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Author Topic:   Regarding the illusion of confidence
ssope
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Posts: 6
Joined: 09-04-2019


Message 1 of 18 (865598)
10-17-2019 3:09 PM


If you measure something 20 times and say it's an inch, you're wrong. Your measurement will vary based on the precision of the equipment you used. If you say something can't be in two places at once, you're wrong. Quantum mechanics has proven the superposition principle to be true. If you say time is constant, you're wrong. If GPS didn't take time dilation into account it wouldn't work. If you can't be certain about the simplest of things, explain to me how you are certain that God is not real?

Furthermore, to add to this topic, I bring up dark matter to showcase the idea and fact that there are scientific realities that are nearly imperceptible. There are physical characteristics of this reality that are impervious to detection.

Additionally,

Paul M. Sutter writes:

"our models and theories are representations and approximations of reality as we perceive it. That is not truth. The biggest giveaway is that scientific theories change with time. As we acquire new information or new data we have to update all of our beliefs. So how can it be the absolute truth if it is subject to change at a moment's notice"

Edited by ssope, : Added paragraphs: 'Furthermore.....' and 'Additionally...'

Edited by ssope, : Did not correctly use the quote tags


Replies to this message:
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AdminPhat
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From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-03-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 2 of 18 (865599)
10-17-2019 3:35 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by ssope
10-17-2019 3:09 PM


Considering This Topic
Hi, ssope. I understand the premise of your topic but I also know the critics here at EvC. They will say that science uses measurements on measurable things and will then ask you how you could even begin to measure something such as God. What examples of ways to measure would we use?

Lets breakdown your topic.

If you measure something 20 times and say it's an inch, you're wrong.
So what if you took an average between the 20 measurements? And for the sake of argument, let's say we are using the best possible equipment with which to measure. I agree with the quantum mechanics argument, but the critics will ask "so what"?

And finally...

explain to me how you are certain that God is not real.
This is the real question, is it not? Do me a favor and edit(rewrite) the opening statement...giving it a bit more thought. Also, which forum do you want your topic started in? If I recall, I promoted your last topic, and you had 17 replies to which you never responded. If we develop this one, let's allow you to participate. Rewrite this and get back to me, giving thought as to whether you wish to argue from a Faith-based perspective or a scientific one. I guess a lot depends on what, if anything, you hope to learn from the feedback.

Edited by AdminPhat, : No reason given.

Edited by AdminPhat, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by ssope, posted 10-17-2019 3:09 PM ssope has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by ssope, posted 10-18-2019 5:14 AM AdminPhat has responded

  
ssope
Junior Member
Posts: 6
Joined: 09-04-2019


Message 3 of 18 (865600)
10-18-2019 5:14 AM
Reply to: Message 2 by AdminPhat
10-17-2019 3:35 PM


Re: Considering This Topic
There is no claim or mention about "measuring God" in my topic. Your statement there doesn't really make sense to me. Also, it does not matter what device you use, there is an error associated with every measurement. Say you wanted a plant to manufacture a cylinder with an inch radius, as an engineer you would have to use something called geometric dimensions and tolerances to provide that manufacturer with the greatest error your part could tolerate because no one can manufacture an perfect one inch radius cylinder.

This topic is simply presenting a reasonable doubt to people who claim to be certain in their denial of God. It is presenting the inherent uncertainty in the very nature of science.

This might belong in the "is it science?" category

Edited by ssope, : No reason given.


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Replies to this message:
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AdminPhat
Administrator
Posts: 1945
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-03-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 4 of 18 (865601)
10-18-2019 5:47 AM
Reply to: Message 3 by ssope
10-18-2019 5:14 AM


Re: Considering This Topic
But will you participate? You didn't participate in your last promoted topic at all.

Edited by AdminPhat, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 3 by ssope, posted 10-18-2019 5:14 AM ssope has not yet responded

  
AdminPhat
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Posts: 1945
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-03-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 5 of 18 (865602)
10-18-2019 11:59 AM
Reply to: Message 3 by ssope
10-18-2019 5:14 AM


Re: Considering This Topic
This topic is simply presenting a reasonable doubt to people who claim to be certain in their denial of God.
OK I get it. You want to encourage the doubters to reconsider their conclusion.

So again I ask: If I promote it, will you answer the questions that people bring up? You never answered any questions at all in responses to your first promoted topic, The Pristine Question

Because you know that nobody writing in will agree with your premise. Perhaps you can rewrite and give several questions for them to answer. I will then promote...but only on the condition that you participate. The Ball is in your court, Tyler.

Edited by AdminPhat, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 3 by ssope, posted 10-18-2019 5:14 AM ssope has responded

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ssope
Junior Member
Posts: 6
Joined: 09-04-2019


Message 6 of 18 (865603)
10-28-2019 3:48 AM
Reply to: Message 5 by AdminPhat
10-18-2019 11:59 AM


Re: Considering This Topic
I will participate, but I won't be subjected to immediate responses, I still plan to respond to comments in my first topic. These discussions involve concepts and facts that exist inside an inseparably inter-connected web of other facts and concepts. It is my opinion that all content on this forum should be well thought out, and it should be your opinion too.

Furthermore, to add to this topic, I bring up dark matter to showcase the idea and fact that there are scientific realities that are nearly imperceptible. There are physical characteristics of this reality that are impervious to detection.

Additionally, "our models and theories are representations and approximations of reality as we perceive it. That is not truth. The biggest giveaway is that scientific theories change with time. As we acquire new information or new data we have to update all of our beliefs. So how can it be the absolute truth if it is subject to change at a moment's notice"
-->Paul Sutter

Edited by ssope, : No reason given.

Edited by ssope, : No reason given.


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AdminPhat
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Posts: 1945
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-03-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 7 of 18 (865605)
10-28-2019 4:04 AM


Thread Copied from Proposed New Topics Forum
Thread copied here from the Regarding the illusion of confidence thread in the Proposed New Topics forum.

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 7129
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.0


(2)
Message 8 of 18 (865606)
10-28-2019 4:34 AM


ssope writes:

Additionally, "our models and theories are representations and approximations of reality as we perceive it. That is not truth. The biggest giveaway is that scientific theories change with time. As we acquire new information or new data we have to update all of our beliefs. So how can it be the absolute truth if it is subject to change at a moment's notice"

Science does not deal in 'absolute truths' or 'beliefs'. Neither do its theories 'change at a moments notice'.

It's science that tells you that the accuracy of measurements are dependent on multiple variables. It calculates the error bars expected when taking the measurements. It's science that tells you the properties of quantum mechanics and it's science that allows you to talk the bollox you will undoubtedly talk about dark matter.

If you can't be certain about the simplest of things, explain to me how you are certain that God is not real?

And that's the inevitable total non sequitur. Knowing that there's a error range in measuring a meter length has nothing to do with whether there's a god or not.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by ssope, posted 10-28-2019 5:30 AM Tangle has responded

  
ssope
Junior Member
Posts: 6
Joined: 09-04-2019


Message 9 of 18 (865608)
10-28-2019 5:30 AM
Reply to: Message 8 by Tangle
10-28-2019 4:34 AM


tangle writes:

Science does not deal in 'absolute truths' or 'beliefs'


You're not using those words correctly. Truth = a fact or belief that is accepted. Belief = an acceptance that a concept is true. Fact = a thing that is known or proved to be true
[source =merriam-webster]

tangle writes:

It's science that tells you that the accuracy of measurements are dependent on multiple variables


Science doesn't "tell you" anything, the mind forms conclusions based on the instruments you used to obtain the raw information

tangle writes:

It calculates the error bars


What is "it"? Science is a systematically organized body of knowledge. Science is not arithmetic.

Also, you highlight my mention of dark matter in a derogatory way without providing a reason to view it that way.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 8 by Tangle, posted 10-28-2019 4:34 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 7129
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.0


(1)
Message 10 of 18 (865613)
10-28-2019 7:27 AM
Reply to: Message 9 by ssope
10-28-2019 5:30 AM


ssope writes:

You're not using those words correctly. Truth = a fact or belief that is accepted. Belief = an acceptance that a concept is true. Fact = a thing that is known or proved to be true

Absolute truths and beliefs are the territory of religion, not science. Sciences conclusions are tentative and subject to refinements.

Science doesn't "tell you" anything, the mind forms conclusions based on the instruments you used to obtain the raw information

And that's what we call science

What is "it"? Science is a systematically organized body of knowledge. Science is not arithmetic.

Science includes maths.

Also, you highlight my mention of dark matter in a derogatory way without providing a reason to view it that way.

We have experience here of fundamentalist idiots trying to jemmy their beliefs into the latest scientific discovery in an attempt to find their god hiding there. Let's hope that you're not just another of them eh? It's not a good start.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by ssope, posted 10-28-2019 5:30 AM ssope has not yet responded

  
Stile
Member
Posts: 3863
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


(3)
Message 11 of 18 (865614)
10-28-2019 8:10 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by ssope
10-17-2019 3:09 PM


Title says:

quote:
Regarding the illusion of confidence

(bolding is mine)

Main question says:

quote:
If you can't be certain about the simplest of things, explain to me how you are certain that God is not real?

(bolding is mine)

You seem to be confused about the difference between confidence and certainty.
Understand that, and you'll have your answer.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by ssope, posted 10-17-2019 3:09 PM ssope has not yet responded

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 15565
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.0


(1)
Message 12 of 18 (865616)
10-28-2019 8:52 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by ssope
10-17-2019 3:09 PM


Let me start by pointing out that this is not a well-thought out post. There is no clear thesis - indeed it isn’t even coherent.

If the point is that science doesn’t offer beliefs we can be confident in, then why offer examples that rely on scientific proof ?

E.g

quote:
If you say something can't be in two places at once, you're wrong. Quantum mechanics has proven the superposition principle to be true.

The Dark Matter addition is also odd. We have confidence in the existence of Dark Matter because of scientific evidence. If we had less evidence we would have less confidence, and if we had none we wouldn’t believe in it at all. Perhaps it is the believers that should question their views.

Further, where Is the argument meant to go ? If it is only intended to argue that some atheists have more confidence in their views than the evidence warrants, then why should we care ? Plenty of theists have confidence in views that are contrary to the evidence (e.g Young Earthers).

It is my opinion that all content on this forum should be well thought out, and it should be your opinion too.

Message 6

If that is so, you should not have wanted your topic to be promoted. Even with the considerable revisions to the initial post it is certainly not well thought out.


This message is a reply to:
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RAZD
Member
Posts: 20258
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.9


(2)
Message 13 of 18 (865625)
10-28-2019 1:01 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by ssope
10-28-2019 3:48 AM


Re: Considering This Topic
I see you edited your quote in Message 1.

Additionally, "our models and theories are representations and approximations of reality as we perceive it. That is not truth. The biggest giveaway is that scientific theories change with time. As we acquire new information or new data we have to update all of our beliefs. So how can it be the absolute truth if it is subject to change at a moment's notice"
-->Paul Sutter

Do you mean this Paul Sutter?

A better way to use quotes is:

type [quote]quotes are easy[/quote] and it becomes:

quote:
quotes are easy

You can also provide links to your source by using [url=www.http source](Paul Sutter)[/quote] and it becomes:

(Paul Sutter)

So here you could have done:

quote:
(Paul Sutter)

... our models and theories are representations and approximations of reality as we perceive it. That is not truth. The biggest giveaway is that scientific theories change with time. As we acquire new information or new data we have to update all of our beliefs. So how can it be the absolute truth if it is subject to change at a moment's notice"


Also, the preferred link for your source would have the quote and where it came from so we can ensure it is a valid quote in both content and context.

Now I note that "at a moments notice" is superfluous -- if it is absolute truth it is not subject to change, by definition.

What we have in science, as others have said, is not "truth" but tentative conclusions, conclusions that are our best known approximations of truth to date. Being approximations they are subject to refinement or replacement by a better approximation.

... It is my opinion that all content on this forum should be well thought out, and it should be your opinion too.

And I would add, supported by evidence and properly referenced material/articles/etc.

I will participate, but I won't be subjected to immediate responses, I still plan to respond to comments in my first topic. ...

We await. Take your time. One big question though: are you willing to learn? Or do you think you come here to teach?

Message 1If you measure something 20 times and say it's an inch, you're wrong. Your measurement will vary based on the precision of the equipment you used. ...

Not correct. If I measure it and say it is an inch give or take 1/16" as all those measurements show, then that is the most correct answer. The fact that those measurements can vary within those margins does not mean it is false and the answer is really 1 meter. This is what is meant by tentative conclusions and approximations of reality.

Enjoy

ps -- you can add the Paul Sutter quote to your signature if you want. Just go to {your CP}.

Edited by RAZD, : added last.

Edited by RAZD, : .

Edited by RAZD, : ..


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


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This message is a reply to:
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Diomedes
Member
Posts: 919
From: Central Florida, USA
Joined: 09-13-2013
Member Rating: 2.7


(2)
Message 14 of 18 (865633)
10-28-2019 2:59 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by ssope
10-17-2019 3:09 PM


If you can't be certain about the simplest of things, explain to me how you are certain that God is not real?

Right out of the gate, this post starts off with a burden of proof logical fallacy:

Burden of Proof Logical Fallacy
(Sometimes referred to shifting the burden of proof)

Description: Making a claim that needs justification, then demanding that the opponent justifies the opposite of the claim.

This probably falls with the PRATT area (Point Refuted A Thousand Times).
But just to reiterate: the burden of proof lies with the individual making the claim. If someone posits the notion of a god, a demon, a leprechaun, a fairy, a pixie, bigfoot, yeti, little green men, or The Flying Spaghetti Monster, regardless of the thing being mentioned, it is up to the person positing the claim to back up their claim.

There is no burden of proof to the individuals asking for evidence or providing counter-evidence to the individual that started the claim. The burden of proof is with the claimant; not the individual's providing feedback on the claim.


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RAZD
Member
Posts: 20258
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.9


(1)
Message 15 of 18 (865644)
10-28-2019 5:16 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by ssope
10-28-2019 5:30 AM


messy messy messy
You're not using those words correctly. Truth = a fact or belief that is accepted. ...

You want to play definitions?

You were talking about "absolute truth" before. Don't equivocate between truth and absolute truth. Truth is a word that has layers of connotations.

quote:
Truth is most often used to mean being in accord with fact or reality, or fidelity to an original or standard.[1] Truth is also sometimes defined in modern contexts as an idea of "truth to self", or authenticity.

Truth is usually held to be opposite to falsehood, which, correspondingly, can also suggest a logical, factual, or ethical meaning. The concept of truth is discussed and debated in several contexts, including philosophy, art, theology, and science. Most human activities depend upon the concept, where its nature as a concept is assumed rather than being a subject of discussion; these include most of the sciences, law, journalism, and everyday life. Some philosophers view the concept of truth as basic, and unable to be explained in any terms that are more easily understood than the concept of truth itself. To some, truth is viewed as the correspondence of language or thought to an independent reality, in what is sometimes called the correspondence theory of truth.

Various theories and views of truth continue to be debated among scholars, philosophers, and theologians.[2] Language is a means by which humans convey information to one another. The method used to determine whether something is a truth is termed a criterion of truth. There are varying stances on such questions as what constitutes truth: what things are truthbearers capable of being true or false; how to define, identify, and distinguish truth; what roles do faith and empirical knowledge play; and whether truth can be subjective or if it is objective (in other words, relative truth versus absolute truth).


Italics and underline added for emphasis.

Scientists generally stay away from using "truth" because it is murky and because science is tentative and approximate rather than absolute. That is why "acceptance" is generally used instead. For instance:

The theory of evolution is generally accepted as the best explanation for the diversity of life as we know it on earth.

... Belief = an acceptance that a concept is true. ...
[source =merriam-webster]

... whether it is or isn't actually true ...

One of several definitions given by merriam-webster:

quote:
Definition of belief

1 : a state or habit of mind in which trust or confidence is placed in some person or thing
// her belief in God
// a belief in democracy
// I bought the table in the belief that it was an antique.
// contrary to popular belief
2 : something that is accepted, considered to be true, or held as an opinion : something believed
// an individual's religious or political beliefs
especially : a tenet or body of tenets held by a group
// the beliefs of the Catholic Church
3 : conviction of the truth of some statement or the reality of some being or phenomenon especially when based on examination of evidence
// belief in the validity of scientific statements


Note that only the last one mentions evidence, and that the last line would be better rendered as
// acceptance of the validity of scientific statements (when based on examination of evidence)

... Fact = a thing that is known or proved to be true
[source =merriam-webster]

Again, only part of what the link says:

quote:
Definition of fact

1a : something that has actual existence
  // space exploration is now a fact
  b : an actual occurrence
  // prove the fact of damage
2 : a piece of information presented as having objective reality
  // These are the hard facts of the case.
3 : the quality of being actual : actuality
  // a question of fact hinges on evidence
4 : a thing done: such as
  a : crime
  // accessory after the fact
  b archaic : action
  c obsolete : feat
5 archaic : performance, doing


Note -- it does NOT say "proved to be true"

A fact is something that exists in reality. It is objective and empirical - it can be studied by anyone.

Theories are developed to explain facts. The better they explain the facts, and the more facts they explain, the closer they are to approximating reality.

Enjoy

Edited by RAZD, : theory


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)

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