homepage
  roll on christmas  
click here to find out more about ship of fools click here to sign up for the ship of fools newsletter click here to support ship of fools
community the mystery worshipper gadgets for god caption competition foolishness features ship stuff
discussion boards live chat cafe avatars frequently-asked questions the ten commandments gallery private boards register for the boards
 
Ship of Fools


Post new thread  Post a reply
My profile login | | Directory | Search | FAQs | Board home
   - Printer-friendly view Next oldest thread   Next newest thread
» Ship of Fools   »   » Oblivion   » Scientism: Why all hot and bothered about it? (Page 7)

 - Email this page to a friend or enemy.  
Pages in this thread: 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11 
 
Source: (consider it) Thread: Scientism: Why all hot and bothered about it?
Evensong
Shipmate
# 14696

 - Posted      Profile for Evensong   Author's homepage   Email Evensong   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
quote:
Originally posted by Evensong:
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
But many atheists are agnostic about God.

That's an oxymoron too
The trouble is, you're now defining other people's ideas for them. It's a bit like an atheist saying that you believe in a zombie on a stick.

I know plenty of atheists who define their atheism as not having a belief in God; but they don't know that there is no God. Hence 'agnostic atheist' is an accurate reflection of their views.

People are quite welcome to make up whatever they think a word means. But we do have dictionaries for a reason.

Atheism and Agnosticism are most definitely two different things.

[ 09. October 2014, 13:40: Message edited by: Evensong ]

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

Posts: 9481 | From: Australia | Registered: Apr 2009  |  IP: Logged
Evensong
Shipmate
# 14696

 - Posted      Profile for Evensong   Author's homepage   Email Evensong   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Gwai:
quote:
Originally posted by Evensong:
Ain't the point. She's dishonest.

Evensong, you know that comment on people's characters does not belong in Purgatory. Don't do it.

Gwai,
Purgatory Host

Was kicking myself shortly afterwards. Sorry......moment of weakness. [Hot and Hormonal]

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

Posts: 9481 | From: Australia | Registered: Apr 2009  |  IP: Logged
Crœsos
Shipmate
# 238

 - Posted      Profile for Crœsos     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Evensong:
Atheism and Agnosticism are most definitely two different things.

Well yeah. The former is about content of belief, the latter is about certainty of belief. They're not necessarily mutually contradictory.

--------------------
Humani nil a me alienum puto

Posts: 10706 | From: Sardis, Lydia | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Golden Key
Shipmate
# 1468

 - Posted      Profile for Golden Key   Author's homepage     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Evensong:
Ain't the point. She's dishonest.

I disagree. She's honestly arguing what she believes. She's been consistent over the years, and expresses herself well. I always look forward to her posts.

Susan and I disagree on a great deal--though I suspect that if we had a long, lazy lunch together, we'd find we agree more than we disagree. (We already agree on 42 and the H2G2 books--and that covers all that's really important. [Biased] )

--------------------
Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?" (Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon")
--"Oh, Peace Train, save this country!" (Yusuf/Cat Stevens, "Peace Train")

Posts: 18601 | From: Chilling out in an undisclosed, sincere pumpkin patch. | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
Evensong wrote:

People are quite welcome to make up whatever they think a word means. But we do have dictionaries for a reason.

Dictionaries record usage. As usage changes, so do dictionary entries.

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
mousethief

Ship's Thieving Rodent
# 953

 - Posted      Profile for mousethief     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Golden Key:
Susan and I disagree on a great deal--though I suspect that if we had a long, lazy lunch together, we'd find we agree more than we disagree. (We already agree on 42 and the H2G2 books--and that covers all that's really important. [Biased] )

Philistines. LotR is importanter.

--------------------
This is the last sig I'll ever write for you...

Posts: 63536 | From: Washington | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
LeRoc

Famous Dutch pirate
# 3216

 - Posted      Profile for LeRoc     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
I wonder if the scientific method can help us decide which series is the most important?

--------------------
I know why God made the rhinoceros, it's because He couldn't see the rhinoceros, so He made the rhinoceros to be able to see it. (Clarice Lispector)

Posts: 9474 | From: Brazil / Africa | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Net Spinster
Shipmate
# 16058

 - Posted      Profile for Net Spinster   Email Net Spinster   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by LeRoc:
I wonder if the scientific method can help us decide which series is the most important?

Depends on how you define 'important'. One could do surveys to figure out which is better known or how widespread quotes (and misquotes) from each are (and repeat in a hundred years time). However if by important one means how it is weighed by an ineffable ground of being (i.e., which author god is going to have a longer discussion with over a fine dinner), science can't determine that.

--------------------
spinner of webs

Posts: 1093 | From: San Francisco Bay area | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged
SusanDoris

Incurable Optimist
# 12618

 - Posted      Profile for SusanDoris   Author's homepage   Email SusanDoris   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
I can see I have quite a bit of thinking to do!

EvensongAbsolutely no need to kick self! [Smile]

Golden KeyThank you! I think a room full of all the people on this thread would be talking away nineteen to the dozen and thoroughly enjoying every minute, whether agreeing or not!

Back later. I'll try to avoid the oxymorons!

--------------------
I know that you believe that you understood what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

Posts: 3083 | From: UK | Registered: May 2007  |  IP: Logged
LeRoc

Famous Dutch pirate
# 3216

 - Posted      Profile for LeRoc     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
SusanDoris: talking away nineteen to the dozen
I didn't know this expression. Thank you.

--------------------
I know why God made the rhinoceros, it's because He couldn't see the rhinoceros, so He made the rhinoceros to be able to see it. (Clarice Lispector)

Posts: 9474 | From: Brazil / Africa | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
19, 000 gallons of water pumped out for every 12 bushels of coal, by beam engines. Well, it could be true.

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
itsarumdo
Shipmate
# 18174

 - Posted      Profile for itsarumdo     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
19, 000 gallons of water pumped out for every 12 bushels of coal, by beam engines. Well, it could be true.

sounds quite likely - the steam engines of that time were like our apollo missions

sixes and sevens comes originally from the tallying of the sun and moon in an early medieval calculation of the moons nodes. The sun moves once every 6 1/2 days relative to the moon, so that's a 6 day wait and then a seven day wait. The year was split into 56 divisions, one for each day of 13 degrees lunar motion

--------------------
"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

Posts: 994 | From: Planet Zog | Registered: Jul 2014  |  IP: Logged
SusanDoris

Incurable Optimist
# 12618

 - Posted      Profile for SusanDoris   Author's homepage   Email SusanDoris   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
Posted accidentally, so deleted until I've got it right ... well as near right as I can!

[ 09. October 2014, 19:07: Message edited by: SusanDoris ]

--------------------
I know that you believe that you understood what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

Posts: 3083 | From: UK | Registered: May 2007  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
Evensong wrote:

People are quite welcome to make up whatever they think a word means. But we do have dictionaries for a reason.

Dictionaries record usage. As usage changes, so do dictionary entries.

What does the dictionary currently say "atheist" means, then?

EDIT: And I'm well aware we've already had a version of this conversation in Hell.

[ 09. October 2014, 23:45: Message edited by: orfeo ]

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
Dark Knight

Super Zero
# 9415

 - Posted      Profile for Dark Knight   Email Dark Knight   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
Some things cannot be established and investigated using science.

I think there's some confusion here about what "established and investigated" means.

Take pain, for instance. We know that it's basically the response of nerve cells to damage sustained by the body. That's the scientific explanation for it, but that explanation doesn't get to the heart of what it actually feels like to the one sustaining the damage - and it certainly doesn't provide any insight into what we should do to minimise pain for ourselves or others.

BUT - the fact that the scientific answer doesn't do those things doesn't mean there's anything actually happening other than what the scientific explanation describes.

Yes, it does. It means exactly that. This is the materialist position, writ large. I don't accept it. It is a statement of faith.
quote:

It's like how you can describe a game of football as two teams of 11 people trying to kick a ball into a net for 90 minutes. That explanation doesn't get anywhere near to describing what it's like to play in a game of football, but that doesn't mean there's actually something happening other than two teams of 11 people trying to kick a ball into a net for 90 minutes.

Again, yes it really does. The problem is with your use of "actually." The materialist or reductionist position suggests that, whatever we think or feel about a phenomenon, what is actually going on is what is happening at the molecular level, or the scientifically verifiable level. This is not the case, at all. And you don't just get to assume it is.
What is actually going on in a football game is ... well, people have written books, made films, sung fucking songs about it. I'm not trying to be romantic about this (I've been accused of that before, I guess as accusations go its kinda flattering. Moving on ...). To presume that what is actually going on is what can be stated in empirical or scientific terms is exactly the problem here.
quote:

Basically, something happens and then we add a bunch of extra layers of understanding and interpretation to that. Science can establish and investigate what the thing that happened actually was, but it can't do anything like as good a job of analysing the extra layers that we add to everything - not least because there are as many different understandings and interpretations as there are people.

For one thing, this assumes quite naively that science is not interpretive. Which is nonsense.
More importantly - for me, anyway - this is a prioritization of the scientific perspective, as if that is the way to understand what is really going on. And that prioritization happened without any real justification.

--------------------
So don't ever call me lucky
You don't know what I done, what it was, who I lost, or what it cost me
- A B Original: I C U

----
Love is as strong as death (Song of Solomon 8:6).

Posts: 2958 | From: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
lilBuddha
Shipmate
# 14333

 - Posted      Profile for lilBuddha     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:

BUT - the fact that the scientific answer doesn't do those things doesn't mean there's anything actually happening other than what the scientific explanation describes.

Yes, it does. It means exactly that. This is the materialist position, writ large. I don't accept it. It is a statement of faith.
This argument is no more than "I do not believe it, therefore it is not true".
Nothing argues thus far puts paid to MtM's statement.

--------------------
I put on my rockin' shoes in the morning
Hallellou, hallellou

Posts: 17627 | From: the round earth's imagined corners | Registered: Dec 2008  |  IP: Logged
Dark Knight

Super Zero
# 9415

 - Posted      Profile for Dark Knight   Email Dark Knight   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:

BUT - the fact that the scientific answer doesn't do those things doesn't mean there's anything actually happening other than what the scientific explanation describes.

Yes, it does. It means exactly that. This is the materialist position, writ large. I don't accept it. It is a statement of faith.
This argument is no more than "I do not believe it, therefore it is not true".
Nothing argues thus far puts paid to MtM's statement.

This is flat out dishonest, or really dumb. Did you even bother to read the rest of my post? I did not conclude with this, I offered reasons for my position.

--------------------
So don't ever call me lucky
You don't know what I done, what it was, who I lost, or what it cost me
- A B Original: I C U

----
Love is as strong as death (Song of Solomon 8:6).

Posts: 2958 | From: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
lilBuddha
Shipmate
# 14333

 - Posted      Profile for lilBuddha     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
I read it, it was not convincing.

--------------------
I put on my rockin' shoes in the morning
Hallellou, hallellou

Posts: 17627 | From: the round earth's imagined corners | Registered: Dec 2008  |  IP: Logged
Dark Knight

Super Zero
# 9415

 - Posted      Profile for Dark Knight   Email Dark Knight   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
So you decided to misrepresent it? Nicely played.
I am happy to discuss further on the hell thread, as I've pretty much had enough of your tactics here. Join me there if you want.

--------------------
So don't ever call me lucky
You don't know what I done, what it was, who I lost, or what it cost me
- A B Original: I C U

----
Love is as strong as death (Song of Solomon 8:6).

Posts: 2958 | From: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
Evensong wrote:

People are quite welcome to make up whatever they think a word means. But we do have dictionaries for a reason.

Dictionaries record usage. As usage changes, so do dictionary entries.

What does the dictionary currently say "atheist" means, then?

EDIT: And I'm well aware we've already had a version of this conversation in Hell.

I think traditionally dictionaries have given a version of 'strong' atheism, i.e. a rejection of God. But in the last 20 years, 'weak' atheism has been argued for much more, and is beginning to percolate into dictionaries.

Thus the Merriam-Webster online dictionary has two entries: 'a disbelief in the existence of deity', and 'the doctrine that there is no deity'.

The second one here is definitely strong.

One thing that happened in many atheist groups, is that the strong version was rejected, as being actually unsustainable. If you say 'there is definitely no God', how are you going to defend that? It seems impossible, therefore the idea of agnostic atheism began to develop - basically that one cannot 'know' that there is no God, while one lacks belief.

Hence an agnostic atheist lacks both knowledge and belief in God. The Wiki entry actually is quite comprehensive and describes both positions.

What I find odd about this, is that theists often reject the weak version, and insist that the strong version is the only possible view! This is linguistic imperialism, I think.

It's quite comical that when Dawkins recently said he was agnostic about God, some newspapers announced this as a shock development, but he has always said this. On his 1-7 scale, he is a 6.9, and many atheists say they are a 6.

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
Just an addendum to that - the reason that some theists insist on the strong meaning of atheism, is that this then has the burden of proof, 'I am certain there are no gods, and these are the reasons'. You're having a giraffe, ain't you?

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
Evensong wrote:

People are quite welcome to make up whatever they think a word means. But we do have dictionaries for a reason.

Dictionaries record usage. As usage changes, so do dictionary entries.

What does the dictionary currently say "atheist" means, then?

EDIT: And I'm well aware we've already had a version of this conversation in Hell.

I think traditionally dictionaries have given a version of 'strong' atheism, i.e. a rejection of God. But in the last 20 years, 'weak' atheism has been argued for much more, and is beginning to percolate into dictionaries.

Thus the Merriam-Webster online dictionary has two entries: 'a disbelief in the existence of deity', and 'the doctrine that there is no deity'.

The second one here is definitely strong.

Well, I'd say the first one is strong as well. It says 'disbelief', not 'lack of belief', and it's lack of belief that would be the "weak" form that you describe as agnostic atheism.

The leading Australian dictionary has much the same definition.

I remain of the view that there's not a lot of point in turning 'agnostic' into some kind of qualifier of 'atheism' (and perhaps a qualifier of 'theism' as well, as we discussed in Hell), rather than having 'agnostic' as a distinct position. I can't see the value of moving from having "Yes, No, Don't Know" as 3 distinct answers and instead trying to blur the "Don't Know" answer by either treating it as part of a collective "Not Yes", or dividing it up into "Don't Know but leaning No" and "Don't Know but leaning Yes".

It's instructive that I've yet to encounter anyone who describes themselves as an "agnostic theist". It only seems to be from the atheist side that there's some kind of push to claim ownership of the uncertain middle ground.

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
I think there are agnostic theists, people who believe in gods but don't actually know if there are any. Well, hang on, that describes me!

'Agnostic atheism' is required to distinguish knowing and believing, which are orthogonal to each other, not on a continuum.

I think also it's an extra degree of precision, to separate out people who don't have a belief in gods, but don't categorically know that there aren't any. This seems to describe an awful lot of atheists today.

But as I said, some theists are quite irate at this, because of the shifting burden of proof. If someone is certain that there are no gods, they are now required to produce an argument. Errm, what would that be?

Oh, I forgot 'disbelief' - it depends on whether you take 'dis' as a privative, like 'a', i.e. lacking belief.

[ 10. October 2014, 08:25: Message edited by: quetzalcoatl ]

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
# 4360

 - Posted      Profile for Marvin the Martian     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
The materialist or reductionist position suggests that, whatever we think or feel about a phenomenon, what is actually going on is what is happening at the molecular level, or the scientifically verifiable level. This is not the case, at all. And you don't just get to assume it is.

Well, I'm unconvinced that what we think or feel about any given event is an inherent part of the event itself. If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is around, it still fell. And if somebody had been watching, it would still have fallen in exactly the same way. And that is true regardless of what that observer might have thought or felt about it.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that our thoughts and feelings aren't real. I'm just saying that they are a different thing to the events that cause them. No event is inherently tragic, comic, momentous, insignificant, etc. - those are meanings we ascribe to events, but the events themselves are exactly the same regardless of how we happen to categorise them. We can talk all night about what an event meant to us, about its significance, it's meaning, and so forth - but we would be talking about our thoughts and feelings about the event, not the event itself.

Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

Posts: 30100 | From: Adrift on a sea of surreality | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
I think also it's an extra degree of precision, to separate out people who don't have a belief in gods, but don't categorically know that there aren't any. This seems to describe an awful lot of atheists today.

If you get terribly picky it describes every atheist, just as belief in God, rather than knowledge that God exists, describes every theist. I suspect the only distinction here is between people who assert certainties with a degree of bravado/self-deception and those who have more circumspect personalities.

In fact we could get into fascinating philosophical discussions about any number of things that people don't really "know" but merely "believe", things that have nothing to do with theology.

But (as arguably demonstrated by a rather lengthy Hell post I made a short while ago), right now I'd rather not get into such discussions, and instead I'd prefer to go and enjoy the experiences of having some dinner, listening to some Dvorak and watching the season premiere of The Good Wife.

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
itsarumdo
Shipmate
# 18174

 - Posted      Profile for itsarumdo     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.
This is the rational scientific observer position. All interaction with the outside world can be suspended indefinitely so that the true nature of things may be investigated.

--------------------
"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

Posts: 994 | From: Planet Zog | Registered: Jul 2014  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.
This is the rational scientific observer position. All interaction with the outside world can be suspended indefinitely so that the true nature of things may be investigated.
Pity no-one told Einstein or Schroedinger about this.

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
# 4360

 - Posted      Profile for Marvin the Martian     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.
That's not exactly what I was talking about, though. If I think about committing a murder, has a murder actually been committed? Of course not. Therefore the thought is not the action (and vice versa).

Similarly, if I accidentally drop a hammer from a window and it hits someone on the head and kills them then that isn't murder - but if I deliberately dropped the hammer at them such that it hit and killed them in exactly the same way then that would be murder. But the actual event of dropped-hammer-hitting-head is exactly the same in both cases. The intention - the thought and feeling, if you will - doesn't change the event itself, it only changes how we in turn will think and feel about it.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

Posts: 30100 | From: Adrift on a sea of surreality | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
I think also it's an extra degree of precision, to separate out people who don't have a belief in gods, but don't categorically know that there aren't any. This seems to describe an awful lot of atheists today.

If you get terribly picky it describes every atheist, just as belief in God, rather than knowledge that God exists, describes every theist. I suspect the only distinction here is between people who assert certainties with a degree of bravado/self-deception and those who have more circumspect personalities.

In fact we could get into fascinating philosophical discussions about any number of things that people don't really "know" but merely "believe", things that have nothing to do with theology.

But (as arguably demonstrated by a rather lengthy Hell post I made a short while ago), right now I'd rather not get into such discussions, and instead I'd prefer to go and enjoy the experiences of having some dinner, listening to some Dvorak and watching the season premiere of The Good Wife.

Fair enough. I think a lot of this is a fightback against what I call linguistic imperialism, that is, people who start saying, 'X is the correct definition of 'atheism', and you are using the incorrect definition'.

This is nonsense really. Meaning is use. The end.

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
itsarumdo
Shipmate
# 18174

 - Posted      Profile for itsarumdo     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.
That's not exactly what I was talking about, though. If I think about committing a murder, has a murder actually been committed? Of course not. Therefore the thought is not the action (and vice versa).

Similarly, if I accidentally drop a hammer from a window and it hits someone on the head and kills them then that isn't murder - but if I deliberately dropped the hammer at them such that it hit and killed them in exactly the same way then that would be murder. But the actual event of dropped-hammer-hitting-head is exactly the same in both cases. The intention - the thought and feeling, if you will - doesn't change the event itself, it only changes how we in turn will think and feel about it.

OK - though whenever you think about something, it immediately plays out in your premotor cortex as if you were actually dong it. And the only way that can be suppressed is for the motor cortex in the same motor segment to correspondingly reduce its background activity. So it's still playing through your body, and neurology, it's still playing out emotionally, and these are real. But not easily measured by external means. The effect of the intervention or non-intervention you describe will probably live with you for the rest of your life and may then affect future decisions or actions. So how real is it? Is it necessary for something to have the force of a hammer falling for it to be "real"?

Is there a threshold of activity or effect above which reality exists (and below which it doesn't exist)? I'd say not. Tiny flickers of quantum activity determine whether a bird can detect magnetic orientation well enough to navigate. Just a few photons hit the retina of a sperm whale or giant squid at 2km. Does the fact that a snake might wait for 3 hours in one spot for something to pass it so that it can strike - make that inaction meaningless? The problem lies with the measurement devices not being sensitive enough or not being capable of detecting certain events or the operator simply thinking that they are so tiny as to not be important. Also, as we become more subtle in our scope of attention, "noise" becomes more and more difficult to filter out - it becomes harder and harder to separate one subtle signal or response from another in an analysable manner. However, our brains and our senses do this very well in an environment they have learned. Small imperceptible signals or juxtapositions tell our dog no matter how careful we are - that someone will be packing bags to go out within 24 hours. The effect of these subtle changes is that his behaviour alters and it becomes almost impossible not to trip over him.

--------------------
"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

Posts: 994 | From: Planet Zog | Registered: Jul 2014  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
This is nonsense really. Meaning is use. The end.

No it's not. Meaning is shared use.

If meaning was use, I wouldn't have to spend quite so much time discussing with more senior drafters how to improve the language of my drafts. The whole notion of 'improving' wouldn't exist. The draft would be perfect because it conveyed my thoughts in my words.

[ 10. October 2014, 10:04: Message edited by: orfeo ]

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
orfeo

Ship's Musical Counterpoint
# 13878

 - Posted      Profile for orfeo   Author's homepage   Email orfeo   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
In fact, my entire job gives the lie to the proposition that dictionary meanings don't matter. I have to rely on dictionary meanings sometimes, for the precise purpose of communicating to the greatest number of people possible. I also have to consciously avoid some words or expressions because of the risk of ambiguity, of people reaching different conclusions as to what I meant.

--------------------
Technology has brought us all closer together. Turns out a lot of the people you meet as a result are complete idiots.

Posts: 18173 | From: Under | Registered: Jul 2008  |  IP: Logged
Marvin the Martian

Interplanetary
# 4360

 - Posted      Profile for Marvin the Martian     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
OK - though whenever you think about something, it immediately plays out in your premotor cortex as if you were actually dong it.

But my point is that that's not the same thing as actually doing it. I'm not really doing it - I'm just thinking about doing it. There's a significant difference there.

quote:
So it's still playing through your body, and neurology, it's still playing out emotionally, and these are real.
Yes, they are real. But they're still different to the action itself - they aren't really the action, in other words.

quote:
Is it necessary for something to have the force of a hammer falling for it to be "real"?
No. But it's necessary for a hammer to actually fall in order for a hammer to be falling. Simply thinking about a falling hammer doesn't mean a hammer is really falling.

quote:
Is there a threshold of activity or effect above which reality exists (and below which it doesn't exist)?
This isn't about what's real and what's not. It's about whether what we think about an event actually changes the event itself. I say not.

--------------------
Hail Gallaxhar

Posts: 30100 | From: Adrift on a sea of surreality | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
In fact, my entire job gives the lie to the proposition that dictionary meanings don't matter. I have to rely on dictionary meanings sometimes, for the precise purpose of communicating to the greatest number of people possible. I also have to consciously avoid some words or expressions because of the risk of ambiguity, of people reaching different conclusions as to what I meant.

I agree about shared use, and I think Wittgenstein meant that with his famous statement.

I don't think dictionaries don't matter, but see Evensong above who is using the argumentum ad lexicon, as if it trumps any argument.

As usage shifts, dictionaries begin to reflect this, and I expect that the sense of 'lacking belief in gods' will begin to figure for 'atheism'.

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
goperryrevs
Shipmtae
# 13504

 - Posted      Profile for goperryrevs   Author's homepage   Email goperryrevs   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Is it necessary for something to have the force of a hammer falling for it to be "real"?
No. But it's necessary for a hammer to actually fall in order for a hammer to be falling. Simply thinking about a falling hammer doesn't mean a hammer is really falling.
This is maybe just an interesting aside, but I recall there have been studies that make this distinction a bit more blurry. So, for example, thinking about doing exercise actually builds up muscle (obviously nowhere near as much as doing it, but more than not thinking about doing exercise), and people who imagined learning piano for two weeks (without actually sitting in front of a piano) prior to taking lessons, then developed much more quickly than people who started lessons cold. Interesting huh? Anyway, carry on.

--------------------
"Keep your eye on the donut, not on the hole." - David Lynch

Posts: 2098 | From: Midlands | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Evensong
Shipmate
# 14696

 - Posted      Profile for Evensong   Author's homepage   Email Evensong   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
In fact, my entire job gives the lie to the proposition that dictionary meanings don't matter. I have to rely on dictionary meanings sometimes, for the precise purpose of communicating to the greatest number of people possible. I also have to consciously avoid some words or expressions because of the risk of ambiguity, of people reaching different conclusions as to what I meant.

I agree about shared use, and I think Wittgenstein meant that with his famous statement.

I don't think dictionaries don't matter, but see Evensong above who is using the argumentum ad lexicon, as if it trumps any argument.

Actually I started out using Susan Doris's own lexicon

Atheism (by her definition) is not a scientific position. Yet she consistently argues that science is the only important and "true" position.

I agree with orfeo that meanings are about shared use.

In my experience, those aboard this ship ( and on other online websites and articles ) that state themselves to be atheists do not come from the position of your "agnostic" atheism, they come from a very strong anti-position that ridicules theism with such analogies like Justinian has provided: leprechauns, moon made of cheese, Santa Claus and the flying spaghetti monster to name a few.

In my experience atheism is hard line and seeks to ridicule faith as being irrational. Different from your experience perhaps but there you go.

If we take the atheism/agnosticism meaning that you are proposing, then atheism is a faith position, not a scientific position. But I really reckon you'd be hard pressed to get a self-confessed atheist to accept that.

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

Posts: 9481 | From: Australia | Registered: Apr 2009  |  IP: Logged
Evensong
Shipmate
# 14696

 - Posted      Profile for Evensong   Author's homepage   Email Evensong   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by goperryrevs:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Is it necessary for something to have the force of a hammer falling for it to be "real"?
No. But it's necessary for a hammer to actually fall in order for a hammer to be falling. Simply thinking about a falling hammer doesn't mean a hammer is really falling.
This is maybe just an interesting aside, but I recall there have been studies that make this distinction a bit more blurry. So, for example, thinking about doing exercise actually builds up muscle (obviously nowhere near as much as doing it, but more than not thinking about doing exercise), and people who imagined learning piano for two weeks (without actually sitting in front of a piano) prior to taking lessons, then developed much more quickly than people who started lessons cold. Interesting huh? Anyway, carry on.
Yes. Mind matters.

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

Posts: 9481 | From: Australia | Registered: Apr 2009  |  IP: Logged
Grokesx
Shipmate
# 17221

 - Posted      Profile for Grokesx   Email Grokesx   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
In my experience, those aboard this ship ( and on other online websites and articles ) that state themselves to be atheists do not come from the position of your "agnostic" atheism, they come from a very strong anti-position that ridicules theism with such analogies like Justinian has provided: leprechauns, moon made of cheese, Santa Claus and the flying spaghetti monster to name a few.
You're right, we're all bastards. And that Susan, who doesn't ridicule theism that way, she's just as bad.

Fucking hilarious.

--------------------
For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. H. L. Mencken

Posts: 373 | From: Derby, UK | Registered: Jul 2012  |  IP: Logged
Evensong
Shipmate
# 14696

 - Posted      Profile for Evensong   Author's homepage   Email Evensong   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
You've never heard of passive aggressive?

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

Posts: 9481 | From: Australia | Registered: Apr 2009  |  IP: Logged
quetzalcoatl
Shipmate
# 16740

 - Posted      Profile for quetzalcoatl   Email quetzalcoatl   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
It just illustrates the point that some theists don't like weak (or agnostic) atheism, as then they don't have their favourite straw man to play with, that is, the nasty anti-theist who yells 'Sky-daddy' when he wakes up, and then 'leprechauns' when he has his dinner, and 'Pastafarian' when he goes to sleep. How uncouth.

--------------------
I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

Posts: 9878 | From: UK | Registered: Oct 2011  |  IP: Logged
Karl: Liberal Backslider
Shipmate
# 76

 - Posted      Profile for Karl: Liberal Backslider   Author's homepage   Email Karl: Liberal Backslider   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
I think there are agnostic theists, people who believe in gods but don't actually know if there are any. Well, hang on, that describes me!


Me too.

--------------------
Might as well ask the bloody cat.

Posts: 17938 | From: Chesterfield | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Karl: Liberal Backslider
Shipmate
# 76

 - Posted      Profile for Karl: Liberal Backslider   Author's homepage   Email Karl: Liberal Backslider   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
It just illustrates the point that some theists don't like weak (or agnostic) atheism, as then they don't have their favourite straw man to play with, that is, the nasty anti-theist who yells 'Sky-daddy' when he wakes up, and then 'leprechauns' when he has his dinner, and 'Pastafarian' when he goes to sleep. How uncouth.

This, as well.

--------------------
Might as well ask the bloody cat.

Posts: 17938 | From: Chesterfield | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Evensong
Shipmate
# 14696

 - Posted      Profile for Evensong   Author's homepage   Email Evensong   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
It just illustrates the point that some theists don't like weak (or agnostic) atheism, as then they don't have their favourite straw man to play with, that is, the nasty anti-theist who yells 'Sky-daddy' when he wakes up, and then 'leprechauns' when he has his dinner, and 'Pastafarian' when he goes to sleep. How uncouth.

Not at all. Susan Dories is not an agnostic atheist. She firmly believes in scientism as her new God.

That last definition was an oxymoronic stumble from her usual high falutin dismissal of theism.

[ 10. October 2014, 12:07: Message edited by: Evensong ]

--------------------
a theological scrapbook

Posts: 9481 | From: Australia | Registered: Apr 2009  |  IP: Logged
Grokesx
Shipmate
# 17221

 - Posted      Profile for Grokesx   Email Grokesx   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Evensong:
You've never heard of passive aggressive?

Since you're such a fan of definitions, Wikipedia has that as: "indirect expression of hostility, such as through procrastination, sarcasm, stubbornness, sullenness, or deliberate or repeated failure to accomplish requested tasks for which one is (often explicitly) responsible".

I suppose Susan is exhibiting a deliberate failure to agree with you.

--------------------
For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. H. L. Mencken

Posts: 373 | From: Derby, UK | Registered: Jul 2012  |  IP: Logged
Dafyd
Shipmate
# 5549

 - Posted      Profile for Dafyd   Email Dafyd   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quetzalcoatl:
As usage shifts, dictionaries begin to reflect this, and I expect that the sense of 'lacking belief in gods' will begin to figure for 'atheism'.

Beliefs aren't things such that you can lack them.

I've seen the weak atheist definition used in two contexts.

The first, and comparatively trivial, is to claim that the burden of proof lies on religious believers, and that therefore religious believers are rightly subject to the rationality sanction police.
The underlying assumptions about 'burden of proof' are really problematic. (Let's just say that burden of proof is a legal phrase. Epistemology is not a law court.)

The second is to claim that as the children of religious believers are atheists on this definition, atheists have the right to police religious childbearing until such time as the children have been inoculated with the belief that religion is an irrational pastime that only weirdos engage in.
Let's just say that the right to bring up one's children in one's own religion and culture is enshrined in the United Nation Declaration of Human Rights. It's that important.

--------------------
we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

Posts: 10567 | From: Edinburgh | Registered: Feb 2004  |  IP: Logged
SusanDoris

Incurable Optimist
# 12618

 - Posted      Profile for SusanDoris   Author's homepage   Email SusanDoris   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
With respect Susan (and I do mean that - you at least have been polite) you've missed the point. My remarks about love are not meant to indicate there is a mystical "something" that you seem to be referring to. Rather, I was trying to explain that you cannot reduce love to what is going on in your brain - which is what

you ended up doing.

Thank you for your response. I think I canfairly claim, even assert, that I fully appreciate this emotion called love is of the very greatest importance, to believers and non-believers alike, and that whatever the extent,duration and range of feelings and emotions that are encompassed by that word love, they all originate in the human brain and body. They are evolved traits which most certainly have helped to ensure the survival of our species. This does not mean that every aspect of the processes can be individually measured and analysed, but love, and all the other emotions humans feel are instinctive, inherited characteristics. Do yu agree with this?
quote:
As I think AC made clear earlier, you can't describe what something is made of and then just step away and say "finished!" No - not even close.
I agree - this is a subject whose study will never cease.
quote:
In the case of love, we can't actually agree on what it is, what it should feel like, what its effects are, how it manifests, what causes it (I mean, what circumstances cause us to feel love, and what that feeling even feels like, at the risk of sounding tautological) - how on earth could we even begin to point to the brain and say "this is love right here"? More importantly - infinitely more importantly - what on earth would that even establish? It might have significance for a brain surgeon, or a neuroscientist like IngoB. Not terribly much for me.
but infinite as the range of feelings involved in the emotion of love may be, there is never going to be a discovery which says that the source of it exists outside of (living) humans themselves.
quote:
I certainly have no intention of trying to diminish anyone's sense of wonder at the natural world, or what science has revealed.
I agree! The more I know about its scientific basis, the more it can be wondered at.
quote:
But if I want to understand the significance of phenomena that can't be empirically measured, why would I consult a set of methods that empirically measure stuff?
To do so would be an act of blind faith, rather than reason.

I don'tthink I've ever said that love, a single syllable (in English anyway) which has no defining boundaries should be given measurements, but knowing that the whole of it is an evolved human trait, and that it can be shown which chemicals are produced and whereabouts in the brain certain areasare activated when aspects of love are experienced, I think. makes it more of a wonder, not less, I think.
quote:
when you say things like "people want to believe" you have to be careful. People also want to believe all phenomena can be reduced to empiricism.
Point taken.
quote:
I don't really understand why, just as you apparently don't understand the existence of religious faith.
That I do understand because I had a religious faith. There was no doubting the beliefs of mye CofE background, Sunday School, confirmation, etc.
quote:
Re the sceptic's question - it's a modern question of course. Prior to modernity, one typically (though not always) observed the religion of one's culture and region. As a modern person, I do compare religions - although admittedly I have only recently started doing this. If I found a religion that more adequately articulated the significance of my experience of the divine, I would convert. That hasn't happened yet. It might.
Your phrase ‘experience of the divine’ – I would be most interested to know how you can differentiate this 'divine'from ideas in our imagination.

--------------------
I know that you believe that you understood what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

Posts: 3083 | From: UK | Registered: May 2007  |  IP: Logged
Justinian
Shipmate
# 5357

 - Posted      Profile for Justinian   Email Justinian   Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.
This is the rational scientific observer position. All interaction with the outside world can be suspended indefinitely so that the true nature of things may be investigated.
That position is a strawman of anything held by anyone in the mainstream today. It has been utterly untenable, as has already been pointed out, since Einstein's Theory of Relativity and Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle in the early part of last century.

The current mainstream position is that "It is physically impossible to suspend all interaction with the outside world. The mere act of observation changes that which is observed. Therefore we need to check what we think we see is what we are observing rather than something we ourselves have brought with us, and to file it accordingly."

quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
quote:
Originally posted by Dark Knight:
Some things cannot be established and investigated using science.

I think there's some confusion here about what "established and investigated" means.

Take pain, for instance. We know that it's basically the response of nerve cells to damage sustained by the body. That's the scientific explanation for it, but that explanation doesn't get to the heart of what it actually feels like to the one sustaining the damage - and it certainly doesn't provide any insight into what we should do to minimise pain for ourselves or others.

BUT - the fact that the scientific answer doesn't do those things doesn't mean there's anything actually happening other than what the scientific explanation describes.

Yes, it does. It means exactly that. This is the materialist position, writ large. I don't accept it. It is a statement of faith.
And this is a failure of logic that has created another straw man. "I do not know what is in the unopenable box" doesn't mean "There is something in the box." The box might have something in it. It might not. It means simply that I don't know. A position that in my experience almost all atheists are fine with - but many theists have serious problems with such uncertainty.

And if I can't open the box I can still do things to establish whether or not it is likely that there is something in the box. I can weigh the box. I can examine its construction and see what it's made of. I can shake it. I can try to X-ray it. I can tap it and listen to the echoes. I can find its resonant frequency. I can make computer models based on the results. I can find its centre of mass.

If I'm unable to open the box then there's nothing that will prove that the box is empty. I can however discover that it is a box impermeable to x-rays that weighs exactly the same as if all the sides were a certain thickness of the substance the sides are made of. I can establish that there's nothing that shifts position when I move the box. I can establish the resonant frequency of the box.

And from all this I can establish a lot of properties of the box. I can't tell if the box is actually empty or whether it's full of aerogel. I can't even tell whether the laws of physics are the same inside or outside the box. Because it's closed. There are a number of possible things inside the box that I can't test for. But I can tell there's nothing heavy in there. I can tell there's nothing moving around in there with respect to the real world. None of this is a statement of faith even if the likely conclusion, that the box is actually empty, is.

And Evensong you were the one who brought up the Flying Spaghetti Monster. May you be touched by its noodly appendage.

--------------------
My real name consists of just four letters, but in billions of combinations.

Eudaimonaic Laughter - my blog.

Posts: 3926 | From: The Sea Coast of Bohemia | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
itsarumdo
Shipmate
# 18174

 - Posted      Profile for itsarumdo     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by SusanDoris:
...Your phrase ‘experience of the divine’ – I would be most interested to know how you can differentiate this 'divine'from ideas in our imagination.

Heck - that's another of the usual "I can't trust my senses" arguments. If you can't tell the difference between a can of baked beans and a west highland terrier, then just be careful when using a can opener.

Or more to the point, if you can't tell the difference between what you have deliberately imagined and what your senses tell you (and you are moderately sane) then you're in deep doodoo. You could be imagining all kinds of things - even that you are having a conversation on ShipOfFools (no it doesn't actually exist - it's a virtual reality).

--------------------
"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

Posts: 994 | From: Planet Zog | Registered: Jul 2014  |  IP: Logged
itsarumdo
Shipmate
# 18174

 - Posted      Profile for itsarumdo     Send new private message       Edit/delete post   Reply with quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Justinian:
quote:
Originally posted by itsarumdo:
quote:
Originally posted by orfeo:
quote:
Originally posted by Marvin the Martian:
Also, there's unarguably a definition of "real" that doesn't include thoughts and feelings. If I feel such strong hatred for someone that I think about killing them, they don't actually die. In fact, my thoughts and feelings in and of themselves have zero effect on the person whatsoever.

They have an effect on you, though. It seems as if this definition of "real" excludes you from the universe.
This is the rational scientific observer position. All interaction with the outside world can be suspended indefinitely so that the true nature of things may be investigated.
That position is a strawman of anything held by anyone in the mainstream today. It has been utterly untenable, as has already been pointed out, since Einstein's Theory of Relativity and Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle in the early part of last century.

The current mainstream position is that "It is physically impossible to suspend all interaction with the outside world. The mere act of observation changes that which is observed. Therefore we need to check what we think we see is what we are observing rather than something we ourselves have brought with us, and to file it accordingly."
...

I don't see many predators jumping onto figments of their imagination and ripping it to pieces. As part of the natural world, we already embody a capacity to work with and live within this universal interaction. Trust your senses.

--------------------
"Iti sapis potanda tinone" Lycophron

Posts: 994 | From: Planet Zog | Registered: Jul 2014  |  IP: Logged



Pages in this thread: 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11 
 
Post new thread  Post a reply Close thread   Feature thread   Move thread   Delete thread Next oldest thread   Next newest thread
 - Printer-friendly view
Go to:

Contact us | Ship of Fools | Privacy statement

© Ship of Fools 2016

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classicTM 6.5.0

 
follow ship of fools on twitter
buy your ship of fools postcards
sip of fools mugs from your favourite nautical website
 
 
  ship of fools