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24enak asserts that there isn't.
Let's see if they can argue it.
Sorry about that.
I wasn't sure how to respond to your post since it seemed more like you were expressing your ideas about your own salvation as opposed to getting into a discussion about the stupid stuff we were discussing here.
But I saw it and I appreciated your complement.
But like I said, I just didn't really know how to respond or if I was supposed to.
World events are certainly startling right now-- I love that slightly surreal feeling you get when you realize you are watching the world change in a lurch instead of a slow creep!
But the only way current events are proof that the bible is right is if they are inconsistent with any other theory that could explain them-- like, for instance, the world is a wacky place and sometimes people do strange things. Game theory can often predict those strange things. History is full of other times when people looked around and were convinced that this was the end of the world, everything was happening just like the bible said, and yet they still haven't turned out to be right.
Human beings are very good at finding patterns. Our brains are tuned to it, and I think it is the basis for most of what we call intelligence. But sometimes we look too hard for patterns, and we end up with a bias towards things making sense. Despite ample evidence that things often don't make sense, we prefer explanations that tie things neatly up in bows. Science is, in some ways, part of that bias I think.
I believe what I believe, and I don't care what others believe.
However, It kills me to hear the so called enlighten ones claim there is no God, but turn right around and tell me there are billions of galaxies, and untold dimensions. That is a untold amount of places a superior being could be. Out of all those places, there could not be a being so superior that it makes my feeble mind think they are miracles.
Then they say we know less that a trillion trillion of 1% of all knowledge(last time I heard one of the intelligent elite talk about all knowledge from a few years ago had this as a number. Or as he put it, absolutely nothing.) Yep these intelligent people who admit they know nothing, except what they can perceive; that there is no God. Man is arrogant, but that is just plain "pile of rock" stupid.
I don't mind nor care what your believing, just don't call me stupid to believe something you can not prove or disprove. Shoot man can not even explain what God is other than what religion tells us. So as Socrates would put it. When asked if there is a God, say "i don't know" and change the subject.....
I believe what I believe, and I don't care what others believe
Hydro, you didn't invite me to your forum! I just bumbled in tonight.
Time is always a factor with such discussions, but I can't resist the bait.
To answer your question, I pose another (and I'm sure you must know where I'm going with this):
Is there a First Principle, a Universal Axiom from which all others may be deduced?
Sorry about not giving you a heads up about this. I created this to give 24enak (now "el riot") a chance to defend his assertion that there is, in fact, no God. In other words, I was basically giving an atheist a chance to defend his view.
It would appear that he couldn't.
But, to your question - I can't answer it since I'm not sure how you are using the words "principle" and "axiom".
Since it looks like you are using the terms somewhat interchangeably, it would seem that you are using "principle" or "axiom" to mean a statement or idea assumed to be true. Through the use of some form of logic, other statements might (potentially) be shown to follow from an axiom (or set of axioms).
Given that, it would seem you are asking if there is a single statement, assumed to be true, from which all other statements could be derived.
I think the obvious answer is no - which makes me think that I'm not getting how you are using the words "principle" or "axiom".
First, thanks for providing me the background on the motivation for this particular forum. Obviously I would come at it from the opposite angle as the Atheist.
Correct, I use the two interchangeably, and I capitalize them on purpose. I am not referring to this or that branch of mathematics -- I am referring to an explanation for the Universe, including our own existence -- these are the questions which both "religion" and "science" seek to "answer." Correct?
The Judeo-Christian understanding was the first to suggest that the Universe, and our existence, are the result of a First Mover, and that this First Mover is Personal. My point is that, to my understanding, "science" (aka, "Natural Philosophy," or "physics"), a thought system which found its birth within the Judeo-Christian tradition, suggests the same thing, the only difference being, it makes no claim on the "personality" of the First Principle. For the most of science history, "the first principle" varied depending on the realm of physics under consideration, but the move has always been toward more general principles, with the "penultimate goal" being the discovery of the "Theory of Everything" (aka, "First Principle").
So, my point is that modern science points us toward the notion of a First Mover -- "religion" (specifically, Christianity) merely makes the additional claim that this Mover is Personal.
As with your last forum, I do not claim to give a proof for God's existence -- my intent is simply to show that belief in God is reasonable.
I would argue (and will) that your use of the notion of a "first principle" to link the idea of God with the attempts in physics to come up with a Theory of Everything (TOE) is, at best, a loose analogy.
If a TOE were ever found, it wouldn't be an "axiom" or a "principle", it would be a physical model consisting of or one or more fundamental equations with one or more empirically derived constants.
Some argue that such a theory could never be tested since its predictions would require the generation of energy on a scale which could never be realistically realized. Current Grand Unified Theories and String Theories suffer from a similar situation. We are decades away from being able to build machines which can actually test some of their more direct predictions.
And even if a TOE could be tested, limitations on experimental accuracy and the fundamental problem of not being able to prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, a theory which uses induction would prevent anyone from ever being able to so say that such a theory is 100% true or that another, better TOE, isn't just around the corner.
Beyond that, keep in mind that a TOE would be a theory about the fundamental forces and particles/fields. At best, such a theory could be used only to make predictions about empirical reality so it would only be a theory of everything if you don't accept the existence of anything beyond what can be verified empirically.
In addition, many don't believe you could actually predict all things empirical from such a theory - in particular, chaotic and complex systems (like organic systems) seem to go beyond the notion of something simply being the sum of its parts. In other words, understanding the fundamental forces and particles/fields of the universe won't allow you to explain something like consciousness.
Lastly, it's debatable whether a TOE would actually have to ability to explain the origin of the universe itself - that would be like having an empirical theory which can explain its own origin or basis.
With all of that in mind, I think it's a bit of a stretch to try to associate the limited human endeavor of developing a TOE with the notion of God.
Rejoining this rightfully praised discussion I'd like to offer some thoughts:
1.) Even if a (!) TOE is found, there can be no reassurance that it stays such a theory, that is, that it won't be subject to change or has to be replaced by another "TOE". History offers some examples, where such belief in universality was misplaced: That Max Planck was told by his professor, that he should stay out of physics because close to everything was accomplished in this field, is now a well-known anecdote, but reveals how scientists thought about physics at their time. This error in judgement is now apparent and should be a stark reminder, that a scientific theory can always be overrated, especially when it is a very successful one.
2.) Regarding your remarks on chaotic and complex systems: I, for my part, believe that you can't give up materialism, without losing the scientific character of science itself. What one should give up, is hope that every scientific question has an exact answer. That it is not feasible (and that is essentially the problem IMO) to describe phenomena like consciousness or biological organisms on an atomic level doesn't exclude the possibility that it is possible.
3.) From a point of view that includes the evolution of human thought, thereby widening the scope of what was understood to be a TOE in history, the God-TOE analogy has some merits. Both are agents that try to explain "everything" and both are subject to change.
Sorry for the lateness of my response - I was... delayed.
(Yes, that was a Gandalf quote)
1) I pretty much said the same thing above. Since no scientific theory can be proven, there is no way to know if we have a true theory. At best, we have the best theory given our understanding of things at that time.
2) I'm not suggesting giving up materialism - but folks who work with complex and chaotic systems will tell you that effectively, given our current understanding and approach to things, trying to describe those types of systems by appealing to the rules which dictate the behavior of the constituents involved doesn't get you very far. They instead appeal to a set of intermediate rules which help them describe those types of systems. Those are, effectively, the fundamental rules given our current understanding.
3) It's hard to predict the evolution of human understanding. Where we are now is very different from what it was a hundred years ago. In another hundred or couple of hundred, I'm sure our views will seem simplistic or just plain wrong. But we can only work with what we have now and I don't find the analogy very moving - but then, I'm an agnostic on that topic of God so that shouldn't be very surprising.
I actually agree with pretty much all of what you've said about the TOE, should it ever come to be. And perhaps you are also correct in characterizing what I've wrote above and elsewhere as "an analogy" (I don't know about "loose", but certainly an analogy). My point isn't to say that "God" and "TOE" are the same thing, nor am I associating God with "the human endeavor" -- I am associating God with the TOE itself.
I suppose I am one of those scientists who "reafy" physical theories -- it is how I think. In the end, whenever and wherever a rational explanation or answer to some question is offered, one finds that the explanation either deductively derives from a first principle of some sort, or it inductively leads to a more fundamental principle. And so it is with Judeo-Christian theology.
I think I get what you mean by "associating God with the TOE itself" and how you attribute an objective reality to physical theories.
I don't. To me, scientific theories are models which attempt to mimic observed regularities in nature.
Ultimately, I think it's a matter of opinion. If there are objective "laws" which dictate how physical objects behave, I don't think we will ever be in a position to actually prove it.
I realized during this discussion (and from all the previous ones) that this is one of the disconnects that we are having. At one time I would've insisted that I was the one who was correct (that physical theories are themselves fundamental objective realities that lie "beneath" actual phenomena), but I've come to realize that this is a philosophical assumption on my part... and one that seems to go hand-and-hand with a theistic world view...
It's not very often that discussions on the internet impress me. It really seems like you two are taking this further than the usual regurgitation of well-rehearsed arguments, and doing some exploration. Learning is awesome :)
Agree that it's been an edifying dialogue... and I'm very impressed to see someone else out there is actually following along....
[such as myself] who have followed the thread and have been similarly impressed by the exchange of views. And with this post, future comments will now appear on my tracking page. So...more pearls of wisdom and provocative insights, please.
Holy crap -- splendid seeing you here! Thanks for the positive feedback....
"So...more pearls of wisdom..."
You look like Zaphod Beeblebrox?
My wife thought so too...thus the naming of our first born "Zaphod". (We decided to forego "Beeblebrox" so as to not subject him to peer mockery.)
Zaphod looks uncannily like Chad!
Maybe all three are actually the same person - along with Barry Gibb :O
"Whom does Jer look like?"
This guy is and was better looking than yours truly, but I've always been told I resembled him. And the picture of me [which, btw, was originally posted here by accident] and the linked one were taken the same year (1981).
Now, on to much more serious issues. Sorry for the detour.
Like, but I am better looking,,,, and smarter.
He couldnt even type
80 words per minute...and edited scripts, too.
You've been told you resemble Marty Robbins?
OK, enough of this.
than Marty [b.1925 d.1982] has looked lately.
OK, I wasn't going to join in this inanity, but now I'm gonna...
I was thinking the late Brent Mydland.
His eyes freak me out.
I actually find it kind of cool when two people, in the course of a discussion, pinpoint the fundamental disagreement which serves as the basis for the difference in their views.
I lower my pistol, sir.
And I've learned things in the process...
Overall great forums, I have to say.
Sheathing my sword....
I'm jumping in here to object mildly. On a more formal level there is a single statement, from which if assumed true every other statement follows: Any contradictory statement.
Correct me if I'm wrong (and I actually do mean that), but wouldn't only wff's within the logic/math system in which the contradiction is accepted as true be derivable from the contradiction?
And even then, I'm not sure if the axioms and/or the logic rules themselves within that system could be derived in such a way.
That aside, I'm not aware of any logic/math system within which all conceivable statements of all natural languages would count as wff's so I don't think the technically you point out really covers all statements.
All that aside - math and logic have no semantic component so I would think that that also prevents them from encompassing all possible natural language statements.
But honestly, this isn't my area of work so if I've got something wrong here, let me know.
So if I understand your argument, there is no God because there are many different religions.
OK, let me counter that by pointing out that if there is a God, his existence isn't predicated on man's ability to understand or accurately characterize him. In other words, the fact that there are so many apparently conflicting religions has no bearing on the fact of the matter of whether he exists or not.
As an analogy, would you say that there is no empirical reality since science currently doesn't have a complete theory which explains all aspects of empirical reality?
Of course not.
That doesn't answer the question of why there are so many religions, if there is only one god. There is only one answer to the question whether or not there is a God(s), yes or no, not possibly. Possibly isn't an answer. Science will never have all the answers, because as previous questions are answered, new questions will arise. Science will never say "well we've answered all of mans questions and problems, lets go home.
"The fact that there are so many apparently conflicting religions has no bearing on the fact of the matter of whether he exists or not." Yes it does, your wording implies that it does. He implies one, as in one god, but there are many religions that worship and believe in more than one god. So how did this one god, become so many gods? And if there is one God why is polytheism so much older than monotheism?
Alright - correct me if I'm wrong here - but it seems as though your argument is that the existence and characteristics of supernatural entities are determined by man's understanding of or views about those entities.
Is that correct?
If so, is that the case with natural entities as well?
Does the fact that there are different views/theories about the Higgs Boson mean that the Higgs doesn't exist?
Honestly, I'm having trouble following your argument.
No because there isn't any supernatural entities, which would include ghosts, monsters, and werewolves. Man created Ghosts, monsters, superheros, and the idea of god(s). Just because man believes in something doesn't make it real, if I believe I have a million dollars, doesn't mean I do. The difference between theories and science and different beliefs in god(s) is that scientific theory can be supported with things like fossils and equations. Proof of god(s) existence cannot be supported with evidence, and please present me with some evidence of god(s) existence if you have some.
No supernatural entities? Prove it.
Look, the point of this was for you to defend your assertion that there is no God (although it would now seem you've extended your argument to all supernatural entities) - that is, to provide an argument to support it.
But all you are doing is simply restating your assertion.
You also seem to contradict yourself. In some cases you seem to say that there can be no evidence for the existence of God but in other place you said the second coming of Jesus would provide such evidence. Which is it?
And in science, equations are consequences of a theory - they don't provide support for a theory.
As for me providing you with proof of God's existence - well, that would be a mighty odd thing for me to do given that I'm an agnostic. Besides, that wasn't what this forum was about.
Look, I think it's pretty clear that your assertion that there is no God is more an opinion based on a gut feeling - which puts you on pretty much the same level as someone who asserts that there is one for the same reason.
Nothing wrong with that. But next time, you might want to include the phrase "In my opinion" before stating that there is no God.
There is no hard evidence that proves bigfoots, ghost, loch ness monster, god(s) are real. So they don't exist. When a body of a big foot is found, or when one is captured I will believe in them, same goes for other super natural entities. So in your world is there anything as fiction or is everything possibly non-fiction. Was the odyssey based on a true story?
I am saying there is no evidence of god, or big foot etc. just like at one time there was no evidence of evolution, until man started finding fossils, and with DNA and genetics breakthrough the idea of evolution had support. God(s) big foots, monsters, don't have that same kind of evidence and support.
That is what the forum is about Is there a God? Thats a yes or no question. And no one, not just you, has provided any proof of god(s) existence. "In my opinion" is no way to start an argument.
If there was evidence for god(s) existence then I would believe in god(s), but there is no evidence that supports that, other the what man has written. But if this is all the evidence that there is, man's writing, then you would have to take The Odyssey, and every other work of fiction as proof of whatever the subject matter is.
What evidence is there for god(s)? A question for anyone with an answer.
Again, you seem to contradict yourself.
You say that if there is no "hard evidence" for Big Foot (for example) then that means it doesn't exist. But then you say that if the body of one was captured, then you would accept that it does exist.
OK, so if the body of one was found tomorrow, wouldn't that mean you were wrong to assert, before the evidence was found, that it didn't exist?
Let me ask you - does the Higgs Boson exist? By your standard, you would have to say no since as of now, there is no direct evidence of the existence of this particle despite scientists looking for it for like thirty years. So by your way of looking at things the guys at the LHC are wasting their time, right?
How about gravitons, or gravity waves or supersymmetrical particles? No direct evidence of those things. So, again, by your way of thinking they do not exist and so the people searching for them are just being stupid.
And let's get back to God. I'll admit that there isn't enough hard evidence to support the assertion that God (or whatever supernatural entity responsible for the creation of the universe) exits. But that in itself doesn't mean he doesn't - just as with the case of the Higgs or the other things I mentioned above.
Your approach is obviously flawed.
And in fact, your line of thinking has been recognized as flawed for centuries. Look up a guy named Hume and his thoughts on induction.
God isn't into proof but rather FAITH - people that believe despite considerable evidence to the contrary - and so science apparently disproving God's existence just translates into more faith being required by believers - and again this is what God wants - people of faith, not people of proof...
Incidentally God did come down here to appear to everyone in the form of Jesus and there are still unbelievers so His appearance here makes no difference to unbelievers. To become a believer requires a leap of faith, from there the study of Christ provides many affirmations of becoming a believer
With a closed mind one will never be able to believe...
As to why I became a believer here are a few things - Biblical things just work better than non-Biblical things - for exampe:
Forgiveness - affirmed by science to be more healthy - and proves to be when employed
Where does disease come from? This has been a thorn in the side of the Darwin crowd - survival of the fittest should have eliminated disease long ago, but actually why is there disease in the first place? Where does it come from regarding Darwin's model
Women of Jesus' time here were of very little importance, certainly no civic leaders carrying the weight and respect of reputation, etc. Within this environment Jesus chose to appear to a women to deliver the news of His resurrection. A man-made religon would never dream of fabricating such a thing - let alone God being born in a barn in a little inconsequential town in the middle of nowhere, or having Him later humilated on the cross.
No other religion has this concept except Christianity. And it makes no sense in so many respects that it would be virtually impossible to br createf by mankind - yet it commands the belief of roughly one billion people at this time...
Try starting a 2000 year religion with 12 non-religous everday people, confuse them with your teachings for 3 years, then have yourself go away and see if it ends up rivaling Christianity - for this is how Christianity started...
Congratulations Jimmy Carter!
I'm not sure where you get the idea that science disproves God's existence.
Science says nothing about supernatural entities - it makes no assertions about their existence or non-existence.
You say that religion isn't about proof but rather that it's about faith. I agree. But then you feel compelled to argue for Christianity. That seems odd to me.
As an aside, I'm pretty sure the idea of disease doesn't pose any problem for evolution. If you have a link to an evolutionary scientist saying this, I'd be interested in seeing it.
"Survival of the fittest" doesn't mean evolution towards perfection. As an analogy, consider the evolution of the keyboard. There are keyboard configurations out there where are more effective than the QWERTY configuration, so why haven't they been adopted? Simple answer - because the QWERTY keyboard works well enough. There's no real driving force to change it.
Also, you are assuming disease is bad. Elimination of disease might be problematic in that it might lead to overpopulation and the elimination of resources which in turn might lead to extinction of the species.
I'm no evolutionary scientist and if I can come up with the above ideas off the top of my head, I doubt very much that guys who work with the theory for a living find the idea of disease to be a "thorn in the side".
The existence of disease is absolutely not a thorn in the side of the Darwin crowd, nor has it ever been. In fact, the evolution of disease is one of the more easily visualized pieces of evidence in favor of microevolution.
Having a good debate where people disagree about the fundamentals is one thing.
Criticizing the opposing side for not being able to address an issue which isn't even an issue is another.
Hearing this "disease" argument makes me think that there are folks out there presenting BS arguments against evolution figuring that folks who don't know any better will simply accept them - much like the "evolution violates the 2nd Law of Thermo" argument.
Hearing this "disease" argument makes me think that there are folks out there presenting BS arguments against evolution figuring that folks who don't know any better will simply accept them
The worst offenders are the handful of scientists making bogus arguments against evolution who know that 99% of the population will accept it because they use dense scientific language and technical terms that only microbiologists understand. Even well informed people who want to evaluate those arguments really can't, and they accept them because they sound official. It's grossly dishonest.
It's been a few years, but at one point I tried actually reading papers on ID published by the Discovery Institute. As a whole, they were the worst written, hardest to read scientific papers I have ever tried to plow through. I have to think that's done on purpose-- while scientists are often bad writers, no one writes that inscrutably by accident!
Oh, what a hollow life ye must lead, Professor Enak.
Well, at least you have your studies.
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