very similar to the moderate religious people, but the opposite way. They throw away the part of science that they "know" is wrong, and then mend the rest of it together so that they don't look stupid by saying that you can't get a big metal thing to fly, much less have people on board, or something like that.

This is the same thing that makes people pseudo-patriotic assholes, though. What I am referring to is people's inability and fear of taking an honest look at themselves and accepting when they are wrong. It sucks. It's like a kick in the nuts for your ego. But it's the only way to make any real progress in whatever it is you want to do.

Ajamil
11th May 09, 03:36 AM
Goals don't matter.
But it's the only way to make any real progress in whatever it is you want to do.

You're being inconsistent. Progress in what? I would suggest that Empiricism really exploded the idea that better understanding and predicting the natural world was the preferred progression, but I still haven't heard why that goal is better than any other. Bringing the advancements of technology in shows progress in a field most religions would say are not where they are trying to progress. This doesn't mean it isn't useful, or it shouldn't be used, but it also doesn't trump the ultimate goal.

Virus
11th May 09, 06:28 AM
What is the ultimate goal? Religions claim to have the answer to this.

Ajamil
11th May 09, 05:28 PM
There are as many answers as there are belief systems. Including there is no goal.

What do you consider this goal to be? How can you speak of scientific progress without an ultimate scientific goal?

Answering my own question, science usually works on smaller scales rather than worry over an idealistic ultimate goal. The goal is to figure out whether objects of different mass fall at different rates. The goal is to find a way to stop people from catching a disease. The goal is to make this or that faster/lighter/easier to produce/whatever.

Essentially, where so many like myself get caught up, is that science isn't a movement with a goal, it's a tool used by people with goals. It's a hammer and it using it plays no factor in your ultimate architectural design.

Science, you could say, is simply a problem solving algorithm. The problem you want to solve using the algorithm is arbitrary.

Cullion
11th May 09, 05:34 PM
^ true dat.

nihilist
11th May 09, 05:45 PM
The ultimate scientific goal is to discard the invention and propagation of bullshit.

Fearless Ukemi
11th May 09, 05:55 PM
Until they receive a generous government grant.

nihilist
11th May 09, 05:56 PM
That's not science; that is bullshit.

HappyOldGuy
11th May 09, 05:59 PM
Science is a method for answering falsifiable questions with a high degree of certainty.

Any other claims are turning it into a religion which makes for shitty science and worse religion.

Cullion
11th May 09, 06:36 PM
But Reese just knows that the universe is built upon an immutable mathematical construct. Because he's a mystic.

Robot Jesus
11th May 09, 07:55 PM
thats why I worship Eris.

TheLordHumungus
11th May 09, 11:20 PM
thats why I worship Eris.

I just eat the hot dogs on Fridays, worship is time consuming and not as full of delicious sodium.

WarPhalange
11th May 09, 11:32 PM
But Reese just knows that the universe is built upon an immutable mathematical construct. Because he's a mystic.

It's worked to explain things from the origins of the universe to where it will likely lead, to the interactions between the smallest particles you can think of, even those without any mass.

And religion's done what? Oh, right, it made some people feel all warm in their hearts. Yeah, great. You keep praying for your cancer to go away, and I'll actually try to find a way to make it go away.

Science has a damn good track record for what it was designed to do. Religion can't even figure out what the hell it is, much less start keeping a score tally.

TheLordHumungus
12th May 09, 01:32 AM
What do you consider this goal to be? How can you speak of scientific progress without an ultimate scientific goal?.

I always figured it was the Grand Unification Theory. But I can't speak for others.

Virus
12th May 09, 05:36 AM
Hypothesis: Atheism is brain H4x.

Religious belief comes about as a side effect of evolved cognitive mechanisms that deal with social interactions, judgment, authority, danger, death ect. As atheists, we have the same brains as theists do but the software works a little differently. If you just let the brain run it's course, it becomes religious. But atheists have haxxed their brains to run in a way that isn't "natural" but is better.

It's like getting some video card drivers that have stupid bullshit on them that makes it suck then modding them to remove those suck features. Atheists are therefore brain h4xx0rs. I think that socially, we are evolving towards atheism but you never know, we could have another dark ages brought on by religious hysteria.

Robot Jesus
12th May 09, 06:18 AM
I just eat the hot dogs on Fridays, worship is time consuming and not as full of delicious sodium.


and by worship i mean drinking

HappyOldGuy
12th May 09, 10:32 AM
Hypothesis: Atheism is brain H4x.

Religious belief comes about as a side effect of evolved cognitive mechanisms that deal with social interactions, judgment, authority, danger, death ect. As atheists, we have the same brains as theists do but the software works a little differently. If you just let the brain run it's course, it becomes religious. But atheists have haxxed their brains to run in a way that isn't "natural" but is better.

It's like getting some video card drivers that have stupid bullshit on them that makes it suck then modding them to remove those suck features. Atheists are therefore brain h4xx0rs. I think that socially, we are evolving towards atheism but you never know, we could have another dark ages brought on by religious hysteria.
I'm kinda sorta with you, except that I know for scientific fact that so far, the haxxors haven't delivered the goods. The religious folks are physically and mentally healthier. They live longer. They suffer from less depression. And they are more involved in their communities (not counting church).

W0l1rUlnJm8

Cullion
12th May 09, 01:20 PM
I don't think the hacking works for proselytizing atheists who aren't able to see where their own views are founded in irrational belief. I think they've just replaced one religion with another.

That's why they accept counterfactual things on the basis that 'well, it's the opposite of what some religion wants'.

Ajamil
12th May 09, 01:36 PM
I always figured it was the Grand Unification Theory. But I can't speak for others.
Can you explain to me how understanding and acting upon a grand unification theory is different than understanding and acting upon brahman realization?


I don't think the hacking works for proselytizing atheists who aren't able to see where their own views are founded in irrational belief. I think they've just replaced one religion with another.

That's why they accept counterfactual things on the basis that 'well, it's the opposite of what some religion wants'.

Is this a flaw in the hacking, or is this due more to a social animal's desire to belong to a group? A sort of Conflict Theory "us vs. them" mentality that really has nothing to do with the underlying ideals of the group. In other words, are the proselytizing atheists ones also more likely to be the fan who really cares about sport teams' grudges? Is the label used as an excuse to be better than others?

Cullion
12th May 09, 01:48 PM
It's probably a mix.

I think the purely rational stance includes some 'meh, I just don't know' and 'well, as long as you leave me alone, then whatever'.

People go beyond that I think partly out of the social dynamics you describe, and partly because those mechanisms the psychiatrist described in Virus' earlier video largely keep functioning even after somebody has studied science and rejected traditional organised religion.

HappyOldGuy
12th May 09, 02:01 PM
Is this a flaw in the hacking, or is this due more to a social animal's desire to belong to a group? A sort of Conflict Theory "us vs. them" mentality that really has nothing to do with the underlying ideals of the group. In other words, are the proselytizing atheists ones also more likely to be the fan who really cares about sport teams' grudges? Is the label used as an excuse to be better than others?

I'm gonna riff on this idea to suggest that it is quite possible that the problem in terms of physical and mental health and well being is atheists rather than atheism. I.e., it's not so much the beliefs that are the issue as that the social dynamics of our society tend to populate the atheist camp with a bunch of disgruntled losers.

Ajamil
12th May 09, 02:06 PM
It's probably a mix.

I think the purely rational stance includes some 'meh, I just don't know' and 'well, as long as you leave me alone, then whatever'.
No, I agree with Dawkins and Poop Loops that the probability and evidence points to some kind of mechanistic universe.


People go beyond that I think partly out of the social dynamics you describe, and partly because those mechanisms the psychiatrist described in Virus' earlier video largely keep functioning even after somebody has studied science and rejected traditional organised religion.

Like an optical illusion? Seeing the spiral even though you know that there is no single line and that the segments make concentric circles?

I'd ask how that works socially, but I suppose the response is the dogmatic atheist.

Is it just the dogma that arises from this, or do zealousness and intolerance also arise from this, ya think?

Cullion
12th May 09, 02:54 PM
No, I agree with Dawkins and Poop Loops that the probability and evidence points to some kind of mechanistic universe.

Logical proofs aren't based on probability and the evidence, by definition, cannot decide the question. The unchanging mathematical machine that has always existed and describes all of existence and will never change is comforting, unprovable and ultimately, imaginary.



Like an optical illusion? Seeing the spiral even though you know that there is no single line and that the segments make concentric circles?

Yes.



I'd ask how that works socially, but I suppose the response is the dogmatic atheist.

Is it just the dogma that arises from this, or do zealousness and intolerance also arise from this, ya think?

The latter arises from the dogma, which arises from seeing what isn't there.

Sun Wukong
12th May 09, 09:45 PM
But Reese just knows that the universe is built upon an immutable mathematical construct. Because he's a mystic.

I'm willing to bet there is a lot of truth to that. Perhaps not immutable, but definitely rather hard coded.

Virus
13th May 09, 03:43 AM
I just want to say that I'm totally cool with forcing my personal beliefs on other people. I want to ban religion and I want rationalist inquisitions. I want dudes in red robes dragging people out of their houses if they are suspected of being religious.

PM me if you want in.

Virus
13th May 09, 04:14 AM
I'm kinda sorta with you, except that I know for scientific fact that so far, the haxxors haven't delivered the goods. The religious folks are physically and mentally healthier. They live longer. They suffer from less depression. And they are more involved in their communities (not counting church).

We get a +1 to intelligence.

Arhetton
13th May 09, 04:54 AM
I just assume those studies are stupid.

eg:

There are associations that affect things like life expectancy.

Like if your married you generally have longer life expectancy than if you're single.

Religious people tend to be married.

Doesn't mean the religion is any good or does anything for your life expectancy.

Can't believe those studies are taken seriously.

Ajamil
13th May 09, 09:43 AM
I just want to say that I'm totally cool with forcing my personal beliefs on other people. I want to ban religion and I want rationalist inquisitions. I want dudes in red robes dragging people out of their houses if they are suspected of being religious.

PM me if you want in.

Long as people are honest with themselves, I'm cool with it. If it makes you feel better, my magical book says rationalism wins, and those with bhakti are forced to run and hide in the hills.

This is slightly before the lack of vegetation and cannibalism sets in, but meh.

Zendetta
13th May 09, 10:42 AM
We get a +1 to intelligence.

But -4 to Wisdom.

Its alright; I don't think you wanted to be a Cleric anyway.

HappyOldGuy
13th May 09, 10:45 AM
I just assume those studies are stupid.

eg:

There are associations that affect things like life expectancy.

Like if your married you generally have longer life expectancy than if you're single.

Religious people tend to be married.

Doesn't mean the religion is any good or does anything for your life expectancy.

Can't believe those studies are taken seriously.
I love it when people reject science in the name of rationality. It makes my dick hard.

Everything I said has been validated by multiple studies in top rank journals and confirmed by meta analysis of the studies.

TheLordHumungus
13th May 09, 12:04 PM
Can you explain to me how understanding and acting upon a grand unification theory is different than understanding and acting upon brahman realization?

Much more reliable, predictable results?

Virus
13th May 09, 12:28 PM
I wonder if meditation could provide these same benefits but without accepting things on insufficient grounds. Because the price paid for superstition is a terrible one.

Zendetta
13th May 09, 12:56 PM
^^^ yes.

TONS of documentable evidence for the health and emotional benfits of meditation and yoga, theism not required.

Done right, it also can really shed light on one's own cognitive structures - which some people have suggested that you might benefit from - 'cuz It really is "all in your mind".

Antifa
13th May 09, 01:09 PM
- 'cuz It really is "all in your mind".

I wish your existentialism didnt exist

HappyOldGuy
13th May 09, 01:15 PM
^^^ yes.

TONS of documentable evidence for the health and emotional benfits of meditation and yoga, theism not required.

Done right, it also can really shed light on one's own cognitive structures - which some people have suggested that you might benefit from - 'cuz It really is "all in your mind".
No question that meditation does good things, but it's in no way a simple plug in replacement for religion. It does nothing about the social engagement aspect, nor do religion or meditation have anything to do with viruses silly superstition fetish.

It's also a substantially larger investment of time and effort.

Zendetta
13th May 09, 01:45 PM
I wish your existentialism didnt exist

Don't worry about it - I only exist in your head.

(By the way, you should clean up once in a while!)

Cullion
13th May 09, 03:23 PM
What people who are angrily trying to strip everybody else's religion understimate is the value of certainty.

Having a structure for your place in the world is comforting. All man-made structures are, umm, man-made. But to have an inner certainty about your goals, purpose and loyalty can be very nourishing and comforting. Ripping it away with logic has the problem of not having enough to replace it with, much of the time, yet.

This is why, when militant atheists complain about theistic sophistry, they don't fully appreciate what they're trying to rip away from a lot of harmless, well-meaning people, and they don't yet have something ready for mass consumption that's sufficient to replace it.

Men like DAYoung know full well they're on the hook here. The clock's ticking. They need to give us something we can't tear apart rationally which fulfills the same role. People like Dawkins aren't even close. But they're too nerd to even see it.

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 03:30 PM
well, the whole machine universe theory holds no water. I have yet to see a program that "hard coded" itself.

So until the atheist wing nuts can come up with something better, I'll stick to the simpler God belief.

Cullion
13th May 09, 03:31 PM
You don't get it. And you certainly don't get AI theory.

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 03:32 PM
AI didn't happen by itself. There would be no AI with no people.

Cullion
13th May 09, 03:43 PM
If you think you are constructing an argument for a divine and self-ware creator who guides the physical universe, you are much mistaken. If you think you are playing in 'logically consistent with science'-world, you are barking up the wrong tree. And this is coming from somebody who spent a lot of their free time recently trolling the pro-religion view into this thread for the benefit of healthy debate and a respect for the truth.

Shall we take this from the top ?

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 03:52 PM
How can this even be argued either way? Nobody has determined the cause, so it's pointless and stupid. And that is the point I was trying to make.

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 04:07 PM
Let's just assume we could go back far enough in time to determine the cause of the universe. Did anything physically exist beforehand? How far back does time actually go? Until we know these things, it is all just faith.

Let's say someone in a galaxy 500 billion light years away sees an image of me in their telescope. By the time they see this image, I will be long dead but my image is still being projected through space. Would I still physically exist in the universe? I was going somewhere with this, but I lost my train of thought.

Cullion
13th May 09, 04:24 PM
Let's just assume we could go back far enough in time to determine the cause of the universe

If we construct a logically impossible scenario, we'll get logically impossible outcomes when we attempt to use reason.



Did anything physically exist beforehand?

Nobody really knows.



How far back does time actually go? Until we know these things, it is all just faith.

This is an irrelevant point.



Let's say someone in a galaxy 500 billion light years away sees an image of me in their telescope. By the time they see this image, I will be long dead but my image is still being projected through space. Would I still physically exist in the universe? I was going somewhere with this, but I lost my train of thought.

Umm.. work out what you're trying to say. Otherwise, yes, but no. Whatever?

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 04:31 PM
This is an irrelevant point.



This is the most relevent point. Mos of this thread can be summed up by "my faith is better than yours".

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 04:41 PM
I would rather converse with a religious person who admits his beliefs are based on faith than an atheist wingnut who insists he is more intelligent.

I would also rather converse with an atheist who admits the same than a religious wingnut.

So, I'm not arguing in favor of or against an intelligent creator, and quite frankly don't care (maybe as I get older I will care). I'm just arguing against zealotry based on faith.

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 04:50 PM
Aren't all beliefs somewhat based on faith? If you believe something, you don't know it. Most arguments about Gods and religions are like the kindergarten argument of my dad can kick your dad's ass.

Antifa
13th May 09, 06:08 PM
but my dad can kick your dad's ass

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 06:23 PM
But can he kick my ass?

HappyOldGuy
13th May 09, 06:27 PM
Can god create an ass he cannot kick?

Zendetta
13th May 09, 06:34 PM
Well, there's Fedor.

Lohff
13th May 09, 06:38 PM
Well, there's Fedor.
And Scott Baio.

Antifa
13th May 09, 07:37 PM
But can he kick my ass?

prolly not... he's been dead for like... quite sometime

Virus
13th May 09, 07:48 PM
well, the whole machine universe theory holds no water. I have yet to see a program that "hard coded" itself.

So until the atheist wing nuts can come up with something better, I'll stick to the simpler God belief.

Actually atheism is the simpler model. The universe exists but theism adds complex unknown and unprovable entities on top of that. Therefore atheism is the default model since there is no evidence this entity exists and no good reason why we should assume one.

You've also committed a fallacy when you say that because science doesn't know something, theism must be right. Why is theism the fall-back answer and not natural processes? Every other thing that people used to believe was the direct result of god's intervention has turned out to be the result of natural process, not supernatural ones.

PS: Please don't leave. We need someone to argue with.

Fearless Ukemi
13th May 09, 09:22 PM
I'm not as interested in arguing as I am about learning how you define natural process, when it began, and what caused it.

What other options can we choose from?

nihilist
13th May 09, 10:08 PM
I'm not as interested in arguing as I am about learning how you define natural process, when it began, and what caused it.

[insert religion here] does not help one learn any of those things; it conveniently invents them.

Virus
14th May 09, 06:11 AM
I'm not as interested in arguing as I am about learning how you define natural process, when it began, and what caused it.

What other options can we choose from?

Natural processes: Laws of physics and their extensions into chemistry, biology, ect. Processes that are intrinsic to the universe.

When it began: About 14 billion years ago.

What caused it:

From Wikipedia:



The earliest phases of the Big Bang are subject to much speculation. In the most common models, the universe was filled homogeneously and isotropically with an incredibly high energy density, huge temperatures and pressures, and was very rapidly expanding and cooling. Approximately 10−37 seconds into the expansion, a phase transition caused a cosmic inflation, during which the universe grew exponentially.[25]

MaverickZ
14th May 09, 09:09 AM
Actually atheism is the simpler model. The universe exists but theism adds complex unknown and unprovable entities on top of that. Therefore atheism is the default model since there is no evidence this entity exists and no good reason why we should assume one.
Have they found the Higgs boson yet?

Virus
14th May 09, 10:31 AM
Have they found the Higgs boson yet?

No.

Fearless Ukemi
14th May 09, 11:43 AM
Natural processes: Laws of physics and their extensions into chemistry, biology, ect. Processes that are intrinsic to the universe.

When it began: About 14 billion years ago.

What caused it:

From Wikipedia:


That doesn't explain how all the matter and energy got there. You reject the intelligent creator, so what are your speculations? All I'm trying to do is compare the atheist specualtions to the traditional theist religious speculations.

Did it always exist? Physical science says that matter and energy can not be created or destroyed. But if so, isn't that a violation of the cause and effect law? Something had to happen to set everything into motion. The Big Bang theory is just working with a model of energy and matter that already exists so there has to be history beyond that point in time.

Virus
14th May 09, 03:10 PM
That doesn't explain how all the matter and energy got there. You reject the intelligent creator, so what are your speculations? All I'm trying to do is compare the atheist specualtions to the traditional theist religious speculations.

Did it always exist? Physical science says that matter and energy can not be created or destroyed. But if so, isn't that a violation of the cause and effect law? Something had to happen to set everything into motion. The Big Bang theory is just working with a model of energy and matter that already exists so there has to be history beyond that point in time.

We don't know what was there before the big-bang.

These are some speculations:


There are other universes and interactions between them cause big bangs and the birth of new universes.

The universe is cyclic and goes through expansions and contractions.

There's no such thing as "before" the big bang because time began at that point.


Hopefully the Large Hadron Collider gives us some new data to work with.

nihilist
14th May 09, 05:57 PM
We don't know what was there before the big-bang.

These are some speculations:


There's no such thing as "before" the big bang because time began at that point.




Man's attempts to explain that which he cannot comprehend is hilarious.

Antifa
14th May 09, 06:27 PM
We don't know what was there before the big-bang.

These are some speculations:


There are other universes and interactions between them cause big bangs and the birth of new universes.

The universe is cyclic and goes through expansions and contractions.

There's no such thing as "before" the big bang because time began at that point.


Hopefully the Large Hadron Collider gives us some new data to work with.

Since "time" is a dimension "created" by the big bang, perhaps there is no before or after the big bag, time is an illusion, and the big bang is actually an explosion of perception, things are all happening at once, because time is eternal ---->

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uaQW7e8DfKY

Spade: The Real Snake
14th May 09, 06:32 PM
Jesus with an LHC gun.

HappyOldGuy
14th May 09, 06:36 PM
Jesus with an LHC gun.

You forgot to say in the study. You're out.

Zendetta
14th May 09, 06:41 PM
Since "time" is a dimension "created" by the big bang, perhaps there is no before or after the big bag, time is an illusion, and the big bang is actually an explosion of perception, things are all happening at once, because time is eternal

Hey, there's no need to be patronizing.

We've all done our share of LSD here.

Aphid Jones
15th May 09, 01:32 AM
Akk5uBXd03c

socratic
15th May 09, 01:46 AM
Did it always exist? Physical science says that matter and energy can not be created or destroyed. But if so, isn't that a violation of the cause and effect law? Something had to happen to set everything into motion. The Big Bang theory is just working with a model of energy and matter that already exists so there has to be history beyond that point in time.

That's called the Cosmological Argument and is easily refuted (Now class, pick up your copy of Blackburn's Encyclopedia of Philosophy and turn to chapter 'Arguments for God's existence').

If something came before the sum total of causality (therefore capable of causal interaction but unable to be influenced by it, and thus not in itself caused) then this too is contradictory to causality, the rules of which the Cosmological Argument (and thus your argument) depend on. It also begs the immediate question of why there must be a 'first cause' when you've just admitted some things don't have any.

Secondly, it isn't necessarily true that the universe as a causal chain is one which requires a supporting 'first' link in the chain to exist. An infinite regress is not impossible.

Thus spake Blackburn, in the Gospel of Routledge. Amen.

Virus
15th May 09, 06:27 AM
Another problem with the cosmological argument is that if successful, it would only allow for deism. Theists go several steps beyond this and claim that god talks to people, writes books, grants wishes and tortures the dead.

Cullion
15th May 09, 06:37 AM
Those points only matter if the posited being is bound by logic. There's not really a logical counter-argument to magic.

Cullion
15th May 09, 06:39 AM
Also, physical science does not say that matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed, at the quantum level.

socratic
15th May 09, 07:48 AM
Also, physical science does not say that matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed, at the quantum level.

Quantum follows none of the SOP of the rest of the universe, you know that.

Virus
15th May 09, 08:47 AM
Those points only matter if the posited being is bound by logic. There's not really a logical counter-argument to magic.

Actually even if the theist attempts to escape the infinite regress by defining the space ghost as being unbound by logic then that still only shifts the problem of the first cause. What theists usually say is that god has always existed. In the absence of all other data, an infinite universe is preferable to an infinite god because we know that the universe exists, it's a simpler model and it meets Occam's Razor.

Cullion
15th May 09, 09:31 AM
Occams razor isn't a logical proof, it's a rule of thumb that can be violated.
The problem of the first cause is one of logic, and it just doesn't matter when you're dealing in magical concepts. Magic can't really be attacked with logic.

EuropIan
15th May 09, 09:41 AM
then again, magic has no effect on logic either.

Cullion
15th May 09, 09:50 AM
No, quite so. One side is hamstrung by only allowing themselves to use logic. The other side gets to dip in and out of logic as they wish.

EuropIan
15th May 09, 10:00 AM
My point is that whenever the realm of magic tries to approach the real world (sic), it crumples under it's own flaws and definitions

nihilist
15th May 09, 12:13 PM
Magic is impotent whereas logic can cause painful rectal tearing.

Cullion
15th May 09, 01:10 PM
My point is that whenever the realm of magic tries to approach the real world (sic), it crumples under it's own flaws and definitions

That's not actually true. How can something illogical be destroyed by contradictions ?

nihilist
15th May 09, 03:33 PM
It doesn't get "destroyed" it just shrinks like a frightened turtle.

Cullion
15th May 09, 03:42 PM
I'll show you my magic one day. You'll kneel before it, weeping.

Robot Jesus
15th May 09, 04:25 PM
the Wizard of New Zealand is four for four at ending droughts.

Cullion
15th May 09, 06:19 PM
huh?

Robot Jesus
15th May 09, 06:55 PM
New Zealand has it's own official wizard

Cullion
15th May 09, 06:56 PM
whut?

socratic
15th May 09, 07:11 PM
New Zealand has it's own official wizard

Is it Alan Moore?

Virus, I think the point Cullion is trying to make is you can't use reason to argue with people who can't/won't/don't have reasoned thoughts or theories. It's like trying to convince a KKK elite that immigrants are actually good for filling up those labour shortages. Sure, you're right, but he isn't going to listen, he isn't interested in being right in the actual sense. His stupid thinking tells him he's right and that's the end of it as far as his idiot-ass is concerned.

Of course, this doesn't actually do dick to help that side of the argument, it just shows people are willing to put their fingers in their ears when someone pwns them.

Robot Jesus
15th May 09, 07:17 PM
http://www.wizard.gen.nz/proclamation.html

nihilist
15th May 09, 07:22 PM
I'll show you my magic one day. You'll kneel before it, weeping.

Does it really smell that bad?

Cullion
15th May 09, 07:24 PM
Oh yes.

Cullion
15th May 09, 07:28 PM
Is it Alan Moore?

Virus, I think the point Cullion is trying to make is you can't use reason to argue with people who can't/won't/don't have reasoned thoughts or theories. It's like trying to convince a KKK elite that immigrants are actually good for filling up those labour shortages. Sure, you're right, but he isn't going to listen, he isn't interested in being right in the actual sense. His stupid thinking tells him he's right and that's the end of it as far as his idiot-ass is concerned.

Of course, this doesn't actually do dick to help that side of the argument, it just shows people are willing to put their fingers in their ears when someone pwns them.

Not exactly. It's just that it's not actually possible for humans to create a system of logical reasoning that isn't incomplete or inconsistent, and logic is only one mode of thinking. If somebody proposes that a given thing doesn't obey the laws of logic, if they flat out declare 'this is illogical', then you can't really attack it with logic. It all just slides off. The KKK example would be different because they think what they're proposing is logical.

An educated but convinced theist might be well aware that what they believe cannot be demonstrated using logic, because it isn't bound by human reason. It's a philosophical error to believe that logic always has the final word.

Virus
15th May 09, 07:57 PM
And throw in the promise of immortality and you've got a sucker hooked.

EuropIan
15th May 09, 08:10 PM
That's not actually true. How can something illogical be destroyed by contradictions ?
because as soon as you are able to observe it, then it is not magic.

Cullion
15th May 09, 08:15 PM
because as soon as you are able to observe it, then it is not magic.

That's not true.

EuropIan
15th May 09, 08:22 PM
electricity

Cullion
15th May 09, 08:27 PM
you're assuming that all observations are repeatable. there's no reason why that has to be true.

EuropIan
15th May 09, 08:50 PM
in that case, I would question its relevance.

nihilist
15th May 09, 10:01 PM
R U kwestinin the reluvunse uf JESUS boy?