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Author Topic:   the bluegenes Challenge (bluegenes and RAZD only)
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 46 of 222 (586283)
10-12-2010 10:51 AM
Reply to: Message 45 by RAZD
10-11-2010 5:07 PM


Baseless beliefs.
RAZD writes:

This is more like pseudo-science in general and creation-science in particular.

RAZD writes:

I gave you a listt of other possible sources, and you dismissed them. That too is how pseudo-science in general and creation-science in particular is done.

RAZD writes:

You need to actually demonstrate that those other methods cannot contribute ideas and information. Way back in Message 14 I said:

In several religions there are beliefs involving god/s appearing as humans or animals to assist people reach enlightenment or assist them in finding truth.

Many eastern religions believe in enlightenment, which involves a level of understanding universal truths.

Other religions claim that religious experiences are means to communicate with god/s.

And of course there are religions (like the australian one you listed above) that believe in dreamtime experiences.

That's four different ways that various religions have claimed to have a source of knowledge about supernatural beings\entities\etc. -- and ones that you should have been already aware of.

That's four different claims that you cannot verify or support. You bring up people's religious beliefs in an attempt to attack my theory while talking about pseudo-science. Are you trying to make me laugh?

Your task, if you claim that "human invention is the only known source of supernatural beings," is to falsify these as means of having an outside source for concepts of supernatural beings\entities\etc.

No it isn't. Your task is to learn how science works. Scientific theories are not weakened by asking others to falsify unfalsifiable and unsupported religious claims. Evolutionary biologists do not have to falsify Omphalism in order for evolutionary theory to be a very good explanation for what we see in the fossil record.

You're still making the same basic mistake that you made at the beginning with your "supernatural beings can exist" claim.

Unsupported and unfalsifiable claims can only be accepted by science if and when properly supported by positive evidence.

People believing in religions, witchcraft etc, is not evidence for the veracity of those beliefs.

Amusingly, I note that there are several instances where people have said that an idea came to them in a dream, which can be taken as objective evidence of new concepts and information coming from dreams.

It's happened to me, and that's the same as saying that our minds can come up with ideas that turn out to be good, even occasionally when in dream or semi-conscious mode. It has nothing to do with magic. Would you like to be the first person in the world to demonstrate that a human being has ever dreamed of a supernatural being who turned out actually to be real?

I also note that it is entirely possible for someone else to tell me a concept\idea that is new to me, and that I am not able to discern whether that person is a god appearing as a human or not - do you know of a way?

You could go on the fact that you have plenty of evidence that humans are real things, but no positive evidence that gods actually exist. I'd look for behaviour that smashes the laws of nature, personally, and if absent, I'd assume the default evidence based position that what appears to be human very, very probably is human.

There are frogs in my garden, and I go for the "frog" view of them rather than the "prince" view of them because I have absolute zero positive evidence that princes can actually be turned into frogs. You'd be uncommitted on the question, of course.

Think about this, and it might help you understand why scientific theories are presented as falsifiable rather than provable. As I've said before, you have no way of conclusively knowing whether or not Satan is manipulating your mind. But, like the unsupported unfalsifiable propositions you've been making, such an idea requires positive support in order to be taken seriously.

You appear to assume that your hypothesis is right, and then use that to claim that this refutes any other possible source, so that you can conclude that your hypothesis is right.

This is nothing more than begging the consequent and circular reasoning, pure and simple.

Again, a scientific theory is regarded as falsifiable, which is the opposite of assuming that it's right.

RAZD writes:

The fact that you can make up stuff does not mean that any other concept is made up.

That was not the point of the experiment. It was to establish that human beings can and do make up supernatural beings.

Once again. Human invention is the only source of supernatural beings known to science.

Human authorship is the only source of books known to science.

It's no use telling me about people's religious beliefs about sources of supernatural beings, or telling me about people's religious beliefs about books like the Bible and the Koran being authored by gods unless you can establish the real existence of these sources/literary gods.

If you can't demonstrate that any supernatural beings actually exist, you should concede that I have a strong theory.

Prediction of the day from my theory. You will not falsify it in your next post, and no-one on the peanut gallery will falsify it in the next ten posts.

Strong theories give high confidence predictions.

Supernatural being of the day. The five-eyed, seven legged backwards-walking backwards-talking mind bending magical monster who will force you to write your next post backwards with the last word in the top left and the first, bottom right.

Edited by bluegenes, : grammar


This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by RAZD, posted 10-11-2010 5:07 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 47 by RAZD, posted 10-20-2010 8:51 PM bluegenes has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 47 of 222 (587796)
10-20-2010 8:51 PM
Reply to: Message 46 by bluegenes
10-12-2010 10:51 AM


Pseudoscience or fraud?
bluegenes and RAZD only

Well bluegenes, I don't know whether to laugh or feel insulted.

Supernatural being of the day. The five-eyed, seven legged backwards-walking backwards-talking mind bending magical monster who will force you to write your next post backwards with the last word in the top left and the first, bottom right.

More like the pseudoscientific dodge of the day.

As evidence for your concept, you failed to demonstrate that this is a figment of human imagination.

If you have made this up, then there are two problems:

  1. it is just fictional word salad, rather than being established as a believed supernatural entity, and
  2. you are guilty of making up evidence for an hypothesis, emblematic of pseudoscience and fraud.

If you have not made this up then there are two problems:

  1. you have not referenced it to your source of information, another mark of pseudoscience and fraud, and
  2. you have not established that anyone has ever considered it a supernatural entity.

Most certainly this is not how science is done.

Strong theories give high confidence predictions.

And you still have yet to establish that you have a theory. So far it appears that all you have is evidence that you can make up stuff. If that is all you have to support your concept, then you are dealing in either pseudoscience or fraud.

Let me give you an analogy for what I think your concept and your "predictions" amount to:

I have a theory that all numbers fall between 1 and 2 - it is a strong theory.

Prediction of the day from my theory. You will not falsify it in your next post, and no-one on the peanut gallery will falsify it in the next ten posts.
Strong theories give high confidence predictions.

1.5

Now, rather obviously I can go on posting number after number after number after number between 1 and 2, as there are an infinite number of these particular entities, however not one of these number I produce will demonstrate in any way that my theory is a "strong theory," even though you will be completely incapable of falsifying any one of my "predictions" -- this is what you are doing. Staying in the "safe" zone does not mean that you have a theory, and most especially does not demonstrate that your concept is strong (unless you mean strong like day old fish).

I wasn't aware that your "theory" was that all the fictional characters you can make up are products of the human mind, however if you want to amend it to that tautology, then I will agree with you.

If not, then the question is when will you get out of the sandbox and start providing some real evidence.

You have yet to demonstrate that a single supernatural entity from a single documented belief is made up, with a citation for the source of the entity and documentation that someone does or has beleived in it at some time.

Anything less is waisting your and my time.

You bring up people's religious beliefs in an attempt to attack my theory while talking about pseudo-science. Are you trying to make me laugh?

No, I'm trying to get you to deal with the real issues facing you, and to debate in good faith, rather than pretending to do science or have something that you do not have. You made a claim and you need to support it.

bluegenes Message 11: Human invention is the only known source of supernatural beings.

Amusingly, I see that you are now equivocating, and trying to change this.

Human invention is the only source of supernatural beings known to science.

Now you have another assertion to substantiate: you have not demonstrated that a single supernatural being is actually known to science, and thus cannot claim to have a known source.

That's four different claims that you cannot verify or support.

So says the pseudoskeptic pseudoscientist.

Wrong again.

What I have claimed is that there exists objective empirical valid evidence that people think these methods of communication with supernatural entities exist, this evidence is abundent, and thus you need to have some explanation for it. That is what science does when confronted with anomolous information.

I can also point to any number of religious texts as a source of information on supernatural entities, and note that you have not demonstrated that a single one is a product of human invention.

Unsupported and unfalsifiable claims can only be accepted by science if and when properly supported by positive evidence.

Then you should not be making them,if you are going to claim to have a scientific theory. Note that I have pointed out several times that (a) your claim is unsupported (yet) by objective empirical valid evidence and (b) that your purported falsification test is not sufficient to cover all possible cases.

Amusingly, I note that there are several instances where people have said that an idea came to them in a dream, which can be taken as objective evidence of new concepts and information coming from dreams.

It's happened to me, and that's the same as saying that our minds can come up with ideas that turn out to be good, even occasionally when in dream or semi-conscious mode. It has nothing to do with magic.

Curiously, once again you have just asserted something without actually demonstrating that it is true. You have failed to demonstrate that this is not a possible means of communication with supernatural entities.

I also note that it is entirely possible for someone else to tell me a concept\idea that is new to me, and that I am not able to discern whether that person is a god appearing as a human or not - do you know of a way?

You could go on the fact that you have plenty of evidence that humans are real things, but no positive evidence that gods actually exist. I'd look for behaviour that smashes the laws of nature, personally, and if absent, I'd assume the default evidence based position that what appears to be human very, very probably is human.

In other words, you would assume you are right, rather than devise some test that could positively distinguish a human from a god posing as a human. Again, you have failed to demonstrate that this is not a possible means of communication with supernatural entities.

You appear to assume that your hypothesis is right, and then use that to claim that this refutes any other possible source, so that you can conclude that your hypothesis is right.

This is nothing more than begging the consequent and circular reasoning, pure and simple.

Again, a scientific theory is regarded as falsifiable, which is the opposite of assuming that it's right.

>>So you should stop doing it.

In science theory testing, one of the things normally done is to assume that the converse is true, and then make predictions of what you would find if that were the case. This is how you develop good falsification tests.

In this instance we would assume that other forms of communication mentioned exist or were possible, and then try to develop methods that would distinguish them from human imagination.<<

I was not aware that any valid science was done by making up evidence or by just assumng that your hypothesis is correct and disregarding evidence to the contrary.

Again from the previous link on the scientific method:

http://teacher.pas.rochester.edu/...appendixe/appendixe.html

quote:
... Common Mistakes in Applying the Scientific Method

... The most fundamental error is to mistake the hypothesis for an explanation of a phenomenon, without performing experimental tests. Sometimes "common sense" and "logic" tempt us into believing that no test is needed. There are numerous examples of this, dating from the Greek philosophers to the present day.

Another common mistake is to ignore or rule out data which do not support the hypothesis. Ideally, the experimenter is open to the possibility that the hypothesis is correct or incorrect. Sometimes, however, a scientist may have a strong belief that the hypothesis is true (or false), or feels internal or external pressure to get a specific result. In that case, there may be a psychological tendency to find "something wrong", such as systematic effects, with data which do not support the scientist's expectations, while data which do agree with those expectations may not be checked as carefully. The lesson is that all data must be handled in the same way....


Pseudoscience or fraud, your pick.

Enjoy.

bluegenes and RAZD only

Edited by RAZD, : >>added by edit<<


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


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This message is a reply to:
 Message 46 by bluegenes, posted 10-12-2010 10:51 AM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 48 by bluegenes, posted 10-25-2010 4:47 AM RAZD has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 48 of 222 (588398)
10-25-2010 4:47 AM
Reply to: Message 47 by RAZD
10-20-2010 8:51 PM


RAZD writes:

As evidence for your concept, you failed to demonstrate that this is a figment of human imagination.

You've demonstrated it for me. In addition, your comments about pseudoscience seem to indicate that you're not aware that experimentation is very much a part of science.

When people imagine up supernatural beings in testable areas, it can be demonstrated that people can and do invent them, and that's the purpose of the several little experiments I've done on this thread.

RAZD writes:

Let me give you an analogy……

Surely I'm not going to have to try to teach you what a good "analogy" is, along with trying to teach you what "mutually exclusive" means?

Here's a real analogy:

"All raindrops come from clouds".

That is a strong theory if clouds are the only source of raindrops known to science. If another source can be properly established beyond all reasonable doubt, it is falsified.

It is not weakened by asking proponents of the theory to disprove an unfalsifiable suggestion like: "Some raindrops come from invisible angels pissing".

It is not weakened by pointing out that some people believe the "angels" suggestion, if there are such people.
Analogies are for illustration, so does that help you see where you're going wrong?

RAZD writes:

I wasn't aware that your "theory" was that all the fictional characters you can make up are products of the human mind, however if you want to amend it to that tautology, then I will agree with you.

Of course, my theory isn't that, and you needed to make the idea up. At least you seem to agree that humans can and do invent supernatural beings, and that there are fictional supernatural beings. Good.

RAZD writes:

You have yet to demonstrate that a single supernatural entity from a single documented belief is made up, with a citation for the source of the entity and documentation that someone does or has beleived in it at some time.

There are plenty of examples in the creation mythologies I pointed out to you, but I'll give you some easy ones.
The god who created the earth flat is a straightforward one for you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flat_Earth_Society

http://en.wikipedia.org/...ristian_Catholic_Apostolic_Church

Then there's one that we're all familiar with here on EvC, which is the god who created the earth about 6,000 years ago, and caused a world-wide flood about 4,300 years ago.

http://www.answersingenesis.org/

That the flat-earth creator is a human invention can be established by direct observation that the planet isn't flat, and that the (non-omphalist) YEC creator is a human invention can be established beyond all reasonable doubt by the overwhelming scientific evidence that contradicts it.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

Human invention is the only source of supernatural beings known to science.

Now you have another assertion to substantiate: you have not demonstrated that a single supernatural being is actually known to science, and thus cannot claim to have a known source.

If you're arguing that I should have used the awkward phrase "supernatural being concepts", which I think I have used in earlier posts, then I think you're being pedantic. You'll find anything from witches to evil spirits to djinns (what Egyptian schizophrenics tend to perceive their supernatural communicants as, according to a psychiatric paper I read long ago) to gods referred to in the literature.

In anthropology, of course, and in psychiatry and psychology, for example:

Evil Spirits causing disease in Malay patients

God's relation to attachment theory

RAZD writes:

What I have claimed is that there exists objective empirical valid evidence that people think these methods of communication with supernatural entities exist, this evidence is abundent, and thus you need to have some explanation for it. That is what science does when confronted with anomolous information.

I agree entirely that there's plenty of evidence that people believe that supernatural beings exist, and that they believe they can communicate with them. What's strange is that you seem to think this is some kind of problem for my theory.
I only know of one general explanation for these beliefs that is known to science. If you're looking for more specific explanations, there's plenty of research going on.

For example:

Population distribution of hallucinations

What's certain is that the actual existence of any real supernatural beings external to the human mind has never been established. People believing in supernatural beings is perfectly in keeping with my theory. When they believe in something that is actually testable and can be falsified, then my theory predicts that it will be falsified. The "Obama Anti-Christ" is an example I've given you whose falsification is predicted, and the "flat earth creator" is an example of one already falsified.

RAZD writes:

I can also point to any number of religious texts as a source of information on supernatural entities, and note that you have not demonstrated that a single one is a product of human invention.

You'll find that these texts taken collectively support my theory because they often describe mutually exclusive beliefs, and taken individually, some of them support my theory if taken literally (Genesis, for example). None, of course, have been demonstrated to be true, which is consistent with my theory, and something it predicts.

Keep on pointing to them if you want to present evidence in support of my theory. Thanks.

RAZD writes:

Then you should not be making them, if you are going to claim to have a scientific theory. Note that I have pointed out several times that (a) your claim is unsupported (yet) by objective empirical valid evidence and (b) that your purported falsification test is not sufficient to cover all possible cases.


I do not note that you have pointed out (a). I note that you do not understand (or do not want to understand) the evidence I've presented, and I note that your claim (b) means that you do not appear to understand the concept of falsification of scientific theories.

RAZD writes:

Curiously, once again you have just asserted something without actually demonstrating that it is true. You have failed to demonstrate that this is not a possible means of communication with supernatural entities.

Again, evidence that people believe that they are communicating with supernatural beings is not evidence that they actually are. You demonstrate here that you think that demanding the falsification of unfalsifiable propositions is something that weakens theories. See my example above of the pissing angels.

Evolutionary biologists and proponents of tectonic plate theory do not have to falsify Omphalism merely because some people believe it.

If you continue in this vein, it'll be interesting to see how many established scientific theories you'll be implicitly attacking.

Don't make the mistake of treating scientific theories as "provable". If things are considered provable, they would be stated as facts, not theories or laws. I went through this with Pasteur's Law early in the thread.

If my theory is weak, why is it that you cannot demonstrate the actual external existence of one single supernatural being of any genre, when we both know very well that humans can and do imagine them?

Edited by bluegenes, : missing word added


This message is a reply to:
 Message 47 by RAZD, posted 10-20-2010 8:51 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 49 by RAZD, posted 11-05-2010 10:41 PM bluegenes has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 49 of 222 (590099)
11-05-2010 10:41 PM
Reply to: Message 48 by bluegenes
10-25-2010 4:47 AM


another dodge, another delusion
Hi bluegenes, don't know how far I'll get tonight.

You must think I am naive or gullible to even pretend that you have an argument here based on fictions.

You've demonstrated it for me. In addition, your comments about pseudoscience seem to indicate that you're not aware that experimentation is very much a part of science.

When people imagine up supernatural beings in testable areas, it can be demonstrated that people can and do invent them, and that's the purpose of the several little experiments I've done on this thread.

Actually all you have demonstrated is that you have an imagination, something that was not in doubt. Yes your "experiments" demonstrated that much.

Unfortunately, for you, they do not demonstrate anything else.

To explain I will use a couple of examples from well known fiction:

  1. Philip Marlowe is a fictional detective created by Raymond Chandler, and he appears in several novels. The fact that he is made up does not mean that all private eye detectives are necessarily figments of imagination.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Marlowe

    Phillip Marlowe is a fictional caricature of actual private eye detectives. We know that actual private eye detectives exist, so this logical structure of yours is invalid.

  2. Casper the Friendly Ghost was created in the late 1930s by Seymour Reit and Joe Oriolo, and appears in thousands of cartoons. The fact that he is made up does not mean that all ghosts are necessarily figments of imagination.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casper_the_Friendly_Ghost

    Casper the Friendly Ghost is a fictional caricature of a ghost, drawing on information found in other accounts of ghosts and adding fictional elements to create an intentional fictional character. We do not know whether or not actual ghosts exist, but this is not evidence that they are imaginary.

As you admit making them up, your creations are fictional caricatures of supernatural beings, based on a jumbled pile of supernatural aspects taken from other accounts of supernatural beings, and they demonstrate nothing about the existence or not of any supernatural beings in those other accounts.

If my theory is weak, why is it that you cannot demonstrate the actual external existence of one single supernatural being of any genre, when we both know very well that humans can and do imagine them?

Notice that you did not invalidate 1.5 as a number between 1 and 2. Your next number to invalidate is 1.57.

Failure to do so will demonstrate that my theory that all numbers are between 1 and 2 is just as "strong" (or not) as your concept. This is the purpose of this analogy: to demonstrate that your claim of strength is faulty.

Surely I'm not going to have to try to teach you what a good "analogy" is, along with trying to teach you what "mutually exclusive" means?

And once again, we see that you just assert your position as true without any demonstration of its validity. Amusingly your failure to address this issue is just one more in a long line. The analogy works by showing that your approach is faulty by not addressing issues outside of your limited set of intentionally fictional caricatures and your myopic insistence on only your interpretation of creation stories. It appears that another example is in order to clarify this for you:

Take a class of children to a furniture manufacturing plant, divide them up into small groups, each of which visit a different part of the plant. They observe what is going on and ask questions of the workers about what they do. Then each student writes a report on making furniture.

Do you really think that each report will be exactly the same? Do you really think that there will not be "mutually exclusive" details in the reports?

There are plenty of examples in the creation mythologies I pointed out to you, but I'll give you some easy ones.
The god who created the earth flat is a straightforward one for you.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flat_Earth_Society
http://en.wikipedia.org/...ristian_Catholic_Apostolic_Church
Then there's one that we're all familiar with here on EvC, which is the god who created the earth about 6,000 years ago, and caused a world-wide flood about 4,300 years ago.

All I notice is that these are variations, based on the same basic story (or set of stories).

Of course these all fit with the Hindu Hypothesis Message 14:

quote:
(1) god/s are more complex than they are portrayed in any religion.

(2) god/s are not completely or fully understood in any religion, nor in piecing all religions together, they appear to be beyond understanding.


And the reasons for variations in various stories already cited, Message 25:

quote:
There are many good reasons why the creation stories can be taken as allegorical:
  1. Many people in many religions
    1. state that they believe them to be allegorical and
    2. believe that god/s created the earth, universe, life, etc.

  2. The language used in the stories is language common to metaphor and analogy (see (2) below), rather than to scientific explanations,
  3. Dreams and visions are
    1. commonly taken to be symbolic rather than factual experiences, AND
    2. commonly considered to carry some valid meaning (when interpreted), AND
    3. there are recorded instances of dreamed concepts being found to be true.

  4. Metaphor and analogy are a common way to teach children, especially when concepts are beyond their (current) ability to understand (or you do not want to go into greater detail at the time). The "birds and the bees" for example.
  5. Any god/s involved in the vision\dream\explanation\etc may not have been directly involved in the creation, and thus not fully able themselves to explain it.
  6. It is unlikely that humans, especially humans several thousand years ago
    1. would be able to understand a scientific explanation of the actual creation process/es used by god/s, so
    2. god/s likely treated them the way we treat children, and
    3. tailored the specific story for the specific person, or
    4. did not give a complete explanation, and
    5. even then were likely to be misunderstood, because

  7. human understanding of the actual creation process/es would require competence in that field, a competence that is currently lacking in the world today (or we could create universes).

And the differences are essentially predicted in Message 32:

quote:
If you've ever played telephone you know how stories change in the telling, and thus how second or third hand accounts can vary rather extraordinarily from the original ... and yet you ignore this and expect scientifically documented accurate results from this kind of process?

As more time passes accounts have been observed to change, however the contradictions found in some later accounts does not invalidate the original account.

What I have claimed is that there exists objective empirical valid evidence that people think these methods of communication with supernatural entities exist, this evidence is abundent, and thus you need to have some explanation for it. That is what science does when confronted with anomolous information.
I agree entirely that there's plenty of evidence that people believe that supernatural beings exist, and that they believe they can communicate with them. What's strange is that you seem to think this is some kind of problem for my theory.

Indeed, if your "explanation" is to assume that your claim is true, thus concluding that all those examples of other means of communication are products of the human imagination, then all you have done is assume your theory is true to assume that your "evidence" is true, and then, that because your "evidence" is true that your theory is true.

It's called circular reasoning, another logical fallacy.

Your claim is that all supernatural entities are figments of the human imagination.

You need to actually demonstrate this.

So far you have demonstrated nothing but your own imagination.

Enjoy.

Edited by RAZD, : added school trip example


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


• • • Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click) • • •

This message is a reply to:
 Message 48 by bluegenes, posted 10-25-2010 4:47 AM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 50 by bluegenes, posted 11-06-2010 1:04 PM RAZD has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 50 of 222 (590173)
11-06-2010 1:04 PM
Reply to: Message 49 by RAZD
11-05-2010 10:41 PM


RAZD writes:

Actually all you have demonstrated is that you have an imagination, something that was not in doubt. Yes your "experiments" demonstrated that much.
Unfortunately, for you, they do not demonstrate anything else.

I've demonstrated that humans can and do make up supernatural beings, which is all that the experiments were designed to demonstrate.

RAZD writes:

To explain I will use a couple of examples from well known fiction:

Philip Marlowe is a fictional detective created by Raymond Chandler, and he appears in several novels. The fact that he is made up does not mean that all private eye detectives are necessarily figments of imagination.

Phillip Marlowe is a fictional caricature of actual private eye detectives. We know that actual private eye detectives exist, so this logical structure of yours is invalid.

We can easily establish that private detectives exist outside the human imagination.

The purpose of my demonstrating that humans can and do make up supernatural beings was that you seemed to be questioning that point in earlier posts. It's only when combined with the point that the human imagination is the only known source of them that we arrive at a strong theory.

However, we now seem to have progressed past that point, and we are reaching some agreement. As you say here:

RAZD writes:

Casper the Friendly Ghost is a fictional caricature of a ghost, drawing on information found in other accounts of ghosts and adding fictional elements to create an intentional fictional character. We do not know whether or not actual ghosts exist, but this is not evidence that they are imaginary.

Here we see how ghosts differ from private detectives.

So, we can reasonably say that we know that humans can make up imaginary ghosts, but do not know, in scientific terms, of any source for them other than the human imagination. You claim that this is not evidence that they are imaginary. Would you claim that, because descent with modification is the only source of the species we see around us known to science, that evolutionary theory is not a strong theory because no-one has conclusively falsified the suggestion that supernatural beings are involved in designing them, and no evolutionary biologists have falsified omphalism?

This brings me to a point that I've been trying to make throughout the thread. When you present something like your "Hindu hypothesis", you seem to think that an unsupported belief or suggestion in some way weakens a scientific theory, or makes it invalid.

That isn't the case, and it isn't necessary to falsify an unfalsifiable proposition like "some rabbits are produced from conjurers hats" for biologists to reasonably assume that being born from other rabbits is where they all come from.

RAZD writes:

god/s are more complex than they are portrayed in any religion.

Would you like to support this belief with evidence? It might help if you established their existence before you give them a complexity rating.

RAZD writes:

god/s are not completely or fully understood in any religion, nor in piecing all religions together, they appear to be beyond understanding.

If you think that's the way the gods of religions appear, then I have a strong theory that would explain that appearance when you bear in mind that different individuals and different human cultures will imagine different things.

If religions are confused and confusing about their gods, perhaps it's because they are failing to treat the god concepts scientifically, which would lead to regarding them as coming from their only known source, the human imagination.

RAZD writes:

Indeed, if your "explanation" is to assume that your claim is true……

No-one who understands what scientific theories are would claim that they are assumed to be "true". They are generally understood to be assumed to be unprovable but falsifiable.

RAZD writes:

As more time passes accounts have been observed to change,……..

Certainly. You mean new things are imagined. I agree. The god of the bible evolves from Old to New Testament, and the original Eastern European vampires didn't transform themselves into bats, but more recent versions do, and there are people who believe in these things.

RAZD writes:

however the contradictions found in some later accounts does not invalidate the original account.

What "original account" of how many supernatural beings of which description doing what, and when? Would you care to demonstrate that you're not imagining the idea of this "original account"?

My theory predicts that you won't be able to.

We could speculate, for example, that there were fairies in Africa about 100,000 years ago, sharing the territory with our common ancestral group, and known to them. These could be the origin of all supernatural concepts in the mind, all of which have been distorted out of all recognition from the originals by subsequent human imaginings.

But there's no scientific evidence to support this idea, and the parsimonious explanation of the supernatural beings known to our minds is that they come from their only known source, and that they're human inventions.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 49 by RAZD, posted 11-05-2010 10:41 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 51 by RAZD, posted 11-25-2010 12:31 PM bluegenes has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 51 of 222 (593238)
11-25-2010 12:31 PM
Reply to: Message 50 by bluegenes
11-06-2010 1:04 PM


... and still no evidence ...
Hi bluegenes, sorry for the delay, but I've been busy in the non-virtual world, buying a house, starting a company, working on a contract for my first client, and taking a (well earned if brief) vacation.

Then there was the issue of rebuilding two computers to serve my (new) needs.

Fun in the fast lane.

I've demonstrated that humans can and do make up supernatural beings, which is all that the experiments were designed to demonstrate.

No, all you demonstrated was the ability to make up intentionally fictional caricatures of supernatural beings.

This has no bearing on the issue of supernatural entities being made up.

You seem to absolutely fail to see the distinction.

We can easily establish that private detectives exist outside the human imagination.

Yes, and thus this little example easily demonstrates that your assumption -- that (a) because you can make up fictional caricatures of supernatural beings means (b) that all supernatural beings are made up -- is a logically invalid construction.

You can make up as many "Phillip Marlowe" supernatural beings as you - or anyone else - wish and it has absolutely no bearing on whether or not private detectives actually exist.

Here we see how ghosts differ from private detectives.

Nope. What we see is that your logic is just as bad for one as it is for the other - fatally flawed in the construction of the argument.

... but do not know, in scientific terms, of any source for them other than the human imagination.

But we do know of other sources being documented in many forms around the world. The fact that you keep ignoring this objective empirical evidence of other possible sources does not mean that they do not exist.

Here you are just assuming that you are correct so that you can use that as evidence that you are correct and just ignore the contrary evidence.

This brings me to a point that I've been trying to make throughout the thread. When you present something like your "Hindu hypothesis", you seem to think that an unsupported belief or suggestion in some way weakens a scientific theory, or makes it invalid.

And what you fail to realize and address, it seems, is that you do not have a theory, you only have a concept based on your opinions. You have absolutely failed to show any objective empirical evidence that this is anything but your opinion.

The point is that there is an alternative explanation, and that you have absolutely failed to provide a means to distinguish one from the other.

YOU have an unsupported belief that you are trying to pass off as a scientific theory -- while ignoring that it does not fit withing the definition for the scientific method of developing scientific theories that you agreed to.

Message 40: On your definitions. Your 4 point description of the modern scientific method seems fine for our purposes here ...

You have absolutely failed to provide the evidentiary basis for the proper formation of a proper scientific theory, in spite of the claim to have "plenty of evidence" to do so -- this is getting old.

We could speculate, for example, that there were fairies in Africa about 100,000 years ago, sharing the territory with our common ancestral group, and known to them. These could be the origin of all supernatural concepts in the mind, all of which have been distorted out of all recognition from the originals by subsequent human imaginings.

We could, but that would be as pointless as your making up intentionally fictional caricatures of supernatural beings -- it still does not address the issue of whether supernatural beings found in documents and believed by many people to exist are products of human imagination or not.

What "original account" of how many supernatural beings of which description doing what, and when? Would you care to demonstrate that you're not imagining the idea of this "original account"?

Well, that is your problem to demonstrate not mine. YOU were the one making the claim (a) that you have an explanatory concept and (b) that you have "plenty of evidence" to support it.

All I need demonstrate is that there are valid reasons to be highly skeptical that you have anything but personal opinion. I have done that. In spades.

You can't just assume that you are correct , which is all you have done to date.

You keep ignoring the arguments that show your assumptions to be just that - assumptions and not valid logical conclusions. Again:

Message 49:

And once again, we see that you just assert your position as true without any demonstration of its validity. Amusingly your failure to address this issue is just one more in a long line. The analogy works by showing that your approach is faulty by not addressing issues outside of your limited set of intentionally fictional caricatures and your myopic insistence on only your interpretation of creation stories. It appears that another example is in order to clarify this for you:

Take a class of children to a furniture manufacturing plant, divide them up into small groups, each of which visit a different part of the plant. They observe what is going on and ask questions of the workers about what they do. Then each student writes a report on making furniture.

Do you really think that each report will be exactly the same? Do you really think that there will not be "mutually exclusive" details in the reports?

According to your "logic" the existence of any mutually exclusive details in these reports would be evidence that the furniture makers were products of human imagination.

Obviously, this would be a false conclusion.

Obviously, your conclusions about god/s, based on what you claim are mutually exclusive details in creation stories, is also a false conclusion.

Enjoy.


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


• • • Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click) • • •

This message is a reply to:
 Message 50 by bluegenes, posted 11-06-2010 1:04 PM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 52 by xongsmith, posted 11-25-2010 2:08 PM RAZD has acknowledged this reply
 Message 53 by bluegenes, posted 11-26-2010 12:27 PM RAZD has responded

  
xongsmith
Member
Posts: 1921
From: massachusetts US
Joined: 01-01-2009
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 52 of 222 (593245)
11-25-2010 2:08 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by RAZD
11-25-2010 12:31 PM


Re: ... and still no evidence ...
oops

Edited by xongsmith, : No reason given.


- xongsmith, 5.7d

This message is a reply to:
 Message 51 by RAZD, posted 11-25-2010 12:31 PM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


(1)
Message 53 of 222 (593353)
11-26-2010 12:27 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by RAZD
11-25-2010 12:31 PM


and still no evidence for the actual existence of a single supernatural being
Welcome back.

I've helped you with your title, as it was ambiguous.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

I've demonstrated that humans can and do make up supernatural beings, which is all that the experiments were designed to demonstrate.

No, all you demonstrated was the ability to make up intentionally fictional caricatures of supernatural beings.

There's some redundancy in that sentence. I could hardly make up non-fictional ones, could I?

Which real supernatural beings (ones that have been confirmed to exist beyond all reasonable doubt) are my imaginary beings caricatures of? How would you know how to distinguish a "caricature" of a supernatural being from the real thing?

RAZD writes:

This has no bearing on the issue of supernatural entities being made up.

Making up supernatural entities has no bearing on supernatural entities being made up? You may not have noticed, but my theory is about human beings making things up; about figments of our imagination.

RAZD writes:

You seem to absolutely fail to see the distinction.

You seem to fail to see that it is the fact that humans can and do make supernatural beings up combined with the fact that human invention is the only source of supernatural-being-concepts known to science that leads to the theory that all supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

We can easily establish that private detectives exist outside the human imagination.

Yes, and thus this little example easily demonstrates that your assumption -- that (a) because you can make up fictional caricatures of supernatural beings means (b) that all supernatural beings are made up -- is a logically invalid construction.

My posts are in English. You've just quoted me saying:

bluegenes writes:

I've demonstrated that humans can and do make up supernatural beings, which is all that the experiments were designed to demonstrate.

It would help if you could read and understand English, because then you would have known way back in the thread (from the beginning) that I am not making up the logically invalid constructions you keep describing. You are making them up.

If you can arrive at a conclusion in science via a logically valid and sound deductive argument, you are arriving at a knowable fact, not a theory.

RAZD writes:

Nope. What we see is that your logic is just as bad for one as it is for the other - fatally flawed in the construction of the argument.

See above. If you really think there's no difference between our knowledge of the existential state of private detectives as compared to that of supernatural beings, then I suggest that you're constructing a reality of your own in which to argue from.

RAZD writes:

But we do know of other sources being documented in many forms around the world. The fact that you keep ignoring this objective empirical evidence of other possible sources does not mean that they do not exist.

Would you like to give me a list of documents which provide "objective empirical evidence" of "other possible sources"? I read quite a lot of scientific papers, and I'd be happy to look at any you can recommend that are available online. I'd have thought such material would be very, very well known. In fact, famous.

Or were you talking about other documents? If you are, will you be prepared to demonstrate that any supernatural beings described in them do not come from the only source of such things known to science, which is the human imagination?

We know that human belief in supernatural beings is widespread. People documenting their beliefs in literate societies provides no more evidence for the actual existence of the entities than the oral traditions of non-literate societies.

I thought you might be agreeing with me, by this time, that the human imagination is the only source of supernatural being-concepts known to science. Do you agree? (A direct question that should be easily answered).

It's worth mentioning, once again, because of your use of the word "possible", that scientific theories are at ease with speculative alternative possibilities. The theories are regarded as potentially falsifiable from the perspective of our knowledge, therefore, by definition, alternatives must be considered to be theoretically "possible". It is only scientific facts that cannot tolerate alternative possibilities.

RAZD writes:

Here you are just assuming that you are correct so that you can use that as evidence that you are correct and just ignore the contrary evidence.

Feel free to present this evidence. I haven't seen any evidence for the actual existence of supernatural beings on this thread. Evidence that people believe in them is not evidence that they exist, as I've explained. It's an undisputed fact that loads of people believe in them. Look hard enough, and you'll probably find someone who believes that Harry Potter exists.

You can tell me about a group who believe in the one true creator god who hates gays, and you can tell me about people who believe in the one true creator god who loves all humanity, but all you'll demonstrate is that one of the two characters must be a figment of the human imagination, and you won't be able to support the existence of the other.

Or tell me about the 45% of Americans who believe in a (non-omphalist) god who created the world less than 10,000 years ago; a character adequately demonstrated by modern science to be a figment of the imagination.

RAZD writes:

You have absolutely failed to provide the evidentiary basis for the proper formation of a proper scientific theory, in spite of the claim to have "plenty of evidence" to do so -- this is getting old.

There's plenty of evidence in the creation stories alone. Anyone can read them and compare them with what's known to science from cosmology, geology and biology. My observations are easily repeatable.

I know that I'm dealing with someone who doesn't seem to know the difference between evidence for a scientific theory and proof of a scientific fact. This is getting old.

I'm waiting for you to realise how many scientific theories and laws you're implicitly dismissing.

Tell me, do evolutionary biologists have to demonstrate that there is no omphalistic god in order to have a strong theory of the formation of the life forms we see around us, and the history of life back to its origins? That's another direct question.

RAZD writes:

All I need demonstrate is that there are valid reasons to be highly skeptical that you have anything but personal opinion. I have done that. In spades.

That, to play your little game, is just your personal opinion. I'm highly skeptical of the validity of your opinions. There's good evidence in the contents of your posts that emotions may be involved.

Some people seem to react very strangely to the suggestion that all supernatural beings come from their only known source. Using reason alone, without emotional or cultural bias, the reaction should be the same as a reaction to the suggestion that baby rabbits, books, and raindrops come from their only known respective sources.

RAZD writes:

You can't just assume that you are correct , which is all you have done to date.

Scientific theories are assumed to be falsifiable, not "correct".

RAZD writes:

You keep ignoring the arguments that show your assumptions to be just that - assumptions and not valid logical conclusions. Again:

Take a class of children to a furniture manufacturing plant, divide them up into small groups, each of which visit a different part of the plant. They observe what is going on and ask questions of the workers about what they do. Then each student writes a report on making furniture.

Do you really think that each report will be exactly the same? Do you really think that there will not be "mutually exclusive" details in the reports?

That's an analogy for the creation accounts? I could see that it would be analogous if various groups of human beings were separated into different groups, and then watched different groups of creators creating different parts of the universe, and then the humans came up with very different accounts from each group, and slight differences in detail between individuals within the same groups.

Are you suggesting that some humans observed the creation of the universe, including, in many accounts, the creation of the first humans?

RAZD writes:

According to your "logic" the existence of any mutually exclusive details in these reports would be evidence that the furniture makers were products of human imagination.

Wrong. If two kids in the same group watching the same furniture being made by the same makers came up with the different "details" that:

(a) they were watching three men make a chair;

(b) they were watching two women make a cabinet;

then logic would tell you that one or other account (or both) must be an invention; and the beings involved in at least one, figments of the imagination.

That's what you get in the creation mythologies. Different characters making different worlds when they're supposed to be accounts of the same creation of the same world.

Even my version doesn't relate too well to the creation mythologies, because of the major points that (1) we can demonstrate the existence of furniture makers but not of supernatural creators, and (2) there is, to put it mildly, a distinct lack of evidence to support the idea that any humans watched the creation of the universe, and overwhelming evidence that we arrived on the scene long after the event.

You've entirely misunderstood the mutually exclusive argument in relation to the creation mythologies. It establishes widespread human invention and use of the imagination, but it is in no way intended to prove that there weren't real creators. That can't be done. If I could go around proving the non-existence of concepts like supernatural creators, elves, fairies, vampires etc., and do it for all the supernatural beings anyone could suggest, I'd be presenting a scientific fact, not a theory.

You like talking about logic, and I've suggested to you before that you frequently misunderstand how it relates to science. As I've said at least once in this thread, science explores the unknown. Laws and theories do not give you logical truths, or facts.

If you want logical constructs, examine this:

1) Human beings can and do invent supernatural beings.

2) The human imagination is the only known source of supernatural-being-concepts known to science.

Tentative conclusion or Theory: All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination.

Because the conclusion does not necessarily follow from the premises, the conclusion can never be regarded as a fact. The argument is inductive reasoning.

No scientific theories and laws can be arranged as deductive arguments that are both logically valid and sound (meaning the premises are verifiable). You would always end up with at least one unverifiable premise, or else you would have a fact, not a theory.

You're criticising something presented as a theory, not something that's presented as a fact.

(Good luck with the new company and I hope the new house isn't haunted) .


This message is a reply to:
 Message 51 by RAZD, posted 11-25-2010 12:31 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 54 by RAZD, posted 11-27-2010 4:52 PM bluegenes has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 54 of 222 (593534)
11-27-2010 4:52 PM
Reply to: Message 53 by bluegenes
11-26-2010 12:27 PM


Re: and still no evidence that bluegenes will actually address the issues ...
Hi bluegenes, still struggling with the basic concepts I see.

Making up supernatural entities has no bearing on supernatural entities being made up? You may not have noticed, but my theory is about human beings making things up; about figments of our imagination.

Making up intentionally fictional caricatures is not making up supernatural entities, that would take the additional step of verifying that they are in fact supernatural entities, which you have not done.

Seeing as this is rather unlikely, for an intentionally fictional caricature of your own concoction, you would likely have little hope of establishing that you are therefore talking about a supernatural entity, rather that just making some mental masturbations.

Now you may find such self-delusion to be personally satisfying, but I believe you will find that, like masturbation, you are not able to satisfy anyone else with it.

You seem to fail to see that it is the fact that humans can and do make supernatural beings up combined with the fact that human invention is the only source of supernatural-being-concepts known to science that leads to the theory that all supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination.

When you only consider populations of pure white swans and note that there are no black swans, and then conclude that black swans are a product of human imagination, you are begging the question, because you have excluded any non-white swans from consideration.

When you start with excluding evidence that there are black swans you reach invalid conclusions.

This is your argument - logical fallacy after logical fallacy. Mental wanking.

Feel free to present this evidence. I haven't seen any evidence for the actual existence of supernatural beings on this thread. ...

I only need to present the evidence that there are supernatural beings that people believe in, which has been done, and that there are documents that describe these supernatural entities, which has been done. It is your job to show they are products of human imagination.

... Evidence that people believe in them is not evidence that they exist, as I've explained. It's an undisputed fact that loads of people believe in them.

So why aren't you able to demonstrate that these supernatural beings are products of human imagination?

So why aren't you able to demonstrate that the IPU is a product of human imagination?

That is your claim - not that you can make up stuff.

See above. If you really think there's no difference between our knowledge of the existential state of private detectives as compared to that of supernatural beings, then I suggest that you're constructing a reality of your own in which to argue from.

And still you miss the point, simple as it is, that your logical construction should lead to the same conclusion for ghosts and private eyes --- IF it was a valid logical construction.

You don't get to special plead one conclusion for private eyes and then a different one for ghosts.

Wrong. If two kids in the same group watching the same furniture being made by the same makers came up with the different "details" that:
(a) they were watching three men make a chair;
(b) they were watching two women make a cabinet;
then logic would tell you that one or other account (or both) must be an invention; and the beings involved in at least one, figments of the imagination.

Once again you mess things up by starting with a premise that is not justified by the evidence, the pre-assumption that your view is correct.

There is no need to assume that the kids needed to be in "same group watching the same furniture being made by the same makers" in order for them to experience furniture making and develop what you call "mutually exclusive" explanations -- that is only necessary in your narrow view world to justify your opinion.

Are you suggesting that some humans observed the creation of the universe, including, in many accounts, the creation of the first humans?

Of course not, that would be illogical. The point is that even with first hand experiences that humans are likely to take away explanations that differ in details, so the existence of such differences is not a critical test of the validity of the actual universal truth behind the experience.

If we instead say that the furniture makers go to the schools and tell the kids in different groups how furniture is made, the chances of "mutually exclusive" explanations increases, because now the information is second hand and filtered by what the individual furniture makers say to each group of kids.

2) The human imagination is the only known source of supernatural-being-concepts known to science.

But not the only known source of "supernatural-being-concepts," as this excludes known existing documents involving supernatural entities.

When you only consider populations of pure white swans and note that there are no black swans, and then conclude that black swans are a product of human imagination, you are begging the question.

The fact that black swans do not fit your definition of white swans does not mean that they are not swans.

When you start with excluding evidence that there are black swans you reach invalid conclusions.

Enjoy.

Edited by RAZD, : clrty

Edited by RAZD, : ipu, clrty


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


• • • Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click) • • •

This message is a reply to:
 Message 53 by bluegenes, posted 11-26-2010 12:27 PM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 55 by bluegenes, posted 11-28-2010 8:59 AM RAZD has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 55 of 222 (593639)
11-28-2010 8:59 AM
Reply to: Message 54 by RAZD
11-27-2010 4:52 PM


Light relief.
RAZD writes:

Making up intentionally fictional caricatures is not making up supernatural entities, that would take the additional step of verifying that they are in fact supernatural entities, which you have not done.

Is that intentional comedy? Did you expect me to make models of my beings out of clay and breath life into them? Of course they're not externally real supernatural entities, they are figments of my imagination. And of course they're "intentionally" fictitious.

I was intentionally demonstrating that humans can and do make up supernatural beings.

As for caricatures, my dear little question avoider, I asked you in the last post:

bluegenes writes:

Which real supernatural beings (ones that have been confirmed to exist beyond all reasonable doubt) are my imaginary beings caricatures of? How would you know how to distinguish a "caricature" of a supernatural being from the real thing?

I think there were some other direct questions in the last post that went unanswered.

But I digress from your comedy:

RAZD writes:

Seeing as this is rather unlikely, for an intentionally fictional caricature of your own concoction, you would likely have little hope of establishing that you are therefore talking about a supernatural entity, rather that just making some mental masturbations.

Do you think I should have phrased my theory: "All supernatural beings are the product of human mental masturbations?" I certainly don't mind that phrase, but then I'm not the one in this debate who believes in any of them. If you want to redefine Deism scientifically as mental masturbation, go ahead. *

RAZD writes:

Now you may find such self-delusion to be personally satisfying, but I believe you will find that, like masturbation, you are not able to satisfy anyone else with it.

Are you "anyone else"? You use the phrase "self-delusion"……….

I should think that most (if not all) people reading the thread are already aware that human beings can and do make up supernatural beings. I thought you had agreed to this as well, and the need for the experiment was over. Now you seem to be saying that yes, we can make up fictional ones, but we can't make up real ones. Of course we can't invent real ones.

RAZD writes:

When you only consider populations of pure white swans and note that there are no black swans, and then conclude that black swans are a product of human imagination, you are begging the question, because you have excluded any non-white swans from consideration.

Didn't you mean "tentatively conclude", or better "theorize"? How could someone "note that there are no black swans", then theorize about them, without having considered them? It isn't logically possible.

RAZD writes:

When you start with excluding evidence that there are black swans you reach invalid conclusions.

Indeed. There are black swans known to science, which is why it would be very strange for someone to theorize that they're products of the human imagination. Even if there weren't, and only white swans had been observed, one would never eliminate the possibility of other coloured swans without having observed all swans directly. So, it would only be correct to theorise that all swans are white, and it wouldn't be considered a fact.

We would, of course, have to imagine the black swans until we knew of real ones, and could give them the scientific status of "real". This is exactly the situation we're in at the moment with all supernatural beings. We can't give any of them the scientific status of "real", and we can't actually observe their behaviour or characteristics, so we can only discuss our imagined concepts.

What's your point?

I'll help you with your attempt at analogy. If it's intended to describe what I'm doing with supernatural being-concepts, here's how it should read. When you observe populations of swans and note that you have observed only white swans, and then theorize that all swans are white, you must be considering the possibility of non-white swans, because you've stated a theory, rather than declaring a fact.

RAZD writes:

This is your argument - logical fallacy after logical fallacy…..

But it wasn't my argument, was it? It was just your incompetent attempt at analogy.

RAZD writes:

…..Mental wanking.

Now you are touching on an area in which you do have expertise, for the first time in the thread.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

Feel free to present this evidence. I haven't seen any evidence for the actual existence of supernatural beings on this thread. ...

I only need to present the evidence that there are supernatural beings that people believe in, which has been done, and that there are documents that describe these supernatural entities, which has been done.

No need to do either. Both are well known facts, as I said in my last post. I have linked to documents describing supernatural beings on this thread, but I don't think you have.

RAZD writes:

It is your job to show they are products of human imagination.

Really? Well, if there's no evidence to the contrary, then the only scientific conclusion possible is that the concepts come from their only known source. Just like raindrops from clouds and rabbits from other rabbits when you can't demonstrate other origins.

I thought you said you had documents that contained "objective empirical evidence" of the real existence of supernatural beings. I asked for them. Where can they be found? Such documentation should be famous, and I'm sure every EvC member would be fascinated to read such stuff for the first time in their lives.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

... Evidence that people believe in them is not evidence that they exist, as I've explained. It's an undisputed fact that loads of people believe in them.

So why aren't you able to demonstrate that these supernatural beings are products of human imagination?

I've given you examples of falsified beings who are believed in, like the flat earth god and the young earth god.

Do you mean demonstrate conclusively that they're all imaginary? Actually prove a scientific theory when they're considered unprovable? It's for the same reason that Pasteur wasn't able to conclusively demonstrate that all life comes from other life, and that Newton couldn't conclusively demonstrate that his laws were truly universal. They could only infer these things based on the available observations. What I can demonstrate is that the human imagination is the only source of supernatural beings known to science. Perhaps you'll eventually learn why it is that scientific theories are considered falsifiable rather than provable.

There are known exceptions to Newton's laws. You can't demonstrate a single exception to my theory, yet you claim that it's not a strong high confidence theory. You have no basis for that claim whatsoever.

RAZD writes:

And still you miss the point, simple as it is, that your logical construction should lead to the same conclusion for ghosts and private eyes --- IF it was a valid logical construction.

I pointed out that it was your construction, not mine, and gave you a basic lesson in inductive reasoning that you clearly haven't understood. You left out the premise (below) that does apply to ghosts, but doesn't to private-eyes. No wonder you end up with your silly conclusion.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

2) The human imagination is the only known source of supernatural-being-concepts known to science.

But not the only known source of "supernatural-being-concepts," as this excludes known existing documents involving supernatural entities.

Comedy again? People are the only source of documents known to science. Why should documented supernatural being concepts like Allah and Harry Potter be any different from the concepts in Australian Aboriginal orally transmitted mythology?

Or are you proposing an alternative "hypothesis" that books, as well as people, invent supernatural beings? That has exactly the same level of evidence in support of it as the "Hindu hypothesis", absolute zero, but I personally prefer it because it's funnier.

A little exercise:

quote:

He was torn from the rock, stretched my his own strength to tree height. His eyes were formed blue, as wells of water, and his hair was the black of the deepest dark night. On his shoulders rode the eagle and the owl.

quote:

She was created in the image of the unknown, decorated with skulls, snakes, and lacerated hands. There are no cracks in her body and she is a perfect monolith (a totality of intensity and self-containment, yet her features were square and decapitated).

Are these descriptions of supernatural beings known to have been believed in, or are they fantasy fiction, or are they "caricatures", or are they all three of the above? And whether they were believed in or not, how would you tell if they exist or not short of their manifestation? (Feel free to explain how you come to your conclusions).

*Rebel American Zen Mental Masturbator has a kind of very apt subtle poetry to it, I think.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 54 by RAZD, posted 11-27-2010 4:52 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 56 by RAZD, posted 11-28-2010 5:02 PM bluegenes has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 56 of 222 (593692)
11-28-2010 5:02 PM
Reply to: Message 55 by bluegenes
11-28-2010 8:59 AM


fraud is fraud, whether you delude yourself or not
Hi bluegenes

I was intentionally demonstrating that humans can and do make up supernatural beings.

Except that they are NOT supernatural beings: they are not actually capable of any supernatural behavior.

You can deceive yourself as much as you want, but you have provided no evidence for anything other than your imagination.

Of course they're not externally real supernatural entities, they are figments of my imagination. And of course they're "intentionally" fictitious.

And of course there is not one branch of legitimate science that relies in any way on fabricated evidence.

The fabrication of evidence in science is considered fraud. You are committing fraud when you use evidence that you have fabricated.

I should think that most (if not all) people reading the thread are already aware that human beings can and do make up supernatural beings. I thought you had agreed to this as well, and the need for the experiment was over. Now you seem to be saying that yes, we can make up fictional ones, but we can't make up real ones. Of course we can't invent real ones.

So why do you spend any time at all on such intentional fictional caricatures? What purpose is served by masturbating over tautological irrelevant nonsense? What holds you back from investigating other sources of supernatural entities?

Why don't you spend time instead looking into existing documents, to pick out descriptions of supernatural entities that are claimed by some people to exist, and show that they are products of human invention?

Why can't you demonstrate that the IPU is a product of human invention?

As for caricatures, my dear little question avoider, I asked you in the last post:
bluegenes writes:

Which real supernatural beings (ones that have been confirmed to exist beyond all reasonable doubt) are my imaginary beings caricatures of? How would you know how to distinguish a "caricature" of a supernatural being from the real thing?


I think there were some other direct questions in the last post that went unanswered.

Ah yes the old pseudoskeptic gambit, that others need to substantiate their claims and falsify yours while you just sit on your bum and make more unsubstantiated claims. You are the one that made a claim, so you need to substantiate it. Your claim, lest you forget is that:

quote:
The human imagination is the only known source of supernatural beings, ...
(Message 167 on the An Exploration Into"Agnosticism" as quoted in Message 1, the OP)

Not only have you not even attempted to substantiate it, you have ignored the several other possibilities I have brought up and substantiated by reference to existing documents.

All you have done is draw your line a little tighter so that you can pretend that such documents do not exist, ignore this evidence, and then loudly proclaim

quote:
Human invention is the only source of supernatural beings known to science.
(Message 26 on this thread)

Don't look at the information on black swans, only white swans exist in populations of pure white swans, so only look at the white swan populations ... there are no black swans documented in all white swan populations, so they must be a product of imagination?

Repeating your claim does not make it any more valid than it was the first time. Lest you forget (or attempt to ignore again) there are other possibilities noted in the world literature

quote:
On communication possibilites

Human invention is the only known source of supernatural beings. If you disagree, tell the world about the other known source or sources.

In several religions there are beliefs involving god/s appearing as humans or animals to assist people reach enlightenment or assist them in finding truth.

Many eastern religions believe in enlightenment, which involves a level of understanding universal truths.

Other religions claim that religious experiences are means to communicate with god/s.

And of course there are religions (like the australian one you listed above) that believe in dreamtime experiences.

That's four different ways that various religions have claimed to have a source of knowledge about supernatural beings\entities\etc. -- and ones that you should have been already aware of.

Your task, if you claim that "human invention is the only known source of supernatural beings," is to falsify these as means of having an outside source for concepts of supernatural beings\entities\etc.

It doesn't appear that you have done this.
(Message 14 of this thread)


And you still have not done it.

Of course if anyone cares to review Message 14 they will see that you have done nothing to substantiate your claims or defend your position other than dodging and making stuff up. Certainly there remains an absolute dearth of any evidence that supports your various contentions, just bluster and obfuscation.

That is not how science is done. Science is done by getting down in the trenches and doing the research to support the hypothesis, not make it up.

Indeed. There are black swans known to science, which is why it would be very strange for someone to theorize that they're products of the human imagination. Even if there weren't, and only white swans had been observed, one would never eliminate the possibility of other coloured swans without having observed all swans directly. So, it would only be correct to theorise that all swans are white, and it wouldn't be considered a fact.

Indeed. There are means of communication with supernatural entities listed and documented in many world religions, which is why it would be very strange for someone to theorize that they're products of human imagination. Even if there weren't, and only imaginary means of communication were known, one would never eliminate the possibility of other communication methods with supernatural entities without having observed all possible means of communication with supernatural entities directly.

So what are you waiting for?

Stop just assuming that you are correct and do the ground-work necessary to demonstrate evidence that you have something more than wishful thinking based on personal opinion.

Enjoy.


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


• • • Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click) • • •

This message is a reply to:
 Message 55 by bluegenes, posted 11-28-2010 8:59 AM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 57 by bluegenes, posted 11-29-2010 6:29 PM RAZD has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


(1)
Message 57 of 222 (593820)
11-29-2010 6:29 PM
Reply to: Message 56 by RAZD
11-28-2010 5:02 PM


bluegenes:100 million points; RAZD: Zero
RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

I was intentionally demonstrating that humans can and do make up supernatural beings.

Except that they are NOT supernatural beings: they are not actually capable of any supernatural behavior.

Well done. Would you like to list some extant beings that are capable of supernatural behaviour?

RAZD writes:

You can deceive yourself as much as you want, but you have provided no evidence for anything other than your imagination.

And of course there is not one branch of legitimate science that relies in any way on fabricated evidence.

The fabrication of evidence in science is considered fraud. You are committing fraud when you use evidence that you have fabricated.

Don't be silly. In the real world, I presented not only evidence, but essential proof that human beings can and do make up supernatural beings. Strictly speaking, and more correctly but clumsily phrased, "supernatural beings- concepts".

The theory, RAZD, is about the human mind imagining non-existent things, and that's what I was doing.

How you've got the idea into your head that these were supposed to be real when the whole point was to demonstrate our capacity for fabrication, I don't know.

The entire thread so far has been about imagined supernatural concepts. Even when we refer to "real" supernatural beings, it is an imagined concept, because we have not established the real external existence of any supernatural beings.

RAZD writes:

So why do you spend any time at all on such intentional fictional caricatures? Irrelevant nonsense?

Because you seemed to be questioning that humans can and do make such things up. Why is it irrelevant to establish a known source for the supernatural concepts we all have in our heads?

RAZD writes:

What holds you back from investigating other sources of supernatural entities?

That's what I'm waiting for. A source for our concepts other than human invention would be supernatural beings that are actually known to exist, and I can't find any. All I can find is our concepts, and that's all we have on the thread so far.

RAZD writes:

Why don't you spend time instead looking into existing documents, to pick out descriptions of supernatural entities that are claimed by some people to exist, and show that they are products of human invention?

When I did that with the creation mythologies, comparing them to what we know from cosmology, biology and geology, you went into denial, and replied with some meaningless emotion driven waffle about confirmation bias. You've since imagined up some underlying meaning to all these stories, without telling us what it is. Wow!

When I point out that the flat-earth creator and the young earth creator are effectively falsified, you choose to ignore the fact that it demonstrates widespread false belief when not one single true belief in a supernatural being has been established on this thread.

45% of American adults believe in a demonstrably false supernatural being-concept, and that's over 100 million people.

On the other side of the coin, we have yet to establish that one single human being is believing in a supernatural being concept that is demonstrably true.

That means that I have, effectively, infinitely more evidence on my side than you do on yours.

And you have the gall to describe my theory as weak!

RAZD writes:

Why can't you demonstrate that the IPU is a product of human invention?

I was particularly hoping, as you keep harping on about her, that you were going to demonstrate her existence for us, beyond reasonable doubt. I have to give you a chance, and you need all the help you can get. So, instead of going down the easy road and pointing out that the two adjectives used to describe her are mutually exclusive (perhaps a waste of time, because you'd probably give me some Hindu mystic "hypothesis" that pink is an invisible colour, or some such crap), I've left her for you to verify as real.

RAZD writes:

Ah yes the old pseudoskeptic gambit, that others need to substantiate their claims and falsify yours while you just sit on your bum and make more unsubstantiated claims. You are the one that made a claim, so you need to substantiate it.

The word "pseudoskeptic" seems to crop up as a sort of catch-all, when you're desperate and losing an argument. I expect we'll see a lot more of it in this thread. I must say, congratulations on cutting out the ironic constant repetition of the phrases "confirmation bias" and "cognitive dissonance." Did you finally find out what they mean?

RAZD writes:

All you have done is draw your line a little tighter so that you can pretend that such documents do not exist, ignore this evidence, and then loudly proclaim:

bluegenes writes:

Human invention is the only source of supernatural beings known to science.

Did I miss a link to some documents containing evidence that a supernatural being-concept of some kind is actually real? Which documents are you referring to? Not the Book of Moses, I hope. The Koran? I've read it long ago, and found no evidence at all of real supernatural beings in there. Lots of mentions of one concept in particular, but no evidence.

The tightening was necessary. "Known" is a difficult word. There are plenty of people who claim to "know" that one god or another exists. Not long ago I met a woman who told me that she "knew" she was a witch. Being familiar with your ways of arguing, I wanted to save you the trouble of asking me to falsify Joe Schizophrenic's opinion that he "knows" that the voices in his head come from angels.

What you're getting wrong, though, is that the fact that human invention is the only known source to science at the moment in no way stops us from establishing another. No-one's implying that scientific knowledge in general is anything other than massively incomplete.

RAZD writes:

Don't look at the information on black swans, only white swans exist in populations of pure white swans, so only look at the white swan populations ... there are no black swans documented in all white swan populations, so they must be a product of imagination?

Instead of complaining, why not tell me exactly where to look for the "black swans", instead of telling me where to look for people who believe in them. It's no good pointing to Buzsaw's posts as evidence that his god exists. They are only evidence that he believes in it.

RAZD writes:

Repeating your claim does not make it any more valid than it was the first time. Lest you forget (or attempt to ignore again) there are other possibilities noted in the world literature

In several religions there are beliefs involving god/s appearing as humans or animals to assist people reach enlightenment or assist them in finding truth.

I know. It would be better for our purposes here if they appeared in some more exotic form, then they could be caught on film, and we'd be well on the way towards falsification.

RAZD writes:

Many eastern religions believe in enlightenment, which involves a level of understanding universal truths.

I know. I've spent a lot of time in the east.

RAZD writes:

Other religions claim that religious experiences are means to communicate with god/s.

I know. I've had the "complete absence of time", experience myself, one commonly described, and it was quite striking. But no gods turned up.

RAZD writes:

And of course there are religions (like the australian
one you listed above) that believe in dreamtime experiences.


I know. I'm fond of that one, and read a lot about it around 30 yrs ago.

RAZD writes:

That's four different ways that various religions have claimed to have a source of knowledge about supernatural beings\entities\etc. -- and ones that you should have been already aware of.

I'm very well aware that there are many such claims. You haven't even covered the tip of the iceberg. Religious people frequently believe they have special "knowledge", but that is not "knowing", it is believing, and there's no evidence that there actually are real supernatural beings involved.

RAZD writes:

Your task, if you claim that "human invention is the only known source of supernatural beings," is to falsify these as means of having an outside source for concepts of supernatural beings\entities\etc.

Really? It's my task, is it? Is it part of your religious belief that scientific theories only become strong when they've falsified lots of unfalsifiable beliefs?

I don't do tasks at the behest of people who don't know the difference between belief and knowledge.

RAZD writes:

It doesn't appear that you have done this.


I haven't falsified the man in the moon yet, either, nor have I falsified Joe Schizophrenic's angels.

RAZD writes:

Of course if anyone cares to review Message 14 they will see that you have done nothing to substantiate your claims or defend your position other than dodging and making stuff up. Certainly there remains an absolute dearth of any evidence that supports your various contentions, just bluster and obfuscation.

More than 100 million false believers, and you can't demonstrate one single true believer. Stop fantasising.

RAZD writes:

That is not how science is done. Science is done by getting down in the trenches and doing the research to support the hypothesis, not make it up.

Is that the Hindu hypothesis you're talking about supporting with science? How many Hindus have we demonstrated to be believing in true supernatural beings so far? Not even one? Oh, dear. Don't mention the Hindu hypothesis again unless you can rectify that situation.

RAZD writes:

Indeed. There are means of communication with supernatural entities listed and documented in many world religions, which is why it would be very strange for someone to theorize that they're products of human imagination.

Why? A difference between theories about the colours of swans and theories about supernatural beings is that swans are known to exist. That's a massive difference.

And as so many religions have false creation stories, it would hardly be surprising if they also had false communication stories.

If you're taking religious documents as a good guide to reality, why don't you go out and stone someone to death? That's what the Taliban do, and the direction to do so is in their religious documents, and purported to come from a real supernatural being.

RAZD writes:

Even if there weren't, and only imaginary means of communication were known, one would never eliminate the possibility of other communication methods with supernatural entities without having observed all possible means of communication with supernatural entities directly.
So what are you waiting for?

I'll put up a magic-attracting antennae in my yard, and the next time your god communicates with you, could you ask him to drop me a line?

Alternatively, we could discuss neurology, and some of the things that are actually known about people who believe they are getting messages from invisible beings.

RAZD writes:

Stop just assuming that you are correct and do the ground-work necessary to demonstrate evidence that you have something more than wishful thinking based on personal opinion.

Stop just assuming that you are correct and do the ground-work necessary to demonstrate evidence that you have something more than wishful thinking based on personal opinion and religious desires.

I've got more than 100 million believers in a false supernatural being-concept. When will you show me just one person who believes in a demonstrably real supernatural being? Just one falsifies the theory that you claim is so weak.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 56 by RAZD, posted 11-28-2010 5:02 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 58 by RAZD, posted 01-18-2011 9:43 PM bluegenes has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 58 of 222 (601133)
01-18-2011 9:43 PM
Reply to: Message 57 by bluegenes
11-29-2010 6:29 PM


where's the objective empirical evidence?
bluegenes and RAZD only

Hi bluegenes, I've given you some time to reflect on your replies here.

Don't be silly. In the real world, I presented not only evidence, but essential proof that human beings can and do make up supernatural beings. Strictly speaking, and more correctly but clumsily phrased, "supernatural beings- concepts".

Curiously, I still cannot point to a single bit of empirical objective evidence that shows that any one specific concept of a supernatural being that can be found in religious literature or other documents of people that believe in the specific supernatural being is undeniably a product of human imagination.

Your made up concoctions are just that - fabrications, not evidence that is of the objective scientific variety regarding the issue you are claiming to discuss, that:

quote:
Message 167 on the 'An Exploration Into"Agnosticism" thread:
"All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination".

You're imaginary fabrications and popular fiction are not documents about supernatural concepts that are believed to exist. The fact that they are intentionally imagined does not mean that any other concept in necessarily imagined. Just because you want them to be imaginary does not mean that they are, and assuming that they are would just be confirmation bias on your part.

You apparently can't seem to understand this simple point. I provided you with an extensive explanation of why the logic you employed was invalid, along with several examples that absolutely showed that your logical structure provided false conclusions, and your failure or inability to accept this simple fact is strong evidence of cognitive dissonance.

In Message 167 on the An Exploration Into"Agnosticism" thread you asserted you had:

quote:
... plenty of evidence.

The fact that you needed to make up evidence shows, imho, that you have no other evidence to present, or we would not still be discussing your total lack of objective empirical evidence and you would not still be trying to make stuff up. Without such empirical objective evidence this statement of yours appears to be a fabrication, a falsehood, a lie.

Amazingly, science does not depend on made up evidence in any way.

In science, as you agreed in previous replies, theory is founded on a set of objective empirical evidence, not on opinion, belief or fantasy. With no substantiation of your claim to have "plenty of evidence" your claim that

quote:
... this is a strong theory ...

is nothing more than opinion and wishful thinking. As I stated at the beginning of this thread.

You can delude yourself all you want to, but I see nothing from you other than opinion, poor logic, cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias in accordance with your personal beliefs, and not a scientific approach to the development of a genuine scientific theory.

Why is it irrelevant to establish a known source for the supernatural concepts we all have in our heads?

Because, once again (cue Arlo Guthrie, with feeling), (a) it is given that people can make things up, (b) it is given that intentional fiction is actually fiction as intended, and (b) that you claimed that "All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination" - not just intentional fiction. So, logically, you need to look outside the bounds of intentional fiction before you begin to address this issue.

Just because people can make up concepts does not mean that any concept you wish to discuss is necessarily made up. Is that hard to understand? Do you understand that you cannot assume your conclusion in the premises?

Because you seemed to be questioning that humans can and do make such things up.

Please. Certainly this kind of statement should be beneath you, or you are admitting that you cannot read and understand what I have said. I have clearly stated that humans can and do make things up, the problem YOU have is that this does not mean that any one single concept is made up -- you need to actually demonstrate that it is made up.

You do this by starting with a basic concept and then provide the objective empirical evidence that demonstrates that it is made up.

That's what I'm waiting for. A source for our concepts other than human invention would be supernatural beings that are actually known to exist, and I can't find any. All I can find is our concepts, and that's all we have on the thread so far.

Are you really that inept? In science you get out and look, not wait for evidence to turn up on your doorstep and ring the doorbell.

When I did that with the creation mythologies, comparing them to what we know from cosmology, biology and geology, you went into denial, and replied with some meaningless emotion driven waffle about confirmation bias. You've since imagined up some underlying meaning to all these stories, without telling us what it is. Wow!

Curiously I cannot find mention of a single named entity in a single specific mythology where you actually demonstrated that it was made up, all I see is you making assumptions based on your opinions of the mythologies.

You claimed to find mutually exclusive elements in mythologies, and I have shown you a valid explanation for them. I have also shown you how children at a furniture factory can generate stories of furniture manufacture that will have "mutually exclusive" elements, and yet you cannot show that the employees of the furniture store are imaginary.

Once again, you are making assumptions that you base your conclusions on, and not presenting objective empirical evidence that a single named entity in a single specific mythology where you actually demonstrated that it was made up.

When I did that with the creation mythologies, comparing them to what we know from cosmology, biology and geology, ...

You still make the completely unfounded assumption that early humans recording their experiences would have a complete knowledge of all science, not just cosmology, biology and geology, and that they would completely understand and then accurately describe what they see.

Can you explain something you do not understand? I can't. I can come to some approximation based on my level of knowledge and my opinions and biases, but it is more likely to be wrong than right. Does that mean that the actual instance of what I tried to describe did not exist?

If a child cannot explain how a furniture factory works in great detail due to his lack of knowledge, does that mean that the factory does not exist? If a child explains something wrong, does that mean that the factory does not exist?

Can you explain why eye-witness accounts are generally not unquestioningly trusted in the courts of law, yet you expect a second-hand account to be absolutely accurate?

Really? It's my task, is it? Is it part of your religious belief that scientific theories only become strong when they've falsified lots of unfalsifiable beliefs?

No, it is part of the scientific process, as you agreed, that you start with a set of objective empirical evidence that you can show conforms to your hypothesis. You have yet to present a single piece of this kind of evidence to justify your claim.

The word "pseudoskeptic" seems to crop up as a sort of catch-all, when you're desperate and losing an argument. I expect we'll see a lot more of it in this thread. I must say, congratulations on cutting out the ironic constant repetition of the phrases "confirmation bias" and "cognitive dissonance." Did you finally find out what they mean?

Curiously, the pseudoskeptic keeps making up reasons to avoid presenting evidence to support his position.

I was particularly hoping, as you keep harping on about her, that you were going to demonstrate her existence for us, beyond reasonable doubt.

Typical. I have not made the claim that the IPU exists, while you have made the claim that it is a figment of human imagination, and thus you need to provide the evidence that demonstrates this.

This type of behavior is evident in your continued bluster and attempts to obfuscate your complete and absolute failure to demonstrate that a single bit of empirical objective evidence shows that any one specific concept of a supernatural being that can be found in religious literature (or other documents of people that believe in the specific supernatural being) is undeniably a product of human imagination. You made the claim, you need to substantiate it.

So where's the objective empirical evidence? Or is that just another figment of your imagination?

Without evidence this

quote:
,,, plenty of evidence.

is a lie.

And if that is a lie, then this

quote:
... this is a strong theory ...

is a delusion.

AND if that is a delusion, then this

quote:
All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination

is based on wishful thinking, personal beliefs, cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias.

Without any evidence I write Q.E.D. to my conclusion in Message 1:

quote:
What you have is wishful thinking and confirmation bias coupled to the logical fallacy of Affirming the Consequent.

Note that I will ignore any further posts of yours that do not present objective empirical evidence that establishes that a single entity must be a product of human imagination: pony up, or stop the charade.

Enjoy.

bluegenes and RAZD only

Edited by RAZD, : space


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


• • • Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click) • • •

This message is a reply to:
 Message 57 by bluegenes, posted 11-29-2010 6:29 PM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 59 by bluegenes, posted 01-19-2011 7:38 PM RAZD has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 816 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 59 of 222 (601316)
01-19-2011 7:38 PM
Reply to: Message 58 by RAZD
01-18-2011 9:43 PM


bluegenes: 1 billion+ points. RAZD: Zero
Happy New Year, RAZD.

RAZD writes:

Curiously, I still cannot point to a single bit of empirical objective evidence that shows that any one specific concept of a supernatural being that can be found in religious literature or other documents of people that believe in the specific supernatural being is undeniably a product of human imagination.

That certainly is curious. Here's a specific concept. The god who created the world in six days less than 10,000 years ago, and fabricated the first two human beings during that period of creation. As I've pointed out, at least 100,000,000 of your compatriots believe in a god concept fitting this description.

There's overwhelming "objective empirical evidence" that such a creation never took place, and therefore that the "specific concept of a supernatural being" described cannot exist.

As I said, it certainly is curious. There's another guy on this forum who also calls himself "RAZD" and who spends a lot of time on science threads presenting evidence against this particular specific SB -concept.

RAZD writes:

Your made up concoctions are just that - fabrications, not evidence that is of the objective scientific variety regarding the issue you are claiming to discuss, that: "All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination"

.

Of course they are fabrications. As I've explained repeatedly, they are merely evidence (in fact, proof) that human beings can and do make up supernatural being-concepts. As you're now in agreement with this, there should be no need for me to imagine up any more. Human fabrication is the subject of my theory. You're repeatedly claiming that demonstrating human fabrication is not scientific evidence for human fabrication. I'm wondering how long you'll take to realise how stupid that is.

RAZD writes:

You're imaginary fabrications and popular fiction are not documents about supernatural concepts that are believed to exist.

For my imaginings, that's true (although if Dennis Markuze has read the thread, I wouldn't be 100% sure of that). But be careful with popular fiction. People can be found who believe in specific supernatural concepts that come from popular fiction. In the discussion here, most don't believe in a literal Middle-Earth, but some appear to, or at least think it's a serious question. If we could search the entire world, I'd bet on finding some people who literally believe that Tolkien's world exists along with all its magical characters. The same goes for Harry Potter.

Vampire concepts are old, but the ones who transform into bats come from nineteenth and twentieth century fiction, and there will certainly be people who actually believe in these modern ones.

I believe in vampires

RAZD writes:

The fact that they are intentionally imagined does not mean that any other concept in necessarily imagined. Just because you want them to be imaginary does not mean that they are, and assuming that they are would just be confirmation bias on your part.

This illustrates your misunderstanding of the point, again. Of course the fact that people can and do make up supernatural beings-concepts does not necessarily mean that all such concepts are made up. That's one reason why "All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination" is properly stated as a theory, not as a fact. Human invention is, as I keep pointing out, their only source known to science, just as adult rabbits are the only known source of baby rabbits, and clouds are the only known source of raindrops.

Science goes for best explanations. It certainly doesn't take confirmation bias to theorize that all supernatural beings - concepts come from their only known source. It would require confirmation bias to believe that Tolkien's characters, vampires, fairies, or any other supernatural beings actually exist on the present state of evidence on this thread, or anywhere else.

RAZD writes:

The fact that you needed to make up evidence shows, imho, that you have no other evidence to present, or we would not still be discussing your total lack of objective empirical evidence and you would not still be trying to make stuff up. Without such empirical objective evidence this statement of yours appears to be a fabrication, a falsehood, a lie.
Amazingly, science does not depend on made up evidence in any way.

Are you really this obtuse? As I've repeatedly explained, I was making up supernatural being - concepts merely to make the simple point that humans can and do make them up. This was only because you seemed to be disputing the point which, frankly, no sane thinking person would do.

RAZD writes:

In science, as you agreed in previous replies, theory is founded on a set of objective empirical evidence, not on opinion, belief or fantasy.

Yes. So why did you keep bringing up this Hindu "hypothesis" of yours? And why do you keep putting forward a distinction between supernatural beings-concepts that people actually believe in and known fictions if you're not presenting belief as evidence?

So, we can agree that people believing in any given supernatural being - concept is certainly zero evidence for that concept's actual existence. Good.

RAZD writes:

Because, once again (cue Arlo Guthrie, with feeling), (a) it is given that people can make things up, (b) it is given that intentional fiction is actually fiction as intended, and (b) that you claimed that "All supernatural beings are figments of the human imagination" - not just intentional fiction. So, logically, you need to look outside the bounds of intentional fiction before you begin to address this issue.

Would you like to give me a list of SB concepts which are known not to have originated as intentional fiction? It might be difficult to judge which ancient seers and prophets genuinely believed the concepts they came up with, and which didn't.

RAZD writes:

Just because people can make up concepts does not mean that any concept you wish to discuss is necessarily made up.

Of course. Which is why no-one on this thread has been arguing that. Why do you need to mischaracterize my argument?

RAZD writes:

Is that hard to understand? Do you understand that you cannot assume your conclusion in the premises?

Have you still not learned the difference between inductive reasoning and deductive reasoning? And between scientific theories and scientific facts? And see above. If you want to make up an argument and attribute it falsely to me, there's no point in complaining about what you've made up.

Tell me, why do you think "All raindrops come from clouds" is a weak theory, and why do you think "All baby rabbits are born from adult rabbits" is a weak theory, and why do you think "All supernatural beings are products of the human imagination " is a weak theory?

All three use inductive reasoning to attribute things to their only known respective sources. None of them can be described as facts, because they cannot be conclusively proven.

You like talking about "confirmation bias". Tell me if you think one of the three is weaker than the others, and if you do think this, tell me why without demonstrating confirmation bias.

Bear in mind that this forum is littered with examples of supernaturalists showing clear confirmation bias in their attacks on scientific theories. The other guy who calls himself "RAZD" keeps accusing them of this.

RAZD writes:

Are you really that inept? In science you get out and look, not wait for evidence to turn up on your doorstep and ring the doorbell.

Ah! I wasn't aware that some places in the world were better than others for observing supernatural beings. Which environments would you recommend? I've travelled the world extensively and so far I've never observed a scrap of empirical evidence for the real existence of any SB concept. What's it like in Rhode Island? Good for elf hunting?

I've seen plenty of evidence of belief in all kinds of concepts, but, as you rightly point out, belief alone isn't scientific evidence. So, people believing in a god who hates gays, for example, does not give that concept's real existence any support at all, and the concept remains on the same evidential status in relation to existence as Harry Potter and Gandalf. Absolute zero.

RAZD writes:

bluegenes writes:

When I did that with the creation mythologies, comparing them to what we know from cosmology, biology and geology, you went into denial, and replied with some meaningless emotion driven waffle about confirmation bias. You've since imagined up some underlying meaning to all these stories, without telling us what it is. Wow!

Curiously I cannot find mention of a single named entity in a single specific mythology where you actually demonstrated that it was made up, all I see is you making assumptions based on your opinions of the mythologies.

Jewish mythology. The Jewish tribal god who created the world in six days less than 10,000 years ago, whatever name you prefer for him. See above. Over 100 million believers in this concept in your country alone, and the concept is destroyed by empirical evidence.

And, of course, you cannot give me one example of one person believing in an SB concept that demonstrably exists.

Let's add more than 1 billion Muslims to this. The Koran describes an SB concept who gave his final word to Mohammed, and literally created the first two humans. Nearly all Muslims take this literally, and they are 1.5 billion in total. All the empirical evidence shows us, beyond reasonable doubt, that humans evolved as a group from other animals. So, we're at well over 1 billion beliefs in human invented SB concepts. The score is not 1 billion to one, but more than 1 billion to zero.

Few scientific theories have the statistical support that mine does.

RAZD writes:

You claimed to find mutually exclusive elements in mythologies, and I have shown you a valid explanation for them.

You certainly haven't. You first claimed that they were allegorical (without actually demonstrating that they were, or what any of them were allegories for) and then, when I pointed out that that would make the actual described SB concepts fictional, you started to waffle about Hindu beliefs as if religious people believing in something was scientific evidence for its veracity, when you now agree that it's not. You're all over the place

RAZD writes:

I have also shown you how children at a furniture factory can generate stories of furniture manufacture that will have "mutually exclusive" elements, and yet you cannot show that the employees of the furniture store are imaginary.

And your analogy to creation myths would be better if the children came up with different numbers of employees of different descriptions making the exact same piece of furniture. Which would mean that at least some of the employee concepts were imaginary. But it's still rubbish, because furniture factory employees are known to exist, and are known to be found in furniture factories. And you describe the children as observing something directly, when you know very well that our ancestors were not around to observe the formation of this planet. I'll show you how to make appropriate analogies.

A group of children go playing in the woods. They return home to the village, and tell their parents that they fell into a time warp and saw some wood elves constructing a mound in a clearing in the wood, covering it with grassy turf, and planting wild flowers on it hundreds of years previously. When questioned separately, they are inconsistent on the number of elves involved, the means used to construct the mound, and the tools used. The accounts taken literally are mutually exclusive. The adult villagers are therefore disinclined to believe the kids' story, although, at a later date, the kids demonstrate that there is a grassy mound in a clearing. All observations of the mound by the adults reveal no signs that it is anything other than a normal natural formation, and there's no evidence of intent in its construction at all.

They don't believe the kids, except for one daft old bugger called RAZD. He tells the story of a guru in ancient India who believed that all the stories that children tell about elves and fairies and magical little mound creators are actually distorted descriptions of the same real little magical mound creators. This is his idea of evidence.

The other adults laugh.

RAZD writes:

You still make the completely unfounded assumption that early humans recording their experiences would have a complete knowledge of all science, not just cosmology, biology and geology, and that they would completely understand and then accurately describe what they see.

What!? I think you've completely lost the plot.

RAZD writes:

Can you explain something you do not understand? I can't. I can come to some approximation based on my level of knowledge and my opinions and biases, but it is more likely to be wrong than right. Does that mean that the actual instance of what I tried to describe did not exist?

What I'm pointing out is that the creation myths do not describe the formation of the universe or this solar system or this planet at all. They are like the myth of the building of the giant's causeway that I brought up earlier. An Irish giant builds it across to Scotland in order to challenge the Scot to come and compete with him. That is not something about the volcanic processes that actually formed it. It is complete fiction, as much as Harry Potter. But some people were taking the giant explanation seriously as recently as the 17th century, probably later (and possibly even now).

RAZD writes:

If a child cannot explain how a furniture factory works in great detail due to his lack of knowledge, does that mean that the factory does not exist? If a child explains something wrong, does that mean that the factory does not exist?

Can you explain why eye-witness accounts are generally not unquestioningly trusted in the courts of law, yet you expect a second-hand account to be absolutely accurate?

Second hand accounts? Are you declaring a religious belief that the creation myths are "second hand accounts" of something somebody witnessed? And how is kids looking at something being made by people analogous to our ancestors not witnessing the formation of this planet and the life on it?

If someone explained the existence of the Empire State building by saying that it sprouted from a magical rock buried in the earth and grew, then they would have hit the level of accuracy of the creation myths. Think of myths that explain things like a river being formed by the tears of a goddess who had lost out in love. That is not a truth distorted over time, or because it’s a "second hand account". Like the giants' causeway story, it's a complete fabrication that bears no relation to how rivers actually come into being. Remember, we're talking about scientific empirical evidence of how things happen. In relation to our evidence, we can see clearly that the SB concepts described in the creation mythologies are figments of the human imagination.

RAZD writes:

No, it is part of the scientific process, as you agreed, that you start with a set of objective empirical evidence that you can show conforms to your hypothesis. You have yet to present a single piece of this kind of evidence to justify your claim.

Why are you lying? I've established that human invention is the only source of SB concepts known to science, and that belief in demonstrably false concepts is the norm.

RAZD writes:

Curiously, the pseudoskeptic keeps making up reasons to avoid presenting evidence to support his position.

Are you now describing yourself as a pseudoskeptic? Your current position seems to be that my theory is very weak. But a characteristic of very weak theories is that they should be easily falsified. It only takes the establishment of the actual real existence of one SB concept out of the many thousands to falsify the theory.

So what evidence do you have to support the position that my theory is weak? Remember, supernatural beliefs aren't scientific evidence in themselves, as you agreed above.

RAZD writes:

Typical. I have not made the claim that the IPU exists, while you have made the claim that it is a figment of human imagination, and thus you need to provide the evidence that demonstrates this.

Be careful. No biologist can conclusively prove that a single fossilized animal that you point to actually evolved from other different animals. You are making the kinds of demands that the more naïve supernaturalist creationists often make of science. That's why I've ignored that request.

You haven't made the claim that the IPU exists, but you haven't recognized the point that the only known source of such concepts is human invention. That, therefore, is the scientific best explanation for any given SB concept, just as when you feel a raindrop fall on your skin, the best explanation of its source is a cloud, not an angel pissing from above.

As it happens, the IPU is one that can be reasonably demonstrated to be false because the two adjectives describing her are mutually exclusive, as I've mentioned before, so the concept is a logical impossibility. But had you picked the universe creating god who hates gays (and you're usually keen on SB concepts that are actually believed in), then I couldn't falsify that.

It shows your basic misunderstanding, once again, of why some things are stated as scientific theories (they can't be proven but can be falsified), and others are stated as facts. There are many examples of unfalsifiable SB concepts you could have picked, and, as I've said before, a general claim like "elves exist" can never be falsified whether or not they actually do exist.

RAZD writes:

Note that I will ignore any further posts of yours that do not present objective empirical evidence that establishes that a single entity must be a product of human imagination: pony up, or stop the charade.

Don't be childish. If you don't accept the empirical evidence that the Young Earth Creationists' supernatural being concept is a human invention, then go and argue the point with that other guy called RAZD who keeps posting on the science threads.

And if you don't accept that we have excellent empirical evidence on this thread that more than 1 billion people are believing in imagined SB concepts, then you don't know what "objective empirical evidence" is.

You haven't shown that one single person in this world is believing in an SB concept that actually exists, and your pathetic waffling about confirmation bias and cognitive dissonance is because you can't do this, can you?

A debate couldn't be more lopsided.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 58 by RAZD, posted 01-18-2011 9:43 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 60 by RAZD, posted 01-19-2011 8:19 PM bluegenes has responded
 Message 127 by RAZD, posted 03-02-2011 6:07 PM bluegenes has not yet responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 20326
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 60 of 222 (601319)
01-19-2011 8:19 PM
Reply to: Message 59 by bluegenes
01-19-2011 7:38 PM


STILL NO EVIDENCE
Hi bluegenes, you still miss the point

There's overwhelming "objective empirical evidence" that such a creation never took place, and therefore that the "specific concept of a supernatural being" described cannot exist.

Saying that there is "overwhelming "objective empirical evidence" that such a creation never took place" is

A - NOT providing the evidence.
B - NOT evidence that a specific supernatural entity does not exist.

Start with some ACTUAL "objective empirical evidence" and I will read more of your post next time, until then I see no point in participating in your obvjious, plentiful and obdurate attempts to avoid the issue of actual evidence.

Enjoy.


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by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
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This message is a reply to:
 Message 59 by bluegenes, posted 01-19-2011 7:38 PM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 61 by bluegenes, posted 01-19-2011 9:26 PM RAZD has responded

  
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