Science and religion do mix

Throughout history, science and religion have appeared as being in perpetual conflict, but a new study by Rice University suggests that only a minority of scientists at major research universities see religion and science as requiring distinct boundaries.

"When it comes to questions about the meaning of life, ways of understanding reality, origins of Earth and how life developed on it, many have seen and science as being at odds and even in irreconcilable ," said Rice Elaine Howard Ecklund. But a majority of scientists interviewed by Ecklund and colleagues viewed both religion and science as "valid avenues of knowledge" that can bring broader understanding to important questions, she said.

Ecklund summarized her findings in "Scientists Negotiate Boundaries Between Religion and Science," which appears in the September issue of the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion. Her co-authors were sociologists Jerry Park of Baylor University and Katherine Sorrell, a former postbaccalaureate fellow at Rice and current Ph.D. student at the University of Notre Dame.

They interviewed a scientifically selected sample of 275 participants, pulled from a survey of 2,198 tenured and tenure-track faculty in the natural and social sciences at 21 elite U.S. research universities. Only 15 percent of those surveyed view religion and science as always in conflict. Another 15 percent say the two are never in conflict, and 70 percent believe religion and science are only sometimes in conflict. Approximately half of the original survey population expressed some form of , whereas the other half did not.

"Much of the public believes that as science becomes more prominent, secularization increases and religion decreases," Ecklund said. "Findings like these among elite scientists, who many individuals believe are most likely to be secular in their beliefs, definitely call into question ideas about the relationship between secularization and science."

Many of those surveyed cited issues in the public realm (teaching of creationism versus evolution, stem cell research) as reasons for believing there is conflict between the two. The study showed that these individuals generally have a particular kind of religion in mind (and religious people and institutions) when they say that religion and science are in conflict. 

The study identified three strategies of action used by these scientists to manage the religion-science boundaries and the circumstances that the two could overlap.

Redefining categories – Scientists manage the science-religion relationship by changing the definition of religion, broadening it to include noninstitutionalized forms of spirituality.

Integration models – Scientists deliberately use the views of influential scientists who they believe have successfully integrated their religious and scientific beliefs.

Intentional talk – Scientists actively engage in discussions about the boundaries between science and religion.

"The kind of narrow research available on religion and science seems to ask if they are in conflict or not, when it should really ask the conditions under which they are in conflict," Ecklund said. "Our research has found that even within the same person, there can be differing views. It's very important to dispel the myth that people believe that religion and science either do or don't conflict. Our study found that many people have much more nuanced views."

These nuanced views often find their way into the classroom, according to those interviewed. One biologist, an atheist not part of any religious tradition, admitted that she makes a sincere effort to present science such that "religious students do not need to compromise their own selves." Although she is not reconsidering her personal views on religion, she seeks out resources to keep her religious students engaged with science.

Other findings:

• Scientists as a whole are substantially different from the American public in how they view teaching "intelligent design" in public schools. Nearly all of the scientists – religious and nonreligious alike – have a negative impression of the theory of intelligent design.

• Sixty-eight percent of scientists surveyed consider themselves spiritual to some degree.

• Scientists who view themselves as spiritual/religious are less likely to see religion and science in conflict.

• Overall, under some circumstances even the most religious of scientists were described in very positive terms by their nonreligious peers; this suggests that the integration of religion and science is not so distasteful to all scientists.

Ecklund said the study's findings will go far in improving the public's perception of science. "I think it would be helpful for the public to see what scientists are actually saying about these topics, rather than just believe stereotypes," she said. "It would definitely benefit public dialogue about the relationship between and religion."

Ecklund is the author of "Science vs. Religion: What Scientists Really Think," published by Oxford University Press last year.


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Sep 21, 2011
this is exactly what i experienced in college -- all of my math professor were active in churches -- every biology prof was a member of a church ---

Sep 21, 2011
El_Nose I would like to see this broken down further, from my experience, hard scientists (MD, math, chem, physics, etc) have more respect for religion than do social science.

Sep 21, 2011
Nice to see an article which tells the truth. Many scientists are religious and many who profess religion respect science.

Conflicts are generally expressions of political agenda.

There is no fundamental conflict between religion and science.

Sep 21, 2011
I would be interesting too to investigate attitudes in Europe - where formal religion, at least among indigenous Europeans, would appear to be of a lot less interest than in many parts of the US. I found it interesting that El Nose even knew which of his teachers were religious - as someone who was in school and university in the '60s and '70s in the UK I didn't have a clue about the religious orientation of any of my teachers,with the exception of the religious instruction teacher at school, of course.

Sep 21, 2011
djr,
To me - science is an evidence based system of exploration. There is no evidence to support the existence of a god figure - hence a fundamental conflict between an evidence based system of thinking, and a faith based system of thinking.


Yet this whole article and all its comments are about a supposed scientific claim to something for which there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever -- dark matter.

There is no evidence for dark matter but many scientists will argue all day that dark matter exists.

Science is a methodology, nothing more. Some people make it a religion, but it is basically just a methodology.

Religious belief is also based on evidence. But what counts as evidence to one person is no evidence to another person. Much of what people believe is predicated on what they want to believe as the belief in dark matter demonstrates.

Sep 21, 2011
I was involved in a discussion about dark matter and thought I was commenting on that issue. The above comment is an error.

Sep 21, 2011
There is no evidence to support the existence of a god figure - hence a fundamental conflict between an evidence based system of thinking, and a faith based system of thinking.


Your above statement is illogical. By definition, a faith based system does not purport to be founded on empirical evidence, hence the reliance on 'faith' and the lack of a conflict.

By saying there is no conflict, what is meant is that theoretically, a scientist could also be religious. Science does not purport to answer metaphysical questions, and religions are not empirically verifiable but are based on faith/belief.

Sep 21, 2011
Dark Matter is inferred from gravitational effects on visible matter and gravitational lensing of background radiation

Sep 21, 2011
This study is silly - religion is based on faith whereas science is based on evidence and actually inspecting the detail.

How can anyone say that soemthing based only on faith is a valid world view if it has no proof that it's correct. Silly.

Sep 22, 2011
Ecklund and colleagues viewed both religion and science as "valid avenues of knowledge

Idiot!

Sep 22, 2011
I find it interesting that someone that believes in a Judeo-Christian/Muslim god would find no problem denying the existence of a god like Zeus, yet they are not able to understand why some people think the same way about the deity that they worship.

In my opinion all gods have the same level of credibility whether it be Christian, Muslim, etc, or even the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

Sep 22, 2011
Moderate religious people are not necessarily at odds with science, and there is little conflict, if any. Extremists and creationists indeed ARE incomplatible with scientific worldview. So this question does not have a yes or no answer.

Sep 22, 2011
Moderate religious people are not necessarily at odds with science, and there is little conflict, if any. Extremists and creationists indeed ARE incomplatible with scientific worldview. So this question does not have a yes or no answer.

The conflict is in rationalism and evidence based thinking vs thinking mired in delusion and suggestion. The conflict of (poor) ideas and ideologies based upon them can be far more dangerous than actual physical conflict.

Sep 22, 2011
This study only applies to American Scientists who are far more religious than first world scientists.

Sep 22, 2011
Interesting that most of those who criticize religion would be unpleasantly surprised to discover that their belief in evolution [molecules to man] is itself not distinguishable from a religion.

It certainly has all the characteristics of one and really does not conform to any definition of a scientific theory in any manner or form. Evolutionary theory in general talks about: Origins, developmental history, current events and future events. Since the origins are based on mostly faith and virtually zero facts, the rest is open to question.
Remember that just because people are using scientific instruments and processes does not necessarily make the whole endeavour to uncover happenings in the past a scientific one. It's more a search for a metaphysical reality - trying to answer the same questions - why are we here? where are we ultimately going to end up - how should we conduct ourselves? etc. In effect evolution is a stumbling block to science since it will lead to wrong decisions.

Sep 22, 2011
ShotmanMaslo,
Moderate religious people are not necessarily at odds with science, and there is little conflict, if any. Extremists and creationists indeed ARE incomplatible with scientific worldview. So this question does not have a yes or no answer.


Your first sentence starts out well, then you misuse the word creationist. By a narrow definition which applies to a few extremists, that is, young earth creation, does indeed conflict with science. But that applies to only a few fringe individuals. In the same manner, you might say that flat earthers conflict with science, but you haven't said anything important because flat earthers are an insignificant fringe group.

The belief in a creation does not conflict with science in any way.

Extremists, whether they worship Allah or Gaia generally miss the boat.


Sep 22, 2011
By a narrow definition which applies to a few extremists, that is, young earth creation, does indeed conflict with science. But that applies to only a few fringe individuals. In the same manner, you might say that flat earthers conflict with science, but you haven't said anything important because flat earthers are an insignificant fringe group.

The belief in a creation does not conflict with science in any way.

You seek to sweep religious belief under the rug by reframing it into to some kind of vague belief in 'creation'. That is not what most (all) religions are about, not by a longshot. The vague notion your try to make the conversation about is more akin to personal mysticism. But either way, belief in the undocumented opens the individual up to all kinds of nonsense and woolly thinking and certainly can and does lead to extremism.

Sep 22, 2011
There is no fundamental conflict between religion and science.


Faith is directly in conflict with everything the scientific method stands for.

Sep 22, 2011
Redefining categories Scientists manage the science-religion relationship by changing the definition of religion, broadening it to include noninstitutionalized forms of spirituality.

They aren't even talking about religion in this article... they are saying that scientists can be "spiritual"... which is COMPLETELY different.

Sep 22, 2011
the only reason the search for gravitational waves continues is because of an act of faith. the entire search for the higgs boson is an act of faith. add dark this and that with little or no evidence at all, just models and hypothesis often no more than guesswork.

to the layman, advanced areas of science are no different to religion because people are asked to accept on faith what is asserted due to an inability to comprehend.

object all you want but to most people a scientist that baffles with ideas and words they do not understand is no different from a preacher on a pulpit. except that religion through the church gives comfort to the dying, provides a moral compass and is the basis for societal ethics.

Sep 22, 2011
Kevin once again demonstrates one of the most insidiously hypocritical arguments I've seen the religious here trot out time and time.

Religion is so important, so correct, such a no brainer to Kevin that he literally spends all day on these sites waiting for relevant articles to pop up so he can shit and run on the first post of a topic with a bunch of creationist nonsense.

So then how does he criticize evolution? He calls it a religion.

Well at least we agree that religions are fucking stupid. Evolution has evidence though. Fossil record, DNA, etc. God doesn't. God doesn't exist. You're a moron. Fuck off forever.

Sep 22, 2011
the only reason the search for gravitational waves continues is because of an act of faith. the entire search for the higgs boson is an act of faith. add dark this and that with little or no evidence at all, just models and hypothesis often no more than guesswork.


You don't know what faith means, or you don't know what constitutes evidence, or you don't know anything about the Higgs Boson or Dark Matter/Energy... I'm not sure which, but certainly at least one of the three is true.

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman82,
Faith is directly in conflict with everything the scientific method stands for.


The scientific method is simply a method. It cannot stand for anything. Unless, of course, you make science your god. Then you may make assignment of cognizance to it.

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman82,
Faith is directly in conflict with everything the scientific method stands for.


The scientific method is simply a method. It cannot stand for anything. Unless, of course, you make science your god. Then you may assignment of cognizance to it.


Is English your first language? I'm not trying to be antagonistic, I just want to know if it will be a waste of my time to explain your error.

Sep 22, 2011
You don't know what faith means, or you don't know what constitutes evidence, or you don't know anything about the Higgs Boson or Dark Matter/Energy... I'm not sure which

All of the above.

Sep 22, 2011
what a laugh. neither of you are sure about anything other than your own superiority. dragging your knuckles on the floor again deesky you sad little throwback? any evidence of gravitational waves, um No. any evidence of a higgs boson, um no.

you are both so narrow minded that you cannot accept that theres room for both science and religion in the world, except for perhaps extremists like you, that need exterminating.

odd it seems that religion for the most part has accommodated scientific endeavor but science seems to want to eliminate religion.

Sep 22, 2011
the verbal trick some people are pointing out above--is that we have 'faith' in objectivity of science.

when science uses tools to confirm experiments in a REPEATABLE fashion, we have faith that these empirical observations are factual and form the basis of what we call 'objective' empirical reality. the faith part comes in because most people don't do EVERY experiment, most people do NONE, they READ about the experiments and the laws of science. and the science fetishists who resemble religious nutjobs are the ones that go running around talking about the singularity , the higgs boson and other predictions as facts or near facts. they are nothing of the sort. if something hasn't been confirmed experimentally , it is NOT fact. thoery in science is not fact. MATH is NOT science. it is a tool , a language, to describe the empirical world and then to talk about what it could or SHOULD look like, in order to compare it with what is DOES look like through tools that observe.


Sep 22, 2011
study by Rice University suggests that only a minority of scientists at major research universities see religion and science as requiring distinct boundaries


It isn't scientists that have a conflict between religion and science, it's religious wacko's who are too stupid to understand science and too stupid to question their idiotic belief system, sheep that listen to televangelists and actually believe their crap. They are the most listened to and the least deserving of being listened to, let alone believed. Every single televangelist is nothing more than a snake oil salesman.

ACW
Sep 22, 2011
@Keven who said that Evolutionary theory has zero facts.

What rock have you been hiding under?

Sep 22, 2011
i got voted a one -- so this is a rant (fair warning)

Since all i did was agree with the article and got voted down, I will go ahead and state what i held back - because i didn't want yet another religious discussion in the forum. But, Since Frank is so anti religion...

I do not argue for creationism - as a pure world view i feel it is flawed, and since most people who claim to be religious do not even understand the creationist arguments, you are only exposed to how deep they are in a formal education such as attending college, once i took a philosophy course and was made to understand the creationist argument i realized that as a formal argument i just disagreed with it -- its not my philosophy.

I see no problem with taking the book of Genesis as mostly symbolic in nature. The Bible as guideline on how to live life and love God. I do not see the Bible as a way figure out if the universe is revolving around the Earth or if we are in a random spot.

Sep 22, 2011
(rant cont..)

kevin does believe that the Bible is literal and freely accepts and self labels himself as a Creationist -- big whoop -- is having that view point so ugly that we as educated people resort to what we see here everyday -- mud slinging is cleaner -- and no i do not support kevin when he slings poo as he often does

But as i stated and got a 1 for -- when i was in college my professors were active in churches - they were also science professors and they understood or at least felt that the Bible tells them how to love God and Science tells them what is observable by man.

PERSONALLY - We used to teach faith right along with science in schools -- the Constitution explicitly protects religion from government, Law school teaches that protection one way implicitly implies protection the other way - but that is not written anywhere, its congressional law that each session be opened by prayer - our forefathers were deeply religious men that were protestant and wanted (cont..)

Sep 22, 2011
our forefathers were deeply religious men that were protestant and wanted


LOL you almost had me until that.

http://www.youtub...Ate3Itjs

Sep 22, 2011
(cont..)

protection from religious discrimination by the other churches should not be also involve governmental jurisdiction for enforcement of that prejudice.

I personally feel that anyone who discounts religion as a whole
loses out on a paradigm that teaches that material things do not make you happy, that satisfaction comes from inside, and that virtue is not always an easy thing to be true to. Religions teach you how to learn to forgive yourself -- and it is often abused by people who treat others like poo and think going to a church absolves them of asking for forgivness from those they pooed upon.

90% of people actively try to be nice to each other - and if we had to all walk into a room together to comment on an article i think we would all be more civil.

and I did not mean to imply Kevin is uneducated(FYI .. personal conversations with him prove he is ... his scientific statements are flawed but i believe that is because they go though his persoanl wrold view filter)

Sep 22, 2011
-- that did not come out right -- personal conversations with him prove he is EDUCATED ... his scientific statements i believe are flawed but i believe that is because they go though his personal world view filter)

Sep 22, 2011
By a narrow definition which applies to a few extremists, that is, young earth creation, does indeed conflict with science. But that applies to only a few fringe individuals.


Young earth creationists and those not accepting evolution. I dont think it is just a few individuals, I believe they make up a considerable part (around half?) of christians in the world, even more in the US. But I would be glad to be proven wrong.

Sep 22, 2011
Twenty-Five percent of Americans are YEC's. The number is from the 25 percent of Americans that believe the Bible is the literal word of Jehovah. ALL of them have religions that are incompatible with science. Which is not the fault of science.

Religion is not inherently incompatible with science BUT science is not compatible with ALL religions.

What the heck college did El-Nose go to anyway. Math teachers do seem to be more likely to be religious but PHYSICISTS? And how does he know? I don't remember a single college teacher OR high school teacher that discussed whether they went to church or not.

It doesn't matter how educated Kevin is he is still an ass. Anytime he stops the hit and run crap I will reconsider that.

Ethelred

Sep 22, 2011
There seems to be a new mix of science and religion going on at the moment, not one than might have been anticipated and a most potent and explosive mix it could very well turn out to be.

The first wholly new interpretation of the moral teachings of Christ for two thousand years is spreading on the web, titled: The Final Freedoms. Radically different from anything else we know of from history, this new 'claim' is predicated upon a precise and predefined experience, a direct individual intervention into the natural world by omnipotent power to confirm divine will, command and covenant, "correcting human nature by a change in natural law, altering biology, consciousness and human ethical perception beyond all natural evolutionary boundaries." Like it of no, a new religious claim testable by faith, meeting all Enlightenment, evidential, cause and effect criteria now exists. The future could get just a little more exciting that anyone expected!

Sep 22, 2011
Since all i did was agree with the article and got voted down


I got three ones for pointing out that faith deals in metaphysics while science does not, thus no conflict, and that it's possible for a scientist to be religious. Idiot trolls like FrankHubris (whom i've proven to be a liar on two separate occasions) render the ratings meaningless.

Sep 22, 2011
Religions have much more in common with politics than with science. Many actions taken from politicians are not based on sound measures (horse sense) rather meaningless and wishful fancies akin to faith and hope as practiced in many religions. The faith to perpetrate a certain measure and hoping to have done the right thing to reach a desired result.
Neither politics nor religion have anything to do with science. Science at least tends to be objective even though some scientific conclusions may be revised for the better. Politics and religion have always been, for the greates part, nonsensical and will undoubtably remain so.

Sep 22, 2011
Science is the empirical way to understand everything, spirituality is the inferential way.

Science tells you what it is, "religion" or spirituality raises the question 'Why is it that way?'.

Both are valid and whats more important is finding more ways to learn and grow, why are we always limited to a few choices. Society needs to be more accepting of the many different modus operandi; take south american religions for example, they use philosophical and religious and naturalistic behavior to interact chemically with their environment by taking hallucinogenic compounds and encoding their experience in myth or folk or shamanistic practices.

Sep 22, 2011
I got three ones for pointing out that faith deals in metaphysics while science does not


"Metaphysics" is anti-scientific...

Sep 22, 2011
Science is the empirical way to understand everything, spirituality is the inferential way.


Inference is a precursor to and is overridden by empiricism.

Science tells you what it is, "religion" or spirituality raises the question 'Why is it that way?'.


Nope, science should be used to answer both questions as accurately as possible.

Sep 22, 2011
I got three ones for pointing out that faith deals in metaphysics while science does not


"Metaphysics" is anti-scientific...


"Anti-science" is the wrong word. Metaphysics attempts to answer questions that are outside the scope and applicability of science. My point above was that since this is the case,... that religion and science deal with supposed different realms, they can't possibly come into conflict.

Newton and Leibniz wrote more on metaphysics than on science,.. Obviously they were not anti-science.

Such ideas as multi-universe theories, and an underlying reality to qm, and in general any such theories involving in principal unobservable hypothesis, are metaphysical. Any statement about the natural of reality beyond what is observationally verifiable is metaphysical.

I myself am agnostic and entirely unreligious,.., but not so immature (as FrankHubris) to be anti-religious.

Sep 22, 2011
Inference is a precursor to and is overridden by empiricism.
Nope, science should be used to answer both questions as accurately as possible.


Science can only answer things that are empirical, not everything can be empirically known.

All science says is that this is the way the universe looks to us and the only way something becomes empirical is when another person observes the same thing. We can't see outside of time or space and yet we can't disprove an outside of time or space.

There are plenty of hints in the universe that we only see things from one small perspective, like black holes or the big bang or the enormous scale of the universe from strings to galactic clusters.

Trying to 'solve' the universe with empirical science is a recipe for frustration, to do so you would have to know the entire universe, and documenting that would take exactly as much space as the universe itself. Why not try to use you mind to explore your own interaction in order to derive knowledge

Sep 22, 2011
Ethelred,
Twenty-Five percent of Americans are YEC's.


That is simply not true.

The number is from the 25 percent of Americans that believe the Bible is the literal word of Jehovah. ALL of them have religions that are incompatible with science.


That is also untrue.

Young Earth Creationists are a small, insignificant fringe.

Believing in the bible does not make someone a young earth creationist.

I believe in creation and I believe in the bible, but I do not believe in a young earth.

Your assertions are simply not valid.

Sep 22, 2011
"Anti-science" is the wrong word. Metaphysics attempts to answer questions that are outside the scope and applicability of science.


Hence "metaphysics" does not exist.

Sep 22, 2011
Science can only answer things that are empirical, not everything can be empirically known.


Assuming something can exist that cannot be empirically known it should be considered non-existent... what other choice do you have? Faith is worthless for determining reality.

Sep 22, 2011
All of you mystics, astrologers, snake worshipers, and voodoo practitioners sicken me.

If something exists it interacts with some other part of reality, if it interacts with reality it can be known. If you propose something that does not interact with anything else, and therefore cannot be known, it is equivalent to non-existence.

What existence does something have that doesn't interact with anything but itself? How can something that interacts with something other than itself "unknowable"?

Sep 22, 2011
Ethelred,
Twenty-Five percent of Americans are YEC's.


That is simply not true.
Your assertions are simply not valid.


Sorry, you're wrong... as usual

"As of 2008 a Gallup poll indicated that 36% of US adults agreed with the statement "human beings developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process.", 14% believed that "Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process." and 44% of US adults agreed with the statement "God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so."

44% of American adults agreed that "God created human beings in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years"

Again, I am so sorry you're always wrong.

Sep 22, 2011
Bunch of retards commenting in here. Sometimes I hate being an American... too many morons in this country. You have to be utterly clueless to think the Earth is less than 10,000 years old, you have to have put no thought into it whatsoever and know nothing about the natural sciences... yet 44% of adults in this damn country think this way.

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman82,
Nothing you quoted has anything to do with young earth creationism. Nothing you quoted even mentions the age of the earth.

Your comment is not just wrong, it is irrelevant to the point you purport to have made.

Sep 22, 2011
"Anti-science" is the wrong word. Metaphysics attempts to answer questions that are outside the scope and applicability of science.


Hence "metaphysics" does not exist.


CHollman, your are plainly ignorant of philosophy. The flavor of atheism, that would claim positively that god does not exist, are as irrational as those those who claim that he does.

Neither positive nor negative assertions about metaphysics can be a source of knowledge.

Science can not answer all questions that can be posed.

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman82,
Nothing you quoted has anything to do with young earth creationism. Nothing you quoted even mentions the age of the earth.

Your comment is not just wrong, it is irrelevant to the point you purport to have made.


So dumb... why do I bother. If you believe god made humans in their present form at most 10,000 years ago what do you think you are... besides an idiot?

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman, your are plainly ignorant of philosophy. The flavor of atheism, that would claim positively that god does not exist, are as irrational as those those who claim that he does.


I never made that claim.

Science can not answer all questions that can be posed.


Sure, because not all questions that can be posed are meaningful. Ask a MEANINGFUL question about something that exists and it can be answered through the scientific method... maybe not today or tomorrow, I am talking about possible as opposed to plausible.

Sep 22, 2011
Like I said, if something exists then it must, by definition, interact with something other than itself... otherwise the state of existence is equivalent to the state of non-existence. If something interacts with something other than itself then it is subject to empirical discovery and investigation.

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman82,
So dumb... why do I bother. If you believe god made humans in their present form at most 10,000 years ago what do you think you are... besides an idiot?


Not dumb. Most people have no real idea how long homo sapiens have existed. 10,000 or 100,000 years are virtually identical given the age of the earth. If you ask a stupid question, you generally get a stupid answer. The question was stupid.

To repeat, your quotations and statements have nothing to do with the age of the earth or with anyone's belief about the age of the earth. That question was not one of the foolish questions the survey you quoted asked.

Sep 22, 2011
So you think there is a significant distinction between biblical literalists who believe that god made humans in their present form (implying they do not believe in evolution) and biblical literalists who believe in a young Earth?

That's a first, I've never heard that claim before. In my experience they go hand in hand.

Sep 22, 2011
The argument goes like this:
`I refuse to prove that I exist,' says God, `for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.'
`But,' says Man, `The Babel fish is a dead giveaway, isn't it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don't. QED.'
`Oh dear,' says God, `I hadn't thought of that,' and promptly disappears in a puff of logic.
`Oh, that was easy,' says Man, and for an encore goes on to prove that black is white and gets himself killed on the next zebra crossing.
(with thanks to Douglas Adams.)

Sep 22, 2011
In my experience they go hand in hand.


CHollman - its quite clear what you're holding in your hand.

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman,
So you think there is a significant distinction between biblical literalists who believe that god made humans in their present form (implying they do not believe in evolution) and biblical literalists who believe in a young Earth?


Believing that God made man says nothing about how or when he made man. You ask questions about people's opinions on how/when God did something when God does not say, you get answers which have nothing to do with God and little to do with people's beliefs.

Choose A,B or C requires an answer. The answer probably does not match anything the respondent believes, it reflects a best effort to answer what is essentially unanswerable.

Sep 22, 2011
No one bother to comment on the fact that if something exists it must interact with something, and if it interacts with something it is detectable and observable and subject to empirical study... leaving no room for the existence of things that are not empirical...

Sep 22, 2011
CHollman, your are plainly ignorant of philosophy. The flavor of atheism, that would claim positively that god does not exist, are as irrational as those those who claim that he does.


I never made that claim.


Yes you did, you said "metaphysics does not exist".

Science can not answer all questions that can be posed.


Sure, because not all questions that can be posed are meaningful. Ask a MEANINGFUL question about something that exists and it can be answered through the scientific method....


Why does the universe exist? What is energy? When we claim an understanding of reality, we have subjected it to artificial conceptualizations. We invoke models that link observables together in a way that allows for predictions. But, the models and conceptualizations are not the reality itself. Therefore Reality as it is in itself, is unknowable. The realm of science is the more limited, phenomenal reality, which contains a subjective component.

Sep 22, 2011
No one bother to comment on the fact that if something exists it must interact with something, and if it interacts with something it is detectable and observable and subject to empirical study... leaving no room for the existence of things that are not empirical...


I attempted to answer this above. The difference between noumenal reality and phenomenal reality is that in the latter reality is made to conform to conceptualizations. We never come to know reality as it is in itself. We can only developed models that link one observable to another, and can never know what or how reality "is" in between!

Sep 22, 2011
Science tells you what it is, "religion" or spirituality raises the question 'Why is it that way?'.

Whaaaaat?? You've got that totally backwards!

Metaphysics attempts to answer questions that are outside the scope and applicability of science

Which means, it cannot answer anything at all.

religion and science deal with supposed different realms

One deals with the real world, the other deals with make-believe worlds. It is only science that can determine whether a theoretical world exists through evidentiary support and not through navel gazing or decree.

Science can only answer things that are empirical, not everything can be empirically known.

And that is a (readily acknowledged) limitation of science. But that's where the buck stops, anything else is whatever you want it to be, which makes it worthless.

Sep 22, 2011
@Deesky, I mention above that metaphysics cannot be a source of knowledge, which means YOU cannot make negative claims about it either. Obviously, it is faith based, and so while incompatible with science, it is not in conflict with science.

Soooo - if we cannot know reality - what is the point in this conversation? The whole point of science - is the exploration of our universe (reality).


I drew a distinction between phenomenal reality (in which science operates and IS knowable, obviously) to nominal reality, which is unknowable,... in order to respond to this statement by CHollman,...

....leaving no room for the existence of things that are not empirical...

Sep 22, 2011
"nominal" should read noumenal above.

Sep 22, 2011
@Deesky, I mention above that metaphysics cannot be a source of knowledge, which means YOU cannot make negative claims about it either.

Yes I can, and I have already explained why they are negative. djr makes a similar claim.

It's negative because that style of thinking opens up the individual to all kinds of nonsense, superstition and suggestion by others who would control them for whatever purpose (monetary, political, radicalization, anti-scientific).

Of course there are degrees of this influence but it certainly can drive gullible people to ultimately act against the interests of science and reason and even themselves.

A critical thinker would not fall prey to the same kind of suggestibility and manipulation.

Sep 23, 2011
It is unknowable [noumenonl reality] (which to me means it does not exist),...


Your above statement is simply illogical. You are invoking faith and belief that if something is unknowable as it is in itself, it does not exist. The phrase "as it is in itself" means 'apart from being conceptualized by mind'. This distinction is made because the act of obtaining scientific knowledge conforms reality to subjective concepts and models which are NOT the Reality itself,... our knowledge of Reality, phenomenal reality (as opposed to Noumenal reality) is based on a conceptual structure supplied by mind.

It is valid to suppose that there must be an underlying reality,... thus use of belief and faith. As mentioned metaphysics cannot be a source of (scientific) knowledge, however it can be a source of belief or faith that is not groundless although not to the standards of scientific knowledge.

Sep 23, 2011
,... In fact the scientific revolution which quantum theory brought forth, as a break from "classical physics" were due to a-priori intuitive concepts getting in the way of scientific progress! As Feynman Inc said, 'no one understands quantum theory',... that is to say, no one has an intuitive understanding of the underlying reality in the quantum realm.

Your arrogance is the result of naiveté. I love science to and zero religious faith myself, but I must acknowledge that science cannot answer all valid questions. Even though we cannot know for certain wrt metaphysical questions, it is still valid to form such beliefs based on what IS known.

Sep 23, 2011
That is simply not true.
Yes it is.

That is also untrue.
Also yes it is.

Young Earth Creationists are a small, insignificant fringe.
Try and find a Southern Baptist that ISN'T a YEC. I did not pull those numbers out of my ass.

Believing in the bible does not make someone a young earth creationist.
Believing in the Bible as the literal and perfect word of Jehovah most certainly does.

I believe in creation and I believe in the bible, but I do not believe in a young earth.
Then you are not one of the 25 percent that believe the Bible is the perfect, non-contradictory, literal and exact word of Jehovah. Which is what a Fundamentalist Christian does.

Your assertions are simply not valid.
You really don't have a clue.>>

Sep 23, 2011
Nothing you quoted has anything to do with young earth creationism. Nothing you quoted even mentions the age of the earth.
Now that isn't even close to being honest with yourself. It was EXACTLY a young Earth without evolution which is YEC. Lying to yourself like that. Why do you do it?

Most people have no real idea how long homo sapiens have existed.
Most people are ignorant as that pole showed.

10,000 or 100,000 years are virtually identical given the age of the earth.
Bullshit. It is a full order magnitude and it is VERY significant within any discussion about YECs. And wrong in any case as Homo Sapiens are closer to 150,000 years old.

To repeat, your quotations and statements have nothing to do with the age of the earth or
Bullshit vs.>>

Sep 23, 2011
Young Earth Creationists are a small, insignificant fringe.

Try and find a Southern Baptist that ISN'T a YEC. I did not pull those numbers out of my ass.


You did pull those numbers out of your ass as you usually do. Your statements are simply made up. I know many Southern Baptists and I do not know any who believe in a young earth.

Then you are not one of the 25 percent that believe the Bible is the perfect, non-contradictory, literal and exact word of Jehovah. Which is what a Fundamentalist Christian does.


How would you know about fundamentalism or Christianity? I believe in God and I believe in the fundamental principles set forth in the Bible. But I am not a young earth creationist. I live in the bible belt, grew up in a fundamental Christian church -- none of which, by the way, believed in a young earth -- and I have never met a young earth creationist.

You just make up stuff which has no basis in reality.

Sep 23, 2011
44% of American adults agreed that "God created human beings in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years"
Which is Young Earth Creationism and if you really must bury your head in the sands of ignorance like this I will add in more farther down.

Believing that God made man says nothing about how or when he made man.
But within 10,000 years and as we presently are does. Do try to deal with what was actually said.

you get answers which have nothing to do with God and little to do with people's beliefs.
Only they didn't do that. Please reread the question that was asked.

Choose A,B or C requires an answer.
Actually is doesn't. I am a complete pain for people that make poles with silly options as I only give accurate answers and refuse to choose any particular option if nones fit the correct answer.>>

Sep 23, 2011
best effort to answer what is essentially unanswerable.
Horse manure. That question was answerable for YEC's and indeed a very large percentage of Americans are such.

Now for a little more reality than Dogbert is comfortable with.

http://pewforum.o...als.aspx

33 percent of American surveyed said they believed the the Bible is the literal word of God. And there is no way to do that without being a YEC as there is that 7 days bit. Which means YOU are not a literalist though you have consistently refused to make what your position clear you have now said you don't think the Earth is young. Can't think that a be a literalist.>>

Sep 23, 2011
I get the feeling you think you have to be literalist and have to believe that Jehovah is responsible for every step of the development of all life but you can't actually accept it fully. The way you evade questions suggests that you are deeply conflicted and don't want to admit to yourself that you have problems with the actual wording in Genesis.

Any time you want to clear this up you are free to do so. You have evaded every opportunity by either scarpering off or making specious excuses. I am beginning to suspect that you are not being disingenuous with US but are doing so with yourself.

How would you know about fundamentalism or Christianity?
By being an American that actually reads things and met people. I was raised Catholic and I do NOT need to be a Fundamentalist to have a clue as to how they think. I have been debating with them for a decade.

I believe in God and I believe in the fundamental principles set forth in the Bible.
Not if you think the world is old.>>

Sep 23, 2011
But within 10,000 years and as we presently are does.


Such a question is basically not answerable. It combines gestimates of the number of years homo sapiens has existed along with a contradiction of the biblical record.

People who answered "yes" doubtless had a notion that homo sapiens have existed for a short time geologically and doubtless elided over the biblical inaccuracy in the question in order to provide an answer.

Sep 23, 2011
I live in the bible belt, grew up in a fundamental Christian church -- none of which, by the way, believed in a young earth
Then they aren't literalists.

and I have never met a young earth creationist.
Nonsense, Kevin is a YEC, breadhead is, Yellowdart is and 25% of Americans are. Southern Baptists are YECs in the vast majority of cases. And the poles support me on this. So does their organization.

You just make up stuff which has no basis in reality.
Reality what a concept. Here is a bit in this Southern Baptist resolution from 1982

http://www.sbc.ne...p?ID=967

Therefore, be it RESOLVED, That the Southern Baptist Convention in session in New Orleans, Louisiana, June 1982, express our support for the teaching of Scientific Creationism in our public schools.
Which is NOTHING BUT YEC. So the Southern Baptists don't agree with what you claim they believe. Sorry but reality is not in your favor on this. As usual.

Ethelred

Sep 23, 2011
Ethered,

You continue to conflate fundamentalism with young earth creationism despite clear differences which have been repeatedly expressed to you. You just want there to be many young earth creationists so you invent them as needed.

Reality does not conform to your desires nor does your dislike of Christianity cause Christians to believe the conflated ideas you attribute to them.

Young earth creationism is a small fringe group. Fundamental belief in the God of Abraham is composed of a very large group of people.

Sep 23, 2011
Such a question is basically not answerable.
A refusal to deal with reality on your part does not make the question unanswerable.

It combines gestimates of the number of years homo sapiens has existed
Not guesstimates. Actual measurements of a variety of radioactive elements and other unfortunately less reliable techniques BUT they all dovetail into a fairly solid idea of when. It could be earlier but not much later. Way more the 100,000 years.

along with a contradiction of the biblical record.
Which disproves the Bible. Lots of things do. Heck the Bible contradicts itself on far more than it should if it is to be called the inerrant of a perfect god.

People who answered "yes" doubtless had a notion that homo sapiens have existed for a short time geologically
You really do have a desperate need to evade the truth on this. Why is that?>>

Sep 23, 2011
Ethered,
It combines gestimates of the number of years homo sapiens has existed along with a contradiction of the biblical record.

Which disproves the Bible.


How does asking a question which conflicts with the Bible disprove the Bible? Have you abandoned all pretense of rationality?

Sep 23, 2011
doubtless elided over the biblical inaccuracy in the question in order to provide an answer.
No. They gave the answer they believed. Of course you could actually look into this instead of make up shit and call it shinola as you are doing. I have checked. Many times including just this morning.

Now I do need some sleep so I recommend that you actually look into this. You could start with the Dover Trial or perhaps a few more poles with different wordings. Or you could just look at those sites I linked to. Or you could look at the vast efforts being made by large numbers of people to force Creationism into public schools in one form or another. Texas and Kansas aren't the only trying to do that.

You continue to conflate fundamentalism with young earth creationism despite clear differences which have been repeatedly expressed to you.
Which is an opinion limited to you. Not most of the Fundamentalists. They aren't going to change to fit your desires.

Ethelred

Sep 23, 2011
CHollman, your are plainly ignorant of philosophy. The flavor of atheism, that would claim positively that god does not exist, are as irrational as those those who claim that he does.


I never made that claim.


Yes you did, you said "metaphysics does not exist".


So you think that the statement that everything is physical and metaphysical doesn't describe anything is equivalent to the assertion that god does not exist?

You're confused. I said that if something exists it is physical, because if something exists it interacts with reality and can be empirically discovered and examined. I never said god does not exist. You are making assumptions and putting words in my mouth. If god exists it is a physical entity that interacts with reality and therefore is empirical.


Sep 23, 2011
How does asking a question which conflicts with the Bible disprove the Bible?
THE ANSWER does. Humans evolved. Still do. That is against Fundamentalist principles.

And no you are not the expert on REAL Fundamentalists. You seem to insist on changing them into something you find more accepting of reality then is the actual case.

It is not my fault that YOU are NOT a Fundamentalist. Calling yourself one is like calling a person that thinks Jesus is his personal savior a Buddhist. The world does not agree with you on this. REAL Fundamentalists don't agree with you. The Southern Baptists don't agree.

All of them agree with me on this. You could ask Kevin. He will agree with me. You are not a Fundamentalist and are either without a clue or being disingenuous.

Ethelred

Sep 23, 2011
Science can not answer all questions that can be posed.


Sure, because not all questions that can be posed are meaningful.


Why does the universe exist?


That very well may be a meaningless question.

What is energy?


Energy is fully defined by its properties. I'm interested in what kind of an answer you're looking for, probably a nonsensical one.

As for the rest of what you said in that post, if something exists it interacts with reality, if it interacts with reality it is discoverable and therefore knowable. If it is both discoverable and knowable it is subject to empirical investigation. Nothing that you would call "metaphysical" exists... metaphysics deals with concepts, not things that exist in physical reality. A concept is an emergent phenomenon of consciousness, which is itself an emergent phenomenon of biology/chemistry/physics.

Sep 23, 2011
And no you are not the expert on REAL Fundamentalists. You seem to insist on changing them into something you find more accepting of reality then is the actual case.

The world does not agree with you on this. REAL Fundamentalists don't agree with you. The Southern Baptists don't agree.

All of them agree with me on this. You could ask Kevin. He will agree with me. You are not a Fundamentalist and are either without a clue or being disingenuous.

Ethelred


Agreed, I have family in Alabama, I have spent a lot of time in the "bible belt"... almost everyone down there that I know is a YEC.

Sep 23, 2011
Someone tell me what the difference is between the existence of something that does not interact with anything but itself and the non-existence of that same thing.

Then, someone tell me how an object that interacts with something other then itself can be fundamentally "unknowable", "undetectable", or not subject to empirical analysis.

If anyone can answer both of these questions sufficiently I will submit that metaphysical things may exist. Otherwise, anything described as "metaphysical" simply does not exist.

Sep 23, 2011
Someone tell me what the difference is between the existence of something that does not interact with anything but itself and the non-existence of that same thing.

None.

someone tell me how an object that interacts with something other then itself can be fundamentally "unknowable", "undetectable", or not subject to empirical analysis.

That can be possible if any signals the object generates become undetectable at some point in time (like other galaxies/clusters and CMB will become in many billions of years time due to the expansion of the universe).

Otherwise, anything described as "metaphysical" simply does not exist.

By definition, metaphysics is beyond normal physics, for which there is no evidence. You could call string theory metaphysics, but there are still good reasons to pursue it and one day it may prove to be physics (or not).

Sep 23, 2011
Someone tell me what the difference is between the existence of something that does not interact with anything but itself and the non-existence of that same thing.

Then, someone tell me how an object that interacts with something other then itself can be fundamentally "unknowable", "undetectable", or not subject to empirical analysis.

If anyone can answer both of these questions sufficiently I will submit that metaphysical things may exist. Otherwise, anything described as "metaphysical" simply does not exist.


I attempted to above, but you ignore or fail to understand basic epistemology. All that has to be shown to answer both questions simultaneously, is to show that you can't reproduce Reality as it is in itself, without causing It to be conformed to subjective constructs. Wiki epistemology for a start, at least put in an effort.

Sep 23, 2011
By definition, metaphysics is beyond normal physics, for which there is no evidence. You could call string theory metaphysics, but there are still good reasons to pursue it and one day it may prove to be physics (or not).


Since you brought up string theory I will use it as an example. Let's say superstring theory pans out and allows for some predictions and observations. The LHC produces a bunch of new particles that can be explained well using string theory. Wonderful. This won't mean there are actually little vibrating strings!!! Strings in this sense are merely mathematical constructs, the right number of variables to allow observations to be linked consistently. That is all.

Likewise in the standard model, an electron is modeled as a zero volume point particle or a wave. It is neither in Reality,... it is merely modeled as such!! Don't confuse the models with the actual reality.

Sep 23, 2011
Someone tell me what the difference is between the existence of something that does not interact with anything but itself and the non-existence of that same thing.


None.


Glad we agree with this at least.

That can be possible if any signals the object generates become undetectable at some point in time (like other galaxies/clusters and CMB will become in many billions of years time due to the expansion of the universe).


Okay, and if something is fundamentally unknowable then the difference between its existence and its non-existence is zero.

By definition, metaphysics is beyond normal physics, for which there is no evidence.


Belief in something without evidence is called faith, and faith is not a virtue.

Sep 23, 2011
Since you brought up string theory I will use it as an example. Let's say superstring theory pans out and allows for some predictions and observations. The LHC produces a bunch of new particles that can be explained well using string theory. Wonderful. This won't mean there are actually little vibrating strings!!! Strings in this sense are merely mathematical constructs, the right number of variables to allow observations to be linked consistently. That is all.

Likewise in the standard model, an electron is modeled as a zero volume point particle or a wave. It is neither in Reality,... it is merely modeled as such!! Don't confuse the models with the actual reality.


Sure, what does that have to do with what we are talking about? Are you conflating metaphysics with conceptualization?

Sep 23, 2011
Belief in something without evidence is called faith, and faith is not a virtue.

Sure, but there is a difference between baseless beliefs and scientific hypotheses.

Sep 23, 2011
Since you brought up string theory I will use it as an example. Let's say superstring theory pans out and allows for some predictions and observations. The LHC produces a bunch of new particles that can be explained well using string theory. Wonderful. This won't mean there are actually little vibrating strings!!! Strings in this sense are merely mathematical constructs, the right number of variables to allow observations to be linked consistently. That is all.

Likewise in the standard model, an electron is modeled as a zero volume point particle or a wave. It is neither in Reality,... it is merely modeled as such!! Don't confuse the models with the actual reality.


Sure, what does that have to do with what we are talking about? Are you conflating metaphysics with conceptualization?

I'm trying to get it across to you that there is 'something' existent beyond what we can know,... in vain it appears.

Sep 23, 2011
I'm trying to get it across to you that there is 'something' existent beyond what we can know,... in vain it appears.


Can know currently? Can know given the limitation of our biology? Or can know on a fundamental level?

Sep 23, 2011
metaphysics cannot be a source of knowledge, which means YOU cannot make negative claims about it either. Obviously, it is faith based
Because as it does not in fact exist, you novelists can claim it to be anything you want.

Christ Nou I thought you were cleansed of this bullshit. There IS no metaphysics only physics. Philos were selling Authority to people who assumed that the smartest people in the world should have all the answers, and the Enlightenment taught them that this knowledge did not come from god.

No metaphysical theory ever proved anything, never explained anything, and never lasted much beyond the gen of pedants who concocted it. It was - and IS - propaganda for specific social classes not accessible by other forms.

Science is more confident, more mature now. It knows that only IT has the tools to explain anything and everything. Even the sociopolitical expediency of religion and its equally evil dwarf twin, Philosophy.

Sep 23, 2011
I'm trying to get it across to you that there is 'something' existent beyond what we can know,... in vain it appears.
NO there is NOT. Not even your imagination.

Sep 23, 2011
I'm trying to get it across to you that there is 'something' existent beyond what we can know,... in vain it appears.


Then you are on the wrong website.

Sep 23, 2011
Christ Nou I thought you were cleansed of this bullshit. There IS no metaphysics only physics. Philos were selling Authority to people who assumed that the smartest people in the world should have all the answers, and the Enlightenment taught them that this knowledge did not come from god.


As I stated at least twice above, metaphysics cannot be a source of knowledge. It was philosophy, in particular Kant's epistemology (relevant to science (wiki it)) who demonstrated this resoundingly IMO. In doing so, he made distinction between Phenomenal reality and Noumenal reality, which I believe is purely logical conclusion (if understood), and even relevant to interpretations of qm. To think that TOU could posses all of reality in your mind is naviete in the extreme.

It doesn't appear that I'm going to be understood here.

Sep 23, 2011
You are understood. You are just wrong.

Ethelred

Sep 23, 2011
As I stated at least twice above, metaphysics cannot be a source of knowledge. It was philosophy, in particular Kant's epistemology (relevant to science (wiki it)) who demonstrated this resoundingly IMO. In doing so, he made distinction between Phenomenal reality and Noumenal reality, which I believe is purely logical conclusion (if understood), and even relevant to interpretations of qm. To think that TOU could posses all of reality in your mind is naviete in the extreme.
Nice spaghetti-speak. Ok, name one thing metaphysical which cannot be explained scientifically. Don't say love or spirituality as they can both be explained scientifically as wholly physiological responses. And don't say morality or altruism because these can be explained completely in terms of tribal dynamics.

Sep 23, 2011
For instance
It is neither in Reality,... it is merely modeled as such!! Don't confuse the models with the actual reality.
Strings and particles ARE real things as they interact with other things we consider real. They make up for instance the big rock which lands on your toe, which emphatically demands you accept it's realness.

String and particle are however words and as such are only gross and inexact representations of real things, the natures of which can only be ascertained experimentally and mathematically.

Philosophy possesses neither experiment nor mathematics in it's toolbox. Instead it substitutes word calculations to define things, and inaccessible realms for them to exist in. The allure of words is a philos fatal weakness. This leads me to believe that the irrational preference for words over mathematics in describing the world, indicates a developmental or endemic imbalance within the human brain itself.

If so, this too will eventually yield to scientific inquiry.

Sep 23, 2011
Ethelred,
How does asking a question which conflicts with the Bible disprove the Bible?


THE ANSWER does. Humans evolved. Still do. That is against Fundamentalist principles.


So if someone asks a question that conflicts with evolution, that question invalidates evolution?

OK. Do you think humans evolved from kangaroos? That question conflicts with evolution theory, therefore, according to your illogic, it must invalidate evolution.

To return to the question which you say invalidates the bible because it conflicts with the bible, the third question in your quoted poll was "God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so."

Since God did not create man in his present form, the question conflicts with the bible and cannot be properly answered. Asking a loaded question in a poll does not invalidate the bible.

Sep 23, 2011
"Philosophy possesses neither experiment nor mathematics in it's toolbox. Instead it substitutes word calculations to define things, and inaccessible realms for them to exist in. The allure of words is a philos fatal weakness. This leads me to believe that the irrational preference for words over mathematics in describing the world, indicates a developmental or endemic imbalance within the human brain itself."

The mathematician is not as reliable as the tools he employs. That the frequent use of mathematics does not sharpen one's ability to discern reality is evident in the large number of mathematicians as members of contending faiths. You will not often find philosophers compartmentalizing their skills in the presence of dogma. Mathematics bestows only the very narrow skill of its own type of reasoning, and not very much in the way of critical reasoning.

Sep 23, 2011
Since God did not create man in his present form, the question conflicts with the bible and cannot be properly answered. Asking a loaded question in a poll does not invalidate the bible.
I'm sorry, let me just briefly jump in here... In what form did he create man in then, DB? was he more kangaroo-like perhaps?

I know - you're referring to Adam before the fall. But Satan never did anything without gods knowledge and tacit approval - how could he? God made Adam and then field-tested him. His creation failed the stress test, proving he was flawed from the beginning.

Your god only chose to punish Adam and eve for HIS own mistakes, a theme which continues throughout the goodbook.

Sep 23, 2011
Mathematics bestows only the very narrow skill of its own type of reasoning, and not very much in the way of critical reasoning.
Well THATS not true. Numbers are the best tool we have with which to describe physical phenomena. Math is spectacularly successful at this, irrespective of the people who are wielding it.

Philos only use the fuzzy nature of words to obscure their uselessness in describing things with them. This could be called at the very most 'entertainment'.

And because their word calcs are so worthless in describing the world, they need to have a fuzzy meta-world where their words, in their minds anyway, can make some sense.

Sep 23, 2011
I'm trying to get it across to you that there is 'something' existent beyond what we can know,... in vain it appears.


Then you are on the wrong website.
I don't know frank, philos can be as much a threat to science as their religionist brethren. They give the impression that things can be understood without doing the necessary work that science requires.

They can discourage legitimate inquiry into things which they claim are beyond the reach of science. I think it's good to do battle with them.

Sep 23, 2011
TheGhostofOtto 1923,
I'm sorry, let me just briefly jump in here... In what form did he create man in then, DB? was he more kangaroo-like perhaps?


Why are you answering for Ethelred?

Ethelred made a very illogical statement -- that asking a question about something when that question contains fallacies about the subject of the question, disproves the subject of the question.

I just pointed out his flawed reasoning.

Are you agreeing with Ethelred? Do you think asking a loaded question about something disproves that something?

Sep 23, 2011
Ethelred made a very illogical statement -- that asking a question about something when that question contains fallacies about the subject of the question, disproves the subject of the question.

I just pointed out his flawed reasoning.

I believe he said that the ANSWER invalidates the subject.

I just pointed out your flawed reading comprehension.

Sep 23, 2011
Deesky,
I believe he said that the ANSWER invalidates the subject.


You construct a poll where answering the poll proves that there is no God?

As I said, it is flawed reasoning.

If you think you can prove that God does not exist by asking a loaded question, you lack reasoning skills.

Sep 23, 2011
I've never seen so much Olympic grade back-paddling. You can try to reframe the original exchange as much as you like, but that exchange is recorded here for all to see:

dogbert: How does asking a question which conflicts with the Bible disprove the Bible?


Ethelred: THE ANSWER does. Humans evolved. Still do. That is against Fundamentalist principles.


paddle away...

Sep 23, 2011
Deesky,
I've never seen so much Olympic grade back-paddling. You can try to reframe the original exchange as much as you like, but that exchange is recorded here for all to see:


No back peddling here. It was Elbert's assertion. I merely pointed out that you can't prove something by asking a flawed question. You can't.


Sep 24, 2011
So if someone asks a question that conflicts with evolution, that question invalidates evolution?
I did not say that. Why are so many on this site afflicted with change what was actually said disease?

I pointed out that is the ANSWER to that particular question that disproves Fundamentalist ideas of how the world actually is. ANSWER does not in any way look even remotely like QUESTION so why did you ask TWICE?

So if someone asks a question that conflicts with evolution, that question invalidates evolution?
That is an idiotic question as you already no the neither I nor anyone else has such a belief.

That question conflicts with evolution theory, therefore, according to your illogic, it must invalidate evolution.
You REALLY can't read. THE ANSWER to the question not the question.

Really this is even idiotic than your claim that most most Fundamentalists aren't YEC's when they most definitely are.>>

Sep 24, 2011
I am beginning to wonder if maybe you are about 13 years old. The way you stubbornly try to change what I said to something else is at the rubber and glue level. I don't like bringing age into it but is getting hard to think of you as even remotely mature.

To return to the question which you say invalidates the bible
I said NO SUCH THING. YOU even managed to quote it correctly and then changed it when you used your idiotic words. Idiotic is the only thing I call that sort incompetent behavior.

My jaw is dropping in amazement at the level of incompetence you are showing. This is not a matter of opinion as I did NOT SAY THE QUESTION disproved Fundamentalism. And I pointed that out in the previous post.

the third question in your quoted poll was "God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so."
Yes and that is wrong but many believe it AND it is a YEC belief. >>

Sep 24, 2011
You seem to be trying to support yourself with that utterly bogus claim that there was little difference between 10,000 and 100,000.

Since God did not create man in his present form,
Most likely no god was involved at all but the evidence is clear that humans did not start out as we presently are.

the question conflicts with the bible and cannot be properly answered
No. The question does not conflict with the Bible nor does the YEC beliefs conflict with it so the YEC's answered said they believed that was the case. However the evidence is clear. They and the Bible are wrong.

Asking a loaded question in a poll does not invalidate the bible.
There was no loaded question and the question itself does not invalidate the Bible and I never made that claim AND I pointed that out. You even quoted it.

The WORLD invalidates the belief and the Bible on this. The question and the answers given to the pole only shows that 33 percent of American are YECs.>>

Sep 24, 2011
Bloody hell that was STUPID post you made.

Learn how to read. Learn the difference between QUESTION and ANSWER and EVIDENCE. A logic class or two might go a long way in fixing your inability to reason. Or it might get you an F.

No wonder you believe the Bible is the word of Jehovah. You and the mythical Jehovah are both incapable of reason. You can learn. Myths can't but that is something you will discover if you ever learn the art of critical thinking.

All this utter rubbish because you don't want accept the fact that so many Americans have chosen to believe in nonsense like a Young Earth.

Ethelred

Sep 24, 2011
Nice spaghetti-speak

Yes, I don't doubt that everything I've written above appears to be incomprehensible to one ignorant enough to have written the following;

Philos only use the fuzzy nature of words to obscure their uselessness in describing things with them. This could be called at the very most 'entertainment'.


philos can be as much a threat to science as their religionist brethren. They give the impression that things can be understood without doing the necessary work that science requires.


There are several branches of philosophy that are incontestably related to and are vital to science,.. logic, epistemology, linguistics,.. to name a few obvious ones. There is even a 'philosophy of physics' with many books/papers written on the subject. Every major physicist has pursued philosophical questions. For you to disparage "philos" so flippantly shows you are more motivated to argue than understand what my point is above,...

Sep 24, 2011
I'm not advocating metaphysics,... I'm not trying to get you to believe in anything metaphysical. In fact I've stated four times that it cannot be a source of knowledge. Further I'm not saying that knowledge acquired through science is not real; phenomenal reality is real.

In fact the exact OPPOSITE of trying to get you to accept the metaphysical world, is to caution you not to fall victim to false metaphysical interpretations of what scientific theories state. In fact far from being "religious like" in my thought, I'm am more rigorous wrt standards of ascertaining what is true knowledge about Reality, than some flippant science fan-boy.

One must understand what is Real vrs what is a useful concept for acquiring relations between observations. People on this site actually think that a concept like time is a real physical entity despite never observing it apart from it's application in relating things. Strings are just a means of representing degrees of freedom required,...

Sep 24, 2011
People on this site actually think that a concept like time is a real physical entity despite never observing it apart from it's application in relating things.
Time is as real as a punch in the nose.

Physically it is an integral part of Space-Time and since those equations work, that is they produce numbers that fit reality, it is reasonable to assume that the theory is a very close analogue of reality at worst.

What many people seem to have a problem with is Time as a property of the Universe. They tend to want something of vast mystical import. Then there was that idiot that was trying to call time an ordered series of events. I say idiot because he was unable to comprehend that he was producing the exact same results and that it was indistinguishable results wise from the concept of time as a property of the Universe.

There is no reason for the way Universe works EXCEPT that is has to all work together or it would break. Unless you have a god handy.

Ethelred

Sep 24, 2011
,... to construct a consistent theory relating observables. To think that there are actual Real strings existent independently from such a conceptualization of reality, IS itself a faith, albeit perhaps a useful one. The multi-verse theory (wrt qm) IS metaphysical philosophy because it's unobservable in principal, and explains away the "wave-function collapse".

It is a fallacy to presume that if reality cannot pass through and be rationalized by mind, it does not exist. This is idealism and radical philosophy.

The branch of Philosophy, Logic, is deductive, and as such is more certain in it's derivations than science, as science is inductive and relies on a degree of certainty.

Sep 24, 2011
Ethelred, I don't disagree with your above post, instead what I do is to qualify it. Time is a real element of the phenomenal world. Mind is an active element of the phenomenal world as well, by definition; reality as experienced. Therefore since Time is not a thing discovered, but rather only every used in relating things, it's existence must come from mind, in ordering experience.

The element of phenomenal reality that is epistemological delimits Phenomenal reality from Noumenal reality (reality as it "IS", unconceptualized). IMO, this is just logic, and justifies my statement that we can't know everything of Reality. You may disagree, fine.

Purely logically one would have to believe that a one-to-one correspondence between reality and some intellectual conceptual structure could be made consistently. This is not certain as there is a gulf between GR and QM,.. and QM had to abandon intuitive understanding to make progress.

Sep 24, 2011
Therefore since Time is not a thing discovered,
It is a thing just as much as left to right, back and forth, up and down are. And yes we did discover space. Of course that was a long ago ancestor that first managed independent movement.

but rather only every used in relating things
No. The THINGS themselves are related to each by within time. Time is not dependent relating things, its the other way around as it is a property of the Universe.

it's existence must come from mind, in ordering experience.
Boy is that one wrong. The mind, which is nothing but an emergent property of the chemistry of the brain, experiences time. Indeed the chemistry is dependent on time thus time does come from mind as mind MUST come from SPACE-TIME and the other properties of the Universe.

The element of phenomenal reality that is epistemological delimits
Word Wuze.

IMO, this is just logic,
Based on your faulty assumptions above.>>

Sep 24, 2011
justifies my statement that we can't know everything of Reality.
Not realated to anything that proceeded. Black Holes show that we can't know everything of reality.

You may disagree, fine.
As long as you use faulty premises and word wuze that is intended to obscure your point I will continue to do so.

Purely logically one would have to believe that a one-to-one correspondence
Would you like to make a one to one correspondence between the Real Numbers and the Irrational numbers and you might remember that you had a problem with that the last time.

This is not certain as there is a gulf between GR and QM
Which again does not follow from anything else you said. It follows from the math and the evidence. And frankly I suspect that it is QM where the greatest problems arise.

and QM had to abandon intuitive understanding to make progress.
Intuition evolved from mostly macroscopic events. And GR isn't intuitive either.

Ethelred

Sep 24, 2011
Ethelred,
Since God did not create man in his present form, the question conflicts with the bible and cannot be properly answered. Asking a loaded question in a poll does not invalidate the bible.

No. The question does not conflict with the Bible nor does the YEC beliefs conflict with it so the YEC's answered said they believed that was the case. However the evidence is clear. They and the Bible are wrong.


The question does conflict with the bible record. God did not make man in his present form. The question is loaded designed so that any response is wrong. The whole poll is loaded.

the question conflicts with the bible and cannot be properly answered

No. The question does not conflict with the Bible


Why do you even argue about the bible if you are so ignorant of its contents? Or do you really know what you are saying is contrary to the bible but you don't care that your argument is false?

cont..

Sep 24, 2011
Adam and his immediate descendents lived close to 1000 years. The bible does not indicate the limits of man's life at that time, but it was much longer than it is now. Then God set a limit of 120 years on our life. That is a substantial change from the form of man initially. Therefore the question "Did God create man in his present form ..." is a loaded question and cannot be answered from a multiple choice list.

The whole poll you quoted is similarly designed to elicit useless responses from which you present your incorrect assertion that fundamental belief in the bible means that the believer must be a young earth creationist.

The bible does not say how old the universe and the earth is -- only that God created the heaven and the earth in the beginning.

I was raised in a fundamental church, the Church of Christ. I attended a college run by a fundamental church, the Church of Christ.

cont...

Sep 24, 2011
The Church of Christ is about as fundamental as it gets. And I have never met a young earth creationist. I have attended many other churches. I work daily with many people who attend many other churches. I still have met no one anywhere who is a young earth creationist. That is because young earth creationism is a fringe group which has nothing to do with fundamental belief in God and the bible.

I have never met a member of the flat earth society either, because they are a fringe group of few individuals.

You are simply wrong when you equate fundamental belief with young earth creationism. I have pointed this out to you many times and you continue to conflate fundamental belief with young earth creationism.

You obviously have an agenda and do not mind inconsistencies and illogic in order to advance your agenda. I will continue to point out that your assertions are false.

Sep 24, 2011
branches of philosophy that are incontestably related to and are vital to science,.. logic, epistemology, linguistics,.. to name a few obvious ones.
These 'obvious ones'... Logic is word math, a crude approximation of the real thing because it uses fuzzy WORDS and not numbers. Epistemology is a big fat word for a worthless intellectual gymnastic, as any working scientist will tell you. Linguistics is a soft SCIENCE, legitimately pursued only by those who do experiment.
There is even a 'philosophy of physics' with many books/papers written on the subject.
Which is routinely deemed WORTHLESS by scientists. Re hawking, feinman, Dawkins et al.

Philos through the ages have had to grab bits and pieces of science and other disciplines in order to falsely add some substance to their field. When they were actually contributing to science they were scientists, not philos. When they were inventing dasein and immanence and similar crap they were wasting our time ie doing philosophy.

Sep 24, 2011
Therefore since Time is not a thing discovered,

It is a thing just as much as left to right, back and forth, up and down are. And yes we did discover space. {...} independent movement.

Are you paying attention? Time and space are things experienced, yes,... NOT discovered as independent entities themselves. By definition 'experience' involves a mind so since a Time particle or field has never been discovered independently of it's application in relating things, time must be considered a subjective component of phenomenal reality. It can be defined as anything,.. x number of cycles of a cesium atom, and compared to other events, but it is a relation between events. Naturely relations between observations give conceptual insight into reality.

String theory invokes 10 spacial dimensions,... the question wether there are actual spacial dimensions as intuitively understood beyond what we observe is metaphysical. They are degrees of freedom, extra variables.

Sep 24, 2011
No. The THINGS themselves are related to each by within time. Time is not dependent relating things, its the other way around as it is a property of the Universe.


Show me where a time particle or field or physical entity has been discovered that is responsible for time. If Time is a property of the universe rather than a conceptual relation of events, you should be able to. Of course all you can do is give examples of it's use. And proclaim dogmatically and religiously that its a real entity.

This is why I entered this thread, because I don't care for science fan-boys desparaging others beliefs systems, when their world view is replete with them.

The higgs field is proposed to have caused mass,... are you saying one should propose some field to account for time? Maybe space too, and causality?,.. won't work for qm.

Sep 24, 2011
Show me where a time particle or field or physical entity has been discovered that is responsible for time. If Time is a property of the universe rather than a conceptual relation of events, you should be able to. Of course all you can do is give examples of it's use. And proclaim dogmatically and religiously that its a real entity.


I agree with you, I consider time to be a human invented concept. The referent in physical reality is change. Change occurs, we perceive this change in sequence, we label this "time".

Sep 24, 2011
Are you paying attention? Time and space are things experienced, yes,... NOT discovered as independent entities themselves.
Wow have you got this backwards.
the question wether there are actual spacial dimensions as intuitively understood beyond what we observe is metaphysical.
'Intuitively' is not a scientific word. Intuition has no place in the pursuit of knowledge. String theory need not be 'intuitively' understood to be real. If it is valid then it is real whether we can understand it or not.

No nether realm is needed.

Sep 24, 2011
I agree with you, I consider time to be a human invented concept. The referent in physical reality is change. Change occurs, we perceive this change in sequence, we label this "time".
Whether you agree with the wizard or not, time in science can be represented objectively. It can be assigned values and used to explain and predict phenomena independent of our experience of it. It exists whether we exist to experience it or not. It existed before we did and will continue to exist after we are gone. It's existence has nothing to do with US.

Sep 24, 2011
Sigh ... an article payed by scientology or the watch tower?
Science and religion simply dont mix, they are contradictions...
No scientology has nothing to do with science -.-

Sep 24, 2011
Nou exposes his religious roots:
Show me where a time particle or field or physical entity has been discovered that is responsible for time. If Time is a property of the universe rather than a conceptual relation of events, you should be able to.
So since we don't have a handful of particles to show you, or since scientists are still struggling to define the fundamental nature of this or that, this means that the metaphysical must exist? God is not required but his house must still be there?

Time is what it is. The more science learns about it the more they know about it. THEY are the only ones who can explore what time is. No need to jump to any silly conclusions or poetic extrapolations.

Sep 24, 2011
This is why I entered this thread, because I don't care for science fan-boys desparaging others beliefs systems, when their world view is replete with them.
Your belief system offers nothing of value. Nothing testable. Nothing repeatable. Nothing useful. Only unwarranted coonclusions.
The higgs field is proposed to have caused mass,... are you saying one should propose some field to account for time? Maybe space too, and causality?,.. won't work for
Maybe. Would you be disappointed if it did? Perhaps because it was counterintuitive??

Sep 24, 2011
I agree with you, I consider time to be a human invented concept. The referent in physical reality is change. Change occurs, we perceive this change in sequence, we label this "time".
Whether you agree with the wizard or not, time in science can be represented objectively. It can be assigned values and used to explain and predict phenomena independent of our experience of it. It exists whether we exist to experience it or not. It existed before we did and will continue to exist after we are gone. It's existence has nothing to do with US.


Yes, change existed before we existed to experience change... we call change in sequence "time"... it's just a name we assigned to the physical reality of change.

Sep 24, 2011
Yes, change existed before we existed to experience change... we call change in sequence "time"... it's just a name we assigned to the physical reality of change.
And so what makes time itself a Human invented concept? Time continues whether anything changes or not.

Sep 24, 2011
Otto, logic is a branch of philosophy. Epistemology is the philosophy of knowledge. Obviously both are vital to science. Brushing aside anything other than science as meaningless flim-flam shows you are ignorant of the basic foundations of science itself.

Those who make the same mistake of dogmatically proclaiming knowledge, whether positive existence or non-existence,.. of things beyond what is empirically demonstrable, rely on faith and metaphysical belief.

It {time} exists whether we exist to experience it or not. It existed before we did and will continue to exist after we are gone.


Amen, now let's all bow and give sacrament and praise the watch gods. Spoken like a true evangelists....

Sep 24, 2011
Yes, change existed before we existed to experience change... we call change in sequence "time"... it's just a name we assigned to the physical reality of change.
And so what makes time itself a Human invented concept? Time continues whether anything changes or not.


Time is just a word, a word that points to a concept. The concept involves ordered change in physical reality. What is real, what exists, is the physical reality, the matter/energy, the constituents of existence. Time does not exist as anything but a concept used to refer to ordered change in things that do exist... that is why you can't show me time directly, you can only demonstrate the concept by pointing to things that do exist, a cesium atom for example, and stating that from one configuration of reality to the next "time" has passed... when what really happened is simply that a component of reality changed, and that component of reality is real.

Sep 24, 2011
It can be assigned values and used to explain and predict phenomena independent of our experience of it

How are numbers assigned as time in practice? By comparing the number of cyclical events contiguous to the number of another event. A relation between those events. Nature doesn't care, about comparing things. No comparisons are bothered to be made without humans around.

Sep 24, 2011
Time continues whether anything changes or not.


How would you know? Change always occurs... as far as we know we cannot stop it, even at absolute zero.

Without change, there is no concept time because it cannot be determined (in fact without change there is nothing, existence becomes equivalent to non-existence)

Sep 24, 2011
Nou exposes his religious roots:
Show me where a time particle or field or physical entity has been discovered that is responsible for time. If Time is a property of the universe rather than a conceptual relation of events, you should be able to.
So since we don't have a handful of particles to show you, or since scientists are still struggling to define the fundamental nature of this or that, this means that the metaphysical must exist? God is not required but his house must still be there?

Time is what it is. The more science learns about it the more they know about it. THEY are the only ones who can explore what time is. No need to jump to any silly conclusions or poetic extrapolations.


So, the answer is don't know,...you have faith in it's physical existence, and are merely awaiting the Scientific second coming? You say "Time is what it is",... hmm, sounds like the ontological argument for the existence of god!

Sep 24, 2011
This is why I entered this thread, because I don't care for science fan-boys desparaging others beliefs systems, when their world view is replete with them.

Your belief system offers nothing of value. Nothing testable. Nothing repeatable. Nothing useful. Only unwarranted coonclusions.

I am entirely anti-religious, and my belief system is a rigorous analysis of knowledge inorder to interprete physical theories wrt to the nature of reality.

Sep 24, 2011
Purely logically one would have to believe that a one-to-one correspondence between reality and some intellectual conceptual structure could be made consistently. This is not certain as there is a gulf between GR and QM,.. and QM had to abandon intuitive understanding to make progress.

Which again does not follow from anything else you said. It follows from the math and the evidence..

The point was that there is no proof that such a one-to-one correspondence can be made consistently, no evidence... there is only faith that this can be done. A rational faith, yes, but a faith in which science relies on.

It is remarkable that with all that is known about reality, we can't even begin to say what Consciousness IS. It's hard to disparage ones belief system when we can't even begin to understand our own consciousness, ...how it could come about from matter or even what IS it. Arrogance and the naiveté seem to have all the answers though.

Sep 24, 2011
It is remarkable that with all that is known about reality, we cannot even begin to say what Consciousness IS.


Yes we can, consciousness is an emergent property of complex biology/chemistry/physics. The problem is not that we don't know what it is, it's that people want there to be more to it than there is.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness can best be defined as the ability to collect (through sensation) and recall (through memory) information about reality. That's all it is, and it is the result of complex physical arrangements and interactions, which are all determined by physical law. Consciousness is a byproduct of physical law in a given manifestation, as is EVERYTHING.

Sep 24, 2011
How would you know? Change always occurs... as far as we know we cannot stop it, even at absolute zero.
Right... And so you get sucked into one of those countless eddies where philos love to dwell where endless arguments can proceed about 'what is the meaning of...' and somesuch; using of course WORDS which can never inform adequately about physical phenomena. Although after a few dozen posts or hours of discussing or books by KANT or Schopenhauer, you're exhausted and willing to mistake confusion for progress.
Without change, there is no concept time because it cannot be determined (in fact without change there is nothing, existence becomes equivalent to non-existence)
Words words words. The CONCEPT is immaterial. Ask a scientist.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness can best be defined as the ability to collect (through sensation) and recall (through memory) information about reality.
'Best' sir? I would ask someone else with an appropriate degree who would quote an unimpeachable authority, who has already come up with the 'Best'. Except further down the bookshelf we find an equally erudite (but long dead) authority whose 'best' is something quite different.

Science will study 'consciousness' using all the relevant tools, and come up with some answers. Most likely they will recommend you discard the word entirely as it is misleading and devoid of useful content.

They might tell you that the WORD is useless in describing anything meaningful about the human condition. They might even snicker.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness can best be defined as the ability to collect (through sensation) and recall (through memory) information about reality.


No, those processes are physiological in nature. They occur even in dreams,... sometimes we're even conscious that we're dreaming. I'm speaking of awareness, consciousness. It is different altogether than this causes that,..

That's all it is, and it is the result of complex physical arrangements and interactions, which are all determined by physical law. Consciousness is a byproduct of physical law in a given manifestation, as is EVERYTHING.

...though I'm not saying it's metaphysical,.. but consciousness (being "aware") has a different character to it, and since science can't even begin to say what it IS much less how it works, ...

Sep 24, 2011
I am entirely anti-religious, and my belief system is a rigorous analysis of knowledge inorder to interprete physical theories wrt to the nature of reality.
Which, unfortunately, has always failed miserably and embarrassingly in the face of scientific inquiry. You guys talk and talk and talk and then some scientist comes along and makes you look like idiots. Philo interpretations have demonstrated their impotence. They are invariably the product of the imagination.

Philos, like Religionists, are constantly going back and reinterpreting what their prophets and their holy books said, in light of scientific discoveries. Or they simply deny them, like any fundamentalist. You do this yourself Nou. You cite something Kant said and try to twist and stretch it to fit some new scientific theory.

But as Kant had no knowledge of that theory his relevance to it could at most be purely coincidental, no matter how much you pull and tug. With compelling mental imagery to guide you of course.

Sep 24, 2011
It is remarkable that with all that is known about reality, we cannot even begin to say what Consciousness IS.


Yes we can, consciousness is an emergent property of complex biology/chemistry/physics. The problem is not that we don't know what it is, it's that people want there to be more to it than there is.


No Sir, we have absolutely NO idea what or how it comes about, absolutely none. Some idea of how memory is stored and other physiological processes are understood to some level, but consciousness is entirely different.

Penrose thinks it has something to do with quantum level events, others just proclaim consciousness would spontaneously arise if software is programmed the right way. No one knows.

Sep 24, 2011
Penrose thinks it has something to do with quantum level events, others just proclaim consciousness would spontaneously arise if software is programmed the right way. No one knows.
-YET. You've already assigned it to some astral plane.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness can best be defined as the ability to collect (through sensation) and recall (through memory) information about reality.
'Best' sir? I would ask someone else with an appropriate degree who would quote an unimpeachable authority, who has already come up with the 'Best'. Except further down the bookshelf we find an equally erudite (but long dead) authority whose 'best' is something quite different.

Science will study 'consciousness' using all the relevant tools, and come up with some answers. Most likely they will recommend you discard the word entirely as it is misleading and devoid of useful content.

They might tell you that the WORD is useless in describing anything meaningful about the human condition. They might even snicker.


Everything you just said hasn't happened yet,.. it is more science faith. As a fan-boy you have a religious faith that everything will be explained. Consciousness is different because it is what is used to understand.

Sep 24, 2011
Penrose thinks it has something to do with quantum level events, others just proclaim consciousness would spontaneously arise if software is programmed the right way. No one knows.
-YET. You've already assigned it to some astral plane.


I have, where?

Your ridiculous attitude about philosophy is non-sensical and pointless. You know nothing about Kant. If you did you would realize He was the one who finally put the final nail in the coffin of metaphysical knowledge. He did this through an analysis of knowledge,.. what is knowledge,.. how do we obtain it, .. what is valid knowledge. I invoke such ideas to point out that science should not over reach in it's claim of knowledge. Now, go find something shiny to play with.

Sep 24, 2011
Again, people wanting it to be more than it is. It is an emergent phenomenon of physical law... I don't know what more you're looking for, because that is what it is.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness is what happens when the ability to perceive reality is combined with the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences. Perception of reality is an entirely physical process, the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences is an entirely physical process... there is no magic here, there is only physical law bringing forth complexity with unique properties, as it often does.

If an AI were sufficiently advanced in terms of what outlined above it would become conscious... consciousness is an emergent phenomenon... it happens when the right conditions are met.

Sep 24, 2011
Again, people wanting it to be more than it is. It is an emergent phenomenon of physical law... I don't know what more you're looking for, because that is what it is.


I agree, ...er or at least I have faith that it can be so explained by physical law. That's the point, you and I have faith of this, (not knowledge of it as it may not be possible),... even though science hasn't a clue where or how to even begin. Yet, you and Otto disparage others (including scientists) for their faith of a reality beyond what is possible to become aware of. You think they're easy targets only because you think you can prove metaphysical reality does not exist. As I stated far above you can't for the same logical reasons they can't prove it exists. The correct logical attitude is polite and humble agnosticism.

Sep 24, 2011
Just as life happens when the right conditions are met, just as fusion and fission happen when the right conditions are met... there is nothing special about consciousness, we just think there is because we are and other things aren't.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness is what happens when the ability to perceive reality is combined with the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences. Perception of reality is an entirely physical process, the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences is an entirely physical process... there is no magic here


It's that simple is it? Two physiological process cause consciousness to just happen? You're right it's not magic, ... magic isn't that vague.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness is what happens when the ability to perceive reality is combined with the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences. Perception of reality is an entirely physical process, the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences is an entirely physical process... there is no magic here


It's that simple is it? Two physiological process cause consciousness to just happen? You're right it's not magic, ... magic isn't that vague.


Yes... look at things with consciousness, they posses these abilities. Look at this without consciousness, they do not posses one or more of these abilities... simple. Of course I did not comment on the degree to which relations must be formed between memories, I don't know that... if you're asking the details no of course I don't know the details, but the generalities are simple, and are sufficient to understand what consciousness is and why it exists.

Sep 24, 2011
@CHollman, You still haven't told me anything that is not already obvious. The physiological process you mentioned can and are being studied in great detail, yet even with full knowledge of each,.. consciousness is still several orders of magnitude more mysterious. You're not appreciating the significance of the thing.

Some things become out dated ideas because it becomes realized they were the result of better understood phenomenon,... this isn't the case with consciousness as we are "aware" of it. It makes USE of those physiological processes you mentioned but is not equated with there combination.

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness is what happens when the ability to perceive reality is combined with the ability to store, recall, and relate experiences.


Do you content that people suffering from amneisa must be unconsciousness? The ability to recall has been blocked, yet consciousness remains.

Noumenon is correct. We plainly do not understand consciousness.

Sep 24, 2011
Do you content that people suffering from amneisa must be unconsciousness? The ability to recall has been blocked, yet consciousness remains.


Only select memories are lost, not even close to a majority either. You may forget someones name or details of your past but you still remember what a person is and what the word "past" means. This ridiculous example serves only to illustrate that you are not fit to discuss this.

Noumenon is correct. We plainly do not understand consciousness.


You don't, and we in the general sense are only lacking an understanding of the details, which are not necessary to understand what consciousness is.

Sep 24, 2011
consciousness is still several orders of magnitude more mysterious. You're not appreciating the significance of the thing.


I would say you want it to be more than it is and you are confusing the generalities with the details.

S It makes USE of those physiological processes you mentioned but is not equated with there combination.


Without any of them consciousness is not possible. With all of them and to significant enough degrees it is. It's that simple.

Without the ability to gain knowledge of reality through perception consciousness is not possible. Without the ability to store and recall those perceptions and to form relations between them consciousness is not possible. With them consciousness is possible. That is the generality of consciousness, it is an emergent byproduct of these properties... the details are irrelevant to understand what it is.

Sep 24, 2011
CHollman 82,
You don't [understand consciousness]


I don't. And you don't either.

When you don't know the details, you don't know the subject.

Sep 24, 2011
CHollman 82,
You don't [understand consciousness]


I don't. And you don't either.

When you don't know the details, you don't know the subject.


So if I were to tell you that I know that at some point between the first week of pregnancy and the birth of the child consciousness develops in the fetus and so abortions are benign prior to the first week at least since the blastocyst is not conscious it would be an illogical conclusion since I don't know the details, since I don't know exactly when consciousness arises?

You don't need to know all of the details to understand something and make correct statements about it. I don't need to understand exactly what degree one must be able to form relations between saved information about reality to be conscious in order to tell you what consciousness is.

Sep 24, 2011
Everything you just said hasn't happened yet,.. it is more science faith.
Let me try to explain, with words, the difference between faith and confidence. I have confidence in science because it has consistently demonstrated the ability to explain how the world works.

You have faith in philosophy despite the fact that it has failed to explain how the world works. See the difference?
As a fan-boy you have a religious faith that everything will be explained.
I always tend to support the winning team.
Consciousness is different because it is what is used to understand.
Consciousness is an unscientific nonsense term which describes nothing, and is only used to obfuscate and inflammagate, and flusterize. I do wish you would stop using it.

Think I'll get my wish?

Sep 24, 2011
Consciousness is different because it is what is used to understand.
'Consciousness' 'different' 'understand'. Define these terms scientifically please.

Let me start you out:
"Consciousness is a term that refers to a variety of aspects of the relationship between the mind and the world with which it interacts. It has been defined as: subjectivity; awareness; the ability to experience feelings; wakefulness; having a sense of selfhood; or the executive control system of the mind. Despite the difficulty of definition, many philosophers believe that there is a broadly shared underlying intuition about what consciousness is."

-And please, while youre at it, define scientifically all the 'important' words in the above paragraph, without referring to or using each other to do so.

Take your time.

Sep 24, 2011
Let me take a shot:
"'Consciousness' is a 'term' that 'refers' to a 'variety' of 'aspects' [ASPECTS?] of the 'relationship' 'between' the 'mind' [MIND??] and the 'world' with which it 'interacts'. It has been 'defined' as: blahblahblah..."

OK lets try 'mind':
"The concept of mind is understood in many different ways by many different traditions, ranging from panpsychism and animism to traditional and organized religious views, as well as secular and materialist philosophies."

Oh jeez. OK lets skip ahead:
"Jose M.R. Delgado writes, "Aristotelian thought has permeated most Occidental philosophical system until modern times, and the classification of man's function as vegetative, sensitive, and rational is still useful. In present popular usage, soul and mind are not clearly differentiated and some people, more or less consciously, still feel that the soul, and perhaps the mind, may enter or leave the body as independent entities."

-SURE IT CAN.

Sep 24, 2011
Let me state another point. Spirituality is not the same as religious

Sep 24, 2011
Oh hey, theres a 'science of mind' section:
"Psychology is the scientific study of human behaviour, mental functioning, and experience; noology, the study of thought...Historically, psychology differed from biology and neuroscience in that it was primarily concerned with MIND rather than brain."

In this whole section the word 'mind' is only mentioned once, as an afterthought? But as we all know, psychoblah has now been replaced by EVOLUTIONARY psychology, as it considers the actual structure of the brain and relies wholly on the experimental analysis of it:

"(EP) is an approach within psychology that examines psychological traits such as memory, perception, or language from a Darwinian evolutionary perspective. It seeks to explain how many human psychological traits are evolved adaptations, that is, the functional products of natural selection or sexual selection..."

-And NOWHERE in this whole section is the word 'mind' used.

CONTINUED

Sep 24, 2011
And SO

With no functional definition of the archaic and obsolete word 'mind' in the current scientific lexicon, we cannot define the similarly archaic and obsolete word 'consciousness'.

On to the trash heap of inventive and poetic nonsense words of history it goes. Right on top of the word 'soul'.
Let me state another point. Spirituality is not the same as religious
Excuse me. Right on top of the word 'spirituality'.

Sep 24, 2011
Excuse me. Right on top of the word 'spirituality'.

Would you call shamans or bushmen religious? But definitely highly spiritual, and is evident the cause of that is intoxication of natural products. More arguments to support religion as a chemical imbalance in the brain?

Sep 24, 2011
Otto, your arrogance is measured by the depth of your ignorance. Only plain ignorance could possibly give one such confidence to proclaim they understand consciousness while so many great men have struggle to understand how it could be,... and to proclaim philosophy is meaningless and useless. What you have demonstrated is merely a profound disinterest.

I see FrankHubris rated me 25 ones in a row. Clearly some of my points deserved a two at least. Once again FrankHubris proves himself a drive-by troll. No matter.

Sep 24, 2011
You say "Time is what it is",... hmm, sounds like the ontological argument for the existence of god!
Only to people who are tickled to use pretentious and pedantic words like 'ontological'. Onto the rubbish heap.

Re your astral plane
I have, where?
Wherever you spout stuff like this:
Neither positive nor negative assertions about metaphysics can be a source of knowledge.
Stating that metaphysics is real when it is not.
The difference between noumenal reality and phenomenal reality is that in the latter reality is made to conform to conceptualizations. We never come to know reality as it is in itself.
And the fiddling with this spaghetti NEVER explained ANYTHING.
We can only developed models that link one observable to another, and can never know what or how reality "is" in between!
-Which is why scientists chuckle when you guys show up. Like Feynman used to.
http://www.youtub...3eEA54DE
-Or this guy
http://www.youtub..._uwxMS9k


Sep 24, 2011
And of course dawkins and krauss
http://www.youtub...index=69

Sep 24, 2011
Otto, your arrogance is measured by the depth of your ignorance.
Ah the old 'You dont know what I know so you must be wrong' gambit. I have supplied quotes, reference, videos from respected scientists. You provide rhetoric and esoterica.

Let me rebut with Dr Hawking. "Philosophy is dead."
http://www.telegr...ead.html

-These gentlemen all know far more than you do about both philosophy and science. They arrogantly proclaim that philosophy is irrelevant. I agree with them, arrogantly.

Sep 24, 2011
Otto's Achilles heel is his own self admission:
"I am mathless."
Otto's greatest strength is ironical:
Accusing his contrahents of sophistry.
I do not have to know how to design a car in order to drive one little poet. Although I am pretty good at fixing them and have learned to appreciate the engineering involved by doing so.

Sep 24, 2011
I like Otto, smart guy... I tend to agree with you far more than disagree with you anyway. The fundamental problem is that of compressing incredible complexity into a single word... what the word "consciousness" refers to is not a real thing, it is a collection of thousands of things, some real and physical, some conceptual, some relational, and some fictional.

Sep 24, 2011
In as attempt to grasp CHollman82:

All that which is labeled metaphysical is an attempt at a description to describe all that which you allowed yourself to label and describe physically through whatever measure (mutual interaction?) you apply.

When you reach a point where whatever measure you apply can no longer distinguish between the two labels - the metaphysical and the physical - , the purpose, of all labeling - if you are ever incline to categorize labeling to include metaphysical labeling (math) - is served.


I understand the purpose of the word metaphysical in informal discourse to refer to that which is not physical, though it would seem a synonym for conceptual.

Rating? I see no rating here. Ever. My broken browser is a blessing - considering all the words lost over something I never saw.


The rating system should be done away with, not in my lifetime will the combination of anonymity and conflict produce non-biased evaluation.

Sep 24, 2011
You can translate Otto's linguistic expressions into expressions of math/logic.
can you translate dog barks into French/pig latin?
"Territory vs. Map"
Territory vs tralfamador.

Sep 24, 2011
Time continues whether anything changes or not.

Prove it.

Sep 24, 2011
Would you call shamans or bushmen religious? But definitely highly spiritual...

The difference between spirituality and religion is organization and numbers. They're both based on flawed superstitious thinking.

Sep 24, 2011
Time continues whether anything changes or not.

Prove it.
Let me ask you a serious question. What do you mean by 'prove'? For that matter what do you mean by 'change'? And what do you think I meant by it?

Sep 24, 2011
Time continues whether anything changes or not.

Prove it.
Let me ask you a serious question. What do you mean by 'prove'? For that matter what do you mean by 'change'? And what do you think I meant by it?


Change means change... you cannot stop it, if you did it would be eternal and their would be no difference between existence and non-existence. Time is defined ONLY by change, it is a concept, not a physical entity.

What do you think change means?

Sep 24, 2011
Time continues whether anything changes or not.

Prove it.
Let me ask you a serious question. What do you mean by 'prove'? For that matter what do you mean by 'change'? And what do you think I meant by it?


Change means change... you cannot stop it, if you did there would be no difference between existence and non-existence. Time is defined ONLY by change, it is a concept, referring to how many increments of some arbitrary change occur until a different change occurs. The time it takes for the second hand on my clock to advance one position (a change) is defined as 9,192,631,770 vibrations of a Cesium-133 atom (a different change). Time is not a physical entity, it is a concept used to relate changes to other changes.

What do you think change means?

Sep 25, 2011
Meant to edit, sorry.

Sep 25, 2011
Let me ask you a serious question. What do you mean by 'prove'?

I mean, you made a comment with absolute certitude and so I asked you to prove that it's true. If you cannot, then at best it's an opinion (a metaphysical one at that).

For that matter what do you mean by 'change'?

I think it means what anyone would think it means - things/entities which aren't perpetually static.

And what do you think I meant by it?

You seem to be asking me a lot of questions, including for me to be clairvoyant WRT to your intended meaning. How about you answer your own questions and then attempt to prove your assertion, or at least justify it.

Sep 25, 2011
I mean, you made a comment with absolute certitude and so I asked you to prove that it's true. If you cannot, then at best it's an opinion (a metaphysical one at that).
The term 'proof' is only properly applied scientifically in mathematical theorms.
I think it means what anyone would think it means - things/entities which aren't perpetually static.
Are you saying locally or universally? At what scale might this change occur? A Bose-Einstein condensate changes very little - does this affect time locally?

Would a photon brought to an absolute stop be considered changing still? It is possible to do this you know. An electron on a fixed trajectory is only changing it's position relatively. Is time different for it?

Are there equations in physics which include time which do not include elements of 'change'? As I'm not versed I cannot answer this.

There - more questions for you to choke on.

Sep 25, 2011
I meant 'chew on'.
Time is defined ONLY by change
Prove it.

Sep 25, 2011
Time is defined ONLY by change
Prove it.


Time is defined by the difference between one configuration of the universe/reality and another. If change did not occur time would be a meaningless concept, it would have no referent in physical reality.

Sep 25, 2011
Ok let's address this 'methodically'.

"Time in physics is defined by its measurement: time is what a clock reads. It is a scalar quantity and, like length, mass, and charge, is usually described as a fundamental quantity. Time can be combined mathematically with other physical quantities to derive other concepts such as motion, kinetic energy and time-dependent fields."

Uh huh. So time is a 'fundamental unit.'

"A SET of fundamental units is a set of units for physical quantities from which every other unit can be generated."

But is time always dependent on other FUs?

"For instance, time and distance are related to each other by the speed of light, c, which is a fundamental constant."

-Hmmm. But wait-

"One could eliminate any two of the metre, kilogram and second by setting c and h to unity or to a fixed dimensionless number."

-So it looks like time can 'exist' independent of 'change' just by declaring c and h dimensionless.

That was easy.

Sep 25, 2011
Time is defined by the difference between one configuration of the universe/reality and another.
Sorry CH nowhere in the wiki scientific sections for 'time' or 'fundamental unit' is the term 'configuration' used. For that matter neither is 'universe/reality'.

This is funny though:
"Two contrasting viewpoints on time divide many prominent philosophers."

-Obviously added by feverish philos eager to retain some semblance of relevance. What - only 2? Does that include all the nuances and subsets of opinion from current and long-dead philos, most of whom were math- and science-illiterate mostly because they considered them irrelevant?

Ha. -is what hawking says as he stumbles over philo detritus in search of useful wiki info. Figuratively speaking.

Sep 25, 2011
-So it looks like time can 'exist' independent of 'change' just by declaring c and h dimensionless.

That was easy.


None of this matters, without change time is meaningless. (period)

This is obvious. Time is a measurement of change... without it time is nothing, an empty concept referring to nothing.

Sep 25, 2011
Time is a measurement of change... without it time is nothing, an empty concept referring to nothing.
This is a pronouncement. A proclamation. Using non-specific WORDS which do not correspond to anything scientific, anything quantifiable, anything able to be represented by values in formulae.

What are we to make of this CH? Can we make a souffle out of it? Can we fold it up and make a little boat perhaps? Can we disregard it? Yes I think we can certainly do that.

And so my conclusion
-So it looks like time can 'exist' independent of 'change' just by declaring c and h dimensionless.
still stands.

Sep 25, 2011
The word you're looking for is axiom.

Time cannot exist independent of change because time is SOLELY concerned with change. Change gives time MEANING, without change time has no meaning. This is axiomatic, it is obvious... you're asking me to prove that 1 = 1.

Sep 25, 2011
There - more questions for you to choke[sic] on.

No, not really. CHollman82 has expressed by position perfectly. A position you don't seem to grasp (or accept). Nothing further can be gained in this discussion with the current participants, so I'm bowing out.

Sep 25, 2011
I kinda like the way CH used 'configuration' of the universe. Just because it makes no sense for us to attempt universal objectivity, doesn't mean that's not how it works (independent simultaneity). But, what do I know,? it just sounds neat. ;)

Very good discussion mostly; I'm glad I didn't have a chance to derail it mid-stream. Or did I?

Sep 26, 2011
Lool, I haven't even had time to read the comments yet, they are often better then the story.

Yes, science and religion mix......like an emulsion, pound them together hard enough and they will look like the same fluid.

But they are not, and eventually all emulsions break.

...mmm..for some strange reason, I'm hungry.

Sep 26, 2011
"In traditional logic, an axiom or postulate is a proposition that is not proven or demonstrated but considered either to be self-evident ... assumed to be true. Therefore, its truth is taken for granted .."

-So in the deesky/CH subset universe, the fuzzy word 'time' requires a thing they call 'change' to operate, and to them this is self-evident. But they haven't attempted to define either of these fuzzy words or cite references from the greater universe which would indicate that this is axiomatic regarding anybody else.

Otto has supplied references which indicate that SCIENTiSTS outside the D/CH universe have equations which indicate that time can exist without change.

D/CH use a logic term (axiom). Logic is wordmath which relies on fuzzy variables which cannot be quantified. Otto prefers the equations he cites which use NUMBERS and which, afterall, are the only way to say anything meaningful about the greater universe where most of us dwell.

Sep 26, 2011
Well, regardless of all this talk about the nature of time, I think most of us can agree that despite the articles claim science and religion mix about as well as oil and water and those who profess to each must maintain a cognitive dissonance to do so, whether they realize it or not.

Sep 26, 2011
Otto has supplied references which indicate that SCIENTiSTS outside the D/CH universe have equations which indicate that time can exist without change.

I'm afraid you've done no such thing (maybe you think you did in the Ottoverse).

Otto prefers the equations he cites which use NUMBERS

That's rich coming from someone who admits to having no math skills and therefore wouldn't know which numbers to believe.

Sep 26, 2011
I'm afraid you've done no such thing.
Guess you missed this:
"Time in physics is defined by its measurement: time is what a clock reads. It is a scalar quantity and, like length, mass, and charge, is usually described as a fundamental quantity. Time can be combined mathematically with other physical quantities to derive other concepts such as motion, kinetic energy and time-dependent fields."

Uh huh. So time is a 'fundamental unit.'

"A SET of fundamental units is a set of units for physical quantities from which every other unit can be generated."

But is time always dependent on other FUs?

"For instance, time and distance are related to each other by the speed of light, c, which is a fundamental constant."

-Hmmm. But wait-

"One could eliminate any two of the metre, kilogram and second by setting c and h to unity or to a fixed dimensionless number."

-So it looks like time can 'exist' independent of change.
I'll just keep repeating it instead of saying 'Did too'.

Sep 26, 2011
That's rich coming from someone who admits to having no math skills and therefore wouldn't know which numbers to believe.
I know when to defer to experts who know what they're talking about. Got any references to back up your nonsense claim that time needs change to exist? Someone besides either of you? Hint - try GOOGLE or WIKI.

Sep 26, 2011
"For instance, time and distance are related to each other by the speed of light, c, which is a fundamental constant."

This is irrelevant, without change the speed of light is meaningless, without change there is no speed, and without change time is meaningless... don't you understand?

Sep 26, 2011
I know when to defer to experts who know what they're talking about. Got any references to back up your nonsense claim that time needs change to exist? Someone besides either of you? Hint - try GOOGLE or WIKI.
Kind of a big question, not something you'd get a good answer for from google or wikipedia. Time is ill understood and as far as I am aware, the only definition we truly have for time is that it is the means by which to order the events within the universe. If there was no change, ie no events, then time would have no meaning.

Sep 26, 2011
They don't mix, but they don't necessarily conflict, either. Nothing new there. Religion certainly has value for many individuals, whether it be the situation they find themselves or their combination of cognitive abilities.

It is somewhat interesting to me that so many scientists consider themselves 'spiritual.' I didn't know so many scientists were 19 year old girls, because that was the last time I heard someone describe themselves in such a useless way. "I am open to the idea that there might be things in the Universe that we don't understand." - Well, la di freakin DA! Why do we need two words for ignorance?