Only Science?

jive turkey
Theist
jive turkey's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: 2007-05-14
User is offlineOffline
Only Science?

I sent the following as an email via the 'contact us' link on the RRS web site in response to the ground rules for the debate challenge. Specifically the rule that only scientific arguments could be used. I think the forum might be a better place for it.

 ------------------------------------

Why do you guys only deal with scientific arguments about the existence of
a deity?  Science isn't necessarily the best tool to use in all
circumstances.  Take beauty for example.  We know that we all perceive
beauty (and we mostly perceive the same things to be beautiful in nature)
but science does not do a thorough job of explaining it. (By thorough I
mean the same way science explains water freezing at 32 degrees.)

So, if there is no scientific evidence of a deity, what does that really
show?

Lets say you put an object inside a lead box and then I try to determine
the object in the box using X-rays.  I fail again and again.  Have I shown
that nothing is in the box or that x-rays aren't good for looking inside of
lead boxes?

--------------------------------

Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures smaller than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

So, if science is the study of the natural universe and god (if he exists) is a super-natural being, how can one catch him with such a net?

/peace


Maragon
Maragon's picture
Posts: 351
Joined: 2007-04-01
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey wrote: Why do

jive turkey wrote:

Why do you guys only deal with scientific arguments about the existence of
a deity?

Because science is impartial and not subject to personal feelings or beliefs, unlike people. 

 

Quote:
Science isn't necessarily the best tool to use in all
circumstances.

Can you think of a better one?

An un-biased tool that can help us assess the world around us? 

 

Quote:
Take beauty for example. We know that we all perceive
beauty (and we mostly perceive the same things to be beautiful in nature)
but science does not do a thorough job of explaining it. (By thorough I
mean the same way science explains water freezing at 32 degrees.)

 

This is an appeal to emotion. This is why we only accept scientific data for a deity. Our human emotions and perceptions can make it difficult to distinguidh between what is true and what we WANT to be true.

Beauty needs no definition, and is, in fact, impossible to define. It's a concept, and like god, it's different for everyone and it's all in your head. 

 

Quote:
So, if there is no scientific evidence of a deity, what does that really
show?

 

It shows that there's no scientific evidence for a deity.

 

Quote:
Lets say you put an object inside a lead box and then I try to determine
the object in the box using X-rays. I fail again and again. Have I shown
that nothing is in the box or that x-rays aren't good for looking inside of
lead boxes?

Begging the question. Science doesn't only use one kind of thought, one kind of method.

If x-ray didn't work, we'd try something else, we'd try everything that we have available to us.

You're straw manning the posistion simply because it's not turning out the way you want it to. 

--------------------------------

Quote:
Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures larger than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

So, if science is the study of the natural universe and god (if he exists) is a super-natural being, how can one catch him with such a net?/peace

 

Once again, you're assuming that science will only ever use one type of net, which is fallacious.

I know this is hard for you to accept, but the simple fact is that there is absolutely no intelligent reason to believe in something that is 'supernatural'. If something exists outside of space and time, is neither matter nor energy and does not- for all intents and purposes- EXIST in a tangible world, then what is the POINT of even arguing that it exists? I could say that a giant floating lamp made out of jello exists in the same sense....and you could NEVER EVER disprove it- but does not being able to disprove that lamp mean you should believe in it? 


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5486
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is onlineOnline
jive turkey wrote: Francis

jive turkey wrote:

Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures larger than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

 

I'm sorry, that's just hilarous!! Laughing


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5486
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is onlineOnline
Maragon wrote:   I know

Maragon wrote:

 

I know this is hard for you to accept, but the simple fact is that there is absolutely no intelligent reason to believe in something that is 'supernatural'. If something exists outside of space and time, is neither matter nor energy and does not- for all intents and purposes- EXIST in a tangible world, then what is the POINT of even arguing that it exists? I could say that a giant floating lamp made out of jello exists in the same sense....and you could NEVER EVER disprove it- but does not being able to disprove that lamp mean you should believe in it?

 

 

Does the multi-verse, particle strings, or other dimensions exist? Many physists believe so.


Maragon
Maragon's picture
Posts: 351
Joined: 2007-04-01
User is offlineOffline
Cpt_pineapple

Cpt_pineapple wrote:

Maragon wrote:

 

I know this is hard for you to accept, but the simple fact is that there is absolutely no intelligent reason to believe in something that is 'supernatural'. If something exists outside of space and time, is neither matter nor energy and does not- for all intents and purposes- EXIST in a tangible world, then what is the POINT of even arguing that it exists? I could say that a giant floating lamp made out of jello exists in the same sense....and you could NEVER EVER disprove it- but does not being able to disprove that lamp mean you should believe in it?

 

 

Does the multi-verse, particle strings, or other dimensions exist? Many physists believe so.

 

And they have tangible, practical, empirical evidence on which they base said beliefs. 


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5486
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is onlineOnline
Maragon

Maragon wrote:
Cpt_pineapple wrote:

 

Does the multi-verse, particle strings, or other dimensions exist? Many physists believe so.

 

And they have tangible, practical, empirical evidence on which they base said beliefs.

 

All they have is Einsien's equations. The equations involve complicated mathematics and a mistake is easily missable. Besides, in my infinite God topic, I present that anything is possible if we have infinite universes like a 'giant floating lamp made of jello'

 

I can see what the topic creator is saying. What is red? Is it about 700nm wavelength or is it so much more? Describe red to a blind person, tell them it's wavelength is 700nm, they'll understand.

 

edit:wave length of red light. Violet is in the 400nm range >_> 


jive turkey
Theist
jive turkey's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: 2007-05-14
User is offlineOffline
Thanks for the reply. BTW,

Thanks for the reply. BTW, I got a java error when attempting to quote so apologies….

*** = quote

***Beauty needs no definition, and is, in fact, impossible to define. It's a concept, and like god, it's different for everyone and it's all in your head. ***

I think I understand what you mean but that is partly my point. Beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose….all of these things fall into that category. Does that mean that these things don't truly exist outside the conception of our own minds? The implications of that seem rather menacing to me. No ultimate right or wrong, no limits on moral behavior (like genocide being a bad thing). Most of the things we think of as making us 'human' don't scientifically exist.

***
It shows that there's no scientific evidence for a deity. ***

I concede it that there is no direct scientific evidence for the existence god….but that does not lead me to the position of atheism.

*** Once again, you're assuming that science will only ever use one type of net, which is fallacious. ***

In this example science IS the net, each possible method one strand of one rope to extend the metaphor.

***I know this is hard for you to accept, but the simple fact is that there is absolutely no intelligent reason to believe in something that is 'supernatural'.***

This seems to depend on how one defines 'intelligent'. One might consider it intelligent to believe in a god in spite of the dearth of scientific evidence simply for the order it provides.

*** If something exists outside of space and time, is neither matter nor energy and does not- for all intents and purposes- EXIST in a tangible world, then what is the POINT of even arguing that it exists? I could say that a giant floating lamp made out of jello exists in the same sense....and you could NEVER EVER disprove it- but does not being able to disprove that lamp mean you should believe in it? ***

How true. I'm definitely NOT saying you should believe in god, I'm saying I do. That was my question to the RRS, "what is the POINT of even arguing that it (god) exists". No way to either prove or disprove. So why the 'challenge'? Bottom line is that science is forced to remain silent on the question of god.


serotonin_wraith
serotonin_wraith's picture
Posts: 119
Joined: 2007-03-10
User is offlineOffline
What about if science proved

What about if science proved evolution was a fact? Would that not disprove the idea that the Judeo-Christian god created all animals as we see them now?


Ghost of Amityville
Theist
Ghost of Amityville's picture
Posts: 57
Joined: 2007-05-13
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey wrote:

jive turkey wrote:

I sent the following as an email via the 'contact us' link on the RRS web site in response to the ground rules for the debate challenge. Specifically the rule that only scientific arguments could be used. I think the forum might be a better place for it.

------------------------------------

Why do you guys only deal with scientific arguments about the existence of
a deity? Science isn't necessarily the best tool to use in all
circumstances. Take beauty for example. We know that we all perceive
beauty (and we mostly perceive the same things to be beautiful in nature)
but science does not do a thorough job of explaining it. (By thorough I
mean the same way science explains water freezing at 32 degrees.)

So, if there is no scientific evidence of a deity, what does that really
show?

Lets say you put an object inside a lead box and then I try to determine
the object in the box using X-rays. I fail again and again. Have I shown
that nothing is in the box or that x-rays aren't good for looking inside of
lead boxes?

--------------------------------

Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures larger than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

So, if science is the study of the natural universe and god (if he exists) is a super-natural being, how can one catch him with such a net?

/peace

 

This is all getting into what reality and existence are, which is the subject of metaphysics. I agree that it's questionable as to whether a scientific basis of reality is the absolutely No. 1 best way of defining reality. That's just in the same way as questioning whether "technically" is the best way of living one's life. Sometimes, doing things technically is irrational.

I take pride in being a newb. I'm not all experienced and boring like the normies.


Ghost of Amityville
Theist
Ghost of Amityville's picture
Posts: 57
Joined: 2007-05-13
User is offlineOffline
Maragon wrote:

Maragon wrote:

I know this is hard for you to accept, but the simple fact is that there is absolutely no intelligent reason to believe in something that is 'supernatural'. If something exists outside of space and time, is neither matter nor energy and does not- for all intents and purposes- EXIST in a tangible world, then what is the POINT of even arguing that it exists? I could say that a giant floating lamp made out of jello exists in the same sense....and you could NEVER EVER disprove it- but does not being able to disprove that lamp mean you should believe in it?

A better question would be: is a giant floating lamp made out of jello or a giant orbiting teapot worth believing in when compared to a theistic concept of God? The answer is no since said lamp or teapot doesn't appear to have the qualities of being a fulfillment of all things positive like theism's God does. So, the fact that one can't disprove a lamp or teapot is not the standard by which one should determine whether one should believe in it or not. Rather, the standard by which one should determine whether to believe in it or not is whether the existence of something is going to have a major, positive consequence like theism's God does.

I take pride in being a newb. I'm not all experienced and boring like the normies.


The Patrician
The Patrician's picture
Posts: 474
Joined: 2007-05-09
User is offlineOffline
Ghost of Amityville

Ghost of Amityville wrote:
A better question would be: is a giant floating lamp made out of jello or a giant orbiting teapot worth believing in when compared to a theistic concept of God? The answer is no since said lamp or teapot doesn't appear to have the qualities of being a fulfillment of all things positive like theism's God does. So, the fact that one can't disprove a lamp or teapot is not the standard by which one should determine whether one should believe in it or not. Rather, the standard by which one should determine whether to believe in it or not is whether the existence of something is going to have a major, positive consequence like theism's God does.

 I make sure not to offend the teapot and so far I haven't been drowned in a shower of lukewarm Earl Grey.  That works for me.

Freedom of religious belief is an inalienable right. Stuffing that belief down other people's throats is not.


Ghost of Amityville
Theist
Ghost of Amityville's picture
Posts: 57
Joined: 2007-05-13
User is offlineOffline
The Patrician wrote: Ghost

The Patrician wrote:

Ghost of Amityville wrote:
A better question would be: is a giant floating lamp made out of jello or a giant orbiting teapot worth believing in when compared to a theistic concept of God? The answer is no since said lamp or teapot doesn't appear to have the qualities of being a fulfillment of all things positive like theism's God does. So, the fact that one can't disprove a lamp or teapot is not the standard by which one should determine whether one should believe in it or not. Rather, the standard by which one should determine whether to believe in it or not is whether the existence of something is going to have a major, positive consequence like theism's God does.

I make sure not to offend the teapot and so far I haven't been drowned in a shower of lukewarm Earl Grey. That works for me.

From what I've heard, I'm sure the teapot wouldn't drown you nor harm you in any way, even if you did offend it. I hear good things about the teapot, you see, and it seems like a nice teapot.

I take pride in being a newb. I'm not all experienced and boring like the normies.


pariahjane
pariahjane's picture
Posts: 1595
Joined: 2006-05-06
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey

jive turkey wrote:

***Beauty needs no definition, and is, in fact, impossible to define. It's a concept, and like god, it's different for everyone and it's all in your head. ***

I think I understand what you mean but that is partly my point. Beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose….all of these things fall into that category. Does that mean that these things don't truly exist outside the conception of our own minds? The implications of that seem rather menacing to me. No ultimate right or wrong, no limits on moral behavior (like genocide being a bad thing). Most of the things we think of as making us 'human' don't scientifically exist.

These are all subjective.  What one culture find beautiful may be ugly or disgusting to another culture.  As an example, there are the women who wear multiple hoops around their necks to stretch them.  This is considered beautiful to them.  In America, it would not be considered beautiful. 

While I say that morality and altruism is intrinsic in human behavior, there are cultural differences as well.  Think about the 'morality' of the middle east.  Women are thrown into prison for leaving their homes without a male escort.  Those women are conisdered immoral.  Now just think of how American women act and dress.  Even a very conservatively dressed American woman would be considered immoral in the middle east.

If god takes life he's an indian giver


aiia
Superfan
aiia's picture
Posts: 1923
Joined: 2006-09-12
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey wrote:

jive turkey wrote:
Why do you guys only deal with scientific arguments about the existence of
a deity? Science isn't necessarily the best tool to use in all
circumstances. Take beauty for example. We know that we all perceive
beauty (and we mostly perceive the same things to be beautiful in nature)
but science does not do a thorough job of explaining it. (By thorough I
mean the same way science explains water freezing at 32 degrees.)

So, if there is no scientific evidence of a deity, what does that really
show?
It establishes that god is purely a figment of the believers' imagination.

Quote:
Lets say you put an object inside a lead box and then I try to determine
the object in the box using X-rays. I fail again and again. Have I shown
that nothing is in the box or that x-rays aren't good for looking inside of
lead boxes?
We know lead exists and we know the properties of lead; we also know what x-rays are. You've established that there is something in the box because it was put there. Therefore what you have done was demonstrate that x-rays will not penetrate lead. Its a false analogy.

Quote:
Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures larger than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

So, if science is the study of the natural universe and god (if he exists) is a super-natural being, how can one catch him with such a net?

/peace
Indeed, supernatural is defined as something outside of nature, so how is it then that anyone could possibly know anything about anything that is supernatural? You must agree that what ever is said about such a thing is wholly imaginary.

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


jive turkey
Theist
jive turkey's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: 2007-05-14
User is offlineOffline
pariahjane wrote: These

pariahjane wrote: These are all subjective. 

I think we are in agreement in principle. Beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose are subjective IF god does not exist.

However, IF god does exist, then beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose can be objectively defined. Aside from that, people mostly agree on what is beautiful (sunsets), what kindness and compassion are....the exceptions prove the rule.


jive turkey
Theist
jive turkey's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: 2007-05-14
User is offlineOffline
*** It establishes that god

*** It establishes that god is purely a figment of the believers' imagination. ***

So, am I safe in assuming that you believe that anything that cannot be proven to exist using science is imaginary? 

***Indeed, supernatural is defined as something outside of nature, so how is it then that anyone could possibly know anything about anything that is supernatural? You must agree that what ever is said about such a thing is wholly imaginary.***

I disagree with the last sentance.  The only way one could know anything about something supernatural is IF that supernatural something was ready, willing and able to reveal it.


Lefank
Theist
Posts: 8
Joined: 2007-05-17
User is offlineOffline
Scientific Stuff

I'm new to this site, so I hope someone can give me some answers to the Big Bang or multiverse theory.  I am a Christian, and I have a limited knowledge of what this theory is. 

I believe that God never had a beginning because he is outside of time.  Since time and causality are related, then I don't think that God needs to have a creator.   It doesn't matter how complex God is because I believe He was never created.

I do not believe that the universe is eternal because it is constantly running out of usable energy due to entropy.  The Big Bang theory would agree that the universe had a point of beginning, and this seems to be the general concensus. 

With the above paragraph in mind, "Everything that has come into existence, was brought into existence by something else.  If something did not already exist but then came into existence, then something had to bring it into existence because something that does not exist cannot bring itself into existence."  I believe that this is very logical, and it therefore requires the universe to have something that brought it into existence.  Why can't God be a possibility?  

That is a summary of my belief.  I came here to get some answers, so I hope someone can help me out with this issue.  I'm particularly interested in the concept of time.  Thanks.


Lefank
Theist
Posts: 8
Joined: 2007-05-17
User is offlineOffline
***Indeed, supernatural is

***Indeed, supernatural is defined as something outside of nature, so how is it then that anyone could possibly know anything about anything that is supernatural? You must agree that what ever is said about such a thing is wholly imaginary.***

 In multiverse theory, it claims there exists parallel universes in which exist outside of our universe and cannot be observed.  So with the above concept in mind, wouldn't that make multiverse theory just imaginary?  Just because something isn't observable or inside nature, then that doesn't make it imaginary.


zntneo
Superfan
Posts: 565
Joined: 2007-01-25
User is offlineOffline
I"m just curious how else

I"m just curious how else can we judge arguments? Wha other kind of arguments are their?

 

In reference to multiverse theory we can see some effects, which is why we proposed the idea of multiverse, if i understand it correctly. one thing is the curious way that gravity is so utterly weak compared to all other fundlemental forces. So they proposed that gravity is leaking into another verse. If someone knows more about this please correct me but this is my understanding. 


magilum
Posts: 2410
Joined: 2007-03-07
User is offlineOffline
Cpt_pineapple wrote: jive

Cpt_pineapple wrote:
jive turkey wrote:

Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures larger than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

 

I'm sorry, that's just hilarous!! Laughing


Wouldn't the 3" netting only catch things larger than 3"?


magilum
Posts: 2410
Joined: 2007-03-07
User is offlineOffline
Metaphors don't support the

Metaphors don't support the point. You're attempting to clarify the nature of something that hasn't been demonstrated to have a nature at all. Why science? Look around you. You're in the house science built, baby.
Beauty, in terms of physical attractiveness in humans, actually has been quantified. There are formulas for symmetry and proportion established, which represent the attributes the average person considers beautiful. Coincidentally, the attributes considered attractive relate to health, fertility, strength, etc. I'm sure a study of objects would reveal similar results.


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5486
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is onlineOnline
magilum wrote: Metaphors

magilum wrote:

Metaphors don't support the point. You're attempting to clarify the nature of something that hasn't been demonstrated to have a nature at all. Why science? Look around you. You're in the house science built, baby.


Beauty, in terms of physical attractiveness in humans, actually has been quantified. There are formulas for symmetry and proportion established, which represent the attributes the average person considers beautiful. Coincidentally, the attributes considered attractive relate to health, fertility, strength, etc. I'm sure a study of objects would reveal similar results.

 

 

This is reductionism. It's like saying a Shakespeare play is nothing but words. 


Susan
Susan's picture
Posts: 3561
Joined: 2006-02-12
User is offlineOffline
Lefank wrote: I'm new to

Lefank wrote:

I'm new to this site, so I hope someone can give me some answers to the Big Bang or multiverse theory. I am a Christian, and I have a limited knowledge of what this theory is.

I believe that God never had a beginning because he is outside of time. Since time and causality are related, then I don't think that God needs to have a creator. It doesn't matter how complex God is because I believe He was never created.

I do not believe that the universe is eternal because it is constantly running out of usable energy due to entropy. The Big Bang theory would agree that the universe had a point of beginning, and this seems to be the general concensus.

With the above paragraph in mind, "Everything that has come into existence, was brought into existence by something else. If something did not already exist but then came into existence, then something had to bring it into existence because something that does not exist cannot bring itself into existence." I believe that this is very logical, and it therefore requires the universe to have something that brought it into existence. Why can't God be a possibility?

That is a summary of my belief. I came here to get some answers, so I hope someone can help me out with this issue. I'm particularly interested in the concept of time. Thanks.

Welcome to the forums!  We're glad you're here.

For the science discussions, check out the Yellow Number Five forum. 

Atheist Books, purchases on Amazon support the Rational Response Squad server.


Mattness
Mattness's picture
Posts: 106
Joined: 2007-04-13
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey

jive turkey wrote:

pariahjane wrote: These are all subjective.

I think we are in agreement in principle. Beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose are subjective IF god does not exist.

However, IF god does exist, then beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose can be objectively defined. Aside from that, people mostly agree on what is beautiful (sunsets), what kindness and compassion are....the exceptions prove the rule.

How does THAT make any sense? Sticking out tongue

Peter: "expressionistic pictures are FAR MORE BEAUTIFUL than the dull impressionism you like so much!!"

Steven: "No impressionism the most beautiful art! Don't be a jerk!"

Marc: "You all don't have any taste at all, can't you appreciate the beauty of landscape drawings?"

Now I want to see YOUR god making that one objective! Smiling

I think he (or rather his fan club) would go about it like this (just a guess):

"Landscape drawings are the only TRUE art! Expressionism and impressionism can't ever be true, because it's the work of humans, your sins reflect in what comes from the human mind, only what depicts my creation can be considered TRUE art."

Or what the do you mean with "when God exists, everything is objective"? Shocked And then, how do you tell that it is objective when your opinion about it is subjective? (I love circles, but it'd still love the hear an answer to that question... have fun comming up with one)

Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life. - Immanuel Kant


aiia
Superfan
aiia's picture
Posts: 1923
Joined: 2006-09-12
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey

jive turkey wrote:

pariahjane wrote:
These are all subjective.


I think we are in agreement in principle. Beauty, love, compassion, hope, kindness, ultimate meaning and purpose are subjective IF god does not exist.
And indeed they are subjective as there is no evidence of a god

jive turkey wrote:

AiiA wrote:
jive turkey wrote:
Why do you guys only deal with scientific arguments about the existence of
a deity? Science isn't necessarily the best tool to use in all
circumstances. Take beauty for example. We know that we all perceive
beauty (and we mostly perceive the same things to be beautiful in nature)
but science does not do a thorough job of explaining it. (By thorough I
mean the same way science explains water freezing at 32 degrees.)

So, if there is no scientific evidence of a deity, what does that really
show?
It establishes that god is purely a figment of the believers' imagination.


So, am I safe in assuming that you believe that anything that cannot be proven to exist using science is imaginary?
The claim is that a god exists. There is no evidence. Therefore the claim is false.

Quote:
***Indeed, supernatural is defined as something outside of nature, so how is it then that anyone could possibly know anything about anything that is supernatural? You must agree that what ever is said about such a thing is wholly imaginary.***

I disagree with the last sentance. The only way one could know anything about something supernatural is IF that supernatural something was ready, willing and able to reveal it.
Then show the evidence for it.

Lefank wrote:


***Indeed, supernatural is defined as something outside of nature, so how is it then that anyone could possibly know anything about anything that is supernatural? You must agree that what ever is said about such a thing is wholly imaginary.***

In multiverse theory, it claims there exists parallel universes in which exist outside of our universe and cannot be observed. So with the above concept in mind, wouldn't that make multiverse theory just imaginary? Just because something isn't observable or inside nature, then that doesn't make it imaginary.
The multiverse theory and the parallel universe theory are two different theories neither of which advocates that they are outside the universe.

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


Vastet
atheistBloggerHigh Level ModeratorSuperfan
Vastet's picture
Posts: 10549
Joined: 2006-12-25
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey wrote: I sent

jive turkey wrote:

I sent the following as an email via the 'contact us' link on the RRS web site in response to the ground rules for the debate challenge. Specifically the rule that only scientific arguments could be used. I think the forum might be a better place for it.

 ------------------------------------

Why do you guys only deal with scientific arguments about the existence of
a deity?  Science isn't necessarily the best tool to use in all
circumstances.  Take beauty for example.  We know that we all perceive
beauty (and we mostly perceive the same things to be beautiful in nature)
but science does not do a thorough job of explaining it. (By thorough I
mean the same way science explains water freezing at 32 degrees.)

So, if there is no scientific evidence of a deity, what does that really
show?

Lets say you put an object inside a lead box and then I try to determine
the object in the box using X-rays.  I fail again and again.  Have I shown
that nothing is in the box or that x-rays aren't good for looking inside of
lead boxes?

--------------------------------

Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Project, used this real life example. A researcher was studying life at the bottom of the ocean and was using a net to gather sea life to bring up and study. This scientist came to the surprising conclusion that there were no creatures larger than 3 inches at the sea bottom. Latter it was discovered that the researcher used a net with 3-inch netting.

So, if science is the study of the natural universe and god (if he exists) is a super-natural being, how can one catch him with such a net?

/peace

If not science, then what? Science is a process of observation and both inductive and deductive understanding. It's not technically limitted to the natural universe. If there is a super natural, then it's not really super natural except in relation to us. If it exists then it's natural. If it exists it can be discovered. I don't see how anything but a scientific process could accomplish anything in such a debate.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


Nimitz68
Nimitz68's picture
Posts: 48
Joined: 2006-10-29
User is offlineOffline
I really enjoy watching

I really enjoy watching people describe the supernatural.


magilum
Posts: 2410
Joined: 2007-03-07
User is offlineOffline
Cpt_pineapple

Cpt_pineapple wrote:

magilum wrote:

Metaphors don't support the point. You're attempting to clarify the nature of something that hasn't been demonstrated to have a nature at all. Why science? Look around you. You're in the house science built, baby.


Beauty, in terms of physical attractiveness in humans, actually has been quantified. There are formulas for symmetry and proportion established, which represent the attributes the average person considers beautiful. Coincidentally, the attributes considered attractive relate to health, fertility, strength, etc. I'm sure a study of objects would reveal similar results.

 

 

This is reductionism. It's like saying a Shakespeare play is nothing but words. 


How about a formula for the use of words? If it can be said that Shakespeare had a "style," which I think is reasonable, that style could be replicated today without suggesting that the man himself had risen from the grave.
The idea of beauty, as we know it, even considering the margins of subjectivity, is a wholly human concept; either founded upon or incidental to human priorities. One that can be defined to an extent, and even justified and explained in the case of physical beauty.


stuntgibbon
Moderator
stuntgibbon's picture
Posts: 699
Joined: 2007-05-17
User is offlineOffline
I don't get it, why isn't

I don't get it, why isn't science supposed to be able to study beauty?  Is beauty not just something which triggers an emotional and/or biological
response from us?    Seems rather straightforward to study things like human behavior, emotional response, brain function, etc. 


ABx
Posts: 195
Joined: 2007-02-26
User is offlineOffline
Quote: With the above

Quote:
With the above paragraph in mind, "Everything that has come into existence, was brought into existence by something else.  If something did not already exist but then came into existence, then something had to bring it into existence because something that does not exist cannot bring itself into existence."  I believe that this is very logical, and it therefore requires the universe to have something that brought it into existence.  Why can't God be a possibility?
Your hypothesis is that soemthing infinitely complex and intelligent exists in a void outside our universe and consciously created this infinitely complex universe. It knows the state, intention, function, past, and future of every atom within it at all times, able to manipulate any and all of them without interfering with any free will. This being loves the beings within it, and demands their obiedience to gain it's favor enough to not let them go  to a place where they will be tortured for all eternity for the crime of not believing in it and obsessing over the what the poor creatures may or may not have done with their genitals. This hypotetical being can not be described in any coherent way, and no logical hypothesis can be found (even after thousands of years) to explain it's behavior, methods, or reasons. The only justification for this hypothesis is that some people can't think of anything better, and/or don't want to because it seems unpleasant to them. By the way, though, this being knows, and is very concerned with, every thought you have, and he created this place of eternal torture that is your ultimate destination unless you accept him and do exactly what a bunch of people said he said a really long time ago. Many many other similar explanations exist, but only because he fooled a LOT of people for thousands of years for the single purpose of confusing you to see if you REALLY believe in him. Oh, and all those people are to be considered evil (regardless of their actual character) and are now suffering eternal torture because they had the misfortune of being born at the wrong time. Unless you are of another denomination, in which case the people that say the above are doomed to eternal torture because you know the REAL truth, which allows you to decry everyone else's thoughts on the matter as an attempt to monopolize truth, and therefore attempt to trivialize it to lend creedence to your own. Any evidence that does not support your feelings can, and should be, trivialized and deemed incorrect, as these feelings shoudl be of the utmost importance in any and every person's life, and everyone need agree less they find themselves tortured eternally.

This theory has not, in any way, benefited science. It has, however, influence generations of people in a way that has stunted it's progress, and even destroyed prior progress. It has not lead to any discoveries that can be observed as true, and has not added to our understanding of how the universe behaves or functions.

The scientific hypothesis is that in the same place there may have been some simple and inert forces or particles/matter that do what we know they can do, and it resulted in something that, a few billion years after the fact, resembles the behavior of an explosion. This hypothesis has a logical basis that can be explained to a fairly fine degree and stands up to the strictest scrutiny by thousands of peers who would have a LOT to gain by disproving it. This theory (no longer a hypothesis after said scrutiny) has lead to many other hypothesis that have been observed and proven correct. Thus far expected results of this event have been observed to be present and accounted for and may even solve other mysteries with no direct relation to this particular question. They ultimately add a great deal to our understanding of the universe in which we live. This understanding may directly enhance the lives of everyone in the future in real and tangible ways. It may even lead to discoveries that could potentially resolve direct sources of conflict and suffering without interfering with any individual's personal feelings or beliefs. It also stands universally observable despite any cultural differences, opinions, experiences, and so on, and can be verified by anyone.

The multiverse theory has mathematical proofs that are coherent and can be demonstrated, and stand up to scrutiny. It's not an accepted fact yet as there's no way to test it beyond the math (afaik), but it would, in fact, help to make sense of many things in physics, and if it's proven could drive things like physics forward. The concept of a god would not, there would be no tangible benefit.

It should be pretty obvious which one has the higher probability. If the multiverse theory is correct, then it's hypothetically possible that we were created by intelligent beings like ourselves, but that still wouldn't equate to "god", and wouldn't, in itself, really explain anything. We'd still want to know how it happened.

[Note: I'm just a layman when it comes to science, so I welcome corrections to any scientific misconceptions I may hold.]

Quote:
I don't get it, why isn't science supposed to be able to study beauty?  Is beauty not just something which triggers an emotional and/or biological
response from us?    Seems rather straightforward to study things like human behavior, emotional response, brain function, etc.
I agree. There are traits that science has found to be fairly universally considered beautiful, such as symmetry. They have also studied quite a bit about music, and they can tell good music from bad objectively. Granted, that doesn't speak for anyone's individual tastes, but there is still science to it.


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5486
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is onlineOnline
magilum

magilum wrote:
Cpt_pineapple wrote:

magilum wrote:

Metaphors don't support the point. You're attempting to clarify the nature of something that hasn't been demonstrated to have a nature at all. Why science? Look around you. You're in the house science built, baby.


Beauty, in terms of physical attractiveness in humans, actually has been quantified. There are formulas for symmetry and proportion established, which represent the attributes the average person considers beautiful. Coincidentally, the attributes considered attractive relate to health, fertility, strength, etc. I'm sure a study of objects would reveal similar results.

 

 

This is reductionism. It's like saying a Shakespeare play is nothing but words.


How about a formula for the use of words? If it can be said that Shakespeare had a "style," which I think is reasonable, that style could be replicated today without suggesting that the man himself had risen from the grave.
The idea of beauty, as we know it, even considering the margins of subjectivity, is a wholly human concept; either founded upon or incidental to human priorities. One that can be defined to an extent, and even justified and explained in the case of physical beauty.

 

A formula for word usage?

 

I have a thought experiment: How would you describe the colour red to a blind person who never saw red? 


Susan
Susan's picture
Posts: 3561
Joined: 2006-02-12
User is offlineOffline
Cpt_pineapple wrote: I

Cpt_pineapple wrote:

I have a thought experiment: How would you describe the colour red to a blind person who never saw red?

I saw that exact question in a movie, although I don't remember which one.

The seeing person put a very warm rock in the blind person's hand and wrapped their fingers around it and said that red looked like the hot rock felt.

I thought it made sense.

 

Atheist Books, purchases on Amazon support the Rational Response Squad server.


Rev_Devilin
Rev_Devilin's picture
Posts: 485
Joined: 2007-05-16
User is offlineOffline
Science has

Science has limitations.

logic and Reason  the foundations of scientific principles can still be used to explain that which the scientific method can not.

 Example

A small child tells you of an invisible friend they have. science cannot dismiss the possibility of this invisible friend existing. logic and Reason tells you it doesn't. logic and Reason should also tell you the motivation for a child to fabricate the existence of an invisible friend. the history of the child would suggest it craves for more companionship

 Now when an adult tells you of an invisible friend that they call god. and science cannot dismiss the possibility of this invisible friend existing. then one should look into the motivation and the history of this adult before accepting this probable fabricationn on faith.

For example Christianity the Bible was created by the Roman Emperor Constantine in a place called Constantinople. Constantine was a power-hungry serial killer.his motivation for creating the Bible was to unite the crumbling Roman Empire with a single religious doctrine. which he did by the most ruthless and bloody means. thus the Roman Catholic church. from which all Christian movements are founded.

logic and reason. tells us that the Roman Emperor Constantine's invisible friend is a fabrication.

There are lots of invisible friends. and I'd be happy to explain the history and motivation of the main ones. history is a fascinating subject

 logic and reason. like science cannot disprove negatives. ie  invisible friends. but they can show the motivation behind there creation 


magilum
Posts: 2410
Joined: 2007-03-07
User is offlineOffline
Does a person blind from

Does a person blind from birth have a concept of color?

Ooh! Does an atheist have a concept of spirituality or GOD!!!!????!!!11

I've posted something about whether spirituality really is a qualitative term in the philosophy forum. I honestly don't know whether “spirituality” has a meaning. I tend toward the simpler answer, that “spirituality” is a feeling with biological origins. It's not definitive, but unless better evidence arises for spirituality as an actual thing we're in the business of creating false dichotomies.


magilum
Posts: 2410
Joined: 2007-03-07
User is offlineOffline
Science can't be tested to

Science can't be tested to 100% accuracy so all propositions are on equal footing. Is that right?

STFU with this already.


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5486
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is onlineOnline
magilum wrote: Science

magilum wrote:
Science can't be tested to 100% accuracy so all propositions are on equal footing. Is that right? STFU with this already.

 

That wasn't my point. 


magilum
Posts: 2410
Joined: 2007-03-07
User is offlineOffline
Cpt_pineapple

Cpt_pineapple wrote:

magilum wrote:
Science can't be tested to 100% accuracy so all propositions are on equal footing. Is that right? STFU with this already.

 

That wasn't my point. 


I was talking to the other guy.


jive turkey
Theist
jive turkey's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: 2007-05-14
User is offlineOffline
Mattness wrote: Or what the

Mattness wrote:
Or what the do you mean with "when God exists, everything is objective"? Shocked And then, how do you tell that it is objective when your opinion about it is subjective?

If god exist then he/she/it gets to deside what is beautiful, lovely, good, ect. Therefore, those things are objective through the lens of Ultimate Reality (god) . (I realize we disagree on the existence of god, but my statement about objectivity presumes god's existence.)


Rev_Devilin
Rev_Devilin's picture
Posts: 485
Joined: 2007-05-16
User is offlineOffline
jive Turkey "presumes god's

jive Turkey

"presumes god's existence"

May I ask for the source of this presumption ?


jive turkey
Theist
jive turkey's picture
Posts: 41
Joined: 2007-05-14
User is offlineOffline
AiiA wrote: Then show the

AiiA wrote:
Then show the evidence for (God's existence).

I'm not trying to convince you that God exist nor do I entertain the notion that I could if I wanted to. But to speak directly to your point, I have found that evidence for God is highly personal and really only good evidence for the person who has it. Sort of like if I asked you to prove that you love someone. We would end up with anecdotal evidence. I personally believe in God for a variety of reasons but the short answer is 'because I want to'.

Vastet wrote:

If not science, then what? Science is a process of observation and both inductive and deductive understanding. It's not technically limitted to the natural universe. If there is a super natural, then it's not really super natural except in relation to us. If it exists then it's natural. If it exists it can be discovered. I don't see how anything but a scientific process could accomplish anything in such a debate.

We (theist) take as a given that God is outside of what we refer to as nature, that there is a deeper reality that we have not the capacity to grasp. This may be the sort of claim that drive atheist crazy because there's no way to prove or disprove a given....it is simply a given. But that's the best way I know to say it, we just accept it.

Here's an analogy I posted in the Philosophy forum that elaborates on this position:

********
I'm writing this post on Windows XP SP2. The windows kernel's job is to provide a framework in which other processes can 'exist' and perform functions. To do this, the kernel directly interfaces with the hardware resources like the RAM and CPU and allocates them to other processes. However, in my case, XP is not sitting directly on top of the hardware, it is running as a virtual machine on top of a virtual OS. Now, XP 'thinks' it is sitting directly on top of the hardware (it is a 'real' instance of XP) and everything works precisely like it would if XP were interfacing the hardware directly, but in fact, it is not. It is still the job of the kernel to know what resources it has and allocate them to other processes and it still does this job just as well as an installation of XP that really does sit on top of the hardware. However, there is a deeper layer that XP has no means of accessing.
********
/peace


Vastet
atheistBloggerHigh Level ModeratorSuperfan
Vastet's picture
Posts: 10549
Joined: 2006-12-25
User is offlineOffline
jive turkey wrote: Vastet

jive turkey wrote:

Vastet wrote:

If not science, then what? Science is a process of observation and both inductive and deductive understanding. It's not technically limitted to the natural universe. If there is a super natural, then it's not really super natural except in relation to us. If it exists then it's natural. If it exists it can be discovered. I don't see how anything but a scientific process could accomplish anything in such a debate.

We (theist) take as a given that God is outside of what we refer to as nature, that there is a deeper reality that we have not the capacity to grasp. This may be the sort of claim that drive atheist crazy because there's no way to prove or disprove a given....it is simply a given. But that's the best way I know to say it, we just accept it.

Here's an analogy I posted in the Philosophy forum that elaborates on this position:

********
I'm writing this post on Windows XP SP2. The windows kernel's job is to provide a framework in which other processes can 'exist' and perform functions. To do this, the kernel directly interfaces with the hardware resources like the RAM and CPU and allocates them to other processes. However, in my case, XP is not sitting directly on top of the hardware, it is running as a virtual machine on top of a virtual OS. Now, XP 'thinks' it is sitting directly on top of the hardware (it is a 'real' instance of XP) and everything works precisely like it would if XP were interfacing the hardware directly, but in fact, it is not. It is still the job of the kernel to know what resources it has and allocate them to other processes and it still does this job just as well as an installation of XP that really does sit on top of the hardware. However, there is a deeper layer that XP has no means of accessing.
********
/peace

The idea that something exists which is impossible to percieve in any way is incoherant. It doesn't matter whether it's within the universe or outside of it. Anything that exists, exists. The only given of something that exists is that it can be discovered and explained. Even the suggestion that we don't have the capability to comprehend something lies within the limitations of todays technology and knowledge. If I went back 5000 years in time and showed someone a television they'd think I was a god. The invention couldn't even be explained to them as not magical, since all the parts of a television depend on inventions and concepts based on inventions and concepts based on inventions and concepts that wouldn't exist for thousands of years. You'd have to educate them in the basics of light wavelengths, electronics, glass and metal working, vacuums, etc before you could even begin to expect them to understand the television. But they could understand it if they learned all those things that they needed to.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.