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Old 04-03-2007, 08:38 PM   #91
Nicato
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

[CONTINUED FROM ABOVE]

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1. Yes
2. Everything within the universe must have a cause. No reaction happens without an action. "X", the action that brought our universe to be, cannot be contained within this universe because if it were, it would have to have its own cause, in which case the universe would have to be infinite, which it is not.
3. No. I simply asserted that the cause of the universe must be supernatural because the universe cannot be self-causing or self-perpetuating. I made no assertion that this proves the existence of God. You seem to be desperately grasping at straws here, hoping that I will try to posture some naturalistic proof of God that you can shoot down. On the contrary my whole point is entirely different: that, unlike your old pal Dawkins asserts, the existence of God is not a scientific claim (it is a statement of faith) and thus is not subject to scrutiny under the scientific method.
I'm glad you got rid of the sarcastic emoticon.

So, you essentially agree with the first two points, but you're basically claiming sanctuary from the third because you claim that you aren't making a scientific hypothesis (even though you're using scientific evidence to back yp your claim; even though you're making an objective claim about the universe). Well, fine, I'll give you that for the sake of argument, but your conclusion is eligible for a purely logical examination. (After all, according to you, either something is logical or it isn't). (Cue the my god is "beyond logic" defense.)

What is more likely the case is that you realize that your god is not logical and simply don't want that fact to be exposed.

---

EDITED TO ADD: Mike, I really think that you should seriously rethink your position. You believe that your god created the universe with a purpose, yet you are not able to demonstrate it by any means. You simply have faith. Realizing this, you've constructed quite an amusing defense: that faith is reasonable. This makes since if you are the kind of person to buy the NOMA jive, seeing as NOMA arbitrarily erects walls between two different fields. But once you take the NOMA mode of thinking out of the equation, there is no failsafe by which one can reach to escape the fact that faith is anything but reasonable. In fact, by definition, faith is oblivious to reason.

Now, you are free to say that you believe in your god simply because of faith and that would multiple times better than the mess of an argument you're positing. Let me see if I can get this straight: God is a logical necessity yet he cannot be examined logically because logic is a branch of naturalism (a false claim, by the way) and God is unmoved by the tenants of naturalism because he is supernatural. (And save the "this isn't what I said" line because it is.) I mean, wow--there had better be a big piece of cheese at the end of that maze.

Perhaps the most pathetic point in your argument was your failed attempt to demonstrate that I had no standard for belief. You must have realized that I took special exception to that remark considering that I went out of my way to clear it up directly. You were given a chance to take it back, but instead you hit an unnamed dictionary and claimed it's definition to be ubiquitous. Now, I don't want to say that that was an outright lie, in part because I'd have more respect for that position if you were lying, considering the alternative would be to have ignored resources such as Answers.com or dictionary.com which give multiple definitions from several sources. And what do those sites say? They say that your definition is more accurate of faith than it is of belief.

So, though you may use scientific data and logic to boast your belief in your god--its really nothing more than faith. Unreasonable, illogical faith.

Last edited by Nicato; 04-03-2007 at 11:32 PM.
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Old 04-04-2007, 03:19 AM   #92
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

Religion is the final thing that needs to go before we can call our lifeform intelligent. As long as people believe in stories written by barbarians 2000 years ago they are proving the evolution theory by showing they are closer in intellect to the monkey then to any evolved lifeform.
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Old 04-06-2007, 02:24 AM   #93
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Add to that the implicit infrence that your "supernatural" need not adhere to my "natural law" and I've summed up your argument quite fairly.
I was simply asserting that it's not necessarily God. I asserted that it is supernatural and beyond our understanding. I believe that it is God. I don't know that it is God.

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You did say your god was logical, did you not?
Faith in God is, in part, the result of the clear limitations of our knowledge as well as what we perceive when we observe the world around us.

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Yours is, but I would hasten to say that most people only have"faith in God" because they were indoctrinated by their parents.
That's why people follow religion in many cases. Belief in God has arisen out of every culture in the history of the world. There's an intrinsic connection we have to the spiritual.

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There is no non-sequitur or circular logic on my part--only a lack of evidence or demonstration on yours (as well as a circular argument).
Since you didn't respond to what I said and instead just tried to accuse me of some sort of fallacy, I'm just going to assume that we'll both be accusing each other of circular arguments. So let's move on rather than beating a dead horse.


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The majority of the adult population of the US denies a secular theory for Evolution and thinks that Creationism or ID should be taught along side Darwin's theory. It's like I said, the majority of the country sympathizes with the position of fundies.
Sure there is resistance to evolution. But that doesn't mean fundamentalism should be taken as a majority world view – questioning evolution does not make someone a fundamentalist. And if there is resistance to evolution, it's certainly not helping that people like Dawkins and Wilson are trying to turn evolution into an humanist agnostic religion. It's like Rod Liddle said: Maybe God exists, maybe he doesn't. Why can't we just leave it at that? I love Dawkins' work on evolutionary biology. I think his writings on religion are laughably bad.

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So why did you assert that science disproved God as a creator?
I didn't.
You said: "They also believed, as a fundamental concept, that they were created by god in his image. The theory of Evolution flat refuted that claim."

No, it didn't.


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I am saying that your pure "why" is in principle meaningless, no matter if science or religion or philosophy is examining it.
You'll have to elaborate, particularly on what you mean by "pure" why.



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So declaring the limitations of our universe does nothing to help (or hinder) your cause.
It's just an obvious acknowledgment that there is a beyond, and limit to naturalistic understanding.

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First of all, I like the "do as I say not as I do" vibe. If I were to say you've distorted my position, then I'm being hostile or antagonistic.
That's crap. You were being antagonistic with all your "you people" talk, like you are in this series of posts with your "talk like a grown up" vitriol. You have been continually distorting my position, and I've been repeatedly correcting you to no avail. It's getting old.

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Secondly, logic exists separate from naturalism.
No, it doesn't. They are intrinsically bound.

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Thirdly, if your god is not affirmed by logic, then he is by definition illogical.
This is wrong. We can see logical evidence of a supernatural. We can see logical evidence of order and design. We can see logical evidence that there are things beyond our capacity of understanding. From a purely rational perspective, we can ascertain that God's existence is plausible, if not provable. And no, not as plausible as a bazillion other things, but uniquely plausible.



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But you did draw conclusions.
No, I did not. I made a statement of faith.


[quote]I'm a fan of the butterfly effect: that if a twig hadn't snapped a billion years ago, it would be a very different planet. Why is it so hard to apply that logic on a cosmic scale?[quote]

I'm not sure where you're going with this.

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Further, you're making (yet another) logical fallacy in your false dichotomy--there are conceivable secular alternatives to the cause of the universe. It isn't just your god or the highway.
At no point did I ever say it was. I'm dumbfounded at how you can accuse me of this given the first thing you quoted in this post.

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Originally Posted by Nicato View Post
Mike, we've been down this road before. Most monotheists believe in a god which answers prayers, keeps tabs on our earthly affairs, yada, yada, yada.
Right. But how people feel connected to the spiritual isn't a condition of believing in God. People worship in different ways, connect in different ways. The fundamental concepts that define God are remarkably similar throughout religion.

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Sorry, but physics (unlike logic) is very much a part of the natural world, and so whatever necessity it demands is irrelevant to whatever "occurred" (right) before our universe--this is why the multiverse people hypothesize that each universe has different laws of physics. Your appeal to physics doesn't wash; the paradox remains.
When speaking of what is "outside" the universe, we have no concept of causality, physical law, etc. Those properties are intrinsic to our universe. Debating the nature of those properties in the supernatural is futile. What we do know, however, is the laws that govern our own universe. Nothing can have a reaction without an action, no cause without effect. The universe began at a finite point. Given these things, we can see that there is necessarily a beyond. No finite point can exist with a "before".

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The omniscient, omnipotent, morally perfect god is impossible (please spare me the yin and yang) but your intelligent designer isn't. It's better than the alternative, but the problem is that it's just one in an infinite number of possibilities (which, of course, begs the question of filtering from the infinity). The fact that you've reached an semi-exhaustive conclusion demonstrates that your "understanding" of your god came about from examining evidence through logic and science. Why you now say that your conclusions cannot be examined scientifically and logically is beyond me.
As I've said numerous times, theology is not a static worldview. It can be dynamic and adaptive, as it should be as our world gets smaller and our knowledge changes and grows. The Christian God you're mocking isn't impossible, only impossible when constrained by the boundaries you set for it to suit your cynicism. Perhaps you should chat with some Christians.

You also fail to separate the use of reason as a tool with reason as a limitation. Yes, we can see evidence of design and intelligence by observing the natural world. But the fact that the supernatural itself can't be naturally observed or quantified (for obvious reasons) does not mean we can't see evidence of its existence.

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I can't help but to extrapolate from that that you subscribe to option 2, that the purpose of the universe was to produce life.
I never made any assertion that the universe has a singular purpose, only that our existence within it has purpose.

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Here, you are jumping to option 3, that the universe was made to be as it was right now.
Really? The laws of physics made themselves just now?

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It is in principle predictable, but not necessarily in practice.
The point here is that nothing that happens in this universe is random. The structure of the universe facilitates all events as inevitabilities.

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Be specific, Mike, what was the purpose?
What makes you assume the universe has a singular purpose?

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Well, you're going to have to clear up two things then: your "perfect" remark and your appeal to Evolution as purpose ("The process is not aimless, because of the very physical foundations of the universe that have allowed evolution to take place").
"Perfect" meaning ordered. The Bible, in the book of Genesis, says that when God created the world, he brought order to chaos. Natural laws don't arbitrarily change, and their order has allow this vast universe and us to exist.

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For the sake of argument, let's assume that the laws themself are a constant. That fact alone doesn't dictate the inevitability of any one event (unless you're prepared to argue for destiny). The same laws could exist and be a still different universe (butterfly effect).
Right, but they didn't. That's the point. Don't confuse probability with randomness.
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Old 04-06-2007, 02:48 AM   #94
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

Continued....

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It is not nonsense. You are making a claim about the universe and if were ever found to be true, it would have to be written in science books. (Hell, it would be the greatest discovery of all.)
No, I'm not making a scientific claim because I'm talking about something that is intrinsically beyond the understanding of science and beyond the natural world. That the laws of physics indicate that these things likely do exist does not render their existence wholly reducible to naturalistic observation since these things are intrinsically supernatural. The only way you're able to make any of your arguments work is by defining God as something constrained by the laws of the universe he created, which is in complete conflict with any culture's definition of what God is. You do a great job of disproving God's existence when you change God's defintion to suit your intentions.

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I really don't get it. How are you saying that belief in your god is logical, but you're god is not? I mean, excuse me, but in what case is belief in something illogical considered logical?.
There's a distinction between illogical and beyond logic. I'm not sure why it's so difficult for you to understand that physical laws of our universe can point us to things that are beyond our capacity of understanding – you want all matters of faith to be reducible to naturally constrained laws. It doesn't work that way.

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What is more likely the case is that you realize that your god is not logical and simply don't want that fact to be exposed.
You're just getting desperate now. You've simply avoided or misrepresented a hefty portion of what I've argued (I'm spending each post re-correcting you on the same shit over and over), so I don't think you're in any position to be proclaiming some sort of victory here. You've repeatedly cornered yourself with your own positivist reductionism, and the only way you've been able to sustain this thread is by putting words into my mouth and then fabricating arguments about the words you made up. There's a term for that, one you like to use. Something about straw...

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Let me see if I can get this straight: God is a logical necessity yet he cannot be examined logically because logic is a branch of naturalism (a false claim, by the way) and God is unmoved by the tenants of naturalism because he is supernatural. (And save the "this isn't what I said" line because it is.) I mean, wow--there had better be a big piece of cheese at the end of that maze.
I did not say God was a logical necessity. Jesus H. Christ on a bicycle, I have corrected you on that every fucking post. I said that a transcendent, supernatural origin to our universe is a necessity because our universe can be neither self-causing or self-perpetuating. When you start talking about a supernatural cause, that sure sounds like God to me. When we see the immaculate order of the universe and of our world, that sure looks like design to me. But it's not proof that God exists. I never claimed it was. I stated quite bluntly on numerous occasions that it wasn't. This isn't a complicated concept dude.

On the latter point, yes, God is and has always been supernatural. That's what God is. If I write a videogame that has a living world with complex physics and AI routines, I've created that world. Everything in that world is bound by the rules I set for it. I, however, am not bound by those rules. To the videogame world, I'm supernatural. Asserting that a creative, supernatural God should be constrained by natural law is obvious nonsense. If God could create the universe, why would he be bound by its laws?

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Perhaps the most pathetic point in your argument was your failed attempt to demonstrate that I had no standard for belief.
You're just reducing it to an argument over semantics. I'm drawing a line between belief as a line of reasoning and belief as knowledge. You believe only in what you can quantitatively know. That may fit a broad definition of the word, but it's not really believing in anything, it's just an affirmation. It's like getting into a bar fight, getting punched in the face, and saying "I believe that guy just punched me in the face!" The only thing pathetic is that you're dragging it out.

Believe whatever the hell you want, Nic.
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Old 04-06-2007, 04:10 PM   #95
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Doolittle View Post
Faith in God is, in part, the result of the clear limitations of our knowledge as well as what we perceive when we observe the world around us.
The problem with your description of what "faith in God" is is that one does not have to have "faith in God" to realize the limitations of knowledge nor perception.

Furthermore--well, we'll get to that for later...

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Belief in God has arisen out of every culture in the history of the world. There's an intrinsic connection we have to the spiritual.
Fun fact: The same simulation software which causes us to have lucid hallucinations in our sleep comes with the side effect of assigning agency to our environment. It's why we mistake a coat rack in the dark for a person. If ideas can replicate themselves, infect other minds, and evolve, then it is no mystery how this "connection to the spiritual" has arisen--through clearly natural causes.

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Since you didn't respond to what I said and instead just tried to accuse me of some sort of fallacy, I'm just going to assume that we'll both be accusing each other of circular arguments. So let's move on rather than beating a dead horse.
Contrary to your notion that I haven't shown your fallacy, you've actually conceded it when you said that your premises couldn't be proven.

You, on the other hand, have attempted to say I was making a circular argument by saying I was relying on naturalistic evidence to demonstrate what is or is not supernatural. In response I've challenged you to prove it in the abstract, but you've falsely stated that logic is a part of naturalism (when in fact it is the other way around), a priori, and refuse to make a coherent, consistent, and exhaustive (which is all logic really is, btw) case for it.

I will get to why logic and philosophy are distinct later on...

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Sure there is resistance to evolution. But that doesn't mean fundamentalism should be taken as a majority world view – questioning evolution does not make someone a fundamentalist. And if there is resistance to evolution, it's certainly not helping that people like Dawkins and Wilson are trying to turn evolution into an humanist agnostic religion. It's like Rod Liddle said: Maybe God exists, maybe he doesn't. Why can't we just leave it at that? I love Dawkins' work on evolutionary biology. I think his writings on religion are laughably bad.
First of all, I wasn't saying that fundamentalism should be taking as a majority world view, I was saying that it has it's sympathizers in the US. And whatever the agenda of Dawkins or E.O. Wilson are is not evident to me, or relevant to this discussion.

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You said: "They also believed, as a fundamental concept, that they were created by god in his image. The theory of Evolution flat refuted that claim."

No, it didn't.
Yeah, Creationists (the "they" in my quote) believe that man was made directly from God while Evolution says that we were made indirectly from a process spanning some billions of years and that our "image" is only such because of environmental pressures (not theological influences).

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You'll have to elaborate, particularly on what you mean by "pure" why.
I think you should elaborate because I got the "pure" part from you.

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You have been continually distorting my position, and I've been repeatedly correcting you to no avail. It's getting old.
What is getting old is your double standard. You've gotten my position wrong a number of times (by your own admission) and yet we I accuse you of distortion, you're quick to say it was an honest misunderstanding. Yet, whenever (if ever) I get your position wrong, I'm being all malicious.

It is you who have repeatedly said that I believe that anything which exists must be necessarily be observable--a strawman I've had to tear down several times--lest we forget. And only through firmly addresses the point did you capture the subtly in my belief...by falsely accusing me of believing in nothing. So, if you want sit around and bitch about who got whose position wrong then we can go back and forth.

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No, it doesn't. They are intrinsically bound.
You're confused. It isn't that logic isn't separate from naturalism, it's just that naturalism is a logical philosophy. If it were proven tomorrow that there was a supernatural creator of the universe, then naturalism would die--but logic would remain (in part because logic would have been the killer). Whereas if there were intrinsically bound, they would have both necessarily have been slain.

What I am saying is that naturalism uses logic like a carpenter uses a hammer, and in most cases, the hammer would have been survived from the death of the carpenter. The deaths of many philosophies, many of which were based on a logical foundations, should be evidence of this.

So now that I've demonstrated that logic is distinct from naturalism, you can demonstrate how your god is logical.

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We can see logical evidence of a supernatural.
The "evidence" in question is non-exhaustive at best and at worst unwarranted, assuming you're talking about the first-uncaused cause paradox.

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We can see logical evidence of order and design.
We see order, and our perception gives us the illusion of design (just as it did for life on Earth), but we don't see purpose, not objectively anyway.

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We can see logical evidence that there are things beyond our capacity of understanding.
I've already demonstrated (and you've already conceded) that limitations essentially say nothing as to the requirement of anything beyond, yet you continue to boast it about as if it were evidence of anything. And please don't say you don't, because this liddle diddy clearly affirms that you do: "Faith in God is, in part, the result of the clear limitations of our knowledge as well as what we perceive when we observe the world around us."

Please drop this line of reasoning because it isn't the least bit persuasive.

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Old 04-06-2007, 04:26 PM   #96
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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From a purely rational perspective, we can ascertain that God's existence is plausible, if not provable. And no, not as plausible as a bazillion other things, but uniquely plausible.
I can agree that your god's existence is plausible, but not uniquely plausible (and forgive me if I laugh at the term "unique" because it was arbitrary when I was using it). The fact remains that your assertion is intrinsically equally probable because it is (perhaps in principle) unknowable.

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No, I did not. I made a statement of faith.
Now whose bitching about semantics?
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I'm not sure where you're going with this.
Yeah, you basically argued that if the big bang had been 0.0000000000000000000000000001% different then the universe would lack the capacity for life. My point with the butterfly effect is that even the most seemingly trivial events can, over time, have profound effects. So the idea that the universe is the way it is is evidence of design and purspose--simply because it could have been different--is specious. More directly put: Yeah, and if my Aunt had a dick she'd be my uncle.
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At no point did I ever say it was. I'm dumbfounded at how you can accuse me of this given the first thing you quoted in this post.
Cut the crap and hold the mustard, you are a making a false dichotomy when you say the that the "only alternative" to your god hypothesis is that the universe was an "accident."
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Right. But how people feel connected to the spiritual isn't a condition of believing in God. People worship in different ways, connect in different ways. The fundamental concepts that define God are remarkably similar throughout religion.
How are there similarities remarkable and what are the implications of such similarities?

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When speaking of what is "outside" the universe, we have no concept of causality, physical law, etc. Those properties are intrinsic to our universe. Debating the nature of those properties in the supernatural is futile. What we do know, however, is the laws that govern our own universe. Nothing can have a reaction without an action, no cause without effect. The universe began at a finite point. Given these things, we can see that there is necessarily a beyond. No finite point can exist with a "before".
Careful, Mike, you're just one step away from saying that the universe was self-causing.

Here you are saying that according to natural law, no effect can occur without a cause. But, if there is a "finite point" within the universe, as you say, then that "finite point," being within the universe, must also have a natural cause.

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As I've said numerous times, theology is not a static worldview. It can be dynamic and adaptive, as it should be as our world gets smaller and our knowledge changes and grows. The Christian God you're mocking isn't impossible, only impossible when constrained by the boundaries you set for it to suit your cynicism.
If by my suited cynicism, you mean The Bible then yeah.

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But the fact that the supernatural itself can't be naturally observed or quantified (for obvious reasons) does not mean we can't see evidence of its existence.
Yes it does. (But y'honor, look all the people who didn't see me rob the bank!)

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I never made any assertion that the universe has a singular purpose, only that our existence within it has purpose.
No matter, there isn't any evidence for that either.

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Really? The laws of physics made themselves just now?
I don't know. (Man, that felt good. You should try it.)

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The point here is that nothing that happens in this universe is random. The structure of the universe facilitates all events as inevitabilities.
Only if the universe is infinite--truly infinite--are all events inevitable. Besides that, things which occur in our universe may be bound to laws, but they certainly show no evidence of intent.

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What makes you assume the universe has a singular purpose?
What makes you assume that there must be any it all?

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"Perfect" meaning ordered...
As opposed to what? Anything which doesn't defeat itself is going to be ordered to some degree.

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Natural laws don't arbitrarily change, and their order has allow this vast universe and us to exist.
Natural laws don't change, period; and it's order ultimately says nothing toward a creator.

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Right, but they didn't. That's the point. Don't confuse probability with randomness.
What's to confuse?

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No, I'm not making a scientific claim because I'm talking about something that is intrinsically beyond the understanding of science and beyond the natural world. That the laws of physics indicate that these things likely do exist does not render their existence wholly reducible to naturalistic observation since these things are intrinsically supernatural.
The problem, of course, is that your boundary of science is arbitrary. The only reason science is bound to the natural world is because there isn't any evidence of anything beyond it. To declare that science is "intrinsically" bound to the natural world is just another unfortunate side effect of your NOMA doctrine.

Anyway, if you really believed that then you shouldn't care about what Hawking thinks about what occured before the Big Bang because he'd have to forefit his authority.

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The only way you're able to make any of your arguments work is by defining God as something constrained by the laws of the universe he created, which is in complete conflict with any culture's definition of what God is. You do a great job of disproving God's existence when you change God's defintion to suit your intentions.
I pale in comparison to you; redifining God to make your theology seem more sophisticated when in fact its just as faith-based as any other. Using logic and science to boast your claims yet slow to have it examined scientifically or logically is especially a neat touch.

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There's a distinction between illogical and beyond logic.
No, Mike, there isn't. Either something is logical or illogical--ther is no middle ground.


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I did not say God was a logical necessity.
Right...
"First Cause is a necessity of physics."

" based on what physicists have discovered about the universe over the last few hundred years, we can infer [that the supernatural's] existence as a logical necessity."

So the supernatural is a logical necissity, and the first cause is a necessity of physics, but your god isn't? Please.

This, of course, is just another instance that I've perfectly represented your argument where you've said I haven't.

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You believe only in what you can quantitatively know. That's not really believing anything, it's just an affirmation.
You are wrong. It is belief--not merely faith--in something infinitely more elagant than your imaginary friend.

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Old 04-08-2007, 10:21 PM   #97
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicato View Post
Now whose bitching about semantics?
Way to miss the side of the barn.


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Yeah, you basically argued that if the big bang had been 0.0000000000000000000000000001% different then the universe would lack the capacity for life. My point with the butterfly effect is that even the most seemingly trivial events can, over time, have profound effects. So the idea that the universe is the way it is is evidence of design and purspose--simply because it could have been different--is specious. More directly put: Yeah, and if my Aunt had a dick she'd be my uncle.
Right, so, enter string theory's proposition that we are part of an infinite series of multiverses which spawn other universes. We've covered this territory already.


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Cut the crap and hold the mustard, you are a making a false dichotomy when you say the that the "only alternative" to your god hypothesis is that the universe was an "accident."
OH really? Perhaps you'd care to propose an alternative? God as the creator is the ONLY option that allows the universe to have intrinsic, rather than ascribed, purpose.

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How are there similarities remarkable and what are the implications of such similarities?
I'm sorry but this could be a whole other thread. Brush up on your religious studies. It's not my job to educate you.

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Here you are saying that according to natural law, no effect can occur without a cause. But, if there is a "finite point" within the universe, as you say, then that "finite point," being within the universe, must also have a natural cause.
In this case, the "finite point" is the very beginning of the universe itself. So whatever triggered this event was not within the universe itself -- because there was no universe.

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Yes it does.
Well, that was convincing. Here's my rebuttal to that amazingly perceptive response: No, it doesn't.

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I don't know. (Man, that felt good. You should try it.)
Funny because a) they didn't, and b) agnostic skepticism has been a core tenant of everything I've argued; at no point have I asserted to have irrefutable knowledge of these things. The fact that you continually accuse me of making definitive statements of fact demonstrates your complete inability to grasp the fundamental concepts of my argument.

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Only if the universe is infinite--truly infinite--are all events inevitable. Besides that, things which occur in our universe may be bound to laws, but they certainly show no evidence of intent.
On the first point, that's nonsensical and you didn't support the argument in any way, so I'll assume you were (again) grasping at straws. On the second point, how do you define intent? How do you decide that the universe has no design?

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What makes you assume that there must be any it all?
Because there is no natural cause, or infinite string of causality, to explain the origin of the universe. This goes back to the very fact that we exist being such powerful evidence for God's existence.

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As opposed to what? Anything which doesn't defeat itself is going to be ordered to some degree.
See above.

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Natural laws don't change, period; and it's order ultimately says nothing toward a creator.
How does an ordered system arise of nothing?

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What's to confuse?
Probability is our ability to predict the likelihood of one event happening as opposed to another. Randomness is lacking any reason or purpose.

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The problem, of course, is that your boundary of science is arbitrary.
Actually, it's a fact of physics.

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The only reason science is bound to the natural world is because there isn't any evidence of anything beyond it. To declare that science is "intrinsically" bound to the natural world is just another unfortunate side effect of your NOMA doctrine.
That's not really an argument, just a weak attack that avoids addressing the point: that science itself acknowledges boundaries to the natural world. However, there are also numerous realities that indicate the existence of a greater reality.

Again, I recommend Deepak Chopra's "How to know God". But who am I kidding, thinking you'd actually watch something like that. It's easier for you to read atheist literature and continue making ignorant assumptions about theism.

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Anyway, if you really believed that then you shouldn't care about what Hawking thinks about what occured before the Big Bang because he'd have to forefit his authority.
Hawking doesn't presume to know what happened before the big bang. If you watched Rod Liddle's special, the physicists he interviews profess no knowledge of what happened prior to the big bang. Hawking only asserts that all things were at a point of infinite density, which is the simple result of calculations made to predict the expansion of the universe after the bang.

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I pale in comparison to you; redifining God to make your theology seem more sophisticated when in fact its just as faith-based as any other. Using logic and science to boast your claims yet slow to have it examined scientifically or logically is especially a neat touch.
I've not redefined God; It's twits like Dawkins who redefine God into a straw man they can shoot down with hackneyed positivism. Science and logic do show us evidence of design, evidence of order, evidence of higher realities -- ultimately, evidence of creative intelligence.

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No, Mike, there isn't. Either something is logical or illogical--ther is no middle ground.
You continue to miss the side of the barn.



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So the supernatural is a logical necissity, and the first cause is a necessity of physics, but your god isn't? Please.
Please what? First cause is a necessity of physics. However, that cause, that trigger, though it need be supernatural, need not be a God. Perhaps we are part of the infinite string of spawning multiverses. The point is that our universe cannot create itself. Where did everything come from Nic? Where did space, time, matter and energy come from? Why did the universe come into existence at all? There's nothing, then POW!, there it is. Again, I ask you: If there is no creative intelligence, no God, how does an ordered system arise from nothing?

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This, of course, is just another instance that I've perfectly represented your argument where you've said I haven't.
What's it like being so delusional?


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You are wrong. It is belief--not merely faith--in something infinitely more elagant than your imaginary friend.
What is more elegant that a Creator?
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Old 04-08-2007, 10:58 PM   #98
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Originally Posted by Nicato View Post
The problem with your description of what "faith in God" is is that one does not have to have "faith in God" to realize the limitations of knowledge nor perception.
Well duh. That's not the point. The point is that faith is not an arbitrary construct.


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Fun fact: The same simulation software which causes us to have lucid hallucinations in our sleep comes with the side effect of assigning agency to our environment. It's why we mistake a coat rack in the dark for a person. If ideas can replicate themselves, infect other minds, and evolve, then it is no mystery how this "connection to the spiritual" has arisen--through clearly natural causes.
How does an abstraction "replicate itself"?


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Contrary to your notion that I haven't shown your fallacy, you've actually conceded it when you said that your premises couldn't be proven.
That wasn't a concession; the fact that you think it was just continues to show that you just. don't. get it.

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Yeah, Creationists (the "they" in my quote) believe that man was made directly from God while Evolution says that we were made indirectly from a process spanning some billions of years and that our "image" is only such because of environmental pressures (not theological influences).
Right. Why is this even still being discussed? Oh yeah, because you aren't paying attention. This is the first thing I addressed when you brought this up. Yes, it refuted a literal interpretation of a creation allegory. That refutes God as the Creator how, exactly?

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What is getting old is your double standard. You've gotten my position wrong a number of times (by your own admission) and yet we I accuse you of distortion, you're quick to say it was an honest misunderstanding. Yet, whenever (if ever) I get your position wrong, I'm being all malicious.
I didn't say you were being malicious for getting my position wrong. You were being malicious for all the bigoted vitriol you were spewing. A misunderstanding is one thing, but when I have to re-correct you over the same freakin' points on every posts because you can't seem to grasp the basics of what I'm saying, you're either ignoring most of it or desperately trying to create a straw man.

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It is you who have repeatedly said that I believe that anything which exists must be necessarily be observable--a strawman I've had to tear down several times--lest we forget.
That's not what I said. Again, you miss the point. God dammit, I have addressed this directly numerous times. Listen: while you can accept the posibility of transcent realities, since these realities are not contained within the boundaries of what you can quantify, they may as well not exist. The problem is, the reality of the natural shows that there may very well be a supernatural.


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It isn't that logic isn't separate from naturalism, it's just that naturalism is a logical philosophy.
The very concept of logic is something that arises purely from our natural state and its inherent limitations.

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So now that I've demonstrated that logic is distinct from naturalism, you can demonstrate how your god is logical.
1. You need to learn that there is a difference between making an argument for something and "demonstrating" something. The only thing you demonstrated is your ignorance of the subject at hand.

2. The entire point behind everything I've written is that natural phenomena show evidence of design, order, creation, and the supernatural. Is the universe spontaneously coming into existence out of nothing any more logical than a Creative God? And before you go accusing me of a false dichotomy, remember that while there is much evidence for God's reality, we have to first acknowledge the reality of the supernatural. There is still room for a supernatural reality that has nothing to do with God, such as the multiverses of String Theory.

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We see order, and our perception gives us the illusion of design (just as it did for life on Earth), but we don't see purpose, not objectively anyway.
By what criterion do you assume our perception of design and order to be an illusion? How can you objectively demonstrate that it is an illusion, and not reality?

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I've already demonstrated (and you've already conceded) that limitations essentially say nothing as to the requirement of anything beyond, yet you continue to boast it about as if it were evidence of anything.
Again you are not "demonstrating" jack squat. The finite point of origin of the universe most certainly does point to the need of something beyond. Or, perhaps you'd care to posture, theoretically of course, how all space, time, energy and matter spontaneously came into existence. If scientists didn't accept the necessity of a beyond, String Theory wouldn't spend so much time trying to explain the origin of the universe by the way of supernatural realities.
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Old 04-09-2007, 10:28 AM   #99
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Originally Posted by Mike Doolittle View Post
Way to miss the side of the barn.
I'm Sorry, Mike, but if you want to have a meaningful discussion then you are going to have to expand on what exactly it is I am missing. Or is it easier to pretend as if I'm missing something rather than construct a coherent argument?

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Right, so, enter string theory's proposition that we are part of an infinite series of multiverses which spawn other universes. We've covered this territory already.
I don't see what the justification is for your "we've covered this territory already" remark is. Lest we forget, you did ask me a fucking question about what I meant by the butterfly effect.

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OH really? Perhaps you'd care to propose an alternative? God as the creator is the ONLY option that allows the universe to have intrinsic, rather than ascribed, purpose.
The fact of the matter is that your argument is intrinsically flawed. It doesn't matter if I can name one or one hundred different theories as to what caused the universe--the very fact that you don't have any positive evidence for your hypothesis is enough to make it a false dichotomy. Example: the fact that I may not have be able to give you a secular theory as to what caused the diversity of life on this planet doesn't mean that a god is the "only alternative."

You are invoking "god of the gaps." Plain and simple.

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I'm sorry but this could be a whole other thread. Brush up on your religious studies. It's not my job to educate you.
How you can continue to play the bully while acting like the victim is nothing short of astounding. Seriously, Bill O'Reilly should take notes.

Nevermind the fact that I asked you to expand on a concept you proposed. I mean, why should you have to, given the fact that every one of your assertions has been perfect. Of course, had you asked me to expand on a concept I proposed (like say the butterfly effect) and I had told you to go read a book, you would have thrown a hissy fit--and had I answered it honestly, you would have dismissed it (as you apparently did).

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In this case, the "finite point" is the very beginning of the universe itself. So whatever triggered this event was not within the universe itself -- because there was no universe.
I fail to see how something being in the beginning of somewhere makes it both nothing and nowhere. If the "finite point" was at the beginning of the universe, then it was still in the universe, and therefore subjected to its laws. Try again.

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Well, that was convincing. Here's my rebuttal to that amazingly perceptive response: No, it doesn't.
Hm, stick with "you're missing the side of the barn." It really seems to be working out for you.

Of course, I shouldn't have to explain what is so obviously self-evident:

Mike: "But the fact that the supernatural itself can't be naturally observed or quantified (for obvious reasons) does not mean we can't see evidence of its existence."
Nick: Yes it does. (But y'honor, look all the people who didn't see me rob the bank!).

Let's break it down:
Fact: We can't bring about positive evidence from something we can't observe.
Fact: We can't observe the supernatural.
Fact: Without positive evidence we, we have no means of ascertaining an exhaustive conclusion. (btw, here is were the bank robber allegory comes from.)
Fact: We cannot posit only negative evidence and find to come to an exhaustive conclusion.

Drumroll, please: The very fact that we have no positive evidence for X means that we can't observe evidence for X's existence. I can't believe I had to explain that.

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Funny because a) they didn't, and b) agnostic skepticism has been a core tenant of everything I've argued; at no point have I asserted to have irrefutable knowledge of these things. The fact that you continually accuse me of making definitive statements of fact demonstrates your complete inability to grasp the fundamental concepts of my argument.
Yes, how could I mistake language like "logical necessity" and "only alternative" for definitive claims? What was I on?

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On the first point, that's nonsensical and you didn't support the argument in any way, so I'll assume you were (again) grasping at straws.
Hey, Mike, if you could manage to get your head out of your bum for two seconds, you'd realize that my claim is self-evident. And for your benefit I'll take it slow:

"If the universe is infinite--truly infinite--then all events are inevitable." Now, what does infinite mean? Take your time. "Having no bounds or limits." What does inevitable mean? "Impossible to avoid or prevent." Now, let's restate my claim to make it tard-proof:

If the universe has no bounds, then all events are impossible to avoid. "...that's nonsensical..." It takes sense to make sense.


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On the second point, how do you define intent?
Read a book. It's not my job to educate you.

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How do you decide that the universe has no design?
Again, I'll go slow: there is no evidence of design, especially perfect or divine design. You're familiar with evidence aren't you? It's that thing you could find if it was nailed to your forehead.

Through all your pussyfooting though, you've managed to avoid answering the fucking question. Where is the evidence of design Mike? And if designed, how do you explain the inefficiencies and redundancies?

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Because there is no natural cause, or infinite string of causality, to explain the origin of the universe. This goes back to the very fact that we exist being such powerful evidence for God's existence.
Easy, cowboy. You might want focus on digging yourself out of your self-causing universe paradox first.

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See above.
Answer the damn question. I know, I know, your use of "perfect" was unfortunate. But you did say it so you're going to have to defend it. Ordered as opposed to what, Mike?

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How does an ordered system arise of nothing?
The same way your arguments do.

Again, you're making a false dichotomy. The options aren't necessarily your god or nothing.

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Probability is our ability to predict the likelihood of one event happening as opposed to another. Randomness is lacking any reason or purpose.
Then our universe is probably random.

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Actually, it's a fact of physics.
Seriously, unless you're going to throw up an equation, you can stop invoking physics. It's like amateur hour.

There are many, many top-tier physics out there and most of them are managing to miss your "logical necessity" (which is to say your god). How could that be? I mean if it really was the case that the "only alternative" to your god was nothing, then why isn't Stephen Hawking making your argument? Surely a man capable of doing physics in his head could conclude what you claim is so obviously evident.
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Old 04-09-2007, 10:39 AM   #100
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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That's not really an argument, just a weak attack that avoids addressing the point: that science itself acknowledges boundaries to the natural world.
I directly addressed the point, you just don't seem to get it. I'm saying that there should be no reason why the scientific method shouldn't, in principle, be applicable to your imaginary friend. If indeed it is ever found to be your god, it would have--at that point--became a part of science.

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However, there are also numerous realities that indicate the existence of a greater reality.
No, Mike, there is not. In fact, not only is there no evidence of numerous realities, but there isn't even evidence of two. All the ones which you've posited are either unknowable or on their face contradictory.

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Hawking doesn't presume to know what happened before the big bang. If you watched Rod Liddle's special, the physicists he interviews profess no knowledge of what happened prior to the big bang. Hawking only asserts that all things were at a point of infinite density, which is the simple result of calculations made to predict the expansion of the universe after the bang.
Ha! I like the "if you watched Rod Liddle's special" bit. I fucking posted it. You're the one going on at length about Dawkins having failed to acknowledge that you read his book, so save the book recommendations too.

With Hawking I was only saying that you shouldn't draw your conclusions from anything he has to say if you truly believed that science is intrinsically bound to the natural world.

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I've not redefined God
Yes, Mike, the god of which you are speaking is not the god which the majority of theists believe. Please realize this. You and another person can both say they believe in God be talking about two completely different things. Again, I bring it up because it doesn't seem to penetrate your thick skull: most people who believe in a god believe in a god that answers prayers, keeps tabs on their Earthly affairs, yada, yada, yada. To sit there and continue to present your vague abstraction as the mainstream ideal is just plain dishonest. If nothing else, you have redefined God in light of evidence of from science. No theologian from centuries ago could have appreciated the size and scope of our universe and the fact that we are in a position to better grasp its majesty should be nothing to deny. You have redefined god for the better, but ultimately you've presented only fallacious arguments for its existence. Realize that too.

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Science and logic do show us evidence of design, evidence of order, evidence of higher realities -- ultimately, evidence of creative intelligence.
Know this: You are saying that your God hypothesis is not able to be examined scientifically or logically, yet you are using SCIENCE and LOGIC to conclude it's existence. It is genuinely dumbfounding how you're able to continue this charade.

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You continue to miss the side of the barn.
I'm laughing because you were agreeing with me a second ago. I suppose it's easier to make snide comments than it is to contradict yourself, but seeing as you've been doing both so often, one would think the other was second nature. The fact remains that either something is logical or illogical, and if you are claiming faith in your god to be logical then you're going to have to prove it...logically. This merry-go-round of using logic to whenever it serves your point is intellectually dishonest.

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Please what? First cause is a necessity of physics. However, that cause, that trigger, though it need be supernatural, need not be a God. Perhaps we are part of the infinite string of spawning multiverses. The point is that our universe cannot create itself. Where did everything come from Nic? Where did space, time, matter and energy come from? Why did the universe come into existence at all? There's nothing, then POW!, there it is. Again, I ask you: If there is no creative intelligence, no God, how does an ordered system arise from nothing?
First of all, you are clearly talking about your god being the "logical necessity." I know, I know, it ruins your "Nicato is misrepresenting my arguments" jive but it's the truth.

Secondly, I don't fucking know. What I do know is that it is stunning how you've managed to mirror the exact same arguments life on Earth circa three-hundred years ago; providing no positive evidence, rather relying on a cosmic-scaled watchmaker argument.

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Well duh. That's not the point. The point is that faith is not an arbitrary construct.
Duh? If "faith in God" isn't faith in God then don't fucking say it's faith in God! Seriously, you act like I'm missing something when you can't even string together a coherent thought.

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How does an abstraction "replicate itself"?
Yeah, ideas are like virus in that they rely on people to replicate themselves.

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Right. Why is this even still being discussed?
Because you brought it up, you twat.

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That's not what I said. Again, you miss the point. God dammit, I have addressed this directly numerous times.
Yeah, and you didn't say that faith was reasonable or that your god was a "logical necessity" either. . Mike, seriously, stop pretending that I ever misrepresented your arguments. I know you like to play copycat (you accuse me of making circular arguments only after I did) but it's getting old. I quote: "You seem to hold the belief, and I could be wrong here, that all that exists should be completely knowable through naturalistic observation.." There it is, clear as day. Stop making me embarrass you.

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The very concept of logic is something that arises purely from our natural state and its inherent limitations.
Yeah, dude, and so does your understanding of the supernatural (and everything else). Seriously, this is ammeter hour. If this is the best you got then I'm done here.

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You need to learn that there is a difference between making an argument for something and "demonstrating" something. The only thing you demonstrated is your ignorance of the subject at hand.
Making an argument involves presenting evidence. I have gotten into many, many debates on these here forums and I seriously doubt that I would continue to do so if I din't know how to argue. I shouldn't need you to tell me what an argument is, seeing as how you've ended up on the losing side of many such encounters. Seriously, you make logically fallacious like there going out of style and you can't even be consistent when you're wrong.

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The entire point behind everything I've written is that natural phenomena show evidence of design, order, creation, and the supernatural. Is the universe spontaneously coming into existence out of nothing any more logical than a Creative God? And before you go accusing me of a false dichotomy, remember that while there is much evidence for God's reality, we have to first acknowledge the reality of the supernatural. There is still room for a supernatural reality that has nothing to do with God, such as the multiverses of String Theory.
I want you to think hard, Mike. What does the multiverse hypothesis, string hypothesis, and your god hypothesis all have in common?

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By what criterion do you assume our perception of design and order to be an illusion?
It's a simple fact of our evolution, Mike. Life on earth looks as if it were designed and our brains are inclined to think it has. It's why so many people believed so convincing that it was; why the theory of Evolution is patently counterintuitive.

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Again you are not "demonstrating" jack squat.
Pathetic. You would sooner lie than you would admit your own admission. The fact of the matter is that I did successfully demonstrate that the limits of the universe say nothing as to the existence of something else--and you agreed with that. The fact that you are now pretending like it never happened is astounding.
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Old 04-09-2007, 11:13 AM   #101
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Originally Posted by Nicato View Post

There are many, many top-tier physics out there and most of them are managing to miss your "logical necessity" (which is to say your god). How could that be? I mean if it really was the case that the "only alternative" to your god was nothing, then why isn't Stephen Hawking making your argument? Surely a man capable of doing physics in his head could conclude what you claim is so obviously evident.
You're out of your league Nicato - and a loudmouth to boot.

http://www.ctinquiry.org/publication...1/torrance.htm

Some quotes for the half witted know it all too
http://www.spaceandmotion.com/albert...n-theology.htm

And basic reading for someone who claims to have an open mind

Mind of God
(written by a Professor of Theoretical and Mathematical Physics )
http://www.amazon.com/Mind-God-Scien.../dp/0671797182

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Old 04-09-2007, 04:02 PM   #102
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Originally Posted by Nicato View Post
If indeed it is ever found to be your god, it would have--at that point--became a part of science.
It would be constrained to the boundaries of the natural world, not supernatural, and thus not God.

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No, Mike, there is not. In fact, not only is there no evidence of numerous realities, but there isn't even evidence of two. All the ones which you've posited are either unknowable or on their face contradictory.
Well then, you need to brush up on your physics. Maybe studying string theory and/or M theory wouldn't be a bad idea. There is strong, logical evidence for other realities.


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Ha! I like the "if you watched Rod Liddle's special" bit. I fucking posted it. You're the one going on at length about Dawkins having failed to acknowledge that you read his book, so save the book recommendations too.
Nice pointless dig. I'm sorry, I'll clear that up: I've read much (not all, I admit) of The God Delusion, excerpts from The Selfish Gene, as well as watched numerous debates and read numerous articles by Dawkins. I've studied numerous major world religions including Buddhism, Judaism, Hinduism, Taoism, Shinto, and Islam in addition to my upbringing as a Christian. I'm a regular reader of Infidels.org and talkorigins.org. I've read countless books on theology, both religious and secular. So yeah, I think I am doing my part. It wouldn't kill you to watch a freakin' DVD. But whatever, it's your mind. Keep it as closed as you want.

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With Hawking I was only saying that you shouldn't draw your conclusions from anything he has to say if you truly believed that science is intrinsically bound to the natural world.
That doesn't make any sense. How could we see that there's evidence for divine intelligence without understanding the universe?

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Yes, Mike, the god of which you are speaking is not the god which the majority of theists believe. Please realize this.
I'm not arguing for a different God than one that answers prayers, keeps tabs on Earthly affairs, yada yada yada. In fact, I haven't even gotten to that kind of subject matter. Right now I'm simply discussing evidence for the mere existence of a Creator God using tenants that are virtually ubiquitous in religions.

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If nothing else, you have redefined God in light of evidence of from science. No theologian from centuries ago could have appreciated the size and scope of our universe and the fact that we are in a position to better grasp its majesty should be nothing to deny.
I haven't redefined God at all. God as Creator is a fundamental tenant of virtually all religions. I'm suggesting that science has allowed us a better understanding of the reality of God.

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You have redefined god for the better, but ultimately you've presented only fallacious arguments for its existence. Realize that too.
I suppose I'll have to take your word for that O Wise Nicato, since you haven't been able to concoct a rebuttal for any of the core tenants of my argument.

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Know this: You are saying that your God hypothesis is not able to be examined scientifically or logically, yet you are using SCIENCE and LOGIC to conclude it's existence. It is genuinely dumbfounding how you're able to continue this charade.
Maybe this will sound familiar: How do you know that dinosaurs are extinct? In order for scientists to prove that dinosaurs are extinct, they'd have to find every animal on the planet, then prove that it's not a dinosaur. Obviously that's impossible. Scientists use logical inference based upon observable evidence to conclude that dinosaurs are extinct. They assume dinosaurs are extinct because we don't see them walking around these days.

The same concept applies in theology. We're talking about things that are fundamentally beyond our ability to completely know or understand, thus why I've continued to correct you that I am not, as you incessantly accuse me of doing, "concluding" God's existence. Based upon the observable world around me, I am logically inferring that a Creative God exists. I can't know that for certain, of course. God may not exist. I am an agnostic theist. But I can observe many things which point to God's existence being a very logical, and quite probable, reality.

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The fact remains that either something is logical or illogical, and if you are claiming faith in your god to be logical then you're going to have to prove it...logically. This merry-go-round of using logic to whenever it serves your point is intellectually dishonest.
You're continually missing the point here Nic. See above. Yes, faith in God is logical, because there is much evidence that makes God's existence logical. Yet, as I've said, this same logic points us to its own limitations; it shows that there are some things intrinsically beyond our full understanding.

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First of all, you are clearly talking about your god being the "logical necessity." I know, I know, it ruins your "Nicato is misrepresenting my arguments" jive but it's the truth.
No, you f'in assbutt, it is not the truth. I've spent every damn post correcting this idiocy of yours. If the only way you can conduct a debate is to misrepresent your opponent's arguments, you should probably find something else to do.

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Secondly, I don't fucking know. What I do know is that it is stunning how you've managed to mirror the exact same arguments life on Earth circa three-hundred years ago; providing no positive evidence, rather relying on a cosmic-scaled watchmaker argument.
You will never know. We will never know. In all likelihood, it cannot be known. But much can be logically inferred from our understanding of the world around us. That is the point. That faith isn't something that billions of people pulled out of their asses. They looked at the world around them and inferred God's existence. It's quite amazing that as science has advanced, it's only brought us closer to God's reality.

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Duh? If "faith in God" isn't faith in God then don't fucking say it's faith in God! Seriously, you act like I'm missing something when you can't even string together a coherent thought.
It IS faith Nic. Jeez, don't you get it? There are things that are ultimately unknowable like "does God exist?" But that doesn't mean there aren't things that may give us indications one way or another. For example, if science had proved that the universe was totally enclosed and infinitely self-perpetuating as many physicists have attempted to do, it would mean there was no moment of "birth" or creation, and no need for a Creator.

You just can't seem to wrap your mind around the most basic concept here: that faith uses reason as a tool to further itself, but it is not ultimately reducible to reason because reason itself leads us to things that are beyond our capacity of understanding.

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Yeah, ideas are like virus in that they rely on people to replicate themselves.
So, ideas are entities?

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Because you brought it up, you twat.
Nice try douchecock, but your foot is squarely in your mouth and you know it.

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I quote: "You seem to hold the belief, and I could be wrong here, that all that exists should be completely knowable through naturalistic observation.." There it is, clear as day. Stop making me embarrass you.
What blows my mind is that I immediately addressed this when I pointed out that I was explaining my understanding of something as you had phrased it hence the "seem" and the "I could be wrong here" not that I was making assumptions. I freaking left a football-field-sized door open for you to make clarifications. Instead you accused me of a making straw man arguments. What a load of idiocy. I explained this right off the bat and you just looked right past it. Typical.

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Yeah, dude, and so does your understanding of the supernatural (and everything else). Seriously, this is ammeter hour. If this is the best you got then I'm done here.
Nice dodge.

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Seriously, you make logically fallacious like there going out of style and you can't even be consistent when you're wrong.
Wow, the only thing bigger than this universe is your delusional ego. You don't know how to argue. If you did, I wouldn't have to correct you on basic points on virtually every single post. Argument involves listening and responding, not just sounding off.

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I want you to think hard, Mike. What does the multiverse hypothesis, string hypothesis, and your god hypothesis all have in common?
They are all based upon logical inference of observable evidence.

Also, you continually making statements such as "your God hypothesis" simply proves that you are constructing your own argument for God and rebutting it, not responding directly to mine.

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It's a simple fact of our evolution, Mike. Life on earth looks as if it were designed and our brains are inclined to think it has. It's why so many people believed so convincing that it was; why the theory of Evolution is patently counterintuitive.
You're expanding on your original statement, but you're still not answering the basic question of how you can quantitatively know that the world is not designed. You're assuming that the process of evolution itself has no purpose or design.

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Pathetic. You would sooner lie than you would admit your own admission. The fact of the matter is that I did successfully demonstrate that the limits of the universe say nothing as to the existence of something else--and you agreed with that. The fact that you are now pretending like it never happened is astounding.
Do show me where you think I agreed with that so I can clear up your misunderstanding.
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Old 04-09-2007, 04:08 PM   #103
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Originally Posted by naboo View Post
And basic reading for someone who claims to have an open mind

Mind of God
(written by a Professor of Theoretical and Mathematical Physics )
http://www.amazon.com/Mind-God-Scien.../dp/0671797182
Seconded. This book's on my to-read list.
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Old 04-09-2007, 04:34 PM   #104
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

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Originally Posted by Nicato View Post
I'm Sorry, Mike, but if you want to have a meaningful discussion then you are going to have to expand on what exactly it is I am missing.
You are missing, in no particular order:

1. That science brings us closer to understanding God, yet also forces us to accept that there are ultimately things beyond our understanding

2. That faith is derived in part from reason, and can be made stronger through reason, but is not reducible to reason because reason leads us to that which is beyond reason.

3. That making a statement of God's existence is not a "hypothesis" or scientific claim, because claims of supernatural phenomena, though they may be logically inferred from observable phenomena, are ultimately beyond our domain of understanding and not subject to the constraints of scientific inquiry.

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Example: the fact that I may not have be able to give you a secular theory as to what caused the diversity of life on this planet doesn't mean that a god is the "only alternative."
Wow, way to take a statement completely out of context. At no point whatsoever did I say that a creator was the only alternative to secular theory. In fact I have repeated throughout countless posts that I'm making no such a statement (this is a perfect example of why this whole debate is so exasperating – I have to correct the same shit over and over because you don't seem to want to listen!). I said that a Creative God is the only reality that allows for the universe to have intrinsic, rather than ascribed, purpose.

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You are invoking "god of the gaps." Plain and simple.
And Mike Tyson goes for Evander's ear!

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How you can continue to play the bully while acting like the victim is nothing short of astounding. Seriously, Bill O'Reilly should take notes.
Yeah, all those bigoted remarks I made about atheists were sure inappropriate.



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I fail to see how something being in the beginning of somewhere makes it both nothing and nowhere. If the "finite point" was at the beginning of the universe, then it was still in the universe, and therefore subjected to its laws. Try again.
No, because this finite point was not within the universe, but contained all that was the universe.

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Drumroll, please: The very fact that we have no positive evidence for X means that we can't observe evidence for X's existence. I can't believe I had to explain that.
How do you know that dinosaurs are extinct?



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If the universe has no bounds, then all events are impossible to avoid. "...that's nonsensical..." It takes sense to make sense.
I didn't say that all events are inevitable. I said all events that have happened inevitably happened when they did. Probability relates only to our ability to predict such events. We can always posture what might have happened if this or that happened differently, but that's really an exercise in futility. What I'm trying to say is simply that the laws of the universe led things to happen when they did.The question then is how do we define what is random? Is randomness only an abstraction?

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Read a book. It's not my job to educate you.
Oh snap!

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Again, I'll go slow: there is no evidence of design, especially perfect or divine design.
It's all around you, Einstein.

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Through all your pussyfooting though, you've managed to avoid answering the fucking question. Where is the evidence of design Mike? And if designed, how do you explain the inefficiencies and redundancies?
I've already addressed both of these in detail.

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Easy, cowboy. You might want focus on digging yourself out of your self-causing universe paradox first.
You mean the thing you say is a paradox even though you've been unable to present a coherent argument as to why?

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Answer the damn question. I know, I know, your use of "perfect" was unfortunate. But you did say it so you're going to have to defend it. Ordered as opposed to what, Mike?
*Drum roll* Disordered! Universes collapsing on themselves, physical laws bending, breaking, changing, or not existing at all!

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The same way your arguments do.

Again, you're making a false dichotomy. The options aren't necessarily your god or nothing.
On the former: Oh snap! Another dodge! You're good at those, Nic. Keep it up! It makes me look good.

As for the latter, I'd be a rich man if I had a nickel for every time you resurrected this lame straw man.

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Then our universe is probably random.
Random, from what?

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Seriously, unless you're going to throw up an equation, you can stop invoking physics. It's like amateur hour.
Unlike you, I've devoted a substantial portion of my free time to studying physics. Not for any religious reasons, but because I studied some physics in college and I think it's cool. So unless you purport to have some understanding, you can stop trying to refute arguments that are clearly out of your league.

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There are many, many top-tier physics out there and most of them are managing to miss your "logical necessity" (which is to say your god). How could that be? I mean if it really was the case that the "only alternative" to your god was nothing, then why isn't Stephen Hawking making your argument? Surely a man capable of doing physics in his head could conclude what you claim is so obviously evident.
It's worth noting that science is, by definition, a naturalistic science. Science has a responsibility to not make conclusive statements about the unknown. Hawking did not know that the universe existed in a point of infinite density. Just imagine that the universes' expansion was reversed; everything would be compacted and compacted infinitely. Hawking's statement was the simple result of observable calculations. But Hawking is no theologian. It's his job to just keep asking questions, regardless of his personal faith.

But, that doesn't mean science cannot guide us toward a better understanding of the supernatural. I've had "Mind of God" on my list for a while; Paul Davies is a highly respected and acclaimed theoretical physicist. Deepak Chopra's "How to Know God" DVD also discusses how quantum physics can lead to an understanding of our origins as supernatural.
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Old 04-09-2007, 06:05 PM   #105
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Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism

Conversation between Paul Davies and an atheist:

http://abc.net.au/science/bigquestions/s460742.htm
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