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Author Topic:   The "science" of Miracles
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 451 of 671 (827900)
02-04-2018 2:13 PM
Reply to: Message 450 by Phat
02-04-2018 2:07 PM


Re: Consensus
Phat writes:

... you are campaigning to get science to distance itself from any vocabulary hinting at such.


First, I don't have that kind of power. Nothing I say is going to have any effect whatsoever on science.

Second, science has already distanced itself from that vocabulary. I have asked repeatedly for any evidence that science uses the word "miracle". I don't think you'll find any.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 450 by Phat, posted 02-04-2018 2:07 PM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 452 by Phat, posted 02-04-2018 3:03 PM ringo has responded

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 10970
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.2


Message 452 of 671 (827901)
02-04-2018 3:03 PM
Reply to: Message 451 by ringo
02-04-2018 2:13 PM


Re: Consensus
So that's essentially your whole point, then? That Percy chose the wrong word to define an unexplainable event that appeared to contradict natural and scientific laws?

Are Miracles Possible ~ Some good discussions here.

My conclusion is that people---scientists included---can use whatever word they want. There is no definite rule that says otherwise.


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
Paul was probably SO soaked in prayer nobody else has ever equaled him.~Faith :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 451 by ringo, posted 02-04-2018 2:13 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 454 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 10:38 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 17574
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 453 of 671 (827903)
02-04-2018 4:07 PM
Reply to: Message 449 by ringo
02-04-2018 1:10 PM


Re: Consensus
ringo writes:

You're tailoring those "needs" to your preferred definition of miracle, which is incorrect.
...
The point of the Miracle of the Sun is that the Catholic Church calls it a miracle while scientists do not.
...
The only thing that makes an event a miracle is somebody attributing it to unnatural causes.
...
Miracles are religion, not science.

You're just recycling arguments you raised previously that have already been rebutted. You need responses to the rebuttals, not repeats of the original arguments.

From your Message 451 to Phat:

ringo in Message 451 writes:

Second, science has already distanced itself from that vocabulary. I have asked repeatedly for any evidence that science uses the word "miracle". I don't think you'll find any.

Another recycled argument.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 449 by ringo, posted 02-04-2018 1:10 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 455 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 10:43 AM Percy has responded

    
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 454 of 671 (827912)
02-05-2018 10:38 AM
Reply to: Message 452 by Phat
02-04-2018 3:03 PM


Re: Consensus
Phat writes:

So that's essentially your whole point, then? That Percy chose the wrong word to define an unexplainable event that appeared to contradict natural and scientific laws?


It's important to understand that it's only "inexplicable" to the people who call it a miracle.

Phat writes:

My conclusion is that people---scientists included---can use whatever word they want.


Indeed. And scientists don't use the word "miracle".
This message is a reply to:
 Message 452 by Phat, posted 02-04-2018 3:03 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 455 of 671 (827913)
02-05-2018 10:43 AM
Reply to: Message 453 by Percy
02-04-2018 4:07 PM


Re: Consensus
Percy writes:

You're just recycling arguments you raised previously that have already been rebutted.


Your "rebuttals" have been addressed. You're just refusing to accept reality - scientists do not use the word "miracle". You refuse to discuss what (some) people actually do all "miracles".
This message is a reply to:
 Message 453 by Percy, posted 02-04-2018 4:07 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 456 by NoNukes, posted 02-05-2018 11:22 AM ringo has responded
 Message 468 by Percy, posted 02-05-2018 3:15 PM ringo has responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 10865
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 456 of 671 (827916)
02-05-2018 11:22 AM
Reply to: Message 455 by ringo
02-05-2018 10:43 AM


Re: Consensus
Your "rebuttals" have been addressed. You're just refusing to accept reality - scientists do not use the word "miracle". You refuse to discuss what (some) people actually do all "miracles".

The paradigm of science is that all caused events have a natural cause. By definition that would mean that there are no such things as miracles. Now scientists cannot prove that there are no miracles. But science does have an impressive track record of uncovering causes so that it is not merely on faith that scientist assume that things they cannot currently understand will turn out to have a natural cause.

It is not a coincidence that we don't find floating objects in a situation where the floating cannot be explained by the forces we already know to exist in nature. That's why I suggested that a couple of folks with ordinary tools and unlimited access could figure out whether a floating man was a miracle or not. By and large, the accounts we have for miracles of that type all exist in texts whose accuracy is impossible to verify.

So what should we make of the word 'miracle' then? Is a destitute single mom winning the lottery a miracle? Is a computer a modern miracle of science? Is remission of cancer a miracle? Yes, those things all fit one of the dictionary definitions of the word, but none of those things are miracles in the strict sense that this discussion should be about. If I am wrong about that, let me know because then I will understand that the topic is not one I am interested in.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 455 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 10:43 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 457 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 11:36 AM NoNukes has responded

    
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 457 of 671 (827917)
02-05-2018 11:36 AM
Reply to: Message 456 by NoNukes
02-05-2018 11:22 AM


Re: Consensus
NoNukes writes:

So what should we make of the word 'miracle' then? Is a destitute single mom winning the lottery a miracle? Is a computer a modern miracle of science? Is remission of cancer a miracle?


The word "miracle' is used by the Catholic Church in an official capacity, attributing unusual events to a a supernatural cause. Presumably, other religious groups use the word similarly.

The word is also used colloquially, as in your examples. The events are certainly not "inexplicable". At best they are unexpected.

Calling something a "miracle" is entirely subjective, which is why scientists don't do it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 456 by NoNukes, posted 02-05-2018 11:22 AM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 458 by Tangle, posted 02-05-2018 11:58 AM ringo has responded
 Message 459 by Phat, posted 02-05-2018 12:10 PM ringo has responded
 Message 467 by NoNukes, posted 02-05-2018 1:39 PM ringo has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5969
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 1.7


(3)
Message 458 of 671 (827918)
02-05-2018 11:58 AM
Reply to: Message 457 by ringo
02-05-2018 11:36 AM


Re: Consensus
ringo writes:

Calling something a "miracle" is entirely subjective, which is why scientists don't do it.

Nope. If a miracle - like the ones we've posited and you've refused to discuss - happened, they would be thoroughly open to objective analysis.

The reason why scientists don't use the word miracle is because they've not yet found one.

But what if.....


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 457 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 11:36 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 460 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 12:10 PM Tangle has responded
 Message 462 by Phat, posted 02-05-2018 12:13 PM Tangle has responded

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 10970
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.2


Message 459 of 671 (827919)
02-05-2018 12:10 PM
Reply to: Message 457 by ringo
02-05-2018 11:36 AM


Arguments From The Internet
Since this debate/discussion is going nowhere, I gleaned similar arguments from the internet. Some of them are further food for thought:

DO MIRACLES REALLY VIOLATE THE LAWS OF SCIENCE?

Dr.Timothy McGrew writes:

The great skeptic David Hume presented the world with a false dilemma when he tried to pit reported miracles against the laws of nature. Science tells us what nature does when left to itself; miracles, if they occur at all, occur precisely because nature is not left to itself. Believers and skeptics agree that there is a stable causal order, a normal course of events in which virgins do not become pregnant and dead men stay dead. And precisely because they are agreed on this point, it cannot be a significant piece of evidence against the occurrence of miracles. A river must flow, as one of Hume’s contemporaries pointed out, before its stream can be diverted. Some conception of the ordinary course of nature is required for us even to make sense of the notion of a miracle, which otherwise could not be recognized for what it is.

Science itself places no limits on what may happen when nature is not left to itself. It can neither demonstrate that nature is always left to itself—that the physical universe is “causally closed”—nor legislate what might occur if it is not. Scientists may have their personal opinions on these matters; in fact, they often do, and sometimes they count on their scientific expertise to give weight to those opinions. But that involves stepping out of their own fields of specialization and into the realm of philosophy. And in that arena, one’s having a degree in zoology or microbiology does not, per se, entitle one’s opinions to any particular deference.

Your argument is nothing more than an informed opinion.

Granted you have framed the parameters of how science should think and of what science should or should never conclude.

While acknowledging your argument, I don't find it as the final word.


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
Paul was probably SO soaked in prayer nobody else has ever equaled him.~Faith :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 457 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 11:36 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 461 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 12:12 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 460 of 671 (827920)
02-05-2018 12:10 PM
Reply to: Message 458 by Tangle
02-05-2018 11:58 AM


Re: Consensus
Tangle writes:

If a miracle - like the ones we've posited and you've refused to discuss - happened, they would be thoroughly open to objective analysis.


If scientists analyzed it, they'd propose explanations. By definition, it would not be "inexplicable" and it wouldn't be considered a miracle.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 458 by Tangle, posted 02-05-2018 11:58 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 464 by Tangle, posted 02-05-2018 12:32 PM ringo has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 461 of 671 (827921)
02-05-2018 12:12 PM
Reply to: Message 459 by Phat
02-05-2018 12:10 PM


Re: Arguments From The Internet
Phat writes:

Granted you have framed the parameters of how science should think and of what science should or should never conclude.


If that isn't the way science does think, give us some examples.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 459 by Phat, posted 02-05-2018 12:10 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 10970
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.2


Message 462 of 671 (827922)
02-05-2018 12:13 PM
Reply to: Message 458 by Tangle
02-05-2018 11:58 AM


Re: Consensus
Tangle writes:

The reason why scientists don't use the word miracle is because they've not yet found one.

But what if.....

Ringo seems to argue that true science would never resort to using the M word. My counter-argument is that scientists speak as individuals and not as a group. Thus, some may use the M word and others would stick with currently unexplainable....

Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
Paul was probably SO soaked in prayer nobody else has ever equaled him.~Faith :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 458 by Tangle, posted 02-05-2018 11:58 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 463 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 12:16 PM Phat has responded
 Message 465 by Tangle, posted 02-05-2018 12:36 PM Phat has not yet responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 14910
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 463 of 671 (827923)
02-05-2018 12:16 PM
Reply to: Message 462 by Phat
02-05-2018 12:13 PM


Re: Consensus
Phat writes:

... some may use the M word and others would stick with currently unexplainable....


Show us some examples.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 462 by Phat, posted 02-05-2018 12:13 PM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 466 by Phat, posted 02-05-2018 12:37 PM ringo has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5969
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 1.7


(2)
Message 464 of 671 (827924)
02-05-2018 12:32 PM
Reply to: Message 460 by ringo
02-05-2018 12:10 PM


Re: Consensus
ringo writes:

If scientists analyzed it, they'd propose explanations.

And if they found no explanations, then what? Silence?

By definition, it would not be "inexplicable" and it wouldn't be considered a miracle.

You're making the mistake of assuming that objective analysis must conclude with a natural explanation.

In other words you're just doing what you've done from the start - attempt to define away a problem. Doesn't work, the flying bridge is still there hanging in the sky awaiting an explanation that can't be found in any natural process regardless of your head-in-sand approach.

It's ironic that if such things ever happened it would *only* be science that could legitimately declare it a miracle.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 460 by ringo, posted 02-05-2018 12:10 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 469 by ringo, posted 02-06-2018 10:38 AM Tangle has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5969
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 465 of 671 (827925)
02-05-2018 12:36 PM
Reply to: Message 462 by Phat
02-05-2018 12:13 PM


Re: Consensus
ringo writes:

Ringo seems to argue that true science would never resort to using the M word.

Yeh, I noticed :-)

My counter-argument is that scientists speak as individuals and not as a group. Thus, some may use the M word and others would stick with currently unexplainable....

I think we can all agree - with one pig-headed exception - that if the events we've discussed *did* happen, the overwhelming majority of human kind would call it a miracle, not just the odd scientist.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 462 by Phat, posted 02-05-2018 12:13 PM Phat has not yet responded

  
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