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aghogday
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16 Mar 2015, 12:03 am

AspieOtaku wrote:
Is there any proof that god exists? If so then where is it? Why does he hide from humanity let alone not do anything about the horrible things going on in the world? If he did exist everything would be perfect and people wouldn't blow themselves up for false promises of 72 virgins in a make believe land known as heaven! Why do religious believers scowl at science and religion? Is it because it goes against their beliefs even though most of their findings are facts? I am pretty sure there is no proof a mythological being exists because its kinda hard to disprove something that doesn't exist in the first place so that loop hole has been corked right then and there!


There is no proof that anything exists, except your own mind. Everything you see, touch, eat, breathe, hear, smell, including your own body - all of it may be a hallucination, or a dream. Other than the existence of your own consciousness, anything you accept as true, is something you choose to believe.

That said, you need to specify to what "god" you are referring. There are and have been hundreds (at least) of deities worshiped by human beings, some local nature spirits, some said to be the lord of this or that natural phenomenon, some lauded as the one and only, gen-u-wine, original Creator-of-the-Universe. Even within a single religion, you will find different experts disagreeing on the qualities of their accepted divinity.

Since you reference Heaven and refer to this god as HE, I assume you're talking about Yahweh, the god of Abraham and the supposed progenitor of Jesus Christ. You talk about "Heaven" in the same way most Sunday School children and adult fundamentalists do, as though it were a physical PLACE, with pearly gates and streets of gold. That may be pablum fit for the dimwitted masses, but no serious, intelligent seeker after truth believes that. It's like autistic kids who take metaphors literally. To imagine that the creator of the universe lives in cloud city, sitting on a throne, growing a long white beard and watching for sinners to spank is just stupid, just as the extremists who believe that the same Creator of all Men wants them to murder their brothers and sisters for not belonging to the correct cult, and they'll be rewarded for this fratricide with 72 virgins. What they ought to ask is "Virgin what"?

If you want to understand what the concept of "God" actually means, you need to study Quantum Physics and String Theory - because all the mysteries unfolding in those fields of study today are the very things that the wisest and most insightful explorers of inner space have been telling us for centuries - but you can't begin to grok what they're telling you, until you start to grasp just what spacetime dimensionality really implies - until you wrap your head around the fact that all matter is vibrating energy and that the world you think you live in is just 4 dimensions out of at least ten and possibly an infinity.

Your five senses can only comprehend width, breadth, height and time. There may be entire universes full of life passing by at the tip of your nose, that you simply don't have the physical ability to perceive. 8O Could "God" or "gods" (or unicorns and fairies) be in one of them? Even more likely, could all those worlds (including this one) be inside of God? Are we characters in God's imagination? Is the multiverse a hologram, conscious unto itself? If God is pure conscious energy, maybe all the physical universes and the life forms in them are simply God's way of gaining experience and learning about itself, by engaging in role playing games.

Now, that said, let's turn to your questions about why God might sit by and allow bad things to happen. First, define "bad." If God is all, then both positive and negative, light and dark, good and evil, pleasure and pain - all of these are parts of God and yet, none of them are real, they are only conceptual constructs. You cannot perceive light without darkness as contrast. If you never felt sad, how would you know when you were happy? If you never experienced rain, why would you care about another sunny day?

Black and white are just opposite sides of the same circle. The world of experiences could not exist without both. Without the choice of good or evil, creation and destruction, we could not have free will - we would all be mindless puppets with only ONE course to follow. To be truly free, you have to have a choice, even if that means one of those choices is a negative one. Any creator who constantly interfered in our choices and forced us to go in a specific direction would not be a loving creator, but a dictator tyrant and we would be toys, not thinking, growing individuals.

I don't believe God "hides" from humanity, I think people often choose to be blind - look at the complexity of the universe we can see (and remember its only one of many), from the orbits of electrons, to living microbes, to visceral, breathing nature, to solar systems, galaxies, black holes and a universe so vast we can't even see the edges of it. As much as pessimistic materialists might like to insist that its all a cosmic accident and we're just bags of chemicals who wink out like a TV screen and disappear when we die, I don't believe that (and there's plenty of evidence to the contrary). I have had experiences that have shown me glimpses of what lies beyond the usually closed doors of our normal perception - and if you think this universe is a big place - you ain't seen nothin' yet.

The truth is, your brain is not the source of your consciousness - your brain is like a radio receiver, and the you that lives in this world is just a tiny fragment of the whole you (like the voice that comes through the microphone), a fragment that's being channeled through that brain and expressing itself as your current personality. When the body shuts down, the ego that goes by your current name may be discarded, that was just your character in the role playing game to begin with - but the totality of conscious energy that was operating the controller will still exist. This world is an amusement park ride and the first rule of admittance is: You must forget what you really are until the game ends, in order to fully commit to your character. As you work through the levels, you'll eventually figure out that its just a game, and begin to regain your memory. You may go through several character roles before you get that advanced.

Now, I don't expect you to believe any of that just because I said it. You owe it to yourself to seek your own answers. The truth is out there. Actually, its in there, but just start looking, you'll figure it out. Start by reading. A lot. And never assume you have ALL the answers, there's always more to learn. Mostly, avoid anyone who's so arrogant that they're absolutely sure they're right and nobody knows any more than they do - those people are always wrong, not to mention unpleasant to be around.

Hope that at least gave you a little insight into some of the things you were pondering and sets you off in a direction where some of your answers lie.


The Truth of the Matter is, GOD is way too big for most folks who are speaking in this thread to wrap around one hemisphere of the brain to the exclusion of the interpreting BRAIN, rather than a synergy WITH THE describing brain.

And yes, that's a loose metaphor still but IT 'describes' the general gist of the problem here, per 'hemispheral' limitations.

The only GOD that is recognized here is the Abrahamic GOD, OVERALL, and truly that puts folks square in the LIMITED AND RESTRICTED pot of STUFF THEY are criticizing as limited. AND TRULY, THAT'S amusingly ironic to me.

However, the TRUE LIMITATION, IS IN closed mindedness for whatever innate and or environmental mix that makes that happen in human being.

Even science shows now that 'half a mind' can be repressed by living in the devil of details rather than the bigger picture of 'Nature' and or 'GOD', including human flesh and blood, social cognition connecting ways.

To live as symbols rather than essence is a sad and limiting way to live.

I'm just happy I don't live in that OVERALL place of human misery and suffering anymore.

The escape is simply bliss.

And I see light in most of what you speak here; albeit not ALL provable by the scribe of science; but EVEN GOD IS MORE CREATIVE THAN THAT.

SCIENCE IS JUST the crumbs of life; such a starvation diet of fully living human life 'IT' IS.

And to be clear, what I mean in this context, is the systemizing mind used to the exclusion of the sensory, emotional, imaginative, and creative mind USED as a synergy OF MIND AND BODY BALANCE with reason; WITH reason as a relatively tiny part of the mind, AS a synergy of force of the 'Quantum' human mind unleashed and released, AS has been done by the 'fortunate ones' in all of recorded history, per MUCH DEEPER WAYS of perceiving and living life, AS A FREER HUMAN BEING LIVING WITH TRUTH AND LIGHT INSTEAD OF AGAINST IT, IN CYNICISM OF THE LIGHT, AND FEAR OF THE DARK, WHERE LIGHT CANNOT ESCAPE THE DARK.

Science does not usually manufacture wisdom, as true wisdom is beyond measurable phenomenon in a repeatable experiment.

Human emotion cannot even be repeated or measured, per each unique human being.

To go where no man has gone before, is, to truly be human.

To try to stay on the same page, is to attempt to be machine.

I'll stick with human and GO WITH GOD INSTEAD OF swimming up AGAINST the RIVER of GOD TO THE HIGHWAY TO LITERAL HUMAN HELL OF RESTRICTED HUMAN BODY, MIND, HEART, SOUL, SPIRIT AND BEYOND simply and COMPLEXLY out of balance.

And with that said, HERE IS A little song for 'AFFECT', OFTEN MISSING IN THIS 'AREA' OF LIFE.



And while I used to live life, as Another Ground Hog Day (aghogday), per literal sameness;

Now I'm on the happier side of 'THE HIGHWAY TO HELL', PER METAPHOR OF the REAL other place, AS HEAVEN NOW.

AND i AM 'BLISSED' with A title of 'MINDERELLA' AKA' MINdErElLa', so FAR beyond the mechanical cognition mind, am i, FOR NOW AT LEAST, AS again, Change is CONSTANT, NOW, THANK GOD..:)

http://katiemiafrederick.com/2015/03/14/minderella/

The human mind and body, more fully explored in balance, is A UNIVERSE UNTO ITSELF, AS A 'QUANTUM' mind and body IN BALANCE, FULLY RELEASED, UNLEASHED AND SET FREE the way IT CAN BE, BUT NEVER EVER, with a closed mind and body OUT OF BALANCE.

JUST my opinion, of course, per MY TRUE UNIVERSE OF EXPERIENCING LIFE, NOW..:)



Image



Life...

Stranger than fiction..

'cause it ain't gotta' make cents..

for a profit.. prophets don't need money..

to paraphrase.. the prophet.. Mark Twain..:)


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16 Mar 2015, 12:47 am

aghogday wrote:
The Truth of the Matter is, GOD is way too big for most folks who are speaking in this thread to wrap around one hemisphere of the brain to the exclusion of the interpreting BRAIN, rather than a synergy WITH THE describing brain.
And yes, that's a loose metaphor still but IT 'describes' the general gist of the problem here, per 'hemispheral' limitations.


Yes for all we know there may be a higher "lifeform" that created us after terra-forming earth.

However, the god of Abraham was was believed to have created the earth in 7 days according to a desert dwelling nomadic people thousands of years ago who (like everyone else at the time) tried to make sense of why we are here and what (if any) purpose was their in existence or in the world.

We know holy books purported to be written by god (i.e. Talmud, Torah, Bible, Quran) are full of man made crap because they make fairly obvious scientific mistakes that to a scientist are cringeworthy i.e. Plants are "made" on the third day of creation before there was a sun to drive their photosynthetic processes (1:14-19). 1:11

God makes two lights: "the greater light [the sun] to rule the day, and the lesser light [the moon] to rule the night." But the moon is not a light, but only reflects light from the sun. And why, if God made the moon to "rule the night", does it spend half of its time moving through the daytime sky? 1:16

All animals were originally herbivores. Tapeworms, vampire bats, mosquitoes, and barracudas -- all were strict vegetarians, as they were created by God. 1:30

In Genesis 1 the entire creation takes 6 days, but the universe is 13.7 billion years old, with new stars constantly being formed. 1:31

God fashions a woman out of one of Adam's ribs.
Because of this story, it was commonly believed (and sometimes it is still said today) that males have one less rib than females. When Vesalius showed in 1543 that the number of ribs was the same in males and females, it created a storm of controversy. 2:19

There are so many of these that it makes me cry why 63% of Americans "believe" in the literal meaning of the bible



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16 Mar 2015, 1:04 am

cyberdad wrote:
aghogday wrote:
The Truth of the Matter is, GOD is way too big for most folks who are speaking in this thread to wrap around one hemisphere of the brain to the exclusion of the interpreting BRAIN, rather than a synergy WITH THE describing brain.
And yes, that's a loose metaphor still but IT 'describes' the general gist of the problem here, per 'hemispheral' limitations.


Yes for all we know there may be a higher "lifeform" that created us after terra-forming earth.

However, the god of Abraham was was believed to have created the earth in 7 days according to a desert dwelling nomadic people thousands of years ago who (like everyone else at the time) tried to make sense of why we are here and what (if any) purpose was their in existence or in the world.

We know holy books purported to be written by god (i.e. Talmud, Torah, Bible, Quran) are full of man made crap because they make fairly obvious scientific mistakes that to a scientist are cringeworthy i.e. Plants are "made" on the third day of creation before there was a sun to drive their photosynthetic processes (1:14-19). 1:11

God makes two lights: "the greater light [the sun] to rule the day, and the lesser light [the moon] to rule the night." But the moon is not a light, but only reflects light from the sun. And why, if God made the moon to "rule the night", does it spend half of its time moving through the daytime sky? 1:16

All animals were originally herbivores. Tapeworms, vampire bats, mosquitoes, and barracudas -- all were strict vegetarians, as they were created by God. 1:30

In Genesis 1 the entire creation takes 6 days, but the universe is 13.7 billion years old, with new stars constantly being formed. 1:31

God fashions a woman out of one of Adam's ribs.
Because of this story, it was commonly believed (and sometimes it is still said today) that males have one less rib than females. When Vesalius showed in 1543 that the number of ribs was the same in males and females, it created a storm of controversy. 2:19

There are so many of these that it makes me cry why 63% of Americans "believe" in the literal meaning of the bible


Yes, and sadly enough some folks are still literally crying tears of blood over this human silliness OF ANCIENT ABRAHAMIC RELIGION AND THE tribal manufactured imaginary anthropomorphic GOD and or man, thereof.

If it wasn't so bloody, and such a source of truly imprisoning what the human spirit can be more fully set free in balance and synergy of 'Quantum' mind, per body, mind, heart, soul, spirit and beyond of all 'our' Nature given human nature, it could just be rib splitting funny.

But of course that goes back to Mark Twain and the FACT THAT HUMANS DON'T MAKE SENSE.

RELIGION IS PROOF OF THAT ALONE, and culture when restrictively practiced.

Funny how insane is sane and sane is insane, IN REAL LIFE, PER many SOCIAL/religious NORMS.

Overall, perhaps, some of 'us', are GOD's little jokes.

And WHO KNOWS, FOR now, perhaps that's the TRUE EFFECT AND/or lack of affect OF God prescribed KARMA.

NO one has proven GOD is fair; but alternately, beyond what can be literally measured, no one has proven the converse, either, of course, as science wears no cape, AND IS STRICTLY VANILLA.

And sense science is far far from FULLY measuring AND SCRIBING GOD aka Nature, science overall, is a 'wimp', instead of 'real star' of the POTENTIAL FOR FULLER experiencing HUMAN life..:)


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16 Mar 2015, 1:44 am

Aghogday, as has been pointed out before you say very little with a large number of words. Essentially your view of god is very simple. Take the natural world and claim it has sentience and dominion over us.


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16 Mar 2015, 2:06 am

sophisticated wrote:
DentArthurDent wrote:
sophisticated wrote:
God does exist, we know this because we wouldn't be here without him.


evidence please


You give me evidence of nothing turning itself into something then I will show you God himself.

It's up to the one making a claim, to provide evidence.
You claim our being here is proof of God.
You cannot prove a claim by deflecting the requirement for proof.

If I say my tongue is blue, it's up to me to poke it out and show you.


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16 Mar 2015, 2:29 am

Rho. For the last time the scientific method is not a law nor is a theory, it is simply a tool to help us enquire about the natural world.

We have had other methods of gaining knowledge, which have been cast aside for the opposite reason for why the paradigm of testing ideas against nature, verifying the results by constantly getting others to repeat the experiment and finally making predictions based upon the evidence has not been cast aside.

For instance we could still look to the bible as the font of all knowledge, if we were to do this we would never understand genetics, would be constantly bemused because we were never able to accurately determine the circumference of a circle, and would never work out why when we sent a projectile through the air it always describes a parabola. These are just a few of the inferences one can make using the bible to answer question about nature

Many good inventions and laws came out of Greece and the Arab world, for instance Pi as I have just eluded to. But we also have the issue of the concept of straight logic as the only source of knowledge, as smart they were, Aristotle and Epicurus concepts of gaining knowledge kept the natural philosophers from making any significant breakthroughs in our knowledge of the natural world for nearly 1,500 years. The Arabs made progress by bringing in the need for observation and testing, but unfortunately for the world Genghis Khan had other ideas and smashed the font of Islamic learning.

So after 1500 years of stagnation we come to Roger Bacon and then Sir Isaac Newton. It was these two who brought the concept of testing ideas against nature to life. And jsut look at the advances since then.

What you are essentially saying is that none of the advances made since the time of Newton are valid because to you the basis for their discovery is flawed, in fact you have pretty much explicitly stated this

AngelRho wrote:
If you can come up with some ad hoc "no verification required" while everything else, including my own beliefs, DO require verification and give science a free pass, it's only fair and equally intellectually (dis)honest (depending on how you look at it) that my faith get the same fair shake as science.


The Scientific Method is not a law, it is not the only way to discover after all guessing works as does blind chance, but is is a very successful tool, and for the last time, this is its verification, we discarded Aristotle, Epicurus, et al for the opposite reason their methods gave us very little. I have never said a tool does not have to prove its worth, of course it does and in this case it most certainly have. This of course does not mean a better tool will not come along, it does not mean that we are missing some evidence, but for now it is the best we have and it is doing a great job.

It seems to me that people like yourself will accept science as valid when it pleases you, you will drive a car get in a plane, use a computer and the internet, but as soon as it starts to show flaws in you ideological understanding of nature you refuse the basic tenet of modern science "follow the evidence where ever it leads"

And for the LAST time I do not assert that the scientific method requires NO Verification, that would be an example of faith, faith being defined as believing in something without evidence is plain dumb. Its success in bringing us this far in our knowledge, in such a short time after so long a stagnation without it, is the verification that it works.

Anyhow I am done with this, I have answered your questions repeatedly, I do not accept your assertions and to be perfectly honest I find that some of the things you have been saying to be particularity dishonest non more than this

AngelRho wrote:
I completely agree. I'm not anti-science. I'm not trying to steer the discussion into useless solipsism here. I don't have an issue with the method or the artifacts of it. I don't have a problem with accepting that the senses are sufficient for adequate perception.


Coming from someone who believes in Biblical creation as you do, I find the above a little hard to swallow


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16 Mar 2015, 2:33 am

AngelRho wrote:
DentArthurDent wrote:
utter nonsense. The scientific method is not logically flawed

Then by all means externally verify it WITHOUT using any kind of empirical observation. Demonstrate that science is pure reasoning and completely non-circular.

To anyone else "observing" this, note the inherent trap here. Dent is making the assertion--unsubstantiated, I might add--that the scientific method is not logically flawed. This presupposes a few things. For one, it's the baseless assumption that science is rational. Science in and of itself is NOT rational. Not in the sense that Dent is describing it, anyway. Science demands a standard of falsification.

Seriously, there are only maybe 2 true scientists on this forum. The rest of us do the best we can with what we know and the journey we've made. Only a true brain surgeon can tell you ALL of the ins and outs of brain surgery.

In the same way, there are few if any true theologians here. I studied theology for a year - it gives me a big step up from your average "Bible study" class, but it doesn't make me an expert.

The requirement for proof here in this forum is almost laughable. Have a conversation with a true scientist and you'll get lost in 5 seconds. I visit and ask questions at a forum called physicsforums, and my head hurts after just 5 minutes. Here's a sample: "Entropy has a precise definition. It is a constant times the logarithm of the number of microstates corresponding to a given macrostate." Is your head hurting yet?

Just like in any trade, people use jargon and shorthand that makes sense to anyone else in that trade. Now... if you think we're having some evidentiary discussions here about real science or true theology, I invite you all to think again and be a little more tolerant of where each of us truly is at, regardless of what we believe.

And let's all learn some critical thinking together: http://web.randi.org/home/new-ebook-mag ... -classroom

:mrgreen: :wink: :P


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16 Mar 2015, 3:37 am

Narrator the precise definition makes sense to me. But only because I have recently listened to close on 24 hours of lectures on the subject. Well actually this is not entirely true. I have listened to a 12 hour lecture (set of 24 half hour lectures) twice because the first time it did my head in :-)

Another site that will challenge your knowledge until your head hurts is www.rationalskepticism.org


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16 Mar 2015, 4:40 am

Ihave learned thatgetting things done myself has led to better results than praying and faith in a make believe god he has never done anything therefore he doesnt exist!The onlyothercop out like fort he many disasters and deaths of innocent people "oh god works in mysterious ways!."


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16 Mar 2015, 4:41 am

Narrator here is the tomb of the man who did your head in and above the bust is the very equation

Image

For those who do not know what this is referring to

Boltzmann's Constant


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16 Mar 2015, 5:16 am

Narrator wrote:
Seriously, there are only maybe 2 true scientists on this forum. The rest of us do the best we can with what we know and the journey we've made. Only a true brain surgeon can tell you ALL of the ins and outs of brain surgery. In the same way, there are few if any true theologians here. I studied theology for a year - it gives me a big step up from your average "Bible study" class, but it doesn't make me an expert.


I worked as a "true scientist" for a number of years. What exactly is your point?



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16 Mar 2015, 5:18 am

AspieOtaku wrote:
Ihave learned thatgetting things done myself has led to better results than praying and faith in a make believe god he has never done anything therefore he doesnt exist!The onlyothercop out like fort he many disasters and deaths of innocent people "oh god works in mysterious ways!."

Actually prayer has a placebo effect in relation to aiding mental/physical healing.



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16 Mar 2015, 5:26 am

DentArthurDent wrote:
Rho. For the last time the scientific method is not a law nor is a theory, it is simply a tool to help us enquire about the natural world.

OK…but this is just avoiding the issue. You're basically saying that science gets a free pass. Is the scientific method falsifiable or not? If it is, falsify it. If it is not, admit you're taking the scientific method on faith.

DentArthurDent wrote:
The Scientific Method is not a law,

Here it is again. You're basically saying that science gets a free pass. Is the scientific method falsifiable or not? If it is, falsify it. If it is not, admit you're taking the scientific method on faith.

DentArthurDent wrote:
it is not the only way to discover after all guessing works as does blind chance, but is is a very successful tool, and for the last time, this is its verification,

God is also very successful. This is God's verification. You are failing to demonstrate the logical superiority of one over the other.

DentArthurDent wrote:
And for the LAST time I do not assert that the scientific method requires NO Verification, that would be an example of faith,

Then verify it as requested. That is, verify it using a means other than itself. I'm waiting.

DentArthurDent wrote:
faith being defined as believing in something without evidence is plain dumb. Its success in bringing us this far in our knowledge, in such a short time after so long a stagnation without it, is the verification that it works.

"It works." God works. Why not believe in God as well?

DentArthurDent wrote:
Anyhow I am done with this, I have answered your questions repeatedly,

You've deflected my questions repeatedly, also. Moreover, you've been irrational about it. Your position is untenable. I don't blame you for wanting to get out of the discussion.



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16 Mar 2015, 5:39 am

AngelRho wrote:
God is also very successful

Not in the context of this discussion, so:
what has religion (not those within religion) ever done to further our knowledge of the natural world, and if you have examples, how can these be verified by; examples in nature, repetition of experiment and further predictions of what we should find if we go looking.

BTW you can continue claiming I have not answered or that I have avoided your questions all you like. I have answered them, I simply do not agree with your assumptions regarding those answers. Specifically I do not agree that I require no supporting evidence for the efficacy of the scientific method. I specifically disagree with your assertion that this tool of science requires empirical evidence of its voracity from outside the realm of scientific inquiry, and the specific reason for this is that it is a tool and not a law. The efficacy of any tool is determined by its ability to do the job required, the scientific method has clearly moved human knowledge forward and by this measure it has proven its efficacy. Period.


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Last edited by DentArthurDent on 16 Mar 2015, 5:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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16 Mar 2015, 5:44 am

cyberdad wrote:
Actually prayer has a placebo effect in relation to aiding mental/physical healing.


Could you please elaborate as the only large scale double blind study of prayer that I know of ended in abject failure for those who believe prayer can heal the sick. Are you saying that those who pray for themselves show a placebo effect?


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"Religion is the impotence of the human mind to deal with occurrences it cannot understand" Karl Marx


AngelRho
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16 Mar 2015, 6:12 am

Narrator wrote:
AngelRho wrote:
DentArthurDent wrote:
utter nonsense. The scientific method is not logically flawed

Then by all means externally verify it WITHOUT using any kind of empirical observation. Demonstrate that science is pure reasoning and completely non-circular.

To anyone else "observing" this, note the inherent trap here. Dent is making the assertion--unsubstantiated, I might add--that the scientific method is not logically flawed. This presupposes a few things. For one, it's the baseless assumption that science is rational. Science in and of itself is NOT rational. Not in the sense that Dent is describing it, anyway. Science demands a standard of falsification.

Seriously, there are only maybe 2 true scientists on this forum. The rest of us do the best we can with what we know and the journey we've made. Only a true brain surgeon can tell you ALL of the ins and outs of brain surgery.

In the same way, there are few if any true theologians here. I studied theology for a year - it gives me a big step up from your average "Bible study" class, but it doesn't make me an expert.

The requirement for proof here in this forum is almost laughable. Have a conversation with a true scientist and you'll get lost in 5 seconds. I visit and ask questions at a forum called physicsforums, and my head hurts after just 5 minutes. Here's a sample: "Entropy has a precise definition. It is a constant times the logarithm of the number of microstates corresponding to a given macrostate." Is your head hurting yet?

Just like in any trade, people use jargon and shorthand that makes sense to anyone else in that trade. Now... if you think we're having some evidentiary discussions here about real science or true theology, I invite you all to think again and be a little more tolerant of where each of us truly is at, regardless of what we believe.

And let's all learn some critical thinking together: http://web.randi.org/home/new-ebook-mag ... -classroom

:mrgreen: :wink: :P

Excellent point. I'm a musician. I've read tons of papers on modernist musical trends. It boils down to a bunch of math nerds making sounds, and the topics get so advanced that music theorists start inventing language to describe what's going on. I'm feeling a lot of pressure lately to just crank out some stuff, but in the mean time I'm plodding through Xenakis' "Formalized Music" text. For what it is, it's considered a basic treatise on stochastic music. However, to understand it well, you pretty much need a Ph.D. to begin with. I get it.

My understanding of philosophy is similarly simple, but I'm really only an amateur philosopher. It's a hobby. But in reality we all are philosophers because we have to deal with epistemological, theological, etc. kinds of issues every day. It's just that "real" philosophers do this consciously and invent labels for it so that we can have meaningful discussions on it in our quest for truth or wisdom.

The issue isn't whether science or faith are reliable. We already know that they are. The issue is one of rationality. The idea of empiricist verificationism is demonstrably wrong. It doesn't matter what the "scientist" says beyond this point. There has to be some kind of resolution of circularity if the scientific method is to be useful. Dent proposed one way. I'm not sure I find it satisfying, but that wasn't the point and I didn't feel the need to attack the rationale. Just the fact that there was a rationale at all was sufficient for me.

And that pretty much should have ended the discussion. Except…it didn't. Dent insisted on presenting the scientific method as non-circular and verifiable by virtue of the fact that "it just works" and proceeding to prove its verifiability by using observation, which is a key element of the scientific method. Dent is assuming what he is trying to prove. His position is untenable.

Beside the point, but "real" scientists aren't bothered by this issue. It doesn't change the nature of their jobs one bit. Maybe it IS circular reasoning and irrational. But so what? Most thinking and most arguments at their core are circular, too. They have jobs to do and don't feel the need to waste time justifying to anyone else how it is they do what they love. The scientific method is a tool, a means to an end, and nothing more. It is to them what functional harmony is to tonal music theory and what the Bible is for believers.

It seems this discussion is pretty much done for all practical purposes. Looks like my free time to indulge in it is about over, anyway.