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Author Topic:   What Is The Positive Evidence For Atheism?
NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9006
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 256 of 301 (437239)
11-29-2007 11:32 AM
Reply to: Message 254 by FliesOnly
11-29-2007 7:03 AM


Eureka
Will this at least be in my expected lifetime (I'm in my mid 40s)? Because, I have to admit...I am as excited to see this evidence as is humanly possible.
It will never happen. It doesn't exist and will not be produced in any form.
If it did a short synopsis could be produced. If nothing else this would assure CFO priority on this in case someone else is thinking along the same lines.
For sure, you'd better not hold your breath.

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Replies to this message:
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reiverix
Member (Idle past 5897 days)
Posts: 80
From: Central Ohio
Joined: 10-18-2007


Message 257 of 301 (437240)
11-29-2007 11:39 AM
Reply to: Message 253 by Cold Foreign Object
11-28-2007 11:52 PM


Re: A Smidgen Off Topic - But Curious
I am in possession of original scientific evidence that will refute evolution.
Why not just share it with us? If it really is genuine then you have nothing to worry about. We will all know who wrote it.

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bluegenes
Member (Idle past 2555 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 258 of 301 (437241)
11-29-2007 11:41 AM
Reply to: Message 256 by NosyNed
11-29-2007 11:32 AM


Copyright
Ned writes:
For sure, you'd better not hold your breath.
As if anyone was.
Actually, Ray could post the basis of his idea on this site, and the site records plus all of us as witnesses would easily protect his rights.
I wonder where he's been doing his research?
I mean, which parts of the Book of Genesis haven't others been over with a fine tooth comb?

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Lithodid-Man
Member (Idle past 3009 days)
Posts: 504
From: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Joined: 03-22-2004


Message 259 of 301 (437255)
11-29-2007 12:26 PM
Reply to: Message 250 by Cold Foreign Object
11-28-2007 11:30 PM


Wrong! Perhaps we need to revisit 101...
CFO writes:
Evolution is based on materialism, which in essence says causation is perpetually material and never Divine. This is 101 stuff.
In week one of my Philosophy of Science course I do an entire lecture on the difference between methodological materialism and philosophical materialism and how they are, often deliberately, confused by creationists. So here is a review of '101':
Methodological materialism is one of the most critical aspects of the scientific method. It is, simplistically, that when investigating a process or causation you begin with the assumption that those causes can be understood via natural laws or processes.
Philosophical materialism is a belief that only the natural exists, there can not be a supernatural.
These two are easily confused but are very, very different. The first is a method and can say absolutely nothing about the existence or nonexistence of the supernatural, only that it cannot be used as a causal explanation. The latter is a belief, based on faith alone. All scientists use methodological materialism when conducting science, some scientists are ALSO philosophical materialists just as some are strongly religious.
An example I like to use is to have students imagine a police detective who is a fundamentalist Christian. He is investigating a murder scene. His investigation NEEDS to begin with the assumption that the murder occurred, that the murder was conducted by another human being, and that the murderer left some physical clues. He CANNOT investigate the murder assuming a supernatural agent was responsible, an evil spirit, demon, or even Old Scratch himself was responsible. His methodological materialist approach in no way speaks of his belief in the existence of the supernatural. He still believes in God, he still believes in Satan. He may even believe (and probably does) that ultimately the murder was caused by supernatural influences. But his investigation is entirely physical.
This is the world of all real scientists, whether atheist, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, etc. A Christian who is also an evolutionary biologist will look at a phenomena, examine evidence, and search for naturalistic explanations. Even if they believe that ultimately the phenomena is the result of supernatural agencies.
One point that needs to be stressed is that with methodological materialism supernatural agencies cannot be considered as science. But this is a two-way street. The statement "There is a god" and "There is no god" are equally unscientific although legitimate scientists may hold either belief.
The method employed by creationists is to show that evolutionary science is based on materialism (methodological) then show that materialism (philosophical) is faith, then use this chimaera definition to imply evolution is merely faith. It is misleading at best. I taught my students that if they here the term 'materialism' to engage their spidey sense and try to find out which disparate concept is being used.

"I have seen so far because I have stood on the bloated corpses of my competitors" - Dr Burgess Bowder

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Cold Foreign Object 
Suspended Member (Idle past 3126 days)
Posts: 3417
Joined: 11-21-2003


Message 260 of 301 (437316)
11-29-2007 5:02 PM
Reply to: Message 254 by FliesOnly
11-29-2007 7:03 AM


Re: A Smidgen Off Topic - But Curious
Will this at least be in my expected lifetime (I'm in my mid 40s)? Because, I have to admit...I am as excited to see this evidence as is humanly possible.
I am also in my mid-40s and I am very glad to hear you are excited to see this evidence.
Other posters, here and elsewhere, have urged me to release a short abstract, which would ensure priority, and satisfy curiosity. The reason I cannot is because the evidence, disattached from the entire argument would diminish its shock value. Since this evidence was discovered ABOUT 18 months ago, which was ABOUT 18 months into the project, it needs the surrounding structure of my entire paper.
When I am done I will post the link to my work here at EvC Forum and one other discussion site simultaneously. These posts will include a short excerpt announcing my discovery and the claim I make in behalf of it. The surrounding text of my paper will evidence the claim to be a scientific fact.
But for now, what is the big deal? Evolution is already false. Nobody has refuted IC, the geological crust of the Earth shows no signs of macroevolution, the Cambrian explosion is real, and all molecular phylogeny studies show a discordancy equal to an interval of time from the present to the CE.
Ray

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Cold Foreign Object 
Suspended Member (Idle past 3126 days)
Posts: 3417
Joined: 11-21-2003


Message 261 of 301 (437318)
11-29-2007 5:09 PM
Reply to: Message 259 by Lithodid-Man
11-29-2007 12:26 PM


Re: Wrong! Perhaps we need to revisit 101...
I have read your post, but it is off topic.
Why don't you create a topic on the meaning of Materialism and I will address your points. I usually have about one hour every two days to devote to posting messages on the Internet.

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Cold Foreign Object 
Suspended Member (Idle past 3126 days)
Posts: 3417
Joined: 11-21-2003


Message 262 of 301 (437319)
11-29-2007 5:14 PM
Reply to: Message 259 by Lithodid-Man
11-29-2007 12:26 PM


Re: Wrong! Perhaps we need to revisit 101...
....Or we can take it to Great Debate, if not I can assure you that your post is based on illogical assertions that demand trust. When said trust is asked for by IDists, evolutionists ignore and cry "Creationism" anyway. Now apply to your materialism distinctions.
Ray

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Hyroglyphx
Inactive Member


Message 263 of 301 (437327)
11-29-2007 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 218 by GDR
11-27-2007 9:35 PM


Re: Who is misreading?
Science is agnostic. Period.
Yes, it certainly is. Or at the very least, it should be.
Dawkins says that "evolution leads to Atheism". You may call it willfull ignorance if you like but when Dawkins trys to make science atheistic he is no longer talking science and I have no problem rejecting his distortion of evolution for Theism.
While I would agree that one can be, such as yourself, a theistic evolutionist, Dawkins is at least right that the underlying implication concerning evolution is atheism.
Think about it. If there is no need for God to accomplish evolution, then why not take a step further to say that there is God?, Dawkins might argue.
Dawkins, though, is not unique in this aspect. Darwin himself in some of his letters expressed similar beliefs. But Dawkins is different in that he has an unmistakable agenda that is less than virtuous. Dawkins despises the notion of God.
As much as he complains about the dangers of faith infiltrating science he is, hypocritcally, one of its worst offenders, as his version of science is precariously intertwined with a deep philosophy of science.
Dawkins is very much a philosopher; more so than he is a scientist. His primary interest is in philosophy, despite what he says. We have quite a few of them here at EvC who would argue that their place is with science, when really their deepest interest is in bolstering a philosophy of science.

“This life’s dim windows of the soul, distorts the heavens from pole to pole, and goads you to believe a lie, when you see with and not through the eye.” -William Blake

This message is a reply to:
 Message 218 by GDR, posted 11-27-2007 9:35 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 264 by GDR, posted 11-29-2007 6:20 PM Hyroglyphx has replied

GDR
Member
Posts: 6202
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005


Message 264 of 301 (437337)
11-29-2007 6:20 PM
Reply to: Message 263 by Hyroglyphx
11-29-2007 5:37 PM


Re: Who is misreading?
NJ writes:
While I would agree that one can be, such as yourself, a theistic evolutionist, Dawkins is at least right that the underlying implication concerning evolution is atheism.
Have you read Francis Collin's book, "The Language of God"?
I disagree with the last part of your sentence completely. Evolution is just a widely supported theory of the history of physical life today. It does not have anything to say, in spite of what Dawkins and others would have us believe, about the underlying cause of the history itself. Even if they can show how the first cell came to be it still will not demonstrate why it occured. Evolution does not imply anything either philosophically or theologically.
NJ writes:
Think about it. If there is no need for God to accomplish evolution, then why not take a step further to say that there is God?, Dawkins might argue.
Dawkins, though, is not unique in this aspect. Darwin himself in some of his letters expressed similar beliefs. But Dawkins is different in that he has an unmistakable agenda that is less than virtuous. Dawkins despises the notion of God.
(I assume you meant "that there is no God".) Who says that there is no need for God to accomplish evolution? Dawkins? Do you really think that if science had found that humans were instantly created 6000 years ago that some of them like Dawkins wouldn't have come up with a naturalist answer to it?
NJ writes:
As much as he complains about the dangers of faith infiltrating science he is, hypocritcally, one of its worst offenders, as his version of science is precariously intertwined with a deep philosophy of science.
Dawkins is very much a philosopher; more so than he is a scientist. His primary interest is in philosophy, despite what he says. We have quite a few of them here at EvC who would argue that their place is with science, when really their deepest interest is in bolstering a philosophy of science.
I agree completely with this.
Edited by GDR, : No reason given.

Everybody is entitled to my opinion.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 263 by Hyroglyphx, posted 11-29-2007 5:37 PM Hyroglyphx has replied

Replies to this message:
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Chiroptera
Inactive Member


Message 265 of 301 (437344)
11-29-2007 6:56 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Cold Foreign Object
11-21-2007 10:11 PM


Why do I bother?
If evolution is not positive evidence for Atheism how rational is it to ignore the fact that all of you are evolutionists?
If evolution is not positive evidence for atheism, then it is very rational to ignore the fact that all of us (atheists?) are evolutionists.
I think you mean to ask if all atheists are evolutionists, then wouldn't it be rational to wonder whether evolution were positive evidence for atheism?
Well, actually, I know that isn't what you meant to say. For one thing, it's pretty coherent, and the connection isn't unreasonable -- maybe not true, but not unreasonable to investigate. Also, it presumes a question to be answered through reasoned dialogue, when you're pretty much stuck in your delusional black-and-white-all-questions-have-been-answered world.

Progress in human affairs has come mainly through the bold readiness of human beings not to confine themselves to seeking piecemeal improvements in the way things are done, but to present fundamental challenges in the name of reason to the current way of doing things and to the avowed or hidden assumptions on which it rests. -- E. H. Carr

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Lithodid-Man
Member (Idle past 3009 days)
Posts: 504
From: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Joined: 03-22-2004


Message 266 of 301 (437354)
11-29-2007 7:14 PM
Reply to: Message 262 by Cold Foreign Object
11-29-2007 5:14 PM


Re: Wrong! Perhaps we need to revisit 101...
Ray,
First of all my post was on topic, your OP is asking whether or not atheism has evidence or is based on faith. I stated that atheism is, like religion, a philosophical position and rooted in faith. However, what I object to is this:
Evolution = Materialism = Atheism
This statement is flawed because the middle assumes the following:
methodological materialism = philosophical materialism
When broken apart the statements are more or less true:
Evolution = (methodological) Materialism (would replace '=' with 'based on' or 'rooted in')
(philosophical) Materialism = Atheism (would replace '=' with 'includes')
I am not sure how or where this warrants being called 'an illogical assertion', it is pretty basic philosophy of science and really isn't argued by anyone. I spent some time trying to figure out where you would get that, and the only thing I can see is that I am using the term 'materialism' as a synonym of 'naturalism'. From what I can find the latter term is more often used but is interchangeable.

"I have seen so far because I have stood on the bloated corpses of my competitors" - Dr Burgess Bowder

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nator
Member (Idle past 2248 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 267 of 301 (437358)
11-29-2007 7:31 PM
Reply to: Message 229 by Cold Foreign Object
11-28-2007 10:19 PM


quote:
Then I will promptly point out that all Atheists are evolutionists
Except for the Raelians, right?

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bluegenes
Member (Idle past 2555 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 268 of 301 (437366)
11-29-2007 7:50 PM
Reply to: Message 266 by Lithodid-Man
11-29-2007 7:14 PM


Re: Wrong! Perhaps we need to revisit 101...
Lithodid-Man writes:
I stated that atheism is, like religion, a philosophical position and rooted in faith.
I think you said that philosophical materialism was a faith, not atheism. Atheists are people who lack faith in any Gods, but they are not necessarily philosophical materialists (some Buddhists and Animists, for example, plus atheists/spiritualists etc., plus people who think there might be other universes, not necessarily all material in the way we would understand the word).
However, you have now stated a faith that atheism is rooted in faith. I assure you, as an atheist, that it requires no faith to lack faith in anything for which there is no evidence, from Santa Claus to any Gods you care to mention. Faith in supernatural beings for whom there is no evidence is active, lack of it is just passive sanity.
ABE: The rest of your post is absolutely correct, as is the one above, and not even a matter of opinion, but of definitions. Many of us have made the same point on EvC (I use the word naturalism where you use materialism), and you put it very well.
Edited by bluegenes, : afterthought

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Hyroglyphx
Inactive Member


Message 269 of 301 (437369)
11-29-2007 7:52 PM
Reply to: Message 264 by GDR
11-29-2007 6:20 PM


Re: Who is misreading?
Have you read Francis Collin's book, "The Language of God"?
No. Pretty good?
I disagree with the last part of your sentence completely. Evolution is just a widely supported theory of the history of physical life today. It does not have anything to say, in spite of what Dawkins and others would have us believe, about the underlying cause of the history itself. Even if they can show how the first cell came to be it still will not demonstrate why it occured. Evolution does not imply anything either philosophically or theologically.
Perhaps it shouldn't in your mind, but it in fact does do this. According to a straw poll I read awhile back (and can't for the life of me find again) alleges that in the early 80's that 40% of evolutionists have claimed to be theistic evolutionists. By 2000 that number had dwindled down to 9%. Is it a coincidence? Is it an anomaly? I'm not so sure that it is.
At the heart of it, there are two different kinds of atheism-- theoretical and practical. Theoretical atheism claims there is no a God, and practical atheism, which, in actuality is far more agnostic, does not actually deny that God exists but rather that God does not do anything that would substantiate his existence.
In practical atheism, God is simply ruled out a priori. If God is omitted from the details of biological evolution, then there is no reason to assume God. Sure, you still have a First Cause problem, all of which I argue for, but we can in no wise say that Dawkins doesn't have a point. I'm much more interested in the fact that he is being so candid about the whole thing. Its refreshing being that there has been a systematic suppression of all things God in the philosophy of science.
Who says that there is no need for God to accomplish evolution? Dawkins?
No one can say it meaningfully because it would have to presuppose so much. But if nature isn't guided by God, they argue, and that there are naturalistic explanations for why nature is what it is, then where in their does God fit in? And why, if we were to go by the Biblical account, does God languish with the minor details of life if humans are supposed to be the central figure?
At some point you are going to have to split your allegiance one way or the other it seems to me.
Do you really think that if science had found that humans were instantly created 6000 years ago that some of them like Dawkins wouldn't have come up with a naturalist answer to it?
Sure, he has some naturalistic answer for anything-- albeit poor ones, especially for deep metaphysical questions.
Edited by Nemesis Juggernaut, : typo

“This life’s dim windows of the soul, distorts the heavens from pole to pole, and goads you to believe a lie, when you see with and not through the eye.” -William Blake

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 Message 264 by GDR, posted 11-29-2007 6:20 PM GDR has replied

Replies to this message:
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Lithodid-Man
Member (Idle past 3009 days)
Posts: 504
From: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Joined: 03-22-2004


Message 270 of 301 (437372)
11-29-2007 8:02 PM
Reply to: Message 268 by bluegenes
11-29-2007 7:50 PM


Re: Wrong! Perhaps we need to revisit 101...
You are right. What I did was attempt to oversimplify. I know that all atheists are not philosophical materialists, I should have been more precise in wording the reverse. Thanks for the catch!

"I have seen so far because I have stood on the bloated corpses of my competitors" - Dr Burgess Bowder

This message is a reply to:
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