Book review: ‘Why Science Does Not Disprove God’ by Amir D. Aczel

  

Category:  Religion & Ethics

Via:  john-russell  •  8 months ago  •  504 comments

Book review: ‘Why Science Does Not Disprove God’ by Amir D. Aczel
And here we come to the fascinating irony of the fine-tuning problem. Both the theological explanation and the scientific explanation require faith. To be sure, there are huge differences between science and religion. Religion knows about the transcendent experience. Science knows about the structure of DNA and the orbits of planets. Religion gathers its knowledge largely by personal testament. Science gathers its knowledge by repeated experiments and mathematical calculations, and has been...

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Book review: ‘Why Science Does Not Disprove God’ by Amir D. Aczel


By Alan Lightman April 10, 2014




Alan Lightman is a physicist, novelist and professor of the practice of the humanities at MIT. His latest book is   “The Accidental Universe.”

In “Einstein, God, and the Big Bang,” a colorful chapter of his new book, Amir D. Aczel maintains that Albert Einstein truly believed in God. He points out that Einstein attended synagogue during his year in Prague (1913). He repeats several famous Einstein utterances mentioning the Deity: “Subtle is the Lord, but malicious he is not” and “I want to know God’s thoughts — the rest are details.” And he quotes from a letter the great physicist wrote to a little girl in January 1936: “Everyone who is seriously interested in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that some spirit is manifest in the laws of the universe, one that is vastly superior to that of man.”

Aczel goes on to express strong displeasure with such people as physicist Lawrence Krauss and evolutionary biologist   Richard Dawkins   (who, in his bestseller   “The God Delusion,”   says that Einstein “didn’t really mean it”) when they cast Einstein as an atheist in support of their diatribes against religious belief.

Dawkins; Krauss, with his bestseller   “A Universe From Nothing” ; and Sam Harris, with his bestseller   “The End of Faith,”   are prominent New Atheists, who use modern science to argue that God is not only unnecessary but unlikely to exist at all, even behind the curtains. There’s a certain religious fervor in all these books. Atheists, unite.

Aczel, trained as a mathematician, currently a research fellow in the history of science at Boston University and the author of   “Fermat’s Last Theorem,”   takes aim at the New Atheists in his intelligent and stimulating book   “Why Science Does Not Disprove God.”   He attempts to show that the New Atheists’ analyses fall far short of disproving the existence of God. In fact, he accuses these folks of staining the scientific enterprise by bending it to their dark mission. (“The purpose of this book is to defend the integrity of science,” he writes in his introduction.) Yet Aczel has a sly mission of his own. Invoking various physical phenomena that do not (yet) have convincing scientific explanations, he sets out not only to debunk the arguments of the New Atheists but also to gently suggest that the findings of science actually point to the existence of God.

97800622305911396980541.jpg?uuid=36HMdL9IEeOe5wLB4QoD8A   “Why Science Does Not Disprove God" by Amir Aczel” by Amir D. Aczel. (William Morrow)

In stockpiling his arguments, Aczel quotes from his interviews with dozens of leading scientists and theologians, and interprets statements in a range of popular writings. The resulting book is part science (interesting but superficial summaries of cosmology, quantum mechanics, evolutionary biology, chaos theory), part history of religion, part philosophy, part spirituality, and a modicum of backbiting and invective. The latter applies to the writings of the New Atheists as well.

Let’s start with the origin of the universe. There is plenty of good scientific evidence that our universe began about 14 billion years ago, in a Big Bang of enormously high density and temperature, long before planets, stars and even atoms existed. But what came before? Krauss in his book discusses the current thinking of physicists that our entire universe could have emerged from a jitter in the amorphous haze of the subatomic world called the quantum foam, in which energy and matter can materialize out of nothing. (On the level of single subatomic particles, physicists have verified in the lab that such creation from “nothing” can occur.) Krauss’s punch line is that we do not need God to create the universe. The quantum foam can do it quite nicely all on its own. Aczel asks the obvious question: But where did the quantum foam come from? Where did the quantum laws come from? Hasn’t Krauss simply passed the buck? Legitimate questions. But ones we will probably never be able to answer.

In his foray into biology, Aczel says the theory of evolution is flawed. In particular, he points out that it does not explain altruistic behavior with no apparent survival benefit to the genes of the do-gooder. He cites a recent example of a Mount Everest climbing expedition in which an Israeli climber was well on his way to the top when he discovered a fallen Turkish climber who had lost his face mask and oxygen supply. At the cost of his own fingers and toes to frostbite, and sacrificing the glory of reaching the summit, the Israeli stopped and saved the life of the Turkish fellow. Why did he do it? “Human decency and goodness,” Aczel writes, with the implication that such qualities come from religion and spirituality. (In another chapter, he explains how a code of morality developed in early religions.)

Aczel discusses the mysteries of “emergent” phenomena — when a complex system exhibits a qualitative behavior that cannot be explained in terms of the workings of its individual parts: for example, the emergence of self-replicating life from inanimate molecules or the emergence of consciousness from a collection of connected neurons. He writes, “The inexplicability of such emergent phenomena is the reason why we cannot disprove the idea of some creative power behind everything.”

I disagree. It is not the inability of science to explain some physical phenomenon that shows we cannot disprove the existence of a creative power (i.e., God). Science is a work in progress, and phenomena that science cannot explain now may be explained 100 years from now. Before the 18th century, people had no explanation for lightning. The reason that science cannot disprove the existence of God, in my opinion, is that God, as understood by all human religions, exists outside time and space. God is not part of our physical universe (although God may choose to enter the physical universe at times). God is not subject to experimental tests. Either you believe or you don’t believe.

Thus, no matter what scientific evidence is amassed to explain the architecture of atoms, or the ways that neurons exchange chemical and electrical signals to create the sensations in our minds, or the manner in which the universe may have been born out of the quantum foam, science cannot disprove the existence of God — any more than a fish can disprove the existence of trees. Likewise, no matter what gaps exist in current scientific knowledge, no matter what baffling good deeds people do, no matter what divine and spiritual feelings people have, theology cannot prove the existence of God. The most persuasive evidence of God, according to the great philosopher and psychologist   William James   in his landmark book   “The Varieties of Religious Experience”   (1902), is not physical or objective or provable. It is the highly personal transcendent experience.

There is one scientific conundrum that practically screams out the limitations of both science and religion. And that is the “fine tuning” problem. For the past 50 years or so, physicists have become more and more aware that various fundamental parameters of our universe appear to be fine-tuned to allow the emergence of life — not only life as we know it but life of any kind. For example, if the nuclear force were slightly stronger than it is, then all of the hydrogen atoms in the infant universe would have fused with other hydrogen atoms to make helium, and there would be no hydrogen left. No hydrogen means no water. On the other hand, if the nuclear force were substantially weaker than it is, then the complex atoms needed for biology could not hold together.

In another, even more striking example, if the cosmic “dark energy” discovered 15 years ago were a little denser than it actually is, our universe would have expanded so rapidly that matter could never have pulled itself together to form stars. And if the dark energy were a little smaller, the universe would have collapsed long before stars had time to form. Atoms are made in stars. Without stars there would be no atoms and no life.

So, the question is: Why? Why do these parameters lie in the narrow range that allows life? There are three possibilities: First, there might be some as-yet-unknown physics that requires these parameters to be what they are. But this explanation is highly questionable — why should the laws of physics care about the emergence of life? Second possibility: God created the universe, God wanted life (for whatever reasons), so God designed the universe so that it would allow life. Third possibility, and the one favored by many physicists today: Our universe is one of zillions of different universes with a huge range of parameters, including many different values for the strength of the nuclear force and the density of dark energy.

Some universes have stars and planets, some do not. Some harbor life, some do not. In this scenario, our universe is simply an accident. If our particular universe did not have the right parameters to allow the emergence of life, we wouldn’t be here to talk about it. In a similar way, Earth happens to be at the right distance from the sun to have liquid water, a nice oxygen atmosphere and so on. We can ask why our planet has all these lovely properties, amenable to life. And the explanation is that there is nothing special or designed about Earth. Other planets exist. But if we lived on Mercury, where the temperature is 800 degrees, or on Neptune, where it is 328 degrees below zero, we could not exist. Unfortunately, it is almost certain that we cannot prove the existence of these other universes. We must accept their existence as a matter of faith.

And here we come to the fascinating irony of the fine-tuning problem. Both the theological explanation and the scientific explanation require faith. To be sure, there are huge differences between science and religion. Religion knows about the transcendent experience. Science knows about the structure of DNA and the orbits of planets. Religion gathers its knowledge largely by personal testament. Science gathers its knowledge by repeated experiments and mathematical calculations, and has been enormously successful in explaining much of the physical universe. But, in the manner I have described, faith enters into both enterprises.

Several years ago, I thought that the writings and arguments of such people as Dawkins and Aczel, attempting to disprove or prove the existence of God, were a terrible waste of calories. I have changed my mind. I now believe that the discussions of science and religion, even the attempts of one side to disprove the other, are part of the continuing and restorative conversation of humanity with itself. In the end, all of our art, our science and our theological beliefs are an attempt to make sense of this fabulous and fleeting existence we find ourselves in.

Alan Lightman   is a physicist, novelist and professor of the practice of the humanities at MIT. His latest book is   “The Accidental Universe.”




Article is LOCKED by author/seeder
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JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1  seeder  JohnRussell    8 months ago
And here we come to the fascinating irony of the fine-tuning problem. Both the theological explanation and the scientific explanation require faith. To be sure, there are huge differences between science and religion. Religion knows about the transcendent experience. Science knows about the structure of DNA and the orbits of planets. Religion gathers its knowledge largely by personal testament. Science gathers its knowledge by repeated experiments and mathematical calculations, and has been enormously successful in explaining much of the physical universe. But, in the manner I have described, faith enters into both enterprises.
 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
2  seeder  JohnRussell    8 months ago

from the Introduction to the book

The past few years have seen the rapid growth of the idea that God and science cannot possibly coexist. I feel that many people who hold this view distort both the process of science and its value. Science is about the objective pursuit of truth, and we should be very skeptical when “science” is invoked to further someone’s sociocultural agenda.

The purpose of this book is to defend the integrity of science. I firmly believe that spirituality, religion, and faith have important roles to play in our lives. They keep us humble in the face of the great wonders of nature; they help maintain our social values, promoting the care for our weak and poor; and they provide hope and some moral code in our ever more complicated modern world. Science and spirituality are both integral parts of the human search for truth and meaning; they provide us possible paths of comprehending and appreciating the vast cosmos and our place in it.

This book is not written from the perspective of any one faith tradition, nor does it seek to defend our often flawed religious institutions. “God” here is used in the broadest possible sense: the Creator. Spirituality, including religious faith, is understood to be the age-old human impulse to know, respond, and possibly align with this absolute, original, and eternal force, without which the universe would not exist. My goal is to restore science and faith to their proper realms and end the confusion sown by those who aim to destroy faith in the name of science.

As a science writer who has made a career of reporting on some of the most complicated and exciting advances in science and mathematics over the past quarter century, I realize that in publishing this book I am taking a risk. In these pages I am attacking the arguments of many prominent scientists and thinkers, and I understand that my doing so will likely lead to criticisms of my book. But I feel very strongly that the integrity of science has been compromised by some New Athiest writers and that it is important to set things straight and to restore the distinction between rigorous logic and overreaching supposition. 
 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
3  Thrawn 31    8 months ago

Science doesn’t disprove god, no one ever said it does. What it does do is negate the need for a god in most instances. Science has made god obsolete in our everyday lives.

And no, science doesn’t require faith, at all. In fact it is the exact opposite. I don’t have “faith” that my TV is going to work when I hit the power button, I expect it to work because the engineers who designed it knew what the fuck they were doing, and the scientific principles that their work rests on are so well supported by evidence and rigorous testing that their work is expected to produce the desired result. 

No faith required. And that applies to virtually everything in my everyday life.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3    8 months ago

There are those who come close to it a lot of times. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3    8 months ago
Science has made god obsolete in our everyday lives.

That is really more an individual preference than anything else. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.1  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2    8 months ago

Science has made God obsolete in the sense of understanding and knowing more about the world around us. We no longer (and should not) need God to fill in the gaps of our knowledge. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.2  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.1    8 months ago

As the reviewer says, "Religion knows about the transcendent experience. Science knows about the structure of DNA and the orbits of planets. Religion gathers its knowledge largely by personal testament. Science gathers its knowledge by repeated experiments and mathematical calculations, and has been enormously successful in explaining much of the physical universe."

I dont think the two ever quite meet. To an extent transcendent experience disregards science and science disregards transcendent experience. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.3  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.2    8 months ago

I'll take science. "Personal testament" is subjective and more prone to bias or wishful thinking. Science is more concrete. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.5  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.3    8 months ago

Why should belief in God have to rely on scientific discovery to justify it?  It almost oxymoronic.

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
3.2.6  Thrawn 31  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2    8 months ago

It has made god obsolete in the sense that we need a god to explain the world around us. If you personally want to think you woke up this morning because god willed it rather than the biological processes that your body performs just kept on trucking, then good for you. But as a practical matter a god doesn’t have anything to do with you waking up. If you don’t one day the emt’s aren’t going to ask god what happened.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.7  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.5    8 months ago

Science focuses on finding or determining fact, based on evidence or proof. Belief does not equal fact. It's disingenuous or intellectually lazy to accept something as "fact" based on nothing but belief and dishonest to posit something as fact based on nothing but belief, especially when the belief runs contrary to established science.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.8  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3.2.6    8 months ago
But as a practical matter a god doesn’t have anything to do with you waking up. If you don’t one day the emt’s aren’t going to ask god what happened.

That is more a point of view than something that can be proven. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.9  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.7    8 months ago

This is from a review of Lawrence Krauss's book "A Universe From Nothing"

With characteristic wit, eloquence and clarity Lawrence Krauss gives a wonderfully illuminating account of how science deals with one of the biggest questions of all: how the universe's existence could arise from nothing. It is a question that philosophy and theology get themselves into muddle over, but that science can offer real answers to, as Krauss's lucid explanation shows. Here is the triumph of physics over metaphysics, reason and enquiry over obfuscation and myth, made plain for all to see: Krauss gives us a treat as well as an education in fascinating style.

You could sit here for all eternity waiting for something to be created from nothing and it will never ever ever happen. 

Krauss's claim that the universe was created from nothing was basically dishonest, but he is an atheist who wanted to discredit belief in God. 

Don't tell me that there aren't scientists who are predisposed to an atheistic agenda. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.10  Drakkonis  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3.2.6    8 months ago
It has made god obsolete in the sense that we need a god to explain the world around us. If you personally want to think you woke up this morning because god willed it rather than the biological processes that your body performs just kept on trucking, then good for you. But as a practical matter a god doesn’t have anything to do with you waking up. If you don’t one day the emt’s aren’t going to ask god what happened.

This is a faith statement, since you can't present evidence to the contrary. This is the point of the article. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.11  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.7    8 months ago
Science focuses on finding or determining fact, based on evidence or proof. Belief does not equal fact. It's disingenuous or intellectually lazy to accept something as "fact" based on nothing but belief and dishonest to posit something as fact based on nothing but belief, especially when the belief runs contrary to established science.

And yet, even after saying all this, you feel perfectly okay with saying God is not an explanation or is not necessary. You have no evidence that God is not necessary. That is simply your belief. That God is not involved is simply a position of faith. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.12  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.11    8 months ago

A god or sentient creator is speculation.  It is not necessarily wrong, but it is also not even an hypothesis given the lack of supporting evidence that points directly to 'sentient creator'.   The Intelligent Design advocates tried to make a sentient creator hypothesis and failed.

So while it is possible that a sentient creator exists, we have zero genuine evidence to support that speculation so there is really nothing that would intrigue science to consider the notion of a sentient creator.

Maybe the future will deliver evidence of a sentient creator;  but as of now with over 10,000 years of recorded history, it has not yet arrived.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.13  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.11    8 months ago

God is not an explanation. It's a failure to explain. Its an "I don't know" in a theistic package. To use God as a legitimate explain, one would first have to prove there's a God or provide evidence for one. God is no more a valid exanation for something than it is using fairies, leprechauns, or gnomes. God being involved is just a belief. But nothing empirical supports that.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.14  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.13    8 months ago

You are someone who does not believe that transcendent experience is relevant to discussing the existence of God. You think it must be able to be demonstrated through science or it is worthless. 

You are never going to get to the point where the writer of the article, or the author of the book ‘Why Science Does Not Disprove God’ are at. 

The writer of the article says he is a physicist. The writer of the book is a science writer.  I think they probably understand these issues as well as you do, but reach widely divergent conclusions from yours. 

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
3.2.15  Split Personality  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.8    8 months ago
That is more a point of view than something that can be proven. 

No, it is not.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.16  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Split Personality @3.2.15    8 months ago

You can prove that God does not wake you up in the morning? Go ahead. 

Since the existence of God itself cannot be proven or disproven, how do you go about proving the effect or non effect of that entity? 

 
 
 
evilgenius
PhD Guide
3.2.17  evilgenius  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.14    8 months ago
You are someone who does not believe that transcendent experience is relevant to discussing the existence of God.

This ignores the scientific evidence these spiritual experiences could be mere chemical brain responses. 

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
3.2.18  Split Personality  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.16    8 months ago

I know that you posted this shit knowing exactly what would happen throughout this seed.

Did your god make you do it?

Promoting comity and civility deliberately JR?

/S

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.19  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Split Personality @3.2.18    8 months ago

What nonsense. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.20  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Split Personality @3.2.18    8 months ago

Why does the topic of this article bother you? 

This site is overwhelmingly atheism friendly. You dont even want to allow an occasional article that offers a different perspective from an intelligent point of view? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.21  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.14    8 months ago
... think it must be able to be demonstrated through science or it is worthless. 

If there is no quality evidence supporting a speculation then why would a rational mind believe the speculation to be true?

For example, it makes sense to me that exolife likely exists somewhere in our vast universe.   We have no evidence of exolife but the vastness of space, the amount of time our universe has been in existence and the fact that the fundamental physics that sustain life on Earth are, as best we can tell, the very same physics underlying the entire universe.

I do not believe exolife exists because I have no hard evidence of same; just persuasive metrics.   "Exolife exists" is not a statement of truth; it is at best speculation.   It is interesting to ponder but one cannot use that speculation as a foundation for anything.   Even though I think it is likely to be found to be true, right now the speculation is indeed worthless.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.22  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.21    8 months ago
If there is no quality evidence supporting a speculation then why would a rational mind believe the speculation to be true?

Now we are going to start this again?   Were these people all irrational? 

25 Famous Scientists Who Believed in God

25 Famous Scientists Who Believed in God

By   Scientist

How did the universe begin? How did life arise on Earth? These have been humanity’s most important questions through the ages. In the last century, we have learned more about science and the creation of the universe than everything known before the twentieth century. What is more notable, the last decade has opened new discoveries leading to new theories that give us unique hypotheses about the presence of God and the nature of the universe.

Today’s article will discuss some of the most famous scientists in history who believed in God.

Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Arthur Compton (1892 – 1962)

Blaise Pascal (1623-1662)


Ernst Haeckel (1834 –1919)

Erwin Schrödinger (1887 –1961)



Francis Bacon (1561-1627)



Francis Collins (Born 1950)

Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)

Gottfried Leibniz (1646 –1716)

Gregor Mendel (1822-1884)

Guglielmo Marconi (1874 –1937)

Isaac Newton (1642-1727)

James Clerk Maxwell (1831 –1879)

Johannes Kepler (1571-1630)

John Eccles (1903 – 1997)

Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)

Max Planck (1858-1947)

Michael Faraday (1791-1867)

Nicholas Copernicus (1473-1543)

Rene Descartes (1596-1650)

Robert Boyle (1791-1867)

Robert A. Millikan (1868 – 1953)

Werner Heisenberg (1901 – 1976)

William Harvey (1578 –1657)

William Thomson Kelvin (1824-1907)

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
3.2.23  Split Personality  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.22    8 months ago

Means nothing.

They all lack life

Life is a cycle form the smallest virus or bacteria to the largest mammals in the sea.

They do quite well with no "knowledge" of any gods.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
3.2.24  Split Personality  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.16    8 months ago

I have your good word as a Catholic, no?

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
3.2.25  Thrawn 31  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.10    8 months ago

Nah, no medical report is going to say “well we asked god and didn’t get a response.”

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.26  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.14    8 months ago

I am someone who goes by empirical evidence. One may believe there's a God. There could be a God. But there is no evidence for one. Only belief. So there's no reason to accept or conclude there's a God. But science doesn't say either way and no scientist should make an absolute declaration either.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.27  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.13    8 months ago
God is not an explanation.

Um, yeah, God is an explanation. Watch. 

Person 1: "Why do you think the universe exists."

Person 2: "Because God created it."

That's what is called an explanation.

It's a failure to explain.

Nope. We just saw person two give his explanation. 

Its an "I don't know" in a theistic package.

No again, and no different than someone of your beliefs stating God is not an explanation, since you can't prove He is not. 

To use God as a legitimate explain, one would first have to prove there's a God or provide evidence for one.

Again, no. (you're consistently wrong, aren't you?) Most of the planet believes God is a legitimate explanation as to why we exist. What you mean is, unless God is proven your way, you don't consider it legitimate. Perfectly fine for you. Not so much for the rest of us. 

The Intelligent Design advocates tried to make a sentient creator hypothesis and failed.

Really? How did they fail, exactly? Were you able to prove it wasn't? 

So while it is possible that a sentient creator exists, we have zero genuine evidence to support that speculation so there is really nothing that would intrigue science to consider the notion of a sentient creator.

Correction. You have zero genuine evidence that you accept based on what criteria you allow yourself. There's no "we", unless you have a mouse in your pocket. 

Maybe the future will deliver evidence of a sentient creator;  but as of now with over 10,000 years of recorded history, it has not yet arrived.

What you and other materialists don't seem to understand, perhaps because of some sort of mental block, is that we don't have to adhere to your standards or criteria for considering the question of God. Just because you don't believe in the supernatural doesn't mean we have to go along with that. We don't have to adhere to your faith position that unless science can prove God then there's no way to know if God exists and no point in pursuing the issue. If that's what your faith tells you, then by all means, have at it. But the rest of us get to make up our own minds. 

Thanks for your time : )

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.28  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.27    8 months ago
That's what is called an explanation.

No, that is called an assumption. And one without any empirical support.

Nope. We just saw person two give his explanation. 

We saw person 2 make an assumption.

No again, and no different than someone of your beliefs stating God is not an explanation, since you can't prove He is not. 

I have not stated my beliefs. God is no more an explanation than using fairies, leprechauns, or gnomes. DO you consider those things acceptable "explanations?"

Most of the planet believes God is a legitimate explanation as to why we exist. What you mean is, unless God is proven your way, you don't consider it legitimate. Perfectly fine for you. Not so much for the rest of us. 

Key word there is "believe." But belief does not equal fact. And without evidence, there is no reason to simply accept it as is.

The Intelligent Design advocates tried to make a sentient creator hypothesis and failed. Really? How did they fail, exactly? Were you able to prove it wasn't? 

To be clear, that response is a reply to a statement TiG made, not me.

Youhave zero genuine evidence that you accept based on what criteria you allow yourself. There's no "we", unless you have a mouse in your pocket. 

Also a reply to TiG's statement. But I presume the evidence TiG refers to is objective, empirical evidence. That is the evidence science prefers to go by and the best means for establishing objective truth.

is that we don't have to adhere to your standards or criteria for considering the question of God. Just because you don't believe in the supernatural doesn't mean we have to go along with that.

I'm not sure why you replied to TiG's statements in your reply to me. But whether you go along with it or not is irrelevant. It's about establishing what can be objectively demonstrated, not what one wants to believe or other wishful thinking.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.29  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.22    8 months ago

Right off the bat, Albert Einstein did not believe in a god as you would define it but rather he believed in Spinoza's god which is not an entity.

But besides that, the fact that someone believes in a god does not mean the person is irrational.

One of my all time favorite scientists is Dr. Francis Collins who is a devout Christian.  He is the very opposite of irrational.

However, his belief that the Christian God exists is not based on evidence.   And Dr. Collins freely admits this.   When asked how he, as such an accomplished scientist, holds such an unusual belief against all of his principles for truth, he shrugs his shoulders.    An honest man.

Why a rational mind like Dr. Collins' et. al. believes as true that which has no evidence remains a curiosity.    But holding an irrational belief does not ipso facto make the person irrational.    Try to not jump to such an extreme conclusion.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.30  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.9    8 months ago
You could sit here for all eternity waiting for something to be created from nothing and it will never ever ever happen. 

Who says something was created from nothing? Science doesn't say the universe was created from nothing.

Krauss's claim that the universe was created from nothing was basically dishonest, but he is an atheist who wanted to discredit belief in God. 

Yes, it is dishonest and demonstrates a bias.

Don't tell me that there aren't scientists who are predisposed to an atheistic agenda. 

What exactly is the "atheistic agenda?"

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.31  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.30    8 months ago
What exactly is the "atheistic agenda?"

LOL ... for a forum that is supposedly so atheist friendly it would seem that very little learning about atheism has taken place.    It is not for lack of explanation.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.32  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.31    8 months ago
for a forum that is supposedly so atheist friendly it would seem that very little learning about atheism has taken place.    It is not for lack of explanation.

More likely due to willful ignorance and/or individual bias.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.33  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.22    8 months ago

Also, John, you are making an argument from authority which you know is fallacious.

Why not just state that the super majority of people on the planet and for recorded history believe in a god of some sort?   That would be the truth and would be as irrelevant as you listing 25 famous scientists.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.34  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.33    8 months ago

I listed the scientists because you keep claiming that belief in God is irrational. 

Were those 25 scientists who believed in God irrational? Asking you that question is not a fallacious argument. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.35  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.29    8 months ago

As you probably know, many famous people that believe or believed in God did so based on their experience delving into philosophy.  Is philosophy irrational ? You and Gordy are doing the exact thing the seeded article is talking about, and the book the article is reviewing talks about. You discredit any belief in God that is not based on science as "irrational" .  You have your right to your opinion but millions of rational people most likely disagree with you. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.36  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.27    8 months ago
Most of the planet believes God is a legitimate explanation as to why we exist.

Most of the planet believes in a god.  And I suspect most of them believe that their god is also the creator.  

Why do you think that is significant?   Most of the planet used to believe that the sun orbited the Earth.

Really? How did they fail, exactly? Were you able to prove it wasn't? 

Their claims of irreducible complexity were shown to be reducible.   Now, Drakk, this is public knowledge so if you want more details they are at your fingertips. 

You have zero genuine evidence that you accept based on what criteria you allow yourself. There's no "we", unless you have a mouse in your pocket. 

Outstanding!   You have genuine evidence (that means others can verify this evidence) that your god exists?   Deliver it.  You will be famous.

... we don't have to adhere to your standards or criteria for considering the question of God.

Well of course not Drakk.    If you were basing your faith on quality evidence you would not believe in your god due to the lack of evidence in contrast with the grandness of the belief.    Obviously your belief is not based on evidence (what you call 'my' criteria) (meaning others can verify same).    No need to tell anyone that.

If you were to state that you believe in God that is simply an expression of belief.   If you go to the next step and claim that there is no possibility that your belief is wrong, then you have crossed the line into gnostic theism and have the burden of proof (or at least sound evidence).

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.37  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.28    8 months ago
No, that is called an assumption.

Oh, sure. It qualifies as an assumption by definition but that doesn't mean it isn't also an explanation, especially given the context. So does assuming that empirical support is necessary for belief in God to be valid.

I have not stated my beliefs.

Of course you have. It's hardly necessary to use some sort of magic phrase such as "I believe..." in order for anyone to know what your beliefs are. For instance, you believe, take it on faith or any other way that is likely going to be offensive to you that unless God can be proven empirically there's no basis for believing God is a fact. That's what's called a belief. 

Key word there is "believe." But belief does not equal fact.

You guys keep saying that but not understanding the full implication of it. Belief doesn't equal fact, that is true. but it also doesn't negate belief because what is believed in may very well be a fact. Og, from the time we hunted mammoths may have believed the world was basically a sphere. He had no evidence for it other than maybe thinking that everything in the sky seemed to be like that, why not the world? Now, the world was not a sphere because he believed it was but it is in fact a sphere and his belief was actually correct. So, saying belief doesn't equal fact isn't really saying much at all. 

To be clear, that response is a reply to a statement TiG made, not me.

Yes, it is. Don't know how I did that so I won't address the rest of it. Not fair to get you to answer for what TiG said. My apologies. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.38  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.30    8 months ago
Who says something was created from nothing?

"A Universe From Nothing" is the title of a book written by

Lawrence Maxwell Krauss (born May 27, 1954) isan American-Canadian theoretical physicist and cosmologist who previously taught at Arizona State University, Yale University, and Case Western Reserve University.He founded ASU's Origins Project, now called ASU Interplanetary Initiative, to investigate fundamental questions about the universe

The title is not a question. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.39  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.38    8 months ago
"A Universe From Nothing" is the title of a book written by

Krauss, if you read the book, is playing games with the title.   I think it was a mistake on his part because this is a book of science, but he does not seem to see the problem.

Krauss does not hold that the universe came from a literal nothing but rather from a net-zero energy state (which is not nothing).

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.40  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.39    8 months ago

Lawrence M. Krauss. Krauss, who is an  atheist , works to reduce the influence of what he regards as superstition and religious dogma in popular culture.

Krauss is the author of several bestselling books, including  The Physics of Star Trek  (1995) and A  Universe from Nothing  (2012), and chaired  the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists  Board of Sponsors.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.41  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.38    8 months ago
"A Universe From Nothing" is the title of a book

Interesting. I have not read that one.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.42  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.34    8 months ago
Were those 25 scientists who believed in God irrational?

John, what part of this confuses you?:

TiG @3.2.29 ☞ ... the fact that someone believes in a god does not mean the person is irrational.

Asking you that question is not a fallacious argument. 

Never suggested it was, again you need to read what I wrote.  I was clear.   Putting forth 25 authorities to argue that rational people can believe in a god is the fallacious argument.   Asking me if I think that they are irrational is a legit question (which I answered).

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.43  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.35    8 months ago
As you probably know, many famous people that believe or believed in God did so based on their experience delving into philosophy.  Is philosophy irrational ?

Philosophy, when speaking of gods, typically argues reasons to justify a belief in god.   Philosophy, as a discipline and a body of knowledge, does not conclude that a particular god exists.   Also, I have yet to find a single philosophical proof (i.e. a sound argument) for the existence of any god defined as a sentient entity (i.e. conventional definition).   Have you?   If not, your philosophy comment carries no weight.

You and Gordy are doing the exact thing the seeded article is talking about, and the book the article is reviewing talks about. You discredit any belief in God that is not based on science as "irrational" .

Not 'any belief' but rather the certain belief.   This is the difference between an agnostic theist and a gnostic theist.   The agnostic theist does not necessarily hold an irrational belief because this theist recognizes that the belief might be wrong.   In contrast, the gnostic theist holds no possibility that their belief is wrong.   That, JR, is the irrational belief.

By the way, Dr. Francis Collins has noted that while he has a deep belief in the Christian God, he acknowledges that his belief may be wrong.   He states that he hopes he is right though.   Dr. Collins is an agnostic theist — humble (and rational) enough to admit that his belief is not necessarily true.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.44  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.37    8 months ago
Oh, sure. It qualifies as an assumption by definition

Because that is exactly what it is!

but that doesn't mean it isn't also an explanation, especially given the context. So does assuming that empirical support is necessary for belief in God to be valid.

It seems you want to redefine a term to suit your own needs or ideas.

Of course you have.

Specify precisely what "beliefs" I have touted!

For instance, you believe, take it on faith or any other way that is likely going to be offensive to you that unless God can be proven empirically there's no basis for believing God is a fact. That's what's called a belief. 

No, that's called logical analysis. There is no evidence for a god. So reason to accept or conclude there is a god, especially as fact. Without evidence, I do not accept claims for a god, as they lack veracity. It's that simple. Anything more you try to attribute to me is your own invention and otherwise a dishonest tactic!

Belief doesn't equal fact, that is true.

Glad you agree.

but it also doesn't negate belief because what is believed in may very well be a fact.

So you're saying, "Well, it could be fact." In other words, you're effectively making a guess and hoping it's correct. I prefer greater degrees of probability or certainty. That is why evidence becomes so important. It is intellectually lazy or dishonest to accept or proclaim something as fact when there is no evidence to demonstrate the veracity of the claim.

He had no evidence for it other than maybe thinking that everything in the sky seemed to be like that, why not the world? Now, the world was not a sphere because he believed it was but it is in fact a sphere and his belief was actually correct.

Yes, we have irrefutable proof the planet is a sphere. The "belief" is validated and is now factual (despite claims to the contrary from Flat-Earthers). But that doesn't change my previous statement. If the world was indeed flat, then what? Beliefs the world was round would have been non factual. It's akin to throwing something at the wall and seeing what sticks.

So, saying belief doesn't equal fact isn't really saying much at all. 

Considering there are those who seem to be unable to discern the difference between belief and fact, I'd say belief does not equal fact cannot be stated enough.

Yes, it is. Don't know how I did that so I won't address the rest of it. Not fair to get you to answer for what TiG said. My apologies. 

No worries. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.45  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.44    8 months ago
It seems you want to redefine a term to suit your own needs or ideas.

Really? What's the definition of "explanation"? 

Specify precisely what "beliefs" I have touted!

Why are you asking this question and then immediately quote the answer to it? That doesn't make much sense. 

No, that's called logical analysis.

Not if it is based on faulty assumptions. For instance, recognizing that science doesn't address the issue of God, nor can it, but then making science the basis for your "logical analysis" would be tantamount to saying that if science can't examine it, it doesn't exist. You have no evidence that such a position is factual so therefore, your position is one of faith. Even if you allow that there may be a God but essentially treat the issue as irrelevant because it can't be examined you still are operating on faith because you have no evidence that it is irrelevant. It's just a personal decision on your part to just believe that science determines reality. 

So you're saying, "Well, it could be fact." In other words, you're effectively making a guess and hoping it's correct.

Yeah, I know you guys like to think that's the truth but it isn't. Not going to bother with convincing you otherwise, though. Done it enough already. 

It's that simple. Anything more you try to attribute to me is your own invention and otherwise a dishonest tactic!

Um, nope. If it isn't supported by empirical evidence, according to you, then what's left is faith. Sorry, but those are your rules, right? 

The "belief" is validated and is now factual

Um, are you saying the earth wasn't a sphere before it was proven? How is it "now factual", implying it wasn't before? 

If the world was indeed flat, then what? Beliefs the world was round would have been non factual. It's akin to throwing something at the wall and seeing what sticks.

You're wandering away from the point and trying to prove what we both already agree on, which is that belief doesn't equal fact. That means something isn't true simply because you believe it is. Why? 

The point is, it works the other way as well. Belief doesn't equal non-fact, either. 

Considering there are those who seem to be unable to discern the difference between belief and fact, I'd say belief does not equal fact cannot be stated enough.

Oh, it definitely can. Especially the way you use it. As if stating it proves whatever point you're trying to make about what the other guy believes. It doesn't, but you don't seem able to see that. I think this is so because you believe what constitutes evidence applies to everyone. It doesn't. It really only holds for people who are part of the materialist religion, or one of its many derivatives. Those of us who don't hold to religions like that have different standards of evidence. Or, rather, not different, just a greater pool of what we consider evidence than you accept. 

It's kind of a circular reasoning thing with you guys. Science, it is agreed by most, does not nor can not address the subject of God but it's always "there's no scientific evidence for God". Weird, huh? 

No worries.

Thanks. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.46  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.45    8 months ago
... tantamount to saying that if science can't examine it, it doesn't exist.

No, that would be:  'without credible evidence there is no reason to believe (as in hold as truth) that it exists'.   That does not mean it does not exist.

We have explained this so many times.  The religious side of the argument always seems to conflate  X does not exist  -withI am not convinced X exists.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.47  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.46    8 months ago

Did you read the seeded article?  The seeded article addresses the position you and Gordy take all the time. 

People don't have to prove scientifically that God exists in order to be able to justify their beliefs. That is not the way it works. 

Some of the great minds in history have made philosophical arguments for the existence of God. It is entirely appropriate and acceptable. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.48  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.47    8 months ago
People don't have to prove scientifically that God exists in order to be able to justify their beliefs.

As I have already explained, if someone makes a claim (and it does not matter if it is about God) of certainty then they bear the burden of proof.

If someone claims X is true and that there is no way they are wrong, do you not see how they bear the burden of proof?

In contrast, if someone claims X is true but they acknowledge they might be wrong, they do NOT bear the burden of proof.

This is basic philosophy.

Burden:   The Earth is flat;  no chance that I am wrong.

No burden:  I believe the Earth is flat; but I could be wrong.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.49  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.48    8 months ago

I have said about all I want to say on this seed. 

Thanks for the discussion. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.50  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.46    8 months ago
We have explained this so many times.  The religious side of the argument always seems to conflate  X does not exist  -withI am not convinced X exists.

Um, yeah. Like there's a meaningful difference. When you pair "I am not convinced" with what it would take to convince you, there's no difference. It's just a device atheists use to get out of defending the statement "there is no God". 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.51  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.48    8 months ago
As I have already explained, if someone makes a claim (and it does not matter if it is about God) of certainty then they bear the burden of proof.

Is that in the constitution? Is it a law of nature? Where exactly does it say we have to do that?  Why isn't it it up to the individual to find out for themselves? 

 
 
 
XXJefferson51
Senior Guide
3.2.52  XXJefferson51  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.19    8 months ago

Exactly!  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.53  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.50    8 months ago
Um, yeah. Like there's a meaningful difference.

There is a major difference.   If you cannot see this that explains a lot of the misunderstanding.

It's just a device atheists use to get out of defending the statement "there is no God". 

Being so cynical also contributes to misunderstanding given it leads to presumption.

It is not my position that there cannot be a god.   My position is that I am not persuaded that there is a god.   There is no 'getting out' of anything.   I stated my honest position.   The fact that you cannot understand that (or that you do not believe it) also explains a lot (to me).


When you pair "I am not convinced" with what it would take to convince you, there's no difference.

God is probably the grandest possible claim.  The greater the claim the more substantial the evidence requirement.   For example, if you claim that you are a pastor of some church, I would not need much to accept that as likely true.  It is not that grand of a claim.   But if you claim that you have the highest IQ in North America then I would need substantially better evidence before I could find myself buying that.

So you should not be surprised that someone would require extraordinary evidence to be convinced of probably the grandest possible claim:  that there is a sentient creator.   And when you go further and highly attribute the creator and include stories, etc. you make it even more challenging to accept all of that without commensurate evidence.

But, most importantly, "I am not convinced" absolutely leaves room to be convinced.   It is stating that while I am not currently persuaded that a sentient creator exists, I realize that I am not omniscient and it is quite possible that I am wrong.   In contrast, "there is no god" shuts the door and arrogantly (and irrationally) implies that the claimer thinks it impossible to be wrong.   The claimer would have to be omniscient.

Major, major difference Drakk.   Unless you understand this, you will never understand atheism.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.54  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.51    8 months ago
Is that in the constitution? Is it a law of nature? Where exactly does it say we have to do that?  Why isn't it it up to the individual to find out for themselves? 

It is logic.   Look up "burden of proof".   Focus on the description for philosophy (vs. law).  This is so common, there is no point in me explaining it (yet again).   Besides, it is better that you go to a third party since you do not seem to read half of what I write anyway.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.55  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.53    8 months ago
If you cannot see this that explains a lot of the misunderstanding.

It's amazing to me that you think there's a misunderstanding. Well, no. I forgot who I was speaking to. Not so amazing.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.56  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.54    8 months ago
It is logic.   Look up "burden of proof".

Wow. Went right over your head, didn't it. You really can't see it. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.57  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.51    8 months ago
Why isn't it it up to the individual to find out for themselves? 

Forgot to comment on this.   It is up to the individual to find out for themselves.   Who suggested otherwise?

The burden of proof does not mean that the claimer must provide proof to his interlocutor.   If that is what you are thinking then strike that thought.  The burden of proof identifies a fallacy.   If a claim bears the burden of proof (because the claim is one of 100% certainty) and said proof is not supplied then the claim is fallacious.  

When presented in an argument, a claim of certainty sans proof is equivalent to an unproven assertion.   It makes the argument unsound.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.58  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.56    8 months ago
Wow. Went right over your head, didn't it. You really can't see it. 

Playing games again?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.59  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.55    8 months ago
It's amazing to me that you think there's a misunderstanding.

You should not be amazed.   Here is an immediate example of misunderstanding:

Drakk @3.2.50When you pair "I am not convinced" with what it would take to convince you, there's no difference.

That is a misunderstanding (on your part).   I explained why @3.2.53

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.60  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.53    8 months ago

Every time you say something on this seed, you are proving the premise of the seeded article correct. 

I doubt that is your intention though. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.61  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.60    8 months ago

John what is the value of you making such a vague claim with no supporting facts or reason?

If you have a point to make then stand up and clearly make it.   Be specific.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.62  Nerm_L  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.37    8 months ago
You guys keep saying that but not understanding the full implication of it. Belief doesn't equal fact, that is true. but it also doesn't negate belief because what is believed in may very well be a fact. Og, from the time we hunted mammoths may have believed the world was basically a sphere. He had no evidence for it other than maybe thinking that everything in the sky seemed to be like that, why not the world? Now, the world was not a sphere because he believed it was but it is in fact a sphere and his belief was actually correct. So, saying belief doesn't equal fact isn't really saying much at all. 

Isn't a belief really a conclusion?  Facts support arriving at judgements and decisions as a reasoned conclusion.  Someone saying they have looked at the facts and have concluded a meaning for the assembled facts is really stating a belief.  The distinction between 'I have concluded' and 'I believe' really does split frog hairs.

In your example, Og concluded the world was a sphere.  Og had no way to test that conclusion so accepting the correctness of the conclusion required faith.  That would suggest that stating a belief is really a shorthand means of saying that 'what has been observed results in a conclusion'.  IMO a belief is much more than a fact.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.63  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.62    8 months ago
IMO a belief is much more than a fact.

A fact is stronger than a conclusion.   A fact, literally, is something that is objectively true.   A conclusion, in contrast, does not have that high bar of truth.   And if by 'conclusion' you are restricting yourself only to the results of a sound formal argument or application of the scientific method, then you have essentially equated 'conclusion' with 'fact'.  (Although even here the conclusion is not necessarily as strong as a fact.   Fact = proven true.)

A belief, by normal meaning, is less than a fact.  It is merely the subjective perception that something is true.   One can hold all sorts of beliefs that are false.   Flat Earthers believe the planet is flat.   It is a fact that the Earth is NOT flat.

 
 
 
mocowgirl
Professor Quiet
3.2.64  mocowgirl  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.62    8 months ago
IMO a belief is much more than a fact.

Interesting.  So that means that there are really leprechauns because people have a belief?

What percentage of people believe in leprechauns? – Sidmartinbio.org

What percentage of people believe in leprechauns?

33%
Poll reveals 33% believe in Leprechauns.

How many leprechauns are left in the world?

A pparently, there are 236 leprechauns that still live in the caverns of Slieve Foye. In 2009, the EU granted heritage status to the remaining wee people; they now have their own protected sanctuary nestled in the mountain.
 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.65  TᵢG  replied to  mocowgirl @3.2.64    8 months ago

That nicely cuts to the chase.   jrSmiley_81_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.66  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  mocowgirl @3.2.64    8 months ago

Do leprechauns exist on Mars?  If God exists, God does. 

You might have somewhat of a case if you wanted to compare leprechauns to some people or events in scripture. You have no case if you are comparing leprechauns to the existence of God.  Leprechauns originated in human lore. The existence of God is not predicated on any human activity. 

 
 
 
mocowgirl
Professor Quiet
3.2.67  mocowgirl  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.66    8 months ago
Leprechauns originated in human lore.

So did gods - tens of thousands of them.  

However, if you haven't seen it and want to expand your knowledge of the people and history of the Bible, I highly recommend watching the following lecture series.  These lectures are based on history.  They are not slamming or praising religion.  The people of the Bible are quoted.  I watched around 20 lectures.  Maybe someday I will finish them.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.68  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.66    8 months ago
Do leprechauns exist on Mars?  If God exists, God does. 

Huh? 

Leprechauns originated in human lore.  The existence of God is not predicated on any human activity. 

You think that the thousands of historical god characters did not originate in human lore?  That the Abrahamic god character (aka God) was not defined by human beings based on lore and their imaginations?

If a sentient creator exists then I certainly agree with you that it would not exist due to lore.  It would, as you note, exist in and of itself.   But we have no objective knowledge of such an entity;  we only have the god characters that we have invented as proxies.   We have, at the very best, mere belief.

What I am saying is that a sentient creator might indeed exist and could be beyond our ability to ever sense.   We can believe in its existence, but we have no means to verify its existence; to ascertain the truth of the belief.    To go from belief into fact.

Now, if you disagree, please provide the objective means available to humankind that allow us to verify that a sentient creator objectively exists.   I ask because I am curious since nobody (to my knowledge) has ever delivered that.

NOTE:  This is not an obligation, this is a request.   You have not stated here that God necessarily exists so this is not even a challenge.  

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.69  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.68    8 months ago

Human religions are cultural expressions that originated in various geographic regions. If there is a God there is only one God. By definition God is the supreme being. The, not one of many. 

There is no comparison between leprechauns , which if they were to exist are confined to earth, and a God of  all creation and all universes. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.70  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.69    8 months ago
There is no comparison between leprechauns , which if they were to exist are confined to earth, and a God of  all creation and all universes. 

Did you not see this?:

TiG @3.2.68If a sentient creator exists then I certainly agree with you that it would not exist due to lore.  It would, as you note, exist in and of itself.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.71  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  mocowgirl @3.2.67    8 months ago

Uh, Mc Cowgirl, I don't care.  The existence of God is not predicated on any human beliefs.  A lot of atheists are obsessed with ridiculing and disproving Bible stories.  I couldnt care less. 

You'd have to pay me to watch those videos. 

 
 
 
mocowgirl
Professor Quiet
3.2.72  mocowgirl  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.71    8 months ago
You'd have to pay me to watch those videos. 

So you are uninterested in the history of the people of the Bible from a neutral perspective?

Even Jewish people buy her books and attend her lectures to learn more about their ancestors and the lives of the people who wrote the Torah.

The course is not about bashing the Torah, but about its history.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.2.73  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  mocowgirl @3.2.72    8 months ago
So you are uninterested in the history of the people of the Bible from a neutral perspective?

More or less. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.74  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.71    8 months ago
The existence of God is not predicated on any human beliefs. 

I disagree when speaking of God as defined by the Bible.   That definition of a god character correlates well with lore and the mindset and culture of the ancient authors.    The biblical God is also defined as a contradiction which proves that it does not exist as defined.   The biblical God appears to be yet another proxy for 'sentient creator'.  

A sentient creator might exist, but the biblical God (as defined) cannot exist since it is defined as a contradiction .   A and ~A cannot both be true.

One of the contradictions:   an omniscient entity that is surprised, disappointed and persuaded to take a different course of action.   One cannot know everything (past, present and future) and then learn something.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.75  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.63    8 months ago
A fact is stronger than a conclusion.   A fact, literally, is something that is objectively true.   A conclusion, in contrast, does not have that high bar of truth.   And if by 'conclusion' you are restricting yourself only to the results of a sound formal argument or application of the scientific method, then you have essentially equated 'conclusion' with 'fact'.  (Although even here the conclusion is not necessarily as strong as a fact.   Fact = proven true.) A belief, by normal meaning, is less than a fact.  It is merely the subjective perception that something is true.   One can hold all sorts of beliefs that are false.   Flat Earthers believe the planet is flat.   It is a fact that the Earth is NOT flat.

Are you familiar with the game Wheel of Fortune?  The game involves gathering facts to arrive at a conclusion.  Often the conclusion is presented before all the facts are revealed.  But that conclusion is tested by revealing all the facts.

In real life it's often not possible to test conclusions by revealing all the facts.  The available facts may be correct but the truth of a conclusion will be incomplete because all the facts are not known.  At best, facts represent a partial truth.

Whether the earth is flat, spherical, or something else is a conclusion based upon an assemblage of facts.  The facts cited by Flat Earthers are true.  Each fact may be correct but facts can only be tested for correctness.  The assemblage of true facts into a conclusion are tested for truth.

Facts are measured by correctness; conclusions are measured by truth.  Correctness is not the same as truth.  Truth is not binary as is correct/incorrect or true/false.  Truth is more than correctness.  And conclusions are more than facts.   A conclusion is stronger than a fact because the true facts are assembled into a larger and more expansive truth. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.76  Drakkonis  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.62    8 months ago
Isn't a belief really a conclusion?  Facts support arriving at judgements and decisions as a reasoned conclusion.  Someone saying they have looked at the facts and have concluded a meaning for the assembled facts is really stating a belief.  The distinction between 'I have concluded' and 'I believe' really does split frog hairs.

I agree. You put this beautifully. I've been struggling to find a way to say what you've said here but never managed it. I'm going to be quoting this at times, if you don't mind.  

 
 
 
Ender
Professor Principal
3.2.77  Ender  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.75    8 months ago

Wheel of fortune is basically a guessing game...

 
 
 
mocowgirl
Professor Quiet
3.2.78  mocowgirl  replied to  Ender @3.2.77    8 months ago
Wheel of fortune is basically a guessing game..

constrained to using only our 26 letter alphabet.  The puzzles are usually on a level that makes them highly solvable to anyone with a decent vocabulary and spelling skills. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.79  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.75    8 months ago
The facts cited by Flat Earthers are true.  Each fact may be correct but facts can only be tested for correctness.  The assemblage of true facts into a conclusion are tested for truth

Then you are simply speaking of an invalid argument.   An invalid argument is a formal argument that is structurally flawed.   If flat Earthers provide a list of premises - all of which are true- and conclude that the Earth is flat, they have formulated an argument that is invalid.   The conclusion is thus bogus.

A conclusion is stronger than a fact because the true facts are assembled into a larger and more expansive truth. 

That is only true for conclusions that are based on sound formal logic:

TiG  @3.2.63And if by 'conclusion' you are restricting yourself only to the results of a sound formal argument or application of the scientific method, then you have essentially equated 'conclusion' with 'fact'. 

If one can formally prove a truth (a sound argument:  a valid formal argument whose premises are all objectively true) then that conclusion = fact.   Most conclusions do not pass this bar.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.80  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.76    8 months ago

You can put it any way you wish but ultimately your conclusion depends upon the objective truth of your premises and the validity of your argument form.

You know this.  

So simply saying that you have concluded that God exists does not make it fact.   To generate a conclusion of objective truth you would need a sound argument and I have yet to find any such argument in recorded history.   If you have one, let's hear it.

And if you do not have a sound argument  then your conclusion really is no better than a belief.   Thus if you say 'I just believe' you are on solid ground.   The problem is when you take a belief, argue that it is a conclusion (implying the result of a sound argument) and present it as fact (truth).

A 'beautiful' use of language does not solve that problem.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.81  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.63    8 months ago
A fact, literally, is something that is objectively true.

Facts aren't necessarily objectively true. They are not unchangeable, inviolate things. History is replete with examples of what were once thought to be facts that turned out not to be facts, including in science. It was once considered an objective fact that no star could be bigger than 150 solar masses. You can find plenty of articles that still state this and they will give the facts as to why this is so. Yet if you search for the biggest star by solar mass discovered to date it has a solar mass of 265. 

A fact is stronger than a conclusion.

This is misleading as it makes it seem as facts and conclusions are separate things. They are in fact, interdependent. A fact can't be a fact without concluding it is. For belief about a particular thing to develop into an objective fact a conclusion about it must be made. The idea that facts speak for themselves is wrong, since they are meaningless without some conclusion that derives from them. And, as pointed out above, even concluding something to be a fact doesn't necessarily mean it actually is a fact in reality. 

A belief, by normal meaning, is less than a fact.  It is merely the subjective perception that something is true.

Belief:

an acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists

trust, faith, or confidence in someone or something.

a state or habit of mind in which trust or confidence is placed in some person or thing

something that is accepted, considered to be true, or held as an opinion: something believed

conviction of the truth of some statement or the reality of some being or phenomenon especially when based on examination of evidence

As these definitions point out, a belief is whatever one holds to be true. Therefore, all belief is subjective, including your own. Every single thing you think is true is because you believe it is true. That is the normal meaning of the word. 

What you and Gordy have attempted over the years is to equate "belief" to something like an unfounded, unreasoned religious experience . That is why you repeatedly object to  your position being characterized as one of belief or faith, although those terms apply to you as much as anyone else when used in their actual, normal meaning. For instance, whether you deny it or not, you have faith in science. 

One can hold all sorts of beliefs that are false.

One can also hold things as facts which aren't. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.82  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.81    8 months ago
Facts aren't necessarily objectively true.

( Oxford )  Fact ≡ A thing that is known or proved to be true.

Seems like Oxford offers truth as the first definition of fact.   You seem to want to loosen the meaning of fact for your own purposes.   Not helpful.

They are not unchangeable, inviolate things.

All you are saying is that we sometimes make mistakes and think things are facts when in reality they are not.   The fact would not change, we would just learn that what we thought was a fact was a mistake on our part.

It was once considered an objective fact that no star could be bigger than 150 solar masses.

An example of a mistake.   It was not ever truly an objective fact; we were mistaken.

This is misleading as it makes it seem as facts and conclusions are separate things.

See definition above.   A conclusion is only a fact (as I noted earlier) if it has been proved to be ( or is known [no mistake] to be true — that means definitively ) to be true.

Every single thing you think is true is because you believe it is true.

Correct.   Now where do you find me suggesting otherwise?

What you and Gordy have attempted over the years is to equate "belief" to something like an unfounded, unreasoned religious experience .

This again shows a failure to understand what we are saying.   Let's go with everything is ultimately human perception and thus everything we 'know' is a belief ( in the most common usage of the word ... not the religious usage ).   Agree so far?   So now can you imagine that there are beliefs that are well-founded (based on a preponderance of well-founded sub-beliefs)?   I am sure you can whether or not you admit it.   Now, can you imagine beliefs that are not so well-founded — beliefs based on feelings / desires / indoctrination / fear / ...?

There is your difference Drakk.   A formal proof in the formal system of arithmetic that shows 1 + 1 = 2 produces a proven conclusion (a fact).   That means 1 + 1 = 2 is a fact (best human beings can do).    That is profoundly different from a conclusion that the Christian God exists (as defined) based on ' rings true to me ' or ' I cannot imagine otherwise ' feelings and intuitions.

There are conclusions grounded in solid facts and resulting from sound logic and then there are those that are not.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.83  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.80    8 months ago
So simply saying that you have concluded that God exists does not make it fact.

First, no one simply states God exists, as if there is no underlying reasoning behind it. Second, concluding God doesn't make it a non-fact, either. 

And if you do not have a sound argument  then your conclusion really is no better than a belief.

As mentioned  in my previous post, everything is belief, so you're not saying anything meaningful. Nor do I need a sound argument that satisfies formal philosophy for my conclusion to be valid. All that would be necessary is that God exists. 

The problem is when you take a belief, argue that it is a conclusion (implying the result of a sound argument) and present it as fact (truth).

Um, no. Implying that a conclusion is the result of formal philosophically sound argument is your thing, not mine. That is, it is the criteria your church tries to impose on the argument for it to be valid. Concerning God, the rules of philosophy ultimately must fail because philosophy is a merely human system to try to understand. Philosophy is limited because we are limited. 

In reality, a conclusion in its simplest terms is a judgment or decision reached by reasoning. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.84  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.83    8 months ago
First, no one simply states God exists, as if there is no underlying reasoning behind it.

People claim it all the time;  my point is that merely making the claim does not make it so.    When the underlying reasoning is not provided, all that remains is an unsubstantiated claim.

Second, concluding God doesn't make it a non-fact, either. 

Correct.   Are you implying someone here concludes a sentient creator cannot possibly exist?   If so, show me.

Nor do I need a sound argument that satisfies formal philosophy for my conclusion to be valid. All that would be necessary is that God exists. 

Don't you need a sound argument to have sound underlying reasoning?   You spoke of underlying reasoning that exists for your belief and now are arguing that the only thing that counts is that God exist.   You know, all that is necessary for a belief that the Earth is flat to be true is for the Earth to be flat.  You are not offering anything here.

Concerning God, the rules of philosophy ultimately must fail because philosophy is a merely human system to try to understand. Philosophy is limited because we are limited. 

Well since you are rejecting philosophy what is left?   You believe because you just do?

In reality, a conclusion in its simplest terms is a judgment or decision reached by reasoning. 

So what is the reasoning then?   You do not seem to care about a sound formal process of reasoning.  What is this process that you label as reasoning?   Is 'it seems to ring true' what you mean by reasoning?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.85  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.82    8 months ago
Seems like Oxford offers truth as the first definition of fact.   You seem to want to loosen the meaning of fact for your own purposes.   Not helpful.

In light of everything else I said after this snippet of quote you address you know that wasn't anything like the point I was making. Nice. 

All you are saying is that we sometimes make mistakes and think things are facts when in reality they are not.   The fact would not change, we would just learn that what we thought was a fact was a mistake on our part.

That is not all I'm saying. In fact this has nothing at all to do with it. Whether or not we make mistakes is irrelevant. The point, which you seem to not want to address, is that what once was considered an objective fact was not. 

An example of a mistake.   It was not ever truly an objective fact; we were mistaken.

(sigh) Yes, it is. However, it doesn't change that it was considered an objective fact, based on other known objective facts that led to the false conclusion. 

It was not ever truly an objective fact; we were mistaken.

Oh, yes it was. You see, there's no such thing as an objective fact outside the mind. It takes a mind to even conceive of what a fact is, let alone an objective fact. The minds that "proved" the upper limit of a star's potential mass thought it was an objective fact, bases on a lot of other objective facts. Every single thing you, at this moment, think is an objective fact you believe is an objective fact, even though later it may turn out to be wrong. 

See definition above.   A conclusion is only a fact (as I noted earlier) if it has been proved to be (or is known [no mistake] to be true — that means definitively) to be true.

Your qualifiers are a waste of our time because, as you yourself have said, we can never be 100% certain of anything. That alone tells you that everything you think is true is because you believe it is, even though you know it could be wrong. 

This again shows a failure to understand what we are saying.

Your own words prove that I do understand what you are saying.

Now, can you imagine beliefs that are not so well-founded — beliefs based on feelings / desires / indoctrination / fear / ...?

I do not draw on this conversation alone. I draw on the whole history of our interaction and also things you've said in conversations I wasn't a part of. For you, religious beliefs are nothing more than what you list here, no matter what anyone else tells you. It is what you always reduce it to. 

There is your difference Drakk.   A formal proof in the formal system of arithmetic that shows 1 + 1 = 2 produces a proven conclusion (a fact).   That means 1 + 1 = 2 is a fact (best human beings can do).    That is profoundly different from a conclusion that the Christian God exists (as defined) based on 'rings true to me' or 'I cannot imagine otherwise' feelings and intuitions.

And you prove it again that I do in fact understand what you are saying. You say I do not and then go about proving that I do. Strange. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.86  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.85    8 months ago
The point, which you seem to not want to address, is that what once was considered an objective fact was not. 

You just quoted where I addressed it:

TiG @3.2.82The fact would not change, we would just learn that what we thought was a fact was a mistake on our part.

Addressed ⇡    If we once considered something an objective fact and it turns out that it was not actually true then it never really was an objective fact.

However, it doesn't change that it was considered an objective fact, based on other known objective facts that led to the false conclusion. 

Yes it was considered an objective fact but it was not actually a fact.   Why are we talking about something so obvious?   Take this somewhere relevant.

Oh, yes it was. You see, there's no such thing as an objective fact outside the mind.

I see.  So unless a human mind conceives of something, that something is not objectively true.   That suggest that reality does not actually exist unless perceived by the mind.   So all that is taking place in distant galaxies for which we have zero information is not really taking place?

It was objectively true that the Earth is not the center of the universe even when most everyone on the planet thought it was.   Truth is not a function of the human mind.

That alone tells you that everything you think is true is because you believe it is, even though you know it could be wrong. 

So you are disagreeing with me even when I grant you your notion of belief?    It really is not possible to reason with someone who cannot even detect agreement.

For you, religious beliefs are nothing more than what you list here, no matter what anyone else tells you.

In short, you again offer no answer.

You say I do not and then go about proving that I do.

That is about as vague as one can get.    A great way to avoid a rebuttal ... make an abstract claim and provide no supporting justification for same.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.87  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.84    8 months ago
Are you implying someone here concludes a sentient creator cannot possibly exist?

No, I'm flat out stating that saying "Concluding God exists does not make it fact" is a pointless statement since it doesn't make it a non-fact, either. It doesn't get us anywhere. 

Don't you need a sound argument to have sound underlying reasoning?   

If you mean in the philosophical sense of "sound", no, not when it comes to the subject of God. First, a sound argument is really just a philosophical exercise. It seldom has any practical applications. For instance, look at the philosophical problem of evil. A lot of brilliant minds have put a lot of work into that issue, on both sides, but you don't see any universally accepted conclusions. public policy enacted because of those conclusions or even public impact beyond opinion for the few who even know of the existence of the argument. 

Second, coming up with a sound argument for the color of Mrs. Largebottom's cat is simple enough but it is an entirely different thing to try to come up with one for God, either for or against. It would be more like coming up with a sound argument for whether Schrodinger's cat was alive or dead without opening the box.  

You know, all that is necessary for a belief that the Earth is flat to be true is for the Earth to be flat.  You are not offering anything here.

Actually I am. And you just confirmed it. We wouldn't need a sound argument for a flat earth. It just has to be flat. That was the point. 

Well since you are rejecting philosophy what is left?   You believe because you just do?

No, I have reasons I've listed numerous times before but you apparently don't remember. Things like argument from morality, the cosmological argument, fine tuning, my relationship with God and others. Perhaps more importantly, I see, or am continuously learning what God wants from me and why and it convinces me that no human could have come up with it. It simply isn't in our nature. 

It should be noted that what you think of those things is irrelevant. What is relevant is that they are part of what convinces me. They are why I don't "just believe."

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.88  Nerm_L  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.76    8 months ago
I agree. You put this beautifully. I've been struggling to find a way to say what you've said here but never managed it. I'm going to be quoting this at times, if you don't mind.  

I don't mind.  Besides I cannot hold a trademark on an idea that seems rather universal.  You're a thinker so I'm confident that you'll explore and expand on my crude presentation.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.89  Nerm_L  replied to  Ender @3.2.77    8 months ago
Wheel of fortune is basically a guessing game...

Ah, but the guesses are used to reveal facts.  The available facts are used to arrive at a conclusion before all the facts are revealed.  The presented conclusion isn't a guess; it's a deduction made from available facts.  

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.90  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.86    8 months ago
Yes it was considered an objective fact but it was not actually a fact.  

Yes, that is obvious.

Why are we talking about something so obvious?   Take this somewhere relevant.

I would except you keep refusing to understand  what an objective fact is. Evidence: 

If we once considered something an objective fact and it turns out that it was not actually true then it never really was an objective fact .

Factual things don't label themselves as objective facts. That is something humans do to categorize what kind of fact we're talking about. When someone talks about an objective fact, they are saying that this fact is true in a manner that subjective experience cannot change it. So saying that a fact was never really objective fact is flat wrong because it was considered objective before falsification. It was an objective fact because that was the category in which we placed it. Now, having disproved the prior fact, the new one is claimed to be objective fact. Not because it necessarily is an actual fact, but because it is believed to be. 

And before you accuse me of taking us down this rabbit hole to no purpose, remember what I was responding to: 

A fact, literally, is something that is objectively true. 3.2.63

My response was: 

Facts aren't necessarily objectively true. They are not unchangeable, inviolate things. History is replete with examples of what were once thought to be facts that turned out not to be facts, including in science. It was once considered an objective fact that no star could be bigger than 150 solar masses. You can find plenty of articles that still state this and they will give the facts as to why this is so. Yet if you search for the biggest star by solar mass discovered to date it has a solar mass of 265. 3.2.81

Rather than simply concede the point, you had to take us here. 

In an attempt to get back to the actual point, I made the distinction as part of my effort to show that beliefs are really just conclusions (thanks Nerm!) we've made about something given certain information. Specifically, that even though you think your view is driven by objective facts, it's really a belief, or conclusion given what you consider to be objective facts, but may not be. Therefore, the difference between a believer in God and a believer of your persuasion isn't all that great. 

I see.  So unless a human mind conceives of something, that something is not objectively true. That suggest that reality does not actually exist unless perceived by the mind.   So all that is taking place in distant galaxies for which we have zero information is not really taking place?

Apparently you don't. A thing is objectively true if we label it as such according to certain standards. It is a classification, not something that makes a fact extra facty. 

It was objectively true that the Earth is not the center of the universe even when most everyone on the planet thought it was.   Truth is not a function of the human mind.

Pick a term, TiG. Truth is indeed not a function of the human mind, except the capacity to understand the concept. However, objective truth is. Let's define objective truth. 

The claim that the earth was not the center of the universe was not objectively true in their day because it wasn't confirmable. While it was true that it was not the center, it wasn't objectively true. 

So you are disagreeing with me even when I grant you your notion of belief?    It really is not possible to reason with someone who cannot even detect agreement.

That isn't what this is about, although I'm happy to see you agree about belief. It is that if you can be made to understand what objective truth is, or more accurately, to understand the limitations of it, you will find the basis of your beliefs over mine not as strong as they seem to you now. That is, in your arguments, here and elsewhere, you wield "objective facts" as if they were some immovable rock that gives your arguments extra validity. They really don't. They are just things you believe to be true. 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.91  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.79    8 months ago
Then you are simply speaking of an invalid argument.   An invalid argument is a formal argument that is structurally flawed.   If flat Earthers provide a list of premises - all of which are true- and conclude that the Earth is flat, they have formulated an argument that is invalid.   The conclusion is thus bogus.

Well, stated more completely, Flat Earthers have assembled true facts into a conclusion presented as truth.  That's sort of based on the idea that true facts can only lead to a conclusion that is truth.  The truth of Flat Earther's conclusion is compared to the truth of other conclusions derived from the same true facts or additional true facts.

The Flat Earther's conclusion is valid within the confines of the chosen true facts.  Flat Earthers demonstrate that true facts can lead to an illusion of truth.  Testing the truth of Flat Earther's conclusion requires thinking outside the box of chosen true facts.  So, (using an admitted over simplification and obvious catchphrase presentation of the idea) testing truth requires thinking outside the box.

If one can formally prove a truth (a sound argument:  a valid formal argument whose premises are all objectively true) then that conclusion = fact.   Most conclusions do not pass this bar.

All conclusions are valid within the confines of the chosen true facts.  Objectively true facts can also mislead to conclusions (beliefs) that are not truth.  So, a conclusion cannot be a fact; a conclusion must be a truth.  IMO the distinction is significant.  Objectively true facts are not sufficient to test truth.  Testing truth requires reason, deliberation, and rational thought that extends beyond objectively true facts.

Testing truth requires an indeterminate quality and capability that cannot be quantified or predicted.  Knowledge, alone, can mislead.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.92  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.87    8 months ago
No, I'm flat out stating that saying "Concluding God exists does not make it fact" is a pointless statement since it doesn't make it a non-fact, either. It doesn't get us anywhere. 

Not really debatable.   And why bring it up since I do not see anyone claiming that concluding God does not exist means it is not a fact (unless, of course, the God is defined as a contradiction).

If you mean in the philosophical sense of "sound", no, not when it comes to the subject of God.

Absolutely yes I am speaking of sound argument per propositional logic.

First, a sound argument is really just a philosophical exercise. It seldom has any practical applications.

Good grief.   Ever consider the notion of a legal argument?   How about working through a logical problem?   In my field we routinely produce working models based on mathematics and logic.   The concept of a sound argument is at the core of modern computing technology:  communications protocols, security procedures, etc.  An algorithm that is not based on the concept of a sound argument will commonly manifest in something we call a 'bug' or a 'glitch'.

For instance, look at the philosophical problem of evil. A lot of brilliant minds have put a lot of work into that issue, on both sides, but you don't see any universally accepted conclusions. public policy enacted because of those conclusions or even public impact beyond opinion for the few who even know of the existence of the argument.   Imagine the whole of Engineering not being concerned about true premises and formal reasoning methods being used in the design of buildings, etc?

The fact that abstract philosophers have pondered deeply academic questions and have failed to come to a solid conclusion is a pretty weak basis for categorically deeming sound arguments to "seldom" have "any practical applications".  

Second, coming up with a sound argument for the color of Mrs. Largebottom's cat is simple enough but it is an entirely different thing to try to come up with one for God, either for or against. It would be more like coming up with a sound argument for whether Schrodinger's cat was alive or dead without opening the box.  

I agree that it would be profoundly difficult to produce a sound argument for the existence or inexistence of God when God is defined in abstract terms such as:  eternal sentient creator.    Thus far, to my knowledge (and I have searched), nobody has been successful in this endeavor.

Actually I am. And you just confirmed it. We wouldn't need a sound argument for a flat earth. It just has to be flat. That was the point. 

If your point is that there are some things that are true then we have never disagreed on that.   Does anyone disagree on that??    But we do not know if something is true until we can observe and analyze same.   You agree, right?   So where, ultimately, is this taking us?   Are we agreeing or disagreeing on something?  

No, I have reasons I've listed numerous times before but you apparently don't remember.

Or I am asking you to make contemporary comments in this context because this, right here, is the active discussion.

Things like argument from morality, the cosmological argument, fine tuning, my relationship with God and others. Perhaps more importantly, I see, or am continuously learning what God wants from me and why and it convinces me that no human could have come up with it. It simply isn't in our nature. 

You actually are influenced by the cosmological argument as an argument for the Christian God?:

1.  Whatever begins to exist has a cause.

2.  The Universe began to exist.

⛬  the Universe had a cause.

The conclusion is simply that something (of unspecified nature) caused our universe to come into existence (taken to mean:  'form' as opposed to 'poof into existence out of nothing').

There is nothing in this argument that suggests sentience.  Nothing that necessitates omniscience, omnipotence, etc.   No requirement of eternal or perfect or really anything that points to the Christian God.

This argument identifies quantum fluctuation and (in effect) anything else we might speculate as a plausible cause for the universe.  

How can you find this persuasive as an argument or even a partial hint for the existence of the Christian God?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.93  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.90    8 months ago
Yes, that is obvious.

Good!

When someone talks about an objective fact, they are saying that this fact is true in a manner that subjective experience cannot change it.

Objective truth = truth that is independent of human subjective perception.   Independent of the perceiving subject.

So saying that a fact was never really objective fact is flat wrong because it was considered objective before falsification.

Considered is the operative word.   People considered the Earth to be the center of the universe as an objective fact.   But, in reality, it was not a fact at all.   It was a falsehood;  it was not an objective fact because it was not even a fact.    It was simply perceived as such.

If something is false it cannot be a fact.   If something is not a fact, qualifying it with adjectives will not make it a fact.  

And before you accuse me of taking us down this rabbit hole to no purpose, remember what I was responding to: 
A fact, literally, is something that is objectively true . 3.2.63

' objectively true ' = not subjectively true = true, independent of human perception = hard-core true

Do you or do you not recognize that there exist truths in reality independent of human perception?   That even if there were no sentient entities in the entire universe, these truths would exist?

The Earth is not the center of the universe is true independent of any human perception.   It is objectively (as in NOT subjectively) true.

Coincidentally this popped up when I decided to provide a third party opinion to try to get you to consider what I have written.   It even includes the example I have been using with you so it is perfect:

And why is this particular word —objective— used for this purpose? Its use reflects the fact that truth and falsity are conferred on statements and beliefs by their objects, by what theyre about: the earth and the sun and how they move in relation to each other; my gut and whats going on in it. The words objective truth are a reminder that the truth of a belief or statement is entirely a matter of how things are with its object, and has nothing to do with the state of its subject — the person who has the belief or makes the statement.

The author is full of shit, right?

Facts aren't necessarily objectively true. They are not unchangeable, inviolate things. History is replete with examples of what were once thought to be facts that turned out not to be facts, including in science. It was once considered an objective fact that no star could be bigger than 150 solar masses. You can find plenty of articles that still state this and they will give the facts as to why this is so. Yet if you search for the biggest star by solar mass discovered to date it has a solar mass of 265.

Facts are necessarily objectively true (see above).   Truth is not changeable; but reality is.   If the Earth is NOT the center of the universe at the time the claim is made, that is an objective fact that does not change.    If the entire universe reoriented itself a million years in the future so that Earth became the center of the universe then the objective truth for that state of reality (for that time) is that the Earth is the center of the universe.   That does not make the earlier fact wrong;  it is still true that at the time of the claim the Earth absolutely was NOT the center of the universe.

Truth does not change.  Reality changes over time and every fact (every truth) is true only for the state of reality in which it is claimed.  

Again, your example of 150 solar masses was not even true when stated.   Us learning later that what was perceived as truth was really a falsehood does not in any way suggest that a fact has changed.   It is our perception that changed.   The non-fact was a falsehood then and is a falsehood now (just accepting your example, by the way).

Pick a term, TiG.

Already did:  objective truth .   See link above to one of many third parties that will corroborate my correct usage of this term.   If you cannot deal with this term then let's just call it 'absolute truth' where absolute truth = 'truth that is independent of the perception of an observer'.   After all, I am just trying to get you to accept the notion that there are truths and falsehoods that are true and false, respectively, even if no sentient minds existed.   Really have to work hard to get you to agree to even the most obvious notions.   And if that does not work, then you pick the term.

The claim that the earth was not the center of the universe was not objectively true in their day because it wasn't confirmable.

So now you add a new criterion:  an objective truth must be 'comfirm-able'.   This really is ridiculous.    You ignore even in your source the notion of ' true for everyone ' that does not stipulate confirmation by any sentient mind.   Further your source is a general definition for objectivity when I have been talking about objective truth.   The two are not the same notions.

What term will you accept to connote  that which is true independent of any observer ?  

It is that if you can be made to understand what objective truth is, or more accurately, to understand the limitations of it, you will find the basis of your beliefs over mine not as strong as they seem to you now.

Drakk, you are the one who has the strange definition of 'objective truth'. 

And now do not use the word 'beliefs' when comparing my positions and your religious beliefs.   That is crossing usages.   I figured you would do this as soon as decided to graciously use belief to express a human perception.  

My position with respect to a sentient creator is that the evidence does not support the hypothesis.  It does not contradict the hypothesis either.   But given all that we have learned of reality and how it works, there does not seem to be any reason to hypothesis a sentient creator.   If we see reasons in the future I would be thrilled to openly consider them.   You, in contrast, have a religious belief.   You believe not only in a sentient creator, but one with very specific attributes, personality, intentions, promises and stories of exploits.    To believe something so specific and grand without any supporting evidence is remarkable.   But it is rather clear that my position:  " I am not convinced a sentient creator exists " is on substantially stronger grounds than your belief that the Christian God (as per the Bible) actually exists.

That is, in your arguments, here and elsewhere, you wield "objective facts" as if they were some immovable rock that gives your arguments extra validity. They really don't. They are just things you believe to be true. 

Objectively true , not objective facts.   That which one believes true are subjective truths.   To be objectively true, they would need to be absolutely true regardless of human perception.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.94  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.92    8 months ago
Good grief.   Ever consider the notion of a legal argument?   How about working through a logical problem?   In my field we routinely produce working models based on mathematics and logic.   The concept of a sound argument is at the core of modern computing technology:  communications protocols, security procedures, etc.  An algorithm that is not based on the concept of a sound argument will commonly manifest in something we call a 'bug' or a 'glitch'.

Which is why I said:

If you mean in the philosophical sense of "sound", no, not when it comes to the subject of God .

That doesn't state that knowing how to make a sound argument has no use at all. Your example of computer tech is not, in my mind, a philosophical example. It is a practical example of a process and it's not an argument in the philosophical sense in that the correctness of the argument within the programming isn't a matter of debate but whether it runs correctly or not. 

This is different from purely philosophical problems in the sense we are talking about. No one is ever going to come up with a philosophically sound argument either for or against God that will be considered objectively true. That isn't true of computers. Arguments used within computing are not a matter of debate but, rather, whether it works or not. There's no uncertainty in it. 

The fact that abstract philosophers have pondered deeply academic questions and have failed to come to a solid conclusion is a pretty weak basis for categorically deeming sound arguments to "seldom" have "any practical applications".

It only seems that way because you included things which I did not. I specifically said, " not when it comes to God ." Everything after that was said in that context. If we restrict it to what I actually said rather than add all the stuff you did in order to make a false point, we see that what I said is true. What practical application has come from any sound argument concerning God can you name?  You appear to agree with this in your next statement. 

I agree that it would be profoundly difficult to produce a sound argument for the existence or inexistence of God when God is defined in abstract terms such as:  eternal sentient creator.    Thus far, to my knowledge (and I have searched), nobody has been successful in this endeavor.

If your point is that there are some things that are true then we have never disagreed on that.

No, my point is that to put what one believes to be true into a philosophically sound argument is not a necessary condition to justify belief. That is, it may be for you but that is a personal decision on your part. 

But we do not know if something is true until we can observe and analyze same.   You agree, right?

Obviously not. To be sure, I do agree if we are talking about phenomena concerning our existence within this universe, but I cannot, nor anyone else on earth, observe or analyze God in the manner I believe you intend. And if your intent is focused on the highlighted portion of the quote it should not need to be pointed out by now that even if we are speaking about natural phenomena, we're really in the same boat, since we can't know with certainty the things we believe to be facts actually are. 

Seeing it this way doesn't make me a postmodernist, who don't think ultimate truth can actually be nailed down, which I feel explains a lot of what's going on in this country today. Someone is successfully indoctrinating post modernism into our culture and it is destroying us. "My opinion" has morphed into "my truth" as if it were whatever you want it to be and so on. 

Rather, I feel we should do our best to determine objective truth to the best of our ability, even though we recognize it could possibly turn out to be wrong. There's no point in operating any other way. Where you and I differ is not everything (or so I believe) can be examined in the way we might examine an electron or dark matter. I do believe there is more than the material universe. Obviously, scientific methods won't be of any use in proving that, so other methods must be used to decide what one believes about it. Inference, deduction and subjective experience to name some of them. 

You actually are influenced by the cosmological argument as an argument for the Christian God?

Yes. Influenced is actually an apt term for it, too. That is, as you point out, there is nothing in the argument itself that points to God so it isn't quite  the argument itself that convinces me. However, there is a bit more to it than you're suggesting. 

The cosmological argument is less a particular argument than an argument type. It uses a general pattern of argumentation ( logos ) that makes an inference from particular alleged facts about the universe ( cosmos ) to the existence of a unique being, generally identified with or referred to as God. Among these initial facts are that particular beings or events in the universe are causally dependent or contingent, that the universe (as the totality of contingent things) is contingent in that it could have been other than it is or not existed at all, that the Big Conjunctive Contingent Fact possibly has an explanation, or that the universe came into being. From these facts philosophers and theologians argue deductively, inductively, or abductively by inference to the best explanation that a first cause, sustaining cause, unmoved mover, necessary being, or personal being (God) exists that caused and/or sustains the universe. The cosmological argument is part of classical natural theology, whose goal is to provide evidence for the claim that God exists.

This argument identifies quantum fluctuation and (in effect) anything else we might speculate as a plausible cause for the universe.

Since it doesn't actually identify any causes at all, I am thinking you mean to say that quantum fluctuation is also a plausible cause. If so, that would be correct. However, the argument is much more complex than what you've reduced it to, as the link above will explain if you are interested in the quite long article. 

How can you find this persuasive as an argument or even a partial hint for the existence of the Christian God?

Because it is not something I consider in isolation, but as part of the aggregate of the whole body of evidence I consider. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.95  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.94    8 months ago
No one is ever going to come up with a philosophically sound argument either for or against God that will be considered objectively true.

Maybe you should just stick with that specific statement and not generalize.   If you change the words 'is ever going to' to 'has' and strike 'that will be considered objectively true' we would agree.

This yields:  No one has come up with a philosophically sound argument either for or against God.   I am not going to presume that this is impossible.  If you want to go with impossible then we will not agree on that point.

No, my point is that to put what one believes to be true into a philosophically sound argument is not a necessary condition to justify belief.

Sure, if you want to use the loose usage of 'justify' where someone could 'justify' killing someone because the devil told them to do it.   With that usage, one can pretty much 'justify' anything.

... but I cannot, nor anyone else on earth, observe or analyze God in the manner I believe you intend.

You do not observe and analyze God?   Literally now, if you nothing to go on regarding God then what would cause you to believe?    I am not speaking of you putting God in a laboratory and running tests.   I am talking about you perceiving God (in various ways), analyzing and drawing a conclusion.   Clearly you do that.

Stated differently, if you had no information (true or false) about 'God', why would you believe 'God' exists?

Rather, I feel we should do our best to determine objective truth to the best of our ability, even though we recognize it could possibly turn out to be wrong.

I agree with that!!

I do believe there is more than the material universe.

Given I have seen nothing that suggests this I am not persuaded to believe it.   The only information I have on this is what ordinary religiously inclined people merely claim.   That is, of course, entirely not persuasive.

Since it doesn't actually identify any causes at all, I am thinking you mean to say that quantum fluctuation is also a plausible cause.

Quantum fluctuation was the one example I used when I was stating "anything else we might speculate as a plausible cause".   My language was clear.

Because it is not something I consider in isolation ...

Yes, I know, but it influences you in part (as I noted:  partial hint).  I find that strange since the argument only concludes cause and effect for that which comes into existence.   The conclusion is so general as to be obvious and is not discriminating.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.96  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.91    8 months ago
Flat Earthers demonstrate that true facts can lead to an illusion of truth.

Yes, people kid themselves all the time.   Another prime example of this is the phenomenon of confirmation bias wherein an individual accepts only that which supports their bias and rejects all information to the contrary.   It is illusion shaping.

That is why formal logic is so important when trying to get to the truth.   It is a guideline that helps our strange minds focus and engage in much more objective reasoning.

All conclusions are valid within the confines of the chosen true facts.

No that is not true.   An argument with entirely true premises may be invalid (a flawed structure) such as:

1.   A PotUS must be 35 years of age or older.
2.   Pee Wee Herman must be 35 years of age or older.
∴   Pee Wee Herman is president of the United States.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.97  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.93    8 months ago
The author is full of shit, right?

No. The author is saying exactly what I've been saying all along. The problem is that you are conflating truth with objective truth or fact or whatever word you want to use. Let's look at your quote again, only I will highlight what you are missing. 

And why is this particular word —objective— used for this purpose? Its use reflects the fact that truth and falsity are conferred on statements and beliefs by their objects, by what they're about: the earth and the sun and how they move in relation to each other; my gut and what's going on in it. The words objective truth are a reminder that the truth of a belief or statement is entirely a matter of how things are with its object, and has nothing to do with the state of its subject— the person who has the belief or makes the statement.

It may be a fact that on some planet that is in a galaxy so far away and moving so fast we'll never see the light from it has a race of intelligent unicorns on it. However, it will never be an objective fact to us here on earth. Only facts we know about can have the adverb "objective" conferred on it.  

Put another way, you can't have an objective fact without stating what the fact is or how could you know it is objective? You can't state that the intelligent unicorns are an objective fact because you don't know it's a fact at all. If you try, all you end up with is a subjective fact, even if those unicorns know they exist.  

Further, "Its use reflects the fact that truth and falsity are conferred on statements and beliefs by their objects..." isn't literally true and doesn't mean objective truth is determined apart from human input. It is only a figure of speech meaning the sum total of what we know about the object determines whether it is objectively true. If the object did literally confer objectivity, it would never be that one day it is objectively true that a star can only be x big and the next day not. 

Facts are necessarily objectively true (see above).

Not so. A fact can be subjectively true at first and then become objectively true later. We see it in science all the time. Someone does an experiment and says, based on the results of her test, X is true. She is absolutely sure her findings are objectively true. No one is going to take  that as an objective fact until someone, or several someone's repeat the experiment, possibly a number of times and see if they get the same results. Then, they will analyze their data on the test to see the originator's explanation of why X is true matches their data and explanation. 

The problem I see with how you view all of this is that you seem to be referring to the idea that, ultimately, there is only one truth about every material thing in our universe, which I tend to agree with, mostly (Holographic universe theory makes me wonder if even that idea about truth is as solid as we think it is). However, we can't operate on a basis of 100% assurance because we aren't perfect, omniscient or intelligent enough for that sort of thing. 

So, what I am trying to get you to realize about objective facts is that, because we can't be 100% sure about anything, the best we can do concerning objective facts is to say they represent the best understanding of what is true given our limitations. 

I'm not going to bother with the rest of your post since I'll just be repeating what I've already said, ad nauseum. Looks like we're just going to disagree. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
3.2.98  sandy-2021492  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.2    8 months ago
As the reviewer says, "Religion knows about the transcendent experience.

Religion believes.  The reviewer's language is imprecise.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.99  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.97    8 months ago
The problem is that you are conflating truth with objective truth.

Not conflating:  equating.   I have been trying to get you to understand that when I speak of truth I am speaking of objective truth (in contrast to subjective truth).   I am speaking of that which is true even if no sentient mind perceives it.   For example, our planet is not the center of the universe.   That is an objective truth — it would true even if no sentient life forms existed.    Or, using my source's language, if no subject existed.   Earth = object;  observer = subject = the person holding the belief or making the claim.

The author is saying exactly what I've been saying all along.

Fascinating.

I have stated that objective truth is independent of the observer.   Now read again the words of my source:

The words objective truth are a reminder that the truth of a belief or statement is entirely a matter of how things are with its object, and has nothing to do with the state of its subject— the person who has the belief or makes the statement.

Truth is independent of ["has nothing to do with the state of"] the subject.  The subject is the person holding the belief or making the statement.


You highlight that "truth is conferred on statements and beliefs by their objects" yet somehow do not understand that the author is saying that truth is a function of the state of the object, not a function of the observer.   Objective truth is independent of the observer.   The author did not write: "truth is conferred on statements and beliefs by the state of the subject".   

Don't know what more to say here other than it illustrates how you are able to read whatever you want into clear language that states the opposite of what you wish.   Interesting to see you do it with a third party;  that suggests you do this without even realizing it.   In other words, maybe some of the games I see you playing are not intentional.   You might just not realize that sometimes you are reading what you want to read even if the words you read state the opposite.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
3.2.100  sandy-2021492  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.66    8 months ago
Leprechauns originated in human lore. The existence of God is not predicated on any human activity.

That is an unsubstantiated claim.  Well, except for the leprechauns portion.  Both likely originated in human lore.

 
 
 
Ender
Professor Principal
3.2.101  Ender  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.2.100    8 months ago

But, hobbits were real....

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
3.2.102  sandy-2021492  replied to  Ender @3.2.101    8 months ago

I saw them, too.  And elves, dwarves, orcs, wizards, Ents, and a Balroc.

 
 
 
Ender
Professor Principal
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
3.2.104  sandy-2021492  replied to  Ender @3.2.103    8 months ago

Looks like they might have been migrating toward New Zealand in preparation for filming.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.105  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.99    8 months ago
Not conflating:  equating.   I have been trying to get you to understand that when I speak of truth I am speaking of objective truth (in contrast to subjective truth).   I am speaking of that which is true even if no sentient mind perceives it.

They are not equal things. If objective truth and truth are the same thing, you're essentially saying the same thing as true truth. That simply doesn't make sense. It's redundant. 

If a planet of intelligent unicorns exists, it exists in truth, whether we know about it or not. But you can't differentiate it from a subjective truth unless you know it is a fact. It's that simple, TiG. If some alien species whipped me off in their ludicrous speed space ship and showed me the planet exists and brought me back, are you going to accept the planet is an objective fact because I told you it is? Of course not. That's because a fact cannot be objective until enough people have had the opportunity to examine the evidence that supports a fact being objective. 

You highlight that "truth is conferred on statements and beliefs by their objects" yet somehow do not understand that the author is saying that truth is a function of the state of the object, not a function of the observer.

For goodness sake, TiG, do you think the author was speaking literally? It is a figure of speech. The sun doesn't literally confer objectivity on the statement "the sun is the center of our solar system" because it's a sun. It just does sun things. It isn't aware because it doesn't have a mind, so it doesn't do any conferring. What the author of the quote is actually saying is that a statement or a belief, which can only come from a mind, comes not literally from the object itself, as if it were sentient and telling us about itself, he's saying that what we learn about the nature of a thing determines whether the statements or beliefs are objective truths. It is our ability to recognize from available data that, regardless of how we might feel about it, the sun is indeed the center of our solar system, and because we recognize it, we classify it as an objective fact. Look at the quote again:

Its use reflects the fact that truth and falsityare conferred on statements and beliefs by their objects, by what they're about: the earth and the sun and how they move in relation to each other; my gut and what's going on in it.

Objective facts aren't simply floating around through space and time, waiting to intersect with an intelligent mind to settle into. We can only know what the object is about, the earth and the sun and how they move in relationship to each other, what goes on in the gut and so on, if we study and examine them. That there is a sun is a fairly easy fact to establish. Same with the earth. The discovery about their relationship to each other comes harder but doable, as has been proven. It is actually those things that we learn about the sun and the earth that actually confers objectivity on a belief or statement, not the object itself, unless your using it figuratively, as does the author. 

Put another way, the claim that the sun is the center of the universe is an objective fact is not conferred on the statement by the sun. If that were so, no one would have once thought the earth was the center of the universe, let alone the center of our solar system. It took a lot of observation, other facts and various scientific methods, all of which it took humans to do, to establish that the sun being the center of our solar system is an objective fact. And what we mean by objective is that any reasonable person who can look at the data will also come to the same conclusion and could not arrive at any other because the data doesn't allow for personal, subjective interpretation. 

Further, the author doesn't state that objective truth has nothing at all to do with the subject making the statement or professing a belief. 

and has nothing to do with the state of its subject— the person who has the belief or makes the statement.

Rather, the author states that it has nothing to do with the state of the subject. What he means is, objective truth is what it is, regardless of the subject's biases, preferences, subjective experience or whatever else. He does not state that the subject has no involvement whatsoever in determining objective truth because a determination of objective truth can only be made by the subject after examining relevant data and evidence. 

Right now there's a fairly large number of scientists that think that dark matter and dark energy are facts (You don't spend the kind of money being spent on trying to find some of it if you didn't think they were). But they are not objective facts. To be sure, there is some fact out there concerning them, even if we don't know what that fact is, precisely. That fact could range from what most scientists suspect dark matter to be to it not existing at all, but whatever the fact is, it won't be objective until a fact is presented that is recognizably true for anyone who examines it. It's that last part that makes it an objective fact, not simply that it is a fact and why a fact and objective fact aren't the same thing. 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.106  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.96    8 months ago
Yes, people kid themselves all the time.   Another prime example of this is the phenomenon of confirmation bias wherein an individual accepts only that which supports their bias and rejects all information to the contrary.   It is illusion shaping. That is why formal logic is so important when trying to get to the truth.   It is a guideline that helps our strange minds focus and engage in much more objective reasoning.

That's why I introduced astrology and Feng Shui into the discussion.  Are astrology and Feng Shui science or religion?

Astrology and Feng Shui have all the characteristics associated with science.  Astrology and Feng Shui have none of the characteristics associated with theist religion.  Based on those chosen facts, astrology and Feng Shui are science and not religion.  But the purpose of astrology and Feng Shui does not correspond to the purpose for science and do correspond to the purpose for religion.  Astrology and Feng Shui appear to represent science used for religious purposes.   

What differentiates astrology and Feng Shui from climate science, evolutionary science, social science, and the search for the origin of life?  They all observe the universe and use the scientific method to determine causal relationships.  They all generate true facts.  All these science based activities produce conclusions from observation of causal relationships and make predictions that can be tested and are falsifiable.  Simple deductive logic, as you've illustrated, would lead to a conclusion that all these science based activities are quite similar.

People kid themselves all the time that methods of science to generate true facts can only lead to truth.  But as astrology and Feng Shui demonstrate, the purpose for generating the true facts is also important in assessing truth.    

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.107  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.105    8 months ago
What he means is, objective truth is what it is, regardless of the subject's biases, preferences, subjective experience or whatever else.

How is it possible that you cannot see that this is what I have been telling you all along??   'regardless of' = 'independent of'

I have been telling you, repeatedly,  that when I speak of objective truth I am talking about truth in its most essential form:  independent of any observer.   I have used the term absolute truth and you ignored it.  I have asked you to pick whatever term you want and you just continue to argue tangents.  

Since you seem to now agree that objective truth = "That which is true independent of any observer" I am delivering my original point @3.2.80 but further simplified:

The quality of a conclusion is a function of the objective truth of the premises and the validity of the argument form in use.

Thus merely stating that you have concluded God exists does not make your conclusion objective truth.   Your argument must be valid and your premises must be objective truth.

I have yet to find any such argument in recorded history.   If you have one, let's hear it.

And if you do not have the aforementioned sound argument  then your conclusion is no better than a belief.   Thus if you say 'I just believe' you are on solid ground.   The problem is when you take a belief, argue that it is a conclusion (implying the result of a sound argument) and present it as objective truth.

So offer your sound argument that concludes God exists.    I predict your argument will be unsound.    If sound, you will be the first in recorded history to accomplish this feat (to my knowledge).

Note:  if a premise is false, it is ipso facto NOT objective truth.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.108  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @3.2.106    8 months ago
Are astrology and Feng Shui science or religion?

Answered.   see @8.3.2 and @8.3.4:

TiG @8.3.4 ☞ If we were to take the predictions of Astrology, for example, that came true compared to those that did not come true, would you expect Astrology to be 90% correct?   ... 50% ... 10%.   Give me a gauge on what you think qualifies as being predictive when compared to a scientific theory (which of course is the predictive meaning I am talking about).
NOTE:  A scientific theory that produces the wrong prediction for that which it should have predicted is considered to be a broken theory and is either scrapped or reworked.   

Especially look at my NOTE above.   One wrong prediction and science will scrap or rework a theory.   That is the bar for science.   For you to even ask if Astrology is science is ridiculous on the onset.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.109  Nerm_L  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.105    8 months ago
They are not equal things. If objective truth and truth are the same thing, you're essentially saying the same thing as true truth. That simply doesn't make sense. It's redundant. 

What is actually being equated is the idea that objective facts represent objective truth.  The Earth is not the center of the universe is an objectively true fact.  

The argument is based upon the idea that facts are the same as truth and that the objectivity of the fact conveys objectivity onto truth.  It's a false equivalency.

Objectively true facts can mislead to an untruth as easily as lead to a truth.  That observation refutes the false equivalency that facts are truth.

If a planet of intelligent unicorns exists, it exists in truth, whether we know about it or not.

I disagree.  The existence of a planet of intelligent unicorns would be a true fact regardless of our knowledge.  That fact does not represent any sort of truth; the fact is either correct or incorrect.

IMO truth cannot be defined in a binary manner as either correct or incorrect.  That's why understanding truth, particularly objective truth, can be extraordinarily challenging.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.110  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.107    8 months ago
How is it possible that you cannot see that this is what I have been telling you all along??   'regardless of' = 'independent of' I have been telling you, repeatedly,  that when I speak of objective truth I am talking about truth in its most essential form:  independent of any observer.

Because it isn't what you've been arguing all along or even now. Truth or fact is no more independent from an observer than right and wrong, good and bad. These concepts can only exist for an observer and not on their own. Objective truth or fact does not exist independently of an observer, they exist independent of an observer's desires, biases, expectations, prejudices or anything else like that. Figure it out.

Since you seem to now agree that objective truth = " That which is true independent of any observer " I am delivering my original point @ 3.2.80 but further simplified:

Wow. Nice, TiG. Really nice. So you're just going to pretend we are agreeing about this, aren't you? About all I can say to that is it's a great example of subjective truth. Good job.

So offer your sound argument that concludes God exists.    I predict your argument will be unsound.

Another subjective truth, implying that I ever said a sound argument that was objectively true could be made rather than stating earlier the opposite.

This is different from purely philosophical problems in the sense we are talking about. No one is ever going to come up with a philosophically sound argument either for or against God that will be considered objectively true. 3.2.94

It's pretty obvious you've run out of imaginative ways to deny what is obviously true and are just declaring victory. Enjoy your subjective truth. 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
PhD Principal
3.2.111  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.108    8 months ago
Answered.   see @8.3.2 and @8.3.4:
TiG @8.3.4 ☞ If we were to take the predictions of Astrology, for example, that came true compared to those that did not come true, would you expect Astrology to be 90% correct?   ... 50% ... 10%.   Give me a gauge on what you think qualifies as being predictive when compared to a scientific theory (which of course is the predictive meaning I am talking about).
NOTE:  A scientific theory that produces the wrong prediction for that which it should have predicted is considered to be a broken theory and is either scrapped or reworked.   
Especially look at my NOTE above.   One wrong prediction and science will scrap or rework a theory.   That is the bar for science.   For you to even ask if Astrology is science is ridiculous on the onset.

I do not know how often the predictions of astrology are correct.  The complicating factor is that the predictions of astrology (and Feng Shui) influence the indeterminate behavior of humans.  Humans can alter their behavior to according to the predictions which will affect reliability of the predictions.  Astrology and Feng Shui would be comparable to other sciences involving human behavior; medical sciences or behavioral sciences.

Medical science may scrap a theory but that doesn't alter medical science being a science.  What defines science doesn't depend upon correctness.  And when the purpose of medical science is to influence the indeterminate behavior of humans that will affect correctness.  The criteria you've presented ignores that science often measures correctness by statistical significance.  Being correct 50.5 pct of the time is statistically significant.  Medical science and behavioral science often test theories in terms of changes in behavior and feelings of the test subjects according to statistical significance. 

Are you attempting to suggest that only physical sciences studying inanimate matter and energy are truly science?  Astrology and Feng Shui are more closely related to behavioral science than physics.  Are behavioral sciences not science?

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.112  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.45    8 months ago
Really? What's the definition of "explanation"? 

Per Oxford: a statement, fact, or situation that tells you why something happened; a reason given for something

Here is the definition of assumption:  a belief or feeling that something is true or that something will happen, although there is no proof.

Note the difference? They are non synonymous.

Why are you asking this question and then immediately quote the answer to it? That doesn't make much sense. 

Why are you playing games rather than simply answering my question?

For instance, recognizing that science doesn't address the issue of God, nor can it, but then making science the basis for your "logical analysis" would be tantamount to saying that if science can't examine it, it doesn't exist.

There is no empirical evidence to support the claim or assumption. Therefore, there is no reason to accept it as factual or true.

You have no evidence that such a position is factual so therefore, your position is one of faith. Even if you allow that there may be a God but essentially treat the issue as irrelevant because it can't be examined you still are operating on faith because you have no evidence that it is irrelevant.

In other words, you think a lack of belief is a belief in itself? Let's be clear, it is not a faith. It's a refusal to accept something as true without supporting empirical evidence.

It's just a personal decision on your part to just believe that science determines reality. 

I never said any such thing. Science examines reality. It doesn't determine it. 

Yeah, I know you guys like to think that's the truth but it isn't. Not going to bother with convincing you otherwise, though. Done it enough already. 

Unless one has facts, something cannot be proclaimed as "truth."

If it isn't supported by empirical evidence, according to you, then what's left is faith. Sorry, but those are your rules, right? 

No! I said if it isn't supported by empirical evidence, there is no reason to accept something as factual or true. You might want to get the "rules" right! 

Um, are you saying the earth wasn't a sphere before it was proven? How is it "now factual", implying it wasn't before? 

I have to wonder if you're just playing trolling games now Drak? Or do you honestly think that is what I am saying? So let me make it clear for you: Whether the earth was thought to be a sphere or flat was not the issue. One cannot honestly make a proclamation of either as fact unless there was evidence to support it. People made claims either way, but simply did not know either way. They made assumptions. But explorers eventually found evidence to determine the earth was indeed spherical.

which is that belief doesn't equal fact.

At least we agree on that. If belief doesn't equal fact, then why would anyone want to go by or rely on belief? 

That means something isn't true simply because you believe it is. Why? 

Evidence Drak, evidence! Or the lack of it!

I think this is so because you believe what constitutes evidence applies to everyone. It doesn't. 

I refer to objective, empirical evidence. That applies whether one accepts it or not. Anything else is less and more subjective and is a less accurate indicator of actual fact or reality.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.113  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.110    8 months ago
Because it isn't what you've been arguing all along or even now.

You just cannot stop with the games.   Anyone can go back and read my comments and see that you are full of it.

Objective truth or fact does not exist independently of an observer, they exist independent of an observer's desires, biases, expectations, prejudices or anything else like that.

A distinction without a difference.

The Earth exists.   That is a true statement.   If there were no observers, the statement would be true.    It is true independent of observers.

Figure it out yourself.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.114  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.112    8 months ago
Note the difference? They are non synonymous.

Gosh, Gordy. You'd have a meaningful point if only this was about the difference between "explanation" and "assumption". Unfortunately for  you the subject is why do you claim God is not an explanation. All you do is say it isn't, yet the definition of explanation, which you helpfully supplied, says it is. So, try again. 

There is no empirical evidence to support the claim or assumption. Therefore, there is no reason to accept it as factual or true.

To quote your favorite thing, great! Prove it. All you're doing is stating a restriction concerning making a judgement value simply because of personal preference. It is claiming that no matter what God does to convince a person, unless He does so empirically, it isn't valid. God says, if you want to know me you must approach me on my terms. You say, sorry God. No can do. Science says you gotta do things scientifically or no dice.  And that seems sane to you. 

In other words, you think a lack of belief is a belief in itself?

Um, no. Like it says right there in the quote you provide but apparently do not understand. 

You have no evidence that such a position is factual so therefore, your position is one of faith.

Do you see "lack of belief" anywhere in there? How about "You have no evidence that such a position is factual"? Why, yes. It's right there, by golly! Since the words don't seem to mean anything to you as written, I'll expand on it. I'll even use your own words. There is no empirical evidence to support your position. How's that? Surely you understand your own words? 

I never said any such thing. Science examines reality. It doesn't determine it.

Really? Then why do you say ridiculous things like "there's no empirical evidence" when the subject is God, even though you know there cannot be because even you know science can't deal with the question of God. So, when you constantly reduce your argument to "no empirical evidence" as you do, you are indeed saying science determines it. 

But, by all means, just deny it and this fact will conveniently go away. 

Unless one has facts, something cannot be proclaimed as "truth."

Um, sure it can. I proclaim it is better to treat someone as I would like to be treated than it is to treat them as they might treat me. Now, the truth of that particular morality can't be empirically proven because it is based on desires of the individual. Another may proclaim it is better to do unto others before they do it unto you. It is up to each to decide which is true and which isn't. Point being, not everything can be determined from facts. 

No! I said if it isn't supported by empirical evidence, there is no reason to accept something as factual or true. You might want to get the "rules" right! 

Rules? What rules? Where do they come from? Is there some agency that enforces them? Can I opt out of them? Again, you just are stating that science determines reality, in your view at least. 

I have to wonder if you're just playing trolling games now Drak? Or do you honestly think that is what I am saying?

A little of both, actually. A person from antiquity may not have had empirical evidence of the kind we have today but he could indeed claim fact by reasoning alone and be right. Others could accept the fact or reject it based on their own analysis of the reasoning. Those who believe the earth is round believe in an actual fact, just not an objective fact. 

At least we agree on that. If belief doesn't equal fact, then why would anyone want to go by or rely on belief? 

Belief is the end point, not the starting point. That is, those who live in reality, anyway. For instance, since empirical evidence can't determine whether or not it is better to treat others as you'd like to be treated over doing unto others before they do it to you, some other means must be used to determine which is true. This is because, to a large part, the answer depends on subjective desire. Since empirical evidence can't solve this, inductive and deductive reasoning, observation, rationality and other such things must be used to arrive at the truth and that truth will be one holds because they believe it is true, i.e. has faith it is true. 

In the same way, since science can't examine God and can't provide evidence one way or the other, other methods must be used to determine the truth of the matter. But not for you, of course. For you, science determines realty so you don't have to bother with those other methods. Convenient. 

I refer to objective, empirical evidence.

Obviously.

That applies whether one accepts it or not. Anything else is less and more subjective and is a less accurate indicator of actual fact or reality.

Which would be a perfectly acceptable statement as long as you don't add anything else to it. And, believe it or not, I even agree with it as written, not necessarily with what you may have intended. The reasons for believing in God (no, not the one's you are always claiming they are. The real ones) are not objective facts. They are subjective ones. But that doesn't mean they aren't true. And since they are subjective, less accurate indicators of the actual facts concerning God. We see that in the differences people have about what He is like, for instance. 

It can't be any other way, since science can't address the issue and God is evidently pleased not to provide empirical evidence Himself. What we are left with are the same tools anyone uses to try to figure out an unsettled issue. Like, is there intelligent life on other planets. There is no empirical evidence to say that there is. None that says there isn't. Still, someone who believes there is doesn't "just believe". They take the entirety of their subjective experience, meaning all they've learned about the issue and think about the subject and do their best to arrive at a conclusion. For some, that conclusion leads them to believe intelligent life on other planets must be fact because they consider the odds against it so astronomical that it approaches zero.  

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.115  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.113    8 months ago
The Earth exists.   That is a true statement.   If there were no observers, the statement would be true.

Really? Then how would you know the earth exists as a fact, independent of an observer? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.116  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.110    8 months ago

Note that you have yet to offer your sound argument that concludes God exists.   Lots of smoke but ultimately you never delivered.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.117  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.115    8 months ago
Really? Then how would you know the earth exists as a fact, independent of an observer? 

The Earth would exist even though nobody would exist to know.   The truth of 'the Earth exists' is independent of observer.  

Prior to human beings evolving there were no cognitive minds capable of comprehending that the Earth existed.

Yet, amazingly, the Earth existed back then.   It was true, prior to any human beings in existence, that the Earth existed.

To wit, this is an example of truth that is independent of an observer. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.118  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.117    8 months ago

I know you think that answered the question, but it doesn't. Every part of your explanation requires an observer to form the explanation. 

Prior to human beings evolving there were no cognitive minds capable of comprehending that the Earth existed. Yet, amazingly, the Earth existed back then.   It was true, prior to any human beings in existence, that the Earth existed.

The only way you can state this is because of observation. We know the universe existed prior to humans because once we got here, we observed that it did. Had it turned out that no life at all developed in this universe there would be no fact of the universe because there would be no mind for the fact to exist in, assuming we aren't including God in this. A universe that doesn't exist is indistinguishable from one that has no observers in it because there are no observers for either one. There is no way to say either is a fact. To do otherwise is to make a truth claim about a thought experiment. Yes, logically, because of our experience as observers we can conceptualize a universe with no observers in it and say it would be a fact, but it will never be anything other than a notional universe and forever not a fact. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.119  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.118    8 months ago

You essentially asked me how an observer could know that the Earth existed if there were no observers.

Now you continue with the same nonsense even though I have never argued this.

Rather than engage in your semantic game I focused on the point that I actually made:

The Earth's existence is truth even if there is nobody alive to observe the truth.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.120  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.114    8 months ago
he subject is why do you claim God is not an explanation.

It does not offer any details or evidence, much less facts. Replace "God" with fairies, leprechauns, or gnomes. It would be the same thing. Going by your understanding, those things are just as valid and acceptable an "explanation" as God is. You want to essentially say "God did it," but offer nothing to support that assumption, much less demonstrate there's a god to begin with which is the foundation of that so-called "explanation."

All you're doing is stating a restriction concerning making a judgement value simply because of personal preference.

No, there is no evidence whatsoever to validate the conclusion "God did it." I'm not going by personal feelings. I doubt I can say the same for you.

It is claiming that no matter what God does to convince a person, unless He does so empirically, it isn't valid.

Do you even understand what empirical evidence is, or why it's so important in science when establishing truth with a degree of certainty?

God says, if you want to know me you must approach me on my terms.

How convenient. That's like a con man saying "trust me" and simply going along with him.

Science says you gotta do things scientifically or no dice.  And that seems sane to you. 

It is logical. The scientific method has proven to be very effective at establishing truth with a degree of certainty. What's insane is forgoing the scientific method in favor of something that is subjective or emotionally appealing.

Like it says right there in the quote you provide but apparently do not understand. 

Then elucidate for me. How is not believing there is a god a belief?

There is no empirical evidence to support your position. How's that?

I'm not the one making or accepting claims of god simply because someone says so. There is no empirical evidence to support such claims. Your attempt at a "gotcha" is both weak and laughable.

Then why do you say ridiculous things like "there's no empirical evidence" when the subject is God,

That is a factual statement.

even though you know there cannot be because even you know science can't deal with the question of God.

Because some people claim with certainty that there is a god or that god did something. Therefore, they invite challenge and bear the burden of proving such assertions with evidence. Now, if they said "I believe there's a god" or "God did this," then there would be no problem.

Another may proclaim it is better to do unto others before they do it unto you. It is up to each to decide which is true and which isn't. Point being, not everything can be determined from facts. 

We are not talking about social or philosophical "facts." We are talking about actual reality and the facts to support truths made about reality. Either you do not understand that or are trying to play games with me! Which is it?

Rules? What rules? Where do they come from?

Science and logic Drak! 

 Can I opt out of them?

Seems like you already have Drak.

Again, you just are stating that science determines reality, in your view at least. 

Are you suggesting science does not do that? That it doesn't look at the universe around us (that is reality) and tries to examine and understand it better and how it works? 

A little of both, actually.

It's kind of you to admit trolling. That shows me you have no desire to have a serious discussion and instead prefer to continue playing your games.

Belief is the end point, not the starting point. That is, those who live in reality, anyway.

No, belief is the starting point. One doesn't know or understand something, so they go by belief. Or possibly indoctrinated into belief or go by it for emotional comfort. The establishment of truth based on fact is the end point.

since science can't examine God and can't provide evidence one way or the other, other methods must be used to determine the truth of the matter.

Other "methods" lack veracity and are highly subjective. It's more honest to say "I don't know" than make something up as "truth" or emotionally appealing.

The reasons for believing in God (no, not the one's you are always claiming they are. The real ones) are not objective facts. They are subjective ones.

What claims about god/s have I made? And yes, I know they are subjective. I have acknowledged that before. But do you not see why subjective is a problem?

What we are left with are the same tools anyone uses to try to figure out an unsettled issue.

Making stuff up or accepting an appeal by authority does not figure anything out. It's just intellectual laziness and dishonesty.

For some, that conclusion leads them to believe intelligent life on other planets must be fact because they consider the odds against it so astronomical that it approaches zero.  

That's not so much a belief as it is an opinion based on probability, taking into account all the available evidence.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.121  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.119    8 months ago
Rather than engage in your semantic game I focused on the point that I actually made:

Got it. Rather than deal with the points I'm making, just call it a semantic game, dust off your hands and continue on with the notion that you can't possibly be wrong. Gotta admit, that probably makes your life a lot simpler. Cudos!

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.2.122  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.121    8 months ago

The Earth's existence is truth even if there is nobody alive to observe the truth.

You either will address this seriously or you will continue to play games.   I suspect it will be the latter.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.2.123  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.2.120    8 months ago
It does not offer any details or evidence, much less facts.

Debatable, but whatever. The point is, an explanation doesn't have to give details, evidence or facts. Observe:

Person 1: Why is there a broken vase on the floor?

Person 2: The cat knocked it off.

See? 

Replace "God" with fairies, leprechauns, or gnomes. It would be the same thing.

Only in the shallowest, non-critically thinking sense. One could replace the cat in the example above with a gnome just as easily. While it also qualifies as an explanation, it isn't a very likely explanation. Given what powers are ascribed to God, fairies, leprechauns or gnomes, only one of them would be infinitely more likely as an explanation. A hollow argument.

No, there is no evidence whatsoever to validate the conclusion "God did it." I'm not going by personal feelings.

Untrue statement. There's plenty of evidence. To correct your statement, "There is no evidence whatsoever that you accept as evidence to validate the conclusion 'God did it'". Those that do accept it as evidence are therefore not going by "personal feelings" no matter how you personally feel about it. 

Do you even understand what empirical evidence is, or why it's so important in science when establishing truth with a degree of certainty?

And at this point, there's no purpose in continuing. It appears impossible for you to understand a paradigm not your own, even for the sake of discussion. Since you can't, no point. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.124  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.2.123    8 months ago
Debatable, but whatever.

Then feel free to provide actual facts that there's a god and/or god actually did anything.

The point is, an explanation doesn't have to give details, evidence or facts.

Then the "explanation" lacks merit.

Person 1: Why is there a broken vase on the floor?

Person 2: The cat knocked it off.

See? 

An assumption, with no facts established to support it. It could also be quite incorrect too.

Only in the shallowest, non-critically thinking sense.

No, in the exact same sense as using "god."

One could replace the cat in the example above with a gnome just as easily. While it also qualifies as an explanation, it isn't a very likely explanation.

The same can apply to god. That's why evidence is necessary, especially when establishing fact.

Given what powers are ascribed to God, fairies, leprechauns or gnomes, only one of them would be infinitely more likely as an explanation. A hollow argument.

One can simply ascribe the same abilities to fairies if one chooses. Same difference.

Untrue statement. There's plenty of evidence.

You say that, but offer up nothing!

"There is no evidence whatsoever that you accept as evidence to validate the conclusion 'God did it'".

Don't presume to speak for me or misquote me. It's a dishonest tactic. I said there is no objective, empirical evidence for god or that "god did it." That is a factual statement.

Those that do accept it as evidence are therefore not going by "personal feelings" no matter how you personally feel about it. 

Those that accept there's a god or "god did it," sans evidence, are likely going by personal feelings.

And at this point, there's no purpose in continuing.

Right, you've got nothing, offered nothing, and now are running away. Just as well I suppose.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.2.125  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.2.122    8 months ago
You either will address this seriously or you will continue to play games.   I suspect it will be the latter.

I'd say most definitely the latter.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.3  Gordy327  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3    8 months ago

Indeed. Science doesn't deal with god/s or the supernatural one way or another. Such things are a non-issue in science. What science can do is discredit or rationally explain certain claims made on behalf of God or religion.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4  Drakkonis  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3    8 months ago
And no, science doesn’t require faith, at all. In fact it is the exact opposite. I don’t have “faith” that my TV is going to work when I hit the power button, I expect it to work because the engineers who designed it knew what the fuck they were doing, and the scientific principles that their work rests on are so well supported by evidence and rigorous testing that their work is expected to produce the desired result. 

This is not an example of not requiring faith and misses the point of the article entirely. That your TV works as expected simply points to the fact that we know enough about our environment and how it works to produce something like a TV. It does nothing to address the point of the article, which is we don't know why our environment, i.e. the universe, has the properties it does or even why it should have properties at all, let alone one that allows TV's. Therefore, to believe that because we know how a thing works means a God would not be necessary is akin to saying engineers aren't necessary because you know how a car works. As the writer of the article correctly points out, it is not possible to prove or disprove God. Therefore, to say God is not necessary or an explanation for why is an act of faith. One not supported by empirical evidence of any kind. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.1  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4    8 months ago

The more we can explain phenomena, the less room there is for 'god did it'.

God still has room in the gaps — places where we do not have answers thus a sentient creator remains possible.   One of the gaps is illustrated in the fine-tuning argument.   Another is in how life itself emerged and went on to form our amazing cells.   But the gaps nowadays compared to centuries ago are few.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.2  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.1    8 months ago
The more we can explain phenomena, the less room there is for 'god did it'.

Your mistake is in saying that if we can explain something, the cause of it could not have been God. 

Prove it. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.3  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.2    8 months ago
Your mistake is in saying that if we can explain something, the cause of it could not have been God. 

Where did I state "could not have been"?   Deliver the quote.

"Not necessarily" is different from "could not have been".

In the past, gods were presented as the only explanation for phenomena such as lightning.   Nowadays we can explain lightning without having to resort to 'god is angy' or equivalent.

That does not mean that there cannot be an entity tweaking things to generate lightning.   It means that we have a more plausible explanation that is backed by some rather serious evidence.   Given our modern explanation (which is quite sound) versus an explanation that has zero supporting evidence, it is rational to hold that lightning is a consequence of releasing a potential electrical charge built in clouds rather than an expression of power by Zeus.

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
3.4.4  Thrawn 31  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4    8 months ago

You missed my point entirely. Of course you can always digress to the point that I, or anyone, cannot provide a logical, fact based explanation. That does not mean god. That just mean we do t know, yet.

My point was that the need for god has become so small as to be nonexistent in everyday life because we understand the natural world so well that we can figure things out without asking the big guy. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.5  Drakkonis  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3.4.4    8 months ago
My point was that the need for god has become so small as to be nonexistent in everyday life because we understand the natural world so well that we can figure things out without asking the big guy.

Um, yeah, the God of the gaps argument. Nobody ascribes to the God of the gaps idea on my side of the isle. That is, we don't use God to explain things we don't understand in the natural world. Here's why dredging up that stupid thing is just misdirection. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.6  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.5    8 months ago

The existence of a sentient creator, based on the lack of supporting evidence, is pure speculation.   The speculated existence of something as highly attributed and specific as the Christian God must actually defy evidence against it.    So when this video argues that God is the 'explanation' behind all of science it fails to consider the fact that there is nothing whatsoever that backs up that speculation.

Instead of joining the 'we do not currently know' honest answer by science, the theistic answer is 'God'.   The video says that this is not god of the gaps, but it most certainly is:   god of the gaps = inserting 'God' as the answer for that which we do not currently know.

So sure, people do not say 'God did it' on every little gap of knowledge such as why in particle physics we have superposition.  But the fact that people are not that ridiculous does not mean god of the gaps is not in play.   As soon as you state that God is that which created our known universe you have engaged in god of the gaps.    The fine-tuning argument, for example, is a god of the gaps argument.   "It must be God ... what else could possibly explain this!"

And if you try to equate 'God did it' in fine-tuning with the notion of multiverse note that while the multiverse is scientific speculation, it is based on modern scientific knowledge.   It is not just some fictional notion but is founded in serious theoretical physics and is actively under scrutiny.   If found to be wrong it will be scrapped (just as Hawking's black hole information paradox was scrapped).  

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.7  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.6    8 months ago

It is quite obvious that you and Gordy and Sandy and a couple others will never allow people to express religious beliefs on Newstalkers without you contesting every inch of it. And that is exactly what you do.  Even though you KNOW that you cannot disprove God with science, you incessantly demand that people who are not even interested in "proof" must demonstrate the existence of God through science. Or else you come after them with truly constant objections to whatever they say. 

Its a wonder there are still people here who will "debate" you and Gordy. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.8  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.7    8 months ago
It is quite obvious that you and Gordy and Sandy and a couple others will never allow people to express religious beliefs on Newstalkers without you contesting every inch of it.

Oh don't start with this crap now John.   You seeded this article which spawned sub-topics.   We have the right to express our positions and rebuttals as much as anyone else.

Even though you KNOW that you cannot disprove God with science, you incessantly demand that people who are not even interested in "proof" must demonstrate the existence of God through science.

Here you go again ignoring the explanation I gave you (yet again) and just complaining as if I had not offered a word.   

It is the claim of CERTAINTY that is challenged, not the belief.

If someone states:  "I believe in God", you will not see a "prove it".   It is when someone states:  "My God exists" and leaves zero room that they might be mistaken or when someone makes an argument wherein at least one of the premises is "My God exists" that you will see a challenge.

Its a wonder there are still people here who will "debate" you and Gordy. 

Most of the time they do not actually engage in debate except maybe for the first several posts.   It is mostly game-playing to avoid actual honest debate.   As I have oft-noted to Gordy, one must be patient in these discussions and think in terms of mining for gold because we will see a lot of crap inbetween.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.9  Drakkonis  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.7    8 months ago
Its a wonder there are still people here who will "debate" you and Gordy. 

Stupidity and stubbornness accounts for it on my part. I never learn, it seems. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.10  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.9    8 months ago

That is not my position.    The last attribute I would apply to you is 'stupid'.    My responses to you are based on my interpretation of your words coming from a highly intelligent mind.   In result, you do not get much of a benefit of the doubt from me anymore.   I do indeed expect more of you than most.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.11  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.8    8 months ago
It is the claim of CERTAINTY that is challenged, not the belief.

So you want people who believe in God and follow a religion to not express "certainty" about it?

Give it a goddamn rest Tig. 

I dont see anyone on this site , with one exception, who goes around flaunting "certainty" about their religious beliefs. 

But you want people who believe in God to either express that they lack "certainty" or just stay quiet. 

It is not fair to people. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.12  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.6    8 months ago
The existence of a sentient creator, based on the lack of supporting evidence, is pure speculation.   The speculated existence of something as highly attributed and specific as the Christian God must actually defy evidence against it.

(Insert whatever you imagine I would say here)

So when this video argues that God is the 'explanation' behind all of science it fails to consider the fact that there is nothing whatsoever that backs up that speculation.

(Insert more stuff)

Instead of joining the 'we do not currently know' honest answer by science, the theistic answer is 'God'.   The video says that this is not god of the gaps, but it most certainly is:   god of the gaps = inserting 'God' as the answer for that which we do not currently know.

(Some different stuff that more directly relates to this point)

So sure, people do not say 'God did it' on every little gap of knowledge such as why in particle physics we have superposition.  But the fact that people are notthatridiculous does not mean god of the gaps is not in play.

(Insert something that refutes this, or seems to in my imagination)

As soon as you state that God is that which created our known universe you have engaged in god of the gaps.    The fine-tuning argument, for example, is a god of the gaps argument.   "It must be God ... what else could possibly explain this!"

(Something that indicates strong rejection of this statement. Comments that give basis for refutation. more comments stating your side is actually doing the same thing)

And if you try to equate 'God did it' in fine-tuning with the notion of multiverse note that while the multiverse is scientific speculation, it is based on modern scientific knowledge.   It is not just some fictional notion but is founded in serious theoretical physics and is actively under scrutiny.   If found to be wrong it will be scrapped (just as Hawking's black hole information paradox was scrapped).  

(Some refuting comments and a general summation of my points)

Wow! That's certainly a lot easier than laboring at an actual argument you're going to reject out of hand without thought. Should have done this a long time ago!

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
3.4.13  sandy-2021492  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.7    8 months ago
It is quite obvious that you and Gordy and Sandy and a couple others will never allow people to express religious beliefs on Newstalkers without you contesting every inch of it.

That is not true.  Say "I believe in God" until the cows come home.  I can agree that it is likely that you do, indeed, believe in God.

Say "God, and only my God, is real, and all others are false", and evidence will be requested, or your claims dismissed as lacking credibility.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.14  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.4.13    8 months ago
Say "God, and only my God, is real, and all others are false",

When in hell has anyone on Newstalkers ever said that?   One person. XX Jefferson will say that, and he is roundly ridiculed by everyone. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.15  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.11    8 months ago
So you want people who believe in God and follow a religion to not express "certainty" about it?

Is that what you got from my explanation?  

If someone states that Trump absolutely won the last election, no possibility they are wrong,  do you challenge that claim of certainty?   Do you ask them to prove the claim of certainty?

If someone states that they think Trump won the last election but imply that they might be wrong, do you hold that as equal to the certain claim by the nutcase (above)?   Would you ask them to prove that they think Trump won?

I think you have every right (and are indeed correct to do so) to challenge the claim: "Trump won the election, no way I am wrong" and ask for proof.

I dont see anyone on this site , with one exception, who goes around flaunting "certainty" about their religious beliefs. 

Pay attention to when proof is called for.   Then you will see one of those certain claims that you apparently cannot see.

But you want people who believe in God to either express that they lack "certainty" or just stay quiet. 

Again, where do you see me suggesting that?   Quit putting words in my mouth.   People do what they will and people will react as they will.   You are here telling me to STFU.   Do you not recognize your hypocrisy?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.16  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.15    8 months ago

We know Trump lost the last election. They counted all the votes. That is what we call PROOF.  

There is no proof about the existence of God one way or the other. Yet, you keep demanding it. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.17  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.14    8 months ago

Don't be so literal.  

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
3.4.18  sandy-2021492  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.14    8 months ago
When in hell has anyone on Newstalkers ever said that?

You, @8.2.19

But there is only one God, there are not multiple "gods"

Tell that to a follower of a polytheistic religion.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.19  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.16    8 months ago

John, this is an example of what I was referring to regarding debate.   You are intentionally skirting past what I wrote.   Instead of addressing my questions you jump to:   there was proof with Trump but there is no proof with God.

Irrelevant!   The point is that a claim of certainty bears the burden of proof.   You would demand proof for the claim of certainty but would not demand proof for the modest opinion.  See?  

Further, if one does not have the proof, then it would be wise to not make a claim of certainty.   Make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you are wrong.   That applies in every discussion, not just the religious ones.

Note my position on sentient creator.   I must have written this a hundred times on this site by now:

Although a sentient creator remains a possibility, I am not persuaded that one exists based on the evidence.  

I would be genuinely thrilled (intellectually) if someday someone offered something persuasive on the existence of a sentient creator.   But until that happens, I am not impressed by fellow human beings merely declaring 'truth'.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.20  Drakkonis  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.16    8 months ago
There is no proof about the existence of God one way or the other. Yet, you keep demanding it. 

They do that so they can feel superior about their position, even though they know on some level the proof they demand isn't really relevant to the issue. So if they just keep screaming "objective evidence" they don't have to think about alternatives or the holes in their own arguments. I guess they think it proves materialism or something like that. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.21  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.20    8 months ago
They do that so they can feel superior about their position

Don't engage in armchair psychoanalysis.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.22  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.20    8 months ago

If someone states that their god exists and there is no possibility that they are wrong (allow for all sorts of ways in which this sentiment can be expressed) would you find it wrong to ask them to prove their 100% correct claim?

If someone states that no god could possibly exist and they cannot be wrong about this, would you ask them to prove their claim?

Do these claims bear the burden of proof?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.23  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.12    8 months ago
... reject out of hand without thought.

I am confident that if people read my responses to your comments that most would not agree with you that I reject what you write without thought.

I put forth plenty of effort to use clear, precise language, quote you, maintain context, etc.   To reject what you write without thought means that I would not be writing detailed rebuttals logically countering what you state (and quoting you for clarity) but rather simply writing a bunch of Gish Gallop bullshit.

Your latest posts read like sour grapes. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.24  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.22    8 months ago
If someone states that their god exists and there is no possibility that they are wrong (allow for all sorts of ways in which this sentiment can be expressed) would you find it wrong to ask them to prove their 100% correct claim?

If someone states that no god could possibly exist and they cannot be wrong about this, would you ask them to prove their claim?

Do these claims bear the burden of proof?

Since no one I know in here does that, except maybe one person, maybe you should take it up with them? What you guys actually try to do is make it seem as if anyone who claims belief in God is also telling you God is a scientifically verifiable objective fact. Not the case, so go ask someone who's interested in answering. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.25  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.24    8 months ago
What you guys actually try to do is make it seem as if anyone who claims belief in God is also telling you God is a scientifically verifiable objective fact.

You should pay closer attention then.   Typically what happens is that, in reaction to some theistic claim, 'we' might note that there is no evidence for a sentient creator.   I just did this in my reply to your video's claims @3.4.6   And by 'evidence' we are indeed speaking of that which is objectively verifiable and repeatable.   The evidence, by the way, could also be mostly logical;  remember how I have asked you for your logical proof of God (which you refuse to provide)?   The evidence of interest is in contrast to an individual simply claiming experiences, feelings, etc.

I understand that if one does not have a good answer they will not like the call for evidence.   And if someone, like you, claims 'evidence' such as the fine-tuning argument, personal experiences, etc. and 'we' are not persuaded, you should not get upset simply because others are not persuaded by that which you hold dear.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.26  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.25    8 months ago
You should pay closer attention then.   Typically what happens is that, in reaction to some theistic claim, 'we' might note that there is no evidence for a sentient creator.   I just did this in my reply to your video's claims @3.4.6   And by 'evidence' we are indeed speaking of that which is objectively verifiable and repeatable.   The evidence, by the way, could also be mostly logical;  remember how I have asked you for your logical proof of God (which you refuse to provide)?   The evidence of interest is in contrast to an individual simply claiming experiences, feelings, etc.

I do pay close attention. Here's what actually happens rather than the blather listed here. Imagine you are in a square ten yards to a side. In that square contains all you believe is true or suspect is true. The reasons why you believe it and the methods that lead you to those beliefs.

I also have a square of the same dimensions, containing the things I believe are true or suspect is true, why I believe it and the methods I use that lead me to those beliefs.

What you and Gordy constantly do is ask a question and when we try to answer, you stop us and say, no. You can't argue from your square. Your answer doesn't satisfy the criteria of my square. Stand in my square and use only the tools, beliefs and methods in it. And nothing we say is even considered unless we do that. Argue within the confines of your square is all that is allowed by you. Thing is, such a requirement exists only in your mind. You have decided what is valid and what isn't and somehow think it applies to everyone. Sorry, but it doesn't. 

What is so utterly, frustratingly stupid about it all is that you know as well as I do your criteria can't examine the question of God. If it could, God would have been proven a long time ago. Yet even knowing this, you still try to use the methods in your square to discuss the issue. You have to know this as well as I do, yet you persist. 

And yes, I refuse to provide. We've been through all that stuff many times over. You are aware of all the arguments, as am I. 

I understand that if one does not have a good answer they will not like the call for evidence.   And if someone, like you, claims 'evidence' such as the fine-tuning argument, personal experiences, etc. and 'we' are not persuaded, you should not get upset simply because others are not persuaded by that which you hold dear.

(sigh) That isn't even a good try.  

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.27  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.7    8 months ago
It is quite obvious that you and Gordy and Sandy and a couple others will never allow people to express religious beliefs on Newstalkers without you contesting every inch of it. And that is exactly what you do.

Oh that's BS John and you know it! You and anyone else can freely express your religious beliefs and no one has ever said otherwise. Some of us simply challenge the claims made based on those beliefs. Quite the difference there!

Even though you KNOW that you cannot disprove God with science, you incessantly demand that people who are not even interested in "proof" must demonstrate the existence of Godthrough science.

If one claims "God is real," "God did it," ect. (as fact), then that is a claim of certainty (which one cannot possibly know, much less demonstrate) and is therefore subject to scrutiny or challenge. That's been explained to you and others ad nauseum now.

Its a wonder there are still people here who will "debate" you and Gordy. 

Not much debate at all. Most quickly become emotional, irate, or engage in other slimy tactics like Strawmen arguments, deflection, ect.. Few seem able to "debate" logically, rationally, or civilly. 

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.28  Texan1211  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.16    8 months ago

"Prove it" is all it ever boils down to.

Thousands of posts later, it is still the same.

"Prove it".

Waste of time.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.29  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.26    8 months ago
What is so utterly, frustratingly stupid about it all is that you know as well as I do your criteria can't examine the question of God.

Religions purposely define God in such a way that it is impossible to examine.   There is nothing to evidence, nothing to investigate, no possible way to falsify.   God is defined as an abstraction that is outside of our reality.   So (even though believers somehow get around this since some, like you, claim personal, direct interactions with God and knowledge of God's thought process, intentions, etc.) any attempt to verify these religious claims of personally engaging God conveniently cannot be conducted in a formal setting.  

And, of course, this works superbly for religions.   If God cannot be falsified then people can continue to freely believe in it and so much better for religions.  All the religions need do to make this work is to get people to believe them on faith alone.    And clearly they have long since figured out how to work that system.

But when speaking with others who do not simply accept as truth what other human beings claim, the standard religious faith-based reasoning does not cut it.   And you know it is not going to be persuasive.   Using the style of your own words here for effect:  "What is so utterly, frustratingly stupid about it all is that you know as well as I do your mere claims of faith will not be persuasive."

You are frustrated that we do not see things your way.   But note also that you do not provide anything that takes the notion of 'God' out of the realm of pure speculation.   You claim that God is real and get pissed when we note that we simply see it as speculation.   But you offer nothing much more than your good word, the Bible, fine-tuning, etc.  and expect that will be persuasive.   That is not realistic.   (Indeed, the Bible is a truly horrible way to persuade someone that the God defined by that collective set of books is real.) 

I know this, you know this.  But only one of us is getting pissed and blaming the other for finding their square to be rational.


Sentient Creator was not 'Good Enough'

Ultimately, there seems to be nothing that supports the notion of 'god' above the level of pure speculation.   And the more detailed the definition of god the worse the speculation.   If people just had the good sense to stay at the sentient creator level of abstraction, they would be on much stronger ground.   There is nothing that indicates a sentient creator is impossible.   So unlike believing in gods like Zeus, Yahweh, Brahma, etc. where one must accept all the baggage that goes along with these well-defined characters, the notion of a sentient creator is focused, unencumbered, logical and has no contradictions.  

And if people really were to take such an approach they would also necessarily know nothing about the sentient creator.   This removes another major problem.  Religious people speaking for the grandest possible entity, making comments as though they have insight into a mind of this magnitude, that they understand what such an entity wants and plans to do, etc.   All that nonsense disappears.    All that a believer would 'know' (so to speak) about a sentient creator is the belief that this is the creator of the universe and is sentient.   No human authority exists.   No control of people through their faith.  

Kenneth Copeland would be out of business.

But, human beings do not operate that way.   'We' all must have our own view of the sentient creator and create attributes and stories so that our god is the best god.  Our ancestors invented all sorts of characters that conform well to their times and cultures.   In result, we have thousands of historical gods.   In our time, most of these gods have been abandoned and the last few standing are the Christian god (defined differently depending upon the denomination), the Islamic god (variants of Allah exist too), the Jewish G-d (YHWH), the Hindu gods and then a smattering of far lesser known gods.

You do not seem to understand why —given this history— some of us do not simply accept as truth what ancient men merely claimed as such.    Even when you can see what a mess the god landscape is and the overwhelming evidence of flawed human imagination at work.


You have to know this as well as I do, yet you persist. 

Nobody forces you to participate.   You know that we live in different squares yet here you are complaining about it as if I am at fault for my thought process.   That somehow my not expanding my square so that it overlaps yours is unfair.

So, given that background, what, in very precise terms, would you have me do?    Am I supposed to change my criteria?   To accept 'faith' instead of evidence?

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.30  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.28    8 months ago
Prove it" is all it ever boils down to.

Are you saying you never request or require proof when someone makes an affirmative claim for something?

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.31  Texan1211  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.30    8 months ago

I meant exactly what I wrote.

Is there something in my post you don't get?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.32  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.31    8 months ago
Is there something in my post you don't get?

I suspect Gordy was giving you the benefit of the doubt and allowing the possibility that you had a significant point.    Apparently it was yet again nothing more than your exclamation that you can detect nothing more from these discussions other than 'prove it'.  

Ironic that you then use the phrase "don't get".

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.33  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.32    8 months ago

Should I start addressing all my posts to Gordy to you now?

As far as the "prove it" goes, I'll change my mind when I see real evidence that it doesn't always end up with "Prove it!".

Thus far, neither of you have ever provided me anything different.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.34  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.31    8 months ago

How about a simple answer to my question. A yes or no will suffice.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.35  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.33    8 months ago

I am convinced that you will never change your mind;  you cannot see anything more than what you have described.   The problem is with you.   Nothing I worry about.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.36  Texan1211  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.34    8 months ago
Are you saying you never request or require proof when someone makes an affirmative claim for something?

There is your question.

How you ever imagined me saying anything even close to what you asked is totally whack.

Ask appropriate questions if you truly want answers.

OOPS!

Sorry, I forgot to address that to TG.

My apologies sir!

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.37  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.33    8 months ago

When someone makes an affirmative claim with certainty, it is reasonable to inquire about proof for the claim. As long as there are claims of certainty,  there will be the call for proof. Why is that a problem for you?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.38  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.34    8 months ago

The trouble with being specific is that one is then vulnerable to being shown as wrong.   Being vague is safe.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.39  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.35    8 months ago
I am convinced that you will never change your mind;  you cannot see anything more than what you have described.   The problem is with you.   Nothing I worry about.

That's nice.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.40  Texan1211  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.37    8 months ago

It is no more of a problem for me than people who believe in God are for you.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.41  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.36    8 months ago

Yes, that was my question. I even said as much. Now that has been established, you seem to take issue when proof us requested to support an affirmative claim. Hence, my question. Now, how about you actually answer rather than deflect.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.42  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.40    8 months ago

I never said people who belive in God was a problem for me. So why do you seem to get irate when proof is requested?

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.43  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.38    8 months ago
Yes, that was my question. I even said as much. Now that has been established, you seem to take issue when proof us requested to support an affirmative claim. Hence, my question. Now, how about you actually answer rather than deflect.

I have asked for proof for any number of claims.

Never once about religion or God, though.

You see, I am smart enough to know that since God's existence can't be proven to you and others in any way you would accept, it would be rather silly of me to continue to ask for the same shit over and over and over again expecting different results.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.44  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.38    8 months ago

Indeed. And when that fails, note how defensive and irate some seem to become. Even trollish.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.45  Texan1211  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.42    8 months ago
I never said people who belive in God was a problem for me.

Great!

Probably the very reason I made no such claim, sir.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
3.4.46  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.35    8 months ago

Do you think he gets bored and goes looking for specific members to troll?

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.47  Texan1211  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.4.46    8 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.48  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.4.46    8 months ago

Not a doubt in my mind TG.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.49  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.43    8 months ago
You see, I am smart enough to know that since God's existence can't be proven to you and others in any way you would accept, it would be rather silly of me to continue to ask for the same shit over and over and over again expecting different results.

If god's existence cannot be proven, then it's silly and disingenuous for someone (not saying you specifically) to make a claim of certainty regarding god. As for acceptable "proof," objective empirical evidence would be sufficient (proof might be too high a bar) as that is the highest standard and quality of evidence there is. That is why science prefers objective, empirical evidence. Anything else is lesser "evidence" and more subject to error, bias, or less validity.

I have asked for proof for any number of claims. Never once about religion or God, though.

Affirmative claims themselves warrant the condition of proving it. Funny how some require proof for some things, but god gets a free pass in that regard.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.50  Texan1211  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.49    8 months ago

you continue to miss my point. deliberately. I suspect.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.51  Gordy327  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.50    8 months ago
you continue to miss my point. deliberately. I suspect.

While you continue to seemingly miss mine. deliberately. I suspect.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.52  Texan1211  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.51    8 months ago

[removed]

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.53  Drakkonis  replied to  Texan1211 @3.4.33    8 months ago
As far as the "prove it" goes, I'll change my mind when I see real evidence that it doesn't always end up with "Prove it!". Thus far, neither of you have ever provided me anything different.

You know, that's actually a pretty good summation of them. Forever crying for "proof" but never supplying any for their own position. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.54  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.53    8 months ago

What claim of certainty have I made for which you desire proof and none has been provided?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.55  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.49    8 months ago
If god's existence cannot be proven, then it's silly and disingenuous for someone (not saying you specifically) to make a claim of certainty regarding god.

Prove it.

As for acceptable "proof," objective empirical evidence would be sufficient (proof might be too high a bar) as that is the highest standard and quality of evidence there is.

Prove why such a level of evidence is necessary. 

That is why science prefers objective, empirical evidence. Anything else is lesser "evidence" and more subject to error, bias, or less validity.

Prove, even though everyone knows science can't even address the question of God, why this actually matters at all? 

Affirmative claims themselves warrant the condition of proving it.

Prove that someone who doesn't worship at the church of science has to prove anything. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.56  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.55    8 months ago

Imagine discourse if people were to engage in such a practice on every opinion as per your post.    Why engage in such ridiculous exaggeration when you know that nobody here is even close to your extreme?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.57  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.56    8 months ago
Imagine discourse if people were to engage in such a practice on every opinion as per your post.    Why engage in such ridiculous exaggeration when you know that nobody here is even close to your extreme?

Thank you for helping me prove my point in 3.4.53 . Every one of those quotes are quotes of certainty. I'm applying the same standard as you both apply to us. Deal with it or keep proving the things I've said are right.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.58  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.57    8 months ago

You are engaging in cheap theatrics.  

If you want to seriously and honestly attempt to prove your point then address the challenge I gave you @3.4.54:

TiG @3.4.54 What claim of certainty have I made for which you desire proof and none has been provided?

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.59  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.55    8 months ago
If god's existence cannot be proven, then it's silly and disingenuous for someone (not saying you specifically) to make a claim of certainty regarding god.
Prove it.

Replace "god" with anything else, such as magical fairies. Do you see how silly that sounds? It's no difference when using god. No evidence/proof means the claim has no merit. Therefore, such claims are disingenuous at best, dishonest at worst.

As for acceptable "proof," objective empirical evidence would be sufficient (proof might be too high a bar) as that is the highest standard and quality of evidence there is. Prove why such a level of evidence is necessary. 

Why settle for less than the best? It establishes the greatest level of veracity for a claim.

That is why science prefers objective, empirical evidence. Anything else is lesser "evidence" and more subject to error, bias, or less validity. Prove, even though everyone knows science can't even address the question of God, why this actually matters at all? 

See previous statement. Anything else just sets the bar lower. It sure matters in science. Especially where credibility is concerned.

Affirmative claims themselves warrant the condition of proving it. Prove that someone who doesn't worship at the church of science has to prove anything. 

It seems you haven't been paying attention. No one has to prove anything. But as a course of logic, claims bring the burden of proof.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.60  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.59    8 months ago

None of that is proof. None of that is empirically true. You are just expressing opinion. Why are you settling for less than the best? 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.61  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.60    8 months ago

What it is is a rational explanation, unlike the religious based assumptions some make here.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.62  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.60    8 months ago

Given you have returned after many hours it is clear that you cannot deliver where I have made a claim of certainty and have refused your request to deliver proof.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.63  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.60    8 months ago
None of that is proof. None of that is empirically true. You are just expressing opinion. Why are you settling for less than the best? 

I am sure that you understand the notion of burden of proof but you pretend otherwise.   I have explained this many times even several times here in this main thread so I will simply quote myself:

TiG @3.2.48

As I have already explained, if someone makes a claim (and it does not matter if it is about God) of certainty then they bear the burden of proof.

If someone claims X is true and that there is no way they are wrong, do you not see how they bear the burden of proof?

In contrast, if someone claims X is true but they acknowledge they might be wrong, they do NOT bear the burden of proof.

This is basic philosophy.

Burden:   The Earth is flat;  no chance that I am wrong.

No burden:  I believe the Earth is flat; but I could be wrong.

and

TiG @3.2.57The burden of proof does not mean that the claimer must provide proof to his interlocutor.   If that is what you are thinking then strike that thought.  The burden of proof identifies a fallacy.   If a claim bears the burden of proof (because the claim is one of 100% certainty) and said proof is not supplied then the claim is fallacious.  

I go out of my way to note the important factor of: "there is no way they are wrong".

So to be super specific, if you assert that your God exists with no possibility that your God might not exist then you bear the burden of proof.   But if you opine that you believe your God exists then no burden of proof applies.

So you claiming belief in God is essentially opinion unless you explicitly or by context connote that your assertion is 100% truth (cannot be false).   Then, and only then, do you bear the burden of proof.   Thus someone can and should challenge your claim.  

The supporting evidence of this can be found by Googling 'burden of proof' and reading as many third party explanations you wish.


Finally, your theatrics here are based on you presenting statements made by Gordy where you declare they are claims of certainty and not normal opinion.   You then demand proof.   You think that this silly display is equivalent to when Gordy says "That's nice, prove it" in response to someone making a claim of certainty that their God exists.

That is, you do not find Gordy (or anyone here) demanding proof on every statement that people make in ordinary discourse.   The call for proof (and this really is intended to mean evidence not literal proof) is for assertions of certain truth (no way the assertion is wrong).

In short, you are being ridiculous.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.64  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.63    8 months ago

Aaa I say, proof would be nice. But evidence is fine too. But people never have either when they make claims regarding God. Just simple assumptions based on belief. But somehow, that is more acceptable or valid than actual empirical evidence.  I suppose prefer a low bar to jump.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.65  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.64    8 months ago

People tend to resort to tactics when they run out of honest, intelligent rebuttals.    This is a pet peeve for me.   I just have no patience for it anymore.  

The idea here (as you know) is extremely simple:

An assertion of certain truth bears the burden of proof.     So if someone makes an assertion and states or implies that they could not possibly be wrong, then they bear the burden of proof.   And since formal proof is largely impossible unless speaking of formal systems such as logic, mathematics, etc. the burden of proof means the burden to substantiate the assertion with persuasive evidence.

In this forum, this is almost always limited to the assertion:  "My god exists; no possibility I am wrong" (phrased in many ways).    Reason being is that it is an extremely bold assertion (about as bold as one can get) and that there is no real evidence to support it.   It is, in clear language, an irrational claim just as "No god exists; no possibility I am wrong" is an irrational claim.

So if someone has heartburn that they are challenged to evidence an extremely bold assertion of 100% truth, maybe they should just dial down their language a bit so that they give room for the possibility that they might be wrong.   "I believe my god exists" does not bear the burden of proof (evidence).   Easy remedy.  Whining that a claim of certainty is challenged is a waste of time.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.66  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.60    8 months ago
None of that is empirically true.

To illustrate the nonsense in your theatrics, using your little game I could ask you to prove thisstatement.   (In fact, I could ask you to prove each of your three assertions.)

Ridiculous, right?   

Real simple, if you do not make an assertion of certainty (where you explicitly or implicitly declare that you could not possibly be wrong) then I doubt anyone would challenge you to prove your assertion.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.67  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.65    8 months ago

One must first have an honest, intelligent rebuttal to begin with. I rarely see that from those whose claims are challenged. They simply ignore the challenge and repeat themselves or engage in various dishonest tactics. The concept of logic, especially where the burden of proof is concerned, apparently seems lost on them.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.68  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.67    8 months ago

We all know that it is impossible to support the claim:  "My God exists; no way I am wrong".   So yes they have no intelligent rebuttal and they know it.   And if someone were to state:  "No god exists; no way I am wrong" they too would have made a claim that cannot be supported.   The claims are both irrational.   People should not make such claims.

To whine about being challenged for same while continuing to make the claim is silly.   Either stop whining or dial down the claim to one that is not an assertion of 100% truth.

"I believe my god exists" will not be met with "prove it".    It likely will be met with:  "explain why" (phrased many different ways).

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.69  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.68    8 months ago

It's also funny how some people want proof of affirmative claims, except when it comes to claims about God. They give God claims a free pass, which only shows a bias or dishonesty on their part.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
3.4.70  Texan1211  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.53    8 months ago
You know, that's actually a pretty good summation of them. Forever crying for "proof" but never supplying any for their own position. 

Thank you.

I believe that the many, many posts here, including the ones immediately following this response, proves my statement.

All boils down to nothing more than a petulant "Prove it".

Why seemingly intelligent people would continue to demand something they know can't be delivered satisfactorily to them is bewildering to me, day after day after day--the same old stuff, never, ever changes. What is that old saying about doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results?

 
 
 
gooseisback
Freshman Silent
3.4.71  gooseisback  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.59    8 months ago
Replace "god" with anything else, such as magical fairies. Do you see how silly that sounds? It's no difference when using god. No evidence/proof means the claim has no merit. Therefore, such claims are disingenuous at best, dishonest at worst.

The "Big Bang Theory" could be inserted as well.  

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.72  Gordy327  replied to  gooseisback @3.4.71    8 months ago

No, it can't. The difference is, the Big Bang Theory has supporting empirical evidence. God does not.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.73  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.72    8 months ago

Not just empirical evidence.   Modern cosmology theory can predict (describe) the evolution of the universe from the Planck Epoch (the first 1043 seconds) on.   So Big Bang is consistent with all modern physics.   That is no tiny feat.

What is not known is what took place in the Planck Epoch where quantum dynamics appears to have ruled and our science can only speculate (at this point).

Here one can insert anything from quantum fluctuations to sentient creator.   We just do not know.   But, crucially, anything inserted is speculation.   And at least quantum fluctuation is not just some wild idea but is indeed a real phenomenon.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.74  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.73    8 months ago
Here one can insert anything from quantum fluctuations to sentient creator.   We just do not know. 

"We do not know" is an honest answer. Anything else is just an assumption as best. But claiming anything with certainty is illogical and warrants challenge, regardless if the claim can be "proven" or not. Of course, some don't seem to get it or care and think such claims can pass unchallenged simply because it can't be proven. Possibly because they might agree with the claim itself?

Not just empirical evidence.   Modern cosmology theory can predict (describe) the evolution of the universe from the Planck Epoch (the first1043seconds) on.   So Big Bang is consistent with all modern physics.   That is no tiny feat.

That only reinforces the concept and probability of the Big Bang itself.

So gooseisback, what were you saying about the Big Bang Theory?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.75  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.74    8 months ago
"We do not know" is an honest answer

Exactly.   But that is exactly the mindset that religions (all of them) counter.   Instead of "we do not know" they offer an answer.   And that in itself is not a problem except they claim the answer is 100% truth.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.76  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.75    8 months ago

People who actually believe in God often have certainty. Maybe it is a product of faith, maybe it is upbringing, or even what you call indoctrination. The thing is why do you care. You have repeatedly said that people who have faith or belief in God should not express certainty. Certainly not in your presence.  You seem to want everyone who wishes to express religious belief to preface it with some sort of disclaimer related to uncertainty. With all due respect to you and Gordy, that is not fair to other people, and that is about the mildest thing I could say. 

Just let it go once in a while for God's sake (pun intended.) People are not going to obey you anyway.  They don't have to modify their beliefs in order to meet your standards. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.77  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.76    8 months ago
People who actually believe in God often have certainty.

Agreed.

The thing is why do you care.

This kind of question shows you are trolling.   You should understand why I say this.   When people ask you why you care about Trump, do you not find that to be offensive?   This is a forum.   We post here because we care to do so.   Just leave it at that.

You have repeatedly said that people who have faith or belief in God should not express certainty.

That simplification misses the point.   I am not telling them to not express certainty.   Rather I am explaining that making statements where you declare explicitly or implicitly that you cannot be wrong is unwise.   Such an assertion bears the burden of proof.   If one is okay with that burden then they should not be surprised if they are challenged on it.

Further, the only reason I explained any of this is because people are complaining about being challenged.  

You seem to want everyone who wishes to express religious belief to preface it with some sort of disclaimer related to uncertainty.

Again, I do not care what people do.   I am suggesting how to avoid the consequences of claiming (in effect) perfect knowledge.

People are not going to obey you anyway.

And yet again, I am not making any demands.  I am explaining why certain assertions are challenged.   Why do people (as you are doing here) feel compelled to spin what others write?   It is intellectually dishonest and just causes problems.   Your post is presented as though you are trying to be the voice of reason yet you ironically have issued an attack post that totally misrepresents what I have written.

Your post was pure trolling.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.78  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.61    8 months ago
What it is is a rational explanation

Really? Let's look at what you said.

Replace "god" with anything else, such as magical fairies. Do you see how silly that sounds? 

Oh, totally agree. It doesn't just sound silly, it is silly. Only someone who doesn't understand the issue would attempt to do such a thing. 

It's no difference when using god.

But Gordy, saying there's no difference is what makes it silly. May as well replace God with a crescent wrench. You see, no one puts forth a crescent wrench as an explanation for the universe any more than anyone puts forth fairies. Neither of those things are understood to have attributes that can account for creation. To say that you could replace God with something else and still come out the same could only be true if you could prove God doesn't exist. If you don't, it's hardly rational to attempt to replace God with something that can't account for creation.

Prove why such a level of evidence is necessary. 
Why settle for less than the best? It establishes the greatest level of veracity for a claim.

That doesn't prove why such a level of evidence is necessary, I'm afraid. It may be your personal preference, but there's nothing to compel someone else to accept it. Let me remind you of what the question is. 

As for acceptable "proof," objective empirical evidence would be sufficient (proof might be too high a bar) as that is the highest standard and quality of evidence there is.

Who decided such a level of evidence is what's acceptable? Why should that be the standard when it doesn't, nor can, apply to the greater part of our lives, meaning you don't move through your day constantly acting according to empirical evidence? How do you apply such a standard to something that the standard cannot apply to? How do you resolve the contradiction that empirical evidence, a part of the scientific method being universally agreed can't address the question of God but asking for it anyway? 

See previous statement. Anything else just sets the bar lower. It sure matters in science. Especially where credibility is concerned.

How is this answer not simply refusing to contemplate anything that science cannot address? Based on your other "reasoned" answers and comments over the years, it seems clear that the only valid lens through which to determine reality is science. For you, at least. I will remind you again to what I am referring. 

That is why science prefers objective, empirical evidence. Anything else is lesser "evidence" and more subject to error, bias, or less validity.

If we were speaking of science I would agree. We aren't. The subject is God. So, again, why does what science prefers matter at all? And, by the way, science doesn't prefer anything. It is a method, not a person. What you mean is that you prefer it. So would I, if I were dealing with what science was meant to deal with. 

Affirmative claims themselves warrant the condition of proving it.
It seems you haven't been paying attention. No one has to prove anything. But as a course of logic, claims bring the burden of proof.

You claim to have given a rational explanation but say stuff like this. Why would anyone have a burden of proof on the subject of God? We aren't talking about a subject science can address so how can there be a burden of proof? If the people in your life tell you that they love you do you require empirical proof of it before you believe them? I wonder how you'd go about getting your proof or evidence? 

If you are one of those unfortunate people who believe free will is an illusion and we're really just the result of electrochemical processes, would the question of love even make any sense? It seems pretty evident that there are plenty of examples like this where we can't have empirical evidence of something, yet we believe it and it's important to our well being. So, where's the burden of proof with God? A Spiritual Being who is said to relate to us spiritually. 

Also, forget the slight of hand TiG is trying to introduce. I am certain God exists. I do not doubt it at all. It would be idiotic to devote my life to God if I doubted His existence. However, that does not mean I can't be wrong. In all the years I've been on NV and NT, I've never heard anyone ever say there was not possible they could be wrong. Not one single time. I've never heard them say anything like it. So, you can both put that foolishness away right now. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.79  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.77    8 months ago
Your post was pure trolling.

To the contrary, my post was very straightforward. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.80  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.78    8 months ago
Also, forget the slight of hand TiG is trying to introduce.

Slight of hand??

I am certain God exists. I do not doubt it at all. It would be idiotic to devote my life to God if I doubted His existence. However, that does not mean I can't be wrong.

Then you are not claiming certainty.    You are, in effect, an agnostic theist.   You recognize that your belief could be wrong. 

In all the years I've been on NV and NT, I've never heard anyone ever say there was not possible they could be wrong. Not one single time. I've never heard them say anything like it. So, you can both put that foolishness away right now.

Good grief man.   I put that qualification in there for clarity.   I explicitly spelled out the 'certainty' element so that the meaning would be clear.   People of course do not state "I cannot possibly be wrong", it is implied.   When a gnostic atheist states: "No god exists" s/he does not state "... and I cannot be wrong" but I included that in my example too.

It would be entirely naive for you to believe that I was stating that only that specific language is used.   You are not naive thus you are being intellectually dishonest.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.81  Drakkonis  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.76    8 months ago

Don't listen to him, JR. You're not trolling and anyone with a brain can see that. As to why he cares, he believes the world would be vastly improved if everyone got rid of religion. This is a sort of crusade for that. About the only belief he can tolerate is a more or less deistic view of God, one where someone can say "yeah, there might be a god but if it exists, it doesn't have any practical meaning to humans." 

What's funny is this place will scream "proselytizing" at the slightest thing a Christian might say but totally okay with TiG telling everyone else what an acceptable belief in God might look like and we should all do that.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.82  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.79    8 months ago

It was a straightforward misrepresentation of what I have written.  

And since even after I have explained this yet again you come back as if you are not misrepresenting proves that you are indeed intentionally misrepresenting.

That is trolling.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.83  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.80    8 months ago
It would be entirely naive for you to believe that I was stating that only that specific language is used.   You are not naive thus you are being intellectually dishonest.

Another fun fact about talking with you. Whenever someone catches you at something, you just change what it "meant" and presto! You're not wrong again. Spare me.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.84  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.81    8 months ago
As to why he cares, he believes the world would be vastly improved if everyone got rid of religion.

Where did this come from?  

... with TiG telling everyone else what an acceptable belief in God might look like and we should all do that.

And yet again you misrepresent.    I offered a belief in a sentient creator that would have the least speculation.   You translate this into a demand.

Nonstop intellectual dishonesty from you Drakk.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.85  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.83    8 months ago
Whenever someone catches you at something, you just change what it "meant" and presto!

Just tossing out bullshit allegation after bullshit allegation.   Show me where I have done this.   Deliver the link.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.86  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.82    8 months ago

I barely commented on this seed over the past three days. But I do occasionally look at it and I keep seeing you insisting that people who believe in God should not include certainty in the expression of their beliefs.  Why?  You cant possibly think that people who actually believe in God and are not agnostic wont express certainty. So what is your point? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.87  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.86    8 months ago
I keep seeing you insisting that people who believe in God should not include certainty in the expression of their beliefs.  Why? 

Yet again, I just answered that.   I am not insisting that people who believe in God not express certainty, I am explaining why expressing certainty bears the burden of proof and thus opens one up for a challenge.

Note that I have used people who claim there is no god as my second example.   See?

How many times are you going to misrepresent this same point?    How ridiculous are you going to be here?

I barely commented on this seed over the past three days.

And now you come back to troll me.   Classy behavior, seeder.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.88  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.87    8 months ago

No one is trolling you. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.89  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.88    8 months ago

When you repeatedly misrepresent what I write ... even right after I write it ... that is most definitely trolling.

Even worse since you are the seeder.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.90  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.78    8 months ago
aying there's no difference is what makes it silly. May as well replace God with a crescent wrench. You see, no one puts forth a crescent wrench as an explanation for the universe any more than anyone puts forth fairies.

Putting forth god as an explanation is equally silly. They all have the same value and validity as an explanation.

To say that you could replace God with something else and still come out the same could only be true if you could prove God doesn't exist.

A logical fallacy. The only way god could be considered a more valid explanation is if you could prove (or provide evidence) that god exists. So far, no one has been able to do so.

That doesn't prove why such a level of evidence is necessary, I'm afraid.

You're willing to settle for less reliable or valid evidence? I'm not sure why anyone would unless it fits a personal bias or preconception.

but there's nothing to compel someone else to accept it.

I never said anyone's acceptance was necessary. If people want to settle for less or nothing, that's on them. 

Who decided such a level of evidence is what's acceptable?

It's not just about what's acceptable, but what is of greater validity, especially when discerning truth or fact. Objective, empirical evidence offers greater veracity for a claim than subjective evidence.

Why should that be the standard when it doesn't, nor can, apply to the greater part of our lives, meaning you don't move through your day constantly acting according to empirical evidence?

A strawman argument. I'm clearly speaking about evidence as it applies to claims made and its validity. 

How is this answer not simply refusing to contemplate anything that science cannot address? Based on your other "reasoned" answers and comments over the years, it seems clear that the only valid lens through which to determine reality is science.

Hello!? I have said before that science deals with reality. 

The subject is God.

It's not even that. The subject is about the affirmative claims for god.

And, by the way, science doesn't prefer anything. It is a method, not a person.

Science is a method, but objective evidence is preferred over subjective evidence! Either you do not understand what I am saying or you are playing games again. Which is it?

Why would anyone have a burden of proof on the subject of God? We aren't talking about a subject science can address so how can there be a burden of proof?

Once again Drak, the burden of proof falls on the one making the claim of certainty. That's been mentioned many times now! Have you not been following?

If you are one of those unfortunate people who believe free will is an illusion and we're really just the result of electrochemical processes, would the question of love even make any sense?

"Love" is the result of a biochemical reaction in the brain and the effect of hormones. All of which is measurable. What's your point?

So, where's the burden of proof with God?

Once again, it's on the one making the claim or certainty for a god. 

I am certain God exists. I do not doubt it at all. It would be idiotic to devote my life to God if I doubted His existence.

I'm sure you believe that.

However, that does not mean I can't be wrong.

At least you acknowledge the possibility your belief can be wrong. That's better than many theists wo not only think they are absolutely correct, but refuse to even consider the possibility they can be wrong.

In all the years I've been on NV and NT, I've never heard anyone ever say there was not possible they could be wrong

Depends on whom you ask. I've noticed that more from theists.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.91  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.85    8 months ago
Show me where I have done this.   Deliver the link.

Easy enough. 

None of that is proof. None of that is empirically true. You are just expressing opinion. Why are you settling for less than the best? 

I am sure that you understand the notion of burden of proof but you pretend otherwise.   I have explained this many times even several times here in this main thread so I will simply quote myself:

TiG @ 3.2.48  ☞

As I have already explained, if someone makes a claim ( and it does not matter if it is about God ) of certainty then they bear the   burden of proof .

If someone claims X is true and that   there is no way they are wrong , do you not see how they bear the   burden of proof ?

In contrast, if someone claims X is true but they acknowledge they might be wrong, they do NOT bear the burden of proof.

This is basic philosophy.

Burden:   The Earth is flat;  no chance that I am wrong.

No burden:  I believe the Earth is flat; but I could be wrong.

and

TiG @ 3.2.57  ☞ The burden of proof does not mean that the claimer must provide proof to his interlocutor.   If that is what you are thinking then strike that thought.  The burden of proof identifies a fallacy.   If a claim bears the burden of proof (because the claim is one of 100% certainty) and said proof is not supplied then the claim is fallacious.  

I go out of my way to note the important factor of: " there is no way they are wrong ".

So to be super specific, if you assert that your God exists with no possibility that your God might not exist then you bear the burden of proof.    But if you opine that you believe your God exists then no burden of proof applies.

So you claiming belief in God is essentially opinion unless you explicitly or by context connote that your assertion is 100% truth (cannot be false).   Then, and only then, do you bear the burden of proof.   Thus someone can and should challenge your claim.  

The supporting evidence of this can be found by Googling ' burden of proof ' and reading as many third party explanations you wish.


Finally, your theatrics here are based on you presenting statements made by Gordy where you declare they are claims of certainty and not normal opinion.   You then demand proof.   You think that this silly display is equivalent to when Gordy says "That's nice, prove it" in response to someone making a claim of certainty that their God exists.

That is, you do not find Gordy (or anyone here)   demanding proof on every statement  that people make in ordinary discourse.   The call for proof (and this really is intended to mean evidence not literal proof) is for assertions of certain truth (no way the assertion is wrong).

In short, you are being ridiculous.

So, what we have here is a wasted effort to cover a situation that is not relevant to this conversation since no one has ever, to my knowledge, said God exists and there's no possibility that He might not. All anyone has ever presented (unless you can provide evidence otherwise) was what they believed and why.

So, what could be the purpose of this waste of effort? Maybe to differentiate between the "That's nice, prove it" schtick I level against Gordy and what you guys leveling the same schtick against those who believe, say or intimate that God exists? What else could it be? And why would this differentiation be necessary? So you can "justify" a different standard for yourselves than you apply to your opponents. You inserted this "No possibility that God might not exist" crap as the reason. 

It can't be anything else, TiG, because by your own argument quoted above in blue, if no one is claiming that God exists and there's no possibility that He doesn't, then there's not the burden of proof you guys keep leveling at us. The fact that you do means you are inserting something that was never there in the first place to justify saying we have the burden of proof. 

What? More evidence? 

Good grief man.   I put that qualification in there for clarity .   I explicitly spelled out the 'certainty' element so that the meaning would be clear.   People of course do not state "I cannot possibly be wrong", it is implied .

Good job, TiG. I definitely got the clarification. Seems I was correct. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.92  Drakkonis  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.90    8 months ago

Okay. I see you're not going to provide any evidence for your claims. Thanks for your time, Gordy. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.93  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.89    8 months ago

I just finished looking through the comments on this seed. 

I have many of your comments collected on a note pad , but instead I will just post 3 of them, two by you and one by Gordy. 

Tig :  Further, if one does not have the proof, then it would be wise to not make a claim of certainty.   Make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you are wrong.  

-

Tig: Proof of God only arises when you make a claim like: "My god exists and there is no possibility I am wrong". That claim is irrational because of the 100% certainty. For you to have that certainty you would need to be omniscient. The challenge "Prove it" is challenging your implied claim of omniscience (perfect knowledge).

-

Gordy : If god's existence cannot be proven, then it's silly and disingenuous for someone (not saying you specifically) to make a claim of certainty regarding god. -----  As for acceptable "proof," objective empirical evidence would be sufficient (proof might be too high a bar) as that is the highest standard and quality of evidence there is. That is why science prefers objective, empirical evidence. Anything else is lesser "evidence" and more subject to error, bias, or less validity.

====================================================

In the bold sections I have posted here, we can clearly see that both you and Gordy have expressed intolerance for people who speak of God with certainty unless they provide proof. Gordy even says "empirical" evidence. 

This is what I was saying to you in the comment you called trolling. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.94  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.80    8 months ago
You are, in effect, an agnostic theist. 

Looking at the definition for agnostic atheist tells me that isn't even close to right, but if it makes you happy. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.95  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.91    8 months ago

Where do you show me making a statement and changing meaning?   You offer this large quote as a "waste of effort".   Where does that come from?

Looks like you are playing a baffle with bullshit game Drakk.  

Seems I was correct. 

Correct about what?    You made an allegation and I gave you the explanation.  

Note, Drakk, that I also use the gnostic atheist as an example.   Where do you see a gnostic atheist state:  "There is no god;  I cannot be wrong about this"?

You ignore that.

I have used this same approach of explicitly stating the certainty in my explanations for years now.   The reason is to avoid people being nit-picky and saying:  "well that is not necessarily an example of certainty". 

Seems you are going out of your way to try to invent allegations.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.96  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.93    8 months ago
In the bold sections I have posted here, we can clearly see that both you and Gordy have expressed intolerance for people who speak of God with certainty unless they provide proof. Gordy even says "empirical" evidence. 

I swear, you just refuse to listen.  Truly amazing.

My quotes are me explaining how to avoid burden of proof.   I keep writing this and you keep ignoring it.  Trolling!

Take your first point:

"if one does not have the proof, then it would be wise to not make a claim of certainty. "

I am saying that it is wise to not make a claim of certainty if you do not have the proof.   A claim of certainty bears the burden of proof.

More trolling.   What is your problem?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.97  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.94    8 months ago
Looking at the definition for agnostic atheist tells me that isn't even close to right, but if it makes you happy. 

You are a theist but you recognize that your belief might be wrong.   You just expressed that notion, right?

Drakk @3.4.78 ☞ I am certain God exists. I do not doubt it at all. It would be idiotic to devote my life to God if I doubted His existence. However, that does not mean I can't be wrong.

If that is true then you are an agnostic theist (but barely because you have no doubt but still recognize you might be wrong — seems like if you recognize you might be wrong then that is doubt).  

Anyway, going with the fact that you recognize that you do not have perfect knowledge, then, if you are consistent, you will never claim that your God exists as 100% truth because you recognize that you cannot possibly know that your conviction is actually true.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
Professor Principal
3.4.98  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.93    8 months ago

A belief can not be proved. You are free to believe it, but if you can't prove it, then it's still just a belief. It goes both ways, and both Gordy and Tig have acknowledged this. 

Using your example:

Tig: Proof of God only arises when you make a claim like: "My god exists and there is no possibility I am wrong". That claim is irrational because of the 100% certainty. For you to have that certainty you would need to be omniscient. The challenge "Prove it" is challenging your implied claim of omniscience (perfect knowledge).

Saying that my god exists and there is no possibility that I am wrong, is irrational. You can neither prove that there is a god, as you can not prove that there isn't one. Tig is not wrong.

Gordy : If god's existence cannot be proven, then it's silly and disingenuous for someone (not saying you specifically) to make a claim of certainty regarding god. ----- As for acceptable "proof," objective empirical evidence would be sufficient (proof might be too high a bar) as that is the highest standard and quality of evidence there is.That is why science prefers objective, empirical evidence. Anything else is lesser "evidence" and more subject to error, bias, or less validity.

Again, this goes to proof. No one can prove god's exsistance. You can say I feel it deeply so it is real to me, but you can not say without "proof" that god does exist (the same can be said the other way around, too).

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.99  TᵢG  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.4.98    8 months ago
and both Gordy and Tig have acknowledged this. 

Repeatedly.   Constantly.  

Gotta wonder the motivation of those who keep repeating the same allegation and repeatedly ignore the consistent explanation from the authors and substitute their own misrepresentations.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.100  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.96    8 months ago

These were YOUR words. 

Further, if one does not have the proof, then it would be wise to not make a claim of certainty.   Make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you are wrong.  

A lot of people would consider this a smoking gun illustrating what I said in the comment you call "trolling" 

The thing is why do you care. You have repeatedly said that people who have faith or belief in God should not express certainty. Certainly not in your presence.  You seem to want everyone who wishes to express religious belief to preface it with some sort of disclaimer related to uncertainty. With all due respect to you and Gordy, that is not fair to other people, and that is about the mildest thing I could say. 

In the quote you say "Make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you may be wrong"

This is what I said in the comment you called trolling

You have repeatedly said that people who have faith or belief in God should not express certainty.

You're busted. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.101  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.91    8 months ago
It can't be anything else, TiG, because by your own argument quoted above in blue, if no one is claiming that God exists and there's no possibility that He doesn't, then there's not the burden of proof you guys keep leveling at us.

Correct.  As I have stated repeatedly, if a person makes a claim of certainty (and that means a claim that cannot be wrong) then that claim bears the burden of proof.   If there is no claim of certainty I have stated there is no burden.

There is no way on the planet that you have not read that from me.   Yet here you are continuing your misrepresentation.  

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.102  Gordy327  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.92    8 months ago
Okay. I see you're not going to provide any evidence for your claims. Thanks for your time, Gordy. 

And I see you're just playing games as usual.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.103  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.100    8 months ago
These were YOUR words. 

Yes, I just quoted and explained that.   You have to actually read my responses.

In the quote you say "Make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you may be wrong"

What is the wild ass way you are spinning that??    I am explaining how to avoid the burden of proof.   Surely you can comprehend that.   To avoid the burden of proof, make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you may be wrong.

Buy a vowel John.   You are being ridiculous.

You're busted. 

Another allegation that defies your evidence. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.104  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.102    8 months ago

Ya think?   Good grief.   LOL

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.105  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.93    8 months ago
In the bold sections I have posted here, we can clearly see that both you and Gordy have expressed intolerance for people who speak of God with certainty unless they provide proof.

You're imagining things John.

Gordy even says "empirical" evidence. 

Yes, and? Is that a problem? I wanted that to be very clear, as some people have a different idea as to what constitutes "evidence."

A lot of people would consider this a smoking gun illustrating what I said in the comment you call "trolling" 

Then a lot of people would be wrong! TiG has been very clear in his explanations. It seems you are taking it the wrong way or personally. I highly doubt that is TiG's intent.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.106  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.103    8 months ago

I feel quite confident your own words illustrate the truth of what I said in the comment you call "trolling". 

The readers can draw their own conclusion. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.107  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.104    8 months ago
Ya think?

You know what, I'll go so far to say I'm 100% absolutely certain and there's no way I could be wrong! jrSmiley_9_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.108  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.105    8 months ago

There is no point explaining to John or Drakk.    They cannot support their allegations so they are both engaging in theater to make it seem as if they have something.

Unfortunately too many people turn to intellectual dishonesty when they have nothing.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.109  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.106    8 months ago
The readers can draw their own conclusion. 

Ok, after following this line of discussion, I conclude TiG is correct and you are not John! 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.110  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.106    8 months ago
I feel quite confident your own words illustrate the truth of what I said in the comment you call "trolling". 

Bullshit.   I do not believe that for a second.   No way that you cannot comprehend repeated explanations of such a simple concept.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.111  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.97    8 months ago
If that is true then you are an agnostic theist.  Agnostic theism agnostotheism  or  agnostitheism  is the  philosophical  view that encompasses both  theism  and  agnosticism . An agnostic theist believes in the existence of a God or Gods, but regards the basis of this proposition as  unknown or inherently unknowable . The agnostic theist may also or alternatively be agnostic regarding the properties of the God or gods that they believe in.

Theism is broadly defined as the belief in the existence of a  supreme being or deities . [1] [2] In common parlance, or when contrasted with deism , the term often describes the classical conception of God that is found in monotheism (also referred to as classical theism ) – or gods found in polytheistic religions—a belief in God or in gods without the rejection of revelation as is characteristic of deism . [3] [4]

Both from Wiki and serve well enough.

I have no doubt God exists in the sense I have no doubt the sun is the center of our solar system, but recognize that there may still be a way both are wrong in some way I cannot see. I believe God is a personal God who wants to be known and has in fact revealed Himself to Mankind. I believe God has a plan for us and I have a place in it. I believe that Jesus died for my sins and through his sacrifice I have access to God, both now and forever. 

Now, if you can find anything agnostic in that, knock yourself out. I imagine you seize on the idea that I know I could be wrong as evidence for agnosticism. If so, have at it. From my perspective, admitting I could be wrong is simply a lesson life has taught me. As happens to everyone, we are sometimes absolutely convinced of some event in our lives, only to find out later we wrong. Afterword, you spend hours wondering how you could have been so sure, but before being proved wrong, there was not a shred of doubt you were right.  There was  no "agnosticism" in your surety. 

But call me whatever pleases you. Mary Poppins on ice skates if it makes you happy. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.112  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.108    8 months ago
There is no point explaining to John or Drakk. 

I've noticed. Explanations have been ignored or twisted around.

 They cannot support their allegations so they are both engaging in theater to make it seem as if they have something.

Not to mention trying to (and failing) to turn it back on us.

Unfortunately too many people turn to intellectual dishonesty when they have nothing.

Indeed. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
3.4.113  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @3.4.105    8 months ago
 You have repeatedly said that people who have faith or belief in God should not express certainty. Certainly not in your presence. 

if one does not have the proof, then it would be wise to not make a claim of certainty.

-

You seem to want everyone who wishes to express religious belief to preface it with some sort of disclaimer related to uncertainty. 

Make a claim wherein you allow the possibility that you are wrong.

You're busted.  I wont bother with the other 10 comments I was going to post. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
3.4.114  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.113    8 months ago
You're busted. 

At what? I think you meant to make that reply to TiG.

I wont bother with the other 10 comments I was going to post. 

I doubt it would help your case anyway.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.115  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.111    8 months ago
I have no doubt God exists in the sense I have no doubt the sun is the center of our solar system, but recognize that there may still be a way both are wrong in some way I cannot see. I believe God is a personal God who wants to be known and has in fact revealed Himself to Mankind. I believe God has a plan for us and I have a place in it. I believe that Jesus died for my sins and through his sacrifice I have access to God, both now and forever. 

'I believe' is all in the realm of agnostic theist.   Having no doubt God exists I am interpreting as a statement of confidence.   Necessarily we must combine the two to produce that you see no way you could be wrong but accept that you might be wrong.   That remains in the realm of agnostic rather than gnostic theist.

Now, if you can find anything agnostic in that, knock yourself out.

It is right there.   Nowhere do you imply that you cannot be wrong.   To not be an agnostic theist you have to hold the position that your God exists (or whatever) and that there is no possibility that you are wrong about that.   Just being supremely confident does not make you a gnostic theist if you also recognize that you might be wrong.

This is why the gnostic theist and gnostic atheist positions are both irrational.

I imagine you seize on the idea that I know I could be wrong as evidence for agnosticism.

Well that fits the definition for 'agnostic theist' so, yes, of course.   But note I am not talking about agnosticism.   Agnostic theist is not a synonym for 'agnosticism'.

If so, have at it. From my perspective, admitting I could be wrong is simply a lesson life has taught me. As happens to everyone, we are sometimes absolutely convinced of some event in our lives, only to find out later we wrong. Afterword, you spend hours wondering how you could have been so sure, but before being proved wrong, there was not a shred of doubt you were right.  There was  no "agnosticism" in your surety. 

Is there a point in there somewhere?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.116  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.4.113    8 months ago

You are trolling, seeder.   I am not going to just keep repeating my rebuttals only to see you flat out ignore them.   You are playing a stubborn, childish game John.   It is now pathetic.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
PhD Guide
3.4.117  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.4.101    8 months ago
Correct.  As I have stated repeatedly, if a person makes a claim of certainty (and that means a claim that cannot be wrong) then that claim bears the burden of proof.   If there is no claim of certainty I have stated there is no burden. There is no way on the planet that you have not read that from me.   Yet here you are continuing your misrepresentation.  

No shit, Sherlock. I freaking quoted you, didn't I??? Do you think it escaped me who I was quoting? What the hell are you talking about? How does this even work, logically? You say I'm "Correct" and then say I'm misrepresenting you, while totally ignoring the post you're quoting that spells out in detail why I am most definitely not misrepresenting you. There's no twisting of words. There's no rewording going on. I quoted the whole thing so no context would be missing. And the best reply you have is "misrepresentation". You should be a lawyer. You could just claim the prosecution was just misrepresenting your client and they'd just let him go. 

You think I get pissed because you guys won't believe what I believe. Complete horseshit. I get pissed off because you pull crap like this while accusing me of misrepresentation and intellectual dishonesty

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
3.4.118  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.4.117    8 months ago

Now you are just grandstanding.   Calm down and try to make a real point.  

Your posts have been pure attack.   And it has been one-sided (have you noticed)?   They ignore my explanations, they misrepresent what I write.   I challenge you to deliver a link as proof and you deliver quotes that have nothing whatsoever with what you are to prove.

Get a grip, Drakk.   Calm down and try to engage me honestly.

 
 
 
Freewill
Junior Participates
3.5  Freewill  replied to  Thrawn 31 @3    8 months ago

This thread locked until Owner comes back. 

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Participates
4  Dismayed Patriot    8 months ago

I haven't met an atheist or scientist yet who claimed science 'disproved' God. Most atheists are 'agnostic atheists' who simply see no proof of God but wouldn't go so far as to say what humans might define as God definitely doesn't exist, that would be a 'gnostic atheist'. 

I've also never met a believer who could actual prove their brand or any brand of God, but there are far more gnostic theists (believe there definitely is a God regardless of proof) than there are gnostic atheists.

As for science, it doesn't take sides, it simply studies actual testable, definable universal phenomenon in an attempt to understand our universe better.

If there was a trail of verifiable evidence of anything supernatural science would follow it to its end regardless of what the results or conclusions might be, even if it proved there was a God. There is no trail to follow to prove there is no God, to prove such a thing you'd have to be able to look in every corner of the universe and possibly beyond. There is only the trail of truth to follow for true scientists. Now there will always be partisan scientists hired by parties invested in the results, like the scientists hired by the oil and gas industry who are tasked with undermining other scientific data for their own personal financial benefit. And the same is true of religions who get partisan scientists to try and undermine scientific data with wild fantasies in an effort to support their God theories hired by fundamentalist's like Ken Ham.

no matter what scientific evidence is amassed to explain the architecture of atoms, or the ways that neurons exchange chemical and electrical signals to create the sensations in our minds, or the manner in which the universe may have been born out of the quantum foam, science cannot disprove the existence of God

The fact is science doesn't make the claim "there is no God" therefore it has no burden of proof to disprove any God.

Theists do make a claim that "there is a God" therefore they do have the burden of proof but have been coming up short since God theories began. For thousands of years they have proclaimed unexplained phenomenon as their proof, the problem is that the more science explores and understands those phenomenon it ends up undermining the believers premises (which is often the unpinning of their faith) that those phenomenon are proof of their God. If they truly want to maintain their faith I recommend not trying to tie their faith to still unexplained phenomenon since they just never know when, through study, experimentation and observation, that phenomenon could be explained and prove to be free of any supernatural origin.

So while science cannot disprove God, it can be very useful for disproving the false narratives where believers claim unexplained phenomenon are evidence of their God. Lightning can no longer be simply attributed to angry deities in the sky because we now understand it far better now through science. And while that may be a bad thing for those who still believe in Zeus, most rational humans can see that science is truly doing us a favor by being able to explain many things that were once simply attributed to the supernatural.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
4.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4    8 months ago
Theists do make a claim that "there is a God" therefore they do have the burden of proof but have been coming up short since God theories began.

They dont have the burden of proof any more than an atheist does who says the big bang proves there was no need for God. 

This "burden of proof " business is an attempt by atheism to claim the default position. When neither side has any "proof" the default position is a mighty valuable thing to have. 

People who believe in God have no burden to "prove" the existence of God to you unless they are trying to force you to believe, which is basically impossible. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1.1  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1    8 months ago

The "burden of proof" is a concept of logic. The one who makes a claim of certainty bears the burden of proving the claim. A claim for or nay sans proof is logically indefensible. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
4.1.2  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1.1    8 months ago

I dont think there are very many religious believers who are into "proving " the existence of God. They take God's existence as a matter of course due to their faith. You keep wanting people who debate with you to "prove" God exists, when you are the only one in the discussion that cares about proof. 

The God of the Bible, the Koran, the Hindu or Buddhist scriptures, tribal religions, they are all cultural expressions. No one has to "prove" any of it.  Nor should any of them try to force their beliefs on others. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1.3  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.2    8 months ago

I only challenge those who claim with certainty that God exists or is responsible for something.   If someone says it's just their belief, then fine. But there are certain individuals who do claim god as fact, which invites challenge. Like I said, belief does not equal fact either.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
4.1.4  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1.3    8 months ago

No one can prove God exists, no one can prove God doesnt exist.  Its even in the article I seeded. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.5  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.4    8 months ago

Tru dat!

So if someone cannot satisfy the burden of proof, they should not make a claim of certainty.

Thus:  "no god exists" and "my god exists" are both unprovable claims (unless one plays semantic games with the definition of the word 'god').

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1.6  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.4    8 months ago

This is true. But it's the claims of certainty that warrant challenge. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.7  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1.6    8 months ago

Exactly.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Participates
4.1.8  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1    8 months ago
They don't have the burden of proof any more than an atheist does who says the big bang proves there was no need for God.

Someone saying there is "no need for God" is very different than saying "there is no God".

People who believe in God have no burden to "prove" the existence of God to you unless they are trying to force you to believe, which is basically impossible.

People who believe in God have no burden to "prove" the existence of God unless they are proselytizing aka trying to convince others of the veracity of their beliefs. As for the claim it's "basically impossible" to try and "force" others to believe, history proves it not only very possible but occurred with frequency.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
4.1.9  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.8    8 months ago
People who believe in God have no burden to "prove" the existence of God unless they are proselytizing aka trying to convince others of the veracity of their beliefs.

Proselytizers dont use logic, they use emotion. They dont have any burden of proof. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1.10  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.9    8 months ago
Proselytizers dont use logic, they use emotion.

At least that much is true.

They dont have any burden of proof. 

Wrong!  They make the claim, they bear the burden of proof. An emotional state does not automatically absolve them of that. It just likely means they really can't prove their claim and is basically BS!

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
4.1.11  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1.10    8 months ago

No , you're wrong. No one has to prove to you that God exists according to your "science" prerequisites in order to promote their faith. 

You are talking about your own preferences. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.12  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.9    8 months ago

Depends on the claim.   "My god exists;  no way I am wrong" bears the burden of proof.   "I believe my god exists" does not.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.13  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.11    8 months ago

He is referencing the philosophical burden of proof.    Hardly his invention.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1.14  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.11    8 months ago
No , you're wrong. No one has to prove to you that God exists according to your "science" prerequisites in order to promote their faith.

It has nothing to do with faith or not. It's all about the claim made. 

You are talking about your own preferences. 

I'm talking about logic and logical fallacies.

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
Professor Guide
4.1.15  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.4    8 months ago

That is why I call myself a liberal agnostic.  I don't believe there is a God but who am I to say that there isn't.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
4.1.16  Texan1211  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.11    8 months ago

This is probably a shock, but I agree with you on this.

People who believe in God or a god do not have any obligation to prove anything to anyone.

Period.

No matter what they claim.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.17  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @4.1.16    8 months ago
People who believe in God or a god do not have any obligation to prove anything to anyone.

That is correct, there is no obligation to prove anything for mere belief.

And even when someone declares with certainty that their god exists and that they could not possibly be wrong, there is no obligation for them to prove anything.

They bear the burden of proof, not an obligation to deliver proof.

Do you understand the difference here?

The burden of proof is a liability on their argument.   A claim of certainty that does not satisfy the burden of proof that it bears becomes an unproven assertion.   If this claim is in an argument then the argument will be unsound. 

So, in simple terms, the burden of proof speaks to the demonstrated veracity of the claim and its use in an argument.    It is not some legal or moral obligation to actually deliver the proof.

This is logic we are talking about here.

So, if someone says:

My god exists (100% certainty)

They bear the burden of proof because of that certainty.  

Thus someone can legitimately challenge them to deliver the proof.

If they do not deliver the proof, their claim is basically bullshit.   That is the consequence.   They are not obliged to defend their claim; they would only do so if they cared about the veracity of the claim as seen by others.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
4.1.18  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.17    8 months ago

Look, this is the exact same argument I have seen here many, many times.

I believe in God. I don't care if anyone else does.

God exists for me.

I have no need to explain, justify, or validate my faith.

I don't agree with people who proselytize, and I don't do it myself--ever.

I do not ask anyone to prove their faith or the existence of God, because I realize that it really is not any of my business what others believe.

Seems like a monumental waste of time to me, so I am always wondering what the people who demand proof of God get out of making those demands.

Especially when they know that God's existence can not be proven.

I don't see any point in wasting hours on here debating whether He exists or not. It accomplishes ZERO.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.19  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @4.1.18    8 months ago

Did you not read what I wrote?  

I have no need to explain, justify, or validate my faith.

Nobody is forcing you to do so.

I am always wondering what the people who demand proof of God get out of making those demands.

Again, Texan, I have explained this in very clear terms.   You comment as if people approach you and demand that you deliver proof of God.   But that is not what happens in this forum (to my knowledge).   Proof of God only arises when you make a claim like:  "My god exists and there is no possibility I am wrong".   That claim is irrational because of the 100% certainty.   For you to have that certainty you would need to be omniscient.   The challenge "Prove it" is challenging your implied claim of omniscience (perfect knowledge).

Especially when they know that God's existence can not be proven.

I doubt anyone challenging you as above thinks you can deliver proof.   That is not the point.   The point is to challenge your impossible claim.   If your claim was something like "I believe in my god" then the challenge of "Prove it" does not apply and makes no sense.   It would be asking you to prove that you hold your stated belief.   No, Texan, it is the claim of certainty that is challenged.

Another example:  "The Earth is flat; no way that I am wrong" is a claim of certainty that logically should be challenged with "Prove it" whereas "I think the Earth is flat;  but I could be wrong on that" is not a claim of certainty and "Prove it" does not apply.

I don't see any point in wasting hours on here debating whether He exists or not.

I almost never see a debate on whether or not God exists.   The debate is usually about something else where the premise that God exists is foundational to their argument.   In that case, that implied premise is often exposed and noted as necessary to the argument and thus needs to be proved true.   That is logic 101:  all premises of an argument must be true in order for the argument to be sound.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
4.1.20  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.19    8 months ago
Did you not read what I wrote?  

Of course I read what you fucking wrote.

Nobody is forcing you to do so.

Not anything I have claimed, so what is your point?

Obviously, whatever point I made escaped your understanding, so I'll just leave it alone for now.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
4.1.21  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.19    8 months ago

Have any of your comments on this seed addressed the premises of the seeded article?

It is not the inability of science to explain some physical phenomenon that shows we cannot disprove the existence of a creative power (i.e., God). Science is a work in progress, and phenomena that science cannot explain now may be explained 100 years from now. Before the 18th century, people had no explanation for lightning. The reason that science cannot disprove the existence of God, in my opinion, is that God, as understood by all human religions, exists outside time and space. God is not part of our physical universe (although God may choose to enter the physical universe at times). God is not subject to experimental tests. Either you believe or you don’t believe. Thus, no matter what scientific evidence is amassed to explain the architecture of atoms, or the ways that neurons exchange chemical and electrical signals to create the sensations in our minds, or the manner in which the universe may have been born out of the quantum foam, science cannot disprove the existence of God — any more than a fish can disprove the existence of trees. Likewise, no matter what gaps exist in current scientific knowledge, no matter what baffling good deeds people do, no matter what divine and spiritual feelings people have, theology cannot prove the existence of God. The most persuasive evidence of God, according to the great philosopher and psychologist William James in his landmark book “The Varieties of Religious Experience” (1902), is not physical or objective or provable. It is the highly personal transcendent experience.

You continue to insist that people who want to profess belief in God do so through scientific evidence. As the passages above show us, that is not the way it works. 

Moreover, very few people claim to be able to "prove" the existence of God, it is not even something that "believers" normally think about. You think about it and Gordy thinks about it. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.22  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @4.1.20    8 months ago
Of course I read what you fucking wrote.

Your reply reads as though none of it sunk in.

Yet another angry, trollish comment in reply to a serious attempt by me to communicate with you.  

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
4.1.23  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.22    8 months ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.24  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.21    8 months ago
You continue to insist that people who want to profess belief in God do so through scientific evidence.

Where do I insist that?   Deliver a quote.

Moreover, very few people claim to be able to "prove" the existence of God, it is not even something that "believers" normally think about. You think about it and Gordy thinks about it

Nobody can prove the existence or inexistence of god (barring a definition of 'god' that could indeed be shown to not exist as defined due to contradiction).

Obviously you have not been reading my posts.   I have explained this now several times right here in this seed.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1.25  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.21    8 months ago
The reason that science cannot disprove the existence of God, in my opinion, is that God, as understood by all human religions, exists outside time and space.

Where do you find me suggesting that science can disprove the existence of God (where God, in this case, is defined as supernatural)?    What, precisely, is your complaint?    Making vague complaints makes it impossible for me to intelligently respond to same.   I have to guess at what you are talking about.

Did you not even read my response @5?

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
4.1.26  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.22    8 months ago
Your reply reads as though none of it sunk in.

Then that is merely YOUR Interpretation. [deleted]