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  Topic: No reason for a rift between science and religion?, Skeptic's chance to prove his claims.< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,09:19   

Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 01 2007,13:44)
Sorry, Louis, I don't have to do so because you're about to do it yourself.  Remind me at any point in your upcoming blundering that you do anything more than state opinion

WHERE??? Quote me! Prove your claim that ANYWHERE I make an argument of the form "X is true because I say so". Find just ONE instance of me doing this, anywhere at anytime.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,09:29   

blah ,blah, blah.  same old crap again.  I'm beginning to think that English is your second language, which would explain a lot.  Look up the word conflict.  Faith and reason are not necessarily in conflict.  When applied appropriately, faith and reason never cross paths because they don't even address the same questions and therefore NO CONFLICT.  It is only when YOU force Faith to be something it is not or Reason to be something it is not does conflict arise.  This is a FALSE conflict engineered by you, or whomever else forces this situation.  To be clear, many on both sides make this mistake but it is unnecessary.  Peaceful co-existence is an option, a very good option, it just requires people to take it without being ruled by their prejudices.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,09:31   

Quote (Louis @ Dec. 01 2007,09:19)
Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 01 2007,13:44)
Sorry, Louis, I don't have to do so because you're about to do it yourself.  Remind me at any point in your upcoming blundering that you do anything more than state opinion

WHERE??? Quote me! Prove your claim that ANYWHERE I make an argument of the form "X is true because I say so". Find just ONE instance of me doing this, anywhere at anytime.

Louis

Show me where you state anything other than an opinion?

  
Lou FCD



Posts: 5414
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,09:56   

Honestly, Skeptic.

You made the claim, you should at least be able to point to one instance.

If your objective is nothing more than to rile Louis up, then just knock it off.  It's quickly becoming annoying.

--------------
Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
I think I might love you. Don't tell Deadman -Wolfhound

Work-friendly photography
NSFW photography

   
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,10:16   

Skeptic,

See, erm, every one of my previous posts. Follow the chain of reasoning, follow the arguments, follow them back to the very real world evidence I've mentioned. Do you understand that I am not stating my opinion and fitting evidence to it (something you would do but have failed to manage EVEN this!), but that I fit my opinion to the evidence? Do you not even see the distinction?

I've explained precisely what the nature of the epistemological conflict is. I've explained why it exists, on what basis. I've explained it in very simple terms I'd expect a reasonably bright high school student to comprehend. AND YET! You simply do not engage it at all in any sense, you hand wave it away totally. How is that honest behaviour from you? Like I said do you want references? Will that keep you happy?

Fine, just picking the books I've read that support the epistemological conflict between reason and faith on the bottom two shelves of the philosophy, history, religion and humanities bookcase in my home office, and that have some relevance to the topics discussed previously:

Hegel: The Science of Logic, The Philosophy of History,

Benedictus de Spinoza: The Complete Works (I was too lazy to buy all the books individually)

Andrew Dickson Wright: History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom: v. 1, Pt. 1  and Pt II.

A C Grayling: Against All Gods, The Form of Things

Paul Boghossian: Fear of Knowledge

Rudolf Carnap and R.A. George (Translator): The Logical Structure of the World and Pseudoproblems in Philosophy

Daniel Dennett: Sweet Dreams: Philosophical Obstacles to a Science of Consciousness, Breaking the Spell, Darwin's Dangerous Idea, Consciousness Explained, Freedom Evolves

Thomas Kuhn: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

Peter Gay: The Enlightenment vols 1 and 2

Norman Hampson: The Enlightenment

Roy Porter: Enlightenment

Charles Freeman: The Closing of the Western Mind

Immanuel Kant: A Critique of Practical Reason, A Critique of Pure Reason

Douglas Hofstadter: Godel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid.

David Hume: An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals, A Treatise of Human Nature, On Suicide

Frederick Nietsche: Human, All Too Human, The Gay Science, Beyond Good and Evil, Thus Spake Zarathustra, The Antichrist

Albert Camus: The Myth of Sisyphus

Bertrand Russell: Sceptical Essays, Why I Am Not A Christian and Other Essays, Religion and Science, The Problems of Philosophy, The History of Western Philosophy

James Rachels: The Elements of Moral Philosophy (With a Dictionary of Philosophical Terms....VERY USEFUL!!!)

John Cottingham: Western Philosophy: An Anthology

George Smith: Atheism, the Case Against God

H Mackie: The Miracle of Theism

St Thomas Aquinas: Summa Theologica, Selected Writings (admittedly I've only read the first three and a half volumes out of five. I started to get bored)

St Augustine: The Confessions

Various: The Bible (King James Translation), The Qu'Ran, The Guru Granth Sahib.... ok that's enough

Ok that's nearly the whole bottom of that bookcase! I'm not even mentioning the hoardes of popular science books by people like Dawkins, Gould etc, or the books on the philosophy of biology for example or on consilience or just about atheism or scepticism. Believe me when I say that these books are JUST THE BEGINNING. I'm aware of how limited my knowledge of these topics is. Nor do I claim to agree with every facet or claim or argument of every book. All I am saying is that every one of them acknowledges the epistemological conflict between faith and reason and at the most basic level the context based explanation I have given for the types of questions asked earlier in the thread. The majority of these books and philosophers etc SUPPORT my view, or rather I should say that my views are based on the majority of those books because THAT is the way around it happens. What do you want next? Lists of sociological studies I've read demonstrating the relativist nature of morals? Lists of other books demonstrating the failure of faith as an epistemological method? Is it still possible that you DON'T Understand the distinction I have been making since the first post.

Handwaving an argument away and not dealing with it is not discussion or debate Skeptic. Do you understand that very simple thing? When will you learn to read?

Again Skeptic, for the love of all that is wonderous in the universe: try restating my arguments to my satisfaction. Just try. I guarantee you that understanding will flow. Note: I don't say agreement, I say understanding. Try it. You might be amazed.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,10:25   

Quote (Lou FCD @ Dec. 01 2007,15:56)
Honestly, Skeptic.

You made the claim, you should at least be able to point to one instance.

If your objective is nothing more than to rile Louis up, then just knock it off.  It's quickly becoming annoying.

Lou,

Skeptic is and clearly has been trolling for a while. He is not in ANY WAY engaging in a debate or discussion. He has singularly and completely failed to support even ONE of his claims in any way and equally singularly and completely failed to engage any argument put to him by anyone.

His asinine assumptions of hostility are more than evident, never so clearly as in this latest "bullet" episode of his manufacture. He DEMONSTRABLY is a pig ignorant, dishonest, concern troll and wind up merchant. Why the fuck he is tolerated at all by anyone is beyond me.

Granted, I am not the most polite fucker on the planet by any means. A charge I openly and frequently hold my hands up to at any opportunity. But at least I try, and try very very hard, to engender a reasoned discourse with people I disagree with. My frustration stems ONLY from dealing with people like Skeptic who refuse to engage in that discourse honestly, fairly and with the same modicum of intellectual rigour and humility I would expect from anyone.

Why even these very, very basic aspects of rational discourse are deemed so difficult as to be unrequired as a condition of being able to post here is beyond me. Why people like Skeptic are tolerated beyond the point where it is undeniably demonstrated that their sole purpose is to annoy is equally beyond me. Banning dishonest, disruptive morons because they are dishonest, disruptive morons is not equitable with UD banning people for simply dissenting. There is a categorical difference between banning someone because you don't like what they say (despicable) and banning someone because they contribute nothing positive and cannot even begin to support the simplest and most basic of claims or argue in a coherent, honest fashion. I'm reminded of something I reads in the Lipstadt book recently: Freedom of Speech does not equate to providing a platform for that speech.

Louis

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Bye.

  
Reciprocating Bill



Posts: 4265
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,10:34   

Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 01 2007,10:29)
Faith and reason are not necessarily in conflict.  When applied appropriately, faith and reason never cross paths because they don't even address the same questions and therefore NO CONFLICT.

There's the rub.

For the sake of discussion, I'll stipulate your assertion, with the emphasis upon the bolded proviso. We can then conclude that when conflict IS evident between the claims of faith and the claims of reason/science, that either faith, reason, or both have been misapplied.

Way upthread I offered the example of agentic souls. Although you don't personally conceptualize soul in this way, many Christians, as well as adherents of other faiths, do integrate agentic souls into their picture of morality and its consequences. There is no question that agentic souls, to the extent that they are the wellspring of actions, DO enter into a domain claimed (at least in principle) by neuroscience, cognitive science, psychology, etc.

Similarly, ID (when honestly presented) makes claims in that conflict with the natural sciences, and advocates modes of reasoning that conflict with those employed by the natural sciences for the purpose of admitting a supernatural designer into the picture. 

In these instances, in which conflict is clearly evident, which is inappropriately applied? In what way was it inappropriately applied?

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Here’s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

  
BWE



Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,12:23   

OK, I'm at page 25.

Skeptic: Thick
Louis: Angry

I'm getting to the really good part.

Louis, I see you've answered my earlier post already so, unless you want to drill down a bit and critique that woo link I posted, or unless you've modified your reasonnong, I'm good with that.

Damn, this is a good thread.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,12:31   

Quote (BWE @ Dec. 01 2007,18:23)
OK, I'm at page 25.

Skeptic: Thick
Louis: Angry

I'm getting to the really good part.

Louis, I see you've answered my earlier post already so, unless you want to drill down a bit and critique that woo link I posted, or unless you've modified your reasonnong, I'm good with that.

Damn, this is a good thread.

LOL

No wait...

ROFLMAO

Louis: Angry.

Yup that about sums up slightly too many aspects of my life for comfort!

The rest: erm woo link? I must have missed it. Sorry, I was at the gym earlier (as explained) and I've got a game tomorrow, that always makes me a little more {ahem} "pumped" than perhaps I should be. And no I don't take 'roids. That would be very very bad.

Louis

P.S. Added in edit:  Good thread? Not for me. We didn't even get past the starting gate as far as I'm concerned. This thread (apart from a very few highlights provided by Bill and others) has yet to get beyond "Intro to Basic Philosophy 101".

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Bye.

  
BWE



Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,12:54   

Quote (skeptic @ Sep. 01 2007,21:02)
faith can be used as a means to acquire knowledge if tenets for the faith are extrapolated to address new questions.  Abortion is not addressed as such in the Bible but an understanding of the murder concept allows abortion to be addressed.  New knowledge is thus gained using faith alone.

See, it's stuff like this. I think it's simply blinkers that keep out the outside world. I don't think you mean the implied parts of your words Skeptic. You are a bit thick here. Subjective knowledge and objective knowledg are substantially different things and do not inform our actions the same way. Our knowledge of gravity informs our actions in a much different way than does our knowledge of love.

Thanks.

BWE

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
BWE



Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,13:02   

Quote (BWE @ Nov. 30 2007,21:30)
Right there. You went off track right there. It offers subjective knowledge but not objective knowledge. It is in and of itself a subjective piece of knowledge. In other words, once you define the terms enough to quantify it, it becomes testable and thus would create conflict between science and religion.

Here's a link to some good woo on the subject.

Not that I endorse the views of the author(s) but it talks about subjective/objective reasonably well in a kind of western way.

Here's my woo link.

BTW, Immanuel Kant: A Critique of Practical Reason, A Critique of Pure Reason- Did you read that in German or were you flogged by your ethics professor until you could understand the English translation? For me it was the second. I'm glad I read it but I will probably never open it again.

OTOH, a lot of other authors reference Kant so I probably would never have to.

Added in Edit: It's a good thread for me because I love brawling. Also because Bill, erasmus and stephen elliot (and others, that just happens to be where i am at the moment) dug down deep for some exceptional additions and running commentary.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
BWE



Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,13:07   

Quote (Louis @ Dec. 01 2007,12:31)
And no I don't take 'roids. That would be very very bad.

I can't believe no one took the bait here. It was masterfully baited Louis. It was us who were too thick rather than any reflection on your baiting technique.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,13:09   

Quote (BWE @ Dec. 01 2007,19:07)
Quote (Louis @ Dec. 01 2007,12:31)
And no I don't take 'roids. That would be very very bad.

I can't believe no one took the bait here. It was masterfully baited Louis. It was us who were too thick rather than any reflection on your baiting technique.

It wasn't bait per se. It was merely an opportunity to explore some humourous asides.

You lot too thick? Doubtful. Very doubtful. Very, very doubtful. With some exceptions.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,14:05   

I haz come to decision. Don't get mad, get LOLcats.

Until Skeptic decides to deal with arguments in a rational manner I shall mock him via the medium of the LOLCat.



Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,15:16   

Quote (Louis @ Dec. 01 2007,09:19)
 
Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 01 2007,13:44)
Sorry, Louis, I don't have to do so because you're about to do it yourself.  Remind me at any point in your upcoming blundering that you do anything more than state opinion

WHERE??? Quote me! Prove your claim that ANYWHERE I make an argument of the form "X is true because I say so". Find just ONE instance of me doing this, anywhere at anytime.

Louis

Sticking pins in my eyes might be less painfull than reading skeptics posts.

A good example about believing that religious thinking is a bad idea can be seen in the teacher mallarky in Sudan. Reality, reason, evidence does not matter with those lunatics. Despite all the evidence they want to kill her anyway.

Skeptic is not much different. Argue all you want. Show all the evidence you have. Skeptic will still say it is only your opinion and his* opinion is just as valid despite not providing any evidence for his* claims.


*Gender is just a guess.

  
BWE



Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,15:53   

Apparently there is a rift between science and religion.
see this thread.

Where I wrote:
Quote
So, that all said, my perspective on whether you can have an intellectually honest christian/muslim/pagan/hindu/whatever depends on their take on the belief. If they believe the stories in theor books then I have to say no, you can't. Have you ever heard the old saying, "give us the child till he's 7 and we'll give you the man"? It's a catholic school saying. I say give the books to a reasonably bright kid and let him read them before you talk about it and you get someone who has been innoculated against the evolutionarily advantagous trait of our species to use hate and fear to galvanize small bands of semi helpless animals together to fight the competitors for whatever niche or child labor force they happen to be exploiting. I have never gotten over my shock when I learned that a girl I wanted to , er, take to the movies or a malt shop, was xian. Really xian! She actually believed! In all outward ways she appeared normal. In fact in some areas, she was above average. But scratch the surface and bizzarro world lay out before you. She offered to take me to her church but i never went. The first time I ever attended a church was with my wife. She dragged me. Insisted. I might have been 25 or so? It turned out to be evangelical and the pastors very first words were "No amount of good deeds could have saved Ghandi from ####."

My suspicions were confirmed and so far, it's 100%. Those who appear normal yet profess faith, it's a code word. It means something on the continuum between "I Like to hang out with other people and do things in my community" and I" like this stuff. What did you say it was again?"

And I think I was right.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,16:24   

Louis, I have to assume that you're just not that smart.  You've proven that you can cut an paste but have you ever read any of those books?  If you have then you should know that they are loaded with opinion, in fact, what is philosophy but opinion.  Making a valid argument does not constitute evidence.  Group think does not constitute evidence.  Providing others opinions agreeing or disagreeing with yours still does not constitute evidence.  The answers to these questions are not found in formulas, in statistics, through chemical analysis, etc.  Two people are not certain to get the same answer by asking it the same way.  Your denial is telling here but it is also exhausting.  Go find someone else to argue with about faith and reason cause I'm really not sure that you understand either.

Bill, I think the conflict arise from both ignorance and a need to categorize everything.  In the question of the soul, if it exists, we're dealing with something beyond our ability to describe at this time or maybe ever.  We may simply lack the ability to access the soul.  The need to force a definition of it's nature in terms we can understand is the problem.  From a theological standpoint, the so-called physical component of the soul has no impact.  The important aspects of the soul are all transcendent and are meant to teach the individual.  There is no requirement of an understanding of the soul's relation to physical reality in order to learn those lessons.

BWE, the two types of knowledge are different, true.  I would never dispute that.  What I am saying is there is no reason to make this distinction because that is the nature of this whole discussion.  Faith and Reason, Objective and Subjective...same topic.

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,16:32   

Well there is a rift between orthodox religion and science. Religion once served as a method to explain the world around them. It's not that wierd that 2 millenia ago the most logical answer to lots of answers was a supreme being. People just couldn't imagine anything else. Only recently we're been exploring other options with reason and no longer with emotion. That way of thinking is pretty young, only about 2 century's. But the other way, the emotional or religious way is as old as mankind. No wonder there is conflict, the emotional way is totally baked into our society. People generally don't like change, don't like uncertanty's. Religious explanations offer security because they're so old and thus lots of people are emotionally bonded to those explanations.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,16:45   

Skeptic you are no longer Sophist, Obliviot, or anything else.

You are now Solipcist.

How do you even know that you are really here posting on this board?  Perhaps I dreamed you up?  Perhaps you dreamed me up?  What is the criterion for distinguishing between the two?  What if that criterion conflicts with my faith?  What then should I do?

I know you really don't believe this bullshit.

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,17:10   

Quote (Assassinator @ Dec. 01 2007,16:32)
Well there is a rift between orthodox religion and science. Religion once served as a method to explain the world around them. It's not that wierd that 2 millenia ago the most logical answer to lots of answers was a supreme being. People just couldn't imagine anything else. Only recently we're been exploring other options with reason and no longer with emotion. That way of thinking is pretty young, only about 2 century's. But the other way, the emotional or religious way is as old as mankind. No wonder there is conflict, the emotional way is totally baked into our society. People generally don't like change, don't like uncertanty's. Religious explanations offer security because they're so old and thus lots of people are emotionally bonded to those explanations.

Yes, religion is a completely different matter and from what I see it is purposefully conflicting with science but the opposite is also true.  I will not defend either one in this case.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,17:13   

Quote (Erasmus, FCD @ Dec. 01 2007,16:45)
Skeptic you are no longer Sophist, Obliviot, or anything else.

You are now Solipcist.

How do you even know that you are really here posting on this board?  Perhaps I dreamed you up?  Perhaps you dreamed me up?  What is the criterion for distinguishing between the two?  What if that criterion conflicts with my faith?  What then should I do?

I know you really don't believe this bullshit.

No, there is no solution to the Absolute Skeptic argument so you have to make some primary assumptions and go with them.  Funny thing is, you make those assumptions on nothing more than faith and proceed with your understanding of the Universe from there.  How ironic.

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,17:22   

Skeptic squeaked


Quote
Funny thing is, you make those assumptions on nothing more than faithprior experience and proceed with your understanding of the Universe from there.  How ironic.


There fixed that for you.  You're welcome.

You could call it a Bayesian approach.  Or not.

--------------
You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Assassinator



Posts: 479
Joined: Nov. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,17:25   

The opposite? How? Science is about learning, is about progress. It's just a tool to find out more about the world around us.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,18:52   

Quote (Erasmus, FCD @ Dec. 01 2007,17:22)
Skeptic squeaked


 
Quote
Funny thing is, you make those assumptions on nothing more than faithprior experience and proceed with your understanding of the Universe from there.  How ironic.


There fixed that for you.  You're welcome.

You could call it a Bayesian approach.  Or not.

no, actually, to resolve the Absolute Skeptic there is no prior experience.  You have to define reality within personal experience, not prior experience, and that is nothing but subjective.  It requires faith in something or a whole heap of denial.

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,18:54   

Quote (Assassinator @ Dec. 01 2007,17:25)
The opposite? How? Science is about learning, is about progress. It's just a tool to find out more about the world around us.

How about the science community then?  I'm referring to the obvious, Dawkins, Harris, Hitchens, etc.  The purposeful extension of science outside of it's scope into an area where it has no relevance.  Same MO as religion intruding into science.

  
swbarnes2



Posts: 78
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 01 2007,19:13   

[quote=skeptic,Dec. 01 2007,09:29]
 
Quote
Faith and reason are not necessarily in conflict.  When applied appropriately, faith and reason never cross paths because they don't even address the same questions and therefore NO CONFLICT.


Sure, I'll buy that.

Science deals with reality, faith deals with non-reality.  

As long as faith says on its side of the fence, everything's fine.  

Science is actually quite good at staying on the reality side of the fence.  It has to, because all the data's on this side.

But can the faith supporters stay on their side?  Stick to hammering out if grace is a gift given to all, or just some?  Or whether one is saved without works?  

Or will they ignore science, and push their faith when they find the science distasteful?

What do you think the last 100 years of Creationism demonstrates to be the answer to that question?

  
skeptic



Posts: 1163
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 02 2007,01:54   

what is and what could be are two different things but as I pointed out there's plenty of blame to go around.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 02 2007,04:02   

Skeptic,

So your answer to my providing you with references is to be bloody rude and undeservingly patronsing yet again. Interesting. Like I said, what do you want as evidence? The relevant sociological studies demonstrating the relativist nature of morals? The logicial and philosophical demonstrations that Platonic essences such as "perfect love" etc are simply fallacious? It's all in those (and other) books and publications. Why do I need to cut and paste a list of books? It's a pretty eclectic list Skeptic, one that has evolved rather than been designed. Ask a philsophy prof if they'd start at those specific books and I'd guarantee you they'd come up with a different list. Anyway your accusation of "group think" is HILARIOUS! Any list that includes the bible and George Smith's "Atheism: The Case Against God" is not an homogenous list! I'm too stupid? Erm manifestly not, Skeptic! Rather the stupid is being exded by someone who cannot even read a simple list of book titles for basic comprehension!

Incidentally, there's a little more to philsophy than opinion. Things like propositional logic, the coherence of an argument (i.e. does one thing flow from another etc), small insignificant things like these. It really is hilarious to be accused of a) not reading books I own and have read, and being stupid by someone who clearly demonstrates his own ignorance and stupidity with every post. If you'd bother to go back and read any of the posts I've written Skeptic you'd understand the distinctions I've been making, as it is, you make the same errors and erroneous assertions you did at the start of the thread and frankly, you look a fool for doing so. So in this vein, I have a question: Is pure mathematics just opinion, Skeptic?

That aside. Your example (The one BWE quotes from Sep 01) about faith generating new knowledge is bullshit yet again:

Quote
faith can be used as a means to acquire knowledge if tenets for the faith are extrapolated to address new questions.  Abortion is not addressed as such in the Bible but an understanding of the murder concept allows abortion to be addressed.  New knowledge is thus gained using faith alone.


Explain how this is different from a lawyer reading a law text about current statutes on murder and deriving new legislation from it for abortion (in the case of this example abortion is a hitherto unlegislated for phenomenon). The point is you are describing a REASONED process. As of course you'll know having completely read and understood my arguments, there is a distinction I've been making since post one that might be relevant here.

An example might help you. I was once sat in one of the regular chemistry symposia I go to and a young chap was speaking about this new cyclisation reaction he'd developed (I'm sorry I forget his name and my notes are at work). He claimed, very quietly since Jack Baldwin was sat in the front row, that this cyclisation proceeded by a proposed mechanism that violated Balwin's rules (if you don't know what Baldwin's rules are, look them up). At the end of the talk, dear old Sir Jack (who if you know anything about him is a bluff cove of the first water. And that's an understatement) shot up out of his chair and proceeded to write a very complex mechanism on the blackboard by which this new cyclisation reaction could go, containing several ring opening and ring closing processes all allowed by Baldwin's rules. Now there are of course a variety of spectroscopic and kinetic methods by which one could determine which of these mechanisms (if it was either of them) operates during that reaction, but at the time (and to date AFAIK, I'd have to check) none of this work had been done. The point is very simple: you are making a mechanistic claim analogous to the one this young chap did, i.e. that you have a reaction with a mechanism that violates known principles or uses new ones. This may well be the case but it falls to you to demonstrate this by whatever means you can (bearing in mind the caveat that one can never truly PROVE a mechanism of a reaction, one can only eliminate alternatives). Baldwin's point was that there was no need, in that initial phase where no mechanistic data was forthcoming, to claim a novel mechanism which violated known chemical behaviour. The same applies to your example of "faith". We know the reason based mechanisms that people use to develop moral precepts and legal matters (to name but two examples), if you are claiming a familiar looking process is genuinely novel then that is a claim that falls to you to support in some manner. Hence why I asked the question I did. Granted, it might be the case that you HAVE discovered a new mechanism, BUT simply asserting you have when that mechanism is so familiar is insufficient, the scales of evidence are not weighed in your favour, it's not a level paying field. On the one hand we have a huge quantity of empirical, philosphical and logical data supporting a particular type of mechanism (or a limited set of mechanisms) for phenomena like the one you describe (but not exactly the same), and on the other hand you have nothing but your assertion that it is not going to fall into that known category. You need to provide data to support that claim. Something you can easily do if you have it. Something I KNOW you're going to obfuscate and weasel out of because you and I KNOW you don't have it. Forgive me is, as usual, I have no hope that you will see this distinction.

As for your "you base those assumptions on faith" charge, this as usual is purest bullshit, yet again! Hooray! Do you know what, I'm not going to bother expaining why, I've already done it if you'd bothered to read, I'll let the Wilkins do it, he does it better than I do. The principle is contained within:

Quote
Physicists on science
Category: Logic and philosophy • Philosophy of Science • Sermon
Posted on: November 25, 2007 5:00 AM, by John S. Wilkins

I have a rule (Wilkins' Law #35, I think) that if any scientist is going to draw unwarranted metaphysical conclusions, it will be a physicist, and in particular a cosmologist. Witness Paul Davies in the New York Times.

Davies wants to argue something like this:

Premise: there are laws of the universe and we cannot explain the existence of laws
Premise: the assumption that laws are to be found is the basis for doing science
Conclusion: Ergo, science rests on an act of faith

Can anyone spot the enthymeme? That's very good, children. You spotted the easy mistake. Davies moves from "assume that there are laws" to "make an act of faith", as a number of the advanced students in other classes did. Assumptions are not acts of faith, they are the starting point for an act of reasoning. Well done.

But did you spot the difficult mistake? Anyone? Bueller?

OK, let me take you through it.

Suppose I say something like this - "Fido is a black Labrador". I describe and name Fido for you. Is it an assumption that names exist in the physical world? Descriptions? Does the act of naming Fido mean that we must now explain the essence of Fidoness? Or, for that matter Labradority? Of course not. To say that would be to confuse the name or description with the thing named or described. This is what Alfred North Whitehead once called the "fallacy of misplaced concreteness", also known as the Fallacy of Reification (by me, anyway). Take words and declare them properties of the universe.

Now, what does Davies say? He says "there are laws of the universe" that rely on a belief in the rationality of the universe. But like Fido, the universe just is - it has a structure (which is what extreme physics tries to explain). We describe this structure in terms of laws. Sure, we assume that the universe has a structure, for without that assumption we cannot gather knowledge (imagine if the sun rose when it felt like it, or pigs flew), but the description of laws is just a provisional summary of what we now know. Just as there is no Fidoness other than the dog standing in front of you, there is no "lawfulness" out there in the universe, just a structured world. We find out that structure, but we no more need to make an act of faith to do this than we need to believe that 1 plus 1 will equal 2; it is a necessary presumption in order for the business of science to get going, but it is most definitely not a metaphysical foundation.

That's not to say you couldn't make it a metaphysical foundation if you liked, and clearly Davies likes, but it need not be. To say other wise is to confuse the knowledge with the thing known (or, in philosophese, epistemology for ontology).

It's a common mistake made by scientists (and more than a few philosophers and others). I find it in taxonomy, where people argue over the "reality" of a taxon when they are in fact discussing the warrantability of a diagnosis of a taxon. But nullius in verba as the motto of the Royal Society has it. Nothing in words Take no one's word. As Maynard Smith used to say to lunchers in his cafeteria, "Are you discussing words, or the world? If it is the world, I will stay, but if it is words, I will go".

Let us go, and leave the confused physicist to his own meanderings.


From here

Like I have said tirelessly since almost the first page of this thread, if, Skeptic, you'd bothered to read what I've written for some basic modicum of understanding you wouldn't keep erecting strawmen like the one in your post on "blue feels cold", nor would you keep assuming some asinine hostility to faith etc, nor would you be able to honestly and continually restate the same drivle as if it weren't already shown to be logically fallacious wishful thinking and blind assertion on your part.

Oh and when are you going to get around to justify your claim that I have made any argument based just on my say so? The longer you leave it Skeptic, the more people will know you to be a demonstrated liar and charlatan.

Louis

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Bye.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 02 2007,04:16   

Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 01 2007,22:24)
The answers to these questions are not found in formulas, in statistics, through chemical analysis, etc.  Two people are not certain to get the same answer by asking it the same way.  Your denial is telling here but it is also exhausting.  Go find someone else to argue with about faith and reason cause I'm really not sure that you understand either.

1) You do know that in previous posts I have explained PRECISELY this problem and shown what it's limits etc are? No? Oh would that be because you have neither read nor comprehended even the most basic aspects of my arguments since post one. Please do so. What is exhausting is to have to explain the same thing to you a half dozen or so times and have you IGNORE it. I'd be happy if you refuted it, or showed me where the holes in it are. In fact I'd be over the moon. But you don't do this. You handwave it away, just like you do with everyone else's arguments, and simply reassert your original, unsupported claims. Do you understand why that is frustrating? Do you understand why that is not reasoned discourse? Do you understand why nothing you have done demonstrates you claims? Do you understand why no one disagrees with me when I say that I have demonstrated my case?

2) Denial? Of what? What have I denied? Quote any post of phrase that demonstrates I am denying anything at all. Provide an explanantion of why the quote(s) you find are denial. PLEASE!

3) I will, AGAIN, offer you the hand of reasonable discourse Skeptic. Bury the hatchet, restate my arguments to my satisfaction, I'll do the same for yours. Start justifying your claims by more than assertion (as you will see when you read my posts that I have taken pains to do for mine), try to find the area of common ground and work from there. I am exceptionally willing to do this. I cannot do it alone.

4) Provide a quote which demonstrates I am making an argument by assertion, provide an explanantion demonstrating this. I ask this because you are alone in thinking I have done this. Not one single other person who has read this thread thinks I have done this. Not me, not Bill, not even Lenny did. Not a single person but you Skeptic. And it's not because they agree with me.

Skeptic, all I have ever tried to do is to get you to do the very basic things that would actually turn this into a discussion. You cannot have a discussion with someone if they refuse to engage what you've actually said. Come on Skeptic, raise the bar.

Louis

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Bye.

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 02 2007,04:38   

Oh yeah and whilst I think of it I want this little gem front and centre.

When I provided a list of books I have read and I own from just two shelves of a specific bookcase, all of which deal with the issue of the epistemological conflict between reason and faith in some manner and all of which acknolwedge its existence, some even explaining it, some not, Skeptic's reponse was simply to hand wave that away.

When I have tried very hard to explain an argument or the flaws in another argument etc, Skeptic's repsonse has always been to hand wave it away.

Don't those simple, undeniable facts speak volumes?

Louis

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Bye.

  
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