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Author Topic:   Identifying false religions.
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


Message 391 of 479 (571028)
07-29-2010 5:47 PM
Reply to: Message 390 by crashfrog
07-29-2010 5:37 PM


Say we have a religion that believes in god.
I'm sorry, believes in what?
Of course What was I thinking?
Have a nice day.
ABE:
Although. that makes me wonder just what the fuck you were talking about when you said this:
quote:
That wouldn't be on topic in this thread and I've laid out the evidentiary case against God many times in the past.
Edited by Catholic Scientist, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 390 by crashfrog, posted 07-29-2010 5:37 PM crashfrog has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 392 by crashfrog, posted 07-29-2010 5:57 PM New Cat's Eye has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1551 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 392 of 479 (571030)
07-29-2010 5:57 PM
Reply to: Message 391 by New Cat's Eye
07-29-2010 5:47 PM


Of course What was I thinking?
"God" as an utterance doesn't communicate much meaning to me. I'm prepared to debate the existence of whatever you refer to when you say "God" but you need to tell me what that is, first.
It's like saying "let's debate the existence of vampires." Ok, but which vampires? Buffy-style, who crumble when staked or burned by the sun and cast no reflection? Blade-style, who transmit vampirism virally and are destroyed by silver? Twilight-style sparkly pheremone vampires? The naked space vampire chick from "Lifeforce"? One-legged hopping Chinese vampires? (For serious, Chinese vampires hop.) You'd have to be more specific.
I'm not trying to play games with you, I was asking you to unpack the word "God" for me.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 391 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-29-2010 5:47 PM New Cat's Eye has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 394 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-29-2010 6:35 PM crashfrog has replied

Rahvin
Member
Posts: 4046
Joined: 07-01-2005
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 393 of 479 (571031)
07-29-2010 6:04 PM
Reply to: Message 389 by New Cat's Eye
07-29-2010 4:23 PM


So, per the topic of this thread...
Say we have a religion that believes in god.
How would you identify it as false?
Or do you have links to the times in the past?
Super-simple method?
Assuming there is zero evidence on the matter of the existence or nonexistence of the asserted entity, it's more likely that the entity does not exist than that it does. It's a simple matter of probability - joint probability is multiplicative.
The probability that the Universe exists as we observe it is greater than the probability that the Universe exists as we observe it AND there exists this unevidenced deity.
It's the long way of saying "Occam's Razor." Hypotheses that include additional unnecessary terms are less likely to be accurate than those that include only those entities that are required.
Other reasons to disbelieve in any given entity depend on the specifics of that entity. If you claim the existence of something (god, machine, whatever) that is able to completely disregard or even break well-established laws of physics, for example, the likelihood of your hypothesis would be somewhere on the order of the uncertainty of the specific law(s) of physics your hypothesized entity would completely invalidate.
The initial unlikelihood of the existence of an asserted deity or other unevidenced entity must be overcome with observations that increase the likelihood that the entity exists beyond the level of the hypothesis that the Universe exists as we observe it without this new entity - in other words, evidence.
Let me give an example. Which of these hypotheses is more likely than the others, given that I have a friend named Susan?
A) I have a friend named Susan who has blonde hair.
B) I have a friend named Susan with blonde hair who is employed as a teacher.
In this problem, we actually have two assertions about Susan. The first is easy to evaluate - the likelihood that Susan has blonde hair is equal to the percentage of blondes in the general population. The second is also easy - the likelihood that Susan is a teacher is equal to the percentage of teachers in the general population.
The probability that BOTH are simultaneously true, however, is less likely than each individual assertion because joint probability is multiplicative. Let's say that 15% of people are blonde, and 5% of people are teachers. The probability that Susan is BOTH blonde AND a teacher is .15 * .05, or 0.75% - far less likely than either one individually.
We need evidence in the form of observations - the rational conclusion at this point is that it is MORE LIKELY that Susan is blonde than that she is blonde AND a school teacher. If we actually observe her with blonde hair, then the likelihood that she is blonde shoots to near certainty; if we observe her teaching a class, so too does the likelihood that she is also a schoolteacher.
Without actual observations that increase the likelihood of any previously unobserved entity (including gods) actually existing, their existence is less likely than that our Universe exists without them.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 389 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-29-2010 4:23 PM New Cat's Eye has not replied

New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 394 of 479 (571038)
07-29-2010 6:35 PM
Reply to: Message 392 by crashfrog
07-29-2010 5:57 PM


"God" as an utterance doesn't communicate much meaning to me. I'm prepared to debate the existence of whatever you refer to when you say "God" but you need to tell me what that is, first.
Or, you could define it in your argument.
Or, you can just use whatever you were when you said:
quote:
I've laid out the evidentiary case against God many times in the past.
It's like saying "let's debate the existence of vampires." Ok, but which vampires? Buffy-style, who crumble when staked or burned by the sun and cast no reflection? Blade-style, who transmit vampirism virally and are destroyed by silver? Twilight-style sparkly pheremone vampires? The naked space vampire chick from "Lifeforce"? One-legged hopping Chinese vampires? (For serious, Chinese vampires hop.) You'd have to be more specific.
If you said you had a case against vampires, and then I asked you for it, why wouldn't you just assume we're talking about whatever vampires you meant in the first place?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 392 by crashfrog, posted 07-29-2010 5:57 PM crashfrog has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 395 by crashfrog, posted 07-29-2010 6:45 PM New Cat's Eye has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1551 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


(1)
Message 395 of 479 (571039)
07-29-2010 6:45 PM
Reply to: Message 394 by New Cat's Eye
07-29-2010 6:35 PM


Or, you could define it in your argument.
Sure, but then I'm going to define the most testable, most contradictable form of God, and be accused of grappling with a stawman "God" that "moderate" religionists reject in favor of "more sophisticated theology."
Or, you can just use whatever you were when you said:
In those threads I believe I made cases against definitions of "God" provided by others. I think it's fairest if proponents of the "God" position are the ones who determine the characteristics of their object of belief, just like how it works better when evolutionists, not creationists, define evolution.
If you said you had a case against vampires, and then I asked you for it, why wouldn't you just assume we're talking about whatever vampires you meant in the first place?
I may have cases against all those vampires, which would require you to be more specific if I'm to present one of those cases. And I'd like to deny you the ability to respond to a case against Buffy-style vamps by saying "ah, but I was talking about Twilight-style vamps all along!" That's a common evasion technique by the religious, to claim that the atheist who has made a case against God has made a case against the wrong God.
I'm asking you to tell me what "God" means, so I can present the accurate case. I don't think that's too much to ask, considering you're the one who asked me to present a case.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 394 by New Cat's Eye, posted 07-29-2010 6:35 PM New Cat's Eye has not replied

Straggler
Member (Idle past 150 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 396 of 479 (571044)
07-29-2010 7:10 PM
Reply to: Message 383 by jar
07-29-2010 2:03 PM


Re: SOURCE vs Content
jar writes:
No, it is not "empirically unevidenced"
Huh? How on Earth is the definition of a deistic god I provided you with anything but empirically un-evidenced?
"Unknowable, outside our universe, outside of our perception/s, or is off doing other things" Message 225
jar writes:
and No not highly improbable
Except that by your very own self procliamed consistent criteria it is both rational to consider any empirically un-evidenced entity to be "highly improbable" AND irrational to deny this improbability.
Your view on deistic gods of the type defined seems to be yet another of your irrational personal beliefs. Which is fine. Just let's not pretend otherwise shall we?
jar writes:
I believe that it is also rational and reasonable to consider that many may see what is written as MORE than simply a statement of belief.
On what basis?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 383 by jar, posted 07-29-2010 2:03 PM jar has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 397 by jar, posted 07-29-2010 7:21 PM Straggler has replied

jar
Member
Posts: 34060
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.9


(1)
Message 397 of 479 (571047)
07-29-2010 7:21 PM
Reply to: Message 396 by Straggler
07-29-2010 7:10 PM


Re: SOURCE vs Content
Straggler writes:
Huh? How on Earth is the definition of a deistic god I provided you with anything but empirically un-evidenced?
Because as I explained in my posts I used MY definition of a Deist where I said I used the evidence of what was written about that God.
You don't like that?
Tough.
Straggler writes:
Except that by your very own self procliamed consistent criteria it is both rational to consider any empirically un-evidenced entity to be "highly improbable" AND irrational to deny this improbability.
Except, if you read my posts you will see I specified that I considered stories written about that God as evidence.
You don't like that?
Tough.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 396 by Straggler, posted 07-29-2010 7:10 PM Straggler has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 398 by Straggler, posted 07-29-2010 7:43 PM jar has replied
 Message 399 by Rahvin, posted 07-29-2010 7:56 PM jar has replied

Straggler
Member (Idle past 150 days)
Posts: 10333
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 398 of 479 (571050)
07-29-2010 7:43 PM
Reply to: Message 397 by jar
07-29-2010 7:21 PM


Re: SOURCE vs Content
jar writes:
Because as I explained in my posts I used MY definition of a Deist where I said I used the evidence of what was written about that God.
No. You originally replied to the definition I gave of a desitic god as supplied by RAZD in the context of you and I discussing what seemed to be the incompatibility of you claiming to agree with RAZD's position.
Straggler writes:
For example the following definition of a deistic god "Unknowable, outside our universe, outside of our perception/s, or is off doing other things" Message 225
In the case of this story pertaining to an entity which is wholly empirically imperceptible we can conclude that (blind random chance aside) it must be made-up. Yes? How can it be possibly be otherwise? Message 334
jar writes:
Sorry, if you are talking about the Deist concept of God then I would have to say that's more probable then many. Message 335
So why are you now avoiding stating your position on the necessarily empirically un-evidenced desitic god as defined in the original question?
I will ask again: Is the definition of a deistic god I provided you with anything but empirically un-evidenced?
Is such an entity therefore, by your own definitions, "highly improbable"?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 397 by jar, posted 07-29-2010 7:21 PM jar has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 400 by jar, posted 07-29-2010 8:04 PM Straggler has replied

Rahvin
Member
Posts: 4046
Joined: 07-01-2005
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 399 of 479 (571052)
07-29-2010 7:56 PM
Reply to: Message 397 by jar
07-29-2010 7:21 PM


Re: SOURCE vs Content
Except, if you read my posts you will see I specified that I considered stories written about that God as evidence.
You don't like that?
Tough.
Evidence is not subjective. Evidence is an observation that alters the probability that a hypothesis is true. An observation cannot positively affect the probability of a hypothesis for one person, and negatively affect or be neutral to the probability of that hypothesis for another person at the same time - one of them is wrong. Evidence is not a matter of equally-valid opinion. Evidence is a matter of fact.
A written story that makes assertions does not significantly affect the probability that those assertions are true. Not ever. Your use of the word "tough" does not lend strength to your argument - rather, it betrays the fact that you simply intend to stubbornly hold to an objectively false position.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 397 by jar, posted 07-29-2010 7:21 PM jar has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 401 by jar, posted 07-29-2010 8:19 PM Rahvin has not replied

jar
Member
Posts: 34060
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.9


Message 400 of 479 (571053)
07-29-2010 8:04 PM
Reply to: Message 398 by Straggler
07-29-2010 7:43 PM


Re: SOURCE vs Content
Because we moved on in the discussion, I am not RAZD and I defined what Deist God I was talking about.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 398 by Straggler, posted 07-29-2010 7:43 PM Straggler has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 408 by Straggler, posted 07-30-2010 8:16 AM jar has replied

jar
Member
Posts: 34060
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.9


(1)
Message 401 of 479 (571054)
07-29-2010 8:19 PM
Reply to: Message 399 by Rahvin
07-29-2010 7:56 PM


Re: SOURCE vs Content
Rahvin writes:
Evidence is not subjective. Evidence is an observation that alters the probability that a hypothesis is true. An observation cannot positively affect the probability of a hypothesis for one person, and negatively affect or be neutral to the probability of that hypothesis for another person at the same time - one of them is wrong. Evidence is not a matter of equally-valid opinion. Evidence is a matter of fact.
A written story that makes assertions does not significantly affect the probability that those assertions are true. Not ever. Your use of the word "tough" does not lend strength to your argument - rather, it betrays the fact that you simply intend to stubbornly hold to an objectively false position.
Except we are not talking about whether the entity really exists but rather whether a belief in an entity can be held rationally.
And of course, evidence can be subjective. Some people give greater weight to certain pieces of evidence than others do.
I have never tried to assert that any GOD, God or god exists.
What I have said is that the more details that are given about a particular concept, the more data is available to make a decision.
I happen to believe in a GOD where the most I can say about the critter is that it is the creator of all that is, seen and unseen. I willingly admit that my belief is unreasonable, irrational, illogical.
BUT...it is what I believe.
The issue of belief in a Deist God came up when I said that I personally found it more likely that if a God existed it would be similar to the Deist concept or the God described in Genesis 1 then the God described in Genesis 2&3. I said that I find the Deist God as described in all I have read about the concept to be more convincing to me than the description of the God in Genesis 2&3.
Again, no where am I asserting that any such critter in fact exists. This is only a discussion about beliefs.
I have said that while my beliefs about GOD are unreasonable, irrational and illogical, beliefs about God(s) or god(s) can be reasoned, rational and logical. Those beliefs (either in favor of the existence or non-existence or the likelihood or unlikelihood of the particular GOD(s) or god(s) ) would be based on the available evidence, stories, accounts, personal experiences.
The person making the belief judgment may well be wrong, but the process they use can be reasonable, logical, rational.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 399 by Rahvin, posted 07-29-2010 7:56 PM Rahvin has not replied

RAZD
Member (Idle past 1490 days)
Posts: 20714
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004


Message 402 of 479 (571063)
07-29-2010 10:41 PM
Reply to: Message 371 by crashfrog
07-29-2010 2:26 AM


Re: back to the begining?
Hi crashfrog,
I would correct you and say that my position is that gods don't exist, and your position is that one does. Opinions are subjective, but if God exists he must do so objectively. If God is an actually real thing he's objectively, not subjectively real.
It doesn't matter to me what you call it, it is still just your opinion, based on your world view, life experiences and biases.
quote:
Position Definition & Meaning | Dictionary.com
position --n
  1. the place, situation, or location of a person or thing: he took up a position to the rear
  2. the appropriate or customary location: the telescope is in position for use
  3. the arrangement or disposition of the body or a part of the body: the corpse was found in a sitting position
  4. the manner in which a person or thing is placed; arrangement
  5. military an area or point occupied for tactical reasons
  6. mental attitude; point of view; stand: what's your position on this issue?
  7. social status or standing, esp high social standing
  8. a post of employment; job
  9. the act of positing a fact or viewpoint
  10. something posited, such as an idea, proposition, etc
  11. sport the part of a field or playing area where a player is placed or where he generally operates
  12. music
    1. See also root position the vertical spacing or layout of the written notes in a chord. Chords arranged with the three upper voices close together are in close position . Chords whose notes are evenly or widely distributed are in open position
    2. one of the points on the fingerboard of a stringed instrument, determining where a string is to be stopped
  13. in classical prosody
    1. the situation in which a short vowel may be regarded as long, that is, when it occurs before two or more consonants
    2. make position (of a consonant, either on its own or in combination with other consonants, such as x in Latin) to cause a short vowel to become metrically long when placed after it
  14. finance the market commitment of a dealer in securities, currencies, or commodities: a long position ; a short position
  15. (foll by an infinitive) in a position able (to): I'm not in a position to reveal these figures

position (6): mental attitude; point of view; stand: what's your position on this issue?
== opinion.
position (9): the act of positing a fact or viewpoint
quote:
Posit Definition & Meaning | Dictionary.com
posit --vb
1. to assume or put forward as fact or the factual basis for an argument; postulate
2. to put in position
posit --n
3. a fact, idea, etc, that is posited; assumption
To posit is to assume the statement is true.
== opinion.
For instance, the existence of evil contradicts the existence of a benevolent, omnipotent God.
So ... if god/s exist, then they would not meet your criteria for "benevolent, omnipotent" gods. You're expectations could be what is false here, rather than the existence of gods, so this is not evidence that god/s do not exist, just that your expectations are not met.
Now I personally do not expect god/s to be benevolent or malevolent or concerned in any way with the human life experiences or conceptions of the welfare of human life on earth, so I don't have that problem.
Your "evidence" fails to address the issue of whether god/s exist or not.
This would seem to be an unassailable basis from which to assert any old nonsense: "the sky is blue." "That's your opinion; mine is that it's green."
So you're saying that my position is that the sky is blue, and your position is that the sky is green, and that this terminology magically changes these positions from being opinions.
Amusingly, this demonstrates graphically that opinion (or position) is not capable of altering reality. What we can do is compare recorded wavelengths of light from the sky to the spectrum of light with our subjective nomenclature for the various ranges of light, and demonstrate that the light from the sky falls within the range labeled "blue" (and sometimes shades of red to purple, occasionally yellow or green, but predominantly blue). The recorded wavelengths are objective empirical evidence, which can definitely show that the sky was blue when they were recorded.
Opinion cannot change that recording or the spectrum labels.
If you can't draw a distinction between opinions and positions, if everything is an opinion, then we're in a situation where none of your positions are falsifiable - ...
Curiously, I have just shown that opinion OR position can be falsified with actual objective empirical evidence.
... because you can simply be of the opinion that they haven't been falsified, regardless of what evidence you're shown.
Anyone of the belief\opinion\position that the earth and universe are young would have to be in denial of the massive objective empirical evidence of extreme old age of the earth and universe.
quote:
Delusion Definition & Meaning | Dictionary.com
delusion -noun
  1. a. The act or process of deluding.
    b. The state of being deluded.
  2. A false belief or opinion: labored under the delusion that success was at hand.
  3. Psychiatry A false belief strongly held in spite of invalidating evidence, especially as a symptom of mental illness: delusions of persecution.
(American Heritage Dictionary 2009)
They can still hold that opinion, but it would be delusional to do so, because the concept has been falsified.
Opinions that are logically valid, consistent with one's worldview, life experiences and biases, and that are not contradicted by objective empirical evidence, however, no matter what they involve, are not irrational per se, but without supporting objective empirical evidence they remain just opinions.
They may seem strange to you - based on your world view, life experiences and biases - however without evidence contradicting those beliefs\opinions\positions all you have is your opinion versus theirs.
I prefer to use the term opinion because it clearly distinguishes them from statements of fact.
"Evolution is substantiated by the evidence."
The objective empirical evidence all around us shows that evolution - the change in frequency and character of hereditary traits in breeding populations from generation to generation - occurs in all species of life.
That is a statement of fact, not of opinion.
Enjoy.
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 371 by crashfrog, posted 07-29-2010 2:26 AM crashfrog has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 405 by crashfrog, posted 07-29-2010 11:51 PM RAZD has replied

RAZD
Member (Idle past 1490 days)
Posts: 20714
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004


Message 403 of 479 (571066)
07-29-2010 11:26 PM
Reply to: Message 372 by Phage0070
07-29-2010 3:07 AM


Re: It is really quite simple.
I'll be brief Phage0070, to try to focus on the critical areas.
No, it does not. Number 1 is belief in the existence of Bigfoot, to the point that they consider it a real being. Number 2 is uncertainty, or reservation of judgment. With #2, someone would not be comfortable considering Bigfoot to be a real being. Other additional options wouldn't include the belief that Bigfoot exists, otherwise they would be option #1.
You keep restricting the #2 position based on your personal biases.
Your belief that bigfoot does not exist is not absolute: you also have a belief that it is possible (but unlikely) that bigfoot exists.
Someone - particularly your person with the personal experience - can believe that bigfoot does exist, and that belief can also not be absolute: they could also have a belief that it is possible (but unlikely) that bigfoot does not exist.
Someone else - me as an example - can believe that it is possible that bigfoot does exist, AND believe that it is possible that bigfoot does not exist.
No, it cannot. Someone cannot simultaneously believe that something both exists and does not exist at the same time, at least not reasonably. They may be uncertain, or alternating between two answers, but they cannot hold the two at the same time. They are very clearly mutually exclusive positions.
But you see, your problem is not with the actual positions, but with your bias to see these in absolute terms. Let me state it again:
Message 368
The real problem with your black and white approach, however, is that belief is a spectrum and disbelief is a spectrum and there is a lot of overlapping possibilities. There is no line between belief and disbelief, but a spectrum of positions.
I believe that it is possible that bigfoot exists, and I also believe it is possible that bigfoot does not exist, but neither of these beliefs are strong enough to form a formal opinion at this time, due to a lack of sufficient evidence.
Beliefs can be strong or they can be weak.
You have a strong belief that bigfoot does not exist, along with a weak belief that it is possible that bigfoot does exist.
Our personal experience person has a strong belief that bigfoot does exist, along with a weak belief that it is possible that bigfoot does not exist.
I have a weak belief that bigfoot does exist and a weak belief that bigfoot does not exist. This is more rational than the previous two positions when there is insufficient information to make a formal conclusion.
Let me put it in plain English: If someone claims Bigfoot exists, but has no evidence to back it up, I will consider the claim unreliable. The claimant's lack of evidence to back up their claim does not mean that their claim is false, and I didn't conclude that it was. I only decided that the claim shouldn't be considered reliably true. I would still be open to the possibility that Bigfoot exists, but I simply wouldn't believe that particular claim.
Are you equally skeptical if someone claims Bigfoot does not exist, but has no evidence to back it up -- do you consider that claim unreliable as well?
Enjoy.
Edited by RAZD, : now ready

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 372 by Phage0070, posted 07-29-2010 3:07 AM Phage0070 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 407 by Phage0070, posted 07-30-2010 1:26 AM RAZD has replied

RAZD
Member (Idle past 1490 days)
Posts: 20714
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004


Message 404 of 479 (571068)
07-29-2010 11:51 PM
Reply to: Message 373 by DevilsAdvocate
07-29-2010 6:29 AM


Re: The rationality of the burden of proof
Hi again DevilsAdvocate.
Again I disagree.
Which you are free to do.
Science does not place equal footing for the burden of proof on both the claim of knowledge that "something exists or is likely to exist" and "something does not exist or is not likely to exist". Please show me where in science that it does so.
But the issue here is not claiming that "something does not exist" it is with claiming to know the likelihood, to have sufficient evidence to make an informed decision.
Don't you think that someone making a claim that he was convinced, absolutely certain, that god/s do not exist - that he would be making an extraordinary claim?
What would be the rational basis for such a claim, if not objective empirical evidence?
In fact nothing can be 100% disproven as science always speaks in terms of probability, including the probability of existance.
And when science talks about the probability of X being true (or false) it is an informed conclusion, based on a review of objective empirical evidence and the determination that enough is known to calculate the probabilities and the levels of confidence in them.
Don't you think that someone making a claim that he was convinced that it is highly likely that god/s do not exist - that he would be making an extraordinary claim?
What would be the rational basis for such a claim, if not objective empirical evidence?
Here is the catch. Science begins at the foundation of the non-existance of phenomena. It is up to the scientist or group of scientists to show evidence for the validity that certain physical phenomena to exist. Not the other way around. We don't automatically assume something exists in science, we must show evidence of its existance whether it be biological cells, viruses, atoms, electrons, quarks, 1-dimensional strings, gravitons, or any other proposed physical phenomena.
Curiously, I have no problems with the normal course of science, and the slow parsing away of falsified concepts to arrive at clearer and clearer conceptions of reality.
We also know that when there is insufficient evidence to reach an informed conclusion that science is perfectly happy to say "we don't know," and that we have to wait for further information and evidence to be gathered before a conclusion can be rational arrived at.
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 373 by DevilsAdvocate, posted 07-29-2010 6:29 AM DevilsAdvocate has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 420 by onifre, posted 07-30-2010 2:23 PM RAZD has replied
 Message 423 by DevilsAdvocate, posted 07-30-2010 2:34 PM RAZD has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1551 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 405 of 479 (571069)
07-29-2010 11:51 PM
Reply to: Message 402 by RAZD
07-29-2010 10:41 PM


Re: back to the begining?
It doesn't matter to me what you call it, it is still just your opinion, based on your world view, life experiences and biases.
No, again - an opinion is something reasonable people can reasonably disagree on.
When people adopt mutually inconsistent positions, those can't be described as matters of opinion. You can play all the dictionary games you like, but that doesn't prove that God can exist for you and not exist for me.
One of us has to be wrong. That's why it can't simply be a matter of opinion.
So you're saying that my position is that the sky is blue, and your position is that the sky is green, and that this terminology magically changes these positions from being opinions.
The only magic I believe in is the magic of language, where words have meaning. You're the one who believes in actual magic. Maintaining that the sky is green can't be an opinion; it's an issue of fact. Words mean things.
Thinking chocolate is the best ice cream flavor is an opinion, because I can think vanilla is the best flavor instead, and there's nothing inconsistent about our positions. But God can't exist for you and not exist for me. One of us has to be wrong (and according to the weight of the evidence, it's you.)
Opinion cannot change that recording or the spectrum labels.
That's how we know they're not opinions. Your opinion of ice cream, after all, can change or be changed; when you decide that strawberry is the best flavor, does that mean you were wrong when you thought it was chocolate? No, of course not. You were right then and you're right now, because they're matters of opinion - not matters of fact.
They taught this stuff in first grade, RAZD. Were you out that day or something?
You're expectations could be what is false here, rather than the existence of gods, so this is not evidence that god/s do not exist, just that your expectations are not met.
Of course this is just the dishonest theist game of retreat; where God is constantly redefined to lack whatever previously-essential characteristic was just disproven by the atheist. Ultimately you'll reach the point where "God" is just an empty word, a cypher devoid of all intelligible meaning - yet, somehow still maintained by you to exist.
I'm not at all interested in playing that game. I'm happy to debate whatever conception of God you want to define, but you have to pick one and stick with it.
Anyone of the belief\opinion\position that the earth and universe are young would have to be in denial of the massive objective empirical evidence of extreme old age of the earth and universe.
Sure. Just as anyone of the position that God exists would have to be in denial of the massive objective empirical evidence that there's absolutely no such thing; that it's an invention of the human imagination not an actual being of magical power.
And in your world where everything's just an opinion, who can say they're wrong to be in denial? Who's to tell them that their opinion that all that evidence can just be discarded is wrong? Not you, certainly; you've made it clear that you draw no distinction at all between matters of fact and matters of opinion. Everything's just an opinion, there's no true or false to it. There's not even provisional truth - just personal opinion.
They can still hold that opinion, but it would be delusional to do so, because the concept has been falsified.
Maybe they're just of the opinion that it hasn't been falsified at all. Who's to say they're wrong? Certainly not you. You've made that abundantly clear.
And, funny you should use that word "delusional":

This message is a reply to:
 Message 402 by RAZD, posted 07-29-2010 10:41 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 435 by RAZD, posted 07-31-2010 2:44 PM crashfrog has replied

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