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Author Topic:   I Know That God Does Not Exist
Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2722 of 2806 (885174)
03-26-2021 12:29 AM
Reply to: Message 2721 by Raphael
03-25-2021 9:55 PM

Re: You The Man
This is going to be difficult to explain. I don’t think you can wrap your head around the concept. You are so steeped in belief you cannot imagine a philosophy that eschews such a thing.

I cannot accept a belief statement. I need the science to accept and approve such a statement.

You have already tried to argue that science is a belief system on par with your made up religious bs. As I’ve already said to Phat in another thread the difference in efficacy has been established and recognized for quite some time, now. I'm afraid it's well past time to think anyone here could effectively challenge the conclusion already reached that science is the superior ontology. Belief-based systems have no efficacy since they have no reality.

The assumption that the scientific method is the only arbiter for how knowledge about truth is gained (epistemology) is an unproveable faith claim.

I look forward to seeing your evidence of this conjecture. Show us these other arbiters of knowledge. Show us their fruits. Show us the reality they reflect and model. We will determine their worth.

And you should certainly understand that, in science, provable and unprovable are concepts with no meaning. We deal only with what is called best evidence and, the amount of it, the preponderance of the evidence. No matter how strong the evidence, no matter how conclusive the facts can be, science realizes we cannot ever know everything so all conclusions, even our most sacred and cherished laws of the universe, are tentative pending further data.

We don’t believe anything.

Where did you find this faith claim, and what objective knower of Truth verified it?

In a high school physics text. From there things got complex.

There is no objective knower of truth. There is only the consensus of the priests, potentates and professors for whom a specific topic is a scientific passion. A consensus of the scientific community, we call it. No, not every biologist is as influential in a discussion of the CMB as a physicist would so the consensus is reserved to the knowledge experts in the specific field. That leaves out anyone who thinks they can speak to any scientific endeavor without the intellectual and academic chops to stand, be recognized and be heard.

My opinion, your opinion, my interpretation, your interpretation mean nothing. The science is tentatively what the chorus of the discipline says it is today with provision to change with new data tomorrow.

Fortunately, most of what we are finding is quite stable and allows us to predict what should happen next and then watch the universe unfold just as predicted. That is the true sign of understanding reality. Accurate prediction is an imperative for our best science. Accurate prediction is the key to any ontology that seeks to claim an understanding of reality.

I'll probably be stressing those keys to reality in this discussion. I'm a scientist. I can't help it.

Until those questions are verified I will question your bias just as you question mine

Just so there is no misunderstanding, I intend to bias everything with the science. Everything.

If you make a statement without evidence I will challenge its reality, as you should me.

It would be like dismissing all donuts because you only ever had an apple fritter and hated it

Who could hate an apple fritter? I’ll take both that and the bearclaw.

From these quotes I can see you reject some pretty specific theological systems and ways of interpreting the Hebrew Scriptures

No, you don’t see. You haven’t fathomed the depth of the rejection of all things belief-based. I do not reject some specific theological systems. I reject them all. I am not just atheist I am anti-theist.

And what is your major question?? I'm ready.

Let's do it.

You believe.


I know it’s complicated. You want to get into how and what and other elements, please feel free.

What is it you believe? What informed your belief? What caused you to open your eyes and see?

What evidence, however you care to define it, convinced you to drink the kool-aid?

Apologies on my slow response time friends, middle of seminary midterms for me so a bit swamped

As a teacher or a student or both? If you’re a grad student trying to get by I can understand you treading frantically trying to stay upright. I was a teaching grad student in a former life. NoDoze and coffee, with the occasional pizza. Good times. Enjoy.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Edited by AZPaul3, : considerable polish

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2721 by Raphael, posted 03-25-2021 9:55 PM Raphael has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 2723 by FLRW, posted 03-27-2021 4:09 PM AZPaul3 has seen this message
 Message 2724 by Raphael, posted 03-29-2021 10:35 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2730 of 2806 (885268)
03-31-2021 2:49 AM
Reply to: Message 2724 by Raphael
03-29-2021 10:35 PM

Re: You The Man
I cannot accept a belief statement. I need the science to accept and approve such a statement.

But you already accept a belief statement. Haha. You believe the scientific method is the only path to knowing truth. That is not provable or testable and so, a belief statement.

What do you think the last 300 years have been all about? Do you think the priests, mullahs and sadhus, all of a sudden after millennia, decided to up their game and spiritually conjure technology and innovation the likes of which this species had never seen before?

Unless you want to argue against the reality of history there is no doubt that the pursuit of evidence and the refinement of science, still ongoing, is what spurred the explosive growth in our human knowledge base and understanding of the universe. In 5000 years nothing in religion or woo-woo-anything ever came close to showing us the laws of the universe and the reality of existence that science has given us in less than 300.

You aren’t yearning for the 1500s are you, Raph? My understanding is that time wasn’t all that pleasant. They didn’t have bearclaws back then. Worse yet, that was before Häagen-Dazs chocolate ice cream. It took dedicated scientists working slavishly in test kitchens using all the skills science gave them to conceive and create these wonders of the secular scientific world. At least I don’t think Nestlé’s is a church. I might be wrong.

Interesting. Is science a superior ontology? How is such a thing determined? When was this decided? By what objective source was this determined?

This might help - though I don’t like their syntax using truth for tentative conclusion. Philosophers, what can you say.

Scientific Progress (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Now this is just one of dozens of assessments by philosophers, scientists, amateur secular scholars (ASSs) such as myself. You can look them up. They all say pretty much the same thing – science rules.

And that stands very high. Unless you can show me a more productive, more accurate and more useful way to model reality, then science is the standard by which ALL else is to be measured.

You claim belief-based systems are not based in reality, but you can't possibly know this for certain. In reality, you believe, by faith, for this to be the case.

No. The empirical evidence is pretty straight forward. Belief-based, reality-based. It’s all kinda right there in the name isn’t it? It wouldn’t be belief-based if it wasn’t … well … belief-based. Rather self-evident there Raph?

I understand your motivation to obfuscate. If science really is THAT powerful at revealing reality then what chance do emotional delusions, ouija boards or faith have as explanatory frameworks? None. After science there appears nothing in reality that any of these others can discover.

Unless you can show otherwise.

However in the process of it all the thinkers totally abandoned any other way of discerning reality.

Oh? Like what? Tea leaves? Wishful thinking? Communion? Entrails? Ahh! I know – astrology!

However, the decision to prioritize reason above all other things as the epistemological tool is merely that, a decision, a faith choice.

It’s a choice of appropriate tool for the appropriate job. Not based on faith but on demonstrable success in the past.

You’re really having a hard time with that concept.

Tools that actually give accurate results are superior. As far as anyone … anyone … can show the only tools with that demonstrable body of success are ones provided by our science.

So nowadays we are now left with a paradox. The scientific method is a method used to test things. And yet scientists who hold to a more strict scientism (as I perceive you to be) are not open to testing the test or even considering other epistemological tools.

No paradox. I’m thinking you don’t do much science. Science is tested multiple gazillion times a day. Every time our knowledge base increases, every time the science works, every time science (like with covid) saves humanity or saves the life of an 8-year old from leukemia, science has met and passed its test.

The facts we have show that religion fails. Miserably. Prayer, faith, devotional mumbling in an apse somewhere, fails to solve any of these, or any other, problems.

Again, can you show otherwise?

I am skeptical of any person who claims to have a process with a monopoly on truth discernment, religious or non-religious alike.

Truth discernment? What is that? Another religious strawman?

Again, I don’t think you science much. You are not familiar enough with its use and limitations.

We may love our equations, theories and mathematics but no one ever confuses evidence, even the strongest evidence, with truth or proof. It’s a philosophy thing. Our creed. A mantra. Everything is tentative. There is no proof. There is no universal truth. There is only evidence and its rational, agreed upon, interpretation.

In fact the only universal truth ever is that religious people are nuts. I have that from an impeccable source that cannot be questioned, seen, felt, heard, or if catholic, tasted.

Perhaps you are surprised to hear this from me, but nobody really knows anything about anything. Rather, all is faith.

No. Objective reality exists and is discernible, and understandable, using our properly functioning senses. Yes, those senses are objectively calibrated by group feedback. Peer review. Mom and dad, friends and colleagues, all telling you it’s there. The chair really is there. Maybe. Try kicking it.

Therefore, the question is, in what will you put your faith?


We don’t believe anything.

But of course you do! You enter into your entire process with an epistemology bias towards a certain process (the scientific method).

As I said, I don’t think you can conceive of a philosophy without belief. We are not talking a definition of “belief” like opinion or favorite flavor but something much deeper. You seem to need that rote blank unexplainable emotional feeling of surety based on hope. Faith. Belief.

I have actual facts, a demonstrable history, of the success of science modeling reality. You have abandoned your evidence-based lip service for your belief-based foundation. Objective reasoning has not been evident in your words here. It appears as all subjective emotion.

What if there are truths untestable by that process? (I would argue there are).

Like what? Specifics, please.

How might you go about testing whether or not we are living in a simulation by an unobservable entity?

Serious? You and company haven’t thunk this one through?

Well, if this is a simulation it is sooo good it is indistinguishable from a reality. It is, de facto, our reality. That will not stop us from continuing to study our reality, wherever that leads us, using our scientific methods.

How would you test whether or not you love your mother, or even if love exists at all?

My departed mommy said she loved me. I felt that. I knew the emotion. In the context of my humanity that emotion was real. The chemical stew that is me really had the feels. That feeling is a fact. It is an evident part of my reality. And by observation I see/hear/read the same emotion in others. Emotions are demonstrable products of human existence. Love exists.

The science says it’s the release of oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin in response to physical stimuli, like hearing my mommy’s words or feeling her embrace.

Better living through chemistry.

Too long. I'm going to break this up into two posts.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2724 by Raphael, posted 03-29-2021 10:35 PM Raphael has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 2734 by Raphael, posted 04-01-2021 11:10 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2731 of 2806 (885269)
03-31-2021 2:53 AM
Reply to: Message 2724 by Raphael
03-29-2021 10:35 PM

Re: You The Man
Part 2 - From Message 2730

There is no objective knower of truth.

The Scriptures contend that Truth is actually a person, that Truth is aware of you and has an agenda: your freedom, healing and joy.

And what evidence do you have for this? The bible? Sounds like a statement of faith to me.

"Any objective knower of truth is not testable or controllable by the scientific method."

Yah, being non-existent makes it hard to be testable by any method let alone science.

Can anyone show the efficacy of any other method? Again, I hear a statement of faith, unless you can physically show us your god using some other non-science method. That would be cool.

Can you show your objective knower of truth actually exists, has power and knowledge, and lives in a golden palace in the sky, hates humans but likes putting his children’s pictures on burnt toast? Can you show this? Can you show any part of it?

Ok, I’m just being an ass. I’m gonna go get a glass of wine.

I just think it is important to be honest about the places where we only believe things by faith.

You mean the crazy woo-woo cults that can believe anything because faith has no limit?

I don’t think that’s important at all.

What good is a tool that explains everything by explaining nothing? A faith, a belief, can center on anything. The only rules are the creeds of the cults and they are so hopelessly in conflict. Anything, absolutely anything, your heart desires, true or not, actual or not, can be your belief. It’s worthless.

Science gives us actual, demonstrable, repeatable, deep understanding of reality. Belief gives us 9/11.

Btw, what do you believe on aliens? Almond eyes or slits?

I have been honest about mine, and yet you seem reluctant to... That's ok, but I am interested in why certainty is so valuable to you? You say you are a scientist, and yet I sense a refusal to be skeptical about your foundational presuppositions.

The skepticism is always there. It’s built into the framework.

There is also the recognition that our models of reality are sooo good, so repetitious, so predictive, that skepticism of the philosophy that produced them is no longer reasonable. Question the specific protocols and the measurement methodologies. Be skeptical of the analysis and the conclusions. And be skeptical that they followed a proper scientific method. The philosophy of science as practiced in this species is open to improvement but no longer warrants skepticism of its power to scope deeper into reality. And with accuracy that improves by orders of magnitude every year.

The questions about the power and efficacy of science have been answered and those answers keep coming in book loads of new understand every day. I no longer need to be question my table saw. It is my tool. There is no other toolbox available. At least not one that can actually do anything.

Unless you have one? Have you one? Will you show it to me?

Well that is fine, haha, as long as you know it is a bias based on an unproveable faith claim and is not actually objective or necessarily true.

The superiority of science to model reality IS unprovable. We don’t do proof.

The preponderance of the evidence, the hard discernable physical facts, cannot be dismissed. Comparing advances in knowledge, culture, philosophy and human comfort from science with those from faith leaves faith in the dirt. You guys have done nothing but war for 5000 years. All human advancement came from science and science-minded people.

There is a reason we exclusively use science when we want to know something. It works. Exceptionally well. History tells us this. The facts cannot be denied.

Contrary to popular belief, faith is based on evidence. However, not all true things are testable, and not all testable things are true.

Nothing is true, only evidenced. Ok so the evidence is sometimes so strong we can say with a straight layman’s face that this is true, but that just means it’s way strong science awaiting, but not expecting, anything to change it.

Well, I suppose if we kick the dictionary down a few grades we can talk of facts being true as in “the sun came up”. Factual, true, but not on the level of a universal truth, examples of which I can’t recall. Are there any?

I'm curious to understand, why are you anti-theist?

Because theology has been an intellectual chain of slavery to the human mind and a violent, bloody, war culture in every society. I’m still skeptical that early homo benefited in any major way from superstition, but we are well past that stage in our evolution and we no longer need the violence and the stupid restrictions on thought.

It is time for religion to die. Unfortunately, it probably won’t be tonight.

Surely a scientist would acknowledge there are unknowable things about the universe and take more of an agnostic stance, no?

There are unknowable things in this universe that are reasonable to ask questions about because they are evidenced by logical extensions of our knowledge base. There are unknowable wild-assed speculations evidenced by personal emotion and incredulity not worth the time to contemplate.

The unknowable’s in the realm of the universe are no concern since they are unknowable. For example, anything outside the horizon of the visible universe can never be known to us. There is no use speculating what is there, besides more of what is here. Nothing here can have any effect on anything there and vice versa. We will/can never know. There is no knowledge there to be agnostic about.

The wild-assed speculations, like your supernatural superstitions, have nothing in reality that holds them up as intellectually, let alone physically, viable. It’s not an “I don’t know” thing. It’s a “this is worthless” thing. There is no knowledge there to contemplate. There is no knowledge there to be agnostic about.

You want to talk about women, ok, agnostic. I never did figure them out. So what else am I supposed to be agnostic about? The stuff I don’t know is legion so there is a whole big bunch of agnostic.

But, you may be talking about some other level.

So. You believe. Why?

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2724 by Raphael, posted 03-29-2021 10:35 PM Raphael has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 2739 by Raphael, posted 04-08-2021 8:49 PM AZPaul3 has seen this message

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2736 of 2806 (885292)
04-02-2021 12:50 PM
Reply to: Message 2734 by Raphael
04-01-2021 11:10 PM

Re: You The Man
Continued in part 2 tomorrow!

Take your time. There is other life out there we all need to live.

And I know the re-read ad infinitum syndrome. I suffer its effects as well.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2734 by Raphael, posted 04-01-2021 11:10 PM Raphael has taken no action

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2738 of 2806 (885375)
04-08-2021 6:06 PM
Reply to: Message 2734 by Raphael
04-01-2021 11:10 PM

Re: You The Man
A week is long enough. I want to respond without waiting for your second half.

If things change, as they inevitably will, then we will address those later.

I am merely skeptical of any who would claim to elevate the scientific method as the only epistemological process.

I haven’t much choice. There doesn’t seem to be any other “evidence” process, TRVTH process, knowledge or reality process that matches science. If I had a sharper tool I’d use it.

Maybe you’ll show me one?

I have no problem with the voice of our collective experts having consensus on something. Again I'm not against science, in fact usually, in my faith circles, I am an advocate for championing science as a vital part of a wholistic faith.

Hmm. Reasonable. If we can lose the faith part but keep the holistic physics we may have something here.

I'd even be willing to say "the science rules" if you were to provide nuance on what the science rules over. I simply believe there are truths untestable by the scientific method. That does not mean I hate the method or even disagree with the way it is used. I simply recognize its limitations.

What limitations? Science rules over everything. You know. Life, the universe and everything. There is nothing that cannot be science-ed. Did I just make a new word?

I read a handful of the link you posted … I found this quote in particular to be interesting:

Realist theories of scientific progress take truth to be an important goal of inquiry. This view is built into the classical definition of knowledge as justified true belief: if science is a knowledge-seeking activity, then it is also a truth-seeking activity.

I know. Philosophers are so full of themselves. As if “truth” exists.

Unless “true” is defined as “evidenced structure” or “evidenced model parameter” the only truths are the factual happenings documented in the past. It was 91⁰F today. This is true - a universal truth that cannot be denied.

Let me re-write this errant musing.

Realist theories of scientific progress take evidence generation to be an important goal of inquiry. This view is built into the realistic definition of knowledge as “our best guess at the time”: if science is a knowledge-seeking activity, then it is also an evidence-seeking activity.

Sorry. Science doesn’t do truth. Truth is absolute. That doesn’t play well in this relativistic universe.

Besides, truth is too restrictive. It robs us of our flexibility to change if we have evidence that our theories need to change.

You guys do truth, and when you find you need to change, you can’t. You’re stuck with the old sacred universal TRVTH that is not of this world and cannot ever change until there is a schism and then you guys go to war and it really is a mess. Stay away from the concept of absolute truth. It’s evil. It causes good people to make war.

We are more like the other side than we realize.

Onward Science Soldiers.

I am on board with using tools that actually give accurate results. The Scriptures though, contend that since Truth is totally free it is not a tool, or a process like the scientific method to be controlled.

No, Raph, science doesn’t control truth. Not even your god (dressed up as the truth) can control truth. Truth does not exist. I could be an ass, Raph, but, not now. I’ll just say that whatever your scriptures say … doesn’t hold a lot of weight, as in any, in this universe.

The reality, the evidence, controls everything. We follow the evidence like a bloodhound on a trail. Where it goes, we go. The evidence controls.

Where science itself does control (or should control except we’re human and mostly stupid) is when it’s time to do something. Anything. Which path to take? What options to choose? Science will show the way.

Does justice exist?

If justice is being extracted for the original sin of having been born, then no, there is no justice.

After that, well, the universe really doesn’t give a flyin’ flip so justice, a human construct, is up to us puny insignificant monkeys. Our disparate conflicting sets of relative moralities are all there is to affect whatever justice there is in this world.

Does justice exist? Ehh … sorta but not so much maybe.

To all these questions the answer from Truth is "yes." You matter, Paul. You are sacred and your life and the lives of your family and parents and children are holy and objectively divinely valued. Love is real, and love wins in the end.

That’s all so nice, but your bibles and your histories paint a much more violent, bloody and evil picture than this.

Besides, the actuality is I’m an organism surviving on a dust mote lost in the wayward western spiral arm of an insignificant galaxy where Truth, sacred, holy, divine, love, life and value are all puny human constructs the rest of existence ignores as irrelevant.

Suffering and injustice is a human creation, and yet it will come to an end.

Not according to your bible. Do I need to quote scripture at you? Your god states pretty plainly he made evil. And in his actions he uses his evil to cause suffering and injustice. He says so right in the book.

But, yes, humans are responsible for a lot of suffering and injustice in this world and, yes, that will cease when we go extinct. But that's only because your god does not exist.

So really, the task for us is to be become better discerners of which questions which sources care about, and ask those sources those questions.

There is only one source, isn’t there? Are there other sources?

What are they? How do they work?

The majority of people in the world experience the reality of their faiths on a daily basis, in vivid reality, and would tell you so.

Doesn’t matter. Reality isn’t a popularity contest, Raph. The universe doesn’t care how many angels can fit on the head of a burnt piece of Texas Toast. Doesn’t care one whit how many folk cross themselves or how many prayer wheels they spin. A hundred million genuflecting Buddhas has no meaning in or effect on this universe.

Sure, but you only trust it based on belief, however justified.

It is called objective reality because it is objectively determined to exist.

I answered your brain-in-a-vat already. It’s crap, Raph. Philosophers will chase a red car down the street trying to prove it’s actually blue. They are near worthless. There is nothing real or realistic in these matrix simulation circle-jerks and they provide no value to the discussion.

Such inanity may be fun to wildly speculate upon but these unfalsifiable speculations are neither scientific nor intellectually viable for any serious discussion.

Again, you just can’t see anything without invoking belief. Despite your most fervent insistence belief has no warrant here.

As I mentioned earlier, you have no way to discern whether this is a simulated reality or even if you are dreaming currently.

Doesn’t matter. You can’t show the universe did not just zap into existence fully formed last Thursday, either. None of this “what if” last Thursday, blue pill simulation crap means anything.

Until someone can show convincingly otherwise, the overwhelming evidence is we are humans on planet Earth in a universe with very specific operating parameters and an objective reality at its core.

I will proceed on that basis. If you want consideration of anything else … show me, in detail.

Perhaps a statement that more accurately represents my view is: "there are unproveable faith gaps at the foundation of all worldviews and epistemological frameworks."

And your evidence is?

Wait? Unprovable? That means there can be no evidence.

No evidence = no gap. That was easy.

Objective reality may exist, somewhere, but even with the scientific method you have no way of discerning what is is or if this is it.

What kind of seminary are you in? Don’t they let you up for air? You need oxygen. You’re hallucinating.

Science DOES discern objective reality. We have literally gazillions of models of reality that we have shown work. And by work I mean foresee the future in depth and clarity. Accurately predict future results. That is why science has succeeded so tremendously. With science we can not only discern reality we can manipulate that reality to the point of knowingly killing ourselves and most of life-kind on this planet with us. We good at this science stuff.

Are you trying to deny what science has accomplished? Are you saying it is all fake? Just some perception of the matrix? You took the blue pill didn’t you?

As long as we recognize your view of reality is clearly skewed to favor a specific epistemological framework that you believe, by faith, is able to tell you all the accurate information.

No. Not even close. I most certainly do not agree.

And frankly, at this point in the discussion, I’m disappointed I still have to explain this to you.

We don’t use a learning framework out of faith. That’s you people. We chose the framework that has an actual demonstrable track record of success. Science. That is an objective evaluation, a reality-based decision. It is not one based on a wishy-washy “make it feel good” belief system formatted to arrive at predetermined conclusions as do religions.

We choose this tool because there is an objective body of facts that details its success in capturing reality. Not faith or belief, Raph, actual fact, actual history.

Beside, you’ve never shown us anything else. When are you going to do that?

I can conceive of it, I just do not think you recognize that there is an unproveable faith gap beneath your entire framework (as there is within my own).

If you can’t show this faith gap because it’s unprovable how do you know it is there?

What kind of borscht are they feeding you in there?

In rebuttal to your thoughts on faith, faith actually has nothing to do with emotions or feelings. The Scriptures would content that faith is based (in part) on revelation; that is, evidence that reveals itself to you without your control.

Statements of faith all 3 of them. No such things in the reality of the universe. Not that anyone can show.

But then, you are supposed to be showing us these different sources of knowledge and how they work.

Please do so.

Surely evidence, no matter its source, would be considered by one claiming to be a scientist?

Oh, hell no!

The source has to be real, actual, demonstrably reliable - not some fairy tale. If science says grace over your source as legit then maybe we’ll consider its evidence.

But, no, no, no. There is too much bullshit masquerading as wannabe evidence. The woo-woo merchants and the priests are very good at that subterfuge.

No. Only actual proven methods of reality modeling are allowed to present evidence.

Science is the only one available. And that’s because you haven’t shown us yours. You being shy?

This is really the core of my argument. Some truths science does not bother concerning itself with. That's ok, because the field of Faith does have answer for the deeper more mystical, fundamentally human questions.

The problem is, Raph, you’re just lying to the congregation. There are no truths. Your methods-thru-faith show nothing. You cannot even belief-based-answer those questions for your choir. You haven’t any answers.

Your methods cannot give you any answers at all, can they? If so, how? Show me.

Well look who is basing reality on fleeting emotions now

What bs is this?

We’re not basing anything on emotion. Emotion is a fact. It is a part of reality. Unlike religion, reality is not based on feeble human emotion.

How did this even enter your mind?

Emotions are demonstrable products of human existence, I am in agreement there. "oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin in response to physical stimuli" may equate to "connection" but that's really as far as you could go. This is because science does not care about the questions "is love real?" or "does love matter?

Yah, science seems to have left the sophomore girls’ heartfelt yearnings to the philosophy club for debate. But, in actuality, the science of psychology does have answers for the above. There really isn’t anything we can’t science.

What about those who do not experience this chemical reaction, but still claim to love? Or those impaired by mental illness and chemical imbalances like depression or multiple-personalities. Is their love objectively false?

If the electrochemical balances within the brain are so out of whack then all bets on all things normal are off. If the doctor says the poor schmoe with such defects is experiencing love then there is a chemical component at work in the brain somewhere else the person would be dead.

We know how this stuff works, Raph. Don’t try to tell us otherwise.

you live in deep connection and love with people you are close to, and you care about them, without stopping to reduce your own emotions into chemistry.

As does everyone. You don’t dwell on your heart beat between sips of wine at dinner, either.

In this sense, your ideas and the reality of the way (I am again willing to bet) you live your life are in dissonance. In reality, connection matters, love matters, and you matter, and you live as if all are true.

No. No conflicts, No dissonance. Of course they are all true in that high school lower level sense of true. They are facts. Facts that are part of the human reality. Just because they are fleeting emotions does not negate their reality.

You seem to think that just because it’s a feeling, a fleeting emotion, it has no reality. It doesn’t happen? You don’t think science can see the fact of the emotion and its factual effects?

Quite the opposite. I live, laugh, love. But, when the questions come up involving the deeper layers of human inquiry I can answer them honestly without resorting to smoke, mirrors, devils and demons.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2734 by Raphael, posted 04-01-2021 11:10 PM Raphael has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 2741 by Raphael, posted 04-09-2021 12:42 AM AZPaul3 has replied

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2743 of 2806 (885380)
04-09-2021 6:28 PM
Reply to: Message 2741 by Raphael
04-09-2021 12:42 AM

Re: You The Man
And what evidence do you have for this? The bible? Sounds like a statement of faith to me.

Well, yeah. But I've already admitted it is a faith statement, lol.

Just checking. Thank you.

How can I, though, when you will reject any evidence that does not fit your favored epistemological framework?

You haven’t tried yet, unless I missed something.

What I would like is for one of those evidences to be presented however you deem appropriate. However much you think I will comprehend.

Also, again, sometimes we do not get the right answers because we're asking the wrong questions.

Well, that’s a specialty of science, cutting the wheat from the chaff, making sure the questions are correct, that kind of thing.

Things of the Spirit are Spiritually discerned. I can't show you anything. There is no process or formula or methodology I can control. But if you are open to revelation-evidence (subjective, of course) and willing to seek with an open mind, YHWH, through the Ancient Prophet Jeremiah, says, …

No, thank you. This isn’t about me. It’s about you.

You are the believer. Why? What made you believe? What knowledge came to you and how did it enter your life?

You are in seminary. Think of me as your personal demon tasked with testing your faith.

No don’t think that. I get enough demon accusations already.

I don't think you're being an ass. Though I'm more of a beer guy, myself

Horse piss? You uncultured heathen. Cabernet.

And when I get that way let me know. Sometimes being an ass is so natural even I don't know.

I think you have probably interacted with religious people selling something completely contradictory to what the Scriptures are even about. The kind of Christianity or religion that spouts ideas about a god existing who hates humans but likes putting kids faces on burnt toast is something I'd also reject as bullshit, frankly. Lol.

Thank you, Raphael. That was gracious. But the religious people I have interacted with are history, my own studies, more history and reading, reading and more reading, lots of it contemporary.

Ok, I lied. My researches have been cut short lately by intellectual laziness and what is left is centered elsewhere. There is this muon thing going on in particle physics that is just fascinating and is the kind of thing that is a focus for me. That stuff and SpaceX. Gotta love those guys.

But, after decades of this wonderful discussion and the prep to do it right, I believe (and that is a subjective self-appraisal) I understand the genesis, formation, evolutionary and historical motivations and bloody history of religion in general and more specifics on a few present human religions.

It is interesting to me that this is how you view faith.

Well, I do come by it honestly, as you do your view of the same subject. Except mine came from examining the real world. Yours, however, appears to be fantasy and I would like to understand how. An intellectual seminarian with a sense of humor seems like a good person to ask.

My faith doesn't work in such a way. Rather than explaining "everything," we find the Scriptures explains someone, namely, YHWH. A God, yes, but a person, with a character and personality and emotions and agency and hopes and goals.

How do you know this?

Such is the same with the Scriptures. Different cults and fringe groups may believe something, but that does in no way make their warped beliefs representative of the community at large, nor are those fringe beliefs representative of the source material.

History of the church, remember. You’re all cults.

I believe in aliens for sure! Their eye shape is probably unknowable though lol. or maybe this is a reference to something Im not aware of?

Do you know how many people claim they know? It’s scary. Just like most people don’t realize that if they wanted, the entire fellowship could have driven those huge monster eagles to Mordor and dropped the ring over the side in no time. But that would have cut the story to just a few scenes and taken away all that beautiful music Enya scored. That was amazing.

I do not know that I am even arguing an alternative epistemological process.

Raph, of course you are. Such is exactly what you say answers your deep spiritual questions.

But a table saw cannot be used with emotions, or logic, or love. Meaning, your tool, (that I agree works for measuring reality), simply cannot measure what you want it to measure. It can't.

You’re right, science cannot measure something that does not exist. But you claim to have a different ruler.

I’d like to see it in action. Or is that so far down the rabbit hole as to not be possible?

Rather, you, yourself, are a person of faith - a believer. LOL. You believe, by faith, that if a God existed your tools would be sufficient to account for him.

You see faith where I see a high confidence level in success. Having that confidence level in my vaccines informs me I can get out to my favorite restaurants in a few days. It also informs me that if your god exists and interacts in anyway with the operations of this universe we’ll nab his ass eventually.

I have enjoyed this debate, and am down to continue, however the reason I have made no truth claims, nor have I provided an alternative epistemology is because the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate how you are able to know an unknowable and untestable thing.

I can’t. Not possible.

But my question is how YOU know such unknowable and untestable things as you claim.

And yet you have claimed you know God does not exist. That you can prove it.

There once was a very strange and lovely lady on this forum and I do recall telling her the universe operates in such a manner as to preclude her, rather stupid, version of a god. And I would not put it past me to have said something similar to that somewhere else on this forum. But, I know better than to use the word *prove* in that context. At least I don’t think I would. Age and memory being what they are I’m still a bit surprised I’m making any sense at all.

I think the issue I hear in talking with you this far is you have a very black and white view of the world. You buy into the fallacy that "x things/people group/method is good" while "x other thing/group/method is bad." But life is a lot more nuanced.

When it comes to reality vs fantasy, black and white is an adequate divide. Like death for blasphemy is way wrong is another good black and white issue. There are loads of others. But most areas of the human condition require a deeper understanding of the facts of the issue. It may not be clear at all which way the science will lean until it is studied in detail.

I'm sorry you feel that way man. This explains a lot. You view faith as worthless. I don't really have anything to offer to change your mind.

Neither one of us is going to drastically change what the other thinks. What I would like is to understand the religious thought process better. How you found/find this evidence you say exists of YHWH. What sources informed you. What processes you used to verify the efficacy of the evidence. That kinda thing.

At this point in my life and higher education work I'm not really insecure about my faith, I know where the gaps are, and I know where the evidence is, and im comfortable with both. Because of this I experience a pretty healthy level of openness to totally alternate ideas.

Excellent. Just what the anti-theist asked for. A believer.

I am the same.

You say you believe based on the evidence. Like being cuddled by my mom is evidence of her love.

What evidence gives you god?

I don't dispute the history. But there are plenty of religious people, and people right now in the Christian tribe who are not only nothing like what you have described but oppose it probably more than you do.

That is a rather weak excuse for millennia of abuse by the religious power elite. Religious history is a violent scar on humanity that will never heal.

I mean unless you insult my mom …

I would never insult your mom. I don’t know her but I’m getting to know the child she raised and I think she did good. I like your mom.

Science helped us develop nuclear weapons. But science does not ask the question, "should these be used?" "How should these be used? "Why or why not?" These are ethical questions. And beneath the ethics are moral assumptions. Is human life inherently valuable? Why? Who decided?

Au contraire, it was indeed the scientific community that first raised the ethical issues. They knew better than anyone the power being unleashed and the dangers of long term harm to humanity. The religious politicians ignored them. Unfortunately, it was the politicians that had the ultimate say and, at that point in history there was such an evangelical hatred of Japanese that no one else cared if half a million of them fried.

Science does do ethical questions. We provide the actual facts that impact on the questions. Is it humane, harmful? What happens if we do? What happens if we don’t? But, people have to be ready to listen.

Sounds to me like you have rejected a specific hermeneutical framework (that I also oppose) and equated it with my perspective. The more I read from you the more I hear this in your words.

The only hermeneutics I know are what the words mean and how others through time interpreted the texts. I know the facets, form and function of myth and I can usually tell the difference between what is said to be factual and what is said to be parable, allegory. What I reject in scripture is the presumption of knowledge that has no demonstrable source.

That is what I want to learn. How does this knowledge emanate from this non-existent source?

You say you have such knowledge. How?

I'm glad for you then, that you live in a world with people of faith who can boldly answer this question, "yes!" and pursue it in the real world. Who knows where we'd be with a society of "maybe justice exists" police officers.

Police do not dispense justice. That is not their job. There certainly is compassionate discretion to be exercised by them, at least in an ideal world, unless you're black in America, but justice is not their job. And remember it was the people of faith who boldly answered this question "yes!" when science said "no!" to the use of the bomb. But, that’s human. Morality is somewhat pliable.

Go for it, just know that I read those scriptures in the original language, and I don't think they are saying what you think they are saying.

I will not argue your translational scholarship. I haven’t that skill. But the bible that is in society today, meant to inform the people, not just the scholars, and has been so for centuries, is quite specific. You know the two verses involved. The claim is your god created everything including evil. Is the scripture wrong?

There is a rabbit hole to go down some day. But not today.

BTW, I will not question any translation you provide. I yield that field to you. What I will most probably do, though, is question how you think such scripture informs your view.

I realize now perhaps this language is confusing. My bad there. What I mean is that beneath the scientific method is the belief that the method has all the tools to measure reality.

Where did that belief come from? Not from anyone who understands science. We know we don’t have it all. But what we do have is very instructive and useful in determining fact from fantasy and can be applied to almost any situation though right now I am hard pressed to find any situation where science could not be utilized.

Arrogant to be sure, but justifiably so. No one has yet found a magisteria where science could not enter.

You claimed you "Know God does not exist." I rebut this claim, and dub it a faith statement because you have no way to test or demonstrate that is is true.

Quite true. As in factual. That is indeed my own statement of faith.

Actually, my view is a logical supposition pending further evidence, but since you will find faith regardless I’ll go with it.

Logic prevents me from proving a negative. But I don’t have to. In all the known facts of every human knowledge base there is no viable evidence for such a critter. Until there is viable evidence I am safe, snug and warm in my science-based faith … eh … in my logical supposition pending further evidence.

The scientific method has within its foundation a faith assumption that it has all the tools required to test what is real. Its track record is good, however no objective source has verified this (none exists), therefore it is not objectively true.

See above on the “all the tools” thing. It is false.

And science’s track record is exceptional not just good. Point of pride.

As far as an objective source of verification is concerned you should have already recognized it in operation. It is the predictive power. When you can accurately manipulate and predict a future reality that is a pretty powerful verification that we have a clear understanding of that portion of reality.

In conclusion, the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate how you have come to such a conclusion, which is something you have not done.

I hope things are clearer now.

Demonstrate how you know beyond the shadow of a doubt that God does not exist. Demonstrate how science has killed God. I'm ready.

Who said anything about shadow of a doubt? Where did that come from?

My supposition is that god does not exist because there is no evidence of any kind that would indicate otherwise. As with all good science this is a tentative position pending future data. But it is just like with Her Majesty the Invisible Pink Unicorn or His Noodlyness the Flying Spaghetti Monster (Pesto Be Unto Him). You don’t believe either of those exist do you. And there are good justifiable reasons why. I apply that same justifiable reasoning to your god.

Demonstrate how science has killed God.

You’ll have to ask the New York Times. They said god was dead. Apparently, as I recall, it was a protestant thing that got him. Science had nothing to do with it, yet.

Raphael, I am out to learn what moves a mind to the fantasy of religion. The more I hear from you the more I am convinced you are the kind of person I can ask. I hope this continues. Thank you.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2741 by Raphael, posted 04-09-2021 12:42 AM Raphael has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 2746 by Raphael, posted 04-21-2021 7:11 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2747 of 2806 (885666)
04-22-2021 2:12 AM
Reply to: Message 2746 by Raphael
04-21-2021 7:11 PM

I have ice cream for you.
To the ancients, you didn't have a soul, you are a soul.

Now this is a more acceptable view than the usual modern version. All in line with what we know.

The human is a marvelous organism with brain operations unique from most other species. In the philosophy of mind I could not accept Descartes’ mind–body dualism and I reject, for the same reasons, the similar claim of a soul as a separate “substance” operating. To define “soul” as the more holistic and realistic treatment of body plus cognitive self, the whole self, is both parsimonious and quite elegant.

I hereby shamelessly steal this concept and adopt it as the sole definition of soul. Thank you, Oh Ancient Ones.

And we are beings of the spiritual, often spiritualizing non-religious things without even realizing we are doing so.

Spiritual in what sense?

Feeling in awe of the universe is spiritual. Seeing the Milky Way ablaze on a cold clear moonless night casting shadows in starlight is spiritual (this one does me no end of awe).

But, I’ll bet you have some other spiritual in mind. I would bet a small bowl, a minor teensy little bowl, of Häagen-Dazs chocolate ice cream. Sorry. That’s all the goodies my diet allows me these days.

We intuitively make meaning out of life, because we intuitively sense there must be a meaning, even if we have no idea what it is.

Then it is past time for us to wake up and realize that for us, as an organism evolved on this planet, there is no meaning, no purpose to life beyond that of a gnat trying to survive and procreate. If one insists there is purpose to life then this is it.

Any additional purpose or meaning advanced is emotionally derived from self, not from life, and is ephemeral. Which is fine as it helps us get by in this violent uncaring unconcerned universe. Fill your life with self-generated purpose. This universe sure isn't going to give you any.

So you don't believe like I do, ok, that doesn't change my responsibility to care for, listen to, and value you and your experience.

A good practicing Christian. Nice. Human. Or the way we should be ideally.

I submit to you that all, even atheists, have the same responsibility. Like original sin, all humans are charged with this responsibility just by virtue of being born. And this charge is placed upon us, ourselves, by us, ourselves.

A problem I see is that most of humanity can be insensitive to *others*, the out groups. All humanity cares greatly for family, community and brethren. Out groups, not so much.

Religion seems centered on the *us* group. Sharing our special knowledge and scripture that only we can know among us. Keeping the holy sites sacred and reserved for us. Special privileges reserved for us (some more than others). And only us get to be saved. Salvation is exclusive to us, only the believers of our specific creed.

A stronger case for human care, concern and help is that of humanism. Doesn’t matter what group you’re in, us, other or sideways. Unfortunately, that is also a human construct, like religion, and humans are just not ideal practitioners of even this secular creed. But, when it is practiced well such is all inclusive. There is no out group.

If you want to have an actual authentic conversation though, as I said before, I'd be interested in that!

That is the goal.

I believe in, yes (the mind) but have also known and seen the risen Christ. I have my evidences for it.

I would like to hear the form of this evidence. What does that entail? How did you verify this evidence was really giving you truth?

As far as timing goes, no apologies any more. Take as much as you need. This discussion, no matter how pleasant we may find it, is not worth screwing up your studies.

I think this is the second time you apologized for not responding in some nebulous un-imposed time frame. You do that again and I'm going to have to get upset. Never again apologize to me for living your life as you need.

Besides, I should be around a few more years anyway, maybe longer I hope, so we have the time.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2746 by Raphael, posted 04-21-2021 7:11 PM Raphael has taken no action

Replies to this message:
 Message 2748 by Phat, posted 04-24-2021 12:11 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2750 of 2806 (885723)
04-24-2021 2:54 PM
Reply to: Message 2748 by Phat
04-24-2021 12:11 PM

Re: I have ice cream for you.
All inclusiveness is a liberals wet dream.

Not that God doesn't support it. But there are conditions.

Then fuck him and his conditions. Phat, your version of a god is such an evil ass.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2748 by Phat, posted 04-24-2021 12:11 PM Phat has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 2751 by Phat, posted 04-24-2021 3:08 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2753 of 2806 (885727)
04-24-2021 3:36 PM
Reply to: Message 2751 by Phat
04-24-2021 3:08 PM

Re: I have ice cream for you.
What is it in yours?

Humanism. What is it with religion and exclusivity? Why try to exclude some from their humanity?

If the universe were only humans plus a myriad of other strange life forms, how would it be any safer than being in communion?

Well, Phat, I find it obvious in my world that real is safer than fantasy.

Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2751 by Phat, posted 04-24-2021 3:08 PM Phat has seen this message

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2763 of 2806 (894255)
05-08-2022 11:02 AM
Reply to: Message 2762 by urickad
05-08-2022 10:53 AM

Why should we do that when there is nothing there?

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2762 by urickad, posted 05-08-2022 10:53 AM urickad has taken no action

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2773 of 2806 (894640)
05-24-2022 6:19 PM
Reply to: Message 2772 by Phat
05-24-2022 3:25 PM

Re: How So?
What edge do you have?
Ooo! Ooo! Me! Me! I know!
He has sanity.
Do I get a cookie?

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2772 by Phat, posted 05-24-2022 3:25 PM Phat has taken no action

Replies to this message:
 Message 2774 by Tanypteryx, posted 05-24-2022 6:32 PM AZPaul3 has taken no action

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2788 of 2806 (894689)
05-26-2022 6:38 PM
Reply to: Message 2785 by EWolf
05-26-2022 4:46 PM

What do we do about the fact that we were told that God exist?
I would guess you would do the same as when you were told that Stile's Santa exists.
If we find a sand castle on a beach we know its builder exists.
Same as with a new car in the dealer's showroom.
Where did our worth, dignity, and our right originate?
Your reactions to society and society's reactions to you.

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2785 by EWolf, posted 05-26-2022 4:46 PM EWolf has taken no action

Posts: 6648
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 2793 of 2806 (894701)
05-27-2022 1:03 AM
Reply to: Message 2790 by Dredge
05-26-2022 9:45 PM

Dredge, you really don't want to tell anyone of these "experiences" of yours. They really are a result of coincidence and to claim supernatural origins is, indeed, a result of mental defect. Especially the "full on vision" episode which involves delusional hallucination and requires the intervention of a psychiatrist.
To be clear, it is not only the delusional hallucination episodes that are the great concern here but that you hear voices and see visions that tell you to do things and you do them. That is the story of every murderous religious psychopath in history.
If you continue to insist they are real then you could lose your job. No one wants a demented religious wacko on staff.

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2790 by Dredge, posted 05-26-2022 9:45 PM Dredge has taken no action

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