Follow-up: What atheists can't answer.

Venomfangx
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Follow-up: What atheists can't answer.

This is a follow-up to my first post here at "The Rational Response Squad". These unlike my former post are not my arguments. They are strong arguments presented by other theists like myself that presented good arguments that atheists have been unable to answer and attempt to deviate from the argument (Quoting one atheist who tried to counter the first.)

 

"Mr. Marshall suffers from the common creationist misapprehension that evolution is fundamentally a random process. It isn't. It is undirected, in the sense of not having long-term goals, but it is not random. The process of evolution proceeds through the interaction of random (with respect to fitness) mutations and natural selection. The latter is quite definitely a non-random process. Once again, evolution arises from the interaction of stochastic and non-stochastic processes, and is therefore not purely random.

Further, Marshall's claim that "noise always destroys the signal" is factually false, and he should know it given his field of expertise. There are circumstances in which adding stochastic noise to a system enhances the system's performance. See here, here, and here for examples. The latter is in a communication framework, by the way. More generally, I suggest Marshall look up "stochastic resonance" for more examples.

I suggest that Mr. Marshall acquaint himself with Evolutionary Computing. In any number of applications, random mutations coupled with selection generate distinctly non-random outcomes. My company uses evolutionary algorithms employing random mutations (a Mersenne twister generates them) and selection to produce very non-random adaptations of artificial agents that must operate successfully in a complex adaptive system out in the real world. If they didn't operate successfully I'd have some very unhappy clients."

 

The original argument was this:

"

Gentlemen:

The starting point of this discussion is my central thesis, which is:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.


If you can provide an empirical example of a code or language that occurs naturally, you've toppled my proof. All you need is one.

Perry Marshall

"

 

I would like to challenge everyone here to Perry Marshall's argument as well. I find it interesting how statistics reveal the majority of scientists to be atheists or have little religious faith and are portrayed as intellectuals when they never question this argument. Such as your assertions of blind faith in christianity, it takes blind faith in your conclusions.

 

Another argument was presented by Mr. Michael Gerson of the Washington Post. The link to it is here http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/12/AR2007071201620.html

 

One of my favorite paragraphs he wrote was this particularly:

 

"By the evidence of the New York Times bestseller list, God has recently been bathed in such tributes. An irreverent trinity -- Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins -- has sold a lot of books accusing theism of fostering hatred, repressing sexuality and mutilating children (Hitchens doesn't approve of male circumcision). Every miracle is a fraud. Every mystic is a madman. And this atheism is presented as a war of liberation against centuries of spiritual tyranny."

 

Again, these are not my arguments. I wanted to keep my arguments and arguments by others that atheists have been unable to refute seperate. My original arguments can be seen here: http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/15619

 


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Web Encryption, Hello

 Every time you pay for something on Amazon it uses a computer generated code so you don't get your credit card stolen. Are you saying modern computers have conscious minds.


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Can this guy get sent to

Can this guy get sent to trollville and have the asshat avatar?


tophermurphy
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Cut and Paste King

 He definitely deserves something for all the hard work cutting and pasting. Maybe we should get him a special pair of scissors and glue.


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Remains to be seen...

I see both my contenders refuse to answer anything to my post and one even insists I wrote this to provoke them. To my first response, no I did not imply computers have conscious minds. What are you trying to say?


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Quote:1) DNA is not merely a

Quote:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

This is not 'proof'. It's a non-sequitor.

You want an example of a naturally-occurring code or language? Well, how about - I dunno - language. Communication. I mean, unless you're still a YEC, you know that language slowly developed over time as a natural process.

One could also argue that gravity and quantum mechanics are, by and large, just systems of information transfer.

Quote:
"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
February 27, 1940


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Kevin's non-sequitor

We talking about a more complex language, known as "The language of life".  Language is the outcome of incessant rambling. Your other points are not worth refuting since you as predicted avoided my initial challenge. I once again present it. If you wish to dispute my previous arguments in this post please do so. But do not avoid this one.

If you can provide an empirical example of a code or language that occurs naturally, you've toppled my proof. All you need is one.

This time lets stick to science, not linguistics.

 


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I suppose DNA could be called a code or language...

 

...but it seems fairly obvious to me that this is an analogy, intended to convey the idea that information on "building" a lifeform is inherent in DNA.

 

But in order to be truly a language, in a literal fashion, DNA would have to be a medium of communication between two persons.  Let's entertain, for the moment, the notion that God designed DNA as just such a language.  We gain no knowledge (which, in this case, would literally be a revelation,) by "reading" DNA, except for the knowledge of the chemical basis for life.

 

Given:

   1. That this knowledge (the chemical basis for life) is wholly compatible with a

        Godless universe, and

 

   2. That God, if you will, did not see fit to tell us anything in the "language" of

        DNA,

 

...it seems logical to me to believe that DNA is not a literal language...

 

...but...

 

...the argument as given directly states and relies upon the idea that DNA is a literal language.  Thus, the argument does not prove the existence of God.  (Remember, I only entertained the notion of God's existence, and his creation of the "language" of DNA, purely for argument's sake.)

 

Now comes the part of this post that I am actually afraid to do...

 

Hamby...deludedgod...would you be so kind as to take a look at my response and critique it?  There's probably a lot I could stand to learn...

 

Conor

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"But it should!"--Me


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Ugh

 Computers generate code. Your number two contention is that you need a conscious mind to create code. Countless amounts of code is created each day by computer programs on secure web sites for encryption. Unless you think computers are conscious the argument you presented is false.


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Why do I get the impression

Why do I get the impression that venom is the understudy for Ray Comfort?


Venomfangx
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Two

To the poster before Ugh as well as Ugh:

 

You both seem quite confident in your answers about DNA does not need a god. So why is it so difficult to give me a natural example of the dna code occuring naturally?

 

To Ugh: Humans created computers and programmed them to perform operations. Therefore your argument also fails.

 

For those who think I am being stubborn I am not. Give me one example, I will research it, if it is legitimate then my argument will fail. I also have not receieved anything about the seperate argument from the Washington Post.


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Venom, the argument that you

Venom, the argument that you are trying to use is a non-sequitor. This is not just semantics or linguistics; your argument is fallacious.

P1: DNA is analagous to a code

P2: Codes are designed

C: DNA is designed

 

This does not follow. Some codes being designed does not mean that every code must be designed.

Quote:
"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
February 27, 1940


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One more time

When you have a secure connection with a web site using ssl (secure sockets layer). An encryption (code) is generated by an algorithm by your browser and the server your connected with. Messages sent back and forth are coded by one computer then decoded by another. No human creates the code, the software does.

 


tophermurphy
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PS my name is tophermurphy

 Venomfangx the top of the post is the subject, the poster's name is to the left. My name is tophermurphy the subject of my previous post is Ugh.


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But you're not responding to

But you're not responding to the argument, you're avoiding the question! Therefore, he wins! Score one, to Jesus!!

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Oh no, he's found us! the

Oh no, he's found us! the destroyer of worlds is here!.... GET TO THE SHIPS! ITS OUR ONLY CHANCE!!

 

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Venomfangx,As all

Venomfangx,

As all conciousness is natural (even your god's as he was created from the minds of men), any code created by man is a code that occurs naturally.

Sir, your reputation exceeds you.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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jcgadfly wrote:Sir, your

jcgadfly wrote:
Sir, your reputation exceeds you.

That's clever!  May I use that?


aiia
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 Venomfangx wrote:1) DNA is

 

Venomfangx wrote:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

If you can provide an empirical example of a code or language that occurs naturally, you've toppled my proof. All you need is one.

Perry Marshall

Several people have tried to explain the problem with this argument and you have ignored them.


This is clearly a fallacy of equivocation. The word 'code' in this argument has 2 distinct meanings.

DNA code is a system of regulation of cell behavior. There is no evidence it was created by a mind.
A code created by a conscious mind is a system of communication used to symbolize a message.

And by the way, there is a natural process known to science that creates DNA code. It is called sexual intercourse.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.


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totus_tuus wrote:jcgadfly

totus_tuus wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:
Sir, your reputation exceeds you.

That's clever!  May I use that?

Of course - I have no reputation so I'm safe from it being used against me. Smiling

 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Venomfangx wrote: This time

Venomfangx wrote:

 

This time lets stick to science, not linguistics.

 

linguistics is a science, jackass.  it's a field of study which uses the scientific method to construct theories about the origin and development of languages.

"I have never felt comfortable around people who talk about their feelings for Jesus, or any other deity for that matter, because they are usually none too bright. . . . Or maybe 'stupid' is a better way of saying it; but I have never seen much point in getting heavy with either stupid people or Jesus freaks, just as long as they don't bother me. In a world as weird and cruel as this one we have made for ourselves, I figure anybody who can find peace and personal happiness without ripping off somebody else deserves to be left alone. They will not inherit the earth, but then neither will I. . . . And I have learned to live, as it were, with the idea that I will never find peace and happiness, either. But as long as I know there's a pretty good chance I can get my hands on either one of them every once in a while, I do the best I can between high spots."
--Hunter S. Thompson


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Quote:1) DNA is not merely a

Quote:
1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.

This is very simple.  Others have explained it, but I'll say it again.  I will use superscript to designate two different meanings for the word "code."

Code1- A means of communication in which symbols are used as abstract signifiers for things.  A code is meaningless without at least two entities capable of understanding it.  That is, there is nothing intrinsic in a language code.  The symbols are arbitrary.

Code2- A bonded series of molecules that replicate with heredity due to the laws of physics and biochemistry.

English is a Code1.  Its letters, sounds, and rules are arbitrary.  English cannot do anything.  It is only a tool used by humans to do something.

DNA is a Code2.  Without the need for sentient beings, it goes about the natural process of doing what it does, which is replicate with heredity.  DNA does not stand for anything.  It is the replicator.  It is the moving force behind natural selection.

Where some people get confused is in thinking that the Code1 that people use to describe the Code2 is the same as the Code2.  It is most certainly not.  We use the symbols A, C, G, and T to represent purines and pyrimidines.  These two words are also language, of course.  The actual chemicals, A, C, G, and T (Adenine, Thymine, Guanine, and Cytosine) are bits of matter that have certain natural properties.  Without the need for symbols or Code1, they do exactly what they naturally do, which is bond in very specific patterns.  T and A form chemical bonds, as do G and C.  In much the same way that carbon molecules form diamonds anytime they encounter the correct set of environmental factors, so to do the chemicals in DNA form replicators with heredity when they encounter the correct set of environmental factors.

The point ought to be obvious.  The physical processes by which DNA replicates itself are just that -- physical processes.  They are not an arbitrary sequence of symbols which represent something else.  They are just what they are.  Humans have invented an arbitrary sequence of symbols which has subsequently been used to communicate concepts about DNA.  We use Code1 to talk about Code2.

It's not that hard, people.

Quote:
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.

All Code1's are created by conscious minds.  That is inherent in the definition of a Code1.  Because of the quirks of our particular Code1, some people have misunderstood the nature of Code2.  It is unfortunate that we don't have another word.  In fact, let's choose another word.  From now on, let's call DNA a "pattern."  Now, watch how this argument fails:

P: DNA is a pattern.

P: All codes are created by conscious minds.

Therefore: ????

You see?  This argument is fatally flawed since the terms in the syllogism are not properly distributed.

 

The notion of information storage can be dealt with easily as well.  Language (Code1) does not store anything.  It is just squiggles on paper or etchings in stone.  The information language conveys is dependent on the conscious organisms who use it.  No matter how long you allow a textbook about DNA to sit undisturbed, it will not create DNA.  It is just paper and ink.  No actual information exists until a conscious being deciphers the abstract squiggles of ink.

DNA, on the other hand, IS the information.  It need not be aware of its own information.  Obviously, it is not.  Information theory is something humans have invented with language to describe what happens in the natural universe.  If we knew nothing about DNA, it would still work.   This is obvious because it did work for millions of years before humans discovered it.

So... yeah... this has been beaten to death enough times. 

 

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Venomfangx wrote:1) DNA is

Venomfangx wrote:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.

This is an unsupported assertion, and begs the question. The use of "language" in this sentence is particularly egregious, and just plain stupid. DNA is not a language. The phrase "language of life" takes great poetic license.

Quote:

2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.

Incorrect unsupported assertion, and irrelevant, as it is based on the unsupported assertion 1).

Quote:

3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.


 

Conclusion was implicit in the unsupported assertion 1). That makes three logical fallacies in three statements. This is a trifecta of illogic.

 

Basically, this argument is a construct based on an improper application of an artificial concept: "code." A "code" is merely a representation of another thing. By the logic of the provided syllogism, hydrogen and oxygen contain the code for "water." The geological record is the information storage of bygone events. Quantum interaction is the language of atomic expression. Chemistry is the code, language,  and information storage for atomic and molecular interactions. Weather patterns are the language of the air. Hadrons, bosons, and leptons are encoded for all chemistry. And so on.

You have an argument based on a faulty analogy. This argument is a specific variation on the general argument that the universe is so complex, God must've done it. This general argument (and all specific derivatives) are argument from ignorance.

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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Quote:Basically, this

Quote:
Basically, this argument is a construct based on an improper application of an artificial concept: "code." A "code" is merely a representation of another thing. By the logic of the provided syllogism, hydrogen and oxygen contain the code for "water."

Sexy!

I like this argument very much.  It highlights the special pleading inherent in assuming that life is not a "natural process."  By assuming that life is somehow different than the formation of water or diamonds, it begs the question and creates a circular argument.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Even languages

Even languages "EVOLVE"...If god was so perfect, then why the need for so many different languages? Wouldn't your god want all of its children to be able to communicate with each other without the need of a translator?

 


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Quote:Even languages

Quote:
Even languages "EVOLVE"

Ack... I know you used scare quotes, but... ack...

The whole point here is that DNA and evolution are quite different in kind from languages.  There simply is no analogy to be made.  I don't see the point of throwing in another confusing word.  If anything, it may make a theist think he has a fall back position when he does not.

For the record, languages change over time, but they are not self replicating, and there is no such thing as a unit of language selection.  They don't evolve in the scientific sense.  Only replicators evolve, and only DNA and RNA are replicators on earth at this time.

 

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Sleestack wrote:Even

Sleestack wrote:

Even languages "EVOLVE"...If god was so perfect, then why the need for so many different languages? Wouldn't your god want all of its children to be able to communicate with each other without the need of a translator?

 

 

Don't you know? It was to stop the people thousands of years ago from constructing a BUILDING tall enough to reach past outer space and into heaven. Somehow the facts that construction techniques couldn't build a building more than a few stories back then, we haven't found heaven yet through space exploration and humans can't survive in space wasn't enough to stop them.

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There you go again Venom,

There you go again Venom, trying to construct an idol. The buddha like story jesus was against doing that, and had some harsh words for all such wrong thinking. He even called peter satan .... and how can we communicate if we don't use liguistics? The tower of babel ... wow, our clever ancient ancestors !!!


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The whole Tower of Babel

The whole Tower of Babel story is another one that shows how incredibly ignorant (at least by our standards) the writers of the Bible were. Surely if they were inspired by an omniscient god they wouldn't have told such an absurd story. God would have to know that there isn't sufficient oxygen to breathe at high altitudes, let alone in space and that the cold at high enough altitudes can also kill. They also had very poor knowledge of engineering and how language evolves, just for 2 more examples. Don't you think if the story was at all true an intelligent god could simply sit back and watch as they made an epic failure? God didn't do anything to stop early flight or space flight. We have sent space probes beyond the solar system and no evidence of heaven. Clearly, the Biblical authors believed that no matter what altitude you reached in the sky, the temperature and air presure didn't signifigantly change (this isn't the only story implying that. )

 

By the way, since God actually bothered doing anything to stop them, that means GOD actually thought they could accomplish this! Don't give me shit about teaching them humility, the natural results of attempting such a ridiculous thing would do thiat itself.

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Venomfangx wrote:This is a

Venomfangx wrote:

This is a follow-up to my first post here at "The Rational Response Squad". These unlike my former post are not my arguments.  

The former post wasn't your argument either, it was stolen from another site. 

http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/15619

 

 

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MattShizzle wrote:Can this

MattShizzle wrote:

Can this guy get sent to trollville and have the asshat avatar?

 

Nope.  I'm thrilled that he's here, stolen material and all.

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Yeah, I read it as early

Yeah, babel tower! I read it as early funny entertaining science fiction writing from our scientifically ignorant 'clever' ancestors. What bothers me is how all such writing was turned into religion and church dogma, sucked up by the masses as even this day. Geezz, we might as well say we still live in the dark age.

I often equate the inventors of Gods and such, as early sociologists. Rook has mentioned a distinction of intent between the early writings and the church and their relationship.


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What I am interested in

What I am interested in seeing is his rebuttal, I mean the argument has been refuted now, and answered by atheists....which his opening title has been shown false. Most likely I think he will  completely ignored of the entire response by hamby as most YEC or ID'rs or creationist completely ignore the facts, and the arguments that are presented when they try to prove evolution or science as false.


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Theists must be getting

Theists must be getting desperate, they are trying to lump atheism in with people like Captain Pinnaple.

Just because someone doesn't buy your old established myth, does not mean that we buy into new age naked assertions.

The universe is not a computer program, it is not a giant brain, it is not a invisable conciousness.

These theists have atheists confused with Star Trec fans who think Rodenberry invented the cell phone.

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Hambydammit wrote:Quote:Even

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
Even languages "EVOLVE"

Ack... I know you used scare quotes, but... ack...

The whole point here is that DNA and evolution are quite different in kind from languages.  There simply is no analogy to be made.  I don't see the point of throwing in another confusing word.  If anything, it may make a theist think he has a fall back position when he does not.

For the record, languages change over time, but they are not self replicating, and there is no such thing as a unit of language selection.  They don't evolve in the scientific sense.  Only replicators evolve, and only DNA and RNA are replicators on earth at this time.

The scary quotes + all caps was for drawing Mr. Fangs attention. I agree 100%, languages do not self replicate in the scientific sense. I was trying to point out that, in general, it's not just DNA that evolves, but, there are other things, maybe not so obvious to people, that evolve too and when you then attribute it to a grand designer, that designer makes some pretty stupid choices. I was definitely not trying to compare DNA to languages though. Sorry for the confusion.

 

 


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MattShizzle wrote:Don't you

MattShizzle wrote:

Don't you know? It was to stop the people thousands of years ago from constructing a BUILDING tall enough to reach past outer space and into heaven. Somehow the facts that construction techniques couldn't build a building more than a few stories back then, we haven't found heaven yet through space exploration and humans can't survive in space wasn't enough to stop them.

I did not know that. This god is weird. So, then could someone dig a hole deep enough to reach hell? Eye-wink


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The TOB story was OT, hell

The TOB story was OT, hell was NT. Still, that's actually closer to reality - you could conceivably dig down into the magma, which is sort of hellish - outer space doesn't resemble any story of heaven I ever heard.

 

Read my longer post again for the shock to set it. According to the Buybull, an all-knowing god somehow thought bronze age humans could accomplish reaching heaven by building a building tall enough to reach it. With this and other stories how fucking stupid must anyone be to actually believe the Bible is completely true and accurate?

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BobSpence
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Hamby and Nigel have refuted

Hamby and Nigel have refuted the DNA==Code thing pretty well, but I thought I throw in my take on it to further bury this nonsense.

I've explained this elsewhere recently, but here we go again:

Individual elements of the DNA code can change, or get copied more than once, or deleted  ('point mutations') thru transcription errors.

Same for entire sequences (genes).

Individuals can get extra copies of whole chromosomes.

All these processes have been observed and thoroughly documented.

So the raw material for all possible changes to the 'code' is being generated continually, every time there is a 'hiccup' in the copying of DNA.

Throw in the process of natural selection, the INEVITABLE weeding out of harmful changes, the improved survival of the occasional beneficial ones, and voila!, new code, with potential new functionality.

There is nothing in this process that violates any laws of physics or information theory.

Random or stochastic mutation followed by a non-random selection process is the basic algorithm for generating new information, even in the minds of human designers - think of 'brain-storming sessions'. Then there are genetic algorithms in computers, which do generate novel solutions to framed problems, by exploring the region of all possible combinations of code structure and parameter settings available to the program.

IOW this algorithm is the only known source of 'new information', as the idea is used here. The only difference when it happens in the mind of a conscious designer, is that both the random generation and the selection process are weighted towards desired outcomes, ie the selection process is based on what serves our purposes and desires, rather than just what will survive best under particular environmental conditions.

The rate at which errors occur has also evolved - perfectly accurate copying mechanisms would never evolve beyond their initial state, very error-prone ones would lead to too many mutations, which are mostly harmful. The need for some inaccuracy in replication to allow evolution to actually occur is one of the reasons we have things like cancer, which is a particularly harmful form of mutation. It's a trade-off.

EDIT:

To relate this more specifically to the OP, those assertions about 'codes', and 'language' are trying to turn the analogies between the patterns in DNA, which define a sequence of peptides making up a particular protein, and the sequence of letters in written text which we use to define a sequence of spoken syllables we understand as language, into 'proof' that the correspondence goes much deeper, without anything more than bare-faced assertion.

Describing it as a 'language' is way over-stretching the analogy.

It is a 'code' only in the sense that particular triplet sequences of bases on the DNA bind preferentially to particular amino acids, but this correspondence is not arbitrary in the sense of human designed codes, it follows NATURALLY from the nature of the forces of attraction and repulsion between sub-atomic particles, and how these combine to affect the nett attraction between different molecular structures. So it is not all that good an analogy when you dig deeper.

In a very real sense, every strand of DNA is "an empirical example of a code that occurs naturally", in the restricted metaphorical sense of 'code' as a natural correspondence between two different series of molecular structures.

In many cases we can provide evidence to how it has developed naturally by showing how the DNA sequences in related organisms show differences which make most sense as a series of changes in an evolutionary process. IOW we see strong evidence of naturally occurring changes, further reinforced by the recently described E Coli experiment showing evolutionary style changes in DNA. So we see new, functional, coded sequences arising NATURALLY.

 

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

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MattShizzle
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Sapient wrote:MattShizzle

Sapient wrote:

MattShizzle wrote:

Can this guy get sent to trollville and have the asshat avatar?

 

Nope.  I'm thrilled that he's here, stolen material and all.

 

Why because PWNing him is so easy, fun and entertaining?

Matt Shizzle has been banned from the Rational Response Squad website. This event shall provide an atmosphere more conducive to social growth. - Majority of the mod team


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Sleestack wrote:I did not

Sleestack wrote:

I did not know that. This god is weird. So, then could someone dig a hole deep enough to reach hell? Eye-wink

You didn't know about the Tower of Babel? Aw, this is religion at its finest. You should have heard of this story from Genesis.

My Bible, New International Version. (wish I had king james)

"Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. As men moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there.

They said to each other, "Come, let's make bricks and bake them thoroughly." They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the earth."

But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower that the men were building. The Lord said, "If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.

So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city. That is why it was called Babel - because there the Lord confused the language of the whole world. From there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth." Genesis 11:1-9

Let's play Spot the Fallacy! 

1) What points contradict science? One point each.

2) What points contradict history? One point each.

2) What points contradict an omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent God? Two points each.   

 

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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 I think he ran off. Maybe

 I think he ran off. Maybe he will start another thread.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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I hope so butter, this babel

I hope so butter, this babel domga stink needs be defeated for the kids. Come back all idol worshipers .... so we atheists can eradicate your stench.


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Semantics

Who says DNA is a "code or Language".  You or Mr. Marshall, even we as scientists are assigning a name or identity to a natural phenomenon.  I could call the structure of DNA Shazzzbat if i wanted to that does not mean that it was created by something supernatural.  You can interpret the lines on the beach as code(Shazzzbat) created by the ebb and flow of the surf.  The ocean is not cognisant. 

The only thing DNA was created by was it's parents.

Heathensrule!

I deny the existence of the Holy Spirit!


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Venomfangx wrote:This is a

Venomfangx wrote:

This is a follow-up to my first post here at "The Rational Response Squad". These unlike my former post are not my arguments. They are strong arguments presented by other theists like myself that presented good arguments that atheists have been unable to answer and attempt to deviate from the argument (Quoting one atheist who tried to counter the first.)

 

"Mr. Marshall suffers from the common creationist misapprehension that evolution is fundamentally a random process. It isn't. It is undirected, in the sense of not having long-term goals, but it is not random. The process of evolution proceeds through the interaction of random (with respect to fitness) mutations and natural selection. The latter is quite definitely a non-random process. Once again, evolution arises from the interaction of stochastic and non-stochastic processes, and is therefore not purely random.

Further, Marshall's claim that "noise always destroys the signal" is factually false, and he should know it given his field of expertise. There are circumstances in which adding stochastic noise to a system enhances the system's performance. See here, here, and here for examples. The latter is in a communication framework, by the way. More generally, I suggest Marshall look up "stochastic resonance" for more examples.

I suggest that Mr. Marshall acquaint himself with Evolutionary Computing. In any number of applications, random mutations coupled with selection generate distinctly non-random outcomes. My company uses evolutionary algorithms employing random mutations (a Mersenne twister generates them) and selection to produce very non-random adaptations of artificial agents that must operate successfully in a complex adaptive system out in the real world. If they didn't operate successfully I'd have some very unhappy clients."

 

The original argument was this:

"

Gentlemen:

The starting point of this discussion is my central thesis, which is:

Finally something concrete to comment on.

Venomfangx wrote:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.

So is a rock. What's your point? 


Venomfangx wrote:
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.

Pure bullshit. Every process that we use is natural, by definition. Therefore it is natural, and known.

Venomfangx wrote:

3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

Obviously not.

Venomfangx wrote:
If you can provide an empirical example of a code or language that occurs naturally, you've toppled my proof. All you need is one.

First you have to prove that DNA is more of a code or language than water. Good luck.

Venomfangx wrote:
I would like to challenge everyone here to Perry Marshall's argument as well. I find it interesting how statistics reveal the majority of scientists to be atheists or have little religious faith and are portrayed as intellectuals when they never question this argument.

There's no basis in your argument. It is nonsensical. It requires no response from the scientific community, who completely ignores ignorant savages who still believe the earth is flat, such as yourself.
 

Venomfangx wrote:
Such as your assertions of blind faith in christianity, it takes blind faith in your conclusions.

I'm afraid that you couldn't be more wrong. How about you explain why even the pope acknowledges evolution? Why YE Creationists number less than Wiccans and Scientologists?

 

Venomfangx wrote:

Another argument was presented by Mr. Michael Gerson of the Washington Post. The link to it is here

I'm not even going to bother. Editorials in a newspaper are the standard tactic of the ignorant.

Venomfangx wrote:
 

One of my favorite paragraphs he wrote was this particularly:

 

"By the evidence of the New York Times bestseller list, God has recently been bathed in such tributes. An irreverent trinity -- Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins -- has sold a lot of books accusing theism of fostering hatred, repressing sexuality and mutilating children (Hitchens doesn't approve of male circumcision). Every miracle is a fraud. Every mystic is a madman. And this atheism is presented as a war of liberation against centuries of spiritual tyranny."

All these things are true.

 

Venomfangx wrote:

Again, these are not my arguments. I wanted to keep my arguments and arguments by others that atheists have been unable to refute seperate. My original arguments can be seen here: http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/15619

 

Meh.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Obviously, his argument has

Obviously, his argument has been ripped to shreds, but I'll add yet another angle to his non-sequiter.

 

Quote:
1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

 

What is a mind?  There is no other method, besides by dna, evolution and material mechaisms that create minds.

 

So a mind self-designed itself?  How did this happen if it didn't exist without a designed code to think in patterns?

 

Quote:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

 

1)DNA is a code.

2)Only minds make codes

3)Therefore, DNA was made by minds

4)The Mind is a complex interlocking system of codes.

5)DNA creates minds

6)Therefore, minds were designed by ....Aliens.

 

Aliens have minds... they were designed by God.... God has a mind.... God was designed by Galacta... Galacta was born from the natural mechanisms of the Big Bang.

 

Therefore, the BB created god, minds and dna.  This means that "god" is not the god of definition and so doesn't exist.


 

 

If FuckinX can get his head out of his ass, and wipe away the tears from being pwned, maybe he'll answer?  He

Imagine the people who believe such things and who are not ashamed to ignore, totally, all the patient findings of thinking minds through all the centuries since the Bible was written. And it is these ignorant people, the most uneducated, the most unimaginative, the most unthinking among us, who would make themselves the guides and leaders of us all; who would force their feeble and childish beliefs on us; who would invade our schools and libraries and homes. I personally resent it bitterly.
Isaac Asimov


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Venomfangx wrote:blah bling

Venomfangx wrote:
blah bling blah I'm a vacuous cunt blah blah

 

 

Hey, fuckstick, did you already forget what happened when you tried this shit at the richarddawkins.net board a few months ago? Are you both a blithering moron AND a masochist?


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Venomfangx wrote:1) DNA is

Venomfangx wrote:

1) DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.
2) All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.
3) Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.


If you can provide an empirical example of a code or language that occurs naturally, you've toppled my proof. All you need is one.

Perry Marshall

Well, let's see: Marshall's assertion is that information storage systems, or 'codes', require conscious mind to create them.

A water molecule is an information storage system. The molecule stores, with real-time updates, the position and movement of each particle in all three atoms that form the molecule, as well as the general energy level (temperature) of the molecule and even tangential information about nearby molecules (though it might be as little as 'are they water molecules, too?' with regard to surface tension).

Every molecule of everything stores similar information in a similar, pretty much universally consistent format.

So, at this point, Marshall's assertion either falls apart, or is claimed to be proven as an 'ah-ha! you just demonstrated that God MUST have made everything!' when in fact, the burden of proof lies on Marshall for his assertion that all codes are created by conscious mind. Absent a means to prove that codes such as DNA and other molecules are creations of a conscious mind, he has only conjecture based on linguistic codes.

And the computer avenue's a bad one to pursue, since the parameter of the code generated by the computer are defined by the programmer initially, even if they're abstracted out to several degrees. Anything spawned by a work of artifice can be traced back to the artificer. Better to stick to nature.

"You've got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know... morons." - The Waco Kid


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Venomfangx wrote:This is a

Venomfangx wrote:

This is a follow-up to my first post...

This makes me chuckle


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hmmm

I guess he must be trying to find another website or author to plagerize from, since his questions have been answered....and he got his ass handed to him.....hmmm typical, this is the same venomfangx that deletes any comments that are against him on youtube right?


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A computer program's output

A computer program's output is determined by it's initial state, but you can't work back from the output state to a unique input state.

The space of possibilities explored by things like genetic algorithms of reasonable sophistication can easily be so vast that the outputs are as close to unpredictable in any practical sense that their output is in no way consciously determined by the programmer.

As the number and complexity of interactions, and the numerical precision of the parameters involved, increases, the distinction between a purely deterministic system and one with a fuzziness at the lowest level ( as seems to be the case in our universe thanks to quantum phenomena and the Planck limit ) becomes moot, at least at the top level, and for the vast bulk of interactions. Even that fuzziness can be simulated to any desired ( although finite ) degree of precision desired, thus approaching ever closer to matching the behaviour of the 'real' universe. Or we could include a 'true randomness' generator, based on something like the amplified thermal noise across a semiconductor junction, into the machine, and we have a genuinely non-deterministic, unpredictable system.

So don't put too much weight on making a distinction between computer simulations and the real Universe...

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

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Very true, Bob, but when

Very true, Bob, but when refuting the claims of 'there's a consciousness responsible!!!!', it's just better to avoid systems where, you know, there's a consciousness involved. Why give them the branch to cling to?

"You've got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know... morons." - The Waco Kid