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Author Topic:   Immaterial "Evidence"
Straggler
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 16 of 154 (519700)
08-16-2009 12:30 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by straightree
08-16-2009 12:24 PM


Re: Why The
Its a very well stated pertinent question. The simplest and more direct answer to it, is NO. We have not any sensual capabilities to detect inmaterial entities.
OK we agree on that it seems.
If you consider that your intelligence can work on entities and concepts that do not come through your senses, then, maybe your personal experience and reasoning can lead you to believe in the existence of inmaterial entities, mainly in God. Then, it may be that you can arrive to consider that all that comes through your senses belongs to a world created by God, and then all your sensations are evidence of God.
Which god? Is the obvious question but very probably leading off topic.......
Experience and reasoning? Or bias, wishful thinking, emotional need, desire for higher purpose and a whole host of other very human and very compelling needs, wants and desires?
So, in fact is a question of all or nothing.
Maybe. But also maybe not...... I am not sure.
Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.
Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by straightree, posted 08-16-2009 12:24 PM straightree has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 25 by straightree, posted 08-18-2009 1:32 AM Straggler has replied

  
slevesque
Member (Idle past 4716 days)
Posts: 1456
Joined: 05-14-2009


(1)
Message 17 of 154 (519762)
08-17-2009 4:04 AM
Reply to: Message 14 by Straggler
08-16-2009 11:40 AM


Re: Why The
Isn't seeing someone walking on water a subjective experience ? (In that all you will have as empirical evidence will be my word for it)
Or do you define a subjective experience as an experience that excludes the physical senses ?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 14 by Straggler, posted 08-16-2009 11:40 AM Straggler has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 22 by Straggler, posted 08-17-2009 2:00 PM slevesque has replied

  
mike the wiz
Member
Posts: 4755
From: u.k
Joined: 05-24-2003


Message 18 of 154 (519772)
08-17-2009 5:46 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Straggler
07-26-2009 5:40 PM


Re: Why The
I have "evidence" that my prayers come true, because it follows that when I pray, usually their is an answer, and MOSTLY it is impressive by any person's criteria. People may deny it, but when confronted with answered prayer, I doubt they would dismiss this personal experience.
I have also felt the presence of God, the Holy Spirit. This should not "follow" given it is made up, and especially a powerful encounter. It should not follow that if I praise God in a commited way, that the Spirit should come upon me. it should not follow that I woke up one day with a different language going through my head. It should not follow that God obtained a brand new car for my sick parents when there was no hope whatsoever. (this was two days after the prayer request). It should not follow that when I had depression, the spirit of God came upon me, removed the depression, and went, in about 30 seconds. (I suffer from anxiety and depression, so it would be foolish to mention any things such as self-healing as I am well experienced in not having the power to do one bloody thing when I am depressed, other than fight off the urge to break my skull with a brick).
It should not follow that any of this FEW examples should follow if God is true.
If God is true, it should follow only if a personal God who requires the person to humble themselves before revelation, exists.
You can argue until blue in the face, but any man/woman who would reject a genuine experience, genuine prayer, genuine fellowship, is a very rare and strange person.
Kind regards, mike.
ps. All of these things, as the Gospel indicates, should follow. would you really believe that it would be a coincidence that only the things the Gospel mentions, happen to me, such as the gifts of the Spirit, fellowship, the Holy Spirit coming upon people, etc....
At times, infact even now, I would prefer no results whatsoever, in order so that I could decide for certain whether God exists or not - but guess what, there are even more testimonies than mine, and they are much more incredible, and they are true, but they are real in that they have physical consequences. You represent it as all in the mind but I tell you with 100% truth everything I have said has happened, and MORE, and can happen for you also. But God will never play it your way. Firstly, to God - you have the sinful nature, YOU must come before God, and repent, THEN you can experience this "coincidence" for yourself and see if you can reject it.
Why is it so hard to believe that if God exists, He could not get involved in His own creation, given WHO he is?
If God exists, it follows that amazing things can happen, exciting things, true things.
Edited by mike the wiz, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
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mike the wiz
Member
Posts: 4755
From: u.k
Joined: 05-24-2003


Message 19 of 154 (519773)
08-17-2009 6:09 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Straggler
07-26-2009 5:40 PM


Re: Why The
I know that you can dismiss me as crazy. Afterall, I have language in my head, and depression, etc..
That's okay. You do that. But know this - you can't win. In the end, all that matters is the truth. Deep down Straggler, you know the truth but you're trying to convince yourself otherwise. Why do you kick against the pricks. (mikey for example, being one of them )
In the end, you can come up with clever, elaborate explanations. You can come up with natural explanations, just like with animals, just like with the Creation. You can always conclude this - God even makes it possible for you to explain Him away, as He will "give you" your desire, like he gavce the children of Israel what they wanted to eat when they thought they knew better than God.
But you won't find peace.
The truth is, like you I searched for all of the explanations to explain God away.
I would, with my reasoning mind, say that my prayers are post-hoc reasoning and confirmation bias, that it is wishful thinking and self-induced placebo. I would say that the car is post hoc ergo propter hoc display. I would say that there are experiments showing that religious experience is generic and can be replicated in the lab.
I could say all that and have said those things in the past, but guess what - in the end all of that is an utter joke compared to the truth, and is foolishness, because it handwaves away true wisdom, which was harder to achieve than assimilating a set of objections.
The Spirit of God divides the marrow. You can't beat God.
i will now leave this place. Goodbye for now.

This message is a reply to:
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Blue Jay
Member (Idle past 2774 days)
Posts: 2843
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


(1)
Message 20 of 154 (519784)
08-17-2009 7:42 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by Straggler
08-16-2009 11:35 AM


Conundrum
Hi, Straggler.
Straggler writes:
think I would claim that humans have an immaterial component that is able to detect immaterial entities. A "soul" by any other name.
That was also my first impulse.
The real problem for that argument is that it only shifts the problem back a notch: try explaining how your immaterial component interacts with your material component without running into the same problem.
I don't have an answer for it. The only thing I could offer would be that "immaterial" doesn't necessarily mean "undetectable," but then I'd be left with the question of why we don't detect more immaterial things on a regular basis.
-----
Straggler writes:
If it's only distinguishable feature from biased guessing is the degree of personal conviction it induces then I would argue that the term "evidence" is being abused.
Of course. Rahvin provided a good summary of all that.
The only point that I was trying to make is that I would suspect that, for most who believe in immaterial entities, evidence is entirely beside the point. In fact, I would argue that most Christians believe that the lack of actual evidence for spiritual things is an essential characteristic of spiritual things.
So, most theists wouldn't even complain, even if your point were correct (and I think it is). It's that "faith" thing that you didn't want to talk about, I guess.
Yeah, it's a conundrum, for sure: it's just not one that a theist would understand.
{AbE: Arguing with me probably isn't very fun, is it?}
Edited by Bluejay, : Addition

-Bluejay (a.k.a. Mantis, Thylacosmilus)
Darwin loves you.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 13 by Straggler, posted 08-16-2009 11:35 AM Straggler has replied

Replies to this message:
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Straggler
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 21 of 154 (519806)
08-17-2009 1:03 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by Blue Jay
08-17-2009 7:42 AM


Re: Conundrum
That was also my first impulse.
Maybe I am better at thinking theistically than I gave myself credit for. Or maybe you are better at thinking atheistically than I gave you credit for.
The real problem for that argument is that it only shifts the problem back a notch: try explaining how your immaterial component interacts with your material component without running into the same problem.
Ah yes the "mind body" problem. In so many words.
I don't have an answer for it. The only thing I could offer would be that "immaterial" doesn't necessarily mean "undetectable," but then I'd be left with the question of why we don't detect more immaterial things on a regular basis.
In my theistic thinking mode I considered that too. To accommodate both this and the sort of experiences that people claim as evidence of gods I think we would have to consider gods that consciously pop in and out of materiality/detectability such that they are only ever exposed to isolated unverifiable situations. In short the exact sort of experiences most rationally accounted for by "delusion".
The only point that I was trying to make is that I would suspect that, for most who believe in immaterial entities, evidence is entirely beside the point. In fact, I would argue that most Christians believe that the lack of actual evidence for spiritual things is an essential characteristic of spiritual things.
I thought so too until recently. I thought claims of evidence were limited to creationists and the like. But the whole "subjective evidence" thing seems to cloud that issue for some. Message 100
{AbE: Arguing with me probably isn't very fun, is it?}
You are my shining light of relief, respite and sanity in the otherwise all to confrontational situations I seem intent on putting myself in
Edited by Straggler, : Spelling - I keep typing "expereinces"
Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
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Straggler
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 22 of 154 (519813)
08-17-2009 2:00 PM
Reply to: Message 17 by slevesque
08-17-2009 4:04 AM


The Topic
Isn't seeing someone walking on water a subjective experience ? (In that all you will have as empirical evidence will be my word for it)
Or do you define a subjective experience as an experience that excludes the physical senses?
By the terminology that has been insisted upon by RAZD elsewhere I am taking "subjective evidence" to mean single isolated and unverifiable experiences. But in this thread I am limiting the application of such evidence to those entities which are wholly materially undetectable.
RAZD spent three threads trumpeting the value and validity of subjective evidence by applying it to Nessie, Big Foot, Alien life, alien abduction, cats crossing roads, comets, lions and a whole host of other very material concepts. But apparently he has never applied this form of evidence or even commented on it's validity with regard to immaterial entities (despite each of the 3 previous threads in which he raised subjective evidence specifically mentioning immaterial deities of one sort or another as a fairly fundamental aspect of the OP). Apparently RAZD's argument on the validity of subjective evidence has "NOTHING" to do with deities or other immaterial entities. See here Message 402
So in this thread I hope to explore the idea of whether or not truly immaterial entities can be evidenced by means of personal experience (AKA subjective evidence). Thus I am limiting the topic to discussing only materially undetectable entities.
Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 17 by slevesque, posted 08-17-2009 4:04 AM slevesque has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 23 by slevesque, posted 08-17-2009 10:38 PM Straggler has replied
 Message 26 by straightree, posted 08-18-2009 3:11 AM Straggler has seen this message but not replied

  
slevesque
Member (Idle past 4716 days)
Posts: 1456
Joined: 05-14-2009


(1)
Message 23 of 154 (519861)
08-17-2009 10:38 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by Straggler
08-17-2009 2:00 PM


Re: The Topic
Would a ghost be considered an immaterial entity ? because all ghost reports are made with someone seeing them with their eyes, and so one of their material senses.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 22 by Straggler, posted 08-17-2009 2:00 PM Straggler has replied

Replies to this message:
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 Message 27 by anglagard, posted 08-18-2009 3:37 AM slevesque has not replied
 Message 29 by Straggler, posted 08-18-2009 12:37 PM slevesque has not replied

  
Theodoric
Member
Posts: 9272
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 24 of 154 (519864)
08-17-2009 10:50 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by slevesque
08-17-2009 10:38 PM


Re: The Topic
Would a ghost be considered an immaterial entity ? because all ghost reports are made with someone seeing them with their eyes, and so one of their material senses.
Well I don't know of any evidence proving the existence of ghosts. Lots of anecdotes and stories but no evidence.

Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts

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straightree
Member (Idle past 4827 days)
Posts: 57
From: Near Olot, Spain
Joined: 09-26-2008


Message 25 of 154 (519877)
08-18-2009 1:32 AM
Reply to: Message 16 by Straggler
08-16-2009 12:30 PM


Re: Why The
Experience and reasoning? Or bias, wishful thinking, emotional need, desire for higher purpose and a whole host of other very human and very compelling needs, wants and desires?.
What a paradox, I think God produced evolution, you think evolution produced god.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 16 by Straggler, posted 08-16-2009 12:30 PM Straggler has replied

Replies to this message:
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 Message 30 by Straggler, posted 08-18-2009 12:51 PM straightree has replied

  
straightree
Member (Idle past 4827 days)
Posts: 57
From: Near Olot, Spain
Joined: 09-26-2008


Message 26 of 154 (519882)
08-18-2009 3:11 AM
Reply to: Message 22 by Straggler
08-17-2009 2:00 PM


Re: Subjective experience
In message 15 I put it clear what I think about the subject of in-material entities perception. Nevertheless, as I think the term "subjective experience" is not being properly used along this thread, I would like to comment on it.
Any personal experience, of any kind, is subjective. According to Karl Popper, there are three worlds:
First world: the material world.
Second world (subjective): the perceptions produced by the material world in our minds.
Third world (objective): The theories, discussions, experiment descriptions, etc, rendered in books, papers, communications, etc.
Subjective experience, always may deceive you, also if it comes through your physical senses. As a prominent example, a man that has not gone over the polar circle, could be induced to think that the sun settles and rises every day, in all points of the earth.

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anglagard
Member (Idle past 913 days)
Posts: 2339
From: Socorro, New Mexico USA
Joined: 03-18-2006


Message 27 of 154 (519884)
08-18-2009 3:37 AM
Reply to: Message 23 by slevesque
08-17-2009 10:38 PM


Fairies
slevesque writes:
Would a ghost be considered an immaterial entity ? because all ghost reports are made with someone seeing them with their eyes, and so one of their material senses.
Well some people still see ghosts. What I find curious is that no one reports fairy sightings as were common during Victorian times, now it is all UFOs.
Now what was that great Phat quote? Some see dragons where science only sees windmills?

The idea of the sacred is quite simply one of the most conservative notions in any culture, because it seeks to turn other ideas - uncertainty, progress, change - into crimes.
Salman Rushdie
This rudderless world is not shaped by vague metaphysical forces. It is not God who kills the children. Not fate that butchers them or destiny that feeds them to the dogs. It’s us. Only us. - the character Rorschach in Watchmen

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anglagard
Member (Idle past 913 days)
Posts: 2339
From: Socorro, New Mexico USA
Joined: 03-18-2006


Message 28 of 154 (519885)
08-18-2009 3:50 AM
Reply to: Message 25 by straightree
08-18-2009 1:32 AM


Re: Why The
straightree writes:
What a paradox, I think God produced evolution, you think evolution produced god.
As a Neo-Spinozist Unitarian Universalist, IMO the relationship is symbiotic.

The idea of the sacred is quite simply one of the most conservative notions in any culture, because it seeks to turn other ideas - uncertainty, progress, change - into crimes.
Salman Rushdie
This rudderless world is not shaped by vague metaphysical forces. It is not God who kills the children. Not fate that butchers them or destiny that feeds them to the dogs. It’s us. Only us. - the character Rorschach in Watchmen

This message is a reply to:
 Message 25 by straightree, posted 08-18-2009 1:32 AM straightree has not replied

  
Straggler
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 29 of 154 (519918)
08-18-2009 12:37 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by slevesque
08-17-2009 10:38 PM


Re: The Topic
Would a ghost be considered an immaterial entity ? because all ghost reports are made with someone seeing them with their eyes, and so one of their material senses.
Well if a ghost can be seen it can also be detected by cameras right? It must reflect or emit light of an observable wavelength.
If a ghost can be heard it can be audio recorded right? It must cause longditudinal waves in a medium like any other sound.
If a particular immaterial entity cannot be detected by any material method of technology (present or future) then I don't see how it can have been "seen" or "heard" by our senses.
My understanding is that gods are considered to be inherently immune from material detection. If this is not the case, if it is just that they are beyond our current technological scope then I hope one day to see some material evidence for gods. Right?

This message is a reply to:
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Straggler
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 30 of 154 (519923)
08-18-2009 12:51 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by straightree
08-18-2009 1:32 AM


Topic
What a paradox, I think God produced evolution, you think evolution produced god.
Maybe that is a fair summary.
But unless that god is entirely immaterial yet evidenced by means of personal experience He/he/She/she/It/it is off topic.
Sorry to be so brusque but the whole evolution as evidence for God thing is just gonna hijack this thread down so many paths it was never intended to explore.
Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
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