Do God/s exist? Probably not.

  
By:  Gordy327  •  7 months ago  •  385 comments


Do God/s exist? Probably not.
" It seems to me that the idea of a personal God is an anthropological concept which I cannot take seriously....Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death." ---Albert Einstein

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Religious and not News Chat


God/s is a concept which has permeated human cultures and societies throughout history. The belief and worship of god/s can be traced back thousands of years and it's not unreasonable to assume that even primitive humans in individual tribes may have had a concept of gods before the establishment of permanent settlements and civilization. While the belief in god/s helped bring communities closer together or used to explain natural phenomenon which ancient humans did not understand, it's unlikely that any god/s actually existed. Here's why:

First is the obvious lack of any objective, empirical evidence or proof. Religion and belief in various god/s has exited in human societies for thousands of years. Yet, in all that time, not one religion has ever substantiated any claim for the existence of god/s. One would think that over thousands of years of belief and worship of god/s, one would at least be able to come up with a shred of empirical evidence to substantiate the basis of belief and/or claims made based on it. But that clearly not the case. Without any evidence, there is no logical reason to assume any god exists, or has ever existed. 

Second, which god is "real" or "true?" Many religions around the world believe in different god/s or claim their god (and by extension their religion) is "true," which also implies all others are false. But not all gods and religions can be "true." Neither have any religion ever been able to establish their particular god/s to be the "true" one. It's quite arrogant to think, not to mention claim, that one's god/s is true and everyone else is false or wrong. Some will go so far as to even vilify differing beliefs, religions, or god/s. By the same token, many societies believed in and worshipped various god/s at some point in history. The Greek and Roman Pantheons is a well known example. But today, those gods and belief in them are relegated to mythology. The same holds true for other religions and gods in history. At some point, many religions and gods are abandoned, possibly supplanted with newer or different god/s. They believed in their pantheon of gods. So if they "got it wrong," as it were, then who's to say the same isn't true for all god/s?

Third, religious texts or sources (ex. the bible) are often cited as "proof" of a god/s. What some people fail to understand is that citing such works as "proof" is not actully proof of anything. It's a logical fallacy. Logical fallacies like that do not make a compelling case for the existence of god/s. It's essentially ancient people writing down their beliefs, nothing more. Also, many cite "miracles," unusual or extreme events, or their own "experiences" as proof of god/s. Of course, such things are subjective and anecdotal, based on something along the lines of "because I (or they) said so." Such experiences are often personal and based on emotion and/or ignorance. 

Speaking of ignorance, the lack of understanding of the natural world and phenomenon is a good reason why many thought there's were gods. It's a convenient explanation. Primitive people saw the sun rise and "move" across the sky while providing light and heat. They had no concept of a star's fusion process or the Earth's rotation. So naturally, there must be a god pulling the sun across the sky (i.e. Apollo of Greek myth). Thunder and lightning? Yep, a god is angry. Crops and plants growing? Definitely the work of a fertility god/dess. Seasonal or weather changes? You better believe it's due to a god. Get the idea? Many religions had similar kind of gods to explain all sorts of natural phenomenon. But as science developed and our knowledge and understanding grew, people learned how or why such things happened. Science can even refute certain religious claims. God/s are no longer needed as an explanation. As science continues to learn more, the less and less god/s are needed as an explanation for anything, making them less and less plausible. But then, god/s were never really a valid explanation for anything. But rather a failure to explain anything. It boggles the mind that in today's technological and information era, there are still those who cling to silly superstitions like god/s as real or true or as an explanation for things. 


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Gordy327
1  author  Gordy327    7 months ago

Still no proof or even evidence for any god/s. Not surprising really.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @1    7 months ago
or even evidence

Might as well start off with an untruth I guess.

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.1  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @1.1    7 months ago
Might as well start off with an untruth I guess.

If you disagree, then produce the evidence for review.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.2  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @1.1.1    7 months ago

We've been through this. You declare there is "no evidence." I point at evidence and you respond with "there is no empirical evidence." The goalposts keep moving. It's a waste.

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.3  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.2    7 months ago
We've been through this. You declare there is "no evidence." I point at evidence and you respond with "there is no empirical evidence." The goalposts keep moving. It's a waste.

Do you understand what constitutes evidence? Do I really need to explain that every time I use the term "evidence?" So again, if you disagree, then produce the evidence for review.

 
 
 
Dig
1.1.4  Dig  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.2    7 months ago
I point at evidence

Out of curiosity, what did you point at?

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.5  TᵢG  replied to  Dig @1.1.4    7 months ago

I was going to ask the same question until I saw your post.

I suspect the evidence will not be something that would be formally verifiable.   Something akin to all the people who have testified to have a relationship with God;  a relationship that they claim exists but cannot substantiate with real evidence.

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.6  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.5    7 months ago
Something akin to all the people who have testified to have a relationship with God;  a relationship that they claim exists but cannot substantiate with real evidence.

Such claims are also subjective and anecdotal. There is nothing objective to collaborate or verify such claims, much less claims for the existence of god/s. At best, they go by mere feelings.

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.7  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.5    7 months ago
I was going to ask the same question until I saw your post.

I'm still waiting for evidence which makes my statement untrue. I'm having doubts I'll get any.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.8  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.5    7 months ago
I suspect the evidence will not be something that would be formally verifiable

And you'd be right. But that standard is arbitrary at best. I would say it's even false and inappropriate.

Suppose we could measure the atomic weight of God's beard? We'd still have a pointless debate about whether it was a real beard or whether it really belonged to God.

Something akin to all the people who have testified to have a relationship with God

Maybe they have. Who are you to say?

but cannot substantiate with real evidence

It's your personal choice to decide that other people's experiences don't "qualify" as evidence. That's fine for you. For others, it's compelling evidence. You don't get to say for all people and for all time that this or that type of evidence is "real."

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.9  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @1.1.7    7 months ago
I'm still waiting for evidence which makes my statement untrue.

God himself could appear and raise your own great grandparents from the dead. You still wouldn't consider that proof of God.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.10  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.8    7 months ago
And you'd be right. But that standard is arbitrary at best.

We can always use the scientific method.   

Maybe they have. Who are you to say?

I do not say.   I ask for evidence.   If none is provided, I am not convinced.

It's your personal choice to decide that other people's experiences don't "qualify" as evidence. That's fine for you. For others, it's compelling evidence. You don't get to say for all people and for all time that this or that type of evidence is "real."

Will you please cease trying to make this personal Tacos!.   I have made no such demands and have never stated that I am in charge of what qualifies as evidence.   Debate the logic, rather than try to portray me in an ugly light.

We have a very well established standard for evidence that already exists.   It is routinely proposes as the means for validating evidence of God.   The scientific method is the obvious choice.   If someone can put forth evidence that can be verified using the most common method we have of verifying truth then that seems to me to be reasonable.

What is not reasonable is to simply accept someone's word.   My example of alien abduction should make it clear why that is not quality evidence.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.11  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.9    7 months ago
God himself could appear and raise your own great grandparents from the dead. You still wouldn't consider that proof of God.

Now that is an example of evidence.   It is not conclusive evidence for a supreme entity who created everything, but it certainly would be impressive in support of that claim.   It would, however, be great evidence of the claim that the entity can create living human individuals.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
1.1.12  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.2    7 months ago
I point at evidence

Where?

The goalposts keep moving

The goalposts, as specified in his post is "any objective, empirical evidence or proof".

It's a waste.

Well it's a waste for you to spend any time or effort attempting to prove something with absolutely zero evidence.

There are folk who claim to have been spoken to by God, there are those who claim they are prophets and some who claim to have been to heaven and returned. There are also people who claim they were abducted by aliens. None of them have any evidence, not a hair, not a smidgen, not an atom of empirical proof of anything supernatural. An entire universe full of "super natural" but not a whiff of "supernatural".

So yes, you should stop wasting anyone else's time with spurious proclamations like "I point at evidence" when you're clearly standing there pointing at nothing but thin air.

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.13  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.9    7 months ago
God himself could appear and raise your own great grandparents from the dead. You still wouldn't consider that proof of God.

That doesn't actually address my statement. However, that would be compelling evidence. Although, it does not establish certainty of a god. It's still supports the notion of a god or god's supposed abilities. So that raises the credibility of claims regarding a god.

And you'd be right. But that standard is arbitrary at best. I would say it's even false and inappropriate.

Which is why such "evidence" and the claims based on it, is suspect at best. 

Maybe they have.

People can and do claim all sorts of things, including outrageous ones. But they offer nothing to support those claims.

Who are you to say?

Someone who is not convinced nor accepts such claims without evidence.

It's your personal choice to decide that other people's experiences don't "qualify" as evidence. That's fine for you.

Actual, valid evidence is not based on personal preference. It's based on what is objectively empirical, verifiable, testable, and falsifiable. 

For others, it's compelling evidence.

Which means it's nothing more than a personal feeling or confirmation bias. Subjective and anecdotal at best.

You don't get to say for all people and for all time that this or that type of evidence is "real."

The scientific method is good for establishing that. Just because some people think it's "real" doesn't make it so by default. Neither should such claims be accepted outright or as fact without question or evidence.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.14  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @1.1.13    7 months ago
However, that would be compelling evidence. Although, it does not establish certainty of a god.

Exactly. That’s my point. You cannot even say that the best evidence I could imagine would be sufficient for you. This is not to say this is your fault. It is what it is. You do not know how to prove God does or does not exist. That is fundamental. If you cannot design a valid experiment or standard of proof, you can’t judge proposed evidence.

We see, therefore, how invalid your (or anyone else’s) criticisms are of the evidence other people are willing to accept. It’s pointless to demand evidence - of any kind - when clearly no level of evidence could ever possibly be acceptable to you.

To sum up and restate: you cannot judge evidence as invalid if you cannot say what evidence would be sufficient. It is useless, as well, to say “empirical evidence” or “verifiable evidence” if you cannot define how such evidence could be verified.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
1.1.15  sandy-2021492  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.14    7 months ago

TiG, Gordy, and others rely on the scientific method.  In the scientific method, strictly speaking, nothing is ever proven 100%.  So, no, the existence of a god or gods would never be considered to be proven without a doubt.  It would be either strongly supported, weakly supported, or not supported, depending on the evidence presented.  A lack of evidence necessarily translates into a lack of support.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.16  Tacos!  replied to  sandy-2021492 @1.1.15    7 months ago
In the scientific method, strictly speaking, nothing is ever proven 100%

That’s fine. Pick your percentage, then. 99%? 90%? It’s up to you. Then you have to figure out how to design an experiment that will meet that standard.

You also have to demonstrate that your experiment will reveal what you claim it reveals. For example, anyone can go through some exercise or collect various data, but it doesn’t lead to an inexorable conclusion just because someone claims it does.

Only then can we even begin to speak of satisfactory evidence.

In the meantime, if others say they are satisfied, who are you, or Gordy, or TiG - or anyone else - to say they are wrong?

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.17  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.14    7 months ago
Exactly. That’s my point. You cannot even say that the best evidence I could imagine would be sufficient for you.

Do you consider the sheer magnitude of the claim you are seeking to support with evidence?

You are, in effect, attempting to provide convincing evidence of a sentient creator of everything with impressive characteristics which include:

  • omnipotence
  • omniscience
  • omnipresence
  • omnibenevolence
  • perfection
  • singular
  • eternal

You offer the hypothetical evidence of:

Tacos!@1.1.9God himself could appear and raise your own great grandparents from the dead. You still wouldn't consider that proof of God.

That certainly would evidence an ability to reanimate dead tissue (and to recreate the decayed parts including the contents of the brain).   That would be incredibly impressive and —as I noted in one of my comments— would be in support of a claim of being able to create a human being.   But that is quite a big difference from the grand claim of being the sentient creator of everything with the aforementioned characteristics (especially omniscience).

So your hypothetical evidence would fall very short of the grand claim.

It’s pointless to demand evidence - of any kind - when clearly no level of evidence could ever possibly be acceptable to you.

There is no level of evidence that would be acceptable to Gordy?   That might be true, but I missed where Gordy stated that.

To sum up and restate: you cannot judge evidence as invalid if you cannot say what evidence would be sufficient.

Is this your rule?   Seems to me that Gordy might tell you that he just does not know what would convince him of such a grand claim.   He could suggest to you that he is open to being convinced even if he is not sure what would do the trick.   He might even argue that if God wants to convince him then surely God is smart enough to figure out a way to do so.   

It is useless, as well, to say “empirical evidence” or “verifiable evidence” if you cannot define how such evidence could be verified.

Well I think you are taking on too difficult a task.   I doubt any mere human being is capable of delivering persuasive evidence that a sentient creator of everything exists with the aforementioned properties.   That is an amazingly tall order.

The question I would ask, considering this, is what makes a human being believe this particular entity must exist?   What is the evidence that believers find persuasive to believe in such a grandiose sentient entity?

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.18  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.14    7 months ago
That’s my point. You cannot even say that the best evidence I could imagine would be sufficient for you.

I acknowledged that it would be acceptable evidence. I said it does not conclusively prove there's a god. Big difference.

You do not know how to prove God does or does not exist. That is fundamental.

First, establishing proof of any kind would require solid evidence, of which there is none whatsoever for any god/s. Second, one cannot prove the non-existence of something. The burden of proof lies on those making the affirmative claim.

If you cannot design a valid experiment or standard of proof, you can’t judge proposed evidence.

That "standard of proof" is best determined by the scientific method. Not by someone's "feelings" or mere beliefs.

It’s pointless to demand evidence - of any kind - when clearly no level of evidence could ever possibly be acceptable to you.

Incorrect. I have said in the past that objective, empirical evidence is acceptable. What's pointless is merely accepting anything anyone claims, usually based on nothing more than a feeling or emotion. Would you blindly accept a person's claim, especially if it was more extraordinary like god? The scientific method is the best means to establish the validity of such claims. Just because someone makes a claim about something doesn't make that claim fact.

To sum up and restate: you cannot judge evidence as invalid if you cannot say what evidence would be sufficient. It is useless, as well, to say “empirical evidence” or “verifiable evidence” if you cannot define how such evidence could be verified.

I already cited the scientific method. I can't make it any clearer than that.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.19  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.16    7 months ago
You also have to demonstrate that your experiment will reveal what you claim it reveals. For example, anyone can go through some exercise or collect various data, but it doesn’t lead to an inexorable conclusion just because someone claims it does.

Indeed!   Now read my comment @1.1.17 because that is one of my points.   The grander the claim (or hypothesis) the more challenging it is to evidence.

In the meantime, if others say they are satisfied, who are you, or Gordy, or TiG - or anyone else - to say they are wrong?

Depends on the claim.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.20  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.17    7 months ago
The question I would ask, considering this, is what makes a human being believe this particular entity must exist?   What is the evidence that believers find persuasive to believe in such a grandiose sentient entity?

You are, of course, free to ask anything you like. However, it is disingenuous and unfair to argue that evidence if you can’t define what evidence would be acceptable. And as you have already indicated, that is likely undefinable.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
1.1.21  sandy-2021492  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.16    7 months ago
In the meantime, if others say they are satisfied, who are you, or Gordy, or TiG - or anyone else - to say they are wrong?

Logical beings.  If I told you I was typing this while sitting sidesaddle on a unicorn, riding through an enchanted forest (with WiFi, even!) made of crystals, on the way to spend the night with my fairy godmother in her castle, who are you to naysay me?  Or would I need rather more evidence than "because I say so" to be taken seriously?

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.  In the lack of evidence, rational people doubt.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.22  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.20    7 months ago
However, it is disingenuous and unfair to argue that evidence if you can’t define what evidence would be acceptable. And as you have already indicated, that is likely undefinable.

The scientific method has been proposed as the means for qualifying evidence against the claim of the existence of a god.   The approach would be to first define the god so that we all know what we are talking about.    Then the task is to provide evidence that is sound by modern protocol of the scientific method and correlates with the definition of said god.

What is the definition of god and what supporting evidence can you offer per the above?  

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.1.23  author  Gordy327  replied to  sandy-2021492 @1.1.21    7 months ago
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.  In the lack of evidence, rational people doubt.

Indeed. It's about what people claim vs. what can they demonstrate via evidence or ideally (but not likely prove). Mere claims is not evidence of anything and logically should not be accepted as such.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
1.1.24  Drakkonis  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.14    7 months ago
To sum up and restate: you cannot judge evidence as invalid if you cannot say what evidence would be sufficient. It is useless, as well, to say “empirical evidence” or “verifiable evidence” if you cannot define how such evidence could be verified.

Pretty good summation. But further, their goal is less about what would constitute evidence and more about insisting on the arena for said evidence. That is, the scientific method. All their faith is in the scientific method, which is why they keep going on and on about it, even though they'll tell you all day long that the scientific method cannot even address the question of the supernatural. Rather circular when you think about it. Science can't address God but won't believe God exists except through science. 

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.25  Tacos!  replied to  sandy-2021492 @1.1.21    7 months ago
Logical beings.

Just because you believe you are right, that doesn't prove that you are more logical than anyone else.

who are you to naysay me?

In that situation, I am someone who - like anyone - has access to extensive data on the surface of the Earth, its flora, fauna, and geology. It is simple, using this data to demonstrate that the enchanted crystal forest doesn't exist.

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

Not always. "The Earth is round" is a pretty extraordinary claim, but all you have to do is look at it to see that it's true.

And anyway, as I have said, you have to define what you mean by "extraordinary evidence." You can't just keep saying "that's not good enough." You have to say what would be good enough or there is no justification for rejecting any evidence that comes your way.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.26  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.22    7 months ago
Then the task is to provide evidence that is sound

You're just restating the same failing using a different word. Empirical evidence, verifiable evidence, and now sound evidence. It's all the same problem with a different label.

what supporting evidence can you offer per the above?  

You are the person who wants to be convinced. I can't keep trying evidence, hoping that one day you'll decide it's good enough. What a waste of time! And how thoroughly unscientific, to boot.

I have said it over and over. For believers, whatever evidence they have seen and considered, it is enough for them. You have no grounds for telling other people their beliefs are wrong and they don't owe you anything in terms of proof.

You have to decide what would be enough for you. Until you can define it, you have no business arguing it.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.27  Tacos!  replied to  Drakkonis @1.1.24    7 months ago
Rather circular when you think about it. Science can't address God but won't believe God exists except through science.

Exactly correct. Well stated.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.28  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @1.1.24    7 months ago
Pretty good summation. But further, their goal is less about what would constitute evidence and more about insisting on the arena for said evidence. That is, the scientific method.

Propose an alternative that produces similar levels of verifiable, quality results.

All their faith is in the scientific method, ...

Why use the word 'faith' when you know that is a complete misrepresentation?   This is not new to you.   It is not faith in the scientific method but rather confidence based on the verifiable results it has produced and the accuracy of same.

... which is why they keep going on and on about it, even though they'll tell you all day long that the scientific method cannot even address the question of the supernatural.

Cannot 'even' address the supernatural implies that this is a deficiency in the scientific method.    Where do you find anything that 'addresses' the 'supernatural';  not just claims, but actually does with verifiable results?    Also, I would argue that the scientific method does indeed 'address' the supernatural in the sense that it has, over time, explained much of which was thought to be supernatural.   For example, epileptic seizures were once thought to be demonic possession.   Volcanic activity was once thought to be an angry god (Vulcan).   Funny thing, when the supernatural is explained it simply becomes the natural.

Rather circular when you think about it. Science can't address God but won't believe God exists except through science. 

Science could address God.   Define God.   Present evidence in support of God.   Engage the scientific method.


Lots of complaints, but you did not offer any evidence of God. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.29  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.26    7 months ago
You're just restating the same failing using a different word. Empirical evidence, verifiable evidence, and now sound evidence. It's all the same problem with a different label.

I see you have not provided evidence.   Just complaints.

You are the person who wants to be convinced. I can't keep trying evidence, hoping that one day you'll decide it's good enough. What a waste of time! And how thoroughly unscientific, to boot.

I still see no evidence.  Now it is excuses.

I have said it over and over. For believers, whatever evidence they have seen and considered, it is enough for them. You have no grounds for telling other people their beliefs are wrong and they don't owe you anything in terms of proof.

Strawman.   I am asking for evidence.   And yes, they do not owe me anything.   I have asked for evidence and now the response is deflection.

You have to decide what would be enough for you. Until you can define it, you have no business arguing it.

Arguing what?   I have asked for what you would consider persuasive evidence.   Clearly you have nothing to offer.   So why are you here?

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
1.1.30  sandy-2021492  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.25    7 months ago
In that situation, I am someone who - like anyone - has access to extensive data on the surface of the Earth, its flora, fauna, and geology. It is simple, using this data to demonstrate that the enchanted crystal forest doesn't exist.

It's an invisible forest only I can see.  My fairy godmother (whom only I can see) designed it so.  My faith in it is evidence that it exists.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.31  TᵢG  replied to  sandy-2021492 @1.1.30    7 months ago

As a note, if someone were to define 'god' as omniscient and include that 'god' could be surprised, learn or change its mind, I would suggest that said god cannot exist because it is a defined contradiction.

Tacos has indicated that evidence can be used to show a particular defined entity cannot exist.   I agree.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
1.1.32  sandy-2021492  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.31    7 months ago

Agreed.

 
 
 
Dig
1.1.33  Dig  replied to  Drakkonis @1.1.24    7 months ago
All their faith is in the scientific method, which is why they keep going on and on about it, even though they'll tell you all day long that the scientific method cannot even address the question of the supernatural.

It can't address the supernatural because the supernatural is a baseless, fictional construct. It's imaginary. It doesn't exist.

You can't work with something that doesn't exist.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.34  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.29    7 months ago

Here is the entirety of TiG's comment. 

I see you have not provided evidence.   Just complaints.

I still see no evidence.  Now it is excuses.

Strawman.   I am asking for evidence.   And yes, they do not owe me anything.   I have asked for evidence and now the response is deflection.

Arguing what?   I have asked for what you would consider persuasive evidence.   Clearly you have nothing to offer.   So why are you here?

The very same TiG who likes to complain about people not discussing the topic and claims instead they are making it personal. And if you disagree, it's "meta." Look in the mirror, TiG. Holy shit!

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.35  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.34    7 months ago

When you make a comment that is thoughtful you get a likewise thoughtful response from me.   When you engage in tactics as with your prior comment you will get a response appropriate to your comment.

Here again, you focus on me with meta.   

Try to formulate a thoughtful comment and see what happens.

 
 
 
Veronica
1.1.36  Veronica  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @1.1.12    7 months ago
There are also people who claim they were abducted by aliens.

People that have claimed to have seen Bigfoot, but no evidence means????  Does he exist?

 
 
 
Freefaller
1.1.37  Freefaller  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.25    7 months ago
"The Earth is round" is a pretty extraordinary claim, but all you have to do is look at it to see that it's true.

Just to throw a wrench in this the earth is not actually round it is an irregularly shaped ellipsoid.  People used to think it was round and some still do but science and of course the scientific method have proven that not to be the case.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
1.1.38  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Veronica @1.1.36    7 months ago
People that have claimed to have seen Bigfoot, but no evidence means????  Does he exist?

While Bigfoot's existence remains to be proven, there is actual evidence of some large bipedal creature living in some ancient forests so the claims are not just based on personal accounts or sightings. Some even claim to have video evidence, and while the footage has yet to be authenticated, its certainly more compelling than peoples tales of being abducted by aliens or claims of some personal experience of God.

 
 
 
Veronica
1.1.39  Veronica  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @1.1.38    7 months ago

So in other words:  He MAY exist or he MAY NOT exist.  Do ghosts exist?  Some people claim they do.  Can I work magick?  I think it all depends on what you want to believe.  I feel as long as that belief does not infringe on the lives of others then it matters not to me if they have evidence or proof.  However, when they try to make their unsubstantiated beliefs part of the laws of the country I live in - then I have a problem with it.   Then I would need irrefutable evidence.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.40  Tacos!  replied to  Freefaller @1.1.37    7 months ago

I'll settle for round-ish.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.41  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.16    7 months ago

People disagree.   One can either formulate a thoughtful rebuttal or engage in slimy tactics (an indication of an inability to engage in thoughtful debate).

If someone claims they have evidence of god then it is perfectly reasonable to ask what they mean by 'god' and to ask for the evidence.   If the evidence is presented, it is perfectly reasonable to be critical of that evidence if one provides the actual reasons substantiating the criticism.

Everyone has the right to be critical of a declared point.   That means everyone can deem a posit wrong and debate it.

That is how debate forums work.   One debates the shit out of the points (with thoughtful rebuttals) but does not make things personal.

 
 
 
Tacos!
1.1.42  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.41    7 months ago

You just replied to a comment I made to a different member that was on-topic, not personal, and had nothing to do with you personally beyond that members reference to you. Yet here you are with a 100% meta comment, talking about slimy tactics and making things personal. What the hell? Discuss the topic with me or piss off.

 
 
 
Freefaller
1.1.43  Freefaller  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.40    7 months ago

Lol that works

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.44  Sparty On  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.40    7 months ago

Well, most of us can at least agree that its not flat.   The Universe on the other hand .... may be.

Kooky eh?

 
 
 
cjcold
1.1.45  cjcold  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.9    7 months ago
You still wouldn't consider that proof of God.

Even were I to see valid proof of a supreme being, I would not worship it. 

Bowing down to anything/anybody is not in my nature.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.46  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @1.1.42    7 months ago

You mentioned me in the comment:

Tacos @1.1.16 ☞  In the meantime, if others say they are satisfied, who are you, or Gordy, or TiG - or anyone else - to say they are wrong?

You claimed that it is out of place for one person to posit that another person is wrong.    That is nonsense; especially in a forum such as NT.   Thus I rebutted your assertion:

TiG @1.1.41 ☞ People disagree.   One can either formulate a thoughtful rebuttal or engage in slimy tactics (an indication of an inability to engage in thoughtful debate).

If someone claims they have evidence of god then it is perfectly reasonable to ask what they mean by 'god' and to ask for the evidence.   If the evidence is presented, it is perfectly reasonable to be critical of that evidence if one provides the actual reasons substantiating the criticism.

Everyone has the right to be critical of a declared point.   That means everyone can deem a posit wrong and debate it.

That is how debate forums work.   One debates the shit out of the points (with thoughtful rebuttals) but does not make things personal.

The above is my rebuttal to the assertion you made which specifically named me.

 
 
 
gooseisgone
1.2  gooseisgone  replied to  Gordy327 @1    7 months ago
Still no proof or even evidence for any god/s. Not surprising really.

There is no evidence of how ANYTHING came to be. 

 
 
 
cjcold
1.2.1  cjcold  replied to  gooseisgone @1.2    7 months ago
There is no evidence of how ANYTHING came to be.

Exactly the point.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.2.2  TᵢG  replied to  gooseisgone @1.2    7 months ago

We have substantial evidence on how stars, planets, etc. form.    We have substantial evidence on how species form.     We even have evidence on how atoms and particles form.

We do not have evidence for what initiated the Big Bang.   Is that what you mean?

 
 
 
gooseisgone
1.2.3  gooseisgone  replied to  TᵢG @1.2.2    7 months ago
what initiated the Big Bang

It not what initiated the big bang, it's where did the substances that created the big bang come from?

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.2.4  TᵢG  replied to  gooseisgone @1.2.3    7 months ago

Nobody knows.

Is it possible that existence is eternal and that underlying all forms of existence there is a substance of existence that has always been?

Sure.   Seems possible.   But nobody knows for certain.

 
 
 
gooseisgone
1.2.5  gooseisgone  replied to  TᵢG @1.2.4    7 months ago
But nobody knows for certain.

Which is where a creator is just as viable. You want to make it about God vs intelligent design. Can the creator be existence.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.2.6  TᵢG  replied to  gooseisgone @1.2.5    7 months ago
Which is where a creator is just as viable.

Is it?   

  1. First Cause:  primordial substance of existence which interacts over time resulting in more complex (albeit transient) forms.   We see this all the time even at a magnificent level such as the formation of stars, planets and then entire galaxies.
  2. First Cause:  the most complex possible entity simply exists and creates everything.

You think it is more likely that the most complex possible entity simply exists rather than a primitive eternal substance that evolves into increasingly more complex forms over time??

You want to make it about God vs intelligent design. 

Where do you get this crap?   I have made no such argument.   

Can the creator be existence.

Yes.  Existence itself might be the 'creator'.   Not sentient.   In fact, that would be case 1 above.   If you want to go further, expand this so that a creator form emerges from existence and then goes off to create universes.

 
 
 
Gordy327
1.2.7  author  Gordy327  replied to  gooseisgone @1.2    7 months ago
There is no evidence of how ANYTHING came to be. 

That would include god/s too. 

it's where did the substances that created the big bang come from?

The honest answer is, no one knows.

Which is where a creator is just as viable. 

What created the creator? Or what came before the creator?

 
 
 
cjcold
1.2.8  cjcold  replied to  TᵢG @1.2.4    7 months ago

This universe is just a small offshoot of a timeline of a much larger universe.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.2.9  TᵢG  replied to  cjcold @1.2.8    7 months ago

Trying to take baby steps here cj.  jrSmiley_82_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2  JohnRussell    7 months ago
It boggles the mind that in today's technological and information era, there are still those who cling to silly superstitions like god/s as real or true or as an explanation for things. 

How does your explanation account for scientists and mathematicians that believe in God? 

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.1  author  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @2    7 months ago
How does your explanation account for scientists and mathematicians that believe in God? 

That's their own personal beliefs. They might believe for the same reasons anyone else does: emotional comfort, a sense of community or belonging, they were taught or indoctrinated to, ect.. 

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2  Sparty On  replied to  JohnRussell @2    7 months ago

It doesn't.

Asking for proof of the (by definition) unprovable.   The ultimate in unreasonable.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.1  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2    7 months ago
Asking for proof of the (by definition) unprovable.   The ultimate in unreasonable.

I realize proof is too high a standard (although, that would be nice). That's why I also said evidence. But it's not so much about being unproven. It's about proving (or empirically supported with evidence) what is claimed or believed.

 
 
 
Dig
2.2.2  Dig  replied to  Sparty On @2.2    7 months ago
Asking for proof of the (by definition) unprovable.   The ultimate in unreasonable.

If anything qualifies as the ultimate in unreasonable, it has to be professing wholehearted, unwavering belief in something for which the proof is (by definition) unprovable.

The reasonable position, on the other hand, would be to NOT claim absolute certainty about wholly anecdotal, supernatural god concepts that can only ever be imagined (making them 100% imaginary).

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.3  Sparty On  replied to  Dig @2.2.2    7 months ago

“Faith” is an unattainable concept for the faithless and yet the faithless will remain a significant minority for any foreseeable future.   No numbers “fallacy” justifications needed.

The concept of expecting proof for something that is by definition unprovable, is the only truly crazy thing in this conversation.    I know that’s all the faithless have to hang on to be it’s okay.    

We still love you.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.4  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.3    7 months ago
The concept of expecting proof for something that is by definition unprovable, is the only truly crazy thing in this conversation.

Who is expecting proof for the unprovable?    Gordy stated upfront in his article:

First is the obvious lack of any objective, empirical evidence or proof. 

Evidence is included in his statement.


It is not possible to prove there is no god.   It may also be impossible to prove there is a god.   (Who knows, just because it has not been done does not mean that proof is impossible.)

Thus the focus on evidence.    Thus far, there is no persuasive evidence (think of evidence as that which would pass muster within the scientific method) that any god actually exists.   And the more specific the definition of the god, the more evidence would be required.   For example, a god defined simply as 'creator of everything' is immediately evidenced (in part) by our own existence.   A claim of 'sentient creator of everything' in contrast would require evidence supporting the property of sentience.   When we get to the Christian god, for example, the claim is very specific, including factors such as:

  • omnipotence
  • omniscience
  • omnipresence
  • omnibenevolence
  • perfection
  • singular
  • eternal

And on top of these factors are stories of this god containing all sorts of details and apparent contradictions.   Providing evidence that the Christian god (God) is the unique grandest possible entity is quite a tall order.   In contrast, however, it does not take much to logically note contradictions which are evidence that God, as defined, is a contradiction and thus does not exist.   For example, an omniscient entity that learns or changes His mind.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.5  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.3    7 months ago
“Faith” is an unattainable concept for the faithless and yet the faithless will remain a significant minority for any foreseeable future.   No numbers “fallacy” justifications needed.

Faith is just a religious concept (within the context of god/s and/or religion). Even those without faith, such as atheists, understand the concept of faith. The "faithless" are simply not convinced that the object of faith exists or is real. But most are probably willing to reconsider if there was evidence presented. 

The concept of expecting proof for something that is by definition unprovable, is the only truly crazy thing in this conversation.    I know that’s all the faithless have to hang on to be it’s okay.   

Proof is nice, but also unrealistic. Especially where god/s are concerned. But simple empirical evidence will do too. As it stands, there is no such evidence for any god/s. Neither does any seem to be forthcoming. So the "faithless" remain unconvinced and any claims of certainty regarding the existence of god/s will rightfully garner challenges.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.6  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.5    7 months ago
Faith is just a religious concept

Well, i know this conversation is pointless with you but one last time ......

Every modern dictionary disagrees with you.   Nearly every definition of the word disagrees with you.   I know you think you can pick and choose words like "faith" to redefine and/or attempt to remove from society that tend to hurt your preferred narrative but you don't really get to do that.

You'll try, i know, but it changes nothing.

The definition of faith is what it is and was established long before you came along.   And will continue to be accepted as such long after you're gone.

Such is the reality in this world where the sky is blue.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.7  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.6    7 months ago
Every modern dictionary disagrees with you.   Nearly every definition of the word disagrees with you.

Not at all. Faith is defined (in the context of this discussion pertaining to god/s) as a belief or trust in a god and/or religious doctrines. In that respect, it is a religious concept.

   I know you think you can pick and choose words like "faith" to redefine and/or attempt to remove from society that tend to hurt your preferred narrative but you don't really get to do that.

I'm doing no such thing. I can include the Webster Dictionary to support my previous statement.

The definition of faith is what it is and was established long before you came along.   And will continue to be accepted as such long after you're gone.

See first statement. 

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.8  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.7    7 months ago
Not at all. Faith is defined (in the context of this discussion pertaining to god/s) as a belief or trust in a god and/or religious doctrines. In that respect, it is a religious concept.

You conveniently left out the cogent part of the definition in the case i was making:

b(1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof

Very disingenuous of you since we've had this discussion multiple times before but i'm sure that omission was just an error on your part right?

I'm doing no such thing. I can include the Webster Dictionary to support my previous statement.

Really?   See first response above to support my statement and refute yours.

See first statement.

See first statement above.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.9  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.8    7 months ago
You conveniently left out the cogent part of the definition in the case i was making:

Not at all. If you want to nitpick, I can include a Webster link. 

b(1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof 

And how does that disagree with the idea of faith being a religious concept? That seems to support my position.

Really?   See first response above to support my statement and refute yours.

And see mine! You haven't offered anything which refutes what I said. If anything, you made my case for me. 

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.10  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.9    7 months ago
Not at all. If you want to nitpick, I can include a Webster link.

I'm not nitpicking and you don't need to add a link.   I'm not the one disagreeing with a definition of "faith."   You are.   See below.

And how does that disagree with the idea of faith being a religious concept? That seems to support my position.

Really?   Do you see "religion" mentioned anywhere in that description?   Perhaps you can help me out because i don't.

You haven't offered anything which refutes what I said. If anything, you made my case for me.

That's because you refuse to accept an accepted definition of "faith" at face value.  

Denial is not logical.

 

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.11  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.10    7 months ago
I'm not the one disagreeing with a definition of "faith."   You are.   See below.

No, I'm not. I'm referring to faith within the context of religious concepts like god/s. 

Really?   Do you see "religion" mentioned anywhere in that description?   Perhaps you can help me out because i don't.

Tell me you're not trying to be obtuse about this. Very well, here: Merriam-Webster

Definition of faith 
1a
: allegiance to duty or a person : loyalty 
b
(1)
: fidelity to one's promises
(2)
: sincerity of intentions 
acted in good faith
2
a
(1)
: belief and trust in and loyalty to God
(2)
: belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion
b
(1)
: firm belief in something for which there is no proof 
(2)
: complete trust
3
: something that is believed especially with strong conviction 
especially : a system of religious beliefs  

Here's another definition source. Want more? Here you go. Let me know when you want to stop playing games!

That's because you refuse to accept an accepted definition of "faith" at face value.  

I just provided you with the definition.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.12  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.11    7 months ago

Seems to me that when discussing religious belief (and I think an article on gods might just qualify as such), the context determines the usage of 'faith'.   In a religious context, faith is defined as:

Strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

rather than

Complete trust or confidence in someone or something.

Hard to imagine why this is not obvious.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.13  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.11    7 months ago

And i'm referring to the definition i've shared.   All you have "proved" is the definition i've shared for faith is valid.   Just like i said.

The definition you seem intent on completely discounting.   I on the other hand have not discounted the definition you've shared.   Both are universally accepted definitions of "faith."   There's the difference.   I'm not trying to change the definition of anything.   You are by omission that is convenient to the narrative you like to push here.

Denial remains illogical.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.14  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.13    7 months ago

Do you accept the reality of context determining which of several usages of a word is intended?

If the context is religious, which usage of ‘faith’ would naturally apply?

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.15  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.14    7 months ago

Not interested in your word games TiG

My point has been made clearly and concisely numerous times here and in past discussions on this topic.   Like usual you won't think so and i really don't care what you think so save yourself the bandwidth and don't bother.

So here you go, another last word, lecturing insult opportunity for you ............

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.16  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.15    7 months ago

Yet again, I ask a simple question and get instead personal meta.

My comment was devoid of anything negative, just a simple observation and a probative question.  

Your response was insulting, accusatory and snarky.   Basically over-the-top negative.   You can pretend that I am the trouble maker here but your comments betray your pretense.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.17  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.13    7 months ago

I have provided the definition of faith, cited several sources for it, specified the context in which it's used, and even emphasized where religion is mentioned in the definition, which you seemed to infer wasn't there or otherwise irrelevant. And instead of owning up to it, you continue to play these games, ignore the context of the usage of the word as i specified with respect to the article/discission, and remain obtuse about it. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.18  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.17    7 months ago

Lots of projection going around lately, eh?

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.19  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.12    7 months ago

I agree completely. It is rather obvious, is it not?

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.20  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.17    7 months ago
I have provided the definition of faith, cited several sources for it, specified the context in which it's used,I have provided the definition of faith, cited several sources for it, specified the context in which it's used, and even emphasized where religion is mentioned in the definition,

As have i, repeatedly.   Even pointing out where religion isn't mentioned in the accepted definition i usedand you continue to ignore the context of that definition.

which you seemed to infer wasn't there or otherwise irrelevant.

I've done no such thing.   I've accepted the definition you've provided several times as ONE accepted definition of faith.   You're the one not acknowledging the accepted definition i've referred to.   Even after quoting it once yourself.   I find that denial very illogical.

And instead of owning up to it, you continue to play these games, ignore the context of the usage of the word as i specified with respect to the article/discission, and remain obtuse about it.

There's the attack on intellect that doesn't apply in the least.   Took you longer than usual to get there Gordy but like usual you got there.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.21  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.19    7 months ago

Personally i find the ego stroking coming from the mutual admiration club here to be quite obnoxious myself.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.22  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.19    7 months ago

Look  jrSmiley_115_smiley_image.png   at what followed your comment.   Arguing for the sake of argument?   Projection, reframing, etc.   Snark for the sake of snark?

It is rare to engage someone nowadays and not be faced with cliche tactics in place of a thoughtful rebuttal.  

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.23  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.22    7 months ago

Yes, I've noticed..

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.24  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.20    7 months ago
Even pointing out where religion isn't mentioned in the accepted definition i usedand you continue to ignore the context of that definition.

I cited 3 sources for the definition and ALL of them use religion within the definition. In an article about god/s, how else do you think "faith" is applied?

Here's what I initially said: "Faith is just a religious concept (within the context of god/s and/or religion).

You said the dictionary disagrees with me: "Every modern dictionary disagrees with you.  Nearly every definition of the word disagrees with you."

So I cited 3 dictionaries, while you didn't cite any source. All my cited sources include faith within the established definition/s. Where is the disagreement? Your statement is outright and demonstrably false! Instead of owning up to that, you continue to argue and play these games. It's becoming quite tiresome.

 I've accepted the definition you've provided several times as ONE accepted definition of faith.   You're the one not acknowledging the accepted definition i've referred to.   Even after quoting it once yourself.   I find that denial very illogical.

The definition of faith as it pertains to the context of the discussion, as I already specified. It seems you keep trying to deny that aspect.

There's the attack on intellect that doesn't apply in the least.   Took you longer than usual to get there Gordy but like usual you got there.

No attack. But simply an assessment of your series of posts surrounding the usage and meaning of a word. And apparently, I'm not the only one who noticed. 

Personally i find the ego stroking coming from the mutual admiration club here to be quite obnoxious myself.

Spare us the snark. Address the topic.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.25  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.24    7 months ago

Any perceived "snark" or anything else you two are stroking each other on is completely fabricated in your heads.

I suggest you two just keep doing that without me as i'm not interested in that in the least.    That way, you'll get the agreement you are looking for every time and you'll both be much happier.

Enjoy!

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.26  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.25    7 months ago
Any perceived "snark" or anything else you two are stroking each other on is completely fabricated in your heads.

When you have nothing of value to offer, you make things personal. 

I suggest you two just keep doing that without me as i'm not interested in that in the least.    That way, you'll get the agreement you are looking for every time and you'll both be much happier.

You had a chance to address the topic and posts. Instead, you chose to play games and get personal. Yeah, we're not interested in that. Goodbye!

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.27  Sparty On  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.26    7 months ago
When you have nothing of value to offer, you make things personal.

I've offered plenty.   That you don't accept what i've offered is your problem not mine.   Then you fabricate personal attacks that aren't there.   If i choose to "attack" you i promise you, you will know it.   That hasn't happened yet no matter how hard you try to make it so.    No safe spaces here Gordy.

You had a chance to address the topic and posts. Instead, you chose to play games and get personal.

Lol .... i'm playing games?   Hilarious!

Yeah, we're not interested in that. Goodbye!

About time you stopped playing whatever game it is you've been playing here.

Buh bye and you have a nice day now ya hear!

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.28  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.20    7 months ago
I've done no such thing.   I've accepted the definition you've provided several times as ONE accepted definition of faith.   You're the one not acknowledging the accepted definition i've referred to.   Even after quoting it once yourself.   I find that denial very illogical.

Given English words have multiples usages (distinct meanings) it is necessary in the process of communication to discern which of the usages applies.    Typically, the disambiguation is accomplished with context.

' Faith ' has several usages that you and Gordy have both acknowledged ( Oxford ):

1  Complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
Strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

When religion is the topic, and someone uses the word faith, which of the above usages would naturally apply based on the context?

Number 2, right?   Obviously.   Common knowledge.   Not really debatable (if one is being serious).

So when Gordy wrote:

Gordy @ 2.2.5 Faith is just a religious concept (within the context of god/s and/or religion).

One is challenged to find a clearer statement.   Gordy literally named the context in his above opening statement of this ' controversy ' noting that in a religious context, the word 'faith' is a religious concept.

It is amazing that anyone would disagree with this much less engage in a series of petty obfuscation, etc. over something so obvious.   To what end?   Arguing for the sake of arguing??  What is it that you wish to accomplish here?   You will not be able to change the dictionary usages for ' faith ' and it is pointless to claim that the context is not religious since Gordy explicitly named the context upfront.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.29  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.28    7 months ago
You will not be able to change the dictionary usages for ' faith ' and it is pointless to claim that the context is not religious since Gordy explicitly named the context upfront.

Lol, i see.   So you and Gordy have "decided" the religious definition of faith is the only one that applies here.   Good for you but sorry, you two aren't the last arbiters of definitions and i clearly disagreed across the board using this directly from my Merriam Webster:

b(1)
: firm belief in something for which there is no proof 

A definition that speaks directly to the premise of this article, your article, contemplating the existence of God(s) in that it describes a belief in something "God(s)" for which there is no proof.   Not accepting that definition in this case is just ...... puzzling and reeks of rampant denial and disingenuousness.

And for the last time.   I have not refused the religious definition of faith but i've clearly been using the other definition as noted above from the start of this conversation.   Attempting to exclude either definition it is just not rational imo.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.30  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.29    7 months ago
So you and Gordy have "decided" the religious definition of faith is the only one that applies here.   Good for you but sorry, you two aren't the last arbiters of definitions and i clearly disagreed across the board using this directly from my Merriam Webster:

How else do you think the definition of faith applies to an article about god/s? Your disagreement is noted, but also misplaced as I already cited 3 sources of the definition and even emphasized where the definition is applied, which you claimed wasn't there. You're flat out wrong on this one!

Not accepting that definition in this case is just ...... puzzling and reeks of rampant denial and disingenuousness.

Where did you get the idea that definition wasn't accepted? I even spoke in some comments regarding the irrationality of belief without proof. That certainly doesn't refute anything I said. I even said that aspect makes faith a religious concept, which you initially disagreed with. You're really grasping at straws now.

And for the last time.   I have not refused the religious definition of faith but i've clearly been using the other definition as noted above from the start of this conversation. 

You've only ignored the context in which it is used. So again, how else do you think the definition of faith applies to an article about god/s?

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.31  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.29    7 months ago
So you and Gordy have "decided" the religious definition of faith is the only one that applies here. 

No.  It is as though you are working overtime to not understand something basic.  I showed with a quote that Gordy explicitly named the context of his opening statement:  

Gordy @ 2.2.5 Faith is just a religious concept (within the context of god/s and/or religion).

Clearly Gordy has identified what he meant by 'faith'.   He identified the dictionary usage that he is employing.   Being clear causes a petty debate?

firm belief in something for which there is no proof 

Is a firm belief in a god for which there is no proof religious or not?    In an article on gods, would you naturally pick the religious usage of faith or a secular usage?   I am running out of words to express the obvious.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.2.32  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.31    7 months ago

And i am running out of any desire to continue this discussion if you can call it that.   Which i really don't  

You two have your opinion and i have mine and never the twain shall they meet.    It's pointless but you did get one last sanctimonious intellectual dig in there so you got that going for you.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.2.33  author  Gordy327  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.32    7 months ago
And i am running out of any desire to continue this discussion if you can call it that.  

It seems you're not so much discussing as you are simply arguing.

You two have your opinion and i have mine and never the twain shall they meet.   

No, we've provided verifiable facts and explained them repeatedly to you. And yet, you continue to argue over something so basic, while ignoring follow up questions posed to you.

It's pointless but you did get one last sanctimonious intellectual dig in there so you got that going for you.

Emotional rhetoric adds no value.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.34  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @2.2.32    7 months ago

Good!   I have been making the case that your complaints are both petty and demonstrably wrong.   Ceasing this nonsense is the right move.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @2    7 months ago
How does your explanation account for scientists and mathematicians that believe in God? 

Scientists (and mathematicians, et. al.) are still human beings who might find comfort in beliefs that are yet to be substantiated with evidence.    

Given there is no proof (scientific or otherwise) that there is no sentient creator, there really is nothing logical or factual preventing a scientist (for example) from believing that there might be a sentient creator.

The key, however, is that the belief is not based on facts and logic.   People kid ourselves all the time;  often to bring comfort.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.3.1  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @2.3    7 months ago

It's not illogical to believe in God. 

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
2.3.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @2.3    7 months ago

You may not believe this, but I believe in a Higher Power. Call it God if you want.

However, I know that my belief is a "belief". There is absolutely no logic to it at all. It's pure emotion. That's why it's called "faith". Faith doesn't need to be proven. It it were proven, it wouldn't be faith

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.3  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.1    7 months ago

Depends on what you mean by 'illogical'.

If you mean:   " not sensible or thought out in a logical way "  then I agree.   People can clearly reason their way into a belief.   They can start with a supposition (e.g. the Earth is flat) and gather facts that support the supposition.  They can then use reason to logically connect their accepted facts to conclude that indeed the Earth is flat.

I hold that flat Earth beliefs, as an example, are not based on facts and logic because they kid themselves by selecting only ' advantageous ' facts and apply logical fallacies to support their beliefs.   

Do you disagree?

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.4  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @2.3.2    7 months ago
However, I know that my belief is a "belief". There is absolutely no logic to it at all. It's pure emotion.

Agnostic deism, what you just described, has been around for centuries.   I would not be surprised if a substantial number of claimed theists are in actuality agnostic deists.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.5  author  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.1    7 months ago

But it is irrational. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.3.6  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @2.3.3    7 months ago

Flat earth is illogical because we have proof it is false. 

Belief in God can be logical because there is no proof that God does not exist, plus belief in a creator can be logical. 

It got here somehow. Something cannot come from nothing. Ergo this existence comes from a supernatural source. 

You may believe those statements are wrong, and there is no supernatural, but they are not illogical. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.7  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.6    7 months ago
Flat earth is illogical because we have proof it is false. 

As usual, you focus on the example instead of recognizing the point illustrated by the example.   The example illustrated that human beings often apply confirmation bias and fallacious thinking.

Belief in God can be logical because there is no proof that God does not exist, plus belief in a creator can be logical. 

Belief in a sentient creator is perfectly rational if the believer recognizes that the belief is speculative.    

Ergo this existence comes from a supernatural source. 

Supernatural simply means we cannot (yet) explain it: " attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature ."      Science has routinely explained supernatural phenomena;  once explained the supernatural then become natural.    'Supernatural' is a religious weasel word.   It simply means: 'not yet explained by our understanding of reality'.

It got here somehow. Something cannot come from nothing.

I agree, by definition of the word 'nothing' it is impossible for something to emerge from nothing.   That means, logically, that there is an eternal first cause.   That first cause might be the quintessential substance of existence — that which underlies all that exists.   Following suit, all that exists is a form of this substance.   If there is a sentient creator, it logically would be an emergent property of existence rather than the first cause.   It makes more sense that the first cause is formless and that forms result over interactions rather than the first cause being the most complex form possible.

Ergo, it is more reasonable that the universe is an emergent property of existence rather than being the product of a sentient creator.   Skip the middle man (the sentient creator).

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.3.8  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @2.3.7    7 months ago

You have a theory, which is your opinion. 

it is more reasonable that the universe is an emergent property of existence rather than being the product of a sentient creator. 

I don't define supernatural as natural things or events that have not yet been explained. 

Super- natural , to me, is something that exists or originates outside this nature. It is unexplained because we have no means to investigate supernatural causes or forces. We can investigate nature, we cannot investigate events that are caused outside of this nature. 

The supernatural is taken on faith as well. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.9  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.8    7 months ago
You have a theory, which is your opinion.

I have not proposed a theory.

Super- natural , to me, is something that exists or originates outside this nature. It is unexplained because we have no means to investigate supernatural causes or forces. We can investigate nature, we cannot investigate events that are caused outside of this nature. 

If we have no means (implicitly ever) to investigate the supernatural then how do you know anything is supernatural?   (You answer my question below.)

The supernatural is taken on faith as well. 

As you define it, the supernatural is entirely speculation.  Why even bother speaking about something that is by your definition 100% human imagination?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.3.10  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @2.3.9    7 months ago

Your theory that 

it is more reasonable that the universe is an emergent property of existence rather than being the product of a sentient creator.

is speculation. Every conclusion drawn about things that are not known is speculation. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.11  author  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.6    7 months ago
It got here somehow. Something cannot come from nothing. Ergo this existence comes from a supernatural source. 

An argument from ignorance, which demonstrates a point made in the article: we don't know something so we automatically defer to god/s as an explanation. 

You may believe those statements are wrong, and there is no supernatural, but they are not illogical. 

Invoking supernatural explanations when there is no evidence for it is illogical.

The supernatural is taken on faith as well. 

Which makes it an irrational position.

Super- natural , to me, is something that exists or originates outside this nature.

If it is outside of nature, then it cannot, by definition, have any effect or interaction with nature. Otherwise, it is no longer outside nature.

it is more reasonable that the universe is an emergent property of existence rather than being the product of a sentient creator.

We know the universe exists. Therefore, existence has always existed.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.12  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @2.3.7    7 months ago
As usual, you focus on the example instead of recognizing the point illustrated by the example. 

You're dismissing his point without good cause. John didn't just focus on the example. There was more to his comment than that. He pointed out a critical difference. His point is a fair and relevant one.

The example illustrated that human beings often apply confirmation bias and fallacious thinking.

Yes, but they don't usually do so in the face of clear evidence that disproves their beliefs.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.13  Tacos!  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.8    7 months ago
Super- natural , to me, is something that exists or originates outside this nature.

I think that is a more useful and accurate definition.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.14  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.10    7 months ago
Your theory that 

it is more reasonable that the universe is an emergent property of existence rather than being the product of a sentient creator.

is speculation.

I presented logic based on modern knowledge.   In a word, I am arguing parsimony.    On one hand we have the most complex entity simply existing (magically) as the first cause.   On the other hand we have the substance of existence existing.   We know that existence 'is' so there is no speculation.   We know that forms of existence reduce to lower forms.   Currently we have reduced existence down to particle physics and we have every reason to expect that the reduction continues.   Well, when the reduction hits the bottom, we have the quintessential substance of existence.

Every conclusion drawn about things that are not known is speculation. 

You speculate that there is a supernatural that exists that we cannot ever possible observe.   That is 100% speculation.

What I posited is based on facts:

  1.  existence 'is';  existence is demonstrably true
  2.  existence itself did not come from 'nothing' 
  3.  forms of existence reduce to lower forms
  4.  there must be a first cause;  something must initiate the causal chain

Based on these facts, we consider possibilities regarding the first cause:

  1.  The first cause is the quintessential substance of existence itself which ...
    1.  ... interacts to produce forms (things).   One of which might be our universe.
    2.  ... forms the most complex possible sentient entity that in turn creates things such as our universe 
  2.  The first cause is the most complex possible sentient entity that in turn creates things such as our universe.

We have evidence of matter and energy in our universe interacting to produce more complex forms.

We have zero evidence of a complex sentient creator.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.15  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.12    7 months ago
There was more to his comment than that. He pointed out a critical difference. His point is a fair and relevant one.

And I replied to that part.   Did you read my reply?

Yes, but they don't usually do so in the face of clear evidence that disproves their beliefs.

I disagree.   How many times have you read individuals claim that the Earth is flat, that evolution is a worldwide conspiracy by godless scientists, that the Earth is 6,000 years old and human beings coexisted with dinosaurs?

People ignore clear evidence all the time.


You did not reply to the balance of my reply to John.   This is where I directly addressed his points.   

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.16  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @2.3.15    7 months ago
People ignore clear evidence all the time.

I said they usually don't. I didn't say "never" or "all the time." You can always find an exception to a general rule, but how does doing that contribute to the conversation? You accuse me of not reading a reply, but you have now ignored key details in comments from both me and John.

See, this is what I'm talking about. There's no dialectic here. No truth-seeking. Just the need to win an argument. That's all that ever happens in these "conversations" about God. Here, you wanted to do it by equating a belief in God with flat-Earthism. John showed you quickly and easily why that comparison didn't work but you weren't open to that criticism.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
2.3.17  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.1    7 months ago
It's not illogical to believe in God. 

I can't stand the taste of coconut. I cannot prove that coconut flavor is empirically disgusting. That's my own personal taste and choice. Is it illogical? Some might think so, and they've tried to get me to try German Chocolate cake, macaroons and Almond Joy candy bars trying to convince me otherwise, but to me they all taste gross.

So believe if you want to believe in a God or gods. Go ahead, that's your own personal preference. But just like my friends and family stopped trying to convince me of the wonders of coconut, until there is empirical evidence of any deity all you can do is express how much you love believing but accept that others might not like or accept your preference as "delicious" or "fact based".

The reason that there are so many different faiths is because there is no empirical evidence any of them are actually accurate. If there was evidence, then all other religious without proof would eventually disappear. But there isn't, so we have thousands of faiths that have gone extinct and thousands more that took their place. Even within one religion there often thousands of different interpretations which is what lead to the over 2,000 different Christian denominations.

So without actual evidence, you can practice your faith and set an example for how to live and by that example maybe others will say "Hey, that guy is doing really well, he must be doing something right, perhaps it's his faith. Maybe I'll look into that". But trying to go around pompously telling people "Truth here! Come and get it! The only truth is right here and I have it and the billions of others who don't share my faith are just stupid morons for not believing the way I do!" while at the same time having exactly the same evidence of truth that every other religion does, aka "none", then expect to get your proclamations snidely thrown back in your face regularly.

Just because you followed a trail laid down by others over the last 3,000 years that led you to your current beliefs, doesn't mean the trail is actual evidence of anything supernatural. The trail consists of unproven and essentially unprovable claims made mostly by people who lived thousands of years ago and their accounts are no different than any supposed alien abductee of today in that they have no evidence to back up their claims.

So believe all you want, practice your faith to your hearts content, just don't claim evidence unless you actually have some.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.18  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.16    7 months ago
I said they usually don't. I didn't say "never" or "all the time."

I did not claim that you said or even implied that people never hold beliefs in the face of clear evidence that disproves their beliefs.    My response was that people ignore clear evidence all the time.   That means that it is common for people to hold beliefs in spite of the evidence.

I am not and was not talking in extremes;  that is absurd.   Why presume absurdity instead of just taking what I wrote?

You accuse me of not reading a reply, but you have now ignored key details in comments from both me and John.

Are you trying to find a way to make this personal?   Just stick with what I write.

See, this is what I'm talking about. There's no dialectic here.

You are the one messing up the discourse.   Maybe you should read what you have been writing.  I am making arguments and rebuttals.   You, in contrast, are trying to find ways to interpret my words in unlikely ways and make this personal.   Now you claim 'see' when the lack of dialectic is directly a result of the approach you are taking .

Here, you wanted to do it by equating a belief in God with flat-Earthism.

Another example of spinning my words.   I did not equate the two, I used flat-Earth as an example of believing against the evidence.

John showed you quickly and easily why that comparison didn't work but you weren't open to that criticism.

Because I did not equate the two.   See above.  jrSmiley_115_smiley_image.png    And read again my explanation to John:

TiG @ 2.3.7 The example illustrated that human beings often apply confirmation bias and fallacious thinking .

This comment from you is a perfect example of how to derail intellectual discourse into personal meta.    An then, ironically, you accuse me of what you are doing.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.19  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @2.3.18    7 months ago
Are you trying to find a way to make this personal?   Just stick with what I write.

And here we go. Now you're going to start accusing me of making it personal. You do this a lot, TiG. And not just with me. All I have done is discuss the topic and the arguments people make. No one went after you personally. You do this so much that it really looks like a kind of red herring.

This comment from you is a perfect example of how to derail intellectual discourse into personal meta.

Self-flattery. Just because you post ideas on the internet, that doesn't mean you are engaging in intellectual discourse. These God seeds are typically flawed six ways from Sunday and this one is no exception so far.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.20  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.19    7 months ago

And here you are yet again with the personal derails.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.3.21  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @2.3.11    7 months ago

Sorry, not impressed.  Belief in God cannot be "illogical" since you cannot prove that God does not exist. Belief in God might be ill founded, or wrong, but it is not illogical. 

-

If something from outside this nature could effect this nature, that would likely be, well, a Supreme Being. 

You don't know there are no super-natural agencies, you just assume that is the case. 

I don't mind atheists, they really seem to enjoy this stuff. 

But atheists have no more claim to the "default" position than believers do. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.22  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.21    7 months ago
Belief in God cannot be "illogical" since you cannot prove that God does not exist.

Depends on how you define 'God'.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.23  author  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.21    7 months ago
Sorry, not impressed. 

I wasn't trying to impress you.

Belief in God cannot be "illogical" since you cannot prove that God does not exist. Belief in God might be ill founded, or wrong, but it is not illogical. 

If not illogical, then certainly irrational.

If something from outside this nature could effect this nature, that would likely be, well, a Supreme Being. 

Pure conjecture. For all you kow, it could be some super advanced interdimensional species (a la Star Trek). 

You don't know there are no super-natural agencies, you just assume that is the case.

A safe assumption, since there is no evidence for anything supernatural. 

But atheists have no more claim to the "default" position than believers do. 

Atheists are generally not making affirmative claims about god/s or the supernatural.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.3.24  Sparty On  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.19    7 months ago
You do this a lot, TiG. And not just with me.

Yep BTDT .... that is a common tactic on this topic for some here.

 
 
 
katrix
2.3.25  katrix  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.21    7 months ago
Belief in God cannot be "illogical" since you cannot prove that God does not exist

So by your argument, it's not illogical for me to believe in flying red-spotted hippos. Or anything at all, for that matter.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.3.26  JohnRussell  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @2.3.17    7 months ago

You dont know me then. I dont claim there is evidence of God. All I know is something cannot come from nothing and this existence was either created from outside it or it is eternal. The concept of eternal existence is in itself supernatural, in my opinion. 

 
 
 
gooseisgone
2.3.27  gooseisgone  replied to  JohnRussell @2.3.1    7 months ago
It's not illogical to believe in God

What logic can you provide as to how everything came to be?

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.3.28  Sparty On  replied to  katrix @2.3.25    7 months ago
it's not illogical for me to believe in flying red-spotted hippos

I don't know.   Is there a big following for believing in airborne red spotted hippos for the last few thousand years or is it just you?

 
 
 
katrix
2.3.29  katrix  replied to  Sparty On @2.3.28    7 months ago

The number of people who believe something doesn't matter, or how long they've believed it. 

 
 
 
katrix
2.3.30  katrix  replied to  Sparty On @2.3.28    7 months ago

Was there a huge following and a long timeframe for Jesus back in the day?

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.31  Tacos!  replied to  katrix @2.3.29    7 months ago
The number of people who believe something doesn't matter, or how long they've believed it.

It matters a little, or people wouldn't cite agreement on things to bolster their credibility. For example, 95% of climate scientists agree that people are changing the climate . . . or 17 security agencies say Trump was working with the Russians . . . or X number of women say they were attacked by Judge Kavanaugh, Harvey Weinstein, or Bill Cosby.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.32  Tacos!  replied to  katrix @2.3.30    7 months ago
Was there a huge following and a long timeframe for Jesus back in the day?

Apparently, yeah. The gospels speak of thousands of people following him around. Pauls letters to other Christians are addressed to whole communities of believers scattered about the Mediterranean. Roman and Hebrew writers wrote about how annoying they found the Christians to be. The Emperor set about persecuting them. And that persecution continued for almost three centuries even as the number of believers grew.

And all of that began either during Jesus's lifetime or within the first few decades after his death and has endured for 2,000 years. 

 
 
 
cjcold
2.3.33  cjcold  replied to  katrix @2.3.30    7 months ago

The power mongers of the time invented a Messiah and a means of control and profit over the foolish and gullible. The religion scam continues to this day. 

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.3.34  Sparty On  replied to  katrix @2.3.29    7 months ago

Sure, you are entitled to that opinion.

Opinions do vary widely.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.3.35  Sparty On  replied to  katrix @2.3.30    7 months ago

Back in the day?  

Do you mean a couple thousand years ago or ..... a couple hundred years ago or ..... a couple decades ago?   Help me out a little with your "back in the day" time reference.

 
 
 
katrix
2.3.36  katrix  replied to  Sparty On @2.3.35    7 months ago

When it all started, a couple thousand years ago. It was just a small cult originally.

 
 
 
Sparty On
2.3.37  Sparty On  replied to  katrix @2.3.36    7 months ago

Okay, so back in the day means a couple thousand years to you.   Got it.

To me it means a few decades ago.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.38  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.31    7 months ago

Many people agreeing or a "mob mentality" regarding an issue doesn't lend credibility. That just makes it popular. Credibility is earned (or lost) by the evidence presented to support (or refute) an issue or notion.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.39  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @2.3.38    7 months ago

You can think that, but you're wrong. There are many circumstances where that limited philosophy doesn't hold up. I listed a few above.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.40  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.39    7 months ago
You can think that, but you're wrong. There are many circumstances where that limited philosophy doesn't hold up. I listed a few above.

So actual evidence doesn't lend credibility but popularity does? Are you serious? 

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.41  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @2.3.40    7 months ago
So actual evidence doesn't lend credibility but popularity does? Are you serious?

When that popularity is based on personal experience or observation, absolutely. However, I did not say anything about "actual evidence" not lending credibility. For one thing, I happen to think testimony of personal experience and observation is "actual evidence."

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.42  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.41    7 months ago
When that popularity is based on personal experience or observation, absolutely.

Observation is better than experience. Experiences can be quite subjective. Repeated or collaborative observations is better still, as that establishes credibility and reliability.

However, I did not say anything about "actual evidence" not lending credibility. For one thing, I happen to think testimony of personal experience and observation is "actual evidence."

As I said, experience is subjective and anecdotal. People can be "experience" the same event, but relate different accounts of it. Observation is better if there is something to collaborate what is observed. But again, someone relaying an experience or personal observation still amounts to "because I said so." If that's all it takes to satisfy you, then you have the bar set quite low. 

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.3.43  Tacos!  replied to  Gordy327 @2.3.42    7 months ago
But again, someone relaying an experience or personal observation still amounts to "because I said so."

There is nothing wrong with listening to people and what they have to say. It can be the beginning of investigation or the end. Every crime that is reported starts with someone who has a story. It's not enough to convict, but it is enough to look further.

One person complaining about Bill Cosby might raise an eyebrow or elicit a laugh. 10, 20, or 30 people with similar stories results in a conviction.

If that's all it takes to satisfy you, then you have the bar set quite low. 

You're dipping into straw man territory. I never said that that was all it takes to satisfy me. No single individual piece of evidence is likely to satisfy me. However, a single person's experience or testimony can be part of a body of evidence that is compelling in its totality. As we see in the Cosby reference.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.3.44  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.41    7 months ago
I happen to think testimony of personal experience and observation is "actual evidence."

It is evidence, but a very weak form.    There are people today who testify that they have been abducted by aliens, have had direct dialogues with Jesus, etc.    The ability of the mind to be deceived is well studied.   Eyewitnesses, for example, can easily by manipulated into seeing something that in actuality they did not see.   Then we can add in how people routinely kid themselves.

The legal system relies on eyewitness testimony because it typically is working with low evidence.   But it is not considered great evidence .

And repeated claims of an original eyewitness will, given time and translation, evolve into pretty much anything.

So when speaking of evidence for existence of the grandest possible entity (God), the evidence would of course be spectacular.   The greater the claim, the higher the quality of evidence required to substantiate the claim.   I can claim that I am now on a Keto diet; the level of evidence for that would probably be just my word.   Low claim, low level of evidence.   If, on the other hand, I claimed to be a direct descendant of Abraham Lincoln (whose lineage is known to be dead) then the level of evidence is considerably higher.   A claim that the grandest possible entity exists would need to be substantially better evidenced.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.3.45  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @2.3.43    7 months ago
There is nothing wrong with listening to people and what they have to say. It can be the beginning of investigation or the end.

I never said there was anything wrong with listening. But whatever anyone says should be taken with a grain of salt, especially if they purport something as factual or true. There should be something objective to back up any statement or claim.

Every crime that is reported starts with someone who has a story. It's not enough to convict, but it is enough to look further.

But it usually takes something solid and objective to convict, or exonerate.

One person complaining about Bill Cosby might raise an eyebrow or elicit a laugh. 10, 20, or 30 people with similar stories results in a conviction.

And you don't see the intrinsic problem with that? Basically, anyone can say anything, fabricate something, or let personal opinion, emotion, or bias get in the way. But whether you have 30 people or 300, all it takes is ONE piece of objective, empirical evidence to exonerate. On the flipside, objective, empirical evidence can also result in a conviction. That's how much stronger objetive, empirical evidence is over subjective claims or "experiences."

I never said that that was all it takes to satisfy me. No single individual piece of evidence is likely to satisfy me. 

You do seem to give particular credence to subjective forms of evidence.

 However, a single person's experience or testimony can be part of a body of evidence that is compelling in its totality. 

And that entire body of subjective evidence can be refuted, or collaborated, by 1 piece of objective, empirical evidence.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.4  Tacos!  replied to  JohnRussell @2    7 months ago
How does your explanation account for scientists and mathematicians that believe in God?

It doesn't. And it won't. You'll see.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.1  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.4    7 months ago
TiG @2.3 ☞ Scientists (and mathematicians, et. al.) are still human beings who might find comfort in beliefs that are yet to be substantiated with evidence.    

Given there is no proof (scientific or otherwise) that there is no sentient creator, there really is nothing logical or factual preventing a scientist (for example) from believing that there might be a sentient creator.

The key, however, is that the belief is not based on facts and logic.   People kid ourselves all the time;  often to bring comfort.

There you go.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.4.2  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @2.4.1    7 months ago

You just invented your own notions of other people's thought processes and beliefs. You also make your own assumption about God and assume all of your guesses/beliefs to be true. Then you'll turn around and declare that anyone who disagrees with you is irrational.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.3  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.4.2    7 months ago

And yet again, nothing but unsubstantiated personal allegations and meta.   

Got anything to say about the debate or should I expect nothing but derails and derogatory personal allegations?

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.4.4  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @2.4.3    7 months ago
And yet again, nothing but unsubstantiated personal allegations and meta.

That's simply not true. I gave my analysis on the content of your comment. Rather than answer, you are going to claim your are being attacked. It's ridiculous.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.5  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.4.4    7 months ago

Never stops, eh?   What is this now, the 6th comment from you in a row that is all meta?   I am asking you to actually engage on the topic and you simply return with personal meta on each thread.

 
 
 
Tacos!
2.4.6  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @2.4.5    7 months ago

No, every time I discuss the topic and point out a flaw in your argument, you accuse me of making it personal. You are the only one derailing the conversation with your whining about personal attacks. If you really think I’m out of line, then by all means flag the comment. Otherwise, get back to the topic.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.7  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @2.4.6    7 months ago

Still, pure meta.

 
 
 
Gordy327
2.4.8  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @2.4.2    7 months ago
You also make your own assumption about God and assume all of your guesses/beliefs to be true.

Isn't that what most people do regarding god? Isn't that was religion itself does, make assumptions about god/s? Certainly no one or no religion can actually know or fully understand almighty deities.

Then you'll turn around and declare that anyone who disagrees with you is irrational.

It's not disagreeing that's irrational (although, disagreeing with TiG certainly is jrSmiley_9_smiley_image.gif ). But believing in something, especially as fact or truth, when there is no evidence, is irrational.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
2.4.9  Trout Giggles  replied to  Gordy327 @2.4.8    7 months ago
Isn't that was religion itself does, make assumptions about god/s?

Of course it does! Just look at religious iconography! It's obvious that the artists imbued human characteristics onto their icons based on their assumptions on what their god/gods looked like

 
 
 
gooseisgone
2.4.10  gooseisgone  replied to  TᵢG @2.4.1    7 months ago
The key, however, is that the belief is not based on facts and logic.

Please present the "facts and logic" on how the universe/mankind was formed.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.11  TᵢG  replied to  gooseisgone @2.4.10    7 months ago

Sure.   Is it okay if I summarize because the accumulated knowledge is vast (and I certainly cannot articulate all of the details)?

Our universe emerged from a singularity of unknown nature and as the result of an unknown event.   It is hypothesized that the event was a chain reaction resulting from quantum fluctuations, but science simply does not know.    However, from the first 10−43 seconds (the Planck epoch) onward, science has formal mathematical models showing the rapid expansion of space-time and the formation from an incredible uniform plasma (basically pure energy) to the formation of fundamental forces, the cooling down and formation of hydrogen atoms, then the coalescing of gases into stars and with gravity the production of heavier elements on to super novas and the production of even heavier elements that are then dispersed into space to coalesce into planets and other cosmological bodies.

As for mankind, it is hypothesized that life emerged on earth abiogenesis but this is still hypothetical.   While there has been plenty of research indicating ways in which the primitive factors of life (e.g. amino acids) could form from primordial conditions, science is far from offering an explanation with typical scientific confidence.   However, there is an abundance of explanations for how life evolved from single-cell organisms to complex organisms such as human beings.   

 
 
 
gooseisgone
2.4.12  gooseisgone  replied to  TᵢG @2.4.11    7 months ago
Our universe emerged from a singularity of unknown nature and as the result of an unknown event.   It is hypothesized that the event was a chain reaction resulting from quantum fluctuations, but science simply does not know. 

OK...….tell me what was present "before" these quantum fluctuations. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.13  TᵢG  replied to  gooseisgone @2.4.12    7 months ago

I can point you to where I already answered that (it is right there in the quote you provided):

TiG @2.4.11 ☞ It is hypothesized that the event was a chain reaction resulting from quantum fluctuations, but science simply does not know.

 
 
 
gooseisgone
2.4.14  gooseisgone  replied to  TᵢG @2.4.13    7 months ago
It is hypothesized but science simply does not know.

So you don't know, you can't prove anything, so how can you make the case the God does not exist. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.4.15  TᵢG  replied to  gooseisgone @2.4.14    7 months ago
So you don't know, you can't prove anything, so how can you make the case the God does not exist. 

I do not make the case that God (if you define as 'sentient creator') does not exist.

Where do you see me making that case?

I routinely note that it is possible that a sentient creator exists.    So what are you referring to?

For example, even in this major thread:

TiG @2.3.7Belief in a sentient creator is perfectly rational if the believer recognizes that the belief is speculative.    
 
 
 
cjcold
2.4.16  cjcold  replied to  Tacos! @2.4    7 months ago

Define "scientist" 

Social "scientists" are completely different than scientific method scientists who haven't been bought-and-sold by monied interests. 

As an example, the fossil fuel industry paid anthropogenic global warming deniers who tended to be in their 80s, long retired from actual science and deeply in debt.

The head-hunters at the Heartland Institute are good at recruiting starving geriatric ex scientists to promote their propaganda and who just don't want to die broke.

Won't be believing anybody who takes fossil fuel industry money...… ever.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3  Kathleen    7 months ago

I don’t know if there are any God or Gods, but I would like to know if there is a possibility that consciousness is independent from the brain. Perhaps the brain filters it.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1  TᵢG  replied to  Kathleen @3    7 months ago

First consider if retained information is held by consciousness or held physically in neural connections.   When a human being has brain damage (or destructive disease such as Alzheimer's) is the lost information somehow retained in a consciousness?   If not, then the consciousness has no meaning.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.1.1  Kathleen  replied to  TᵢG @3.1    7 months ago

Nothing is definite, if it was, we would not be discussing this. If we were sure, then the world would be very different.  I will always keep an open mind.  I don’t think any of us are 100% sure.

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.1.2  author  Gordy327  replied to  Kathleen @3.1.1    7 months ago
Nothing is definite, if it was, we would not be discussing this.

I'm not so sure. Once people make up their minds, especially where belief is concerned, they are unlikely to change it regardless of what evidence or proof is presented, or even if something is truly definite. For example, look at YEC's or flat earthers. But such mentalities, especially in the face of overwhelming objective evidence or proof, only highlights the level of closed mindedness.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.1.3  Kathleen  replied to  Gordy327 @3.1.2    7 months ago

Well, I am not talking about any beliefs. I am talking about something that we all may not know or realize yet.  There may be something out there that we have not discovered yet. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.1.4  author  Gordy327  replied to  Kathleen @3.1.3    7 months ago
I am talking about something that we all may not know or realize yet.  There may be something out there that we have not discovered yet. 

Fair enough.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.5  TᵢG  replied to  Kathleen @3.1.1    7 months ago
Nothing is definite, if it was, we would not be discussing this.

Seems to me that consciousness without knowledge is meaningless.    To find consciousness, I would look for the repository of knowledge.   So far, based on all that we know to date, that is the physical brain.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
3.1.6  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  TᵢG @3.1    7 months ago
 When a human being has brain damage (or destructive disease such as Alzheimer's) is the lost information somehow retained in a consciousness?

I've always been interested in the debate over where consciousness resides. If it's in a "soul" as many religious folk claim, then how can brain injuries or disease change a soul? How and why does CTE often cause people personalities to change? If some God supposedly tortures a soul that has committed atrocities for eternity, but it now has Alzheimer's, does the soul even remember what it did to deserve such torture? Does a person who lived all their life as righteous as possible but in the last few years of their life lose their capacity to think clearly and in an episode of dementia run a bus full of kids off a bridge killing dozens, will they be held "responsible" by some higher power?

It makes far more sense to me that there is no "soul" and just the bio-electric mass of brain cells that hold our consciousness and thus anything that can happen to that mass of cells will likely effect the consciousness held within. This also explains why drugs and alcohol can make someone's personality change dramatically at times, because it's a chemical response within the brain, it's not actually getting our "soul" drunk or high.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.7  TᵢG  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @3.1.6    7 months ago

I agree.   To me all evidence points to the physical brain as the source for consciousness.   The death of the brain is also the termination of consciousness and all that the individual knew.   

Until we have evidence suggesting otherwise, it seems reasonable to hold that the obvious is likely true.

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.1.8  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.1.7    7 months ago
I agree.   To me all evidence points to the physical brain as the source for consciousness.   The death of the brain is also the termination of consciousness and all that the individual knew.    Until we have evidence suggesting otherwise, it seems reasonable to hold that the obvious is likely true.

I agree too. It's all about the brain. People who are brain dead are effectively and medically considered (and declared) dead.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.9  TᵢG  replied to  Gordy327 @3.1.8    7 months ago

And those who are brain damaged but living can sometimes lack all knowledge other than basic motor functions.   Where is their knowledge?   Outside of their brain in suspension?   Does new information still flow to this repository?   I just do not see it.

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.1.10  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @3.1.9    7 months ago
And those who are brain damaged but living can sometimes lack all knowledge other than basic motor functions. 

Depending on the nature and location of the damage in the bran, that can be correct. People who suffer strokes can experience all sorts of neurological deficits including cognitive, functional, and/or sensory.

 Where is their knowledge?   Outside of their brain in suspension?   Does new information still flow to this repository?   I just do not see it.

I don't see it either. Some people simply become vegetables. Their brain can be dead (or close to it) but their heart didn't know when to stop beating.

 
 
 
katrix
3.1.11  katrix  replied to  Gordy327 @3.1.10    7 months ago

I tend to view the brain as similar to a computer. Sometimes, the route to a packet is lost but the packet is still on the hard drive, and other times the sector itself is damaged and the data is gone. But if you totally destroy the hard drive, all the data is irretrievably gone.

 
 
 
JBB
3.2  JBB  replied to  Kathleen @3    7 months ago

I believe it is attributable to human vanity that so many still believe against all evidence that their individual consciousness will continue after their physical death. I am content knowing that as I was before I existed I will be so again. Oblivion has its advantages. And therefore, it is my aim to enjoy the ride and hopefully to do as little harm as possible...

I do not begrudge people believing irrational stuff but I do resent it when religious people try to impose their strictures into law and I do think that churches should have to pay taxes...

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.2.1  author  Gordy327  replied to  JBB @3.2    7 months ago
I believe it is attributable to human vanity that so many still believe against all evidence that their individual consciousness will continue after their physical death.

You bring up a good point, which I neglected to mention in the article. Humans like the idea or emotional comfort of being a deity's "special creation" or friend. God/s is the perfect means to make one seem superior, either over others or over the natural world itself ("dominion over the Earth" or the like). Also, god/s are often attributed with qualities that humans possess, like anger, vanity, pettiness, jealousy, compassion, ect.. That alone should be a red flag as to the veracity of the existence of god/s. 

Thank you or bringing that up. I'll have to modify the article to reflect that point when I get a moment.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.2.2  Kathleen  replied to  JBB @3.2    7 months ago

Perhaps some of us are willing to look at more possibilities.  I am not going to be upset if it is just like before we are born. I will keep an open mind instead of a closed one. Btw, I never used religion talking about the brain. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
3.2.3  sandy-2021492  replied to  Kathleen @3.2.2    7 months ago
I will keep an open mind instead of a closed one.

I think most people here have an open mind.  They're open to the possibility that conscience can exist independently of the brain, but in order to seriously consider it, they need evidence.

Holding to a belief in the absence of evidence is every bit as close-minded as refusing to believe compelling evidence.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.2.4  TᵢG  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.2.3    7 months ago

For me, I would need to be able to understand in more specific terms how consciousness could exist outside of the brain.   While anything is possible, at this point I have nothing to grab onto.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.2.5  Kathleen  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.2.3    7 months ago

You can be closed minded on either side. Some people will refuse to admit that there is a possibility that there is life after death and that we can’t be 100% sure. They think they are right and you are just imagining and being hopeful and too emotional about it. Also that people are just afraid to die and can’t face it.  Too me, that can be closed minded too. So no one can tell anyone what it’s like because none of us experienced it yet. 

Like I said, I will not claim I know when some clearly act like they do.

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.2.6  author  Gordy327  replied to  Kathleen @3.2.5    7 months ago
Some people will refuse to admit that there is a possibility that there is life after death and that we can’t be 100% sure.

We can't be 100% certain, that's for sure. But there is no evidence for life after death. So we can't simply accept the claims for one either.

 They think they are right and you are just imagining and being hopeful and too emotional about it. Also that people are just afraid to die and can’t face it. 

No doubt emotion plays into the idea of life after death. People can be afraid to die or miss departed loved ones. What is more emotionally soothing than believing that you'll simply have another life after death or that you'll be with loved one's again? It can certainly make dealing with reality easier.

I will not claim I know when some clearly act like they do

And when someone makes a claim of certainty, that's when the claim should be challenged.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
3.2.7  sandy-2021492  replied to  Kathleen @3.2.5    7 months ago
Some people will refuse to admit that there is a possibility that there is life after death and that we can’t be 100% sure.

I don't see those folks here.  I do see folks saying that there absolutely is a God, and afterlife, etc., with no evidence to support those statements.  Yes, you can be close-minded either way.  Agnostic atheism, which is what most nonbelievers are, by definition allows for the possibility of a God.  It is an open-minded position to take.

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.2.8  author  Gordy327  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.2.7    7 months ago
Agnostic atheism, which is what most nonbelievers are, by definition allows for the possibility of a God.  It is an open-minded position to take.

It is also the most rational, intellectually honest position to take. One is not convinced but is willing to reconsider their position if evidence was forthcoming. By contrast, many believers are probably not willing to admit their beliefs could be wrong or utter BS. This is evident when logical inconsistencies pertaining to god/s (especially the Abrahamistic God) are pointed out and believers will not consider the inconsistencies, much less accept them or rethink their position. In their minds, they believe (probably because the bible says so and they believe) and that's it. It doesn't get much more closed minded than that.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
3.2.9  JohnRussell  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.2.3    7 months ago
Holding to a belief in the absence of evidence is every bit as close-minded as refusing to believe compelling evidence.

Sandy no one will ever prove or disprove the existence of God. Ten thousand years from now the debate will be along the same lines it is today. 

The existence of God cannot be "proven" because by definition God is supernatural, and we cannot approach anything outside of this existence

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.2.10  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.9    7 months ago
The existence of God cannot be "proven" because by definition God is supernatural, and we cannot approach anything outside of this existence

Again, it depends on how you define 'God'.   And, in the above, it also depends on how you define 'supernatural'.   Plenty of things that were supernatural have been found to be quite natural.   Knowledge is a wonderful thing.

 
 
 
Gordy327
3.2.11  author  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.9    7 months ago
The existence of God cannot be "proven" because by definition God is supernatural, and we cannot approach anything outside of this existence

If something is truly supernatural, then it cannot interact or affect the natural realm. If it does, then it is no longer supernatural. So if god is supernatural, then god has no effect on our realm, which makes god essentially a moot point or irrelevant.

Sandy no one will ever prove or disprove the existence of God. 

And yet, there are those that claim with certainty that god exists or is real.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
3.2.12  sandy-2021492  replied to  JohnRussell @3.2.9    7 months ago
we cannot approach anything outside of this existence

If God is "outside of this existence", then how is he to have created this existence?  It sounds like you want it both ways - God pops in long enough to create the universe, then immediately disappears from this existence until he's wanted again for the Apocalypse.  Convenient.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.2.13  Kathleen  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.2.7    7 months ago

I understand, but I have seen words like spaghetti monster and other terms mocking others beliefs. I think there are some (not all) that enjoy getting a laugh out of this. There are some here that do show more respect about the suspect. 

This is a tough subject because people are very passionate about it.

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.2.14  Kathleen  replied to  Kathleen @3.2.13    7 months ago

I mean subject. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
3.2.15  sandy-2021492  replied to  Kathleen @3.2.13    7 months ago
mocking others beliefs

That's not really what we're talking about here, but beliefs aren't sacrosanct.  If they were, some folks would get their hands slapped every time they used "secular progressive" as a pejorative.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3  Drakkonis  replied to  Kathleen @3    7 months ago
I don’t know if there are any God or Gods, but I would like to know if there is a possibility that consciousness is independent from the brain. Perhaps the brain filters it.

You might find this video interesting. It can be hard to follow because it assumes you know a lot of the background information but I think you can get the general idea. Generally, consciousness and the material brain go together, although they aren't the same thing. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.1  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3    7 months ago

Other than implicitly defining the mind as something distinct from the physical brain, what impressed you about this video?   Neuroplasticity is extremely well known.   The fact that the brain reacts to its environment and internal biochemistry and reshapes itself is nothing new or strange.   And it does not mean that there is an external mind doing the reshaping.  The fact that one cannot induce decisions or higher complex cognitive functions by placing probes on the brain certainly does not mean those functions are beyond the brain.   The inability to understand complex cognitive functions such as assembling multi-sensory, multidimensional streams of information into a coherent whole reflects our lack of understanding of the brain;  leaping to the conclusion that this must be functionality of a distinct mind is akin to the 'God did it' conclusion.

This video is clearly trying to argue that the mind is something external to the physical body.   It does include genuine science but the science does not lead to the intended conclusion.   It mostly relies on 'if we do not understand a particular cognitive function then said function must be accomplished outside of the physical brain'.    The logic here is faulty;  probably because of the desire to argue an agenda rather than engage in scientific analysis.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.2  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.1    7 months ago
The fact that the brain reacts to its environment and internal biochemistry and reshapes itself is nothing new or strange.   And it does not mean that there is an external mind doing the reshaping.

Except that is contrary to what was in the video. The evidence in the video, while not definitive, certainly suggests something other than the material brain does more to reshape the brain than "environment and internal biochemistry" can account for. Certainly, external experience can account for it, but other cases do not. I suggest you re-watch from 4:40 to 7:00, paying special attention to 6:10. 

The fact that one cannot induce decisions or higher complex cognitive functions by placing probes on the brain certainly does not mean those functions are beyond the brain.

No, it doesn't, but that wasn't the point. The point was there appeared to be no area of the brain which could induce the patient do decide something. Now, as you say, this doesn't prove that there is a mind separate from the physical brain, but it certainly is a very real possibility, especially in light of the rest of the video. 

The inability to understand complex cognitive functions such as assembling multi-sensory, multidimensional streams of information into a coherent whole reflects our lack of understanding of the brain;  leaping to the conclusion that this must be functionality of a distinct mind is akin to the 'God did it' conclusion.

Which is different from your knee-jerk reaction that this is all part of some sort of religious agenda in what way?

This video is clearly trying to argue that the mind is something external to the physical body.

Actually, if you listen with an unbiased ear, he uses terms like "suggests" and "implies". 

It does include genuine science but the science does not lead to the intended conclusion.

Perhaps, since I am not a neuroscientist, you should take that up with the neuroscientists he quotes in the video. Maybe read some of their material. Then get back to me. 

It mostly relies on 'if we do not understand a particular cognitive function then said function must be accomplished outside of the physical brain'.    The logic here is faulty;  probably because of the desire to argue an agenda rather than engage in scientific analysis.

Well, you're not arguing against me, or even the maker of the video. He is looking at what neuroscientists have researched and concluded. Not that these scientists are claiming we have a soul, but they seem to think the mind and the brain, although intertwined, do not appear to be the same thing. That's not my claim. It seems to be theirs. 

What I find funny as hell is that your mantra is "follow the evidence where it leads" but the moment it appears to say something you don't like, your argument goes into the basement, suggesting it's just some religious agenda. Without any sort of actual science based argument I might add. Just an accusation of religious agenda. Nice. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.3  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.1    7 months ago
Other than implicitly defining the mind as something distinct from the physical brain, what impressed you about this video?

Actually, I've felt for years before watching this video, which was recent, that the mind and the brain were separate things. This video just gave scientific possibilities to support what I already suspected. But to answer your question specifically, what impresses me about the video, and his other ones, is that he approaches the subject purely from reason. He doesn't just claim something, he brings up research and scientific fact to explain why he is saying what he is saying. He has obviously done his research  and presents what he says in a concise, logical manner. It is apparent, to me, at least, he has a depth of knowledge and understanding of what he speaks of.

That isn't to say I accept all that he says. I'm somewhat skeptical of some things he says in other videos, but I appreciate his viewpoint specifically because he brings up ideas I had not thought of. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.4  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.2    7 months ago
Except that is contrary to what was in the video.

In what way?   I went back to the video.   Specifically you pointed to where the video talked about the ability to induce certain brain functions with passive stimulation.   Well the brain is an incredibly complex organ and we know very little about it.   Why would we presume that a crude probe would be able to control all cognitive functions?   

The point was there appeared to be no area of the brain which could induce the patient do decide something.

That is correct and I even wrote that:  "induce decisions".   You read that?   See my opening comment as to why this is not surprising.

Which is different from your knee-jerk reaction that this is all part of some sort of religious agenda in what way?

Quote me.   You are either misreading or 'adding value'.

Actually, if you listen with an unbiased ear, he uses terms like "suggests" and "implies". 

What is lacking Drakk is the argument for the mind being separate from the brain.   The entire video clearly (certainly you will admit this) seeks to promote the idea of the mind being separate from the brain.   Using modest language does not change the agenda.    This would be different if they made a case backed by science instead of stating scientific findings that do not support the argument.   This is largely an argument from ignorance.   We cannot explain how certain cognitive functions work within the brain so maybe the mind is distinct from the physical brain.   At the very best that is an hypothesis.   However, given the vast known unknown (we know how much we do not know) within the physical brain it seems sensible to maybe explore that area a bit more before looking elsewhere.   Ya think?

Then get back to me.

I have done a ton of reading on the brain Drakk.    I am quite comfortable commenting on this video.

Well, you're not arguing against me, or even the maker of the video. He is looking at what neuroscientists have researched and concluded.

Yes!   And those conclusions lead more to 'we have much more research to do on the brain' than they lead to 'oh maybe we should stop trying to figure out the 90% of the brain we do not understand and hypothesize that the mind is immaterial and external to the brain'.   Stating credible scientific findings and then stating an interpretation that does not follow from said findings is a trick that Ken Ham (AiG) routinely uses.   Apparently it works.

Not that these scientists are claiming we have a soul, but they seem to think the mind and the brain, although intertwined, do not appear to be the same thing. That's not my claim. It seems to be theirs. 

Yes.   I agree.  That is what the video is implying.   That is the agenda of which I wrote.

What I find funny as hell is that your mantra is "follow the evidence where it leads" but the moment it appears to say something you don't like, your argument goes into the basement, suggesting it's just some religious agenda.

What I am doing is directly following the evidence to where it leads.   The science does not lead away from the brain but to the brain. Through science we better understand how much we do not know of the brain.   The science suggests we have more to learn before we jump to strange hypotheses.    I am being entirely consistent following the evidence and you are just tossing out an unfounded allegation.

Without any sort of actual science based argument I might add. Just an accusation of religious agenda. Nice. 

You did not see the scientific argument in my comments?    Here, Drakk, I will highlight parts you should pay attention to:

TiG @3.31 ☞ Other than implicitly defining the mind as something distinct from the physical brain, what impressed you about this video?   Neuroplasticity is extremely well known.   The fact that the brain reacts to its environment and internal biochemistry and reshapes itself is nothing new or strange.   And it does not mean that there is an external mind doing the reshaping.  The fact that one cannot induce decisions or higher complex cognitive functions by placing probes on the brain certainly does not mean those functions are beyond the brain.   The inability to understand complex cognitive functions such as assembling multi-sensory, multidimensional streams of information into a coherent whole reflects our lack of understanding of the brain;  leaping to the conclusion that this must be functionality of a distinct mind is akin to the 'God did it' conclusion. This video is clearly trying to argue that the mind is something external to the physical body.   It does include genuine science but the science does not lead to the intended conclusion.   It mostly relies on: 'if we do not understand a particular cognitive function then said function must be accomplished outside of the physical brain'.    The logic here is faulty;  probably because of the desire to argue an agenda rather than engage in scientific analysis.

Did you ignore the blue parts?

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.5  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.3    7 months ago
Actually, I've felt for years before watching this video, which was recent, that the mind and the brain were separate things.

You 'felt' that?

This video just gave scientific possibilities to support what I already suspected.

Where?   Lack of knowledge followed by 'what if this is outside of the physical brain' is pretty weak science.   Speculation is part of science, but it happens early on prior to hypothesis;  not when approaching published explanations.

But to answer your question specifically, what impresses me about the video, and his other ones, is that he approaches the subject purely from reason. He doesn't just claim something, he brings up research and scientific fact to explain why he is saying what he is saying. He has obviously done his research  and presents what he says in a concise, logical manner. It is apparent, to me, at least, he has a depth of knowledge and understanding of what he speaks of.

His implication does not follow from the stated science.   That is the problem Drakk.   Not being able to control higher cognitive functions like decision making with a crude physical instrument is not evidence that the cognitive functions are not present in the brain.   You do not see this??

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.6  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.4    7 months ago
What is lacking Drakk is the argument for the mind being separate from the brain.

Well, if you think that was lacking from the video, there really isn't much to discuss, is there? 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.7  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.4    7 months ago
Did you ignore the blue parts?

Nope. They're nice and blue. Well done. Question back at you. Did you miss all the parts in the video where neuroscientists were making the claim, not the videographer, that the mind seems to be separate from the brain? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.8  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.6    7 months ago
Well, if you think that was lacking from the video, there really isn't much to discuss, is there? 

What is their argument then?   Put it in your own words in summary.   What is their scientific basis for hypothesizing the mind is external to the brain?

If you mention things like neuroplasticity note that this does not in any way mean that the source of neuroplasticity is outside of the body.   To be supportive in a scientific fashion there should at least be evidence that this is externally sourced.   Not simply that it might be possible.   

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.9  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.7    7 months ago
Nope. They're nice and blue.

You then must have seen the scientific basis underlying my argument.

Did you miss all the parts in the video where neuroscientists were making the claim, not the videographer, that the mind seems to be separate from the brain? 

In science a claim is backed up with evidence and reason.   A claim on its own is meaningless.   If you see the supporting evidence and reason then point me to it.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.10  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.5    7 months ago
Not being able to control higher cognitive functions like decision making with a crude physical instrument is not evidence that the cognitive functions are not present in the brain.

Really don't know why I'm bothering at this point, but, do you really think that was the point he was making? Because they couldn't stick a probe in an area of the brain and get a desired reaction, that must  mean the mind doesn't emerge from the brain? The fact is that he brought up many pieces of data, generated and supported by neuroscientists, that appear to strongly suggest that the mind is not emergent from the physical brain. 

What you are doing, and for the reasons you accuse the videographer of doing, is arguing to an agenda. You don't like the idea that the mind may not be an emergent property of a physical brain so you just say it isn't so. That's all you've done. You take one thing at a time and say "it is wrong for this guy to conclude what he does from that piece of information". Well, if that was what he was doing, you'd be right. But that isn't what he is doing. He's going from one piece of evidence to the next, generated by neuroscientists, shows how they're connected and saying it suggests, strongly, that the mind is not emergent from the physical brain. 

All you've done is say "nu uhhh!!!" How about you present your evidence that this guy's argument is wrong, instead? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.11  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.10    7 months ago
The fact is that he brought up many pieces of data, generated and supported by neuroscientists, that appear to strongly suggest that the mind is not emergent from the physical brain. 

Where?  Point me to where you interpret this in the video.

What you are doing, ...

Oh don't follow Tacos! into the personal crap Drakk.  Just engage in debate.

But that isn't what he is doing. He's going from one piece of evidence to the next, generated by neuroscientists, shows how they're connected and saying it suggests, strongly, that the mind is not emergent from the physical brain. 

Where?  Point me to where you interpret this in the video.

All you've done is say "nu uhhh!!!" How about you present your evidence that this guy's argument is wrong, instead? 

All I have written and the only think that registers in your mind is "nu uhhh'?    If you refuse to acknowledge that I have already made a science-based argument what am I supposed to do ... keep copying it and putting in front of you?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.12  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.8    7 months ago
What is their argument then?   Put it in your own words in summary.   What is their scientific basis for hypothesizing the mind is external to the brain?

Well, it seems to me that what was presented suggests that the brain is, concerning consciousness, is basically a hard drive for storing information. Of course, the brain is more than that. It also runs programs, running our bodies and whatnot, but basically, the mind is something else, although it can't operate without the brain. At least not in this reality. To be clear, I don't think the video suggests that the mind can operate (in this reality) apart from the brain any more than the body can operate without the brain. In other words, I think the important point being made here is that the mind is not an emergent property of a physical brain but, rather, two separate things that have to work in tandem to exist in this reality. Without one, the other doesn't exist in this reality. He doesn't put it in those terms, but you asked for my own words. 

The reason I think this is that...

  • From the probe evidence, they couldn't alter the subjects  mind, but only make the subject's body react. As the scientist Rodger Penfield said, "There is no place in the cerebral cortex where an electrical stimulation will cause the patient... to decide." According to the videographer "Penfield concluded there was a causal force missing which could not be explained by brain chemistry alone"  It seems to me that were the mind an emergent property of the brain, this wouldn't be true (assuming it is)
  • External, physical stimulus had little or no effect on OCD patients, where mindful, focused effort changed brain patters, resulting from relief to one degree or another from the disorder. I recall reading in the comments to this video of an apparent OCD afflicted individual who attests to the effectiveness of the doctor mentioned in the video's program concerning this. Assuming this is true, it suggests to me, at least, that the mind, whatever it is, can manipulate and change the brain. 
  • Unified perceptions is another convincing piece of evidence. Apparently, they can map the area of the brain where color is stored, and another area where shapes are stored, but no area where these concepts are unified into a mental model of the unified object. According to the paper the videographer references.. "There is now overwhelming biological and behavioral evidence that the brain contains no stable, high-resolution, full field representation of a visual scene, even though that is what we subjectively experience." and "The structure of the primate visual system has been mapped in detail  and there is no area that could encode this detailed information. The subjective experience is this inconsistent with the neural circuitry." Those were quotes from a scientific peer reviewed paper, according to the videographer. 
  •  As I was watching the video, right from the beginning I had in mind the case of Phineas Gage, the railroad worker who got the iron rod shoved through is brain. A  case I have been aware of for decades. I wondered if he would address such an occurance. He did. That's what I like so much about this guy. He isn't afraid address anything. It makes me think he looks at things objectively, which is convincing. Going on, I have to apologize in advance for this run on paragraph since I don't know how to separate paragraphs in a bullet point list, assuming it's possible. In any case, I found the idea that the physical brain as an emergent property of a non-physical mind intriguing. While the case of Gage suggests strongly that the mind is an emergent property of the physical brain, it only does so if one assumes the priority of the physical brain. If one considers the brain is emergent from the mind, then everything changes. One can understand how brain damage can effect personality. The mind is trying to enact with the physical world through a damaged instrument. I don't present this as established fact, nor do I think does the videographer, but it is a logical explanation for cases such as Gage's. 

 

You then must have seen the scientific basis underlying my argument.

No, actually, I didn't. Basically, what I saw you do was say "nu uhh!" If you want me to believe you have a scientific basis for your argument, present evidence, probably by neuroscientists, that refute the evidence presented by the videographer. Otherwise, you're just sputtering incoherent objections. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.13  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.11    7 months ago
Oh don't follow Tacos! into the personal crap Drakk.  Just engage in debate.

Sorry, Tig. Like Tacos, I call it like I see it. What you've said leads me to believe that your objection to all of this is your personal feelings toward the idea that not only may it be possible that the mind is not emergent from the brain but that the brain may be emergent from the mind. It's pretty clear to me that you have no actual evidence to present against what is presented in the video. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.14  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.11    7 months ago
All I have written and the only think that registers in your mind is "nu uhhh'?    If you refuse to acknowledge that I have already made a science-based argument what am I supposed to do ... keep copying it and putting in front of you?

Because that's all you've done. You haven't made a science based argument. You've only expressed opinion. If you want to present a science based argument, refute, through presenting evidence by other neuroscientists, why what the videographer has presented is wrong. Since you are  not a neuroscientist, whatever you say personally is just as much opinion as what I say. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.15  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.12    7 months ago
Without one, the other doesn't exist in this reality. He doesn't put it in those terms, but you asked for my own words. 

The video started getting very vague towards the end.   But the very best it ever did in the entire video is posit the possibility that the mind is distinct from the physical brain.   No evidence was presented supporting this.   They simply stated an inability to prove all cognitive functions are part of the physical brain.   

  • From the probe evidence, they couldn't alter the subjects  mind, but only make the subject's body react. As the scientist Rodger Penfield said, "There is no place in the cerebral cortex where an electrical stimulation will cause the patient... to decide." 

Already addressed this twice.   They could not use a rough probe to cause a higher cognitive function like decision.   The inability to engage higher cognition with a probe does not mean it is not within the brain.   You get this, right?

  • External, physical stimulus had little or no effect on OCD patients, where mindful, focused effort changed brain patters, resulting from relief to one degree or another from the disorder. I recall reading in the comments to this video of an apparent OCD afflicted individual who attests to the effectiveness of the doctor mentioned in the video's program concerning this. Assuming this is true, it suggests to me, at least, that the mind, whatever it is, can manipulate and change the brain. 

It is already known that we can (through thinking) cause physical changes in our brains.   We can, for example, choose to be more studious and with discipline our brains will actually physically change to help us be more studious.    Nothing new.   No evidence that this comes from an external mind.

  • Unified perceptions is another convincing piece of evidence. 

Again, I addressed this upfront.   The fact that our brains can unify distinct streams of information is well known.   How on Earth do you view this as evidence of an external mind?

  • While the case of Gage suggests strongly that the mind is an emergent property of the physical brain, it only does so if one assumes the priority of the physical brain. If one considers the brain is emergent from the mind, then everything changes. One can understand how brain damage can effect personality. The mind is trying to enact with the physical world through a damaged instrument. I don't present this as established fact, nor do I think does the videographer, but it is a logical explanation for cases such as Gage's. 

The evidence does not distinguish between a damage mind or an external mind working through a damaged brain.   Again, the evidence does not support the hypothesis.   

Basically, what I saw you do was say "nu uhh!" 

Absolutely fascinating.   You had to ignore everything I wrote to dumb things down to that.   One hell of a filtering process going on.

If you want me to believe you have a scientific basis for your argument, present evidence, probably by neuroscientists, that refute the evidence presented by the videographer.

You have it backwards.   The video did not present supporting evidence.   There is nothing to counter.   Anyone can list of scientific observations and then declare an unrelated 'conclusion'.   That is what this video did.   It amazes me that you do not see this.   Look at your 'argument'.   Nothing you posted points to a mind that is necessarily not part of the brain.   The evidence works for a mind that is an emergent part of the brain.   How can you not see this?


Bottom line Drakk, the basic reality is what I have noted several times.   Science knows enough about the brain to know that the super majority is uncharted territory.   The lack of an explanation or the inability to locate the sources of a cognitive function is simply not evidence that this function is not part of the brain.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.16  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.13    7 months ago

You just call it.   That is not admirable.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.17  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.14    7 months ago
If you want to present a science based argument, refute, through presenting evidence by other neuroscientists, why what the videographer has presented is wrong. 

First a science based argument must be made.   The video offered findings but none of these findings are shown to NOT emerge from a physical brain.   The video did not make the argument you (somehow) think it made.   Listing scientific findings and then implying an unrelated conclusion is not a scientific argument.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.18  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.15    7 months ago
But the very best it ever did in the entire video is posit the possibility that the mind is distinct from the physical brain.   No evidence was presented supporting this.   They simply stated an inability to prove all cognitive functions are part of the physical brain.

No, Tig, I'm afraid he did quite a bit more than that. But, still, you continue to make nothing but claims and statements. You present no refuting evidence for what was presented in the video other than opinion. 

What's the deal, TiG? Does the implication that the mind is not emergent from a physical brain frighten you? 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.19  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.17    7 months ago
First a science based argument must be made.   The video offered findings but none of these findings are shown to NOT emerge from a physical brain.

Okay. Fair enough. Present findings that explain what he presents as emergent from the brain. Can you do that? If you could, it would go a long way toward supporting your opinion. 

 
 
 
Kathleen
3.3.20  Kathleen  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3    7 months ago

Thanks for the video, it was interesting.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.21  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.18    7 months ago
You present no refuting evidence for what was presented in the video other than opinion.    ...  Does the implication that the mind is not emergent from a physical brain frighten you? 

Make an attempt to understand what I have been writing.   Juvenile taunts suggest to me that you are not trying to be serious.

The video does not present evidence of mind-body dualism; it cites scientific facts but then leaps to suggests this is mind-body dualism.  This is what I stated in my first comment.   The video cites scientific work such as research in neuroplasticity and then implies this is evidence of an independent mind.   How is this evidence of an independent mind?  In what way, precisely?

Neuroplasticity is a well researched phenomenon.   The brain is capable of changing based on stimuli from the environment and from within the body (as I have already explained).   Where do you find a connection that shows neuroplasticity means that there is an external mind?

Show me the evidence that actually leads to an external mind.   Explain how you think the presence of neuroplasticity means the mind is not an emergent property of the brain.

 
 
 
Sparty On
3.3.22  Sparty On  replied to  Kathleen @3.3.20    7 months ago

I agree, it was.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.23  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.19    7 months ago
Present findings that explain what he presents as emergent from the brain.

The default position is that cognition comes from the brain.   If we cannot figure out how the brain performs an advanced function such as decision-making or integrated sensory perception or innovative thinking or .... (and there is much we do not know here) that does not mean that the source is necessarily outside of the physical brain.

Neuroscience is the first to admit that we (science) have just scratched the surface in understanding how our brains work.  It is thus reasonable to continue exploring the brain before leaping to a conclusion that our lack of an explanation must mean that the answers lie in an even more mysterious host such as a non-corporeal mind.

Now, that said, I am not suggesting that an external mind is impossible.   Who knows?   What I am suggesting is that this video has not presented any evidence of an external mind.   Nothing that would halt scientific research of the brain to find an explanation.   It is using the fallacious argument from ignorance.   We cannot explain where decision making takes place in the brain so therefore it must take place outside of the brain.  

That, Drakk, is not science.   It is not following the evidence.   It is leaping to a desirable conclusion due to a gap in knowledge.   It is very much akin to: 'must be God'.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.24  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.21    7 months ago
Show me the evidence that actually leads to an external mind.

Since you don't accept the evidence presented in the video, what would evidence you would accept look like? What sort of evidence would you need?

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.25  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.24    7 months ago

Drakk.   The evidence does not lead to the conclusion that the mind must be outside of the brain.   This is what I have pointed out to you all along.   

Show me, for example, how the presence (well known) of neuroplasticity leads to the conclusion of necessary dualism?    At what point has the research eliminated the body and the natural environment as the collective source for neuroplasticity?    

Show me, for example, how our current inability to locate a single center in the brain for decision making means that decision making is not in the brain.

As noted, our understanding of the brain is at its infancy.   There is an entire frontier to be analyzed.   We have just scratched the surface.   On what basis can anyone state that a cognitive function is not a function of the brain and must be outside of the brain?    Where do you find evidence that leads one to such a conclusion?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.26  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.25    7 months ago
At what point has the research eliminated the body and the natural environment as the collective source for neuroplasticity? 

Nowhere. Not what was claimed, either. What was claimed was that those aren't the only possibilities for inducing physical changes in brain state. Something you have ignored. As explained in the case of OCD example, what one thought about intensely created a change in brain structure rather than the brain structure changing what one thought about. 

Show me, for example, how the presence (well known) of neuroplasticity leads to the conclusion of necessary dualism?

Nice try on the wording there, TiG. No one has presented this as proven. If you recall, the name of the video is "The case for the soul." The man is presenting his case for why he thinks the mind is not necessarily emergent from the brain. Neither he nor I have stated that it is necessarily dualism. He is presenting the case as to why dualism, as opposed to materialism, better accounts for observed evidence.

Show me, for example, how our current inability to locate a single center in the brain for decision making means that decision making is not in the brain.

Maybe the very fact that we haven't found it???? I mean, that seems like a rather large clue that maybe dualism better accounts for what we see. Oh, sure. You can say we haven't found it, yet, but what if we haven't or won't because it simply isn't there? 

As noted, our understanding of the brain is at its infancy.   There is an entire frontier to be analyzed.   We have just scratched the surface.   

Actually, we know quite a lot about the brain. We know quite a lot about how we think. Stating that it is in it's infancy is an overstatement. Sure, we've got lots left to study. Maybe more to learn than what's already known, but we do know a lot. 

On what basis can anyone state that a cognitive function is not a function of the brain and must be outside of the brain?    Where do you find evidence that leads one to such a conclusion?

The case was made in the video. Apparently you don't think so. That's fine. You aren't required to. Thanks for your opinion and thanks for playing. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.27  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.26    7 months ago
What was claimed was that those aren't the only possibilities for inducing physical changes in brain state. Something you have ignored. As explained in the case of OCD example, what one thought about intensely created a change in brain structure rather than the brain structure changing what one thought about. 

You do not see this as brain activity triggering a change in the brain?   Would that not be the very first thing one would investigate before presuming it is external to the brain?

No one has presented this as proven.

And I have not stated that anyone has claimed this has been proven.   My argument in part is that we should explore the vast unknown of the brain before we start hypothesizing on an external mind.   Science has just scratched the surface on the brain.

If you recall, the name of the video is "The case for the soul." The man is presenting his case for why he thinks the mind is not necessarily emergent from the brain. Neither he nor I have stated that it is necessarily dualism. He is presenting the case as to why dualism, as opposed to materialism, better accounts for observed evidence.

If the video was trying to impart the message that dualism is simply a possibility then that would be fine.   Mind-body dualism has been pondered philosophically since Descarte in the 17th century.   It is of course a possibility.   But this video clearly is trying to suggest that there is now evidence for dualism.   That neuroplasticity, etc. suggest dualism and not simply unknown functionality of the brain itself.   And as you have noted, you walked away with the impression that dualism is better explained by the evidence.

Tell me why.   What evidence leads one to dualism rather than continued research into how the brain works?

Maybe the very fact that we haven't found it???? I mean, that seems like a rather large clue that maybe dualism better accounts for what we see. 

As I noted, this is basically an argument from ignorance.   If we have not found where decisions are made in the brain you take that as a clue that it is not in the brain.   This is basically the same as 'God did it' thinking;  if we cannot explain something it must be God.   You do not see the fundamental flaw in that reasoning?

Oh, sure. You can say we haven't found it, yet, but what if we haven't or won't because it simply isn't there? 

LOL.   Don't you think we should get close to mastering our understanding of the brain before we jump ship?    Again, neuroscience admits to just scratching the surface.   That surely should tell you that we have all sorts of research before we even get close to understanding even the majority of how the brain works.   You are really jumping ship early.

Actually, we know quite a lot about the brain. We know quite a lot about how we think. Stating that it is in it's infancy is an overstatement. Sure, we've got lots left to study. Maybe more to learn than what's already known, but we do know a lot. 

Drakk, now you are denying what is well known.   Try to find any credible scientific treatment of the brain where the authors claim that brain science is mature.   

The case was made in the video. Apparently you don't think so. That's fine. You aren't required to. Thanks for your opinion and thanks for playing. 

You cannot even explain to me how you have connected the dots??    If you buy this video's message then you should be able to explain why you think the scientific findings enumerated in this video lead to an external mind (which is pure speculation) rather than functions of the brain that we do not yet understand.

No, the video does not do it.  It lists genuine science and then leaps to duality.   No following the evidence to where it leads but rather a disconnected leap to speculation.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.28  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.27    7 months ago
You do not see this as brain activity triggering a change in the brain?   

It's possible. Problem is, there's no evidence for it. There's only assumption that the mind is an emergent property of a physical brain, therefore, changes in the brain must be made by the brain. Seeing the issue in only these terms stems from a materialist view of existence. 

What this video does, whether you think so or not, is supply an answer to why we observe what we do concerning the scientific evidence presented in the video. It is certainly plausible that the mind is it's own thing, distinct from, but dependent on, the brain. There is nothing that scientifically disproves the idea. Only an insistence on materialism. 

Would that not be the very first thing one would investigate before presuming it is external to the brain?

They are investigating it so what's the problem? 

My argument in part is that we should explore the vast unknown of the brain before we start hypothesizing on an external mind.

Why? Because of what it might imply? There's not a thing wrong with hypothesizing an external mind. Hypothesizing is a step in the scientific method. If some in the scientific community do so, then what's wrong with that? What's supposed to happen is that someone else, who doesn't think the mind is separate, is supposed to present evidence as to why that hypothesis is not true. 

Now, if someone was hypothesizing an external mind, that is, a mind that is not an emergent property of a physical brain, in spite of established evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain, that would be different. Can you present such evidence instead of just dismissing this video? 

But this video clearly is trying to suggest that there is now evidence for dualism.   That neuroplasticity, etc. suggest dualism and not simply unknown functionality of the brain itself.   And as you have noted, you walked away with the impression that dualism is better explained by the evidence.

First, let's get the neuroplasticity thing straightened out. He doesn't advance duality because the mind has been proven to be plastic.  When he's speaking of plasticity, he's imparting information about a property of the brain, not saying it proves duality.

Second, yes, I think the video does exactly that. I think it makes a good case for dualism, based on the evidence presented. Now, of course, that could be wrong, but so far all you have done is state that we don't know, neuroscience is still in it's infancy and we have more research to do. Well, that's all true, but that doesn't make an argument against duality. 

It is of course a possibility.

Yes, but not one you really believe to be a possibility. You just say things like this as a sort of escape clause. You fully expect and have no doubt that science will show that the mind is an emergent property of a physical brain. Nothing wrong with that, except that it blinds you to other possibilities. 

Tell me why.   What evidence leads one to dualism rather than continued research into how the brain works?

I'm not going to fight with you over whether what was in the video constitutes evidence or not anymore. Waste of time. However, why not drop the strawman that either I or the video suggest that no more research need be or should be done?

As I noted, this is basically an argument from ignorance.

Not really. While we may have lots to learn about the brain, it isn't as if we don't know anything. We know a great deal about it. The question must be asked by any actually open minded scientist. Maybe we haven't found the mind because it isn't in the brain? And there's not a thing wrong with asking it. 

But the same could be true of your view as well, if you want to throw around argument from ignorance. You don't know where the mind resides either, but you believe it is an emergent property of the brain anyway. You simply have faith that you will find it in the brain.

This is basically the same as 'God did it' thinking

I disagree. As of the moment, we can't find the mind in the brain. The video asks the question "what if the reason we cannot explain how the brain processes produce the mind is because the brain doesn't produce the mind?" and then goes on to explain, using the evidence presented in the video, why this might be the case. That's hardly just sitting back and saying "the mind and brain are each their own thing." C'mon, TiG. 

LOL.   Don't you think we should get close to mastering our understanding of the brain before we jump ship?    Again, neuroscience admits to just scratching the surface.   That surely should tell you that we have all sorts of research before we even get close to understanding even the majority of how the brain works.   You are really jumping ship early.

And you're just not thinking. Jumping ship early? I've never thought the essential me was produced by the brain. Hello? Christian, remember? I've always believed I have a soul. And, again, nobody is advocating we stop researching the brain. Nothing like it. Research away and have fun. 

Drakk, now you are denying what is well known.   Try to find any credible scientific treatment of the brain where the authors claim that brain science is mature.

Nice strawman. 

You cannot even explain to me how you have connected the dots??

And you can't explain to me why the mind is not it's own thing but is an emergent property of the brain. 

Besides, I can and have explained to you how I have connected the dots. Heck, all you have to do is watch the video to know that. What I can't get you to do is accept it. That's on you. If you don't want to accept it, then don't. 

No, the video does not do it.  It lists genuine science and then leaps to duality.   No following the evidence to where it leads but rather a disconnected leap to speculation.

Thanks for your opinion. Mine's different. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.29  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.28    7 months ago
It's possible. Problem is, there's no evidence for it.

No evidence?   Drakk, neuroscience continues to trace the chemical origins of neuroplasticity.   It is not as if they observe neuroplasticity (and there are many forms) and simply have no idea of the origin.    Don't presume that ' scratching the surface' means that science is entirely clueless.   The core of the research here is on the brain, the nervous system, genetics and environmental stimulus.   The evidence overwhelmingly suggests that functions of the brain emanate from the brain.   It is unusual for someone to speculate that brain functions do not actually occur in the brain.    Here is a long article , but I will just provide one excerpt to illustrate what I am talking about:

Taken together, these findings highlight the critical role of neuromodulator systems as the main gating mechanisms of plasticity in adult sensory cortex, as well as their important role in shaping cortical function and cognitive abilities. Indeed, both neurochemically boosting cholinergic transmission ( Greuel et al., 1988 ; Voss et al., 2016 ) and stimulating the basal forebrain — from which the cholinergic neurons project to the cortex — ( Kilgard and Merzenich, 1998 ; Froemke et al., 2007 ; Kang and Vaucher, 2009 ; Kang et al., 2014 ) have been shown to have a significant effect on learning rates and the cortical processing of stimuli. Stimulating the dopaminergic system has also been shown to improve cortical signal-to-noise ratio ( Winterer and Weinberger, 2004 ; Kroener et al., 2009 ), to enhance visual perceptual performance ( Müller et al., 1998 ; Noudoost and Moore, 2011 ) and to modulate plasticity within sensory cortex ( Bao et al., 2001 ; Hui et al., 2009 ). These data provide interesting research avenues worth exploring to develop methods to promote neuroplasticity in situations of learning difficulties or of recovery following brain injury.

The understanding of our brain and neuroplasticity extends into the various systems of the brain where science has already found cause and effect of factors such as the level of dopamines produced by the brain.

There's only assumption that the mind is an emergent property of a physical brain, therefore, changes in the brain must be made by the brain. Seeing the issue in only these terms stems from a materialist view of existence. 

Most people start with the obvious and then proceed to the strange or unusual once the obvious has been sufficiently studied.   When trying to understand the brain it seems reasonable (and neuroscientists apparently agree) that one should study the brain and its environmental influences.

What this video does, whether you think so or not, is supply an answer to why we observe what we do concerning the scientific evidence presented in the video. It is certainly plausible that the mind is it's own thing, distinct from, but dependent on, the brain. There is nothing that scientifically disproves the idea. Only an insistence on materialism. 

" supply an answer to why we observe what we do concerning the scientific evidence presented in the video "     I cannot parse this.   Seems like you are saying that this video provides an interpretation of select scientific evidence.   If so, then I agree;  it certainly does provide an interpretation of science.   Trouble is, it makes a claim that is not based on the scientific evidence it presents.

This video is promoting the idea of the mind being part of a ' soul '.    Interpreting this as a scientific tutorial is a mistake.

They are investigating it so what's the problem? 

Nothing if it is just a side project.   If resources went from studying the brain to trying to find mind-body duality then the problem would be an unwise use of resources.  The other problem is that people (like you) observe this stuff and just accept it as science.   The video implies that the mind might be distinct from the physical brain so this registers (spuriously) as 'science acknowledges the possibility of a soul carrying our minds'.   In reality, this is mere speculation by a tiny minority of scientists.

Why?

Why should brain research focus on the brain?    Really?   I have to explain this again?    We have just scratched the surface in our understanding of the brain.  It is a bit premature to look elsewhere.

Because of what it might imply?

Look Drakk, it is the religious person who would fear science.   The irreligious will not have their worlds crumble if science discovers something unexpected.   If, for example, we were to discover that we have souls that carry our minds, I for one would find that fascinating and intriguing.   It opens possibilities that are incredible.   There is no rational reason for a non-religious person to be concerned about discovering something new.   In contrast, when science discovers factors that contradict religious views, that causes real problems for the religious.   They must find a way to deal with the conflict and not lose their faith.   Fear of discovery is a factor or religious thinking, not of secular thinking.

There's not a thing wrong with hypothesizing an external mind.

Hypothesizing is not valid without supporting evidence.   Speculation, however, certainly can take place.   Typically scientists will engage in speculation prior to formulating hypotheses.    This video is speculation.   It is also deceptive in that it convinces people (like you) that there is actual scientific evidence for a mind existing outside of the brain.

Hypothesizing is a step in the scientific method.  ...

Yes, see above jrSmiley_115_smiley_image.png

Now, if someone was hypothesizing an external mind, that is, a mind that is not an emergent property of a physical brain, in spite of established evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain, that would be different. Can you present such evidence instead of just dismissing this video? 

I am not dismissing the video Drakk.   I am arguing that the video is pure speculation and it misleads people into thinking evidence supports the speculation when it does not.   The video is fine for entertainment purposes and to trigger our imaginations.   It is not, however, informing people of science.

First, let's get the neuroplasticity thing straightened out. He doesn't advance duality because the mind has been proven to be plastic.  When he's speaking of plasticity, he's imparting information about a property of the brain, not saying it proves duality.

Neuroplacity is mentioned as part of a list of actual science.   Likely to give credibility to the eventual leaping claim that there is evidence for a mind detached from the brain.

Second, yes, I think the video does exactly that. I think it makes a good case for dualism, based on the evidence presented.

Evidence of something necessarily leads to that something.   You have yet to explain how the evidence presented in this video leads one to hypothesize a detached mind rather than an as-of-yet unexplained function of the brain.

Now, of course, that could be wrong, but so far all you have done is state that we don't know, neuroscience is still in it's infancy and we have more research to do. Well, that's all true, but that doesn't make an argument against duality. 

I have stated quite a bit more than that.   But my point is that the study of the brain should study the damn brain until we at least have some level of mastery.   If we are still in the early stages of understanding the brain then it is a bit premature to leap off into speculations that brain functionality is really implemented outside of the brain simply because we do not yet have a brain-based explanation.   Seems like common sense to me.   Unless one has an agenda.

Yes, but not one you really believe to be a possibility.

I see no reason why this is not possible.   All sorts of things are possible.   If one believes something simply because it is possible then one is prone to believe anything.

You just say things like this as a sort of escape clause. You fully expect and have no doubt that science will show that the mind is an emergent property of a physical brain. Nothing wrong with that, except that it blinds you to other possibilities. 

Follow the evidence Drakk.   If science gains a mastery of the brain and still cannot figure out the mind then it will naturally explore other areas.   Eventually, science will figure this out (I am confident of that).   But if one is to be sensible, one does not run off on wild speculation when one has a large unexplored territory.

I'm not going to fight with you over whether what was in the video constitutes evidence or not anymore. Waste of time. 

Yeah, well what you refuse to answer is actually my fundamental question.

However, why not drop the strawman that either I or the video suggest that no more research need be or should be done?

I did not state that.   I have been emphasizing why it is silly to leap off into pure speculation rather then continue research on the brain given so much is left to understand.   

Not really. While we may have lots to learn about the brain, it isn't as if we don't know anything. We know a great deal about it. The question must be asked by any actually open minded scientist.   Maybe we haven't found the mind because it isn't in the brain ? And there's not a thing wrong with asking it. 

Drakk, the speculation that brain functions such as decision making might be in a detached mind stems from the lack of knowledge of how this is accomplished in the brain.   The support for the speculation of a detached mind is an argument from ignorance.

But the same could be true of your view as well, if you want to throw around argument from ignorance. You don't know where the mind resides either, but you believe it is an emergent property of the brain anyway. You simply have faith that you will find it in the brain.

I have not stated that the mind necessarily is an emergent property of the brain.   I have stated that the obvious place to look for the mind (and clearly much of what we consider the mind has indeed been found in the brain) is the brain.    I have stated that it makes sense to continue the research because we have just scratched the surface.    You play these stupid word games with 'faith' and 'belief'.   Do you really think that accomplishes anything?

I disagree. As of the moment, we can't find the mind in the brain. 

Where do you get the idea that we cannot find the mind in the brain?   Do you consider some cognitive functions to be not part of the mind?   I suppose every cognitive function that has some explanation based on the brain cannot be part of the mind and that only those functions where we are clueless constitute the mind?

The video asks the question " what if the reason we cannot explain how the brain processes produce the mind is because the brain doesn't produce the mind ?" and then goes on to explain, using the evidence presented in the video, why this might be the case. That's hardly just sitting back and saying " the mind and brain are each their own thing ." 

Yes it does.   Fun speculation.   Bad science.

And you're just not thinking. Jumping ship early? I've never thought the essential me was produced by the brain. Hello? Christian, remember? I've always believed I have a soul. And, again, nobody is advocating we stop researching the brain. Nothing like it. Research away and have fun. 

Confirmation bias.

Nice strawman. 

Poor reading.   You were arguing that we know quite a bit about the brain in counter to my statement that we have a ton to learn.   So I responded with: " Try to find any credible scientific treatment of the brain where the authors claim that brain science is mature."    That is not a strawman, that is my clear challenge to you that you will not find credible scientists claiming a mature understanding of the brain.   In short, sure science knows a lot about the brain, but we are still in our infancy.

And you can't explain to me why the mind is not it's own thing but is an emergent property of the brain. 

Let's see, Russell's teapot comes to mind.   I cannot explain why the mind is not embedded in our hearts either.   Nor can I explain why the mind is not part of a universal force that connects all life forms.   Get real.   Start with the brain and work out.   When we understand the brain to some level of maturity and still cannot find the entire mind then it makes sense to engage in speculation.   Science tends to work that way.   When trying to understand the evolutionary process of the bird, scientists will typically not engage in speculative research on an environmental ether that triggers a genetic shift towards wings and flight.

Besides, I can and have explained to you how I have connected the dots. Heck, all you have to do is watch the video to know that. What I can't get you to do is accept it. That's on you. If you don't want to accept it, then don't. 

Where?  Deliver, do not simply claim to have delivered.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.30  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.29    7 months ago
No evidence?

Correct. While the article, what I have read of it so far, is interesting, it doesn't really apply to what we are talking about. That is, the stated goal of the article is to "... shed light on the various factors that contribute to neuroplastic variability observed within cortical sensory systems, with a special focus on the auditory system as a model." That appears to mean that what they are discussing is not how the mind arises from a physical brain, but rather, the physical process behind changing brain patterns. While fascinating, so far, I'm afraid I don't see the relevance. 

The understanding of our brain and neuroplasticity extends into the various systems of the brain where science has already found cause and effect of factors such as the level of dopamines produced by the brain.

No argument here. But you are talking about physical processes, not how these things explain the existence of the mind. 

When I said "no evidence" what I would expect you to provide is something along the lines of studies or whatever that shows or claims to show specifically how the mind arises from a physical process. For instance, we apparently understand how and where color information is stored  and processed within the brain. We also understand the same thing concerning shapes. How is it, though, that we can observe the brain processing these things but cannot observe the brain combining them in order to project the subjective experience of observing a green circle? Does it make sense to you that we can see the processing power of storing a color and a shape but not the processing power of combining them for the subjective experience, a process that presumably would require more processing power than simply processing the individual attributes and therefore should be easier to detect? As Penfield said, it seems to happen somewhere else. 

Most people start with the obvious and then proceed to the strange or unusual once the obvious has been sufficiently studied.   When trying to understand the brain it seems reasonable (and neuroscientists apparently agree) that one should study the brain and its environmental influences.

Except that strange and unusual is actually your opinion, stemming from your materialist viewpoint. Most people would not find it strange or unusual  to think the mind is not produced by the brain. Few people would describe themselves as simply the expression of a chemical reaction in a lump of tissue. Whether true or not, most people think they are more than that. So the idea is only strange and/or unusual through forcing a materialistic viewpoint. 

I cannot parse this.   Seems like you are saying that this video provides an interpretation of select scientific evidence.   If so, then I agree;  it certainly does provide an interpretation of science.   Trouble is, it makes a claim that is not based on the scientific evidence it presents.

It seems you parsed it well enough. I disagree that the claim is not based on the science it presents. I think it does exactly that. 

This video is promoting the idea of the mind being part of a ' soul '.    Interpreting this as a scientific tutorial is a mistake.

It wasn't presented as a tutorial. 

Nothing if it is just a side project.

You misunderstand. When I said they are investigating it I meant that they are doing the scientific investigation you prefer, not that they are intentionally investigating whether the mind is separate from the brain. And I am 100% for it. Because, if the mind is separate from, although dependent on, the brain, the work you prefer will reveal it conclusively. 

Why should brain research focus on the brain?    Really?

And you accuse me of word games. When you responded to my "Why" you apparently intentionally isolated it from the context so you could ask this question. The reality is that my question was in response you your statement...

My argument in part is that we should explore the vast unknown of the brain before we start hypothesizing on an external mind.

So, my question of " Why ", in context, becomes " Why should we wait for some imaginary future point where it would be okay by whatever your standard is to start wondering if maybe the mind is something distinct from the physical brain? Because of what it might imply ?" So, no, it's not "why" should brain research focus on the brain.

Look Drakk, it is the religious person who would fear science.

Um, no. Oh, sure, certainly there are some, perhaps even most (if we are speaking of the total aggregate of religious people in the world) might fear science but it is hardly a law. I have not the slightest fear of science. It in no way threatens my beliefs. But, doesn't it seem to you that some atheists are threatened by the idea of God in the same way you imagine science threatens religion? Look at you and Gordy, for instance. You, and those like you, throw up your shield of "empiric and verifiable evidence" and if it doesn't meet that criteria, it's not allowed. Shouldn't even be seriously considered. 

In contrast, when science discovers factors that contradict religious views, that causes real problems for the religious.   They must find a way to deal with the conflict and not lose their faith.   Fear of discovery is a factor or religious thinking, not of secular thinking.

Hardly true of everyone. If it were, there would be no Christian scientists. 

Hypothesizing is not valid without supporting evidence.

This is correct, however irrelevant to the point I made that there's nothing wrong with having the hypothesis in the first place. It is not necessary to have supporting evidence in order to develop a hypothesis. That comes after making the hypothesis. A hypothesis is an idea of how to explain observed phenomena. It's the same with the hypothesis that the mind is an emergent construct of the brain. That, too, is a hypothesis and one that remains unproven. 

 I am arguing that the video is pure speculation and it misleads people into thinking evidence supports the speculation when it does not.

But you're not actually arguing this. You're just stating it. In order to argue it you must provide evidence that the duality hypothesis is incorrect. You have yet to do so. 

Evidence of something necessarily leads to that something.   You have yet to explain how the evidence presented in this video leads one to hypothesize a detached mind rather than an as-of-yet unexplained function of the brain.

Yes, actually, I have. You just simply declare it as not evidence without presenting an actual counterargument. You just decree it, in other words. I did it again, above in the "no evidence" paragraph, but you will likely just make the same decree again. In spite of that, a theory that says that the mind is not emergent from the brain is supported, currently, more than an emergent mind from the brain because what we know at this moment is that we cannot locate the mind in the brain, something predicted, or at least explained, by the hypothesis.  

But my point is that the study of the brain should study the damn brain until we at least have some level of mastery.

And I agree. However, what you imply is that it is axiomatic that in discovering the mind, we have to study the brain. That is, you assume, without evidence, that the mind is an emergent property of the brain. Not that this isn't a reasonable assumption. What the video does is suggest that evidence suggests that the mind is not emergent from the brain. It gave actual reasons as to why this may be so, based on evidence, but you just dismiss it as a leap of whatever and not a valid hypothesis.

Further, what level of mastery would you be satisfied with in order to consider that the mind is distinct from the brain? How do you know where our mastery of the mind currently is at this moment? You don't know because in order to know that, you'd have to know what 100% mastery would look like. That isn't my opinion, it's the opinion of a cognitive neuroscientist named Rebecca Saxe (16:40). Also, it's simple logic. 

If we are still in the early stages of understanding the brain then it is a bit premature to leap off into speculations that brain functionality is really implemented outside of the brain simply because we do not yet have a brain-based explanation.

Fine. Again, at what point would it be appropriate to entertain the hypothesis that the mind is not emergent from the brain? Presumably, when we've exhausted every other possibility? Well, that brings up two obvious questions. First, how will we ever know we've exhausted all other avenues of explanation and, second, why is it necessary to exhaust those avenues prior to entertaining the hypothesis? 

I see no reason why this is not possible.   All sorts of things are possible.   If one believes something simply because it is possible then one is prone to believe anything.

Possibly, but that isn't what we're dealing with here. The video doesn't argue the hypothesis simply because it's possible. It presents scientific evidence and notes that a mind, distinct from the brain, explains what we see. Apparently you can't see this. 

If science gains a mastery of the brain and still cannot figure out the mind then it will naturally explore other areas.

Um, yeah. Again, you imagine some undefined point at which it might be acceptable to examine the hypothesis. According to your standards, that point is unlikely to ever get here if left to you. You simply throw out this undefined "mastery" of the brain. 

Yeah, well what you refuse to answer is actually my fundamental question.

From my point of view, I've told you numerous times the bathroom is down this hall, third door on the left, but you just keep claiming I haven't told you where the bathroom is. 

I did not state that.   I have been emphasizing why it is silly to leap off into pure speculation rather then continue research on the brain given so much is left to understand.

Yes, you did and you did so again in this very quote. It's in the "rather than." That is, you present it as an either/or situation when it is not. We either approach the problem from the duality perspective or we continue in the manner you advocate. That's hardly the case and is in no way necessary. I have not the least problem with continuing scientific examination of the brain and it's functions in the manner you champion. This is because I think it will only increase support for the idea that the mind is a separate thing over time. 

And, why not be honest? It's hardly pure speculation. Or it's no more speculative than your view. Unified perception. The video thinks we can't find the mechanism because the mechanism doesn't reside in the brain. You think it does but cannot provide evidence for it. How is your view less speculative than the video's? 

Drakk, the speculation that brain functions such as decision making might be in a detached mind stems from the lack of knowledge of how this is accomplished in the brain.   The support for the speculation of a detached mind is an argument from ignorance.

And saying that this is speculation is based on nothing but the assumption/speculation that decision making is a function of and accomplished by the brain. If this is not true, present evidence to the contrary. 

I have not stated that the mind necessarily is an emergent property of the brain.   I have stated that the obvious place to look for the mind (and clearly much of what we consider the mind has indeed been found in the brain) is the brain.

I can't directly comment on this as I don't know what  you consider to be the mind. For instance, do you consider knowledge to be a part of the mind? I would agree that the brain stores knowledge but I would not consider that as mind. To illustrate what I mean, a hard drive and associated chips on the motherboard (not including the CPU) contains knowledge but I would not consider it to be mind. Although the analogy isn't perfect, I'd consider the mind to be the CPU. In this analogy, the mind (CPU) can access the hard drive and motherboard chips (the brain) in order to make decisions. 

In the same way, the brain obviously contains something equivalent to a BIOS chip. Something that doesn't require a mind in order to operate. Breathing, heartbeat, hormone release or cessation, etc. 

Having said all that, while you haven't specifically stated that the mind is an emergent property of the brain, it's certainly implied by your position, else why stress that the obvious place to look for the mind is in the brain? 

 I have stated that it makes sense to continue the research because we have just scratched the surface.

No one has disagreed with this, with the exception that we don't know whether we've just scratched the surface. For all we know, we know 50% of what there is to know about, or what can be known, the brain. Or 10%, 70% or some other value. 

You play these stupid word games with 'faith' and 'belief'.   Do you really think that accomplishes anything?

You believe that continued, materialistic examination of the brain will reveal that the mind is emergent from the brain, do you not? Yes, I know you haven't specifically stated it but, be honest. That is what you expect to find, do you not? I mean, if you were truly open minded, you would not have the reaction you do to this video. It certainly is possible that the mind is something separate from the brain and this video, whether you admit it or  not, gives reasons for thinking this may be the case. Your view would be something like "A fascinating idea! It will be exciting to see what the continued study of the brain reveals about this" instead of "it's just pure speculation and there's no basis for suggesting it." 

Since you have no actual evidence to present that shows the mind is generated by the brain, what would you call your belief that the brain generates the mind? Or, if you prefer different wording, that the mind is found in the brain? 

Where do you get the idea that we cannot find the mind in the brain?

(Sigh) Context, TiG, context. Do you not recognize the words "at the moment" modify "we can't find the mind in the brain?" Since you seem to have problems with context, saying "at the moment" means that at this point in time we cannot, meaning we haven't, found the mind in the brain. I get this idea because, at this time, no one can point to anywhere in the brain that constitutes, is responsible for, the mind. 

Do you consider some cognitive functions to be not part of the mind?   I suppose every cognitive function that has some explanation based on the brain cannot be part of the mind and that only those functions where we are clueless constitute the mind?

Couldn't say without knowing your definition of cognitive function. For instance, whatever is responsible for my continued breathing without having to think about I would not recognize as a cognitive function. But anything I'm aware of that requires thought I would consider cognitive. 

Actually, that's an interesting subject. I can be standing on a high place, looking out at what there is to see. How much of what I am experiencing at that moment mentally is cognitive and how much is just subroutines doing their thing? For instance, I could be standing on El Capitan in Yosemite and thinking about taxes, yet at the same time what I am seeing is making some sort of impression on me. 

Yes it does.   Fun speculation.   Bad science.

If only you'd explain why. To date, it rests solely on the idea that it isn't materialistic. Not in those words, of course, but that's what it amounts to. 

Poor reading.   You were arguing that we know quite a bit about the brain in counter to my statement that we have a ton to learn.

No. I was arguing that we know quite a bit about the brain to counter your statement that we have barely scratched the surface, not that we have a ton to learn. Barely scratched the surface implies two things. First is that we know how much there is to learn about the brain, else you could not make that claim. Second, that in light of the first, you are able to put some sort of percentage on how much we've learned in comparison to what can be learned. 

Had you said "we have a ton to learn" I would have agreed. But that isn't what you said. You said we've barely scratched the surface. How do you know that? You don't because you don't actually know how much is actually knowable about the brain. Something necessary in order to make such a claim. For all either of us knows, we may know 50% of what is knowable about the brain. 

My statement is merely that we know quite a lot about the brain and how it functions. As evidence, just look at the article you referenced at the beginning of your post. As I stated earlier, what we may know may be less than what is still to learn, but that doesn't mean we've "only scratched the surface." 

Try to find any credible scientific treatment of the brain where the authors claim that brain science is mature.

Saying that we know quite a lot about the brain doesn't mean that such a statement equates with thinking brain science is mature. But this is what you imply by posing the question. Strawman. 

Let's see, Russell's teapot comes to mind.   I cannot explain why the mind is not embedded in our hearts either.   Nor can I explain why the mind is not part of a universal force that connects all life forms.   Get real.   Start with the brain and work out.

I understand Russell's teapot but I don't understand how you think it applies to this. Or, maybe I do. You insist that the video states the  mind is separate from the brain sans supporting evidence. That must be what you're thinking of. 

I'd love to start with the brain. Explain where the mind resides in it. 

When we understand the brain to some level of maturity and still cannot find the entire mind then it makes sense to engage in speculation.

Awesome! Now all you have to do is explain what "some level of maturity" would mean and why we should wait for it. Seriously. Give me one reason why science should not, at this time, consider that the mind may not be in the brain other than it isn't a materialistic view. 

Where?  Deliver, do not simply claim to have delivered.

How many times to you expect me to tell you where the bathroom is when you refuse to recognize that I've done so?

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.31  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.30    7 months ago
While fascinating, so far, I'm afraid I don't see the relevance. 

The point was to illustrate that neuroscience is not roaming about wondering how neuroplasticity, etc. is triggered by the brain.   There exists plenty of evidence (understanding) of brain chemistry; certainly enough to continue research on the brain rather than leap to an unknown, undefinable concept such as an immaterial mind.

How is it, though, that we can observe the brain processing these things but cannot observe the brain combining them in order to project the subjective experience of observing a green circle?

Recognize that neuroscience is using crude instruments such as probes and dyes.   The brain is a complex network of specialized cells, dendrites, etc. that are communicating with electrical signals based on thresholds.   The average brain has ~90 billion neurons connected with ~100 trillion synapses.   Consider the complexity of such a network.   Now how much of that do you think we can measure today?   The measurements are crude and physical and nowhere near the actual nodes of the network.   Your expectations of neuroscience seem to be too high if you wonder why some of the processes of the brain remain out of scope of current tools.

Most people would not find it strange or unusual  to think the mind is not produced by the brain.

Uh huh.

And I am 100% for it. Because, if the mind is separate from, although dependent on, the brain, the work you prefer will reveal it conclusively. 

I would support this if there were credible evidence and there was actually something to investigate.   Can you imagine setting up a laboratory to investigate a non-physical mind?    If you are not dealing with the physical brain in this lab then what exactly are you doing?   Better to continue researching the brain until there is a good reason to go elsewhere;  hopefully by then the 'elsewhere' is something that can actually be tested.

 " Why should we wait for some imaginary future point where it would be okay by whatever your standard is to start wondering if maybe the mind is something distinct from the physical brain? Because of what it might imply ?" 

(see above)

It in no way threatens my beliefs. But, doesn't it seem to you that some atheists are threatened by the idea of God in the same way you imagine science threatens religion? 

Well that is good to hear.  If you think agnostic atheists are threatened by the prospect of a god then you truly do not understand the agnostic atheist.   I have explained to you in the past how if we did get persuasive evidence of a god that we would have no problem instantly becoming theists.   Ask Gordy, Sandy, et.al. about this and you will get your understanding more properly aligned.   We are not against the idea of a god, we just are not persuaded that any god exists.   We are, in fact, persuaded that the concept of god is man-made (i.e. all known gods are fiction) while recognizing that a sentient creator is possible (but that nobody knows anything about this entity).

You're just stating it. In order to argue it you must provide evidence that the duality hypothesis is incorrect. 

The evidence does not lead to a mind distinct from the body.  If you disagree then show me why.  You are making the claim (agreeing with the video) that the mind might be distinct from the body.   I have asked you to show me specifically how the stated evidence supports that view.   You claim you have yet refuse to deliver.   Not much reading between the lines required for that.   Since you are making this claim you bear the burden of evidence.  

I did it again, above in the "no evidence" paragraph

Connect the dots Drakk.   Take an item of evidence presented in the video and show how that leads to an immaterial mind distinct from the brain more than a function of the brain that we do not yet fully understand.   When someone repeatedly insists they have already explained something rather than simply insert their explanation, that usually means they are dodging.   Don't keep telling me you already explained:  show me.   Connect the dots.  Lay it out.   List the evidence and show how that evidence leads to a disembodied mind more than to continued research on the brain.

That is, you assume, without evidence, that the mind is an emergent property of the brain.

It is a natural assumption that studying the brain will reveal the mind.   It is unnatural to assume that the mind is not an emergent property of the brain.   That is why actual evidence of a non-physical mind is critical.   So of course I am talking about studying the brain to understand the mind.   If the study of the brain achieves maturity and the mind remains a mystery then of course pursue other avenues.    This, again, is simply common sense.

Further, what level of mastery would you be satisfied with in order to consider that the mind is distinct from the brain? 

That would be determined by the researchers.   I am confident that neuroscientists would be able to gauge when they have sufficient knowledge of the brain to determine that the 'mind' is simply not there (hypothetically).

Again, at what point would it be appropriate to entertain the hypothesis that the mind is not emergent from the brain?

Mature understanding of the brain.

It presents scientific evidence and notes that a mind, distinct from the brain, explains what we see. Apparently you can't see this. 

Then connect the dots as I have requested repeatedly.

We either approach the problem from the duality perspective or we continue in the manner you advocate.

Realistically neuroscience will continue with the brain because a detached mind is untestable.   I am talking about focus.   I am not arguing that we dismiss the possibility of a detached mind, but rather that we continue our current research until we have sufficient understanding of the brain to warrant speculation.

You think it does but cannot provide evidence for it.

Researching the brain to understand how it works is not speculative.   Again how do you propose to 'research' a disembodied mind?  

I don't know what  you consider to be the mind. 

Good point.   You may have an exotic definition of 'the mind'.    The mind, to me, is the ultimate reasoning and knowledge of an entity.   It is a logical concept (not physical).   It is akin to the behavior of software running on hardware.   The behavior is something that can be experienced (is real) but is not in itself tangible.  Applying this to the brain, the mind would be the net effect of the brain.    I might exclude autonomic systems from this though.

To illustrate what I mean, a hard drive and associated chips on the motherboard (not including the CPU) contains knowledge but I would not consider it to be mind. Although the analogy isn't perfect, I'd consider the mind to be the CPU. In this analogy, the mind (CPU) can access the hard drive and motherboard chips (the brain) in order to make decisions. 

I am not getting much from this analogy.  The CPU is deterministic, mechanical hardware.   It is a simple machine that is actually doing nothing more than interpreting a series of primitive commands stored as data.   Consider my analogy above and see if that better fits what you have in mind.

You believe that continued, materialistic examination of the brain will reveal that the mind is emergent from the brain, do you not? 

I expect this will be the case based on facts and reason.   'Believe' in a religious context carries the wrong semantics.

Since you have no actual evidence to present that shows the mind is generated by the brain, what would you call your belief that the brain generates the mind?

What?  Drakk, every brain function that science has identified to date is evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain.   Again, maybe you need to be more specific as to what you mean by 'the mind'.   Is vision part of the mind?   Is fear and danger processing part of the mind?   Is olfactory processing part of the mind?   Is geo-spatial awareness part of the mind?    on and on ...

I get this idea because, at this time, no one can point to anywhere in the brain that constitutes, is responsible for, the mind. 

(see above)   You really need to define 'the mind'.  That is the core of the problem.

How many times to you expect me to tell you where the bathroom is when you refuse to recognize that I've done so?

Here is an idea.   Instead of constantly telling me 'I already told you' how about you just humor me and connect the dots?   I will repeat what I wrote earlier:

Connect the dots Drakk.   Take an item of evidence presented in the video and show how that leads to an immaterial mind distinct from the brain more than a function of the brain that we do not yet fully understand.  ...  Don't keep telling me you already explained:  show me.   Connect the dots.  Lay it out.   List the evidence and show how that evidence leads to a disembodied mind more than to continued research on the brain.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.32  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.31    7 months ago
The point was to illustrate that neuroscience is not roaming about wondering how neuroplasticity, etc. is triggered by the brain.   There exists plenty of evidence (understanding) of brain chemistry; certainly enough to continue research on the brain rather than leap to an unknown, undefinable concept such as an immaterial mind.

Which would be a relevant point to make if this discussion was about the plasticity of the brain or whether or not brain study should  continue. Since I object to neither of those things I have to wonder what your point is. 

Recognize that neuroscience is using crude instruments such as probes and dyes...

C'mon, TiG. Do us both a favor and just admit that your objection to the video is not that it doesn't make sense but that it promotes the supernatural. That there is some component to being human that doesn't arise from the physical. That's really what you're talking about here. You're saying that if only we had more advanced procedures we'd be able to detect a physical mind. You insist on physical means going forward because you know (believe) the mind is physical. 

I would support this if there were credible evidence and there was actually something to investigate.

That's nice, but really, it doesn't require your support. I don't say that to be mean. I said I was entirely behind the kind of research you wish to continue because I think it will reveal the mind doesn't arise from the brain. Still, I wonder what you would consider credible evidence, given that, in my opinion, the mind doesn't arise from the physical? Since you are a materialist, what evidence could you ever possibly consider to be credible instead of thinking you just need more sophisticated and accurate tools? You indicate as much when you say...

Can you imagine setting up a laboratory to investigate a non-physical mind?    If you are not dealing with the physical brain in this lab then what exactly are you doing?   Better to continue researching the brain until there is a good reason to go elsewhere;  hopefully by then the 'elsewhere' is something that can actually be tested.

So, really, there isn't any scenario where you would support the idea of a non-physical mind. 

Further, you continue to speak as if I or the video has some objection to the study of the physical brain. Not sure why you continue to do this. I don't know how many times I can state that there is no objection to this. Maybe this is just another strawman?

(see above)

This does  not answer the question. There is no reason at all why any researcher of the brain can't conduct the study you wish to be conducted while keeping the idea that the mind might not be brain based. In fact, not doing so would endanger the researcher of conducting biased research, looking for what they want to find. That is, a researcher who conducts experiments to falsify the idea of a non-physical mind would be more valuable than a researcher that refuses to address the question at all. 

Well that is good to hear.  If you think agnostic atheists are threatened by the prospect of a god then you truly do not understand the agnostic atheist.

Why? Because all agnostic atheists are exactly the same? I think you should rethink your statement. 

The evidence does not lead to a mind distinct from the body.  If you disagree then show me why. 

I have and so did the video. But, even if I, or it, had not, why should I do so when you refuse to show why the evidence doesn't lead to a non-physical mind? The video presents its case but you do not provide evidence to the contrary beyond saying "we just don't know enough". 

Connect the dots Drakk.   Take an item of evidence presented in the video and show how that leads to an immaterial mind distinct from the brain more than a function of the brain that we do not yet fully understand.

Okay. 

When I said "no evidence" what I would expect you to provide is something along the lines of studies or whatever that shows or claims to show specifically how the mind arises from a physical process. For instance, we apparently understand how and where color information is stored  and processed within the brain. We also understand the same thing concerning shapes. How is it, though, that we can observe the brain processing these things but cannot observe the brain combining them in order to project the subjective experience of observing a green circle? Does it make sense to you that we can see the processing power of storing a color and a shape but not the processing power of combining them for the subjective experience, a process that presumably would require more processing power than simply processing the individual attributes and therefore should be easier to detect? As Penfield said, it seems to happen somewhere else. 

So, how about you disconnect the dots, TiG? How about you stop saying "connect the dots" when you do not one thing to provide the dots yourself? You still continue to say "nu uhh!" and nothing else. Instead of showing why the mind can't be non-physical you just insist we shouldn't even ask that question. 

But that isn't going to happen, is it? Know why? Because your rejection is already built into your question. You're just going to state "brain that we do not yet fully understand" and discard whatever I say. Nice. 

It is a natural assumption that studying the brain will reveal the mind.   It is unnatural to assume that the mind is not an emergent property of the brain.

… he said, from a materialist perspective.

That is why actual evidence of a non-physical mind is critical.

LOL. That's good, TiG. Evidence of a non-physical mind. What would evidence of something not physical look like? LOL

If the study of the brain achieves maturity and the mind remains a mystery then of course pursue other avenues.    

LOL. Other avenues. Not that the mind may not arise from the physical. Other avenues. You're killing me, TiG. 

That would be determined by the researchers.   I am confident that neuroscientists would be able to gauge when they have sufficient knowledge of the brain to determine that the 'mind' is simply not there (hypothetically).

Seriously? Do you even think about what you write before you write it? Have you not already determined yourself that we don't have sufficient knowledge of the brain to reject thinking that maybe the mind doesn't arise from the physical? Hasn't this been your argument all along? 

And, love the (hypothetical). In other words, even if researchers reach your undefined point of "sufficient knowledge" and determine the mind simply isn't in the brain, you're still not going to believe it. That, or you simply don't believe they'll reach that point. That's cool. You can believe whatever. Not dinging you for it. Just find it humorous. 

Mature understanding of the brain.

OMG. Stop. My stomach hurts from laughing!

Then connect the dots as I have requested repeatedly.

(sigh)

Realistically neuroscience will continue with the brain because a detached mind is untestable.  

True, more or less. That is, if the mind is not physical then it can't be directly tested. It can be tested indirectly by continuing the study you advocate and not finding the mind. A point that will never be reached in your mind, I'm guessing. 

I am talking about focus.   I am not arguing that we dismiss the possibility of a detached mind, but rather that we continue our current research until we have sufficient understanding of the brain to warrant speculation.

 For crying out loud, all testing is done on speculation. What do you think hypothesis is? "I think I observe A because..." and then they test to see if they're right. But, of course, that isn't the way you are using the word "speculation," is it? What you actually mean is some crazy wild ass guess without any reason to think it's true. 

Researching the brain to understand how it works is not speculative.   Again how do you propose to 'research' a disembodied mind? 

First, I never said brain research is speculative. Second, I never proposed we research "a disembodied mind". Third, I never said the mind was disembodied. In fact I, and the video, state that the mind, while not emergent from the brain, is dependent on the brain. Putting it in my own words, we cannot function in this reality without the brain and if we do not have the brain (i.e. it stops working) the mind ceases to exist in this reality. 

Good point.   You may have an exotic definition of 'the mind'.    The mind, to me, is the ultimate reasoning and knowledge of an entity.   It is a logical concept (not physical).   It is akin to the behavior of software running on hardware.   The behavior is something that can be experienced (is real) but is not in itself tangible.  Applying this to the brain, the mind would be the net effect of the brain.    I might exclude autonomic systems from this though.

Generally, I agree with what you've said here. The only place where I'd disagree is your stating "Applying this to the brain, the mind would be the net effect of the brain." To me, that suggests that the hardware produces the software rather than simply running it. 

And I would definitely exclude autonomous systems. They don't make conscious decisions in the manner we are speaking of. 

I expect this will be the case based on facts and reason.   'Believe' in a religious context carries the wrong semantics.

Love how you accuse me of word games.

What?  Drakk, every brain function that science has identified to date is evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain.

Well, it should be easy for you to provide evidence for this, then. How come you haven't done so yet and shortened the debate? All I've seen so far from what I've looked at is evidence of understanding how the brain stores  information, how it processes external input, etc. I haven't seen a thing about how the brain generates the mind beyond assuming that it does, we just don't know how. 

Is vision part of the mind?

In my opinion, no. That's hardware. 

Is fear and danger processing part of the mind? 

In my opinion, yes. 

Is olfactory processing part of the mind?

Depends on what you refer to. Simply registering a smell? No. Not part of the mind. What that smell makes you think of? Yes. 

Is geo-spatial awareness part of the mind? 

Possibly.

Apparently, what you are attempting to do here is equate what is essentially hardware with mind. For instance, light is constantly entering your vision receptors (eyes) and that is being recorded in your brain. Do you actually think this equates to mind? 

You really need to define 'the mind'.  That is the core of the problem.

Hmmm. Not an expert or authority on what constitutes mind, but I'll tell you my thoughts (which, really, is what mind is) on the subject. I'll begin with what is not mind. Autonomous functions are not mind. That's brain. The act of storing visual images, a sound, a touch, that's hardware and not mind. What I do with those images, sound, touch. That's mind. 

Here is an idea.   Instead of constantly telling me 'I already told you' how about you just humor me and connect the dots? 

Sure, for what good it will do.

When I said "no evidence" what I would expect you to provide is something along the lines of studies or whatever that shows or claims to show specifically how the mind arises from a physical process. For instance, we apparently understand how and where color information is stored  and processed within the brain. We also understand the same thing concerning shapes. How is it, though, that we can observe the brain processing these things but cannot observe the brain combining them in order to project the subjective experience of observing a green circle? Does it make sense to you that we can see the processing power of storing a color and a shape but not the processing power of combining them for the subjective experience, a process that presumably would require more processing power than simply processing the individual attributes and therefore should be easier to detect? As Penfield said, it seems to happen somewhere else.
 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.33  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.32    7 months ago
Which would be a relevant point to make if this discussion was about the plasticity of the brain or whether or not brain study should  continue. Since I object to neither of those things I have to wonder what your point is. 

Neuroplasticity is one of the evidences offered in the video that suggest an outside 'whatever' triggering fundamental changes in the brain.

C'mon, TiG. Do us both a favor and just admit that your objection to the video is not that it doesn't make sense but that it promotes the supernatural. 

I thought you had a better understanding of agnostic atheism; presuming that I reject something on 'irreligious' grounds (so to speak) pretty much shows I need to fill you in more on this topic (stay tuned).   

I have been stating specifically (not just waving my hand in protest) what I have found wrong in this video from my first post.   Promoting the supernatural would be interesting if in fact the promotion was based on actual evidence.   Leaps from scientific findings to 'it must be external' are not persuasive.    (Note:  'it could be external' is informal, ungrounded speculation.)   

I have been asking you to connect the dots to show how the stated evidence is indeed real evidence of an external mind.   You ignore the repeated request and claim you have already done so.   At this point, I take that as tacit admission that you cannot connect the dots.

So, really, there isn't any scenario where you would support the idea of a non-physical mind. 

If it cannot be evidenced why would anyone support it?    Because it sounds like a cool idea ... like the force in Star Wars?   Not a good reason for accepting something as true.   There probably is some way to evidence a non-physical mind much like the evidence for the Higgs Boson prior to discovery.   That evidence is precise physical behavior that matches a mathematical model of this non-physical mind.   We are no way near such a sophisticated mathematical model;  currently we are at the pure speculation stage:  what if the mind is not part of the body?   A bit rough right now.

Now if it were evidenced why would I object to it?   You seem to think that atheism = denial of anything supernatural.   If so, this is another point where you simply do not understand the mind of the atheist very well.   I have written this before and I think to you:   if an agnostic atheist observed persuasive evidence of a god, that atheist would instantly be a theist.   Unlike religion, we do not cling to atheism as something of value; it is simply a state of knowledge.   An atheist is not convinced that a god exists.   That simple definition is very potent and if taken seriously would help you better understand atheism (at least agnostic atheism).

Further, you continue to speak as if I or the video has some objection to the study of the physical brain.

Don't believe your own spin.

There is no reason at all why any researcher of the brain can't conduct the study you wish to be conducted while keeping the idea that the mind might not be brain based

Correct.   

Why? Because all agnostic atheists are exactly the same? 

No, because the concept of agnostic atheism has meaning.   It is not just a label.

What would evidence of something not physical look like? LOL

Very good question.   Clearly you understand part of the problem.   If you are sticking with science then one must deal with evidence, explanation, prediction, falsifiability, etc.    This is not a LOL joke, this is serious.   If you are proposing a religious method then do not pretend that you are speaking science to me.

Skipping over the parts where you are clearly not attempting to seriously engage me.  I am not going to continue wasting my time when you are not even trying to be serious.

Putting it in my own words, we cannot function in this reality without the brain and if we do not have the brain (i.e. it stops working) the mind ceases to exist in this reality. 

That correlates well with what I described.   The NT site, for example, correlates to the mind.   The user experience of NT (what you and I are using right now) does not actually exist anywhere.   It is pure illusion — the resulting effect of software directing hardware.  Ultimately this illusion is incredibly complex in detail.   And if the software or hardware fails, the illusion cannot exist.    However, the NT site is properly an emergent property of the underlying platform stack (all the software and hardware) and the recorded data.

Finally, note what you just wrote.   You recognize that the mind (in this reality, whatever that is supposed to mean) cannot exist without the brain.   So when the brain dies, the mind (in this reality ....) also dies.   So you must think that the mind exists not only in this reality but simultaneously in some 'other' reality.   Or is there some transition that takes place upon death where the mind of this reality spawns itself in some other reality and then dies in our reality?   I hope you understand that I am trying to point out how ridiculous this is.

Well, it should be easy for you to provide evidence for this, then.

It is incredibly easy.  It is obvious:

  • Every heart function that science has identified to date is evidence of a cardio system that is an emergent property of the heart
  • Ever immune function that science has identified to date is evidence of an immune system that is an emergent property of the body
  • Every brain function that science has identified to date is evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain

So now let's focus on the operative item.   If we identify a brain function dealing with cognition, such as immediate fear / danger response, does this suggest that our fear response is an emergent property of the brain?   If not, what does it suggest?   Do we leap into it being an emergent property of our liver?   Similarly, do we presume it is part of a non-physical mind?   Neuroscientists all recognize that the brain is the organ of cognition.   Why would anyone, without evidence to the contrary, hold that an identified brain function is not an emergent property of the brain?  

So now is the mind more than brain functionality?    Is the NT site more than an illusion produced by its underlying platform and data?    If so, you have an exotic definition¤  for the mind which you have yet to evidence.

¤  From your answers, I do understand that you consider the mind to be higher reasoning and you exclude motor function.   Note, by the way, that the fear / danger center is the amygdala (moderated in a complex manner by other lobes).   The amygdala is involved in a number of brain functions that you likely would consider to be the mind but it is quite definitely part of the brain and has been very well studied.

Apparently, what you are attempting to do here is equate what is essentially hardware with mind. For instance, light is constantly entering your vision receptors (eyes) and that is being recorded in your brain. Do you actually think this equates to mind? 

Actually I am illustrating how the mind seems to be an illusion generated by physical factors.

When I said "no evidence" what I would expect you to provide is something along the lines of studies or whatever that shows or claims to show specifically how the mind arises from a physical process. For instance, we apparently understand how and where color information is stored  and processed within the brain. We also understand the same thing concerning shapes. How is it, though, that we can observe the brain processing these things but cannot observe the brain combining them in order to project the subjective experience of observing a green circle? Does it make sense to you that we can see the processing power of storing a color and a shape but not the processing power of combining them for the subjective experience, a process that presumably would require more processing power than simply processing the individual attributes and therefore should be easier to detect? As Penfield said, it seems to happen somewhere else.

The above is what you consider connecting the dots.   This is to show how actual scientific evidence is indeed evidence of a mind that exists which performs cognitive functions that are beyond the capability of the brain.

Right? 

So they note that we have already identified where color information is processed.   And where shapes are processed.   But because science has not yet shown the exact spot(s) where color and shapes are integrated this you somehow think is evidence that these functions are somewhere other than in the brain.

Now, pause and take note:   

  • If you cannot show evidence of God, is that evidence that God does not exist? 
  • If you cannot evidence integration in the brain, is that evidence that integration is not taking place in the brain?

The above is illustrating the flaw in this reasoning.   There are plenty of cognitive functions that we can identify as real but cannot yet explain in terms of the physical brain.   Does the lack of knowledge of the brain mean that any observed cognitive function without a current explanation is evidence of a mind that solely performs these cognitive functions?

The answer is no, of course not.   That is ridiculous.

If this is what you thought was connecting the dots then you are indeed leaping to a conclusion sans supporting evidence.   When science cannot explain a cognitive function in terms of the brain the very best you could say is that it might not be an emergent property of the brain.   This lack of knowledge is not evidence of a mind that solely performs these functions.   It is simply unexplained phenomena.    

 
 
 
Drakkonis
3.3.34  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @3.3.33    7 months ago
Neuroplasticity is one of the evidences offered in the video that suggest an outside 'whatever' triggering fundamental changes in the brain.

Sort of. Neuroplasticity is  not a part of  the evidence, in and of itself. How change is made, is. The distinction matters.

I thought you had a better understanding of agnostic atheism

I do. It isn't an actual position as much as it is a defensive tactic. Agnosticism is not knowing whether or not God exists. Atheism is believing God doesn't exist. A person claims agnostic atheism in order to avoid having to prove that God doesn't exist, something that would be necessary for the atheist position to be valid. One can be agnostic and  one can be atheist but one cannot be both. 

I have been stating specifically (not just waving my hand in protest) what I have found wrong in this video from my first post.   

Nope. Let's look at what you said...

Other than implicitly defining the mind as something distinct from the physical brain, what impressed you about this video?   Neuroplasticity is extremely well known.   The fact that the brain reacts to its environment and internal biochemistry and reshapes itself is nothing new or strange.   And it does not mean that there is an external mind doing the reshaping.  The fact that one cannot induce decisions or higher complex cognitive functions by placing probes on the brain certainly does not mean those functions are beyond the brain.   The inability to understand complex cognitive functions such as assembling multi-sensory, multidimensional streams of information into a coherent whole reflects our lack of understanding of the brain;  leaping to the conclusion that this must be functionality of a distinct mind is akin to the 'God did it' conclusion.
This video is clearly trying to argue that the mind is something external to the physical body.   It does include genuine science but the science does not lead to the intended conclusion.   It mostly relies on 'if we do not understand a particular cognitive function then said function must be accomplished outside of the physical brain'.    The logic here is faulty;  probably because of the desire to argue an agenda rather than engage in scientific analysis.

First, you incorrectly identify the plasticity of the brain as the video's evidence for it's position rather than the manner in which that change is made. 

Second, you simply declare ...

And it does not mean that there is an external mind doing the reshaping.  The fact that one cannot induce decisions or higher complex cognitive functions by placing probes on the brain certainly does not mean those functions are beyond the brain.

...without any actual argument as to why you think this to be true except to declare,  again without support, that...

The inability to understand complex cognitive functions such as assembling multi-sensory, multidimensional streams of information into a coherent whole reflects our lack of understanding of the brain;

The video, on the other hand, does explain in detail, why the mind is separate from the brain. All you do is dismiss the argument with an unsubstantiated claim that "we just don't know enough." In other words, in spite of the evidence presented in the video, you will always claim there is more to learn about the brain as  long as the evidence doesn't lead where you want it to go. This is evidenced by your statement of,.,

leaping to the conclusion that this must be functionality of a distinct mind is akin to the 'God did it' conclusion.

There is no amount of evidence you would accept. This is because you are an atheist, Not agnostic or some bullshit term such as agnostic atheist. You will always claim " we just don't know enough." This is evidenced by the fact that you don't actually address the vid's argument, you just dismiss it with the claim that we just don't know enough about the brain. 

Third, you present opinion as if it were actual argument. 

It does include genuine science but the science does not lead to the intended conclusion.

Fine. Then present an argument, beyond simply claiming that we don't know enough yet, as to why it's wrong. Claiming we don't know enough translates as what we know currently doesn't fit what I want to be true.  As I have repeatedly asked, at what point do you think we'll "know enough" that you'd actually address this issue?

So, no, you haven't specifically addressed anything. Essentially, all you have ever done I say "nu uhhh!" Proof of this? Just look at what you say next,

Promoting the supernatural would be interesting if in fact the promotion was based on actual evidence.   Leaps from scientific findings to 'it must be external' are not persuasive.    (Note:  'it could be external' is informal, ungrounded speculation.)   

A totally bullshit statement. The vid is one long explanation and presentation of evidence. But you dismiss it without presenting any counter evidence whatsoever. It is as if you dismiss the Earth as a globe instead of flat because "we just don't know enough yet." The vid makes a claim, explains why it should be believed, and you call it "ungrounded". How the hell do you do that? The answer is, it doesn't reach the conclusion you desire, therefore it's "unfounded".

If it cannot be evidenced why would anyone support it?

(facepalm) Implying there is no evidence is disingenuous. It's a total lie. How about you counter what is said in the vid without using an ambiguous "get out of jail free" card of "we just don't know enough, yet" 

 There probably is some way to evidence a non-physical mind much like the evidence for the Higgs Boson prior to discovery. 

Translation. Unless there is a physical basis for the mind, I won't believe it. Totally fine. You have every right to believe what you do. What you do not have the right to do is claim that the mind is separate from the body is an unsubstantiated leap of whatever simply because you declare it is. Oh, sure, you can do that, but without evidence, it's just opinion.

That evidence is precise physical behavior that matches a mathematical model of this non-physical mind.   We are no way near such a sophisticated mathematical model;  currently we are at the pure speculation stage:  what if the mind is not part of the body?   A bit rough right now.

Great. Provide evidence that proves this is not more than opinion. Saying we are currently in the speculation stage is a blank check. Presumably, the study of the brain will only be mature when it says what you want it to say.

Now if it were evidenced why would I object to it?  

Because it doesn't lead to the conclusion you desire?

You seem to think that atheism = denial of anything supernatural.   If so, this is another point where you simply do not understand the mind of the atheist very well.   I have written this before and I think to you:   if an agnostic atheist observed persuasive evidence of a god, that atheist would instantly be a theist. 

There isn't any such thing as an agnostic atheist. One is either one or the other. One cannot be both, else the definitions lose their meaning. Claiming to be an agnostic atheist isn't a position, it's a defensive argument tactic. Those who make the claim do so becaust they think it frees them  from the burden of proof that God doesn't exist that atheism carries. 

Don't believe your own spin.

Strange. You say this and then, in the very next thing you say...

Correct....

Do you see what you've done? No? Let me show you.

Further, you continue to speak as if I or the video has some objection to the study of the physical brain.

You can only mean one of two things here when you say "Don't believe your own spin." Either you  haven't done as claimed but say this as a weak sort of defense or that you have but I haven't recognized your efforts. The first part is easily dealt with.

There exists plenty of evidence (understanding) of brain chemistry; certainly enough to continue research on the brain rather than leap to an unknown, undefinable concept such as an immaterial mind. Can you imagine setting up a laboratory to investigate a non-physical mind? If you are not dealing with the physical brain in this lab then what exactly are you doing?   Better to continue researching the brain until there is a good reason to go elsewhere;  hopefully by then the 'elsewhere' is something that can actually be tested.

This is from just one post. If I bothered, I could post even more. The significance of these quotes is that it shows you believe, that unlsess the mind can be shown to arise from the physical you won't address the question that it may not. And, because you believe this, you accuse both I and the vid that we have some sort of agenda to stop brain study. We don't. If you think otherwise, present evidence. You recognize this when you say "correct,' yet don't seem to recognize the incongruity. 

No, because the concept of agnostic atheism has meaning.   It is not just a label.

Nope. You're either one or the other. It is actually only a label that an atheist thinks shields them from the burden of proof in claiming there is no God. In other words. an atheist has to prove there is no God in order for his position to be valid. But put the word "agnostic" in front of "atheist" and the problem, they think, goes away. If one doesn't know or isn't convinced there is a God, but allows that God may exist, that makes one an agnostic. Period. 

Very good question.   Clearly you understand part of the problem.   If you are sticking with science then one must deal with evidence, explanation, prediction, falsifiability, etc.    This is not a LOL joke, this is serious.   If you are proposing a religious method then do not pretend that you are speaking science to me.

Let me help you out, here. I am not "sticking with science" in the sense that you mean. That would mean categorically rejecting anything that isn't materialist in nature as an explanation. Just as you have accused me of, that would be confirmation bias. That is, fitting the science to your bias. You believe the mind will be found within the physical. That's fine. Great. No problem. What is not fine, great or no problem is that you reject that the mind is something apart from the brain simply because you say so, in spite of the evidence. 

That correlates well with what I described.   The NT site, for example, correlates to the mind.   The user experience of NT (what you and I are using right now) does not actually exist anywhere.   It is pure illusion — the resulting effect of software directing hardware.  Ultimately this illusion is incredibly complex in detail.   And if the software or hardware fails, the illusion cannot exist.    However, the NT site is properly an emergent property of the underlying platform stack (all the software and hardware) and the recorded data.

Um, yeah, except it doesn't. No matter what happens to NT, it doesn't effect you, personally. You still exist, regardless. In other words, NT's existence isn't necessary for yours. It is only necessary for you and I to engage in the manner we do. Just like the physical brain. We can only engage in the reality we know by accessing it, experiencing it through the physical brain. That is, I am "speaking" to you because there exists a computer, a monitor, a modem, the internet and  so on. But none of those things are me. 

For your argument to be true, NT would cause my existence. It would determine who I am. This is so because you claim NT correlates with the mind. That is, I only exist because NT does. 

It is incredibly easy.  It is obvious:

  • Every heart function that science has identified to date is evidence of a cardio system that is an emergent property of the heart
  • Ever immune function that science has identified to date is evidence of an immune system that is an emergent property of the body
  • Every brain function that science has identified to date is evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain

(facepalm again)

Then, for goodness sake, TiG, post evidence that shows where the mind is generated in the brain and end this. I mean, if it is  "incredibly easy" that shouldn't be a problem, right? And, no, simply stating "Every brain function that science has identified to date is evidence that the mind is an emergent property of the brain" is not sufficient. Every brain function that science has identified to date has only showed the mechanics of how the brain does what it does. Store visual information, for example. Not one has showed how the mind arises from the brain. 

So now let's focus on the operative item.   If we identify a brain function dealing with cognition, such as immediate fear / danger response, does this suggest that our fear response is an emergent property of the brain?   If not, what does it suggest?   Do we leap into it being an emergent property of our liver?   Similarly, do we presume it is part of a non-physical mind?  

Stop! Please! My face is getting raw from all the facepalming!

If we identify a brain function dealing with cognition, such as immediate fear / danger response, does this suggest that our fear response is an emergent property of the brain?

Well, duh!!!! If we restrict this to simply that cognition is a product of the brain, of course it would. What the heck, TiG?

If not, what does it suggest?   Do we leap into it being an emergent property of our liver?   Similarly, do we presume it is part of a non-physical mind?

 Brilliant! First presume that the mind is emergent from the brain and then ask this. 

In spite of the stupidity of this, your accusation of presumption is false. To presume is to take for granted that something exists or is the case. That isn't what the vid does. It presents a hypothesis and then makes a case for it. 

Neuroscientists all recognize that the brain is the organ of cognition.   Why would anyone, without evidence to the contrary, hold that an identified brain function is not an emergent property of the brain?  

Untrue, in at least two different ways.

First, not all neuroscientists recognize that the mind is generated by the brain. 

Second, it is untrue that there is no evidence that mind is not emergent from the brain. Simply refusing to acknowledge the vid is insufficient. You need to provide counter evidence. 

So now is the mind more than brain functionality?    Is the NT site more than an illusion produced by its underlying platform and data?    If so, you have an exotic definition¤  for the mind which you have yet to evidence.

If it isn't clearly obvious by now, yes. The mind, which is the essential you, is more than brain functionality, in my opinion. As I have stated before, my opinion is that the brain is the interface between "me" and the physical world. It is what allows me to experience it.

Your own analogy supports this view. NT is not an emergent property of "underlying platform and data." It is, in fact, a creation of mind. Oh, yeah. I understand the problem with such a view. Your view is that because the mind arises from hardware, hardware, essentially, is responsible for NT. Fine. Provide evidence. 

The above is illustrating the flaw in this reasoning.   There are plenty of cognitive functions that we can identify as real but cannot yet explain in terms of the physical brain.   Does the lack of knowledge of the brain mean that any observed cognitive function without a current explanation is evidence of a mind that solely performs these cognitive functions?

Nope. Neither I or the vid says so. What we each do is state an explanation for the observed evidence. Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is demonstrate why it's not so. This message will self destruct in five seconds. (and yes, you should be hearing the "Mission Impossible" theme in your head at this moment)

The answer is no, of course not.   That is ridiculous.

Man! My face is getting so sore!

If this is what you thought was connecting the dots then you are indeed leaping to a conclusion sans supporting evidence.   When science cannot explain a cognitive function in terms of the brain the very best you could say is that it might not be an emergent property of the brain.   This lack of knowledge is not evidence of a mind that solely performs these functions.   It is simply unexplained phenomena.    

So, again, your refutation simply devolves to, "we don't know enough." Apparently, we will "know enough" when the science appears to say what you want it to. Got it. .

But, still, nice evasion. Really. Okay. I'm lying. Not a nice evasion. Totally bogus. I present, or rather, the vid did, the scientifically proven information that we know where color is stored in the brain and where shapes are stored but, apparently, we have no idea how the brain combines them in order to subjectively observe a green circle. 

Instead, rather than refute it with actual evidence,  what you do is state. without evidence, that considering that the mind is not an emergent property of the brain is a non-starter to begin with. Since you do so, please stop with the "connect the dots" thing. Nothing I say will do so in your mind. What you really mean is, "Think like I do". 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.3.35  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @3.3.34    7 months ago
How change is made, is. The distinction matters.

That is what I am referring to.   The initiators of neuroplasticity.   Obviously, I might add, given the context.

It isn't an actual position as much as it is a defensive tactic. 

I suspect your lack of understanding here is willful.  This is not a complicated thing to understand.

One can be agnostic and  one can be atheist but one cannot be both. 

Google agnostic atheism and do some reading.   It is pointless for me to waste my time writing when you stubbornly ignore and insist you know better when you are demonstrably wrong.  Maybe third party sources will get through to you.

First, you incorrectly identify the plasticity of the brain as the video's evidence for it's position rather than the manner in which that change is made. 

You have clearly resorted now to just making shit up.    


Drakk, I am not going to read the rest of your comment.   

It is obvious that yet again you resort to inventing claims.   As I told you the last time we had a debate, I no longer am willing to play this stupid game of rebutting your endless fantastic claims only to have you simply repeat them and invent new ones.  


Neuroscience explores the brain in part to understand how mental functions and retained knowledge (which we call the mind) are accomplished.    The science has resulted in an increased understanding of the brain but is far from mastery.   The neuroscience community deems itself to be in its early stages.  Not surprising either:  the average brain has ~90 billion neurons connected with ~100 trillion synapses.   Stay tuned, they have much work to do.

But they certainly know quite a bit about the brain.   For example, the fear / danger / ... center in the brain is the amygdala.   This is part of the brain that is known to manifest some of our many cognitive functions.   That is, there is hard evidence that cognitive fear / danger detection is an emergent property of the brain.   A rational individual might see this as an indication that the brain might indeed be responsible for all perceived mental functions.   Certainly the brain is where the research should be at the moment.

There are other observable mental functions that are not yet fully understood.   This is what one would expect.   Neuroscience cannot even begin to explain our feeling of consciousness for example.   

You seem to think that any cognitive function that cannot be currently explained in terms of the current understanding of the brain is evidence that said cognitive function might exist outside of the brain.   It might; but a lack of understanding is not evidence.    The inability to explain how the brain performs a cognitive function is not evidence that said function exists outside of the brain.

This you inexplicably refuse to accept.   

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4  Nerm_L    7 months ago

What does evidence have to do with anything?  Statistical outliers exist.  But statistics has developed a specialized methodology to dismiss and ignore statistical outliers.  The outliers provide direct evidence of the existence of possibilities that do not conform to probability.  And the nature of statistical outliers is that they do not follow a pattern or trend; explaining one outlier doesn't provide an explanation for all outliers.  The statistical methodology establishes a confirmation bias that favors probability and justifies dismissing and ignoring the evidence provided by statistical outliers.

Demanding evidence is one thing.  But a confirmation bias doesn't justify dismissing and ignoring evidence.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4    7 months ago

Sure, one statistical outlier is that you are a Boltzmann brain and that everything you perceive is simply the product of your imagination.   

Best to try one's best to believe that which is true (and that means using good evidence and reason) and avoid believing that which is not true (basically anything that one can imagine).

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.1  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1    7 months ago
Sure, one statistical outlier is that you are a Boltzmann brain and that everything you perceive is simply the product of your imagination.   

Is that explanation based upon evidence?  Does available evidence to support that explanation conform to probability?

Best to try one's best to believe that which is true (and that means using good evidence and reason) and avoid believing that which is not true (basically anything that one can imagine).

Outliers are good evidence; outliers just don't conform to probability or predictability.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.2  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.1    7 months ago
Is that explanation based upon evidence?  Does available evidence to support that explanation conform to probability?

Nerm, do you not accept the notion that the Boltzmann brain notion is wild speculation and thus a statistical outlier?    I intentionally picked a truly wild ass idea that clearly is an outlier and still you want to debate it.   

Outliers are good evidence; ...

What is that supposed to mean?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.3  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.2    7 months ago
Nerm, do you not accept the notion that the Boltzmann brain notion is wild speculation and thus a statistical outlier?    I intentionally picked a truly wild ass idea that clearly is an outlier and still you want to debate it.   

And I asked if that speculation was based on evidence.  The topic of the seed is about evidence of the existence of God.  So, doesn't all speculative examples need to satisfy that criteria?

What is that supposed to mean?

Outliers definitely exist; therefore, outliers are evidence.  My point is that confirmation biases also include dismissing and ignoring evidence.  The demand for evidence isn't as important as the seeded article implies.  Confirmation biases exert greater influence than does available evidence.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.4  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.3    7 months ago
My point is that confirmation biases also include dismissing and ignoring evidence.  The demand for evidence isn't as important as the seeded article implies.  Confirmation biases exert greater influence than does available evidence.

Evidence is critical to support the idea that something actually exists.   In this case we are talking about the grandest possible sentient entity (God) who is held to exist yet there is no evidence supporting this belief.

This is arguably the greatest claim one can make and it has been made (in many forms) for thousands of years yet with all the religious people throughout history who desperately wanted to substantiate the claim with sound evidence, none have been able to do so.

Imagine the difference between what we have now:  greatest possible claim and no evidence to that claim being supported by sound evidence.

 
 
 
Gordy327
4.1.5  author  Gordy327  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.4    7 months ago
In this case we are talking about the grandest possible sentient entity (God) who is held to exist yet there is no evidence supporting this belief.

I'll also apply that to lesser gods too. There is no evidence that any such God or gods exist. The best we have is evidence that people believe in God/s.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.6  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.4    7 months ago
Evidence is critical to support the idea that something actually exists.   In this case we are talking about the grandest possible sentient entity (God) who is held to exist yet there is no evidence supporting this belief.

This is arguably the greatest claim one can make and it has been made (in many forms) for thousands of years yet with all the religious people throughout history who desperately wanted to substantiate the claim with sound evidence, none have been able to do so.

Imagine the difference between what we have now:  greatest possible claim and no evidence to that claim being supported by sound evidence.

That is a demand for evidence of corporeal existence.  That demand is premised upon the idea that existence is a product of the corporeal universe.  There wasn't existence before the universe came into being.

Overcoming the corporeal limitation of existence requires defining existence as all that is.  But recognizing the existence of what is requires experiencing that existence in some manner.  Declaring that those who have experienced God in some manner as being merely irrational refutes defining existence as all that is.  A demand for corporeal evidence imposes a corporeal limitation on existence.

You can't have both ways.  People who have experienced God in some manner are evidence of what is; therefore, God definitely exists.  If the demand is for corporeal evidence then the universe emerged from nothing because existence is a product of the corporeal universe coming into being and God cannot exist.

Which is it?  Is existence defined is everything that is or is existence defined as corporeal presence in space and time?  Confirmation bias will determine whether or not God exists.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.7  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.6    7 months ago
There wasn't existence before the universe came into being.

What makes you think that the universe is the same as existence itself?   That logically would mean that something emerged from nothing which is impossible by definition of the word 'nothing'.

Declaring that those who have experienced God in some manner as being merely irrational refutes defining existence as all that is. 

I did not claim that those who believe they have experienced God are necessarily irrational.   The belief is unsupported by evidence.   It is thus wishful thinking or speculation to an observer until the person with the experience can offer evidence to the observer.

A demand for corporeal evidence imposes a corporeal limitation on existence.

If a human being has direct evidence of God then clearly a corporeal interaction has occurred.

You can't have both ways. 

Exactly my point jrSmiley_115_smiley_image.png .    You want to claim that people have relationships with God and also claim that these relationships can never be evidenced because they are 'supernatural'.   

People who have experienced God in some manner are evidence of what is; therefore, God definitely exists. 

So, by that reasoning, those who claim to be abducted by aliens are evidence of alien abductions?

If the demand is for corporeal evidence then the universe emerged from nothing because existence is a product of the corporeal universe coming into being and God cannot exist.

What?

Which is it?  Is existence defined is everything that is or is existence defined as corporeal presence in space and time?  

Existence is that which is.   That is how I defined it.  You have been trying to change my definition this entire post.

Confirmation bias will determine whether or not God exists.

What?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.8  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.7    7 months ago
Exactly my point .    You want to claim that people have relationships with God and also claim that these relationships can never be evidenced because they are 'supernatural'.   

No, that is incorrect.  The relationship with God is the evidence of what is.  Additional evidence isn't required unless existence is limited to a corporeal presence in space and time.  Existence outside of corporeal presence is supernatural.  

Existence is that which is.   That is how I defined it.  You have been trying to change my definition this entire post.

If existence is defined as everything that is then how can someone experience what is not?  Those who have experienced God are the evidence that God is; therefore, God exists.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.9  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.8    7 months ago
The relationship with God is the evidence of what is. 

What does that mean?   The claimed relationship is evidence of the claimed relationship??

Additional evidence isn't required unless existence is limited to a corporeal presence in space and time.  Existence outside of corporeal presence is supernatural.  

You appear to be arguing that evidence is not required to support a claim of having a relationship with a supernatural entity.   So I could simply claim to have a relationship with a magical creature in the 10th dimension and I bear no burden of evidence?

Your comments are making no sense to me.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.10  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.9    7 months ago
You appear to be arguing that evidence is not required to support a claim of having a relationship with a supernatural entity.

No, I am stating that experiencing God is the evidence of what is.  How can anyone experience what is not?  How can anyone have a relationship with what they do not experience?

Defining existence as everything that is cannot withstand a demand for corporeal evidence.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
4.1.11  sandy-2021492  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.10    7 months ago
How can anyone experience what is not?

Imagination.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
4.1.12  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.8    7 months ago
The relationship with God is the evidence of what is.

Evidence: noun - the available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid.

Your comment is no different than someone saying "The belief I was abducted by aliens is the evidence of my abduction". Sounds pretty ridiculous doesn't it.

A persons belief that they have a relationship with some unproven deity contains zero evidence and 100% feelings. "Evidence" is something that can indicate validity to others. Belief, faith and feelings are not evidence, yet that is all anyone actually has of their relationship with what they want to believe is a god.

"If existence is defined as everything that is then how can someone experience what is not?  Those who have experienced God are the evidence that God is; therefore, God exists."

"If being abducted by aliens is defined as someone being taken from the planet and probed by creatures not of this earth, then how can someone be abducted by what is not?  Those who believe they've been abducted are the evidence that aliens are real; therefore, aliens exist."

That's what your logic sounds like to anyone with more than half a brain.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.13  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.10    7 months ago
No, I am stating that experiencing God is the evidence of what is.  How can anyone experience what is not?  How can anyone have a relationship with what they do not experience?

Does a child's relationship with Santa Claus count as evidence that the relationship exists?   Is it then evidence that Santa Claus exists?

Defining existence as everything that is cannot withstand a demand for corporeal evidence.

Rephrase.

 
 
 
Gordy327
4.1.14  author  Gordy327  replied to  sandy-2021492 @4.1.11    7 months ago
Imagination.

Or drugs. Delusions. Psychological disorders such as hallucinations, ect..

 
 
 
JohnRussell
4.1.15  JohnRussell  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.6    7 months ago

Our existence is what human beings are capable of perceiving , what occupies our consciousness. 

This is also called nature. Is there anything "super" nature (beyond nature) ? I dont think we know the answer to that. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
4.1.16  JohnRussell  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1.5    7 months ago

"gods" are cultural expressions of human beings. 

If God exists, it would exist with or without the existence of human beings. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.17  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.16    7 months ago
"gods" are cultural expressions of human beings. 

I agree.   The evidence suggests that.

 
 
 
Gordy327
4.1.18  author  Gordy327  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.16    7 months ago
"gods" are cultural expressions of human beings. 

This much is certain. I even touched on that point in the article.

If God exists, it would exist with or without the existence of human beings. 

If you're talking about a separate entity, then yes. But that is also a big "if" and there is nothing to suggest it does.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.19  Nerm_L  replied to  sandy-2021492 @4.1.11    7 months ago
Imagination.

What distinguishes between imagination and revelation?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.20  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.12    7 months ago
Evidence: noun - the available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid.

Your comment is no different than someone saying "The belief I was abducted by aliens is the evidence of my abduction". Sounds pretty ridiculous doesn't it.

A persons belief that they have a relationship with some unproven deity contains zero evidence and 100% feelings. "Evidence" is something that can indicate validity to others. Belief, faith and feelings are not evidence, yet that is all anyone actually has of their relationship with what they want to believe is a god.

Except that's not what I am saying.  What I said is defining existence as everything that is requires that what is must be experienced in some manner to recognize existence.  Experiencing what is provides evidence.

We cannot recognize existence without experiencing that existence in some manner.  Broadening the meaning of existence also broadens the type of evidence that permits recognizing what exists.  Going back to my original comment @4, defining existence as everything that is includes the outliers.  Outliers exist; outliers are evidence of possibilities that do not conform to probability.  Using statistical methods to dismiss and ignore outliers doesn't not alter their existence.  The statistical confirmation bias favors probability.

"If being abducted by aliens is defined as someone being taken from the planet and probed by creatures not of this earth, then how can someone be abducted by what is not?  Those who believe they've been abducted are the evidence that aliens are real; therefore, aliens exist." That's what your logic sounds like to anyone with more than half a brain.

Defining existence as everything that is would allow that experiencing aliens in some manner is evidence that aliens exist.  

Lack of corporeal evidence would only indicate that the aliens are not corporeal.  But experiencing aliens in some manner would be evidence that aliens exist.

Defining existence as everything that is and then requiring corporeal evidence as proof of existence is a logical fallacy.

Which is it?  Is existence everything that is?  Or is existence a corporeal presence in space and time?  It's necessary to understand the meaning of existence before it is possible to determine what exists.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.21  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.13    7 months ago
Does a child's relationship with Santa Claus count as evidence that the relationship exists?   Is it then evidence that Santa Claus exists?

Lack of corporeal evidence only indicates that Santa Claus is not corporeal.  Defining existence as everything that is also means that lack of corporeal evidence does not refute the existence of Santa Claus.  Defining existence as everything that is would require more than corporeal evidence.

How existence is defined can also determine the existence of God.  Claiming that existence is everything that is while also claiming that lack of corporeal evidence refutes the existence of God would be an exercise in irrationality.

Which is it?  Is existence everything that is?  Or is existence a corporeal presence in space and time?  

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.22  Nerm_L  replied to  JohnRussell @4.1.16    7 months ago
"gods" are cultural expressions of human beings. 

That description may be incomplete.  A more complete description would be "gods" are cultural expressions of what human beings have experienced.  

People have experienced something.  And apparently that experience has been shared by a number of people.  An experience shared by a number of people constitutes a body of evidence.  A body of evidence becomes knowledge.

If God exists, it would exist with or without the existence of human beings. 

Which doesn't provide illumination for the question at hand.  Does science exist?  And would science exist without humans?

Science constitutes a body of evidence and that body of evidence is knowledge.  But does science exist as an independent entity or does science exist as a human construct?  Does the distinction between an independent entity and a human construct really change the existence of science?

 
 
 
Gordy327
4.1.23  author  Gordy327  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.22    7 months ago
A more complete description would be "gods" are cultural expressions of what human beings have experienced.  

Or that's what humans have claimed to experience.

People have experienced something.  And apparently that experience has been shared by a number of people.  An experience shared by a number of people constitutes a body of evidence.  A body of evidence becomes knowledge.

Such experiences are subjective and anecdotal, with many factors that might influence how or why they have such an "experience."

Does science exist?  

Science is just a process and body of knowledge humans have developed and acquired.

Science constitutes a body of evidence and that body of evidence is knowledge.  

Science accumulates evidence through the scientific method. The evidence establishes a degree of certainty and validity to a scientific idea.

But does science exist as an independent entity or does science exist as a human construct?

How can science be an independent entity?

How existence is defined can also determine the existence of God. 

That depends on how one defines god.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
4.1.24  sandy-2021492  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.19    7 months ago

Verifiable evidence.

 
 
 
katrix
4.1.25  katrix  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.22    7 months ago
People have experienced something.  And apparently that experience has been shared by a number of people.  An experience shared by a number of people constitutes a body of evidence.  A body of evidence becomes knowledge.

No, it becomes an anecdote. Think of all the people who claim they have seen evidence of the afterlife when they experienced a near-death situation. Yet science has now determined what really causes those - and it has nothing to do with them getting a glimpse of heaven or anything supernatural.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.26  Nerm_L  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1.23    7 months ago
Or that's what humans have claimed to experience.

Going back to my original comment @4, a single claim would be an outlier indicating a possibility.  But a number of claims would constitute a body of evidence that indicates a probability.  The larger the body of evidence, the greater the probability.

Science is just a process and body of knowledge humans have developed and acquired.

But does science exist?

Science accumulates evidence through the scientific method. The evidence establishes a degree of certainty and validity to a scientific idea.

The scientific method is nothing more than making observations and utilizing deductive logic to explain what has been observed.  Empirical testing (and refutation) of deduced explanations wasn't incorporated into the methodology before the 17th century.  The inclusion of empirical testing restricts the scientific method to corporeal existence.

The scientific method cannot explain everything that is; the scientific method only explains everything that is corporeal.

How can science be an independent entity?

Science is human observation and explanation of reality.  But is evidence and knowledge a result of that observation and explanation?  Or is evidence and knowledge an intrinsic property that establishes reality independent of observation and explanation?

Are humans creating knowledge or are humans harvesting knowledge?  Does the distinction between creating knowledge and harvesting knowledge alter the existence of knowledge?

That depends on how one defines god.

The many people, over many thousands of years and across many cultures, who have experienced God in some manner provides a large body of evidence that indicates there is God.

If existence is defined as everything that is then the large body of evidence indicates that God definitely exists.

If existence is defined by corporeal evidence then the lack of corporeal evidence indicates God does not exist.

Whether or not God exists depends upon how existence is defined.  However, the large body of evidence obtained over thousands of years and across many cultures indicates there is God.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.27  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.21    7 months ago
Lack of corporeal evidence only indicates that Santa Claus is not corporeal.  Defining existence as everything that is also means that lack of corporeal evidence does not refute the existence of Santa Claus.  Defining existence as everything that is would require more than corporeal evidence.

I asked: "Does a child's relationship with Santa Claus count as evidence that the relationship exists?   Is it then evidence that Santa Claus exists?".   The above is what you have posed as an 'answer'.   Do you not recognize that Santa Claus is defined as corporeal?    You deflected from the question.   Are you going to answer it?

Is existence everything that is? 

Yes.   Existence = all that exists = the opposite of nothing.    If there is a spiritual god then that spiritual (non-corporeal) god would exist.   No need to complicate a basic idea.   Oxford offers:  'All that exists.' as one of its usages.   I would go with that:  something either exists or it does not exist.   

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
4.1.28  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.20    7 months ago
We cannot recognize existence without experiencing that existence in some manner.

What our bio-electric brains are able to experience though our senses and corporeal body is the only existence anyone can reliably prove. Just because someone dreams they are a God, does that make one a God? Just because someone claims to have a personal experience of a God, does that prove they actually have come in contact with the divine?

"Using statistical methods to dismiss and ignore outliers doesn't not alter their existence."

True. So why do so many believers dismiss any possibility for existence other than their preferred "God" theory simply by claiming life originating on its own is a statistical impossibility?

"Lack of corporeal evidence would only indicate that the aliens are not corporeal.  But experiencing aliens in some manner would be evidence that aliens exist."

Lack of corporeal evidence indicates that aliens do not exist, not that they are incorporeal. While there is a possibility they exist and have abducted humans, the fact that there is no corporeal evidence and just peoples personal experiences makes it more probable that those experiences were internally generated, not externally. We know that human experience is flawed at best. We can't even trust eye witness testimony because the brain is a very tricky thing. You believe you saw something, and can believe wholeheartedly that it happened, yet the facts (and in criminal justice the DNA) may show it did not. Our brains lie to us all the time. I work in insurance and if I had a dollar for every time someone filing a claim said "And they came out of nowhere" I'd be a wealthy man. The fact is, the other vehicle they pulled out in front of didn't come out of nowhere, it was right there, their brain just lied to them because they didn't expect to see it and were likely distracted. But the resulting damage proves the vehicle was there.

This world has many things that can distort and change our memories and experiences, from drugs, alcohol, plants, mushrooms, even the air itself can effect our perception of reality. Go too high up a mountain and deprive your brain of oxygen or be exposed to some invisible gas or carbon monoxide and the brain can see and experience all sorts of things that aren't real. The brain wants to put the input from our senses into context and to do so it can even wipe our memories of horrific or painful experiences or lock them away in some recess of the brain.

Trusting our brains impression based on our senses and relying on it to claim incorporeal beings or some spirit realm exist is foolish. Belief in something doesn't make it true, no matter how much the brain wants it to be. Even the bible admits this when it says "The heart is more deceitful than anything else, and incurable--who can understand it?" - Jeremiah 17:9

The "heart" or human brain where the seat of our subconscious resides, will lie to us and tell us what we want to hear. If you want there to be a God who saves you and your loved ones, then your brain will lead you to that experience, you will find a faith and a God to fulfill your wish. It's why so many humans on this planet turn to some religion or another to find solace in this universe they desperately want to understand their place in. Each religion tells a different tale, and has a different God or gods, and most are contradictory of each other so they can't all be true. Yet the believers of each are so invested in their lie that they would sacrifice their own lives in defense of their version of reality. It's why so many wars and so many millions of humans have died throughout the centuries, one side saying they are right and their God gave them the land or assets they desire, and the other side making the same claim. Funny how their Gods all seem to want what their humans want. Money, power, land, all the things a universal creator would have no need for, yet their supposed followers proclaim their own desires are that of their deity thus justifying anything, even genocide, in their Gods name.

"Is existence everything that is?"

There is no evidence of any other existence, so this corporeal one is all we have unless someone can prove otherwise.

"It's necessary to understand the meaning of existence before it is possible to determine what exists"

Yet inventing your own meanings without evidence simply creates fantasy. You may enjoy living in your own fantasy, and that's fine, believe however you want. But don't bother claiming there is evidence of some incorporeal existence that changes our corporeal one unless you can actually provide some.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.29  Nerm_L  replied to  katrix @4.1.25    7 months ago
No, it becomes an anecdote. Think of all the people who claim they have seen evidence of the afterlife when they experienced a near-death situation. Yet science has now determined what really causes those - and it has nothing to do with them getting a glimpse of heaven or anything supernatural.

Science cannot explain an afterlife.  And the scientific method cannot declare an explanation valid without empirical testing.

If science had determined cause then science can replicate the experience under controlled conditions.  Without corporeal evidence, the explanations are more theological than scientific.

The difference between the theological method and the scientific method is controlled empirical testing.  Both methods make observations and develop explanations using deductive logic.  Theology doesn't utilize controlled empirical testing to validate explanations.

Theology is closer to Plato's or Aristotle's philosophical methodology depending upon reason and logical deduction without controlled empirical validation.  That shouldn't be surprising since theology is as old as philosophy and much older than science.

Science is the result of practical craft, once known as alchemy.  Alchemy depended upon empirical testing more than reason; the proof was the empirical result.  Alchemists conducted controlled tests and then attempted to explain the results.  But the empirical result was obviously corporeal which limited alchemy to corporeal existence.

Claiming that science explains a near death experience is little different than ancient alchemists explaining experimental results with the philosopher's stone (which typically consisted of mercury and its chemical compounds).  Science can only provide corporeal explanations for corporeal observations.  Science cannot explain everything that is; science can only explain everything that is corporeal.

 
 
 
katrix
4.1.30  katrix  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.29    7 months ago
Claiming that science explains a near death experience is little different than ancient alchemists explaining experimental results with the philosopher's stone

You've clearly never bothered to read the research, which doesn't surprise me. Logic and facts don't work on people who really want to believe in the supernatural.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.31  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @4.1.27    7 months ago
I asked: "Does a child's relationship with Santa Claus count as evidence that the relationship exists?   Is it then evidence that Santa Claus exists?".   The above is what you have posed as an 'answer'.   Do you not recognize that Santa Claus is defined as corporeal?    You deflected from the question.   Are you going to answer it?

It's not the relationship; it is the experience that is evidence.  By defining existence as everything that is; experiencing what is provides evidence of existence.

Coloring the experience with terms like imagination or delusion doesn't change the fact that the experience is real.  The experience is evidence that Santa Claus is real.  Claiming that accepting the reality of Santa Claus is a belief or faith doesn't alter that the reality of Santa Claus is based upon evidence.

But does Santa Claus exist?  Does whether or not Santa Claus exists change the reality of Santa Claus?  If the evidence of experience indicates Santa Claus is real then shouldn't that evidence allow us to accept the reality of Santa Claus?

We don't convince children that Santa Claus is fiction by calling their acceptance irrational.  We change their understanding of evidence.  We introduce corporeal requirements onto evidence.  We convince children that what they experience does not exist because what they experience is not corporeal.  We train our children that material existence defines reality.

And then, as our children grow, we expect them to think outside the box we used to confine their thinking.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.32  Nerm_L  replied to  katrix @4.1.30    7 months ago
You've clearly never bothered to read the research, which doesn't surprise me. Logic and facts don't work on people who really want to believe in the supernatural.

Logic and facts, alone, is religion.  Relying on only on logic and facts, as did Plato and Aristotle, is the basis for theology.

A science that depends upon observations and logical deduction, alone, is a religion.  Just because science does not accept the reality of God only means that science is a Godless religion.  There are examples of other Godless religions.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.33  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.28    7 months ago
What our bio-electric brains are able to experience though our senses and corporeal body is the only existence anyone can reliably prove. Just because someone dreams they are a God, does that make one a God? Just because someone claims to have a personal experience of a God, does that prove they actually have come in contact with the divine?

Yes.  The experience is real.  The experience is evidence.  Accepting the reality of what we experience is based upon evidence.

But does what we experience exist?  Does whether or not what we experience exist change the reality of what we experience?

True. So why do so many believers dismiss any possibility for existence other than their preferred "God" theory simply by claiming life originating on its own is a statistical impossibility?

Life, itself, is a statistical improbability yet life exists.  God is a statistical improbability so why does that refute the existence of God?  The only distinction between the statistical improbability of life and the statistical improbability of God is corporeal evidence. 

What happens if life is the corporeal evidence of God?  

Yet inventing your own meanings without evidence simply creates fantasy. You may enjoy living in your own fantasy, and that's fine, believe however you want. But don't bother claiming there is evidence of some incorporeal existence that changes our corporeal one unless you can actually provide some.

I am not inventing a meaning for existence.  What I've said is that the definition of existence determines whether or not God exists.

If existence is defined as everything that is then those who have experienced God provide evidence there is God and God exists.

If existence is defined by corporeal evidence than the lack of corporeal evidence indicates that God does not exist.

Does whether or not God exist change the reality of God?  Is the question of God's existence meaningful?

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.34  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.31    7 months ago

Nevermind.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
4.1.35  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.33    7 months ago
If existence is defined as everything that is then those who have experienced God provide evidence there is God and God exists.

By that reasoning, the tooth fairy, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and every creature ever imagined exist since someone thought of them and defined them in corporeal terms. Fat, white beard, red suit, all are corporeal definitions for an imaginary being. Just because someone imagines they interacted with a fantasy creature or God does not mean that fantasy creature or God exists.

If existence is defined by corporeal evidence than the lack of corporeal evidence indicates that God does not exist.

That is the only way we can define anything. All the fantasy creatures, even God, is defined in corporeal terms, white beard, male, definitions from our corporeal existence.

Does whether or not God exist change the reality of God?

Yes, if God exists then it definitely changes the "reality" of God. If it doesn't exist, then that too makes a huge impact on reality. People waiting around for their God to come save them will never be saved, they will die on their knees deep in prayer trying to communicate telepathically with a being that does not exist.

Is the question of God's existence meaningful?

Definitely. If God exists and we are all its creation, then our meaning and purpose is defined by it. If God does not exist, then we must find our own meaning and purpose in this life.

What happens if life is the corporeal evidence of God?

If life is the corporeal evidence, then there would be some calculable effect that could be attributed to that God. If there is no calculable effect but there is a God, then it would mean that God does not interact with its corporeal creation in any way. We can detect planets circling other stars now because we can measure the effects those planets have on the light escaping that star and reaching us. If some all powerful creator exists and interacts with its creation then there would be some evidence of that interaction. If there is not interaction then what's the point of believing or praying if doing so has no effect on this existence? If there is some effect on some other existence then its not one that we have any evidence of so why worry about some fantasy heaven, hell, purgatory, Valhalla or Nirvana? Why assume that you must act a certain way in this existence in order to get to or avoid some other unproven existence? It's like a shitty "Let's Make A Deal" gameshow where you have to bet all your Sundays for life to get whatever's behind door number 2, but you can't find out what's behind door number 2 till you die so no one living will ever know if there's a prize back there or not.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.36  TᵢG  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.35    7 months ago

( such patience )      jrSmiley_79_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Gordy327
4.1.37  author  Gordy327  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.26    7 months ago
But a number of claims would constitute a body of evidence that indicates a probability.  The larger the body of evidence, the greater the probability.

An argumentum ad populum. It's not the claim or the number of claims. It's how evidence backs up the claim.

But does science exist?

How do you define science?

The scientific method is nothing more than making observations and utilizing deductive logic to explain what has been observed.  Empirical testing (and refutation) of deduced explanations wasn't incorporated into the methodology before the 17th century.  

That's one reason to take findings and claims, especially those presented as fact, with a grain of salt.

The inclusion of empirical testing restricts the scientific method to corporeal existence.

When you have evidence of something outside of corporeal existence, then get back to me.

the scientific method only explains everything that is corporeal.

See previous statement.

The scientific method cannot explain everything that is;

The SM is the best means to explain anything.

But is evidence and knowledge a result of that observation and explanation?  Or is evidence and knowledge an intrinsic property that establishes reality independent of observation and explanation?

Evidence and knowledge is what is obtained from scientific inquiry.

Are humans creating knowledge or are humans harvesting knowledge?  Does the distinction between creating knowledge and harvesting knowledge alter the existence of knowledge?

It seems as if you're trying to dig too deep into something. While you may want to engage in philosophical debate, remember what Dr. Sigmund Freud once said: "Sometimes, a cigar is just a cigar,"

The many people, over many thousands of years and across many cultures, who have experienced God in some manner provides a large body of evidence that indicates there is God.

All subjective and anecdotal as well as another argumentum ad populum. It also doesn't address my statement of how god is defined.

If existence is defined as everything that is then the large body of evidence indicates that God definitely exists.

That's just an assumption god exists. There is nothing to indicate that being the case.

If existence is defined by corporeal evidence then the lack of corporeal evidence indicates God does not exist.

Another assumption: something outside corporeal.

Whether or not God exists depends upon how existence is defined.  

Or how god is defined.

However, the large body of evidence obtained over thousands of years and across many cultures indicates there is God.  

No, that's just evidence people believed there's a god. Not that there is actually a god. Big difference.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.38  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.35    7 months ago
By that reasoning, the tooth fairy, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and every creature ever imagined exist since someone thought of them and defined them in corporeal terms. Fat, white beard, red suit, all are corporeal definitions for an imaginary being. Just because someone imagines they interacted with a fantasy creature or God does not mean that fantasy creature or God exists.

Which deliberately confuses the act of creation with experiencing creation.  The claim is that Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and every creature ever imagined are creations.  Toddlers must be amazing since they exhibit such powers of creation.

Toddlers don't imagine reality.  Toddlers experience reality and draw conclusions based on the evidence of experience.  Toddlers utilize a pure form of logic that is untainted with knowledge.  Toddlers are presented with facts and deduce conclusions without the constraints of corporeal existence.

That is the only way we can define anything. All the fantasy creatures, even God, is defined in corporeal terms, white beard, male, definitions from our corporeal existence.

Defining existence with corporeal evidence explains why science is an unreliable tool.  Corporeal evidence is the box we use to constrain the logic of toddlers.  And the evidence is conditional upon circumstance.  There isn't universal evidence because we simply cannot observe everything that is.  Science cannot answer all questions.  So, science alters reality to fit into it's corporeal box.

Yes, if God exists then it definitely changes the "reality" of God. If it doesn't exist, then that too makes a huge impact on reality. People waiting around for their God to come save them will never be saved, they will die on their knees deep in prayer trying to communicate telepathically with a being that does not exist.

That conclusion requires that humans create their own reality; again deliberately confusing the act of creation with experiencing creation.  Reality doesn't change because of human explanations.  The only change is how humans experience reality.  Anthropocentric reality isn't any different than geocentric cosmology.  Humans placing Earth at the center of the universe did not change reality; just because Aristotle got it wrong hasn't established some sort of existential crisis of reality.

Definitely. If God exists and we are all its creation, then our meaning and purpose is defined by it. If God does not exist, then we must find our own meaning and purpose in this life.

If God is corporeal and we are God's creation then reality doesn't change.  If God is a fiction and we emerged in spite of statistical improbability then reality doesn't change.

Knowing how life began will not change reality.  That knowledge would prove nothing and refute nothing; reality wouldn't be changed by that knowledge.

If life is the corporeal evidence, then there would be some calculable effect that could be attributed to that God. If there is no calculable effect but there is a God, then it would mean that God does not interact with its corporeal creation in any way. We can detect planets circling other stars now because we can measure the effects those planets have on the light escaping that star and reaching us. If some all powerful creator exists and interacts with its creation then there would be some evidence of that interaction. If there is not interaction then what's the point of believing or praying if doing so has no effect on this existence? If there is some effect on some other existence then its not one that we have any evidence of so why worry about some fantasy heaven, hell, purgatory, Valhalla or Nirvana? Why assume that you must act a certain way in this existence in order to get to or avoid some other unproven existence? It's like a shitty "Let's Make A Deal" gameshow where you have to bet all your Sundays for life to get whatever's behind door number 2, but you can't find out what's behind door number 2 till you die so no one living will ever know if there's a prize back there or not.

Or we could accept the logical conclusion that there is Santa Claus and go on with our lives.  

Galileo wasn't imprisoned because he threatened the Church.  Galileo threatened Aristotelian science.  The Church had incorporated that science into its theology.  Galileo demonstrated that science is fallible and the Church is gullible.  Thousands of years before Galileo, stone age religious freaks had warned of the dangers of eating fruit from the tree of knowledge.  And the Church had not heeded that warning and used science to create its own reality.  

The fallible leading the gullible is not a good idea.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
4.1.39  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.38    7 months ago
The claim is that Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and every creature ever imaged are creations.  Toddlers must be amazing since they exhibit such powers of creation.

You can't really be that daft, toddlers do none of the "creation", that is done purely by adults who create the fantasies and carelessly force feed them to their trusting children.

Toddlers experience reality and draw conclusions based on the evidence of experience.

Toddlers experience the reality their parents and peers manufacture for them. It can take decades to rid themselves of the vile indoctrination of religious fantasy, and sadly most are never able to extricate such blatant fiction from their lives.

Toddlers utilize a pure form of logic that is untainted with knowledge.

Yeah no. Toddlers are forced to "utilize" whatever their parents and peers force feed them, there is zero "logic" involved.

Toddlers are presented with facts and deduce conclusions without the constraints of corporeal existence.

Ah yes, the "facts" of Santa Claus, the "facts" of the Easter Bunny. Do you even listen to yourself? What utter nonsense.

Defining existence with corporeal evidence explains why science is an unreliable tool.

That's one of the most moronic statements I've ever heard. Science is the only reliable evidence we have, everything else is supposition, fantasy and fiction.

Science cannot answer all questions.

Science has yet to answer all questions, there is no evidence that science "cannot" answer all questions.

That conclusion requires that humans create their own reality

More unadulterated bullshit. Humans are born into this reality, some just refuse to accept it by making up fantasies that self-aggrandize.

the Church is gullible

Finally, one thing we can agree on.

The fallible leading the gullible is not a good idea.

And yet that well describes every single religion on the planet. While science admits it doesn't know everything and is always willing to adopt a better understanding of our universe based on the evidence when it is discovered, religion claims infallibility until it gets pummeled into submission by facts, logic and reason, and even then it tries to claim victory when their fantasy doctrines clearly fail.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.40  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.39    7 months ago
You can't really be that daft, toddlers do none of the "creation", that is done purely by adults who create the fantasies and carelessly force feed them to their trusting children.

Resorting to insults only emphasizes intellectual incapacity to follow the facts with logic.  Protecting a confirmation bias with such emotional tactics provides no illumination or knowledge.

Logically the existence or non-existence of God will have no effect on reality.  The argument appears to be about exerting control over human interpretation of reality rather than attempting to understand human experience of reality.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.41  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.39    7 months ago
And yet that well describes every single religion on the planet. While science admits it doesn't know everything and is always willing to adopt a better understanding of our universe based on the evidence when it is discovered, religion claims infallibility until it gets pummeled into submission by facts, logic and reason, and even then it tries to claim victory when their fantasy doctrines clearly fail.

I can create a mathematical expression that follows the logic of mathematics.  The expression can be empirically tested to verify conformity with the logic of mathematics.  The expression will generate an interesting graph of data.

Y = (X/pi) + sin(X) - (log(X)/sin(X))

The question is how Y behaves when Y is described by the mathematical expression.  The mathematical description of Y is a fact supported by logic and reason.  Is the mathematical expression science? 

Is Y corporeal?  Does Y exist?  Does Y describe reality?  

What is the difference between mathematics and theology?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.42  Nerm_L  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.41    7 months ago
I can create a mathematical expression that follows the logic of mathematics.  The expression can be empirically tested to verify conformity with the logic of mathematics.  The expression will generate an interesting graph of data. Y = (X/pi) + sin(X) - (log(X)/sin(X))

Now let's use the mathematical expression to describe God.  The expression can be empirically tested to verify conformity with Biblical theology.

God = First cause + ethics - life(death, afterlife)

Is God corporeal?  Does God exist?  Does God describe reality?

Answering those questions will not change reality in any way.  Arguing about the existence of Y or God accomplishes nothing of importance.  

What is the difference between mathematics and theology?

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
4.1.43  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @4.1.42    7 months ago
What is the difference between mathematics and theology?

Mathematics: the abstract science of number, quantity, and space

Theology: the study of religious faith, practice, and experience

Listening to you talk in circles and pontificating about facts and reality when it's clear you have a grasp of neither has become tiresome. If patience was a four letter word, I'm all out of it to give. Please do go believe all you want, but like you claim, arguing with you about the existence of God is like a broken pencil, pointless. May you find the fantasy comfort you obviously seek. Personally, I'm fine not knowing our true origins till actual evidence is found and I trust science, exploration and discovery will be what eventually leads us to those answers, not some fat headed theologian talking out his ass.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
4.1.44  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1.43    7 months ago
Listening to you talk in circles and pontificating about facts and reality when it's clear you have a grasp of neither has become tiresome. If patience was a four letter word, I'm all out of it to give. Please do go believe all you want, but like you claim, arguing with you about the existence of God is like a broken pencil, pointless. May you find the fantasy comfort you obviously seek. Personally, I'm fine not knowing our true origins till actual evidence is found and I trust science, exploration and discovery will be what eventually leads us to those answers, not some fat headed theologian talking out his ass.

Claiming to listen and actually listening are two different things.

Yes, there aren't any demands for corporeal evidence to validate mathematics.  Mathematics is a self contained system of rules (and logic) that validates itself.  Testing conformity to the rules of mathematics provides the only evidence that is required.  Existence is not prerequisite for validating mathematics.

Corporeal evidence is required when mathematics is applied to corporeal existence.  Lack of corporeal evidence only refutes the application; mathematics is not refuted by lack of corporeal evidence.  

Theology is actually the abstract study of God.  Like mathematics, theology is a self contained system of rules (and logic) that validates itself.  Applying theology to corporeal existence results in religion, religious practices, and religious belief.  As with mathematics, lack of corporeal evidence refutes the application; lack of corporeal evidence does not refute theology.  Just keep in mind that the application of theology extends beyond corporeal existence.

It's possible to twist definitions and claim that theology is the study of God and religion.  But to be consistent, mathematics would need to be defined as the study of numbers (to be concise) and their application to corporeal existence.

 
 
 
Tacos!
5  Tacos!    7 months ago

This can only end badly - the way that these things always go around here. Is a different result expected? Isn't that the definition of insanity?

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.1  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @5    7 months ago

These debates are never about trying to convince the other side;  they are always about the dialectic process itself.

 
 
 
Tacos!
5.1.1  Tacos!  replied to  TᵢG @5.1    7 months ago
they are always about the dialectic process itself.

Isn't seeking the truth supposed to be the goal of dialectic? I never see that in these seeds. What I usually see is something along the lines of "your argument is invalid because I declare it to be so."

qMO2hsFJQx9RNrBhrHf0vCKqf-YAKz91uFITFLC9jtLrxiFEu8O5HI9Is1-Z-yAApX6SjENPiRCJ29ujvM9Nqbtwh_5k5xhuAapM-vq6JDmWUpWWvNe-XKX3g73E8m815JoGtNfNrFU3ga65AfKdXazKePfGkwVcfNw

 
 
 
Gordy327
5.1.2  author  Gordy327  replied to  Tacos! @5.1.1    7 months ago
 I never see that in these seeds. What I usually see is something along the lines of "your argument is invalid because I declare it to be so."

Nothing of the sort. The article is simply an objective and rational analysis of the concept of god/s, including the liklihood of their existence. Nothing has been declared "because I said so."

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.1.3  TᵢG  replied to  Tacos! @5.1.1    7 months ago
Isn't seeking the truth supposed to be the goal of dialectic? 

Yes!   The idea is to challenge ideas to tease out the truth.

I never see that in these seeds. What I usually