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Author Topic:   Is science atheism?
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 3 of 126 (886145)
05-07-2021 5:48 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by PaulK
05-07-2021 12:03 PM


PaulK writes:

Behe, by the way was not sacked from his position at Lehigh.

He's got tenure. His views have been repudiated by both his fellow colleagues and by his university. Presumably he kept his creationist views secret until after he obtained tenure, for he said this as described at The Case of Behe vs. Darwin:

quote:
“Students and aspiring teachers who are intrigued by my work often ask me for advice, how they can help me out,” he said. “And I tell them: ‘Until you have tenure, until you’re protected, keep your mouth shut and your head down.’ ”

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by PaulK, posted 05-07-2021 12:03 PM PaulK has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 5 by PaulK, posted 05-07-2021 6:03 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


(1)
Message 78 of 126 (886713)
06-01-2021 10:31 AM
Reply to: Message 76 by Raphael
05-23-2021 6:35 PM


Re: Non-Creation Christianity
Raphael writes:

Not at all! As I said, I do not think atheism is a religion or club or anything. I have learned a lot from the responses of others in this thread, and I feel myself shifting on this point. It seems to me that since atheism is not a religion/creed/club/group, it is so deeply personal, different people hold their atheism differently. It would be arrogant of me to assume (as PaulK pointed out) I understand how each person holds their atheism.

I thought I'd give you another data point. I'm not an atheist or agnostic, I believe in God, but my beliefs are so far outside the norm that from your perspective I may as well be an atheist. I was raised Unitarian and still consider myself a Unitarian (the Unitarians might not consider me a Unitarian, but they're very accepting) but there are almost no Unitarian churches left. If Unitarian/Universalist labeling were accurate (they merged in 1961) it would say Unitatrian/Universalist. One advantage Unitarian churches have here in New England is that they were the dominant religion in this region during a big era in church building, and so many Unitarian churches are on town greens or on prime real estate downtown. But I digress.

Except when in religious discussions at this forum, I never, ever think about atheism or religion or my own personal spiritual beliefs. In my priority order of life, spiritual stuff is probably down around sorting my sock drawer.

I don't disagree, Christians (I am one) can be the most arrogant of all. However I will only add an addition: arrogance can grow anywhere, especially in echo chambers where you surround yourself with people who believe and think like yourself. There is a sort of grace that happens when you meet someone who has totally different values and beliefs and realize wow, I'm not right about everything, this person has a gift to give me! This is why I intentionally seek out others who believe differently and attempt to understand them. It's why I'm here, too

This site was begun to host the creation/evolution debate, and I think creationism's nearly century long war on science is the height and epitomization of Christian arrogance. If Christians believe it then it is true and should be believed by everyone starting in the public schools. If you're a typical conservative Christian then you believe that where your religion disagrees with science that science is wrong and the views of your religion should instead be taught in public schools, or at least given equal time. No thought is given to giving equal time to Christian religions that disagree with you or to the views of non-Christian religions.

You explain this Christian arrogance yourself:

Arrogance can grow anywhere, especially in echo chambers where you surround yourself with people who believe and think like yourself.

Then there's this:

There is a sort of grace that happens when you meet someone who has totally different values and beliefs and realize wow, I'm not right about everything, this person has a gift to give me! This is why I intentionally seek out others who believe differently and attempt to understand them. It's why I'm here, too

I see little grace in Christian writings here, mostly arrogance, and certainly little specificity or knowledge outside the Bible or their own church. Those on the science side could never count the number of times they've been warned they're on the path to hell, that they'd better get right with God and prepare for eternal damnation. Many Christians arguing creationism here have quickly run out of ammunition and descended into preaching.

You're preaching, too, running a sort of experiment on how well SDA apologetics plays out in the real world. No progress is being made on either side, and won't be if past is any guide.

How many years have you invested in SDA? More than just a few, I would gather, and you won't give up such an investment just because of conversations with a few doubters. But in those years how many theological revelations has your religion discovered? Is it approximately zero? I think it is, right?

But in the same number of years how many new developments have come from science? It's probably uncountable. To name some major ones, there's the discovery of gravitational waves, proving the existence of dark matter, discovering water on Mars, discovery of the Higgs Boson, and reprogramming stem cells. On the engineering side there's proving space missions can be far cheaper than typical Nasa/Boeing/Lockheed/etc. missions, commercially viable electric cars, economical fuel cells that might one day become a factor, cheap solar cells, wnd power, and the Large Hadron Collider that made discovery of the Higgs Boson possible.

What has your religion accomplished that might support any claim of equality with science? Nothing. Religion has no recent scientific accomplishments, nor any no matter how far you look back. And you can't claim your advances are equivalent but on the theological side of the ledger because you have none there, either.

We all impose meaning onto things, whether they have meaning or not.

I would instead say that seeking meaning is very human, but realizing there is usually no meaning is not rocket science.

Though personally I do believe these things reflect actual spiritual reality, one does not need to to see what these beliefs add to humanity and human flourishing.

On a personal level, my father was told at the first social gathering he attended after moving to a new town that his kind weren't wanted around there, a friend's mother-in-law hated her because she wasn't Jewish, and a friend's son left the Catholic church because he's gay. On an international level the Arabs hate the Jews, the Muslims hate the Hindus, and the Sunnis hate the Shi'ites. It is obvious what religion adds.

Also, your scenario begs of question of what you would call "atheism." To us atheists, it means "not theism.

Unpack this more, if you would. What does "not theism" mean to you? You reject theism? You do not believe in theism? If it is not a stance, why take a stance? If it is a stance, what stance is it? Is it an intellectual category under which, say, agnosticism and anti-thism might fall as types of atheism? How do you understand this?

This has been answered before. What part of "This is not in any way a part of my life and I spend no time thinking about it" don't you understand? "Not theism" is as much a part of my life as "not unicornism." We non-theists (which, again, I'm not, but from your perspective let's just say I am) are not endlessly dodging the smitings of angry gods. There is not a single consequence arising from non-belief in God, so there is nothing to make it appear on our radar screens.

...nobody knows anything about the supernatural...

Yet in the complete absence of knowledge you made a decision anyway.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 76 by Raphael, posted 05-23-2021 6:35 PM Raphael has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 79 of 126 (886716)
06-01-2021 10:39 AM
Reply to: Message 77 by dwise1
05-31-2021 3:56 PM


Re: Non-Creation Christianity
dwise1 writes:

Sorry for the delay. So many things happening (eg, IRS suddenly wants immediately 25 years of our parents' family trust's tax returns which don't exist), including taking a few check-out breaks.

This is off-topic, but I'm responsible for filing the family trust tax returns, so I'm curious. What did you do to get on the IRS's radar screen?

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 77 by dwise1, posted 05-31-2021 3:56 PM dwise1 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 80 by dwise1, posted 06-01-2021 11:20 AM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 81 of 126 (886724)
06-01-2021 1:34 PM
Reply to: Message 80 by dwise1
06-01-2021 11:20 AM


Re: Non-Creation Christianity
I think your CPA friend is right, I'm sure he's seen it all before. I have similar issues to yours, though no pandemic when I started. I handle all the parts I understand, but I also had a CPA and a lawyer right from the beginning, paid for out of the trust. They had a lot of experience in recognizing which things that didn't feel right were real problems. We think we're out of the woods but won't know for sure for a couple more years - I'm told it can sometimes take the IRS a year or three before they decide there's a problem.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 80 by dwise1, posted 06-01-2021 11:20 AM dwise1 has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 83 by dwise1, posted 06-05-2021 1:14 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 100 of 126 (886818)
06-10-2021 3:06 PM
Reply to: Message 99 by Phat
06-09-2021 12:43 PM


Re: Perceived Choices and Options
Phat writes:

I was assuming that both of us were "in love" with the choice which we made.

You slipped back into your original phrasing, using the word "choice." Another analogy is math. We do not choose that 2+2=4. There's just no other option.

I get defensive sometimes when my critics/opponents dismiss my perceived choice as fantasy-driven and out of touch with reality.

Whether criticism is deserved depends. Is belief in God a spiritual choice? Or, as with Raphael, is it a reasoned conclusion based on what he'll insist is evidence. Do you know of any science or mathematics, fields that we know tell us things that are very likely true about the real world, that accepts revelation as an answer?

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Typos.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 99 by Phat, posted 06-09-2021 12:43 PM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 101 by Phat, posted 06-11-2021 4:07 PM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 102 of 126 (886860)
06-13-2021 9:02 AM
Reply to: Message 101 by Phat
06-11-2021 4:07 PM


Re: Perceived Choices and Options
Phat writes:

I get defensive sometimes when my critics/opponents dismiss my perceived choice as fantasy-driven and out of touch with reality.
...
For me, I became convinced when my entire inner feeling changed.

Nothing changed but your thinking/feelings. No new information became available to you, and nothing in the real world changed.

Since that initial time, it has largely been confirmation bias.

Why are you knowingly applying a fallacious non-objective method? Announcing this is like bragging, "I'm an idiot only interested in cementing what I already believe while ignoring evidence of other possibilities."

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 101 by Phat, posted 06-11-2021 4:07 PM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 103 by Phat, posted 06-13-2021 11:41 AM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 105 of 126 (886893)
06-15-2021 9:35 AM
Reply to: Message 103 by Phat
06-13-2021 11:41 AM


Re: Perceived Choices and Options
Phat writes:

My reply was a bit tongue-in-cheek. When I was taught (or read) the formative beliefs which I adapted, I adapted them because they sounded rational and correct to me. New information is considered by me based on how it feels to me rather than any evidence attached to it.

How is this not pretty much the same claptrap as what you said before?

I am unmoved by only evidence...for evidence is never final..it is by nature progressive.

Not even you believe this. If you look out your window and see rain you are immediately convinced by the evidence that it is raining out. If you're driving and see an oncoming car drifting into your lane you're immediately convinced by only evidence that you're in danger and should seek ways to maneuver to the right. You are "moved" by only evidence constantly all the time throughout your life.

I think what you're trying to say is that you feel free to accept or reject evidence based on how you feel about it when it comes to things that can't hurt you or negatively affect you in some way.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 103 by Phat, posted 06-13-2021 11:41 AM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 108 by Phat, posted 06-17-2021 12:37 PM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20334
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 121 of 126 (886935)
06-19-2021 12:50 PM
Reply to: Message 108 by Phat
06-17-2021 12:37 PM


Re: Perceived Choices and Options
phat writes:

Phat writes:

I get defensive sometimes when my critics/opponents dismiss my perceived choice as fantasy-driven and out of touch with reality.
For me, I became convinced when my entire inner feeling changed.

Percy writes:

Nothing changed but your thinking/feelings.

I suppose you can argue that. Most believers would assert that something changed them. That their thinking and feelings were changed.

What's the evidence that something changed their feelings? More feelings?

No new information became available to you, and nothing in the real world changed.

How could you know that? You are not a garden variety believer and thus you have never had the experience with which to critically evaluate.

Do you have evidence of anything real? Anything besides feelings? Feelings that can't be shared with anyone else other than by describing them?

Phat, Tongue firmly in cheek writes:

Since that initial time, it has largely been confirmation bias.

Percy writes:

Why are you knowingly applying a fallacious non-objective method? Announcing this is like bragging, "I'm an idiot only interested in cementing what I already believe while ignoring evidence of other possibilities."

Why not?

You're welcome to use a fallacious non-objective method, but if you do then you've relinquished any claims to knowing something about reality.

If you apply the critical thinking of the scientific method to your belief, you likely will never settle on anything.

If by belief you mean my spiritual beliefs then yes, of course. In the absence of objective, repeatable evidence the scientific method cannot reach any conclusions.

I believe in standing for something and taking a leap of faith that what I feel and experience is/was God rather than keep looking for something else.

You're more than welcome to your leap of faith - just don't claim that it represents anything true about the real world.

I have felt as if He speaks to me at times.

Feelings again.

I have heard similar confirming stories from others...

These "similar confirming stories" wouldn't happened to have been from people who have read the same Bible you have and been steeped in the same Christian culture you have, would they?

And here's where your confirmation bias comes in. You're offering these "similar confirming stories" while ignoring the "dissimilar nonconfirming stories" that you've most certainly heard.

...in some cases, lives were changed for the better.

Sure. Over a lifetime most people's lives become better and worse and better and worse and so on. You can attribute these changes to God or good deeds looked on approvingly by God or sinning looked on disapprovingly by God or to the invisible spaghetti monster or to whatever. There's no real world evidence for any of it, just feelings. And surely no Christian would be so dishonest as to deny that how he felt about various aspects of Christian belief changed over time. Beliefs and feelings are as inconstant as Juliet's moon.

The only place I ever hear tales of lives getting better after dropping religion (and God, and Jesus and the whole nine yards) is in places like EvC. I think many of you threw the Holy Baby out with the bathwater.

Exactly how many times have you been disabused of this conceit? You know all the counterarguments. Stop ignoring them and start addressing them.

But go with Science as a philosophy and see how it helps you through hard times.

We've already seen how going with religion as a philosophy has helped you through hard times. You seem in a worse place now than you've ever been, plus you're sinking further into irrationality while using the senseless claim that because it's what you feel that it's therefore true and a valid part of Christianity which of course must be true because it has so many adherents. You pile fallacy upon fallacy.

To define and believe that reality favors no one and that we as humans must struggle to survive is not far from Christianity. The main difference is that you dismiss God and claim we must do it ourselves. How depressing! I could care less if I'm the grass that pushed through the sidewalk and survived. Survival in and of itself means nothing. I don't worship our collective offspring.

If this isn't mostly nonsense then you're going to have to explain it. You accuse others of dismissing God as if God were their particular target. He's not. He's your object of attention. It wouldn't matter what unevidenced idea you advocated - any science minded person would dismiss it as unevidenced. That doesn't mean your unevidenced idea isn't something true about the real world, but it does mean that it has just as much chance of being true as any other completely unevidenced idea.

Percy writes:

I think what you're trying to say is that you feel free to accept or reject evidence based on how you feel about it when it comes to things that can't hurt you or negatively affect you in some way.

I'm thinking about this statement. In some ways, I feel free to accept or reject evidence and how I feel about it when it applies to things that CAN hurt me or negatively affect me.

Name some well evidenced idea that can hurt you that you reject. Will you be jumping off a roof or breathing carbon monoxide or putting your hand in a flame or locking yourself naked in a walk-in freezer or ingesting ant poison or cease taking your meds anytime soon?

The whole idea of "throwing God away" is insulting and disrespectful to not only Him but to humans in general.

What a colossal conceit. Christians can reject Mohammed, Allah, Buddha, Moroni and the rest because they're right, but those of other religions rejecting the Christian God are "insulting and disrespectful."

It's unbelievable that you continually utter such hateful and intolerant things. It's as if you never listen to yourself or think about how others might perceive what you say. You just blurt your bigoted ideas right out into the open.

We are NOT God. Nor are we the only solution to our own survival. (proving this won't be easy, I know)

Tenuous logic here. You'll have to explain.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 108 by Phat, posted 06-17-2021 12:37 PM Phat has not yet responded

  
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