Understanding through Discussion


Welcome! You are not logged in. [ Login ]
EvC Forum active members: 78 (8896 total)
Current session began: 
Page Loaded: 03-21-2019 12:25 PM
108 online now:
dwise1, JoeT, PaulK, Percy (Admin), ringo, Tanypteryx (6 members, 102 visitors)
Chatting now:  Chat room empty
Newest Member: WookieeB
Post Volume:
Total: 848,526 Year: 3,563/19,786 Month: 558/1,087 Week: 148/212 Day: 15/49 Hour: 0/1


Thread  Details

Email This Thread
Newer Topic | Older Topic
  
RewPrev1
...
151617
18
1920Next
Author Topic:   Eternal Life (thanks, but no thanks)
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 553 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 256 of 296 (596270)
12-14-2010 6:14 AM
Reply to: Message 255 by Just being real
12-14-2010 5:56 AM


Endless depths
Just being real writes:

Think of the love you feel for the person on earth to whom you are the closest.

Is that the person he is closest to now, or when he was eighteen, or when he was six?

Jbr writes:

Now imagine that feeling with someone who is an infinite creator who you could literally spend eternity discovering the depths of His love and grace.

I think you might be inadvertantly supporting the "imaginary friend" theory of people's gods.

Jbr writes:

You never become board[sic]

Endlessly discovering the endless depths of someone? Speak for yourself.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 255 by Just being real, posted 12-14-2010 5:56 AM Just being real has not yet responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 16227
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 257 of 296 (596324)
12-14-2010 11:15 AM
Reply to: Message 255 by Just being real
12-14-2010 5:56 AM


Just being real writes:

Think of the love you feel for the person on earth to whom you are the closest. The one person in your life who gives you the greatest joy and meaning to life.

[...]

Now imagine an eternity separated from that love.


For some of us, you have the tense wrong. It should be, "were the closest," and, "gave the greatest joy and meaning."

Often the memories of lost loves are the sweetest.


"I'm Rory Bellows, I tell you! And I got a lot of corroborating evidence... over here... by the throttle!"
This message is a reply to:
 Message 255 by Just being real, posted 12-14-2010 5:56 AM Just being real has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 269 by Just being real, posted 12-15-2010 10:23 PM ringo has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 180 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 258 of 296 (596350)
12-14-2010 1:17 PM
Reply to: Message 255 by Just being real
12-14-2010 5:56 AM


So the thing I am wondering here Modulous, is if you are going to set up a discussion where we are conjecturing "what if" eternal life is true, then why do you still require it to strictly adhere to your conception of reality?

I'm open to better conceptions of reality if anyone is willing to provide one.

Likewise if you are going to allow for the sake of argument that there is a God, heaven, and eternal life to be had, then you have to spring for the full package which also states that you have a soul.

Agreed. The thing I want to survive is my personality, my memories, my thoughts, beliefs, opinions and so on - do you agree?

And though your body has changed since you were 18, and is not the same body, your soul though hopefully wiser and more mature, is and always will be the real you. That part of you has the ability to expand infinitely in understanding and knowledge, however it is not replicating itself. Therefore according to Christian theology, you do not ever become something entirely different from the person you are now, you merely expand upon that person.

Then I see no reason to look forward to living a billion years, I will have expanded into something I don't recognize today. All the things that I want to survive will be more than ancient history, so why should I care if my soul happens to survive? I have mentally changed as well as physically - my personality, viewpoint etc has changed agreed? So who cares if the soul is the same, the soul is meaningless in this equation.

Think of the love you feel for the person on earth to whom you are the closest. The one person in your life who gives you the greatest joy and meaning to life. Now imagine feeling that relationship grow stronger day by day forever and ever. You never become board and you keep discovering new and fascinating things about that person every day. Now imagine that feeling with someone who is an infinite creator who you could literally spend eternity discovering the depths of His love and grace.

Now imagine an eternity separated from that love. An eternity that you chose by squandering away every chance that you were given to freely receive it.

Neither seems all that great, that's kind of my point. Incidentally - if 'I' never grow bored, then that isn't me since I am easily bored and what you described sounds like it'd get pretty boring to me. So 'I' haven't survived my death at all.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 255 by Just being real, posted 12-14-2010 5:56 AM Just being real has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 270 by Just being real, posted 12-15-2010 10:23 PM Modulous has responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 180 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 259 of 296 (596497)
12-15-2010 4:48 AM
Reply to: Message 253 by BarackZero
12-13-2010 12:18 PM


Modulous the Pretend Pirate wearing a shirt too large for his neck:

A friend got married on September 19th - what can I say? My friends like to laugh at people that take themselves too seriously.

The "dilemma" you so superficially constructed is a strawman. It is as absurd as you look wearing your little pirate's hat.

That's pretty absurd.

If anyone you know presented you with a photograph of you at your high school graduation ceremony, and asked if that was you, you would of course answer in the affirmative. And yet in your opening line, you claim otherwise. You're "different" and the old you is gone. I have only heard such nonsense prattled from the godless left, speaking of which

Sounds like you misunderstood something I said. You cite my opening line 'Your followers on Earth have assured me that I will live forever.' Maybe you were referring to a different line?

2. Your first two words, Mister Pirate, are "Dear God." So clearly you are not addressing anyone who posts on this forum.

You should probably read closer, my serious friend. I specifically directed the comments to the members of this board just moments later.

quote:
I have a few questions about this immortality, that I think it is vital you answer for me. Failing that, perhaps you can inspire some of your followers who are members here to tell me.

Moreover, since you are a militant atheist, you are also self-contradictory, writing to the "supernatural" being you have denied countless times.
How unscholarly of you.

Yes, it's unscholarly to generate a counter-argument by assuming the opposing view is correct and seeing where it leads. And God forbid (hah!) that we use style, or rhetorical flourish eh?

4. The pretense that your bizarre creation of a "dilemma" applies to everyone else is something else you need to explain. For Stephen Hawking, who has been confined to a wheelchair for most of his life, one might think that he would welcome the transition to a new status where he could spend a good deal more time enjoying himself than he has spent here on earth.

I have not claimed that either
1) This dilemma applies to anyone else (and have indeed stressed this is my personal subjective opinion)
2) That an extended life, with health and comfort is undesireable.

Did you have any objections, or did you just want to create a strawman that is as absurd as my wearing a paper hat?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 253 by BarackZero, posted 12-13-2010 12:18 PM BarackZero has not yet responded

  
Omnivorous
Member (Idle past 1043 days)
Posts: 3808
From: Adirondackia
Joined: 07-21-2005


Message 260 of 296 (596507)
12-15-2010 11:16 AM
Reply to: Message 242 by GDR
12-05-2010 9:08 PM


What is 'science of the gaps'?
Hi, GDR. I don't think Otto was claiming that science will reveal all, but he can respond to that himself. I'm interested in your comments about a "science of the gaps" argument.

In saying that science is capable of giving us all of the answers, you are using a science of the gaps argument, in that essentially you're saying that although we don't know the answers now science will eventually fill in the gaps.

I have several times recently seen references to a "science of the gaps" argument. I recognize the turnabout charm of amending the "god of the gaps" charge, but I can't quite grasp the sense of it.

God of the gaps, from Wiki:

quote:
God of the gaps refers to a view of God as existing in the "gaps" or aspects of reality that are currently unexplained by scientific knowledge, or that otherwise lack a plausible natural explanation.

According to John Habgood in The Westminster Dictionary of Christian Theology, the phrase is generally derogatory, and is inherently a direct criticism of a tendency to postulate acts of God to explain phenomena for which science has yet to give a satisfactory account.

"It is theologically more satisfactory to look for evidence of God's actions within natural processes rather than apart from them, in much the same way that the meaning of a book transcends, but is not independent of, the paper and ink of which it is comprised."


So what is a "science of the gaps" argument? Paralleling the god of the gaps definition above, is it "a tendency to postulate natural causes to explain phenomena for which theology has yet to give a satisfactory account"?

Surely not. Perhaps it is "a tendency to postulate natural causes to explain phenomena"--but isn't that faulting science for doing science? Or perhaps you simply mean that science is too optimistic about how much of the natural world can be described and understood?

It is fair enough, I suppose, to chastise any human endeavor about its cockiness, but it isn't a "science of the gaps" to note that science has steadily removed natural phenomena from the realm of religion and superstition, nor is it "science of the gaps" to expect that science will continue to do so.

So it seems to me that the "science of the gaps" charge just flat makes no sense.

Believers using the "god of the gaps" argument say, "My god is in the gaps where science cannot see."

Scientists say, "We will understand more about the natural universe in the future; as in the past, gaps in our knowledge and understanding will be filled."

One of these attempts to use ignorance as a defense against criticism; the other sees ignorance as a challenge.

Have I misunderstood what you meant by "science of the gaps"?


I know there's a balance, I see it when I swing past.
-J. Mellencamp

Real things always push back.
-William James


This message is a reply to:
 Message 242 by GDR, posted 12-05-2010 9:08 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 261 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 11:47 AM Omnivorous has responded

    
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 261 of 296 (596510)
12-15-2010 11:47 AM
Reply to: Message 260 by Omnivorous
12-15-2010 11:16 AM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
Omnivorous writes:

I have several times recently seen references to a "science of the gaps" argument. I recognize the turnabout charm of amending the "god of the gaps" charge, but I can't quite grasp the sense of it.

Otto made the following statement.

quote:
If someone had their science 100% accurate, they would have no need for theology

On other words given sufficient information he believes that science can give a material or naturalistic answer to all of the big questions.

That is an issue of faith. I believe that science will never be able to provide a satisfactory answer for our ability to think altruistically. I believe the answer lies outside the materialistic world. That is a matter of faith and if I were to make that argument I would be guilty of making a 'god of the gaps' argument.

Otto is stating that science can provide the answer to questions such as why we can think altruistically. He believes that there is a material answer. That is a matter of faith at this point and so I consider that he is using a 'science of the gaps' argument.

I'm not suggesting that science should stop looking for answers to those questions but the point is that, although there are theoretical explanations to many of the big questions, there is no scientific answer. Maybe there will be some day and maybe there won't.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 260 by Omnivorous, posted 12-15-2010 11:16 AM Omnivorous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 262 by nwr, posted 12-15-2010 12:11 PM GDR has responded
 Message 264 by ringo, posted 12-15-2010 12:16 PM GDR has responded
 Message 265 by Omnivorous, posted 12-15-2010 2:41 PM GDR has responded

    
nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 262 of 296 (596516)
12-15-2010 12:11 PM
Reply to: Message 261 by GDR
12-15-2010 11:47 AM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
GDR writes:
Otto made the following statement.

quote:
If someone had their science 100% accurate, they would have no need for theology

On other words given sufficient information he believes that science can give a material or naturalistic answer to all of the big questions.


I'm not sure what Otto meant, but suspect that you might be misinterpreting him.

Scientists who say that they have no need for theology are mostly not saying that science has answers to all of the big questions. They are only saying that theology doesn't have answers - or at least doesn't have real answers.


Jesus was a liberal hippie
This message is a reply to:
 Message 261 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 11:47 AM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 263 by jar, posted 12-15-2010 12:14 PM nwr has acknowledged this reply
 Message 268 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 3:35 PM nwr has acknowledged this reply

  
jar
Member
Posts: 30934
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 263 of 296 (596517)
12-15-2010 12:14 PM
Reply to: Message 262 by nwr
12-15-2010 12:11 PM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
nwr writes:

They are only saying that theology doesn't have answers - or at least doesn't have real answers.

I'm not sure that is really correct either. Might they be saying that Theology does not have answers that can be tested using the scientific method?


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
This message is a reply to:
 Message 262 by nwr, posted 12-15-2010 12:11 PM nwr has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 16227
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 264 of 296 (596518)
12-15-2010 12:16 PM
Reply to: Message 261 by GDR
12-15-2010 11:47 AM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
The difference is that religion retreats into the gaps. Science advances toward the gaps.


"I'm Rory Bellows, I tell you! And I got a lot of corroborating evidence... over here... by the throttle!"
This message is a reply to:
 Message 261 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 11:47 AM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 267 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 3:28 PM ringo has acknowledged this reply

  
Omnivorous
Member (Idle past 1043 days)
Posts: 3808
From: Adirondackia
Joined: 07-21-2005


Message 265 of 296 (596547)
12-15-2010 2:41 PM
Reply to: Message 261 by GDR
12-15-2010 11:47 AM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
If I understand you correctly, you are saying that Otto made absolute claims for science--that it will ultimately fill in all the gaps in our understanding--thus asserting a science of the gaps argument: we have no need of theology because science either has or will answer all the big questions.

Is that correct?

As I noted in my prior post, I don't think that's what Otto means. Let's review your exchange on this.

quote:

GDR writes:

Obviously if someone had their theology 100% accurate and their science 100% accurate the two would be totally congruent.

Otto writes:

If someone had their science 100% accurate, they would have no need for theology -- indeed, the notion of "theology" would be nonexistent. As it is, with our science being imperfect and incomplete, theology is simply a side-show of undefinable terms and unverifiable claims.


First, note that the "if science were perfect" illustration of an argument came from you; Otto replied in the same mode, asserting that theology is as irrelevant now, with our imperfect science, as it would be if that science were perfected--something no scientist expects to happen.

The consequences for religion that he spells out in a world with either "perfect" science or "imperfect" science is the extent to which superstitious and supernatural beliefs might persist. Clearly, as science has offered better explanations for natural phenomena, supernatural explanations have retreated. Expecting this process to continue is not a "god of the gaps" argument.

So I'm still unclear as to what "god of the gaps" can mean as a logical or rhetorical fallacy. Seeking out gaps in our understanding of natural phenomena and laboring to fill them is the mission statement of science. Expecting scientific labor to be fruitful is reasonable based on past performance.

Science does fill gaps--gaps in understanding, gaps in nutrition, gaps in medical care: theology has never revolutionized our evidence-based understanding of the natural world, never filled an empty belly and never advanced new cures for the sick.

As you can see, I find the attempt to turn the "of the gaps" accusation against science repugnant, somehow making a liability of what science seeks to do and has done so spectacularly well.


I know there's a balance, I see it when I swing past.
-J. Mellencamp

Real things always push back.
-William James


This message is a reply to:
 Message 261 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 11:47 AM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 266 by GDR, posted 12-15-2010 3:26 PM Omnivorous has responded

    
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 266 of 296 (596552)
12-15-2010 3:26 PM
Reply to: Message 265 by Omnivorous
12-15-2010 2:41 PM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
Omnivorous writes:

As I noted in my prior post, I don't think that's what Otto means. Let's review your exchange on this.

Maybe, but when Otto says

quote:
If someone had their science 100% accurate, they would have no need for theology
I take from that an assumption that science given enough time, could conceivably provide all the answers. As science is a study of the natural world I conclude that Otto is suggesting that there is nothing beyond the material world.

The belief in a completely materialistic or natural world is as much a matter of faith as is my belief in something beyond the natural.

So when Otto makes the statement that there is a scientific answer for altruism, as an example, I see him as defaulting to a position of "science of the gaps". If I were to make an argument that science has been unable to make a definitive case for why we have the ability to behave altruistically therefore science has nothing to say about it and that it must be god or gods, then I would agree that I could be accused of a 'god of the gaps' argument. It works both ways.

Having said that I absolutely agree that science should go on searching for all the answers it ca. Personally I see science as a form of theology in that I think that we can learn about God by studying what I believe He has created, and if science finds a definitive way that the ability to behave altruistically I'll be the first to say well done.

Omnivorous writes:

Expecting scientific labor to be fruitful is reasonable based on past performance.

Science does fill gaps--gaps in understanding, gaps in nutrition, gaps in medical care: theology has never revolutionized our evidence-based understanding of the natural world, never filled an empty belly and never advanced new cures for the sick.

I agree that science has done in many cases a great job of those things. It is my belief though that the motivation to accomplish those things comes from more than just a strictly materialistic world.

Omnivorous writes:

As you can see, I find the attempt to turn the "of the gaps" accusation against science repugnant, somehow making a liability of what science seeks to do and has done so spectacularly well.

What I said was in no way an attack against science. It was strictly a comment on the legitimate beliefs of Otto.

I also think that science has done spectacularly well and frankly it has help shape what I believe theologically, including what I believe about eternal life.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 265 by Omnivorous, posted 12-15-2010 2:41 PM Omnivorous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 273 by Omnivorous, posted 12-15-2010 11:21 PM GDR has responded

    
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 267 of 296 (596553)
12-15-2010 3:28 PM
Reply to: Message 264 by ringo
12-15-2010 12:16 PM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
ringo writes:

The difference is that religion retreats into the gaps. Science advances toward the gaps.

Well put. I have no problem with that.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 264 by ringo, posted 12-15-2010 12:16 PM ringo has acknowledged this reply

    
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 268 of 296 (596555)
12-15-2010 3:35 PM
Reply to: Message 262 by nwr
12-15-2010 12:11 PM


Re: What is 'science of the gaps'?
nwr writes:

Scientists who say that they have no need for theology are mostly not saying that science has answers to all of the big questions.

I agree, but I interpreted Otto as saying that science if 100% complete would answer all the big questions.

nwr writes:

They are only saying that theology doesn't have answers - or at least doesn't have real answers.

I agree with jar. Theology has answers that in most cases can't be proven scientifically. The answers may be right or they may be wrong. Beliefs that are theological or philosophical are believed on a different basis than are things that are believed scientifically.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 262 by nwr, posted 12-15-2010 12:11 PM nwr has acknowledged this reply

    
Just being real
Member (Idle past 2011 days)
Posts: 369
Joined: 08-26-2010


Message 269 of 296 (596618)
12-15-2010 10:23 PM
Reply to: Message 257 by ringo
12-14-2010 11:15 AM


Often the memories of lost loves are the sweetest.

Yes that is true. I was only trying to focus more on the intensity of the relationship rather than the "tense" of past or present. Imagine the intensity of that love growing and blossoming more and more for an eternity.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 257 by ringo, posted 12-14-2010 11:15 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 275 by ringo, posted 12-16-2010 12:46 AM Just being real has not yet responded

    
Just being real
Member (Idle past 2011 days)
Posts: 369
Joined: 08-26-2010


Message 270 of 296 (596619)
12-15-2010 10:23 PM
Reply to: Message 258 by Modulous
12-14-2010 1:17 PM


Agreed. The thing I want to survive is my personality, my memories, my thoughts, beliefs, opinions and so on - do you agree?

Yes absolutely!! And that is what we are taught in the scriptures. We will have all of or memories from here. But the afflictions we endured now will pale like a candle to the sun in comparison to the glory we will experience then.

Then I see no reason to look forward to living a billion years, I will have expanded into something I don't recognize today. All the things that I want to survive will be more than ancient history, so why should I care if my soul happens to survive? I have mentally changed as well as physically - my personality, viewpoint etc has changed agreed? So who cares if the soul is the same, the soul is meaningless in this equation.

Well I think this is a really skewed point of view. It's like a baby in its mothers womb saying it doesn't want to be born and live for the next 70 years or so because it will have forgotten all about the warm comforts of its life in the womb it enjoyed for the last nine months. It neither has the mental ability nor developmental capacity to even comprehend what life outside the womb will be like.

Likewise now it is not revealed to us what we shall be like, but we know that when He appears we shall be like Him. And it has not even entered into the most wildest imaginations of man, what it shall be like when we are there. We know it shall be glorious beyond all comprehension.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 258 by Modulous, posted 12-14-2010 1:17 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 271 by jar, posted 12-15-2010 10:32 PM Just being real has not yet responded
 Message 272 by Coyote, posted 12-15-2010 10:42 PM Just being real has not yet responded
 Message 276 by Modulous, posted 12-16-2010 2:35 AM Just being real has not yet responded

    
RewPrev1
...
151617
18
1920Next
Newer Topic | Older Topic
Jump to:


Copyright 2001-2018 by EvC Forum, All Rights Reserved

™ Version 4.0 Beta
Innovative software from Qwixotic © 2019